Private document is
In other words, a document is evidence of an event or situation. It can be a text written on paper (or other material support such as cardboard) or a file stored on an electronic support.
A document can be used to record a relevant fact. For example, if a person completes his or her university studies, he or she may ask the educational institution for a written record of all subjects taken and grades achieved.
Likewise, a document can be the result of a work. For example, if a researcher conducts a study on the possible impact of pollution on the world economy, this will be expressed in a text. This would be an academic document.
It should also be noted that technology allows us to save and share a large amount of information contained in digital documents. This, using email, a pendrive or even the cloud.
Examples of documents
Up to this point, the notion of document is defined in a general sense, in such a way that a sculpture, a clay tablet or a compact disc all constitute documents. However, from the point of view of archival science and in order to establish which documents will be sent to the archives, it is not enough to recognize the document as an element associated or related to a medium that contains testimonial information and can be used for evidentiary purposes. Archives preserve documents, but these have differentiating characteristics that are directly related to their origin or origin, and therefore their elements must be clearly delimited.
The archival document is distinguished from documents in the generic sense by its genesis or origin, that is, by its birth. Archival documents, states Heredia Herrera (2013), are records of information framed by two natural foundations:
What a document is for
Traditionally, the medium of a document was paper and the information was entered by hand, using ink (this is what is called making a manuscript) or by a mechanical process (using a typewriter, or using a laser printer).
From an IT point of view, it is a file, but with certain attributes as it contains textual or graphical data created by the user with his computer – or mobile device, for example – using a program. The file is given a name and format to save it in a previously assigned directory, subdirectory or folder on the storage unit. It can be reopened when you need to access its contents, whether to print, modify or delete it. It is much more often referred to as just a file.
Any material object that carries, records or fixes, in itself, information, that is to say, the set formed by the container with its content; with the objective of conserving and transmitting such information in the domain of space and time in order to be used as a legal or evidentiary instrument, historical testimony, etc.
Characteristics of a document
In the case of organizations and institutions that carry out a vast and extensive work, documents will be a daily need of almost all the members of the same, which will demand that a serial type of work be carried out on them and they will be called documentary series, among which are included: correspondence, minute books, accounting books, among others.
Documents can also be classified into primary documents, which are those that contain original information from the author and have not been processed or modified by anyone other than the person responsible for them, secondary documents, which are those that have been processed, and tertiary documents, which are those secondary documents that have been processed.