April 2003 Archives

Mike Wendland's E-Journal

I got this link from Dan Gillmor's eJournal.  Mike Wendland is experimenting with weblogs and video to augment his reporting.  This is a fun experiment.


This is a list of KM / eLearning blogs in order of originality, consistency and KM focus.   It is a collection of the important KM watering holes. This page is part of KmWiki. Started by DenhamGrey on 06/30/1999.


I copied this segment of a post from Windley's Enterprise Computing Weblog, this is a weblog that I hadn't visited before but is worth a click through.  I also agree with him on this particular topic.

Hertzfeld and Kapor on Chandler

Andy Hertzfeld (of Mac fame) and Mitch Kapor (of Lotus fame) are speaking about Chandler, an open source productivity tool that Kapor is funding out of his own pocket. The organization Mitch created to build it is the Open Source Applications Foundation. Why Chandler?

  • email is the most important productivity tool
  • there are gaps between what email is and what users want.

Mitch describes it as Lotus agenda meets the Internet. A rich ability to associate all kinds of thing and people in natural ways. Here are some features:

  • Power email - managing large volumes of email
  • Sharing and collaboration - share anything with anyone including browsing other people's repositories. Publish and subscribe to let you receive changes automatically.

Notes from the Chandler Demo

I am watching the development of Chandler with interest.  It is an open source program that may provide far greater email functionality developed by Mitch Kapor.   This link is to a demo of the functionality associated with version 0.1.

Each made my Outlook mailbox behave weirdly.  Ella, was better for screening spam, but I deleted it, finding Cloudmark a much better, more accurate tool.  I was more hopeful about Kubi from Kubi Software for collaborative email.  I couldn't make this tool work at all, even though I fiddled with it for several hours.  C'est la vie. 

Communities are one of the basic elements of experience sharing and collaboration.   There are several new software tools that help to identify and reinfoce knowledge sharing communities:

Tacit Knowledge System's Knowledgemail

Intraspect's Collaboration Solutions

IBM Lotus Discovery Server

Each of these tools should be watched, there are privacy concerns, but with careful use, these tools could allow analysis that would strengthen the quality and value of experience shared.

Dan Gillmor is writing a book called "Making the News" What Happens to Journalism and Society When Every Reader Can Be a Writer (Editor, Producer, Etc.)

He has published the book outline on his website and is asking for feedback.   First of all the book's subject is interesting, since I am profoundly interested in micropublishing, but, also, the way he is writing the book with his audience is unique.   I am intrigued by the idea of collaborating and synthesizing the ideas of many into the book.

Here is what he says about the project: 

"The book will explore the intersection of technology and journalism. The working title is "Making the News" -- reflecting a central point of this project, namely that today's (and tomorrow's) communications tools are turning traditional notions of news and journalism in new directions. These tools give us the ability to take advantage, in the best sense of the word, of the fact that our collective knowledge and wisdom greatly exceeds any one person�s grasp of almost any subject. We can, and must, use that reality to our mutual advantage.

I�m doing the typical research: reading, interviewing, thinking, organizing, etc. I think I know a lot already about this subject. Naturally, I also am aware that I could know a lot more. So let's practice what I preach.

To that end, I hope you will become a part of this book, too. You can start by reading the outline below. My publisher, O�Reilly & Associates, agreed that this was a good idea.

How can you join the project? Please tell me what you think of these ideas. More that that, please tell me about specific things you know about that would a) help illustrate the concepts; b) refute what I�m saying; and/or c) provide further nuance and context."

Gibson quote


MetaMap:  a landscape of acronyms

With the exponential development of the World Wide Web, there are so many metadata initiatives, so many organisations involved, and so many new standards that it's hard to get our bearings in this new environment.

The problem is exacerbated by the fact that the names of most of these new standards are represented by acronyms. The MetaMap exists to help gather in one place information about these metadata initiatives, to try to show relationships among them, and to connect them with the various players involved in their creation and use.

The MetaMap takes the form of a subway map, using the metaphor of helping users navigate in "metaspace", the environment of metadata.



