The Editor's page
Former users of this website will have noted many changes since it was
first launched in 1999 but 2017 has seen the most dramatic revision to date
and a change of title from the Encyclopedia of Document Management to
Document Management Today.
Over the years this site had become so large that it was difficult
to manage and we were receiving suggestions for a new website devoted solely
old speciality - micrographics. We have therefore taken the logical
step of removing the micrographic content from this site and adding it to a
new website entitled Microfilm
Today. Most of the other sections of the former Encyclopedia have been
retained with the exception of the Guide chapters which attracted few
visitors. The entire content is being updated - a mammoth task that will
take several months.
We have reformatted every
page to permit display on an iPhone or similar device. The site has been
tested on a variety of small screen devices and it seems to be performing well, but we are
always grateful for feedback and hope that users will report any problem.
Many visitors come to our site via the search engines and land on the
exact page they require. Visitors to our Home page previously had to
click once to reach an index page and then select the page they wanted from
that index. This was acceptable on a PC but we know that users sometimes
have difficulty in making selections on very small screens so It is now possible to access any part of the site
in one click from the Home
page. We have re-spaced all links to permit easier access and the address
section now spreads the alphabetical selection buttons over three rows
instead of two. In some cases the new layout is less
attractive, but it eliminates one step in many searches and we hope that it will be
welcomed as an improvement. To enable users to jump around the site without
returning to the Home page, all of the index buttons at the head
of each page have been retained.
This is the eighteenth year in the life of the Encyclopedia and it has
attracted nearly a million page references during that time. Alternative
sources of information have proliferated during recent years, all of them
providing some answers to questions within their scope, but very few attempt
to list all UK sources while some on-line directories only list advertisers
or members of an association. Search engines often publish repeated entries
for advertisers amongst the early results and include large numbers of
irrelevant answers. In one recent test we entered "A2 document scanner UK"
into a popular search engine and got 410,000 results! In fairness www.ggbaker.com was the first listing on page one, but the next seven entries
were for UK service houses offering document scanning facilities - not
hardware. A local sales agent for two major suppliers was number eight. The first
entry for a prime UK supplier of A2 scanners was on page 3 and the next was on page 8!
We try to have enough sub-categories to ensure that there are only a
manageable number of results from any search and that all results are appropriate.
As an example document scanners are broken into five mutually exclusive groups
based on their maximum input size. Each product is only listed once - under
the name of its manufacturer. If the actual manufacturer has no sales office in
the UK we also list the prime UK agent or distributor. There may, of course,
be hundreds of sales outlets in the UK offering the same product, but
selection of an appropriate machine would not be assisted by
Compressing the width of web pages inevitably increases their height.
Some listings - such as UK office document scanning facilities - are very
long indeed when viewed on an iPhone. We list the county where each service
is located in a separate column on the right of each page to assist users,
but some marketing managers may wish to take advantage of our very low
advertising charges to purchase a priority listing and appear at the head of
each relevant section.
Whenever a supplier informs us of a change of address or a new product
launch we can almost always amend the site within 24 hours, but it is
difficult to comb through hundreds of websites, comparing their content to
what we already have in this directory and making all necessary changes. We try to visit
every supplier's site at least once a year and make any obvious updates, but
suppliers with free entries should check that their entries are
comprehensive and accurate and let us know of any necessary changes. There is
no charge for unlimited alterations and relevant additions but we do need to
be told. Sponsors of the site can rely on us to monitor their entries fairly
frequently, but it does no harm to draw our attention to any change of
address or the launch of a new product or service.