Integrating a Scanner with Other Software

Because SANE is an API, it's theoretically possible for any program to call SANE in order to acquire scans. Of course, doing this makes more sense for some programs than for others. The programming effort involved in calling SANE, including giving users access to SANE options, means that programs that provide direct scanner access often use an interface toolkit provided by another package. For instance, the GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP) uses the XSane interface, and Kooka provides tools to enable KDE-based programs to interface to a scanner.

The details of how scanning works from nonscanner applications vary. In the GIMP, you select a scanner option from the File O Acquire menu (there may be several options for various scanners). The result is the usual collection of XSane windows shown in Figure 3.4; however, there's no XSane Mode option in the main control window. Anything you scan in this way goes straight into a GIMP window, where you can manipulate it as you would any other image. (Chapter 8 covers the GIMP in more detail.)

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