Magazine article Information Today

Nstein Targets the E-Publishing Industry: President Randall Marcinko Leads the Focus on Automated Indexing Solutions. (IT Interview)

Magazine article Information Today

Nstein Targets the E-Publishing Industry: President Randall Marcinko Leads the Focus on Automated Indexing Solutions. (IT Interview)

Article excerpt

Randall Marcinko has been an entrepreneur in the library and information technology field for over 20 years. Having forged a solid network of business relationships during that time, he is well-known by database producers, online services, and e-publishers. Marcinko founded Dynamic Information Corp., a full-service information brokerage that has specialized in document delivery since 1986. After selling Dynamic Information to EB-SCO Industries in 1994, Marcinko headed up EBSCOdoc, its new document delivery division. He remained at EBSCO through March 1996 as he implemented the first complete document delivery interface on the Web. Since then, Marcinko has led Marcinko Enterprises, Inc. into consulting and back-office development for primary publishers, secondary publishers, and other information industry players.

Marcinko has divested his other businesses and is now working full time as the new president of Nstein Technologies, Inc., a Montreal-based company that offers categorizing and indexing products. He talked with me recently about the company's technology and its new focus on providing solutions to the e-publishing market.

Q: What attracted you to work for Nstein?

A: My former company, Marcinko Enterprises, Inc., had worked with various clients that needed a solution for indexing. As we worked with clients that had larger and larger problems and greater backfile sizes, there became a real need for computer-aided indexing (CAI) that wasn't going to be filled by manual indexing. In late 2000, we started working with UPI (United Press International)--there was no way to make it work for them with manual indexing. We started doing surveys of companies in the CAI field--companies like Nstein--and to my surprise, in every case, Nstein came out on top. It was a company I hadn't heard of. They brought me up to Montreal to look at it. Because I was there as a consultant working for a client, we really kicked the tires. I had no intention of working for them or of even using them at first. At the beginning they were the new kid on the block, but I was really fascinated by what they were doing. Eventually, they were providing solutions that were very successful for my clients and made me look good. Ultimately I did a little consulting for [Nstein] and in the fall of 2001 we started talking about what else was possible. They offered me the opportunity to become president and see what I could do to make their operations grow.

Q: I can see why they were drawn to you, given all your contacts working in the industry over a span of many years. You have worked with, consulted for, or been involved with--in licensing or some operation--almost every major player in the information industry.

A: Correct. I think that was one of the major reasons why there was synergy. They had a technology that had grown well before I came, to the point that it was ready to be commercialized. My coming on board is at a time when the technology is quite mature and ready to be seen in prime time. What's needed now is to take the technology and do something with it that is definable, with a focus, and that meets the needs of clients in an industry that is ready to buy. I think my background-both with relationships and deals I've done and my familiarity with indexing software-is a good match for what they need.

Q: What do you see that sets Nstein's technology apart from that of competitors?

A: Let me give you a sketch of what Nstein does so we can get to the point of where indexing is possible. Nstein takes textual documents and runs them through the Nstein engine. In the first phase we extract concepts out of the document. We feel we use the three leading technologies for doing this. We use linguistic analysis, statistical analysis, and lexicon-based techniques. Using all three approaches lets us extract the richest and most comprehensive group of concepts within a document. The concepts also have a ranking of which are most important. …

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