Some Thoughts to Consider 4 • Given the textbook emphasis in recent chapters on search techniques, and given the AI tradition of equating problem solving with search, is it true that all problems can be formulated as trees to search? • What do we consider the ‘Intellectual Capital’ of an organization or corporation? • What are the responsibilities of a CKO (Chief Knowledge Officer) in a large corporation? • What really is involved in the area called ‘Knowledge Management’, aside from all the industry hype and myths? • Does it have anything to do with AI and knowledge representation?
Knowledge ManagementSome Perspectives • Definitions, key concepts, technologies, and more: • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knowledge_Management • A collage of definitions, opinions, and positions can be found at: • http://www.brint.com/ • CIO magazine has a basic guide to Knowledge Management: • http://www.cio.com/article/40343/ • The American Productivity and Quality Center has pioneered numerous seminars and offers a bookstore with free resources (papers) at: • http://www.apqc.org/ • One of the more credible KM tool vendors is Autonomy, Inc., using industrial-strength AI techniques: • http://www.autonomy.com/
Systems Thinking • The key to thinking dynamically rather than statically is to practice ‘Systems Thinking’ rather than ‘Laundry List Thinking’ or ‘Factors Thinking’. • Such thinking makes relationships among things explicit, rather than just the things themselves. • Such thinking makes causal connectivity explicit. • The reason for using such discipline is that different people employ different semantics, even though they think they are using the same words and concepts.
Systems Thinking Resources • Systems Thinking via Wikipedia: • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Systems_thinking • Systems Thinking via Peter Senge and his book The Fifth Discipline: • http://www.rtis.com/nat/user/jfullerton/review/learning.htm • http://www.infed.org/thinkers/senge.htm • Some Tools: • http://www.iseesystems.com/
Systems Thinking Implies Modeling • Modeling is fundamental to the understanding of business processes. • Modeling is: • A way of learning • Problem solving • Communication • System Specification • Community Vernacular • Syntax encourages focus • Notation encourages common semantics • Methodologies come in styles – ways to express intuitive business story: • Use case style • Scenario style • Script style • Workflow style • Visualization style • Knowledge Based Systems and Object Technology are means for formulating and directly implementing business models in software.
A Taxonomy of Information (from John Perry Barlow, WIRED, March 1994) • Information Is an Activity • Information is a verb, not a noun. • Information is experienced, not possessed. • Information has to move. • Information is conveyed by propagation, not distribution. • Information Is a Life Form • Information wants to be free. • Information replicates into the cracks of possibility. • Information wants to change. • Information is perishable. • Information Is a Relationship • Meaning has value and is unique to each case. • Familiarity has more value than scarcity. • Exclusivity has value. • Point of view and authority have value. • Time replaces space.
More Barlow “Notions of property, value, ownership, and the nature of wealth itself are changing more fundamentally than at any time since the Sumerians first poked cuneiform into wet clay and called it stored grain. Only a very few people are aware of the enormity of this shift.” “Information is a difference which makes a difference. Thus, information only exists in the . The making of that difference is an activity within a relationship. Information is an action which occupies time rather than a state of being which occupies physical space, as is the case with hard goods.” “The central economic distinction between information and physical property is that information can be transferred without leaving the possession of the original owner. If I sell you my horse, I can’t ride him after that. If I sell you what I know, we both know it.” “One idea is central to understanding liquid commerce: Information economics, in the absence of objects, will be based more on relationship than possession.”
What if We Were to:Simulate the Business • Requires knowledge based models of: • Organizations • Business processes • Information holdings • Decision making flow • Market segments • Requires extensive visualization capability. • Analogies: • Games like SimCity and Sims • Executive Dashboard • Allows ‘possible worlds’ testing of business knowledge. • Provides perspective for senior leaders. • Provides the testbed for business process reengineering and new business opportunity evaluation.
Key Factors The key to building successful knowledge based systems is not in the tools It is rather in: • The people. • Understanding and modeling the business problem. • Taking a global perspective of the business. • The empowerment balance between architects and project management. • The culture of the company and of the IT organization.