Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Hostile Takeover of the Social Web: Ground for conquest!


The Web is suppose to be just that; The Web. But today it looks like the Web is being redefined again by Web of Social Connectivities. This is subtle difference but a significant one and this is why:

The Web is foremost a physical architecture about distributed nodes that can be connected to each other directly through IP addresses. In this fundamental and original model, everyone can store information and access information stored on other nodes. Basically central storage is not required, and the information is controlled by its owner. But when search engines came about and crawled theses nodes to make a centralized index, a worrisome transformation occurred... information was copied, captured and ranked centrally. The search engines appeared as giant switchboards when in fact they copied everything and pointed out the sources of origin for us to access (you would be surprised at how many people don’t know that the Web is copied and stored by Google). We basically reverted to the mainframe model unbeknownst to us. And now come the Social Web where the connections about our private communities of interest are the next thing to be centralized and capitalized upon. Once again, as recently announced by Google, Bing, Facebook and Twitter our relationships and connections are being indexed and centralized to strengthen search at the expense of privacy.

Is this our only option to be connected and find information? The answer is “no”. In the late 90s and early 2000s many options where emerging that could have ensured privacy and leverage the Physical Web. Solutions like Groove, created by Ray Ozzie (also the creator of Lotus Notes), a peer-to-peer solution that only acted as an IP switchboard for content located on its users’ computers. Napster was also very successful at distributed file sharing but made the mistake to challenge record industry. Sun Microsystem has an open source peer-to-peer protocol called Jxta for developers to build such solutions. Many others who tried to build a Web of information routing that was true to the Physical Web have failed because they were disruptor to the mega-empires of centralized data and distribution channels that were emerging at the time. The record distribution industry was possibly the culprit of this mainframe vision tipping point (unbeknown to itself).

So if today you have not gone into your Facebook privacy settings and ensured that your web index is toggled off, your private information will be indexed by Google.

For some of my friends and colleagues who have been following my posts about privacy and my passion for organic peer-to-peer technology as the fightback model to centralized storage, now is the time to think about the creation of distributed indexes and routing technics that respect information ownership and permission sharing with its authors and communities.

The problem will get worst but the solution is within reach; that’s what is great about the Web. It will be adopted once people realize that their privacy and their networks are becoming a merchandise. Until then I will continue to promote alternatives that will evolve towards a truly distributed and privacy-friendly Web.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Is Google missing the mark with Google Wave?


When I started to use Google Wave I was ecstatic about a communication-centric model for collaboration where applications could be pulled as needed. Considering that I was an early adopter of its predecessor Lotus Notes since 1988, I saw the immediate benefit for teams to reclaim communication-centric collaboration and escape (once again) the grip of process-driven collaboration and email. Google Wave appeared to further enhance the Lotus Notes paradigm by allowing applications to enter the communication flow.

From my perspective Google Wave is revolutionary. But alas Google Wave is a big disappointment to me. Not because of its features and poor gadget library, but simply because Google missed their market. Google Wave can be a real breakthrough for enterprises seeking to inject contextual key business processes in communication flows. This way teams could easily engage in collaboration and deliberation, and pull within the context of conversation business applications and structured actions that benefit the organization’s core processes, thus feeding executive and project manager dashboards as decisions are made. It could be the bridge that reduces the growing gap between structured and unstructured business information.

So why would it work in the enterprise and not the consumer market? As I have been trying to engage my community (business, friends and communities) in Google Wave, it became clear that the communication alternatives of email, social networks and micro blogging was too comfortable and overpowering for Google Wave.

I think that Marissa Mayer (Google ‘s Vice President, Search Products & User Experience) dropped the ball on this one. Basically she failed to study the user experience in the context of today’s known disruptors and distractors to Google Wave.

This is a case of a consumer market company not seeing that the enterprise was the low hanging fruit. I have to add that is refreshing... given that I have witnessed many missed opportunities by Lotus and IBM to bring solutions to the consumer market that were better suited for on-line communities than executives.

To paraphrase a great French thinker, “All applications are equal but not at the same time or place”.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

MIT's excuse of a victory: DARPA's Red Balloons


MIT acted as a broker to the DARPA project by dividing the winnings according to a race-reward-sharing model for anyone who delivered the coordinates to MIT. They acted more like HBS than MIT on this one. In my opinion this test demonstrates that the Web and social networks are not ready to rival institutions who can basically shortcut and inject themselves as brokers. Additionally, very little was learned or demonstrated as MIT hijacked to potential innovations that could have to emerged from the challenge. MIT won by bribing instead of innovating. MIT should not exhibit confidence in the victory. MIT's victory did not teach DARPA was that wars can be won by trade and economics; the history of conflicts have thought us that very well. I am disappointed in MIT's approach and feel for all who tried to use new technologies to discover new ways to gain awareness.

