This website covers knowledge management, personal effectiveness, theory of constraints, amongst other topics. Opinions expressed here are strictly those of the owner, Jack Vinson, and those of the commenters.

Information as cues to knowledge

Magdelena discusses some interesting ideas in PKM and "cues to knowledge."  The idea of "cues" suggests that all the information we put together is merely a mental cue to help people understand what it is we are trying to communicate.  As many people have said, one cannot write knowledge, at least in the sense of knowledge-in-action.  In this light, the more cues I can provide the eventual "user" of my bit of information, the more likely someone new will be able to make sense of the  The more context I can add to a document or email or voice mail, the more likely the recipients will be able to decipher and translate into something of import for them. 

If I am writing notes for myself, I can use my own language and abbreviations.  (She mentions the catch that if I am writing for my "future self," I need to be careful to use language or notes that will still make sense in a couple years.)  As my audience gets larger and the time factor gets longer, I need to be more careful about the words and language I use, so that I can best connect to those expected readers.  In an organization, where I know very few of the potential recipients of my cues, I have to put a lot of effort into writing well and providing enough context.  I wonder if this is some explanation as to why people don't participate in corporate KM projects? 

Magdelena draws this idea in a nice graphic that attempts to draw a continuum from personal KM to organizational KM.  And be sure to have a look at the comments, where there are some additional interesting thoughts. 

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