The essence of Rod's proposal is great: Let's learn about KM by doing KM,
starting with the tools we currently have available. I'd be very
interested to see the reported results of a team doing KM using SDS.
Here's my proposal: How about studying and doing KM using the tools
already at our disposal, specifically this mailing list?
We already have one component of a DKR: the automatic archiving of this
list into a rudimentary, hierarchical structure. The question now is,
are there human methods that we can practice to further improve the
building and maintenance of this DKR?
I'll propose several, in no particular order. The first is a simple
one: format your messages intelligently and readably. Poor mail clients
seem to be the biggest culprit here, but a little human awareness goes a
long way in fixing this problem. In my opinion, e-mail should be
formatted for at most 70 character lines with hard-returns at the end of
each line. MIME messages should be avoided for standard, 7-bit ASCII
messages. This provides maximum readability for the majority of mail
clients, and also makes it easier to write translation tools that
automatically infer structure from unstructured text messages.
Second, someone should do a periodic summary of this mailing list, with
links to the appropriate threads and messages. As I mentioned earlier,
this is already practiced to good effect by several open source
(As a brief aside, I'd like to dispute Rod's earlier comment that
engineers don't seem to be anxious to practice KM. On the contrary, I
think that engineers are among the best practitioners of KM, and that many
of the more interesting innovations in KM have sprung specifically from
the open source community.)
Third, link to messages rather than quote them. This is one that Doug is
constantly promoting, and one that is nontrivial to do with the tools we
have at our disposal. It's one of those areas that immediately arises as
a necessary tool feature. Not surprisingly, the only two people who seem
to practice this -- Doug and Rod -- are people who have tools that support
this feature by providing granular addressability and some linking
Fourth, change the subject lines of e-mail to reflect the content of the
message, not the title of the thread. Lack of foresight has rendered the
subject header irrelevant. Most subject lines tell me nothing except the
subject of the first message in the thread and the fact that a message is
part of a thread. This latter feature is mostly unnecessary today, as
decent mail clients will use the In-Reply-To header.
Fifth, develop a charter for this mailing list. This is tremendously
challenging, especially for a list that has traditionally been broad in
scope, but I think it is vital for bringing focus to a forum.
Sixth, highlight significant points in messages by resending them
(preferably with a link to the original message) in new messages. Eric
has already been practicing this, where he will take a particularly
interesting paragraph in a long message, and resend it with a different
subject and some brief commentary.
These are just a few suggestions off the top of my head. I would
definitely like to see those interested in practicing good KM attempt to
incorporate some of these suggestions. I'd also love to see comments on
the above as well as new suggestions for practicing KM using existing
-- +=== Eugene Eric Kim ===== email@example.com ===== http://www.eekim.com/ ===+ | "Writer's block is a fancy term made up by whiners so they | +===== can have an excuse to drink alcohol." --Steve Martin ===========+
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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Sun Nov 26 2000 - 16:11:42 PST