We’ve always used scanning to share things important to us—both personal and professional. Scanning lets us preserve and share important information and keep documents, photos, and even sites from disappearing. In celebration of Vaporstream’s new scanning capabilities, we dug up some fun facts from scanning history and explored how scanning has shaped how we share things. While scanning technology has evolved tremendously, when it comes to what we share, the saying “the more things change, the more they stay the same” definitely holds true.


Early Commercial Scanning Devices Were Used for Signature Verification in Banking Transactions.

The great-great-great grandfather of scanning was the Pantetelegraph, which could transmit handwriting, signatures and drawings over telegraph lines. In the 1860s, its most common use was to verify signatures in banking transactions. Sound familiar?


The photoradiogram was invented in 1924, making it possible to send images wirelessly overseas.

The wireless photoradiogram is considered the forerunner to the fax machine, another member of the scanning family. Its invention made it possible to send images overseas. The very first image sent across the Atlantic? A picture of then President Calvin Coolidge, sent from New York to London.


Companies wanted to fax newspapers to homes in the 1930s but failed.

In the 1930s companies tried using wireless transmission to transmit newspapers directly into people’s homes. But this didn’t really work out because both printers and paper were expensive and the radio transmissions required for this was slow and erratic. So, the public quickly returned to the comfort of daily-delivered newspapers, reminding us that if a technology isn’t easy to use, it’s not going to be used. Case in point: these days, the print paper is less common because it’s easy to get your news on multiple devices.


The first image scanned to a computer was a picture of a baby.

Apparently, people have always loved uploading pictures of their children. In 1957, Russel Kirch, a member of the team working on developing the digital image scanner, scanned a picture of his three-month-old son to a computer. It’s still a well-known image today.


3D Scans could preserve history.

Google is currently using 3D scanning to preserve damaged historical sites and letting people view them online. The scans could even provide blueprints for rebuilding the sites.


But along the way, we’ve learned we need to be able to retain control over information that we scan. Scanning is a great way to share documents—but you need to make sure that the documents aren’t shared further, inadvertently or otherwise, with the wrong people. Vaporstream’s scanning feature protects your documents each step of the way. When you scan a document, it’s automatically routed to a designated system of record without storing it on your device or in the cloud. Scanning makes it easier than ever to share things; you should be able to do that without having to worry about leaking information.