Monday, March 18, 2013

ECM Glossary: Letter C

 Today we’re pleased to bring you the third installment in our document management glossary: words and terms that begin with the letter “C”.

Letter A.

Letter B. 

Letter C.


Within the life cycle of content (according to the theory of Enterprise Content Management”, capture is one of the first stages.

When we want to enter data into an ECM system, we can be confronted with two situations: having the documents in physical form, on paper: or having the documents in digital form (but in an unstructured way.) In the first case, we need to convert the paper documents into electronic documents in order to manage them, with the help of ICR or OCR technology.

Once we’ve got all the documents in digital format, we’re confronted with the next problem: we should organize them within in a logical and coherent structure which allows them to be managed efficiently. Having an adequate structure for the content means that we have to categorize said content, grouping everything according to criteria that normally is its content. To automate this document classification process, metadata is normally used; metadata is, simply put, information about the specific attributes of the document. Content management applications, therefore, are responsible for putting each document into the appropriate place, according to the information provided by the metadata.

Once we’ve got the documents or content in our ECM system and placed in a logical way within the system, we can say that the capture process has been finalized.

CategorizationWithin the Capture phase of ECM, there is a process called Categorization. This stage refers to the organization of content into logical groups according to the content.

Our Athento platform offers users interesting features that are connected to the capture and categorization of documents, not just within the OCR module, but also with an Auto-tagging module which allows for the use of tags (either concepts or words) to group documents, So if we tag various different documents under the same concept, one search for this tag will give us all the documentation that was tagged with this concept. The most interesting thing is that the Auto-tagging can pull up all the tags automatically, extracting the content of the documents and bypassing the need for users to waste time and work establishing the tags themselves.

Content Management System (CMS)No doubt, you’ve probably heard the term CMS used more than once: Drupal, Joomla, WordPress, eZ and Mambo are some of the systems available.

It’s because the term CMS has taken on a lot of meaning during the last few years within different web technologies. A CMS is simply an IT application based around a structure that allows for the creation and management of web content (publication, editing, classification, etc.) Content generated with the help of a management system is stored in a database which is updated each time that we edit, delete or create new content. CMS helps users work because they offer new structures which are functional, efficient and customizable. The tedious and boring work is already inside a CMS; all the user has to do is to worry about adapting its design to his or needs, and to generate content.

Most CMS systems have been developed with specific philosophies of usability, so that users who don’t have extensive knowledge of IT systems can use them with the greatest of ease. That’s why CMS are an excellent option for many users. However, they can be a bit of a straightjacket when you need something more specific because they’ve been created to meet a generic need and address the most general problems that users face when they’re trying to generate content for the Internet.

Content management and document management should also interact, in many cases, with information that is produced on the web, or offer interfaces so that external users (those users to whom we don’t want to give access to our internal document management system) can upload content or documents to the document manager. Athento gives you the possibility to integrate your document manager with a web interface which can work as the entry point for documents provided by third parties. Think of a web page, with all of the necessary multimedia characteristics, that your clients or suppliers can use to interact with your business and generate content which can automatically be included in your management system. They’ll be able to upload documents via simple forms, obtain information about your services, and, generally, all of the services that a web page can offer a business.

Other document managers can only give you integration with well-known CMS systems on the market: we offer you made-to-measure development which covers all of your particular needs. The technology used to offer you this web interface is called Django, an extremely powerful framework used by businesses and project such as tThe Washington Post, the Lawrence Journal Word and You can learn more about Django here:

Content Management Interoperability Services (CMIS)CMIS is becoming the standard which allows the interaction between DMS (document management system) applications. CMIS offers a group of web services that allow users to share data and information among repositories of content and to facilitate the interoperability of document management systems. In this way, if, one day, you want to migrate from one document management system to another, it’s extremely beneficial if both management systems contain CMIS specifications.

CMIS also offers interoperability between CMS (Content Management System) and DMS. Put simply, meeting CMIS directives allows us to be able to carry out integrations without large problems between web applications such as Drupal, eZ and Joomla with our document management system.

Right now, well-known businesses in the sector are working together to turn CMIS into the standard for ECM software.

CMIS specification allows clients and servers to share the same language in HTTP (SOAP or REST/AtomPub), using a unified dominion model. 

Collaboration Tools Collaboration tools allow various users to work on the same content in an common environment. Basically, they allow various uses to work together in a shared virtual environment, even if they’re not physically in the same location. They are one of the greatest and most interesting gifts created by Web 2.0. Examples of collaboration tools include forums, Google Docs, etc.

Athento provides users with a Collaboration Mode that allows for coordinated team work via the use of forums, e-mail subscriptions, RSS, Atom and shared work spaces.

Control Panel The control panel is like the dashboard of your car, the place where we have all of the information about the vehicle at one moment: temperature, gas level, speed, RPM, odometer, etc. – but focused on the business. It is, therefore, a collection of indicators which tell us about the current state of our organization or our processes. Control panels could include financial data, production statistics, sales data, marketing information, quality control, human resources, etc. It works as a monitor of the state of the business and a valued tool for business intelligence

Athento contains solutions such as “The Control Panel” which allows you to monitor the current state of the system, specifically tasks to be resolved, work flows that have been started, modified documentation, work spaces, etc. 

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