Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Web 2.0 Expo 2007

There's an interesting conference/expo coming up: Web 2.0 Expo 2007 (April 15-18, 2007, San Francisco, California). I was planning on going there, but I can't make it. I'll just have to wait for the podcasts and slides to be published.

This situation led to the following thought: my experience is that you have to be at a conference or meeting to really get the central thoughts, the feeling the people are trying to get across. Nothing can substitute human interaction. But in this era of podcasts ((live) video and audio), broadcasting via the web, it does give you the opportunity to rethink whether you really should go to the conference (all the way in the USA...), because you can (practically) relive the conference via the internet. Does this lead to less conference visitors? I hope not.

Samuel

Monday, January 29, 2007

Linda Stone in HBR List of Breakthrough ideas for 2007

Linda Stone is an interesting person with interesting ideas. She coined the term 'continuous partial attention'. This is not the same as multitasking. But it's "an adaptive behavior that presumably allows us to keep pace with the never-ending bandwidth technology offers." She also signals more and more people that protest against the tyranny of tantalizing choices. (Relates well with Barry Schwarz's, "Less is more"!) I just read she is listed nr. 7 on the HBR list of Breakthrough ideas 2007!
We have come from information scarcity (pull) and are now loaded with information (push). The next step seems to be how we can get away from all the impulses, information, devices that bug us and make us feel miserable. Although I don't feel miserable yet I am very happy with technology such as RSS and social tagging that help you get the (new) information you want, find and remember paths through information and leave out all the rest. Stone predicts that people will be or are "yearning for a calmer existence" that leads/led people to adopt tools "that reduce information overload and support discernment."

If you want to learn more about her ideas, you can read more here (summary) or listen to her story here (held at the Etech 2006).

Samuel

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

IBM Connections and knowledge mapping

A couple of days ago IBM annouced their new collaboration suite: IBM Connections. It's planned to be shipped in the first quarter of 2007. What's in it?
"The IBM package includes five applications: profiles, where employees post information about their expertise and interests; communities, which are formed and managed by people with common interests; activities, which are used to manage group projects; bookmarks, where people share documents and Web sites with others; and blogs, where people post ongoing commentaries. "The business market is showing a lot of interest in using social networking tools to improve productivity. It's about helping people find experts and the information they need to get their jobs done," says Steve Mills, the general manager of the software group at IBM (IBM). The commercial version of the package is to be delivered in the second quarter.
(...)
During an IBM demonstration of Lotus Connections, it was clear that the product is easy to use and potentially powerful. Rather than relying on employees to load their work files into an old-fashioned knowledge management program, the new technology allows them to quickly attach electronic tags to important documents and interesting Web pages, and have them collected and updated behind the scenes by the software."
This packaging is interesting, and IBM is clearly going head on with Microsoft (Sharepoint). I'm curious what Connections looks like and how it works. (I couldn't find an IBM webpages that gives me more insight at the moment. So, we'll wait a while.)
I do have a question up front: the issues in knowledge mapping has not been: can we build/offer a tool in which we can share our expertise/hobbies? Lots of tools offer that. I think the issue is: how can we fill those tools easily and, most important, how can we keep that information up-to-date? Furthermore, my view on my knowledge/expertise is interesting to share, but it's even more interesting to know what others think of you? My expertise/knowledge is not only based on what I thing about it, but what my place in the social network looks like. E.g. do others know and experience my expertise in a certain area? I'm curious how Connections addresses these issues.


Samuel

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Trailfire in the enterprise


Not to long ago I started using Trailfire. Trailfire is a wonderful way to add annotations to webpages you look at regularly or run into. It allows you to give your context to webpages and helps you remember where you were browsing and what you were thinking when you read that page. It also helps you connect related pages together (you can flip between annotations). You can keep the trails to yourself and/or share them with other (even if they done have Trailfire).
But this is also very interesting for in the enterprise! For instance when your team is looking for and collecting information on a certain topic. Leaving trails can also help new
employees move through the large amount of information he/she has to go through and help him/her find the really important information he/she may not miss. The names of annotators helps them find the right people in the organisation to talk to.
You could even have a trail that starts inside the organisation and moves outside. Even if that trail is public outsiders can see it anyway (due to the firewall).

It would be even more interesting to also be able to add trails to other types of data/info, such as files, emails, etc. (Not only web/intranet pages). These often lack context too and are therefore hard to retrieve when you need them.

Samuel

Google's information architecture?

I love Google and use many of their products/services (Gmail, Reader, Blogger, Docs and Spreadsheets, Alerts, Maps, Desktop, Picasa, etc.). These tools compete directly with products as Outlook, Word, Excel, etc.
Although Google products are free and can also be used in enterprises, I haven't heard of many companies dumping Microsoft and using free web 2.0 stuff (from Google a.o.) from then on.
Anyway, I was wondering what Google's information architecture looks like. Of course reports, memo's, minutes, etc. are written at Google. Where do they store them? How do they share and distribute them? Do they have policies where Google employees should save their (draft) documents and which tools they should use to produce information? Do they have a knowledge manager or information architect? And how does he/she work?

I sent these questions to Google and hope to get some answers that I can share with you. I think it would be neat to know how they do it and why. Possibly inspiring too!

Samuel

Friday, January 19, 2007

New book by Nonaka and Ichijo!: Knowledge Creation and Management

This didn't come up in my feeds, but I accidentally ran into it:

There's a new book out by Ichijo & Nonaka (- you know, from "The Knowledge Creating Company", written with Takeuchi).
It's titled: "Knowledge Creation and Management: New Challenges for Managers" (2007).

Looks very interesting! It's not only written by them, but lots of great Knowledge Management thinkers have been asked to write one or more chapters. I ordered it and hope to read it soon and let you know what I think of it.

Samuel

Welcome!

Hello everybody!

Just started this blog! And I'm excited about it. This blog will be about my job as an information architect for a fairly large company called Océ. I'm not going to use this blog to tell you all the ins and outs of Océ (even if I was allowed to). But I want to give you my view on this very interesting topic and the just as interesting related topics. My role is to support document, information and knowledge processes in such a way that business processes are improved. My interests are therefore in information architecture in general, and specifically in information architecture methodology. Furthermore I like to read and learn about implementing document management systems, collaboration, web 2.0 (enterprise 2.0), knowledge management in general, etc.

Hope you enjoy reading my blog and I hope you will share your insights with me too!

See you around,
Samuel