Dec 1, 2010

Network Aware Sheetfed Scanner

I'm hoping someone out there has done something like this before and can help me out.  I want to set up a sheetfed (where I drop a stack of papers in at once) scanner at home.  I want to have that scanner either connected to the home network (ethernet or wireless) or connected to a headless linux box on the network (via usb presumably).

I want it set up so that I drop in a multipage document, hit some single button - ideally a button on the scanner, but I'd accept something I could trigger over the network on the linux box.  At this point, the scanner goes to town, makes a pdf (or any image) with all the pages currently in the tray, and then drops this PDF on the network via NFS / Samba / FTP / whatever I can run from linux.  I'll come along later and organize / rename this file, but until then I don't want to have to go to a computer, open up some application, scan, preview, save, ...

I'm willing to buy whatever scanner and/or other devices, up to a few hundred dollars.  I'm happy to write a little code, install libraries, etc.  I don't need anything fancy like OCR.

I've heard of some products that do stuff like this when hooked up directly to a windows / mac machine that is already running, but I don't leave my windows/mac machines running.  I do however have a small linux machine that is always on.  I've also seen a scanner that will do this completely over the network, with a fancy touchscreen interface and such, but it was north of $1,500 which is out of my price range for this.

Any ideas?   Pointers?  I've searched around on the Google for some sage advice, but I think I'm running the wrong queries.