See CNN's MIT wins $40,000 prize in nationwide balloon-hunt contest.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Information Awareness and Discovery for Life Sciences and Pharmaceutical Companies


Success for lIfe sciences and pharmaceutical companies is often associated with their ability to manage knowledge transition and information sharing. This is especially true as as they deal with the challenges of many recent mergers in the industry. The segregated systems where the departments’ collaborative efforts are stored represent a significant barrier to business continuation and leveraging knowledge. As system integration analysis and process streamlining efforts struggle to unify these systems, the companies are losing precious time to better manage their R&D, clinical trials, and manufacturing, all the while ensuring efficient CRO and CMO monitoring relationships.

Considering that these companies are knowledge intensive, it is critical for them to improve R&D productivity. However, the increasing complexity of information systems and the increasing amount of semi-structured collaborative technologies increases the level of information overload, growing work flow complexity, and knowledge isolation through diverse communication and storage tools.

These companies’ organizational models are in the perpetual struggle of managing rigorous processes and needing to be flexible and organic in their structure.
Mastering knowledge in a timely manner is key to their evolution and discovery processes. This is why Darwin Ecosystem takes a different approach to accelerating information consumption by breaking the silos of knowledge to allow for meaningful discovery. Our technology aggregates the information made accessible through simple syndication channels (RSS) and correlates it to deliver an awareness experience according to the user’s context of interest. This presentation, known as a Scan Cloud, immediately displays what is happening across the organization’s departments by outlining correlated clusters and dimension classes that make it easy to grasp what is happening and direct attention to the information of interest.

Darwin’s Awareness Engine is designed to evolve with the company and its users, and it can process new sources on demand, thus adding to your corpus of correlated information. There is no need for complex dashboards, strenuous process analysis and complex system integration. All that is required is to make the content available to the service as an RSS feed. Darwin’s Awareness Engine will correlate the content as it comes. The experience can also be enhanced by customizing the taxonomy according to the company’s cultures and context. Darwin provides an awareness of what is d going both inside and outside the organization so that emerging themes do not get lost in silos.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Webcom 09 - The Misplaced Fear of the Mainstream Media


Permeating the Webcom 2.0 event was the discomfort and fear of mainstream media losing ground to the rise of social media.

The simple reality that information consumption is migrating into a Web dialogue leaves the mainstream media having to compete with what they label as unverified content, and thus accordingly, untrustworthy information. Again, a major perception shift from an industry that has a difficult time distinguishing between unverified written expressions and the wisdom of crowd. I often heard from many traditional media people attending such comments as: “How can people consume such rubbish and unverifiable comments?” “We are dedicated to verifying and delivering quality content that is far more reliable!”.

Formal content providers truly believe that without their controlled content people will have a distorted view of what matters and believe opinions over facts. From their perspective they are absolutely right! If people accept social media information as validated truth, we would have... well, isn’t this what we already have? The simple fact that opinions and discussions are transposed from the oral to the written form does not mean that it changes much regarding the risk of people being misinformed. People distort, fabricate and adopt their own points of view according to their social networks, whether it be physical or the Web. The battle is not one of formal versus informal, but one where formal content providers need to listen and engage in the dialogue.

I was also amused when I heard that mainstream media and large companies were questioning the value of social media and its content. These companies and traditional media spend fortunes on market trend analysis with voodoo-like rearview mirror reporting that only serves to give them an impact appreciation for what they did in order to improve the next campaign. The amusing part is that they have traditionally done this to measure opinions and perceptions to best attract customers, yet today they are worried about the volume of content created by the same people they have been trying to mind-probe through inference investigation. Can someone pinch me here?

The perception that has to change is not the one of the people (it is only a transposition for them), it is the one of the media companies who are far more feudal than the people, as they fear a loss of power. I believe that Thomas W. Malone’s 2004 The Future of Work a great tome on the transformation of business, is more meaningful today in the light of the traditional media companies’ challenge. But are traditional media companies capable of distributed deliberation and content creation with the emerging wisdom of crowds?

