The last in my series of six issues relative to getting rid of paper focuses on what I call Mash-up Madness. See also…
- Paperless Dilemma No. 1 – Paper Persistence
- Paperless Dilemma No. 2 – Legal Limbo
- Paperless Dilemma No. 3 – Input Irregularity
- Paperless Dilemma No. 4 – Cloud Craziness
- Paperless Dilemma No. 5 – Perplexing Processes
The last topic in my series focuses on some of the rather unusual combinations and mash-ups that are being driven by consumerization, the collision of cloud and mobile, and the Internet of Things. This gets beyond just going paperless, but I think it’s important to place our tactical paper reduction initiatives in a broader context.
For years, those of us in the content management space have made a distinction between unstructured information and structured information (i.e., data). This has been a comfortable distinction and allowed us to conveniently describe what is “in” our space and what is “something else.” The problem with this is that these lines are blurring. Users no longer make this distinction, if they ever did. It’s just data, used in the context of process. And this mash-up between unstructured and structured information requires a different skill set – one that cuts across the worlds of content and data (like the CIP!).
A second mash-up relates to the collision between the MFP/copier space and content management. There is still a bias that somehow players from the MFP side of the house are not “real” content management. But that makes about as much sense as when we said back in 2007 that SharePoint wasn’t “real” ECM. Perceptive/Lexmark is a good example of the new breed of content management players with roots in the MFP space. Consider for a moment the acquisitions by Lexmark over the past four years:
Lastly, and coming back to the world of paper, I think we are seeing an increasing mash-up between capture devices and software. Over the next few years, this will accelerate as more and more software power becomes embedded directly in the device – giving us much better opportunity to finally cross the paperless divide. Consider the Fujitsu fi-7180 scanner, which retails for about $1,500.
This scanner includes the following bundled software – “PaperStream IP (TWAIN/ISIS) Driver, Software Operation Panel, Error Recovery Guide, PaperStream Capture, ScanSnap Manager for fi Series, Scan to Microsoft SharePoint (13), ABBYY FineReader for ScanSnap, Scanner Central Admin Agent.”
It also the following embedded image processing software – “Multi-image, Blank page skip, i-DTC, Advanced-DTC, Simplified-DTC, sRGB, Auto color, Deskew cropping, Punch hole removal, Tab cropping, Upper lower separation, Error diffusion, Dither, Moire removal, Image Emphasis, Color cleanup, Dropout color (None, Specified, Color Saturation), Edge repair, Vertical Streaks Reduction.”
[Note: Before I’m accused of favoritism, this is just for illustration – the same could be said for scanners of any other major manufacturer as well.]
The point is, consider how different the software component of this product is from the value proposition of a scanner as recently as five years ago. And imagine what this portends for going paperless as the hardware/software mash-up accelerates in the next few years.
So that wraps up my little series on the challenges of going paperless. Get our new Paper Wars research report HERE. And if you want a little cheat sheet on the issues I’ve discussed in these six posts, here you go…
A recent keynote that I did on the “Six Paperless Dilemmas” can be found HERE.