    Look for this link and download the presentation


From the woman who wrote "First Look, Office 2003" a weblog that offers:   "Tips, ideas, thoughts, and quirky things for Office XP users."   Since I really heavily on Microsoft products I found this blog interesting and one that I can learn from.

I found a new site which I have found helpful as I explore CMS and authoring.  The author lays out an interesting series of arguments that is worth reading:

"When implementing a new enterprise-wide content management system (CMS), most businesses assume a decentralised model of authoring.

This devolves the responsibility for creating content back to individual staff members within the business units.

While this is seen as an effective way of reducing costs and increasing involvement, it is not without its challenges and risks.

In practice, neither centralised or decentralised authoring is the single answer to all requirements.

To gain the best business outcomes, it is necessary to use both models where appropriate, with a full understanding of their strengths and weaknesses."

CIOs in the Middle and in the Mud

Deliverables, communication of value the new top challenges for IT executives, says Deloitte & Touche.   According to the article, because the economic environment is so poor, cost reduction is still the driving force in most companies.   IT execs need, however, to focus more on value delivered.   The ideas aren't new but the economic imperative still requires a sharp focus on the bottom line.

Corante has published a new blog by a team of people that are very interested in social software and knowledge management.   In fact, there was an interesting conference last week on Emerging Technologies that many people are writing about.  It sounds like some good ideas emerged.   This is a site where you can begin a deep dive into the material.

From the Margin of the Writable Web

Good presentation by Meg Hourihan at O'Reilly's Emerging Technology conference in California.   This is good weak signal research about how social software and electronic communications will continue to evolve.

For those of us involved in content creation this is good news.   I have also been looking a Framemaker which has excellent support for XML authoring.   Microsoft's InfoPath and Framemaker will make this space interesting.

from eContent  "Adobe has  announced an XML architecture for document creation, collaboration, and process management across the enterprise. The new XML architecture provides an open framework for extending the value of business processes inside and outside the firewall. Adobe's XML architecture supports end-to-end document processes. Key components include intelligent forms, process automation, data integration, security, and publishing for archiving and printing. The architecture will be supported across Adobe's client and server solutions and will integrate Adobe PDF. It will take full advantage of XML for integration and bring continuity to business processes by presenting XML data in PDF for reliably sharing, viewing, and interacting through Acrobat 6.0 software or Adobe Reader. XML combined with the open, cross-platform nature of PDF, means documents can be accessed across systems and core business applications for deployment. Reliability and policy management features available in Adobe PDF let businesses control access and integrity of business critical documents across the extended enterprise. All standard XML tools work directly with Adobe's XML architecture and it builds upon W3C XML standards including Namespaces, XSLT, XPath, XML Schema and XML Digital Signatures for full compatibility with existing applications and XML data streams. Over the coming months, Adobe plans to deliver a new tool for designing XML and PDF templates and forms; make the XML architecture specification publicly available, and deliver an XML toolkit for developers to provide easy access to PDF file content from common scripting languages and Java."

How Java Web Servers Work

this article is adapted from Budi Kurniawan's self-published book on Tomcat internals. You can find more information on his web site.

A web server is also called a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) server because it uses HTTP to communicate with its clients, which are usually web browsers. A Java-based web server uses two important classes, java.net.Socket and java.net.ServerSocket, and communicates through HTTP messages. Therefore, this article starts by discussing of HTTP and the two classes. Afterwards, I'll explain the simple web server application that accompanies this article.

Super clear explanation of RRS news feeds.

From McGee's Musings

Michael Angeles explains how K-loggers can advance knowledge management with the support of librarians

from Corante:   "McKinsey says the spread of broadband Internet access worldwide "has implications not only for providers of broadband access and content but also for companies beyond the telecommunications and media sectors." While there currently are no killer apps for broadband beyond the lure of high-speed net access itself, McKinsey says broadband is poised to be highly disruptive. The spread of broadband may "steadily accelerate the acceptance of teleworking and the provision of teleservices of all types,"

says McKinsey which envisions expansion of university-level remote learning programs, and similar changesin financial services, health care, the public sector, and retailing.

