How to help

Of course this site depends entirely on the computer and the internet, but many members who have a great deal of knowledge - or collections and items they would love to share with fellow members - consider this world a strange and even alien one. So here are a few words to help those unfamiliar with the process...

What, for instance, is a jpeg, a scan ... what do http, html, upload, download and the other jargon-words associated with this new internet-web thing actually MEAN? Don't worry - you don't really need to know any of this, or even how the words get on to the website (though it may help a bit if you do).

For those of us who have a computer and a scanner and are more familiar with the technology, the ideal is to scan at 150dpi for pages, covers and anything bigger; and at 150-300 dpi for individual stamps. These ideal specifications apply whether you are submitting items for the QC, for the website, or illustrations for the Auction.

Different makes of scanner, and even different generations of the same machine, present their information in different ways, so the picture above, taken from the editor's current scanner, may not be precisely the same as yours: but yours will have something similar. It shows at left the standard display when scanning. If you click on "Adjust the quality of the scanned picture" (bottom of the left-hand section) it brings up the display shown on the right. Here the scan's display resolution, measured in dpi (dots per inch), can be altered.

After you have made your scan, give it a name (something significant, though this is not terribly important), and then save it preferably as a jpg, ie, the letters after the dot at the end of the name will be jpg. Alternately, you could save it as a .png.

When you have finished scanning, collect together all your pictures (scans), copy or save them on to a disk, and send them to the Editor. PLEASE DO NOT SEND ILLUSTRATIONS BY EMAIL.

If you know how to do it, you should turn your collection into pdfs; the ideal size should be around 200KB or less. Here is an example, at 149KB,

from Dick Wilson's collection

If possible it would be helpful to have the words used on pages sent in Word (2003 or earlier) or in Text format, but a scan of the whole page is probably acceptable. If you are sending pdfs please do so as individual pages, as one whole page is easily dealt with.

For all of you for whom all this is meaningless (double-Dutch, as we say) DO NOT WORRY. A good photocopy colour (or black and white if there is no colour on the page) may well be of sufficient quality to work from. In first instance, please photocopy two or three pages as examples and send them to the Editor/Webmaster.

WANTED: Volunteers who can scan books or magazine articles to illustrations or text (OCR) so that we can put them up on the website. Please specify what you have that you can scan.

If any member has any doubts at all about any of the above, please email or write to the Editor/Webmaster, who will be delighted to hear from you.