Feature Proposal: Document-Cam

Hello together,

I have the following idea of a new feature, which could make Paperwork unique. Let me start from what I use at my mobile phone: I have an app, which takes a photo of a document and it has some algorithm to detect the borders of the paper and it can correct the distortion of the camera image. There are many of these apps, my favorite is ClearScanner.

On a computer, neither Windows nor Linux, I found no similar software to do the same thing with a simple webcam.

So my proposal is: Let’s enhance the LibPillowfight to correct the distortion, and enable Paperwork to use an interface to the webcam to take snapshots, detect the borders of the paper, let the user finetune it if needed and then proceed it like any scanner input.

Furthermore, this feature could also help when you scan a Page on your traditional scanner and it is smaller than A4.

In a further step, Paperwork could be enabled to automatically detect a document in the camera’s field of view. That would allow mass-scanning very fast. You just need to present the paper in front of your webcam, and tada - it is in Paperwork.

How do you think about his idea?

Kind regards,


Oops, sorry, I missed your post :frowning:

I’m not sure to see the point of using a camera. You can get flatbed scanners dirt cheap on Ebay nowadays. It’s much faster to get a good result with one, and the end result is also much better.

Anyway, after Paperwork 2.0 (and after I work on another project of mine), I intend to make an Android version of Paperwork. We will see then.

Furthermore, this feature could also help when you scan a Page on your traditional scanner and it is smaller than A4.

In Libpillowfight, I’ve already implemented an algorithm to detect automatically scan borders. Fun fact: It’s actually much more tricky with a scanner than with a camera. Most scanners have a white background. Many scanners do also “cleanup” the scan, often removing most of the page borders in the process (Brother scanners for instance).
Anyway, in Paperwork 2.0, the plan is that when you edit a page and ask to crop it, it will immediately suggest a default cropping using this algorithm.

Hello Jerome,

thanks for the answer. I also agree that the feature is not as useful as I thought at the beginning. I made some tries with my webcam, and I must admit that webcams for USB use with Computers are providing far less quality than e.g. the cameras on mobile phones. The text on the documents was not readable, so that there is almost no benefit.

But I appreciate the promised improvements for Paperwork 2.0.

Kind regards,


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Actually that’s not true anymore. Consider this fascinating project:

Shine Ultra Portable Scanner

Actually all of the scanners of that company that are already available (only a bit less mobile and also more expensive) seem to show up, well like a standard USB cam on Linux.

So being able to record documents from a cam + doing the