Apple tunes up for music

Apple tunes up for music pitch. Apple Computer schedules a media event for April 28 that promises to be "music to your ears." On tap: The company may debut a new online music service that's been in the works. [CNET News.com]

Revolution is not an AOL Keyword

Revolution is not an AOL Keyword*

You will not be able to stay home, dear Netizen.
You will not be able to plug in, log on and opt out.
You will not be able to lose yourself in Final Fantasy,
Or hold your Kazaa download queues,
Because revolution is not an AOL Keyword.

I remember the summer of 1970 listening to Gil Scott-Heron's "The Revolution will not be Televised".  I actually have the LP.

Writing a Short Story in

Writing a Short Story in Public. Cory Doctorow and Charlie Stross are taking the open-source writing process to fascinating extremes: They're writing Unwirer, a new story,... [Dan Gillmor's eJournal]

Emerging Technology Week. A hugely

Emerging Technology Week. A hugely busy week coming up, especially at the Emerging Technology conference, sponsored by the same company that's publishing my... [Dan Gillmor's eJournal]

Online collaboration at it's best.

Online collaboration at it's best.

A comparison of Yahoo Groups and Groove by Luigi Canali de Rossi

If I had to vouch for Groove Workspace software�s greatest feature, I would say "its concept". Groove provides a whole new way of collaborating online, while providing the best ideas, features and facilities one could have ever hoped for. This is the YahooGroup Premium version I had been looking for so long. It gives me all that I have now been spoiled to expect and more. [Jeroen Bekkers' Groove Weblog]

Wikis and Knowledge Sharing Survey

I don't have a wiki yet, but I have reading a lot about them for the past several months.   I want to try it, but it seems like it takes lots of effort.  You and your team have to like to write.

"Following a survey on weblogs, Seb published on on wikis.  What's interesting about the results is how the demographics differ -- wikis are definately earlier in the technology adoption lifecycle.  To generalize, they have a different purpose: weblogs help people from different disciplines meet each other, while wikis help groups form.

Pie chart


Results of Seb's "wikis and knowledge sharing" survey. Hot on the heels of the weblog survey results, here are the results for the survey on how wikis are used to share knowledge. 167 people responded, but they are not a strict subset of the sample in the weblog survey. It is interesting to compare the professional background of respondents in each survey (questions 22 and 12). Webloggers' backgrounds were rather diverse, while the wikizen distribution was much more slanted towards technologists - with double the proportion of self-described technologists relative to other backgrounds.

I think this may indicate that the mindset needed to get drawn into wiki land, as opposed to blogspace, is different and closer to "programmerthink". Two examples: first, each new page needs to be given a meaningfully constructed name that is subsequently used for referencing that page. This is reminiscent of the naming and referencing of procedures, object classes or variables that programmers do all the time. Second, most wikis still use the loathsome CamelCase syntax, which instantly alienates many of the would-be users. "[Seb's Open Research]

IdeaFlow: creativity & innovation

Corante published this today:   "Renee Hopkins has posted part one of her interview with Henry Chesbrough, the Harvard Business School professor who's just published "Open

Innovation: The New Imperative For Creating And Profiting From Technology." His central argument: the traditional, internally focused model of innovation is becoming obsolete and that what's taking its place is a new paradigm of "open innovation" that has companies leveraging, licensing and buying existing technologies developed elsewhere.

An excerpt: "Closed Innovation is fundamentally about scarcity of useful knowledge. In order to do anything, you have to do everything. It is inwardly focused, and deeply vertically integrated. It takes little or no notice of external knowledge and resources. Open Innovation is fundamentally about operating in a world of abundant knowledge, where 'not all the smart people work for you', so you better go find them, connect to them, and build upon what they can do. It seeks ways to build upon and leverage external knowledge, and focuses internal activities upon filling in the gaps, and integrating internal and external knowledge into useful systems."

My experience with innovation is that it is an knowledge intensive process that cannot be done from the inside out.   All decisions need to be informed by what others are doing.   Organizations can learn and adapt much faster if they embrace innovation from all sources and don't look solely internally for the best ideas.   Henry Chesborough is a good thinker on this topic.



