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Progetto Data: yesterday, today, tomorrow


The Progetto Data is undergoing a further phase of its development; its importance can only be evaluated retrospectively, or in the near future.

2006 The Intuition: The IT evolution seems that it has forgotten its fundamental bases, denying or reducing their existence as a mere accessory of low importance. I.T. is justified and rendered useful by the data, the contents, and the messages that it transmits. Precisely these, are the least considered to privilege the packaging through the way that it is represented.

From this, the need to produce a project which specifically takes care of them: the data The human knowledge is, and for a long time will be, preserved on paper or on another non computerized system. The procedure that is used for the transposition from paper to electronic data, frequently result to be organized occasionally, depending exclusively on the needs at that particular moment. Data inputting is often made by improvised personnel who are not always adequately trained.
Anyway, while data inputting is a second rate activity, the results which are obtained from the data (the analysis, the graphics, the ability to interpret complex phenomena and more) are an annuity of highly qualified personnel, who are well compensated, and socially esteemed.
The Progetto Data tries to change this logic. This involves of improving the data entry activity, even through the creation of an innovative and advanced instrument to improve the obtained data and enhance the value of the persons carrying out the work.
Thanks to a first funding from the Fondazione del Monte di Bologna e Ravenna, a feasibility study on the first product devised in the Progetto data environment was produced. It is hypothesized to produce a web instrumentation which consents personnel, even if lacking programming skills, to implement tables and insertion masks with relative support database to perform online data inputting. In this project there was also predicted the extraction of data from uploaded images, to be inserted in the appropriate mask.
In 2008, with the substantial support of the fondazione CARISBO, the project which will be denominated as DED (Data Entry Designer) was actually realized. The result was more flattering than the expectations. It was presented in HANDImatica 2008 and raised the interest of the sector’s operators, educators and some curiosity from everyone.
Since it consists of a completely Web software, usable with the main browsers that are normally used, it presents itself as an excellent tool for teleworking. The handicap accessibility taken care of in all the minor details renders it particularly adequate for disabled persons to work from home.
This fact consents Progetto Data to reach another objective: encourage work integration of disadvantaged people, even through teleworking.
Virtual coop is the first user of this tool, and already from autumn 2008 created two remote workstations for data inputting, for a new job acquired during the year.

Now, in 2009, thanks to the contribution of the fondazione CARISBO, the second phase of DED, with which we sought to give the software major depth and professional quality, to promote the immediate and efficient use in a working environment.
In particular, the following functions have been implemented:

User profiles (access controls, application management, authorisation levels, and user’s authorisation level management).

The option of dynamic layout personalisation (information management)
Control management of data validation, verification and validation of the inserted data.
Work Monitoring of every user

Furthermore, a new environment for the transcription of spoken audio (dictations, seminar interventions or conferences, etc.) was organized, a single web page for reading files, and a form to carry out the transcription is predicted. The innovative aspect of the application consists in its accessibility, which is also offered to the unsighted, who will be able to use only the keyboard to listen or move the audio forward and backward, understand the content and write it in the form, working in complete autonomy and professional efficiency.

The site statistics tells us that we have had a certain number of accesses from all over the world, particularly from Pakistan and India, which are emerging countries where young people are particularly interested in IT.

This observation and the strong evolution imprinted to the software, induced us to translate the site, creating a parallel version in English, in a way doing an activity not predicted from the original project and entirely at virtual coop’s expense, but it seemed right and proper as a sign of respect and consideration towards our financing bodies and all the persons who have visited and used our site.

The evolution of Progetto Data is in most part tied with how much will emerge in the presentation seminar event, which will take place on the 25th of November 2009 near the residence of Provincia di Bologna. However, any road taken cannot neglect a need, which is emerging with force already in this conclusive phase of the realization of this second project. Presently the inserted data and the scanned images do not remain on the site where ded2 is installed, but are exported to local and used on other software. It is highlighted in an always more flaunted manner the need to conserve, in a provisional or definitive way, the processed material in an organized and available way on the site itself.

Therefore what shall we do? An electronic archive? A document flow manager? We’ll see. For now we’ll enjoy DED 2 and every one of us gives his contribute to improve it.