By Jake Karnes, ECM Consultant at Zia Consulting
With an eye to the future, Ephesoft continues to deliver practical innovation which improves the capabilities and usability of its core platform, Ephesoft Transact. Ephesoft demonstrates this commitment to current and future customers with four new features: cross-section extraction, automatic data conversion, paragraph extraction, and automatic regular expression suggestions and creations.
Ephesoft INNOVATE 2016 brought together leading minds to discuss the latest industry advances. Software companies face the persistent challenge of delivering practical innovation while staying true to their product’s role in a customer’s organization. Ephesoft tackles this problem with a two-pronged approach. Ephesoft remains on the cutting edge of document capture technology with their new big data analytics platform—Ephesoft Insight. Insight promises to extract content and meaning from documents scattered across an organization using machine learning and patented text-based analysis. In addition to pushing the envelope with Insight, Ephesoft is continuing to expand and strengthen Ephesoft Transact.
Feature 1: Cross-Section Extraction
Ephesoft Transact, formerly Ephesoft Enterprise, adds several powerful features in the upcoming 4.1 release with roots in customer feedback and provide out-of-the-box functionality which previously required customization. One such feature is cross-section extraction. This technique uses the intersection of two keys to find the correct value. In the example below, the two keys are “Services Borrower Did Not Shop For” and “Borrower-Paid” which meet at the value “$236.55.” This triangulation using multiple keys allows for the extraction of values which are ill-suited for existing extraction methods such as table extraction.
Feature 2: Automatic Data Conversion
Another feature which comes from business use cases is automatic data conversion. This feature allows extracted dates and other values to be automatically normalized to a standard format. For example, a date extracted as “MAR 21 2016” can automatically be converted to “03/15/2016” and vice versa. Other possible data conversions include predefined suffixes and prefixes, data replacement, upper or lower case conversion, and more. One novel use for this functionality would be to clean up imperfect OCR results. The extraction rules could be defined to allow for missing or erroneous characters, and the values could then be corrected during this data conversion step by removing or substituting the known, correct character(s).
Feature 3: Automatic Regular Expression Suggestion and Creation
Another example of Ephesoft’s dedication to improving user experience by expanding Transact’s functionality is the new, automatic regular expression suggestion and creation. Ephesoft has recognized the pain of writing regular expressions by hand, and helps minimize these efforts by suggesting regular expressions automatically. These suggestions are sourced from Ephesoft’s own library of common regular expressions, such as emails, dollar amounts, and dates. But Ephesoft can even help you create custom regular expressions based on the examples provided during extraction training. This strikes a powerful balance between the flexibility to write your own and the ease of having them automatically suggested or created for you. The usefulness of regular expressions is now unlocked without burdening the user with learning the complex regular expression notation. As an added bonus, this feature is already included in the latest release of Transact, and further information can be found at Ephesoft’s wiki page here or in a video demonstration below.
Feature 4: Paragraph Extraction
Paragraph extraction demonstrates Ephesoft Transact capabilities of mining valuable information from unstructured documents. This features enables the user to define values to be extracted from within larger bodies of text, without specific keywords or fixed locations. As an example, consider the following sections of a mortgage note:
Paragraph extraction can be used to extract each of the highlighted values. Even values which wrap around multiple lines (e.g. “Super Mortgage Inc”) can be handled with ease. Previously, this would have required custom scripting or a complex combination of different extraction techniques. Paragraph extraction allows the user to unlock information from their documents which may have been unused before.
These features indicate that Ephesoft’s innovation is not limited to their groundbreaking analytics platform. They continue to implement practical innovation which is equally important for new and existing customers. These features provide straightforward solutions to common pain points. By inviting and accepting feedback from their customers and partners, Ephesoft is pushing the capture industry forward on multiple fronts.
Jake Karnes is an ECM Consultant at Zia Consulting. He extends and integrates Ephesoft and Alfresco to create complete content solutions. In addition to client integrations, Jake has helped create Zia stand-alone solutions such as mobile applications, mortgage automation, and analytic tools. He’s always eager to discuss software to the finest details, you can find Jake on LinkedIn.