Owen Thomas   writes a good article in Business 2.0 about SBI & Co, a company that is rolling up dead consulting firms.   There are lots of good people in these firms, however I don't know if there is a current market for the services.   He says...
"Few dotcom-era businesses were more thoroughly discredited than Internet consultants. Arrogant during the boom, most were decimated
 when the bubble popped. Now SBI & Co., a privately held professional-services firm based in Salt Lake City, has paid more than $50 million to buy the remains
of Lante, MarchFirst, Razorfish, and Scient. Ned Stringham, CEO of SBI, says he expects the roll-up strategy to nearly double his company's revenue
from $87 million in 2002 to $150 million in 2003. All the same, we were curious to know how he plans to turn a jumble of undead consultancies
into a viable business"

Introducing e-mail's next generation

This is a good article about new email clients.   I looked at Bloomba, Kubi Client, and Ella.   Each has interesting features, although I have not tried them.   It is worth investigating.  I am especially interested in applications that add functionality to Outlook, my current email client.   BTW, I am using Outlook 2003, Beta 2, which is far superior to other releases.

For me to read later

For me to read later today.

While at Adobe, my friend Thomas talked with me at length about how Adobe is trying to get the industry to implement its XMP (eXtensible Metadata Platform). Here's a paper on XMP.

I'd like to get feedback on XMP and give that back to Adobe. What do you think? Oh, yeah, they are giving this to a standards body so that it's not "just an Adobe" thing. This looks pretty interesting. When I start at Microsoft next month I'll try to find out what Microsoft's official position is on XMP. Anyone know?

[The Scobleizer Weblog] [Blogging Alone]

Social Software Alliance

The Social Software Alliance was announced recently.   This alliance was promoted to create and promote standards for social software.   Social software are applications that allow people to interact in a user friendly space where they can interact and share ideas.   Blogs, Chats, Wikis, and forums are all examples of social software.  

Quoting from the call for discussion:

"The fast-paced nature of the social software space now argues for developing light-weight, easy-to-implement standards, following the Internet tradition of rough consensus and running code, but perhaps moving faster than the larger standards bodies. It is expected that those standards promulgated by the alliance which become widely adopted will be proposed to the appropriate general standards body or bodies: W3C, IETF, ISO, etc. "

There will be a SocialText sponsored Happening tomorrow (see the site for more details) and we hope that anyone who is interested in the development of social software will come and get involved.

.NET Weblogs

If you are the kind of person who just can not get enough .NET information, this site is just what you are looking for. There is a complete list of active .NET centric blogs and the most recent posts on this site.

In Wired News they reported on Look Smart's new approach to indexing the web by using spare computing power of users machines.  By signing up and getting a screen saver you can allow them to use your computer to help crawl sites.   This way they say they can index more of the web than other search engines.

Wired says:  "LookSmart hopes to tap the altruistic nature of many Internet users. The company hopes volunteers will help build a distributed search engine because it is to their benefit. In that spirit, LookSmart said it would open up as much of the index as possible to the public.

"We're building a community-based infrastructure, and because it's community based we're giving back," Stechert said."

This is a good idea, I hope it works, especially because I like the idea of communities building the product that I see on the web.

Drive-by posting

This is an interesting post about linking to sites and developement of ideas.   I tend to link to sites and ideas that intrigue me, but often I don't add as much comentary as I think I should.   I am going to try, as I continue this blog to add more commentary and to discuss why the ideas or content I am pointing to  is important and relevant to me.   One clue is that I am passionate about information, information technology, how content is organized and presented, and how people learn from that content.   Lots of the posts in this blog have to do with that.

Philanthropic organizations

I have been investigating organizations that are sponsoring social change around the country as government resources are reduced.   Serveral organizations merit  recognition, because of their commitment to socal change and the capacity building work that they do in our communities.

