Friday, April 29, 2005

Doug H. survey piece

In case you're interested in what Doug Henschen's up to.

AIIM Hotel Rooms

So, you're going to see an article in next week's edition about how well the sign-ups for AIIM/On Demand are going. However, don't be completely surprised if the attendance numbers don't come out as expected after this early momentum. Apparently, there are some serious lodging problems afoot. It just so happens the University of Pennsylvania's graduation ceremony is scheduled for Monday, May 16. So, perhaps only Tuesday will be slow - but that could affect the whole show.

We've pinged Kerry Gumas as Advanstar about this... but we really think Brian Randall, who should have known better, dropped the ballhere. From what I understand, lodging was going to be tight in Philly to begin with. Now, of course, Brian is gone - I'm not saying the two things are connected, but it really doesn't look good. In Brian's defense, I know he had a heckuva time finding a place for the show in 2005, but this seems like this could be a major screw-up.

Cheers.
RG

European digital libraries

No details with this story, except that some big names are on board.

Cheers.

RG

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Captiva e-Scan

Did you see Captiva's recent announcement about it's first eScan implemenation?. Interesting thing about it, is that it doesn't even include any paper capture. Here's the explanation that we got from Rob Jensen, Captiva's PR chief:

"CIC is using Kodak Digital Cameras (various models) and Sony Digital Recorders (various models). To clarify, they are not scanning paper claims. These are generated electronically via CIC's central claims management facility; the field agents are adding the supplementary documentation (the photos and recordings) to these via eScan. CIC currently has 800 users of this application. There are some trailing paper documents that are still being mailed, but CIC is looking at scanning these in the future."

Very interesting implemenation. Really speaks volumes about the potential of true content management and even digital asset management. We expect this multi-media capture to continue to become more important in the future.

Cheers.

RG

Monday, April 25, 2005

Longhorn

Here's an interesting article dealign with Microsoft's next generation OS, code-named, or really named, I can't tel which, Longhorn. Couple things worth noting here. First, is that Microsoft still thinks it can knock out PDF. Were people saying the same thing about WordPerfect 15 years ago? If they were, please stop me, but I still don't get why Microsoft doesn't just embrace PDF and attempt to extinguish it that way. I don't know that their "alternative" is going to get the job done. Seoncd, is seems Microsoft is introducing improved search and some sort of thumbnailing, which could be very helpful when working with images perhaps. Let's see. I for one can't wait to get my hands on Longhorn, just to see what it does.

Cheers.

RG

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Analyst on Open Text

This guy doesn't seem to like Open Text very much...

Mitek settles royalty dispute

It seems Mitek has settled its litigation was item processing software developer BSM. Unfortunately, we're not sure of the outcome of this litigation. If you know, please fill us in. Regardless, its settlement has enabled Mitek to receive its final $1 million payment from John Harland for last summer's acquisiton of Mitek's check and document image capture product lines.

Mitek has since refocused itself on developing fraud prevention technology utilizing its character recognition tools. Harland has also made an equity investment in Mitek and is working with them in this area.


Here's a brief summary of the litigation which appeared in Mitek's annual report:
[Mitek] is currently in litigation with BSM regarding a certain license agreement pursuant to which we licensed certain of BSM’s technology. BSM has claimed over $400,000 in unpaid royalties and [Mitek] has counterclaimed for over $1,000,000 with respect to interference with business relations, breach of confidentiality and unfair competition. At this time, the matter is in binding arbitration and we cannot make a reasonable determination regarding the outcome of this matter.

Apparently Harland wanted to make sure the applications were getting were free and clear of royalty concerns.

Cheers.

RG

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

VoteFiler

So, how about these guys? Have you seen this yet. They're a company with document imaging roots out of Manhatten, yes, they are a group of forms Sigma guys. And at FOSE last week they introduced this really cool vote tabulation system that includes a paper trail. It involves bar coded documents and apparently they have patents on the concept of filling data into an e-form, then capturing that data and printing a sheet with a bar code that refers back to that data. I talked with them about they didn't want to dicuss it much, but me thinks a whole lot of people are potentially in violation of this thing.

Anyhow, this VoteFiler appliation won best of FOSE. More on it in next issue of DIR. But I remember suggesting that someone in this industy jump into the vote counting market after the 2000 election. Glad to see someone is trying to tackle it.

Cheers.

Ralph

Monday, April 11, 2005

dakota execs in deep...

You may remember as one of those deals that seemed too good to be true...It seems the Goel brothers of dakota imaging fame are in a bit of hot water with WebMD. I for one, remember being startled at how attractive the sale of dakota to WebMD looked on paper. Yes, Sandeep Goel was a gentleman and a pleasure to interview, but I also remember classifying him as an unreliable source after some revenue projections he gave me turned out to be completely off base and then he later denied ever making such projections.

