The SharePoint Las Vegas conference is serious business. There have been and will be some serious announcements made over the course of it. However, there has been and will be announcements that just make you ask “How cool is that?!”
One of those is the beta launch of Capturx Forms for SharePoint from Adapx that will make automatic data ingestion into SharePoint 2010 as simple as signing you name. That’s because this is exactly what it does. It enables users to upload information into SharePoint as it is (manually) written using an electronic pen, via Bluetooth and a cell phone.
Designed principally for people working remotely (or at least remote to their SharePoint environment), this pen converts handwriting into structured data and puts it into SharePoint 2010 thus making it accessible to everyone.
Natural Information Capture
Designed by Seattle-based Adapx, which describes itself as a “natural interface software company”, it specializes in information capture and collaboration through its Capturx range of products.
The Capturx range basically turns digital pens and papers into an extension of your desktop and can integrate with Microsoft Office, CAD and GIS systems without having to move through cumbersome file formats in the conversion process.
The obvious use that springs to mind is in medical practice, where patient information and prescriptions can be automatically captured. But it can equally be used in courts, or local government or anywhere that collaborating teams need to access written records quickly.
The electronic pen itself looks and even feels like a regular ballpoint pen, the company says, but contains a digital sensor and image microprocessor.
As you write, or follow the lines of a map with the pen, the nib automatically scans your movements in conjunction with a digital watermark at a rate of 75 snapshots per second, effectively giving the impression of scanning while you write.
Adapx's electronic pen
The information can be then stored in the pen until you get a chance to upload it, or can be transmitted via your cell phone and, with Capturx for SharePoint, captured in SharePoint 2010.
This is more than novelty software, however, and comes with a number of features that should make it attractive where legal requirements dictate how information is stored and used.
- Information is accessible as converted data or in the original handwriting, and aggregated in SharePoint 2010 lists
- With the digital watermark, the date and time the original (written) document was created is recorded
- Searchable handwritten text in SharePoint 2010
- Data captured can be accessed and managed the same way as another other data
- No intermediary file formats or proprietary servers needed
If you’re interested in catching a Capturx Forms demo and you are in Las Vegas, Adapx is at booth 726. If not, you can always contact Adapx directly. Just bear in mind, though, that it is still in beta.