The ability to have a real-time written communication has changed the concept of readers and audiences. It is now a dialogue! And from that basis the media industry is transformed forever. Traditional media needs to rethink its relationship with its customers (yes customers as they are no longer passive). They need to focus on their core value of reliable information and take it to a new level that will preserve their integrity as their assumptions regarding the information life-cycles and distribution are changing. Some will understand that their business operating processes are the enemy and that they must create new ones.

Many media companies are becoming consumed by finding ways to become social destinations themselves than thinking about their core business value proposition and processes. These companies are taking the risk of becoming followers in the media revolution instead of becoming the leaders and champions of valued and verified information. In my opinion they are making a mistake as they are driven by following to catch-up instead of innovating and managing their own transformation.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A New Age of Communication-Centric Collaboration

Google_wave_logo

Twenty years ago Lotus Development Corporation released Lotus Notes.  As one of the fortunate alpha tester and early adopters, Notes changed the way I relate to collective information and inspired my career in collaboration and social computing.  Since then  the platforms have changed but collaboration computing remains rooted in Ray Ozzie’s Lotus Notes vision.  As an extension to Ray’s view of collaboration, I created in 1996 the first social network (InterCommunity) on the Lotus Domino platform (Web server) and delivered the first Web-based community social network upon which partners could build community applications (similar to FaceBook).  The solutions we see on the Web today were understood and often existed in large enterprises as well as being available to a handful of early business Web communities throughout the ‘90s.   

For the last 20 years I have also observed companies going through the painful transition of archaic email and file sharing to Wikis and collaboration solutions.  The simple fact that collaboration is stuck in application silos is deeply rooted in the segregation of process and communication tools.  When you think about it,communication and deliberation precede the formality of process, yet most information systems have it backwards and do not connect the two effectively (even if they have all the latest Web 2.0 tools).  Frankly, other than Web protocols, the core usage challenges have not changed since 1989 despite the Web’s richer applications and social computing innovations; connectivity and open source is what made the difference thus far, not the applications themselves.  As we are naturally motivated in transposing what we know over understanding the opportunities that a new environment offers, we often continue to make the same mistakes and build technologies to over-think what is natural; our innate ability to communicate and  evolve.

But now Google shows us Google Wave.  Not since my introduction to Lotus Notes twenty years ago have I been wowed with innovation in that space.  Google Wave truly rethinks communication streams and collaboration as it should be with today’s connected world.  Google did not reinvent the wheel, they just proved that it a sphere.  It is perhaps too server centric for  my taste, but it  is just a matter of time before the model can be truly internet-based instead of mainframe-like.  Nonetheless, Google Wave’s API does open new ways to incorporate content, applications and structure in the stream of human communication in real-time.  Lotus Notes first version had some very basic features that made it possible to build solutions that promoted collaboration and content distribution, as well as  access control, replication, forms, views, scripting language, mail and later Web standards.  With these integrated basics developers created applications that exceeded Lotus‘ expectations.  Google Wave’s core architecture has the building blocks, openness and a framework based on today’s Web computing reality that will allow the user and developer community to marvel us with their clever use of Google Wave.  The communication-centric framework of Google Wave is simply brilliant and users will gradually embrace its many features as well as enrich their use through third-party plug-ins. 

I have read the more skeptical and critical press on Google Wave.  In my opinion they have short memory and grossly under estimate what Google is doing to the Web with this truly new paradigm.  Facebook and other messaging technologies need to think about ways to connect and leverage Google Wave or they will be left in the dust by its user community.  As to the critics who claim that the UI is too complex for every day users... I would like to add that if you survived and supported FaceBook’s user experience, Google Wave will not be a problem.  This is not your father’s Web so get with the program and compute with passion and intelligence.  We are about to discover new ways to have a return of investment for all the time we wasted promoting ourselves on the Web 2.0.  Isn’t it time for something new? 




I see Google Wave as new platform capable of creating a much needed movement to revive business opportunities and bring new players to the Web.  I also feel fortunate that the Darwin Awareness Engine brings a solution to the information overload that Google Wave generates.  If history repeats itself, Google Wave’s composition is destined to succeed. 

