Indexing Tables in Kofax-Based Environments

We recently had a customer who needed to migrate off of an aging and highly customized Capture/indexing/workflow one-off solution. At the center of many of their form types in this system was a repeatable field collection object that functioned much like how you would expect a .NET DataTable control to function – values could be added horizontally to the current “row”, and at the end of it you could hit enter and a new “row” would be added. As you moved through, you also had the ability to validate the line item as a whole. In other words, nothing too out-of-the-ordinary.

Unfortunately, this stood out as a red flag for both myself and my coworker when we first saw it, since we were migrating the client to Kofax Capture. There’s nothing inherently wrong with Kofax’s flagship product, in fact it is an excellent tool for getting content where it needs to be, often in record time. One thing it doesn’t do well out-of-the-box, however, is table fields. Defining one looks normal enough, but when you actually get the chance to index them, each column ends up being a standard index field. Needless to say, turning the table 90 degrees counter-clockwise and forcing keyers to manually delimit values is not an ideal experience, especially when 99% of your form is tables that need to be indexed. Continue reading

Development Mindset when utilizing ILINX eForms

Those familiar with software development should know the Waterfall software development methodology very well. For those who don’t, it’s basically this:
1. Perform discovery/gather requirements
2. Build out the solution based on the requirements provided
3. Perform User Acceptance Testing (UAT)
4. Correct issues found during testing and resubmit for UAT
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 as necessary
6. When the solution is accepted, prepare to move it into Production and do so
7. Support as necessary post-Production deployment

As a rule, we try to stay close to this approach when working through customer engagements, and regardless of the product we’re implementing it usually works very well. Continue reading

Exporting Records Using KTM Medical Claims Add-on & Kofax Export Connector

Kofax provides an add-on pack for their Transformation Modules product to handle CMS-1500 (formerly HCFA) and CMS-1450 (alternatively, UB-04) medical claims forms called the KTM Medical Claims Add-on package. Related to this package is the Kofax Export Connector for Medical Claims. This Export Connector allows for the data captured off of said forms to be formatted in the HIPAA-compliant EDI/ASC X12 837 formats (to be exact, 837 Professional for the CMS1500 and 837 Institutional for the UB04).

Continue reading

KTM TDS Model Building

Are you tired of separator sheets?  Tired of wasted paper and countless hours of flipping through pages and inserting a barcode sheet at the start of a new document just to take it out after the batch is scanned or leave it in the batch and have more paper to store?  Why not have the computer do the work for you?  That’s the idea behind the Project Planner module in KTM.  There is a standard separation functionality built into KTM that works very well on structured and semi-structured documents but when you have more complex separation rules the Project Planner component of KTM is what you need.

Continue reading

Kofax KTM Dictionary Gotcha on Dates

In KTM there is a nifty feature to search the entire document for a date field. It will recognize all dates existing on the form and with some other snazzy logic you can find the date you are looking for. If it is nearby the word “recieved”, then you probably have a recieve date. Easy, right?

Okay, sometimes dates get a little more tricky. “3/17/2011“, “3-17-20011” and “MAR 17, 2001” are all valid date strings. Any of those formats could be found on your document. In KTM there is a nifty feature to search for the string “MAR” and replace it with a “3” when searching for dates. You use it in your locator’s regular expression. You can setup your own dictionary of months to look for “March” or “Mar” (or “Marzo” if you need internationalization).

Here’s the gotcha. I recently found text in an OCR’d document like this: “19 NOV2008“. It’s a bit of an odd string. The OCR engine didn’t think there was enough space between the “NOV” and the “2008” to put an actual space character in the ORC’d text. So, I can read it, but KTM can’t. The nifty feature to search for the string “NOV” fails because it is only looking at whole words, those with whitespace on either side. Unfortunately, there is no option in the KTM dictionary setup to change this.

Here’s the fix. Modify the default KTM regular expression from this:

[0-3]?\d§English_Months_Abr§([12]\d{3}|\d{2})

to this:

[0-3]?\d\s*(jan|feb|mar|apr|may|jun|jul|aug|sep|oct|nov|dec)\s*[0-3]?\d

You can now make the space character optional in your regular expression search. You are no longer using the month dictionary, but that’s okay. This logic is only to locate a date, not translate it from a string to a date when found.

Problem solved.

 

Kofax 9.x – They’ve finally done it… Almost

I have been working with the Kofax Capture product for over ten years now. To prove that, let me tell you the configuration on one of my first installs. I remember setting up a Bell and Howell 3338 scanner (you know, the one that required a cherry picker to get out of the box and on to the desk) with the Kofax KF board and Kofax Capture version 2.x. Ah yes, I look back fondly on the old days of deploying a scanner with the Kofax card and software. I know it has been out for a while now, but I recently started working with version 9 of Kofax Capture and I am pleased to say that they have finally addressed some of the Kofax gotchas that have been plaguing us for years.

For starters, they made client deployment 100% easier by creating the MSI package. I can’t tell you how many conversation I have had with client admins that go like this:

Me: No we don’t have a SMS or other type deployment package you can use, but you can make your own.

Client Admin: (Furrows brow) Huh?

I will be much happier when those conversations are a little less embarrassing. Now the workstations can be deployed using Microsoft SMS, Group Policy, IBM Tivoli, Symantec Altiris, HP Openview, or whatever deployment suite you use. Kofax has only tested SMS, but Continue reading

To Classify or Not to Classify

I recently was asked to help with a client’s KTM (Kofax Transformation Modules) project, because they were not pleased with the percentages of valid and/or correct extraction fields. My first question was, “Are you using subclasses?”  The answer was, “No.”  Subclassifying your top forms is an easy way to greatly improve your extraction results.

What I mean by that is instead of trying to use a single locator to find data from all of your documents with a “one size fits all” approach, you can use subclasses to first classify the document and then tune your locators specific to that form to look in a precise location for the information. For example, let’s say you need to find a “Case Number” off of all of your forms. Some forms might have the word “Case Number” above the text you need to extract. Others might have the word “Number” to the left of the data. Another might not have any text around the data to key off of at all. It’s difficult to add enough rules in one locator to catch all the possible scenarios. Furthermore, there are times when adding rules to help find data on one form will actually give you negative results from another. Subclasses can help by allowing you to create a specific locator to zero in on the information that you are looking for. Continue reading