I'm scanning book covers now. The results aren't as picture-perfect as the Amazon versions available for more popular titles, but I like to think my versions have a homey charm.
LibraryThing is a dangerous, dangerous website.
While I'm taking a break from the scanner, why not a few words about the Rijkswidget I mentioned below? Pretty neat, no? And yet . . . and yet I'm not really convinced by it as a service, except for perhaps a very few institutions. Like many of these whizbang geek tools, it's a neat idea with a limited market (within the field of museums, I mean.) How many of these will any user really want to have? Loading the Yahoo! widget manager (which Windows users needed to do to be able to activate the Rijkswidget) brought with it a load of other little tools adding loads of clutter to my monitor screen. Not what I need, personally. So: neat, but I'm skeptical.
I'd also say that I wish the Rijksmuseum, in adapting new technology, tried to spruce up the content a little. By which I don't mean the paintings, which are all one could ask for, but the fairly stodgy label text offered with them. But that's another battle.
. . . While looking at Dutch museums, I noticed that the sublime Mauritshuis has added a great deal more of its collection online since the last time I looked. By which I mean the whole thing, the heroic bovine and pretty flowers alike. I'm happy to see once again Honthorst's The Violin Player, which entranced me when I saw it just over ten years ago and I've thought of ever since, vainly searching for images. Spending short but intensive time in the museums of Holland can be a bewitching experience, as one's knowledge of painters not widely seen in collections here grows dramatically. Rembrandt can put a mean spell on you--he did on me--with so many of those self-portraits seen in quick succession; but Honhorst was, for me, one of the standouts. Ok, there are about a dozen more, but stick with me. His Caravaggist paintings of single figures close to picture plane, engaging the viewer, were of a type I was familiar with, but his color and bonhomie were not something I had counted one. The Violin Player had both in spades, and I was hooked. It's a pretty heady experience to see it again, even if only on a computer screen. I can't say it's exactly as I remember, but the essentials come through.