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Shawna McAlearney

Shawna McAlearney is the Marketing Specialist for Appligent Document Solutions.
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PDF/A Competence Center Newsletter: Issue 14


Current News:
CeBIT: The PDF/A Competence Center shows methods for reliable long-term archiving
Main Article: Scanning Services and PDF/A
PDF/A Competence Center Members Introduce Themselves: ASSERVO
New Members






Daniel Schimdt, asservo

Dear Readers,

For customers of our scanning services, a practical and user-friendly data format is a deciding criteria for maximum use and high acceptance. We as a company have for years valued working with the PDF and PDF/A data formats. Their enormous flexibility, their increasing propagation and the long-term stability associated with them are, amongst the many other user advantages, the most prevalent quality attributes.

Our customers are looking for a manageable, user friendly format that enables efficient operations. At b u. s microfilmdienst gmbh (microfilm services ltd) we safeguard information up to and including entire archives for our partners and customers. An error-free data protection and access for all users of the customer’s information system must be ensured in the process. The use of PDF/A makes this possible. What stands out in particular is that good to outstanding results are achieved even when the requirements for handling data or converting it are minimal. LuraTech has been a reliable partner of our company for years. With the help of their software tools we have been able to achieve a quantum leap in optimizing digital long-term archives, putting the “icing on the cake” in a manner of speaking.

Consistent with our efforts, we became the first scanning service provider to join the PDF/A Competence Center, doing so in January 2007. As a middle-sized digitalizing and archive service provider we thereby contribute to the promotion of PDF/A. This networking makes the continual technical advancement and a professional exchange of ideas possible for us. Furthermore it gives us as a company, in combination with the PDF/A Competence Center, the chance to convince our customers of the geniality of the PDF/A format. Our combined efforts have already begun to yield fruit: numerous requests for proposal are now identifying PDF/A as the desired file format to be delivered. This pleasant and welcome development in the still often heterogeneous IT landscape has been achieved thanks to the practical, customer-friendly and optimal standard format.

Daniel Schmidt,
President, ASSERVO, b u. s microfilmdienst gmbh


CeBIT: The PDF/A Competence Center shows methods for reliable long-term archiving

Once again this year, visitors to CeBIT can learn all about the options, advances and benefits involving PDF/A. At Stand D34 in Hall 3, members of the PDF/A Competence Center will be available at four adjacent kiosks to answer questions on the ISO standard for long-term archiving with PDF. They will also present current solutions for reliable storage of documents, print data streams, e-mail messages and graphics with PDF/A, enabling CeBIT attendees to gain comprehensive insight into how a consistent archiving strategy can be implemented with PDF/A – from the inflow of information all the way to output management. The PDF/A Competence Center experts will discuss the benefits of the format in detail, such as its long-term readability, unification of format, full text search capability, use of metadata and fidelity of layout.

Specific PDF/A products and solutions will be shown by Compart AG for output management and LuraTech Europe GmbH for converting incoming documents. Finally, the exhibit of Zöller & Partner GmbH will provide objective advice on ECM strategies with PDF/A.

The panel discussion “Pros and Cons of PDF/A” at 6:00 pm on March 3rd at the ECM forum promises to be exciting. Management consultant Bernhard Zöller will moderate the discussion with Jürgen Biffar, president of DocuWare AG, Harald Grumser, Chairman of the PDF/A Competence Center and Carsten Heiermann, managing director of LuraTech Europe GmbH, on the significance of PDF/A.


Scanning Services and PDF/A

As a scanning service provider, we encountered a lot of uncertainty in the past when discussing the topic of PDF/A with our customers. It was our responsibility as a full-service company to explain the advantages of PDF/A to these customers. Today we are finding that increasingly more scanning projects have a concrete requirement for the digital long-term archiving format PDF/A.

The digital archiving of large volumes of documents, that we for example implement at large customers sites like TÜV Rheinland and DKV, requires a specific approach.

The challenge with such tasks lies in optimizing the quality and the time required for the digital conversion, and in the end naturally also minimizing the costs.

The quality aspect most often builds the foundation of the project, guaranteeing the user that the digital result is a 1:1 replica of the original.

By using the extremely high compression possibilities offered with PDF and PDF/A , an important quality factor for graphics – scanning in color – with an optimal reproduction in combination with small data files can be achieved. We can also ensure the depiction of document interrelations using PDF format. In addition, PDF format offers the possibility of an automatic full-text search (through OCR).

Our strategy for every individual project, which is based on employing qualified personal and high quality hardware and software, takes the following points into consideration:

  • Analyze and fine-tune the customer requirements
    (which results in the concrete conversion work being defined)
  • Split the work into independent subtasks
  • Individually optimize the realization of each subtask
  • Merge the subtasks as much as possible using an automated workflow
  • Output in PDF/A – in order to save the converted files optimally with respect to quality and long-term security

The classical decision criteria for digitalizing documents at our customers TÜV Rheinland (Emission Protection Department) and DVK (Building Management Department) were:

  • optimal graphics conversion – hence color
  • possibility for full-text search
  • long-term stability of the digitalized dossiers

Based on a realistic sampling in combination with an attractive file size and after intensive consulting, the decision was taken to implement the projects using PDF/A format.



The b u. s. microfilmdienst gmbh (microfilm services ltd) is a family-owned and -operated business in its second generation. We have expanded to being present in four locations, all of which are constantly in contact with each other through our main office in Cologne-New Ehrenfeld.

As a system and service provider we offer a wide spectrum of services, most notably scanning services and all forms of archiving, but also micrographics, reproduction graphics, copying, plotting, system consulting and the sale of machines. Our full-service portfolio is rounded off with comprehensive and professional consulting.

With our full-service label ASSERVO, we at b u. s microfilmdienst gmbh have made it our goal to optimally prepare the often highly sensitive and irreplaceable information from business relevant data and documents, and make them available for sustained periods of time.

It is important to us that we provide a valuable service from the first discussion on until the optimal solution or “ready-to-use” archive has been realized. First we gain a complete overview of the actual archive and the customers’ processes. Based on this we then work out an individual concept, including the employing of meaningful samples.

We have been working together with a large number of our customers for years and enjoy a collegial partnership.

Our customer’s success is our motivation.

Our services include, amongst other things:

  • analog and digital archiving
  • scanning services
  • microfilming
  • copying and plotting
  • software
  • hardware
  • consumable items
  • service and support

For further information please visit our website: www.asservo.de


We welcome the following companies as members in the PDF/A Competence Center:
E-file, United Arab Emirates
Information Fort, United Arab Emirates
Technosolutions, Italy
Four Pees, Belgium
Qualysoft, Austria
Krill S.r.l., Italy

Tags: CeBIT, DKV, OCR, TÜV Rheinland, scanning services
Categories: Archives & Libraries, PDF, PDF/A