[sane-devel] SANE2 proposal

Nick Lamb njl98r@ecs.soton.ac.uk
Mon, 15 Apr 2002 05:44:49 +0100

On Sun, Apr 14, 2002 at 11:03:02PM +0200, Oliver Rauch wrote:
> We also can create an own list in the standard, but then I do not see a reason
> why we should not use MIME.

My worry is that MIME solves a big huge problem with a great huge
solution, and I don't think we even want a medium-sized problem!

I like this new draft a lot more than some earlier ideas on the list,
for example I could definitely come around to the design of this "raw"
frame format for all sample-based frames. It took some getting used
to, but I think it could work once backend coders understand it.

I think explicitly enumerating supported frame types, even if we leave
the door ajar for some unimagined future, is still a strong plan. I
know you're looking for some concrete objections, and I don't have a
fully formed alternative, but we have some time to think about this, so...

MIME is over kill for our text needs. For the barcodes, full-page OCR
in hardware or whatever else is used in industry they will be happy with
one text format where MIME must (for historical reasons) treat many
hundreds of incompatible formats as equals. We don't need that.

Similarly we can assign short text names to JPEG and G2, G3 fax. It's
worth noting that, AFAIK there have been no significant changes in the
compression used by high speed scanner solutions since we last talked
about this! So this doesn't commit us to some 50-page format list,
just maybe a new addition once a decade, if SANE lasts that long.


I guess my remaining concerns with the MIME frame type in the new
draft can be thought of as "Is SANE about Scanner Access or not?". I
don't think SANE can be a good Scanner Access solution and also try
to be a good interface to VHS recorders, or hand-held web cams.

The lack of interest in xcam and related bits of SANE (look at all
those new additions for multi-page scanners, but not even a mention
of YCbCr or other webcam stuff) says to me that users want us to be
really good at scanning, and they are willing to go to V4L or VLS
if they want to look at moving pictures. 

If SANE concentrates on being a really great Scanner Access solution
then it doesn't need x-multipart-replace or video/vnd-ms-video or
even audio/mpeg. We can stick to just a half dozen or so types, and
leave the option open for developers to request new types if they
ever need them.