The Omidyar Foundation: "We envision a world where community members collectively strive towards both personal pursuits and public service. Here, people value building the spirit of community and embrace the ethic of citizenship and pluralism. Passion and commitment to community stewardship predominate in an open, ongoing dialogue that enables civic engagement."  (copied from their web site)

Geofunders:  "Grantmakers for Effective Organizations is dedicated to promoting learning and encouraging dialogue among funders committed to building strong and effective nonprofit organizations. GEO�s mission is to advance and expand organizational effectiveness practices in and by the philanthropy community. GEO does this by :

  • commissioning and contributing to research,
  • developing programs and products, and
  • building a community of practice that expands the resources available on nonprofit effectiveness."

    this group does a superb job sharing information and knowledge with their colleagues in the philanthorpic world.

New Profit Inc "New Profit is dedicated to performance-based funding coupled with management development support for winning social entrepreneurs. We believe in partnering with winners, supporting their growth efforts and using benchmarks and performance measurements to hold them accountable to generating increased social change. With support from progressive foundations, individuals and other grant-making organizations, New Profit Inc. is building a community of like-minded thinkers dedicated to creating the new philanthropy. "

New Profit is a venture funder and consulting firm for non profit companies, doing much of their work like traditional venture capitalist and wanting to see almost immediate results in social service. 

Creative Commons

I registered my weblog with Creative Commons tonight.   You can use the content here, give me attribution, but only for non commercial use.

The Creative Commons is devoted to expanding the range of creative work available for others to build upon and share

Real Good Spelling. What Is

Real Good Spelling.

What Is the Most Commonly Misspelled Word on the Web

"Armed with Terry Ballard's Typographical Errors in Library Databases, Andrew Baio has decided to see if he could find the most commonly misspelled word on the Web. The winners so far appear to be doesnt and seperate." [LISNews.com]

[The Shifted Librarian]

Back to Iraq 2.0

Christopher Allbritton still has some of the best commentary on the war.

Commute to Nowhere

Excellent article on being unemployed in this economy: powerless, fearful, guilty.

Commute to Nowhere

Matisse Picasso at the MOMA

Painting: Pablo Picasso. Self-Portrait with Palette. 1906.
Painting: Henri Matisse. Self-Portrait. 1906.

My wife, Barbara, and I visited the MOMA last Saturday to see the Matisse Picasso exhibit.  It was well worth it.  Beautiful show!   Great to see the dialog between the two artists.

Wow, Man, what a book! Dig it.


"Drop City" by T.C. Boyle
A group of stoned, free-loving hippies set up a commune in backwoods Alaska -- and discover that Nature is a lot crueler than they dreamed.

Apple Computer is in talks with Vivendi Universal to buy Universal Music Group, the world's largest record company, in a multi-billion dollar deal that would reshape the record business. The deal "would instantly make technology guru Steve Jobs, Apple's co-founder and chief executive, the most powerful player in the record industry," says the Los Angeles Times.

The story says discussions have been under way in secret for several months, though Apple hasn't yet made a formal bid, and that Apple is interested in owning Universal because it's on the verge of release of a new Internet service that "some music business insiders believe could pave the way for widespread online distribution of songs." Says the article:

"Defying conventional wisdom, Jobs apparently is betting that music is finally on the verge of becoming a profitable presence on the Internet."


We've launched another blog we hope you'll find informative and insightful. "In the Pipeline" will have Derek Lowe, a medicinal chemist, delving deep into issues related to drug discovery, a field he knows intimately given he's worked for major pharmaceuticals since 1989.

Derek graduated from Hendrix College, got his doctorate at Duke and spent time in Germany on a Humboldt fellowship before working for employers past and present on potential treatments for schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, diabetes, osteoporosis and other diseases. Just as important, he can write and no stranger to blogging as he's been at it for more than a year on his own site.

If you know his writing expect no great change. For those that don't Derek's deep industry experience, command of the science and excellent coverage make accessible the fascinating and critical realm of drug discovery. Up for discussion: how biotechs and pharmaceutical companies conduct research, identify drug targets, turn ideas into practical therapeutics, navigate a tricky regulatory and legal landscape, make money and much more. Also likely to make an appearance, says Derek: occasional digressions into topics like which lab reagents smell the worst and how fun and rewarding research can be.

Recent topics covered include antisense technology, Cipro, chemical weapons, Geron's work on liver cells, SARS, the EU's Biotech Directive, the University of Rochester patent defeat, Schering-Plough forecast revisions and more.

