It was about a year ago that I participated in a panel discussion around the subject of knowledge preservation. It was convened at the Government Technology Week in Ottawa Canada in October 2006. The exchanges amongst the panelists started well in advance of the event and they churned up a lot of things to consider. As usual, I played the role of the provocateur. In the preparations for the panel discussion, which consequently went very well and sparked a fruitful exchange with a fair-sized audience, I floated an illustration. We collectively decided that its complexity disqualified it from being used... Read more →

Continuing with some reflections on, or occasioned by, "Glut: Mastering Information Through the Ages" (see my earlier post), I found that the conclusion of the book introduced a new perspective on a topic that has bothered me (interested me) for quite some time. Within the subject that travels under the banner of "knowledge management", there appears to be a rather resilient division of opinion. On one side there are those who associate KM with best practices (troublesome though the term is), documents, and what we might call explicit knowledge - artifacts where "management" can be used with some meaning and... Read more →

In my post about "Glut: Mastering Information Through the Ages" I mentioned the phrase derivative history to which I associated this book and which I immediately declared was not a bad thing at all. Before I get into trouble, I thought I better explain my meaning with this phrase. By derivative I specifically mean that the work is one that builds on the work of others who have either delved deeply into specific areas of history or have done some of the summary work of yet others who have delved even more deeply still. One of my own recollections from... Read more →

Just today I finished reading a book that was found by chance and turned out to be a quite delightful read. It is "Glut: Mastering Information Through the Ages" by Alex Wright (ISBN 978-0-309-10238-4). I found the book while perusing a bookstore last week in Sacramento. While being caught in a bookstore is not unusual for me, on this occasion I found myself in a section that I don't usually hover over. It was here that the bright orange cover leapt out at me. I say that the book was a delight because it is immanently readable, interesting because it... Read more →