[sane-devel] Complete newbie seeks advice re image capture device and backends

Dale Callaham dac at research.umass.edu
Mon Oct 4 10:28:38 UTC 2010

Hi, I'm not subscribed yet but just wanted to get some general direction 
from experienced people about the practicality of what I am planning. I 
have read through some of the info and just wanted a reality check if 
what I am thinking is possible or reasonable.

I work in science and formerly built an image capture device for a SEM 
(Scanning Electron Microscope). The SEM device scans an electron beam on 
the sample in lines and produces analog output and sync signals that I 
use to produce pixels. It only does a couple of scan resolutions and my 
device will output 640x480 or 1920x1440 8-bit grayscale image data. I am 
re-working this project (old one was DOS+Assembly, example image at 
http://www.bio.umass.edu/microscopy/images/eggshell.jpg) to use a small 
microcontroller/A2D/interface "box" in the microscope that will do some 
minimal communications with a USB interface (from FTDI). Basically, the 
microcontroller looks at the USB chip/FIFO receive buffer for a command 
- to take a low resolution or high resolution image, then looks at the 
microscope for the start of the scan, then converts and stuff the bytes 
into the USB-FIFO send buffer.

 From my brief reading of the SANE workings, it seems I might be able to 
write a "backend" to interface with my microcontroller via the USB 
interface and then have access to the "front-ends" that are available - 
to receive the data and turn it into images and write files.

My question. Is this thinking on track? Does this sound reasonable?

Thanks much for any advice.


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