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Improving communication during work-awareness


Recent surveys and research show that executives finally value social media favorably to improve relationships with customers and build their brand (“Social Media: Embracing the Opportunities, Averting the Risks” paper from Russell Herder). Paradoxically, these same executives fail to embrace these technologies within their organizations to improve productivity through better collaboration, idea sharing, faster initiative adoption and, of course, knowledge capitalization. The reason for this can be attributed to the many past failures of Knowledge Management (KM) and collaborative technologies that were assaulted by armies of consultants and system integrators over-thinking communication empowerment. Today we know that most KM initiatives have failed due to exaggerated efforts to harness tacit knowledge into explicit processes. Having spent most of my carrier in the space of KM, collaboration and social technologies since 1988, I can testify to how many times the Web 2.0 in the enterprise was adopted under different names; Groupware, Shareware, Communication Intranets and others...the bottom line is that they all aimed at improving communication during work-awareness.

Let me expend on work-awareness. Work-awareness in state of mind where the individual is focused on his/her activity and driven by accomplishing the task at hand. If a company is able to empower the individual with communication and information discovery tools, then the information being captured is likely to be rich in relevance and valued as a sharable asset for others. Many power-blogger and micro-bloggers (Twitter) practice this concept to make their knowledge valuable for personal gain and knowledge acquisition. This is an observable phenomenon that companies can use to improve capturing knowledge from their workforce as well as empowering them to share this knowledge to solve problems and improve productivity.

Now back to the bad rep of KM and earlier versions of the Web 2.0. KM, like the early efforts of artificial intelligence, is a noble cause rooted in predictability and measurements that can rival the best structure data analysis. The reality is that the data source is messy and very human. As such, emerging movements and personal interpretations are more meaningful than a well defined empirical dashboard. Basically it requires a human being to extract value from this corpus of unstructured data.

Most of my readers know I have been developing a Web 2.0 awareness technology (Darwin Development Corporation) for the last two years that can can extract relevance out of the chaos of unstructured communication. I was a keynote speaker at the Enterprise 2.O conference in Montreal, Canada last week. Since the conference, I have been exposed to many Canadian companies who are struggling with making sense of their communication platform as they are exploring the implementation of Web 2.0 solutions. After every demonstration of Darwin’s Awareness Engine these companies were amazed at the technology’s ability to aggregate and correlate meaningful information on one screen; one called it “The dashboard of our voices” and an other said “I can finally make sense of what is going on without endless meetings.” Needless to say, we are now discussing the best way to implement Darwin’s Awareness Engine in environments that have only emails, Lotus Notes/Domino, Sharepoint and others with proven Web 2.0 solutions. I look forward to harvesting what they have in their legacy communication tools to show them that the value of collaboration is not about the platform you choose (the standard now), but instead it is about the knowledge hidden and captured during work (the future).

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Is your enterprise 2.0? (Montréal 8/24/09 Conference)


I gave a presentation last week in Montreal at the Allar-Hervieu event; “Votre entreprise est-elle 2.0?”. Of course, it was in French and I was pleased that it attracted some of the more important Montreal-based public and private companies.

Over 75 executives, with extensive experience in the importance of collaborative computing and the emerging impact of Web 2.0 technologies, were present at the event. This was a breeze of fresh air as many such conferences are occupied by Web industry enthusiasts looking for networking opportunities and prospects. Not this time! This time the communication firm Allar-Hervieu of Montreal targeted the right audience with the right message.

The presentation was made by 3 speakers delivering a logical story-line that addressed the positioning and reality of the emergence of the Web 2.0 in the enterprise, the use of content-capturing technologies and the need for thoughtful communication plans through concrete examples. and lastly how this chaos of information can be best consume to help the enterprise measure the pulse of what is happening through organic correlation and emergence ranking in opposition to complex portals, popularity ranking and KM tools.

This event was our first open product demonstration. I used live examples relating to the audience's organizations... Hydro-Québec, H1N1 trends and Canadian news events. The Hydro-Québec live demonstration was particularly relevant since it outlined a current controversy about donations to private schools. Our technology was able to show the formal media perspective in contrast (and correlated) with social media citizen contributions. Additionally, we also noticed that the Hydro-Québec debate was clearly francophone-driven as a contrast of 1 to 10 was visible when tuning the linguistic preference.

This demonstration of correlated aggregation of emerging sources originating from the formal and informal demonstrated to the audience the potential for organizations to benefit from this technology within their intranet as well as linking them to the Web.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Silos 2.0; the new barrier to awareness.


