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Mar 16, 2004: Enterprise Blogging

Michael Angeles has posted his PowerPoint presentation "Supporting enterprise knowledge management with weblogs: A weblog services roadmap". Michael has mapped out an extremely useful grass roots path that contrasts well with traditional top-down knowledge management approaches. The roadmap in Michael's words:

In the near term I suggested first steps towards supporting knowledge creation with RSS. I suggested methods for providing access to aggregated blog output as next steps. And as a far off goal, I discussed the integration of output from sources such as blogs with other enterprise information using social software and social network analysis.

Excellent Michael! Now I guess I'll have to go update my own roadmap (for enterprise IA).

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Comment: ML (Mar 16, 2004)

I thought it was really interesting as well. I sent the link to my colleagues here.

Comment: Alan Gutierez (Mar 16, 2004)

He notes that the topic of making blog output findable was of interest. That seems to be the next step in a grass-roots approach to enterprise blogging.

I've felt that an interim solution, prior to the development of social network analysis, would be to build a blog editor that simply facilitated the blogging best practice of composition. (This best practice is also know as stealing.)

http://wired.com/news/culture/0,1284,62537,00.html?tw=wn_tophead_1

Rather then find, count on your middle-management to sift through, package, and forward blog content.

Comment: Michael (Mar 17, 2004)

Alan I also like the idea of having people find, sift through and recommend the best pieces of what is found in aggregated data. It could actually be viewed as a component of what I talk about in the "Mediated approach", where human indexers are used to look at collected RSS entries as they enter the information system and apply subject and other types of indexing. For instance, this process may include flagging and weighting items for importance. Relying heavily on people for doing the recommending means allocating human resources and relying on the subject matter expertise of indexers. I could see that being a problem in some organizations.

I like the idea of using algorithms like HP Labs' iRank to trace back and determine relevant citations by looking at how people have referred to new concepts and who published on those concepts first. This is the sort of thing I grouped in the social network analysis tools that could be used at the far end of the roadmap. I talked about DiceLaRed and Blogdex as simple examples, but BlogPulse and the Blog Epidemic Analyzer seem more appropriate for analyzing concepts, how important they are in the given set, and relating / ranking pages referring to those concepts. This is an area I'm interested in following as it may help information systems make sense of the social nature of blogs and the formation of organizational knowledge.

Comment: Mark Thristan (Mar 17, 2004)

I really enjoyed Michael's presentation, there was a great deal of food for thought there. I thought others might be interested in this post on my blog which leads to a very nice practical presentation on blogs, RSS and learning objects. One for the training and HR departments...

Comment: Mark Thristan (Mar 17, 2004)

Gah! Didn't realise your comments stripped out anchors, Lou - the link to my post is: http://www.marktsinfoblog.blogspot.com/2004_02_01_marktsinfoblog_archive.html#107670151945891427, but to be honest, I'd just jump straight to the presentation Connecting Learning Objects - http://www.mcli.dist.maricopa.edu/show/nmc1003/index.html.
Apologies for the double post.

Comment: Edward Vielmetti (Mar 19, 2004)

Lou, thanks for the pointer.

At Socialtext, we're using a combination of blog and wiki (in the same system) to help manage projects. For me, the wiki page is about the right level of granularity to manage a single task or piece of technology; the blog view of the same project collates a set of wiki pages together into familiar last edit at the top format and gives a good project 10,000 foot level overview.

The amazing thing is that it cuts down a lot on the need to provide status updates on what is going on - if you've been wiki-ing and blogging your progress and using the workspace as an open scratchpad for notes, people can just read the summary page or your notes and see where you are directly.

I've also been keeping my "action items" and "waiting for" lists in the workspace in a blog so that I can see and post at a glance who I'm waiting for input on on projects or who's waiting for me.

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