How Digitizing Microfilm & Microfiche Bring Them into the Modern Age

For decades, we have relied on microfilm and microfiche for information storage. There was no better solution to decrease the amount of storage space required to retain old articles and data indefinitely while keeping them readily accessible. Today, microfilm and microfiche continue to be dependable and long-lasting resources for information collectors of all types.

Unfortunately, maintaining microfilm, microfiche, and the machinery necessary to read them is becoming increasingly challenging with every passing year. Digitization is definitely a step toward the future.  

There are two ways to go about it. If you have the time and equipment, you can take it up as a DIY project. However, using microfiche and microfilm scanning services is the best solution for dealing with this transition. Read on to learn all about digitizing microfilm and microfiche.  

Digitizing Microfilm & Microfiche

For optimal use of your microfiche data, digital copies must retain the original readability and clarity of the microfiche images. This necessitates rigorous quality assurance methods at every stage of the digitization process.

You should also ensure that the generated digital photos are appropriately classified and categorized to facilitate quick and easy data retrieval. The text from the microfiche title area, the roll and frame numbers, and any data retrieved from the images themselves are all crucial identifiers that must be transferred precisely into the image information. Take a look at how it is done. 

  1. Scan the films using a scanner.
  2. Sort the tiles and arrange them into subfolders by strip. Sorting is an automated process that may operate on several computers or servers simultaneously
  3. Put up a low-resolution preview of the physical media.
  4. Use computer vision to locate the frames of documents and mark the strips on which identification is uncertain.
  5. Review the flagged strips to find gutter and line inconsistencies. If operators evaluate the issues, they can save a substantial amount of time. For larger projects, numerous operators carry out this process simultaneously.
  6. Use automated software to “clip frames” from the larger image. By selecting only specific areas of a picture to be copied, the program may use image processing techniques to create high-quality digital copies.
  7. Address scratches, warping, lines, and boxes. One of the most critical aspects of image processing is fixing up digital photos to better serve as permanent or temporary evidence. Remember, improved OCR performance is typically the focus of quick solutions. Corrections are made permanently to the digitized microfilm to make it readable by humans.

Why Digitize Microfilm & Microfiche

Until the 1990s, microfilm, microfiche, aperture cards, and other micro-formats were the norm for archiving. Many businesses still use cumbersome and expensive microfilm readers to access their libraries. Luckily, microfiche and microfilm scanning services bring historical collections into the 21st century. 

Organizations can save money and time by converting data to lightweight and widely-supported formats. Despite their small size, microfilm and microfiche can be a hassle to store. The film must be stored in a dry, temperature-controlled environment free of any external elements, such as high acidity levels, to prevent damage and decay. For this reason, you will need a specific area in your facility that is used solely for archiving films.

A high-resolution scan of a single page can take anywhere from 150 to 600 kilobytes. With modern technology, a person can keep their whole book collection on a single hard drive. This creates a lot of extra room that can be put to better use elsewhere in the company.

Scanning microfiche and microfilm is also useful because it allows for the indexing of vital metadata, making it feasible for users to easily access and retrieve information on nearly any device, which raises the value of the digital archives.

By using text-based searches, it takes almost no time at all to locate a certain file amongst millions in a digital collection. Now you won’t have to dig through filing cabinets or microfilm archives to get the picture you need. Savings on labor expenses will accumulate rapidly as a result of your team’s increased efficiency and productivity.

Last but not least, using a digital archive doesn’t call for any extra procedures or training time necessary with microfilms. This means there is no longer any need for costly training or monitoring of handling procedures.

Why Hire a Microfiche and Microfilm Scanning Services

Hiring a professional microfiche/microfilm or document scanning service like Smooth Solutions can eliminate anxiety and uncertainty. We can digitize your microfilm collection and upload the files to your cloud storage system in any of the most common picture digital formats.

Now that you know the many advantages of digitizing your microfilm or microfiche, please contact one of our microfilm experts for a scanning quote. In addition to receiving a free pricing estimate for your project, this is also your chance to learn more about us and ask any questions you may have so that you can make an informed decision about your data storage requirements.

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