On Tech Tips: Splitting Two-Page Scans with BRISS Page Splitter [Mac/Windows]

4 minutes read

Have you ever had a scan of a book - or a photocopy of a book - with two pages side-by-side, and wanted to split it to make it easier to read on your tablet or computer? Well, there’s a way to easily do that with BRISS Page Splitter, a simple tool that does one thing for you - split pages.

Splitting pesky two-page scans can make it much easier to read off a laptop or tablet, saving precious paper.

Electronic Reading Blues

Most people tell me of their disdain for reading from an electronic screen, especially when the reading material is a scanned page, a form many professors are fond of distributing. One of the reasons is that most scanned copies are in the two-page form, like the one below, and it makes electronic reading rather cumbersome than it should be.

Two-page scans can be hard to read on a screen, requiring constant panning and zooming around.

Luckily, there’s an easy way for you to split these pages into a continuous document using BRISS (BRIght Snippet Sire) Page Splitter. It’s a simple Java application that you can download for free.

Here is how you can use BRISS to split those pesky PDF Scans:

  1. Download the Briss package from the site.
  2. Unzip the contents and copy the entire folder and its contents to your program directory (Program Files for Windows, and Applications for Mac OS X). You might also want to create a desktop shortcut.
  3. Run the application by running ‘briss.exe’ for Windows and ‘briss-0.0.13.jar’ for Mac OS X or Linux. If you don’t already have it, download Java to run this application.
  4. Select File > Load File… and select the PDF that you want to split. Step 1
  5. In this dialog, place the page ranges that you want to exclude from splitting. Those that aren’t two-pagers. Most likely you won’t have any, so just press Cancel. Step 2
  6. It should start merging your previews. Wait a while. Step 3
  7. Now, you are given the time to specify the boundaries of the pages. Observe that the images are onion-skinned or overlaid on each other. Just click and drag to define the boundaries for each page. Remember that there is still another view if you scroll down and you should define the pages for that as well. This is because even pages may have a reverse orientation for other scanned documents, but this is not usually the case so just repeat the process. Define pages
  8. Select Action > Crop PDF… It should allow you to save the document, and when you open this, you should have split the document already! Congratulations! finished product

There you go - a way to make reading lengthy books or papers on your tablets or laptops and saving paper at the same time. Hope this helped!

Java tool for visually splitting two-page scans
Price: FREE
Platform: Any Java-compatible system (Mac OS X, Windows, Linux)
Download Link

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