Author Archives: Damian Hospital

Convert Genealogical Microfiche to Digital Image

microfiche genealogy digitize

Digitizing genealogical records– it is easier now than in the past to find information about your ancestors. Many organizations are collecting genealogical information for research reasons. In spite of this, finding your family history may not be as easy as you would like. Original certificates of marriage, divorce, birth, death and other historical records, may be found in their original paper format. Generation Imaging are experts at converting historical records from microfiche archives, microfilm archives, or original paper form, to a digital format, such as PDF, TIFF, or JPEG.

There has always been an interest in people looking their ancestry information. Years ago we could only get genealogical information that had been passed down from family members. Many people have spend countless number of hours gathering information to build their own family tree. But many times this information was very limited in-spite of their efforts.

Companies that offer genealogical records to individuals that are looking for family history are looking for ways to provide more information for you. If you have records on microfilm or microfiche cards, and you need to convert these archival records to a digital format, contact Generation Imaging. We also scan paper documents and aperture cards. In addition, we can perform OCR and create searchable PDF files. This can allow individual to look up names, dates and other information. We can convert all types of hard copy records to digital format and help you build a digital automated system. Using this method, Genealogical Research Institutions are becoming more efficient than years ago.

We recently converted old newspaper records from 35mm microfilm to digital format for an out of state genealogical records institution. In this particular case, the microfilm had information that dated back about 100 years. Before the conversion took place, people had a very difficult time finding valuable information that was stored in the microfilm. It is easy to assume that many people got frustrated and did not find all they were looking for. We were successful at digitizing and creating searchable PDF files that can now be easily search. In an automated system, records can be found by typing a name into a field and the system locates all the records that have that name . This automated process is usually more efficient at locating records when compared to a person searching through thousands of documents. In addition, the time savings when using an automated system is huge. This time savings and efficiency may turn into a win win situation for everyone.

Contacting us for your microfilm or document conversion needs is easy.  We are equipped to quickly and efficiently convert your genealogical records for you. Old documents that are kept on microfiche or microfilm, or are in paper format, require an expert to carefully and safely digitize the information. We use the latest technology to scan records. We have converted 35mm microfilm, 16mm microfilm and other types of documents for many years.

If you have millions of vital records that need to be digitized, or if you just have a couple of rolls of microfilm or a few microfiche cards, we can help you decide the best way to digitize the images, and we can provide you with the best options for you historical records. CONTACT US

Before You Buy a Microfiche Scanner

Things to Know Before You Buy Microfiche Scanners

buy microfiche scanner

Microfiche Scanners are Like Cameras

Before you buy a microfiche scanner, it is important to know how a microfiche scanner works. Some concepts between a digital picture camera and a microfiche scanner are similar. Microfiche scanners also use a digital camera to produce an image from the microfiche card. A microfiche scanner also has a lens system to project an image to the camera. Light from a light source passes through the microfiche cards. The image that reaches the lens is transferred to the camera .

From this point of view, a microfiche scanner is straightforward. Frames from a microfiche card are digitized with a microfiche scanner. Once the digital camera collects the image, it generates a digital image that can be viewed and stored in a computer. The microfiche scanner is a high speed camera that results in digital images from microfiche cards.

Microfiche Scanners Use Special Software

Most microfiche scanners are designed to move through the grid guide of a microfiche to catch each frame as a independent image. The systems are designed with tools that allow operators to locate each frame from the microfiche. Frame location is a term used to describe this method. Scanners need to have various methods available to deal with different microfiche formats. To learn all the distinctive methods of a microfiche scanner, it sometimes takes years of practice.

One of the primary steps in setting up a microfiche scanner is to regulate the frame detection. Digital images of each frame are formed by the microfiche scanner as it locates the frames on the microfiche. The light that passes through the microfiche and reaches the microfiche scanner camera, is transformed to produce a digital image. Scanning systems should allow operators to make alterations to maximize the quality of digital image produce. The best possible quality can be achieve by an experienced operator that has the skills needed to operate a good microfiche scanner.

The position of the microfiche scanner camera is very important for various reasons. Advanced microfiche scanners have options available so that an operator can adjust this position. The correct modifications to the system are imperative to focus the image properly and to project the image at the accurate magnification.

Should You Buy a Microfiche Scanner?

If you are researching to buy a microfiche scanner (from NextScan, Sunrise, Mekel, Ristech, Wicks & Wilson, etc.), you can confirm with us for more significant information. If you are comparing the options between buying a microfiche scanner and outsourcing the project, we can assist you with critical information.

Take advantage of our experience converting millions of images and ask us about it. Buying a microfiche scanner is a giant investment and you may want to get informed as much as possible before you make the final decision. The understanding that we have gained, having used some of the most advanced systems in the market to convert many microfiche projects, is information we can share with you to help you make the best decision. CONTACT US

Cost to Scan Microfiche: What Questions to Ask?

Microfiche Scanning Cost

If you are looking for microfiche scanning prices, including a case study which compares four microfiche scanning companies, click here. If you want to learn about which questions to ask to get an accurate microfiche scanning quote, read on!

microfiche scanning price

Here is a list of microfiche scanning questions to help with pricing:

What type of microfiche needs to be scanned?

