Researchers in Japan have built a book scanner capable of capturing 250 pages-per-minute. To put that into perspective, it would take under ten minutes to scan the entire Oxford English Dictionary.
Think of any generic TV or film robot that processes a book by rapidly flicking through all its pages...this is the literal translation of that! The machine, dubbed the BFS-Auto, takes high-resolution shots of each page (400 ppi), and uses these shots to create a flat appearance of the page. All that's required is the human loads the book into the machine and turns the machine on.
Give that bot a library card! The BFS Auto should be available for commercial purchase in 2013.
I am the Founder and Editor-in-chief of New Rising Media. You can follow me on Twitter @MrJasonEngland.