So we worked very hard to break-down the corporate silos created by divisions, cost centers, departments and business units in order to achieve a transparency that would improve awareness, thus productivity. This was the mission of the late 80s and 90s. Some will say this movement has been widely adopted across most companies that are mindful of the opening communication to their workforce and partners. Many have attributed the breakdown of the horizontal ivory towers to information technologies capable of improving communication and collaboration. Throughout my career in collaborative computing and knowledge management I have observed that the breakdown of those barriers did not primarily come from the deliberate intent to improve openness by management, but rather from renegade groups of individual seeking the right resources and information through any means possible; the networked PC, email, chats, groupware... Sounds familiar? Yes the Web 2.0 technologies are no different and the implementation of portals and collaborative software in enterprises have also created new silos of increasingly unshared knowledge. As if the natural order for an organization was doomed to isolate its knowledge in fear of loosing control. This tendency appears to be counteracted by the desire of the team to work together outside this constraint. The enterprise 2.0 witnesses the constant movement of the pendulum being drawn by managing-by-process versus the organic workforce. The reality is that we are increasingly evolving in iterative phases where the awareness of information is becoming more and more visible to the workforce. Without this awareness companies will find it increasingly difficult to innovate and respond in a timely manner to customers, events, competitors and rapid market movements. The Silos 2.0 is not about the technology but the unfortunate tendency to close the information to other teams. It is not because a company uses Web 2.0 technology that it is an Enterprise 2.0. Transposition is not a form of transformation!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Schmidt’s gone! we are supposed to be surprised?


By now we all know that Eric Schmidt resigned from Apple because “someone” dropped the dime on Apple with the FCC about the iTunes App Store; This because Apple did not approve a Google Voice App! What I find ironic, and perhaps more evil, is that Google debates that the mobile Web should be as open as the Web because it creates a larger and more searchable mobile Web... this is hypocritical coming from a company who treats data differently than applications. Let’s not be naive here, Google’s goal is to capture all the information on the Web to better target advertisement at the expense of our privacy. Applications are just means to that end! From a market perception standpoint, Schmidt’s resignation is great for Google as people are going to question Apple’s business model and its Application approval process. I think that it is just a way for Google to push further its Phone by making the choice one of philosophy and not product. Evil and brilliantly executed by concourse of circumstances or design... nonetheless it is very interesting between-the-lines reading and observing its ripple effect.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Farewell to Walter Cronkite


I had the good fortune to meet Walter Cronkite in Paris in 1996. It was during the early days of my work on virtual communities of interest and my strong conviction that communication technologies can be as damaging to social ecosystems, as transportation’s progress has been to the planet’s ecosystem. Our conversation started from that premiss with the statement that these disruptions are mainly caused by the acceleration of time and space through technologies. Walter Cronkite shared his view on how the western culture is being imposed into other cultures through the media. He quoted the The Islamic 1979 coup d'état (AKA: Iranian Revolution) as an example of rejection when western media exposed a life style that threaten Islamic traditions... (“Showing women free to act as they please, open social criticism and mini skirts on television was too much too soon.”) Can we measure an acceptable threshold according to different cultures? What makes change acceptable to one culture and not to the other? What “sociocides” are we committing? Will we have nostalgia about one people’s way of life?... As citizens of the Virtual Age we know that immaterial models have value. It is perhaps time for us to seek solutions and awareness about the next ecosystem to save; our rich and diverse cultures.

This meeting gave me material and strengthen my conviction about the risk associated with the speed of communication. A paradoxical awareness given the nature of my work! Meeting and discussing my work with Walter Cronkite was one of the highlights and inspiring moment of my life.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Micro Blog Streaming and Awareness


Micro blogs (Twitter), social networks (Facebook) and rich media posts (Flckr and YouTube) give us the ability to receive streams of events as they occur in near real-time about unfolding events or just answer our curiosity needs to know what’s happening in our communities of interests. Events such as Obama’s rise to the presidency, and today the protest against the election in Iran, have been fueled and benefit from this Web movement. What was seen as an ingenious way for the Obama campaign to spread it’s message, is now seen as the instrument of free speech and media control disruption in Iran. When an event is that important, and being watched by so many, we can count on the news to leverage and filter these sources for most of us. The reality is that unless your are passionate about a given topic or your social network, you would not think of going to micro blogs to be informed about what is going on. And the reason is simple... Why would you waste your time reading through hundreds of insignificant and chronologically sorted posts from people you don’t know? Even Connan O’Brian, as the new host of the Tonight Show, now has a satirical skit about how meaningless celebrity Twitts are in contrast to the hype made about Twitter. Who really cares if Angelina Jolie Twits “I am having a terrible coffee in Malibou”? So why the hype and when does it matter? The hype is there because many media have learned to use Twitter to reach a larger audience at no cost... that is why every media talks about Twitter. This basically gave all the media a way to do what they could not do with phone text messages... so they promote Twitter every time they can! Now why does micro blogging matters? It matters because it is the voice of the people (although fading quickly thanks to those mega-media spammers). This is where an important distinction must be made; the voice of the people is not the same as the words of every one. This is why no one who values his/her free time will read the chronological stream of 140 characters statements from people waiting in line to buy the new iPhone or complain about Junior High’s principal.