The different types of microfiche are COM fiche, jacketed fiche, step-and-repeat . You can take a ruler and measure the film width if you are unsure of roll film size.

Do the images need to be indexed?

Generally clients just need virtual folders named by reel number or microfiche header label, however other times they would need data entry from fields, like SSN, Names, or Case Numbers.

What is the preferred file format?

Group IV TIFF, PDF, JPEG, Uncompressed TIFF, bi-tonal images, greyscale images, multi-tiffs, multi-PDFs, searchable OCR PDFs, or another image format? (Most clients used bi-tonal tiffs, but in recent years PDFs have become more popular). One more thing to consider: if your client is already using a document management system or you have your own document management software, you must comply to the requested file format. What is the output media? CD, DVD, external USB hard drive, FTP, or flash drive are all options.

What is the microfiche canning turnaround time?

When does the microfiche need to be shipped back, and at what priority? Can the microfiche be released all at once or in waves? Is there a deadline to deliver the images?

The crazy thing about the microfiche scanning industry is that there were no true standards. However, it does help to perform this information gathering task for many obvious reasons. Generation Imaging can assist you with free microfiche scanning quotes, and scan microfiche at the most competitive pricing rates in the industry. CONTACT US

Signs You Should Invest in Microfiche Scanning

When Should You Convert Microfiche?

Okay, so you either work with microfiche in your office OR you have come across a project which requires microfiche conversion. What are the signs saying you should invest in microfiche scanning?

You Have Too Many Microfiche

It may be hard to organize and work with thousands of microfiche cards on a daily basis or even to deal with the occasional microfiche request. On one end of the coin, you may have gotten used to dealing with so many microfiche- and perhaps it is even job security- but if you want to make your life easier and save your organization money, you might as well bite the bullet now. In fact, you may be surprised how inexpensive a microfiche conversion is compared to the labor already invested.

scan microfiche

Your Microfiche is Decaying

Microfiche will get damaged from overuse, light, poor humidity, chemicals, water, cockroaches, and poor storage. If the microfiche starts to smell badly (like vinegar) you need to scan that microfiche as soon as possible or risk catastrophic loss. If you are not currently using standard microfiche preservation techniques, you are in trouble.

How to Perform Microfiche Scanning

If you or your organization has COM fiche, 35mm or 16mm microfiche jackets, step and repeat microfiche, or other types of microfiche, I’m sure you have wondered about how to digitize microfiche to PDF. The simplest way is to simply e-mail or call a scanning company like Generation Imaging to get a microfiche scanning quote.

Microfiche scanning requires specialized machinery called microfiche scanners, manufactured by such companies as Mekel, Sunrise, NextScan, and others. Microfiche scanners are not easy to set up and require microfiche scanner maintenance plans, experienced labor, and a whole network configuration. They also cost a ton of money.

Converting microfiche to digital images makes your life easier. Many microfilm government RFP bids require microfiche conversions as well, so if you come across a microfiche conversion job, feel free to contact this scanning company and see how you’d like to partner up. CONTACT US

Myths About Transferring Microfiche to Digital Image

Microfiche Myths

There are a few misconceptions about microfiche in general and microfiche conversion. Here are some good ones:

People don’t use microfiche anymore

Do people still use microfiche? Actually, yes, they do. Schools still use 16mm microfiche files which contain your dreaded permanent record. City or country land records and blueprints are stored on 35mm microfiche. Electronic payroll records are exported to COM microfiche. The U.S. government gives veterans their service records on microfiche. Automobile and vehicle manuals exist on microfiche and are used by mechanics and part order companies.There are many industries which still use microfiche.

Microfiche scanning is expensive

Converting microfiche to digital images is not expensive if Generation Imaging is performing your project. Pricing is based on volume and larger volume microfiche projects are very cheap per image.Even if you only have one card or a one batch, the cost to convert microfiche is much lower than you would expect if you send the work to a microfiche scanning company. Now, if you buy a microfiche reader printer or scanner, you need to invest thousands of dollars in the microfiche machine alone.

Microfiche is microfilm

roll film

Microfiche means “little card”. Microfiche are flat plastic sheets with small images. Microfilm are rolls of film, which look like small movie reels. Confusing microfilm and microfiche is common. The less frequent all-encompassing term is “microform”, which covers all micrographic media. To make matters even more confusing, something microfiche was actually microfilm- cut into strips and placed in microfiche jackets.

Microfiche is not produced anymore

Believe it or not, but a quick look at government bids reveals that microfiche generation still happens today. Many states have data retention laws which require microfiche as hard copies for legal reasons and for disaster plans. (For example, imagine if one day an EMP bomb destroys our digital computer systems or the cloud.)

Microfiche lasts forever

microfiche vinegar

Although microfiche was originally created to preserve history and civilization, depending on how they are created, they can deteriorate if not stored correctly. There are many industry standard preservation techniques. The basic assumption of microfiche preservation was that they had to be stored in a climate controlled room and kept away from the elements. Unfortunately, because so many people do not follow these strict standards, microfiche can fade, smell like vinegar, become brittle, or actually lose their images. CONTACT US