In the Pipeline's a great read on its own but makes for a super complement to two other blogs we've launched recently: Living Code by Richard Gayle on the intersection of biology and information, and Brain Waves by Zack Lynch on the convergence of biotech, nanotech, infotech and the cognitive sciences. Please let friends and colleagues who'd be interested know about it.

In the Pipeline: drug discovery


Intel Dump

This is an excellent war blog, with quite interesting commentary and stories.

Red Hat Linux 9

I upgraded my Red Hat Linux OS to version 9 yesterday.   It was extremely easy and worked the first time.   I don't see much change in funcitonality yet, but I have just started using it.   I have a dual boot Dell 8200 and my primary OS is Windows XP, but a lot of my clients are experimenting with Linux so I have to be up to date.  I will continue to write about my experience.

French coverage of the war in Iraq

French News. I have been watching the latest news via real player and www.france2.fr.   And I have to say, that their coverage is much more interesting than ours.  They have many more reporters in the heart of Bagdad that are giving live coverage.   If you can understand french I highly reccomend checking it out. [Rob Dulaney's Radio Weblog]


Red Hat touts content management.

Red Hat touts content management. Company also announces portal server [InfoWorld: Top News]

I need to investigate Red Hat's solutions, I like their version of linux.

Al-Jazeera's english language site

I have been looking for Al-Jazeera's site for a week.   Last week the English language site was hacked.  Now it seems to be up.   It presents an interesting view of the conflict.

Wiki as a Collaborative Content

Wiki as a Collaborative Content Tool.

Good in-depth article on wikis by someone with a background in information science.

Then there's the new issue of Searcher, which includes David Mattison's article Quickiwiki, Swiki, Twiki, Zwiki and the Plone Wars Wiki as a PIM and Collaborative Content Tool. [Underway in Ireland via The Shifted Librarian via Peter Scott's Library Blog]. 

[Ross Mayfield's Weblog]

Good article on communities of practice and how to isolate people who are the most knowledgeable.

The dullest blog in the world

Man, this is dull.

Weblogs as filtering tools. Why

Weblogs as filtering tools.

Why blogging isn't a fad. Arnold Kling offers one of the best explanations I've seen of the value of blogging as a distributed information filtering mechanism.

"This filtering process makes all of us more efficient. Information with low value does not travel far. Information with high general value tends to travel the farthest. Information with low general value but high local value tends to reach interested people but then die out because as it gets passed along its value decays below the threshold. Everyone tends to receive information with a high value to them, and they avoid having to read information that has low value to them."


Gradually working off the backlog of items lurking in my news aggregator. This is, indeed, an excellent explanation of the value of weblogs in organizational settings and in communities of practice. I might have gotten to it earlier, but it's from another of those Corante blogs that continue to refuse to offer RSS feeds. I have yet to hear the argument about why RSS feeds are a bad thing from Corante's point of view. But until I have time to scrape these blogs into my aggregator I just don't have time to track them, no matter how excellent the content may be.

[McGee's Musings]

Publishing a project weblog.

Configuring Movable Type
A couple of years ago I predicted that Weblogs would emerge within the enterprise as a great way to manage project communication. I'm even more bullish on the concept today. If you're managing an IT project, you are by definition a communication hub. Running a project Weblog is a great way to collect, organize, and publish the documents and discussions that are the lifeblood of the project and to shape these raw materials into a coherent narrative. [Full story at InfoWorld.com] ... [Jon's Radio]

First look at InfoPath. InfoPath

First look at InfoPath.

InfoPath in design mode

Gathering XML data

A streamlined view of the data

A minimal view of the data

The next version of Microsoft Office is, among other things, a family of XML editors. I have discussed the XML modes of Word and Excel (see "XML for the rest of us" and "Exploring XML in Office 11"), and described the newest member of this family, InfoPath 2003, a tool for gathering XML data (see "Ten things to know about Xdocs"). Now that I've had a chance to work with InfoPath, its role and value are becoming clearer. [Full story at InfoWorld.com] ... [Jon's Radio]

I have begun to explore Infopath as well and I think I will use it in a publishing project.  I will report on its functionality.

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