Of course the State of Hawaii doesn’t issue scanned birth certificates, they issue real ones on paper. On a real birth certificate black text is printed on colored paper, and the toner in the printer/copier is one color, black. It doesn’t print white. It’s only in scanning where software deals with the best way to show an image and where something that’s not black and white can appear.
We know that Mixed Raster Content (MRC) compression creates halos, as indicated in this academic article on MRC compression.
Birther scanner guru Douglas Vogt claims that it was not PDF optimization via MRC compression that created the halos because the scanned copy given to the Press also has halos, like the the White House PFD file. He said:
We used the reporters copy from one of the networks that was at the April 27, 2011 news conference. At 300 dpi it showed us all we needed to know. By the way the white halo is caused by unsharp mask and finally Mara Z. agreed with us. The white halo appeared both on the reporters copy and Savanna Guthrie’s copy so it was not part of any PDF manipulation.
Let’s look at what Vogt is talking about. First here’s a hugely magnified snip from the PDF file (magnified more than the resolution actually in the document).
And here’s a bit from the Press copy at its actual resolution:
It’s a little hard to see the white space around the letters in the second example, but compare the word “not” in the two examples to note that it’s really “not” the same effect and the halos are in different places. Let me zoom in ridiculously on that word for you. In one you see no halo to the left of the “n” and in the other there is.
All of this ZBAR (zooming beyond all recognition) is rather silly, and really what I wanted to get to was Orly’s claim about all Hawaiian birth certificates all lacking halos. How many did she examine? I would speculate that the number is between zero and not many. I did look at one that’s been on the Internet for quite a while, the certificate for “Alan” from 1963 and darned if there isn’t just a little halo there, rather like what we see on the Press copy of Obama’s certificate.
Alexander Pope quotes:
A little learning is a dangerous thing;
drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:
there shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
and drinking largely sobers us again.
Birther image analysis has always been based on shallow knowledge, guided by bias and amplified by the Dunning-Kruger effect. I won’t say I never learned something from a birther image analyst, but I never found their conclusions correct.