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Old Scanner? New Mac? No Problem!

Like bajillions of other people, I bought a scanner many years ago. In my case it was a CanoScan, and I have nothing bad to say about it. It has been and still is a workhorse for me. Unfortunately, as Mac OS has evolved, the scanner drivers and software the devices are locked into has not. In fact, if you are using an Intel based Mac you may find it extremely difficult to even get your computer to recognize your TWAIN scanner. This is a huge pain for classrooms who can’t afford to upgrade scanners.

Fear not! After some poking around on “ye vast interwebs,” I came across a fellow in Sweeden named Mattias Ellert. Mattias has writen an Intel based (10.3-4-5) interface that should allow your Mac to recognize and utilize just about any major scanner made in the past decade that used TWAIN as the connection, whether it was USB or SCSI. It’s called:

It is all open source, and is pretty easy to install if you follow the directions on the page. Just download 4 packages for your particular Mac and run the installers. Done! Your Mac will now probably be able to use that scanner again, from right inside Image Capture, PhotoShop, MS Word, or many other software applications.

I know a lot of K-12 classroom teachers who would kiss this guy if they ever met him! Since you aren’t likely to run into him at the grocery store, you can feel free to give him a call to say thanks, though the long distance might be steep, and you’ll need to know Swedish.

Posted in My Thoughts.


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