Scanning, Recycling, and Reflecting

Yufang and I purchased a Canon CanoScan LIDE 100 flatbed scanner, because we wanted to cut down on all of our cooperatively accumulated clutter of papers, notes, and other school-related documents.  The past few days have been an interesting experience for me as I worked through notes from Georgia Tech, the University of Liverpool, and the past two years at Kent State.  

First, I am amazed at how much my handwriting has transformed over the years, and even from semester to semester.  In fact, if I did not know that I wrote all of this stuff, there is no way in Hades that I would believe the same person wrote all of these notes.  

Second, it is interesting how my note taking hasn’t changed that much over the years.  Anyone who has taken a class with me knows that I write down everything that I possibly can during class.  As a result, I have volumes of handwritten notes for all of my classes.  However, there are some subtle changes with the way that I cluster information on the page.  For example, my earlier notes are essentially one thought per line, but my later notes contain chunks of information with the first line against the margin and subsequent, related thoughts are listed beneath the first line with a hanging indent.  I’m not sure why I began doing this, but it seems to be a more recent development in grad school.  

Third, I’m surprised at how many notes are missing.  I know that I tossed a lot of material when I left Liverpool, but I’m missing a considerable amount of material from Kent State.  I have moved a couple of times since beginning school here, so it is possible that I accidentally threw some things out that I didn’t want to, or a box of school-related material may have been lost or left behind.  This is of course unfortunate, but there isn’t anything that I can do about it now.

Currently, Babacar’s African-American Literature class has 110 pages, Pendleton’s Semeiotics class is second with 100 pages, and Raja’s Postcolonialism course comes in second at 88 pages.

Another project that I’m working on right now is scanning all of my Star Wars and Star Trek clippings.  I’ve accumulated a small collection of magazine and calendar images of spacecraft that I’m currently assembling into a digital archive.

And, I have a deal for my KSU friends–I will trade you my class notes in exchange for yours.  After I finish scanning all of my class materials, I will let you borrow the scanner to digitize your own notes.  Let me know if you’re interested.