Japanese scientists has been demonstrating a scanner that uses revolutionary chip technology to scan a 200 page book in just a minute. Masatoshi Ishikawa, a professor at the University of Tokyo, and lab members Takashi Nakashima and Yoshihiro Watanabe have built the scanner using a special Super Vision Chip which can react faster than the eye can see. The chip, along with a high definition camera, allows a book to be scanned just by flipping through the pages. The camera shoots at 500 frames per second, at 1280 by 1024 pixels, and takes two images of each page, one under regular light to get the content of the book and the other of a laser projecting lines on the page. The laser detects how curved the page is and then the scanner uses software to build a 3D image of the page. The final content may not be quite as good as a flat panel scan but it is certainly readable Professor Ishikawa says. At the moment the device is in prototype stage but Professor Ishikawa’s team are working on miniaturising the system so that it can be installed in portable devices like smartphones.