This is in continuation to my earlier article “Microfilm or Digitization: Simplified View”. In earlier article I discussed why digitization should be preferred over Microfilms, although microfilms have certain advantages over digitization like life expectancy of microfilm is of 500 years, it is eye readable and is also an analog technology.
In today’s scenario digitization has proved itself over the advantages of microfilms; for e.g. storage media cost is cheap today and transfer of data from one media to another (in case of technology upgradation) is also simple or automatic. Scanned/digitized images cannot be read through naked eye from the storage media directly (without attaching it to a computer system) but a computer system is now available at every corner of the globe and is rapidly expanding its reach.
Below is the comparison of Digitization and Microfilming/Scanning to understand the concept in detail.
|1||Cost of conversion||More than scanning||Less than Microfilms|
|2||Space Requirement||More (As physically stored)||Less (As electronically stored)|
|3||Preservation / Storage Method||Special Physical method||Virtual / Electronic|
|4||Maintenance Method||Special Physical method||Virtual / Electronic|
|5||Technology Refreshing Cost||High||Low|
|6||Effect of environmental changes||Sensitive (Because it is tangible)||Insensitive (Non tangible)|
|7||Security Procedures||Special Physical method||Virtual / Electronic|
|8||Transfer / transportation cost||More (Physical)||Less (Electronic)|
|1||Physical damage||Possible||Not possible|
|3||User acceptance||Not user friendly||User friendly|
|4||Document Sharing||Not possible||Possible|
|5||Rapid Retrieval||Takes more time||Quick|
|6||Concurrent Access||Not possible||Possible|
|7||Access Method||Sequential & Physical(Time consuming)||Random (Quick)|
|8||Retrieval Method||Requires special device||By basic Computer|
|9||Query resolution based on documents||Takes more time||Instantaneous|
|10||Remote Access (Across world)||Not Possible (As it is physical)||Easily possible (As it is electronic)|
|11||Online Access (Network, Internet etc.)||Not possible||Easily possible|
|12||Viewing Images||Requires special device||By Click of mouse|
|13||Printing||Poor image & delayed||Good Image & quick|
|15||Alternate to Photocopy||Costly Method (Physical)||Economical Method (Digital)|
|16||Alternate to printing||Costly Method (Physical)||Economical Method (Digital)|
|17||Workflow compatibility by software||Not possible||Possible|
|18||Software Integration (Document Mgt.)||Difficult||Easy|
|19||Sensitivity to light||More||Insensitive (Non tangible)|
|20||Method to View||Requires special device||On Any Computer|
|22||Inter Office Movement of records||Physical (First Printing then Hand carried)||By Computer Network|
|1||Quality Control||Requires close monitoring||Easy|
|2||Color digitization||Poor Quality||Good Quality|
|3||Image Enhancement||Not possible||Possible|
|4||Conversion / Duplication||Quality degrades||Remains same|
|5||Visual clarity of images||Can’t see by naked eye||Visible through naked eye|
|6||Optical Character Recognition||Not Possible||Possible|
|7||Rearranging captured sequence||Not possible||Possible|
Web Site: http://www.newgensoft.com
Bio: Hemant is Senior Manager - Processing Services with Newgen Software Technologies Limited
Digitization is now an integral part of the business universe and is growing at the speed of lightning. Just like from virtual money, we are not too far from the scenario when we will have negligible amount of paper documents as part of our day to day life.
Newgen with its 15 years of experience in the document management space has found that physical condition of documents plays a major role in the cost of digitization and can impact the decision to delay the digitization in many organization.
Example :: A Scanner with 50PPM speed can produce about 24,000 images in simplex mode and 48,000 images in duplex mode, whereas practically we get a maximum of 10,000 to 12,000 images in a shift of 8 hours for a multiple mode scanning scenario(explained below). This is only 41% leaving the a scope of 59% for improvement and similar is the scope for profit in commercial terms.
Keeping in mind this 59% we have analyzed various bottlenecks in achieving 100% target. Although there are multiple factors which are impacting the daily production, here we are specifying the automated methods to regenerate images, which can increase the scanning output by 30% and can save around 80% of quality checking effort.
Actually quality check is never required in an efficient digitization environment as quality check is nothing but the correction of errors performed at the scanning stage. Subsequently, if we do not commit errors at scanning, quality check is not required. Although it is very difficult to do away with quality check process but we can at least work to minimize quality checking effort.
Here we are proposing to increase scanning output and speed up the quality check process, while reducing errors.
(a) Scanning Output
Scope-1: Most of the projects like insurance, banking, telecom etc. require multiple-mode scanning (color image for photographs & important documents and monochrome/B&W for other supporting documents), but the pages to be scanned in different modes are not at fixed location, so scanning software cannot be used continuously to get the maximum output from scanners.
Now, if we can tightly integrate scanning software with the scanner’s driver, then we can use control sheets with barcodes, where value of barcode will help the scanner to determine the scanning mode like color or monochrome automatically while scanning (without having to stop). So the change in scanner mode will be at driver’s level and not at scanning utility level, now we have the flexibility to keep these control sheets wherever we require in a bundle while scanning, and can use the scanner continuously without interruption.
Scope-2: There are many scanning utilities in which the scanning operator is not able to view the images while scanning is in progress, so the operator has to wait for scanning to complete (for the bunch kept in feeder tray). So, if operator is scanning 50 pages at a time then he is investing one minute in scanning and one minute in checking images after scanning, so total of 2 minutes are required for 50 pages whereas if he is able to see the images while scanning then only one minute is required to complete scanning thus the output will be doubled at the scanning stage, thus increasing the speed by 100%. But practically if we achieve even 50% we are successful.
This can be achieved with the use of ISIS scanning interface, which allows viewing images while scanning is in progress. So, go ahead and shift to a scanning utility with ISIS viewer.
(b) Quality Checking Output
Scope-1: QC operator views every image and physical document to verify the errors, if image requires rescanning, then it is marked and sent for rescanning. This entails extra efforts and time wasted in performing the same task again and again. To avoid repeated effort if we deploy flatbed scanners at every QC operator workstation then it becomes costly and time consuming, as a single page scanning on flatbed consumes min 15 to 30 seconds.
Now, if we use entry level professional digital camera (with the option for remote shooting) with scanning utility/software, then we can save lot of time, effort and money. Cost of digital camera is approx 1/3 of A3 flatbed scanner and the scanning speed is also better than that of flatbed scanners. Moreover, the transportation is also easy for digital cameras due to compact size, and we can scan bound documents also and that too at the quality checking stage. Now we can drop dedicated rescanning activity.
Swati Pandey19th Feb 14 Posted a comment on Facilitating Financial Inclusion through Digital Transformation
Well written and informative.The article clearly depicts the writers thoughtand knowledge in the domain.All the best!! Looking forward for more ...
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