Back up to Elayne Coakes' home page from the URL you suggest and you will
find links to a number of useful papers, one of which is
in which she orbits around definitions of knowledge. An excerpt:
"How Can We Define Knowledge?
There are many definitions in the literature as to what knowledge consists
of and how it can be distinguished from data or information. Ackoff himself
says that data are symbols that represent the properties of objects and
events. Information is processed data and is contained in descriptions of
'who', 'what' 'where' etc. Knowledge is conveyed by instructions and
understanding by explanations.
Knowledge can be described as being either Tacit or Explicit.
Tacit knowledge is:
subconsciously understood or applied
difficult to articulate
developed from direct action and experience
shared through conversation, story-telling etc
can be precisely and formally articulated
is easy to codify, document, transfer, share
There are several different types of knowledge that we can distinguish. In
particular theorists have discussed declarative knowledge ( which is
knowledge about something - a shared understanding of concepts,
categories); procedural knowledge (which is knowledge of how something
happens); and causal knowledge (which is knowledge of why something happens
and can thus enable strategy formulation).
Additionally knowledge can be considered general. That is a broad type of
knowledge that is publicly available and independent of events.
Alternatively it can be considered specific, which is context related and
which needs focal knowledge in order to be described and meaningful. These
categories are different but complementary to the seven ways of knowing
discussed by Lazear 1991.
Knowledge Plus Understanding
To return to Ackoff's quotation discussed at the beginning of this paper,
knowledge without understanding is only a part of the equation. Introna
 also discusses this aspect when looking at the idea of the
hermeneutic circle. He argues that information must change the recipient,
it must lead to a level of interpretation and understanding. The
hermeneutic circle is the dialectic process of understanding."
At 05:29 PM 10/23/2001 +0200, you wrote:
>Thanks for this great post Jack. I browsed through it and I like the
>approach of attempting to reconcile technology and appreciation. I also
>need to re-read Pirsig's book...
>Actually, King's objectives are very similar to the Socio-Technical
>approach. A 50 year old approach to organizational change which advocates
>the simultaneous and continuous optimization of the social and technical
>sides of an organization. Check out the book called The New Socio-Tech:
>>From: Jack Park [mailto:email@example.com]
>>Sent: dimanche, 21. octobre 2001 18:20
>>Subject: [unrev-II] Nailing Jello To The Wall
> From the top of the page:
>"You look pretty much
>the same as I
>and our alphabet begins
>with an "A" and even our
>show the same
>when scrawled on a
>But I don't understand how you
>the world from behind
>the screen when I look in from the
>And I wonder
>is there room for me back there
>or for you out here
>or maybe we can just
>around the boundaries and
>-- sjking, '97
>The page is about communication: programmers and users.
>"This research grew out of my proposal that an in-depth study of the
>relational differences and similarities of people in the roles of
>programmer and user would show that this often-perceived gap is less
>dichotomous than either side of the communication struggle may assume. I
>found, however, evidence that continues to suggest that there is indeed a
>strong difference between the ways of thinking, so the bulk of my analysis
>continued with this finding in mind. Robert Pirsig (Zen and the Art of
>Motorcycle Maintenance, 1974) draws distinctions between classical versus
>romantic ways of understanding, then bridges this gap with "quality" -- an
>identifiable, yet elusive concept and reality. This Action Research
>Practicum draws heavily upon both my own and Pirsig's philosophies of
>technology and quality and how differing world views color the
>understanding between different groups."
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