iSixSigma

The Anti-IIOT Shop?

This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Tamela Serensits 4 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #238881

    Tamela Serensits
    Participant

    I’ve done several plant tours and consistently see paper as a means of collecting data (alongside some great examples of machine-to-db direct collection too). But, pen and paper is great for a shop floor because it is so durable and requires zero training.

    So, if a facility wants to keep using paper data collection, what solutions are out there to get this data into electronic form so it can be analyzed by software like Minitab?

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    #238889

    Joe Wojniak
    Participant

    I’m not sure if my previous reply will post, so this may be a duplicate:
    OCR software is needed to convert the hand-written paper to a data format. Hand-writing needs to be pretty clear and simple, no cursive. Here are some links that show up from a quick search:
    https://www.simpleocr.com/ocr_to_excel/
    https://www.anysoftwaretools.com/convert-scanned-pdf-to-excel/

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    #238893

    Robert Butler
    Participant

    I had to look up the definition of IIOT – and the manager in charge of obfuscation proliferation strikes again … :-). If all you have is paper entries then someone somewhere is going to have to sit down and transcribe the data into some kind of electronic spreadsheet.

    I suppose their might be some kind of document scanner that could do this but my guess would be a scanner like that would require uniformity with respect to paper entries – something like a form that is always filled out the same way. Even if you could do that there would have to be a lot of data cleaning because paper records, even when in a form, can and will have all sorts of entries that do not meet the requirements for a given field. For example – say one field is supposed to be a recorded number for some aspect of the process. I guarantee you you will get everything from an actual number, for example 10, to anything approximating that entry: 10.0 , >10, <10, ten, 10?, na, ” ,etc.

    There are some ways to approach a data set of this kind. Since the process will have changed over time (and, most likely, the reporting and measurement systems will have as well) the first block of data to examine would be the most recent. Let’s say you have a year’s worth of data for a given process. First talk to the people doing the recording. The focus will be on their memories with respect to times during the last year when the process was functioning properly and times when it wasn’t.

    Using their memories as a guide, go into the paper records and pull samples from those time periods, find someone who can do the data entry, and transcribe the data and analyze what you have. If the memory of the people on the line is any good (and in my experience it is usually very good) your sample will provide you with an excellent initial picture of what the process has done and where it is at the moment.

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    #238888

    Joe Wojniak
    Participant

    Many scanners have OCR capability, or you can look into specialized OCR software to get better performance. A quick search found the following-
    https://www.anysoftwaretools.com/convert-scanned-pdf-to-excel/
    https://www.simpleocr.com/ocr_to_excel/
    It’d be great to hear what you decide to use, and how well it works.

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    #238947

    Tamela Serensits
    Participant

    Thanks for the recommendations! Since I am a Windows user, I’m going to try Soda PDF first. I’ll let you know how it goes!

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