I don't think there is any quesiton that dakota has some pretty good forms processing software. However, it was pretty much only installed in customized one-off type solutions and dakota's plans for expansion seemed to run into snags. I remember a joint-marketing deal with Top Image Systems early in my career, where after I interviewed both parties, it was apparent the thing was never going to work, as they each saw the deal in completely different ways. Then, there was dakota's big jump into the ASP space, which reportedly cost them a bundle - and well, you all know what happened to first generation ASPs.

This ASP move, however, seemed to actually work out, when Web MD appeared as a white night and bought the company for a pretty attractive price last year... Lo and behold, it may not turn out so nicely after all. The Goels, are of course denying the whole thing..., but I have to wonder why would somebody the size of WebMD be worried about paying a couple millions dollars out them if they indeed got what they thought they were getting.

Cheers.

RG

Thursday, April 07, 2005

EMC ILM

Yes, EMC has been pushing its ILM stragegy ever since it bought Documentum. In fact, Legato (Lou Cole is originally from Erie, PA, you know) starting talking about it even before they did, at least in concept when they bought OTG in 2002 (I think.) Don't have time to fact check, as I'm waiting for my ride to the airport. Just finishing up at eCopy PaperConnection. What a turnout. I think they pulled this thing together in two months. Had the like of Rioch, Toshiba, HP, and Sharp announcing support for them on the hardware sde and there were like 25 ISV vendors. Just a good buzz at the event. Like people have been waiting for this to happen...

Anyhow, getting back to EMC, just had a pretty good briefing with Mike Ball. A few years back I thought I understood the ILM message, but then as the storage people started working with it, I lost it somewhere. Anyhow, Mike (who has a document background) brought it back home nicely. His analogy was that scanning paper eliminated a paper, or line of business problem, but created a new problem on the network. It really moved the problem to IT, which is EMC's domain...

So, that's where ILM comes in. Pretty interesting concept.

Cheers.

RG

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

PaperConnection

Currently at eCopy's "groundbreaking" PaperConnection event listening to Randy Kahn do his compliance spiet. Intereting insight or advice he provides, It's not longer only about better, faster, cheaper. It's also about the allowing the CEO to sleep more soundly at night" by expanding document management systems to include compliance.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Digital Copiers and more...

Sorry about the length between posting, was busy trying to scrap together a newsletter last week. Ended with with some pretty relevent stuff about the forms processng industry, the FAST search engine and some other stuff that may or may not interest you. I did one story about an enterprise software company acquiring a document output management vendor that also does imaging - because archiving is hot. Just more evidence that this technology as really hit its stride. ASG told me they compete with Computer Assocaites and BMC and were "falling down" against them becuase they didn't offer imaging. So they bought this company called Cypress, who I first wrote about like five years ago. I hadn't heard much from them since, but apparently, they've done pretty well as a repository vendor and Kofax reseller. Best wishes to them in the post-acquisition world.

I just got done posting several press releases. Go the home page to see them. A few of them involve the eCopy PaperConnection event I'll be attending this week. eCopy of course is one of the great success stories in the document imaaging market, going from minisule revenue to somewhere north of $30 million and claimed end-user total of more than $80 million per year - all within the last 7-8 years. I remember meeting CEO Ed Schmid and marketing manager Noel Colletti in the press room at AIIM in like 1998 when they were known as simplify. I had no idea what they were talking about - trying to do scanning on digital copiers. Sure, Xerox was talking about it then, but nobody was doing it.

Well, it so happened someone at Canon shared Ed and Noel's vision and away they went. The two got together in a partnership that has set the standard for scanning from digital copiers over the years. First, it was scan-to-email, now it's scan for ECM, but eCopy keeps growing and as other vendors enter the space, they keep evolving.

The big news at PaperConnection of course is that their software is being opened up to run on platforms other than Canon. I believe four vendors will be there to announce they have joined eCopy's hardware developer's program. These include Ricoh, Toshiba, HP, and Sharp. Ricoh of course is the big one. Canon's main competitor and we understand Canon is none to happy about it. Canon has gone on the record as saying, however, that it doesn't see any need to work with eCopy copetitors. We'll see.

Why is this market so important. Well, for one, it seems to be growing faster than the overall document capture market. It feeds beautifully in to the trend toward distribtued scanning, and digital copiers, which people already have, can do this stuff anyhow.

Will digital copiers kill dedicated document scanners? They haven't yet, in fact the market for workgroup scanners continues to grow. Scanning from a digital copier is nice because it can be added into the lease of the machine and it enables the end user to work with the same interface their used to, but in the end it might be more expensive than buying a $1,000 dedicated document scanner and a $500 capture program. For now, both markets appear healthy. We'll see where they go?

Hope to log in from Miami.

Cheers.

RG