Micro blogs are chaotic in nature and increase our information overload, unless someone who cares about a given topic, observes, searches, filters, selects and delivers the valuable nuggets for us to pay attention. To this day the micro blogging phenomena has been focusing on self-promotion, community awareness, and used for people-reporting. Now how do we make sense of the information overload we all love to create and share? In contrast from today’s iteration with micro-blogs, DARWIN a WikiGazette LLC awareness and discovery engine, take a different approach by acknowledging the chaotic nature of this information, and focusing its model on the emergence of correlated themes coming from all even-driven sources.

Friday, June 05, 2009

The Pulse 2.0 of Success


Organizations of every size believe their vision for the future must lead their actions to be realized. To ensure that actions are aimed towards that end, the challenge of the executive team is about gaining the trust, leading the inspiration and ensuring that the vision will be adopted and acted upon. An experienced executive team will also ensure that the organization’s stakeholders express their vision and share its ownership. This provides for a better feasibility assessment and execution commitment.

Maintaining and reinventing a vision is a highly iterative process that shapes future outcomes. This process can be most effective when observing measurable results as early as possible in the vision’s life cycle. The results are often used to measure if the vision was correct or requires improvement. Nowadays this form of measurement provides leadership with a rear-view mirror decision-making perspective. In fact, when an organization measures sales, it is the outcome of coordinated collaborative efforts that have often occurred months before becoming a key indicator of success. Today management needs to have real-time visibility on the company’s vision adoption and actions that lead to the measured result. With the emergence of Web 2.0 collaboration tools, many teams and knowledge workers use chat rooms, blogs, wikis and other means to coordinate their activities and implement best practices aimed at reaching their common goal. Unfortunately, this information and knowledge is rarely observed as a measurement of the pulse of what is going on day-to-day. These tools remain segregated, ambiguous and lead to perishable or ignored content simply because they are too heterogeneous to provide measurements. Yet employees use them for deliberation, decision buy-in, delegation and strategic purposes.

We have a platform that provides an overview of pulse of different initiatives across the enterprise’s Web 2.0 collaboration.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Entre le cristal et la fumée - Henri Atlan (Between cristal and smoke)


I am not sure that this book is available in English but it further strengthens my research in extending the Chaos Theory to consuming information using the interpretations of the human cognitive abilities when facing a collective corpus of multidimensional data. I am finding many parallel ways to explain the organization of what is alive with what I believe to be a similar model for chaotic information. Henri Atlan outlines many concepts of Neodarwinism and Costa de Beauregard’s views of thoughts and matter. With modern computing capabilities, I am more and more inclined to build and find support in experimenting with life-model algorithms. This is also supported by François Jacob work that brings stronger arguments for the models of physico-chemistry. I don’t how many of my friends and ex-colleagues share my passion for extracting/elevating order out of chaos through mathematics and human cognitive interaction with systems... for my old IBM/Lotus friends this is not a far stretch from KM and the COI work we did. I invite you to contact me and share your ideas with me. I will start to shift my focus from KM to Chaos Management as it offers much better information consumption in the age of information emerging from so many dimensions and levels of relative importance.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

The value of computing and knowledge.

In an effort to put a price on a new information consumption engine that I am building, I was asked to figure out what a license cost might look like. After nearly 20 years in the field of Knowledge Management I have been able to measure the value of systems that accelerate a known process through computation and workflow rules... but a system that actually acts as if it is thinking and produces unpredictable results is a different animal all together. I believe that we are starting to reach a new paradigm shift in computing where AI systems mining chaotic information start to look more like an expert than an expert system. I have been able to elevate chaotic information into structured knowledge that has value only to the cognitive process of the human recipient. A very similar process to the one we are engaged in when we discuss, discover and enrich our knowledge from others. From that premiss, I can only think that such a system should be valued and measured according to what it brings to those interacting with it. Basically it should be considered as valuable as co-workers. Perhaps this is a stretch today for most of us, but with IBM's research in human-like computing I can see the day when we will price these systems according to interaction benefits over measured ROIs.

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