[sane-devel] Scanner Database

Olaf Meeuwissen olaf.meeuwissen at avasys.jp
Thu Feb 23 00:42:23 UTC 2012

Michael Nagel <ubuntu at nailor.devzero.de> writes:

> Hi everyone,
> I'd like to hear your opinion/feedback on the following idea:
> Background:
> [... device related bug reports submitted against scanner applications
>  not being as useful as they could be and perhaps even slowing things
>  down ...]
> They contain some valuable information, BUT that information would be much more
> useful if it was somewhat structured and stored in a database.
> [...]
> 1) users can search it for information on how to get their scanner working
> 2) users can browse it to decide what scanner to buy
> 3) developers might analyze it to get an overview and spot regressions
> HOWEVER: unfortunately, there is no such database currently.

As Johannes mentioned in his reply, there is a database for printers[1]
that might be useful as a starting point.  Many scanners come equipped
with a printer these days and to the user it really is a single device.
Several printer vendors are actively updating the database for their new

 [1] http://www.linuxfoundation.org/collaborate/workgroups/openprinting

> [...]
> I talked to Robert Ancell from Simple Scan,
> and he is definitely interested and supporting this.
> I talked to Kåre Särs from Skanlite/libksane,
> and he is basically supporting this as well.

You may want to get in touch with Till Kamppeter (Linux Foundation
OpenPrinting Manager) as well.  I Cc:d him on this reply.

> So get your hats ready and tell me what you think about it as a
> SANE-standards-writer, backend-developer, frontend-developer,
> packager for a distribution, debugger, supporter or end-user
> and tell me what information would be useful for you...

A lot of the functionality that I would like to see in any scanner
database is already covered by the printer database.  It's just all the
scanner specific data that is missing.

One scanner specific issue that I would like to see addressed by a
(programmatically query-able) on-line database is the decision whether
or not a device is a scanner (independent of whether there's a working
driver for it).  While for printers this is rather trivial, scanners
often only show up as a "vendor specific" device and a database of what
are scanners would be useful.

Hope this helps,
Olaf Meeuwissen, LPIC-2           FLOSS Engineer -- AVASYS CORPORATION
FSF Associate Member #1962               Help support software freedom

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