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Social Collaboration in the Intranet
Social Collaboration Networking and Knowledge Management from the intranet perspective
Curated by Bert Oberholz
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How did I come to Social Collaboration?

How did I come to Social Collaboration? | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it

I held this little personal and authentic speech as intro to my presentation at Lotusphere 2012:

 

When I was a boy back in the 70ies, I loved to watch US TV crime series. Like “Kojak”. Every time a murder occurred and the investigation got stuck, Kojak would say: "We've got to ask the computer!". They would go into a computer room and would type in some clues of the crime like: brown hair, blue eyes, bullet between the eyes.

 

Magnetic tapes in racks would spin back and forth and after a while, the printer would start to rattle and print five or so names of suspects. Three of them would already have been in jail and one would be dead. Kojak would tear the paper out of the printer -- he knew what to do next ...

 

Of course, I was very impressed by the computers. One night I asked my mother, "How did the computer know?" To my disappointment, she told me that computers didn't know anything at all; they had to be fed with information first. Her response bothered me. "How stupid can this be? I have to tell it the answers before I can ask for them?" My interest in computers vanished for a while.

 

In the 80ies, I bought some home computers including an Apple II and studied computer sciences. On my first assignment, I worked with PDP 11's and VAXes. Ever since, I have been looking for a computer that would give me answers I did not have to enter in advance.

 

I know what some of you are saying right now: "That guy was looking for Google!", or: "He is talking about the IBM Watson!" But no. I finally found my grail in social networking and collaboration. It gives me answers to questions like "Who is a recognized expert in topic X?" / "Where can I find information on topic Y that was also helpful for colleagues?"

 

For methods that motivate users to contribute information and qualify it as a group, social collaboration is imperative. Social networking and collaboration offer techniques which have been proven on the internet and are absolutely integral requirements for companies today.

Using these facilitating networks gives the result as more than the individual pieces of information entered by each user.

 

-- After the presentation i said:

 

If your boss ever gets murdered, Kojak might come over and check your Connections.

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Can We Give Knowledge Away?

Can We Give Knowledge Away? | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
Bert Oberholz's insight:

There are a lot of articles and posts on the web written by experts about sharing Knowledge. These discussions are mainly pointing out the benefits and risks for individuals and companies and tools that support it. I found one aspect missing I consider as important for everyone who is afraid of or at least reluctant “to give his/her knowledge away”.

 

When I studied computer science a major part of my curriculum was math. I never questioned that fact at that time. Since then I haven’t used that knowledge often but I own it and at least I can share it with high-school students like my own children and also my friends’ children that are struggling with algebra at school.

 

One subject I had to learn was “Approximation Theory” and eventually the inevitable exam was coming up. As most of my fellow students I owned a programmable pocket calculator, the standard at that time was the “Sharp PC-1401”.

 

We were allowed to use our pocket calculators including the programmable ones during the exam. The only condition was that we had to write down not only the final result of each calculation but also all intermediate results. 

 

In “Approximation Theory” you have to calculate the same steps over and over again to come closer and closer (but not exactly) to the result.

Early computers and pocket calculators where predestined for this type of calculation. So I programmed all like 10 different methods we had learned into my “Sharp PC-1401”. Of course I made sure that not only the result but all required intermediate results were displayed for convenient subscription to the paper. The program worked fine.

 

I discussed this with my fellows and we found that this approach fully complied with the given rules. Someone soldered a cable with which I “shared” my “Knowledge” to other calculators of the same type.

 

Needless to say, my exam went very well. All my results were correct and I finished ahead of time. Some of my fellows were also successful while others couldn’t use the program because they hadn’t understood how to operate it (i.e. how to make use of my knowledge).

 

o As a result I had learned all the methods thoroughly because I had to break them down to a level a calculator at that time could process. I learned them even better than by practicing exercises.

 

o My fellow students who also made it utilized my knowledge (I was their hero, at least for while). But did they really learn their lesson? No, not necessarily, but at least they learned to make use of “external” knowledge to succeed in a problem (the exam) they were confronted with.

 

o Those that couldn’t use the program received the same bits and bytes of my knowledge as all of us had but unfortunately we unable to make use of it.

 

o But most important:Two of them reviewed my code and came up with enhancements they shared back with me. The three of us learned from each other on how to program for faster execution, stronger “user guidance” and higher accuracy. :-)

 

In my opinion knowledge is that portion of our brains' content that can be transferred trough a cable. It is pure data that you gained by learning it. You selected what source to obtain knowledge from, what knowledge to learn and you filtered it by what you needed or were interested in and transformed it the way it fits best into your brain. Learning Knowledge is sometimes hard work. It is like building muscles by repeatedly lifting weights. You cannot “share” that process nor can you share your ability to combine different pieces of your knowledge in a creative, innovative and maybe unconventional way in order to solve a new problem.

All you can share is the pure data that fits through a cable, in a post, in a speech or on a piece of paper. Then it will start aging and has to be kept up-to-date and to be validated permanently on both sides. "Nothing is as old as the newspaper from yesterday" is a German saying which holds true for knowledge, too.

 

Sharing Knowledge can give you recognition and reputation. You can pose with your (knowledge-) muscles. Your personal ability and effort to gain Knowledge and to leverage it to solve problems stays with you. Nobody can take it through a cable from you (a least not today) as nobody can capture your soul by taking a photograph of you!

Your value as an employee or even as a human should not depend on exclusively owning a piece of data or on an ability that a programmable calculator or a database has as well.

“Learning Organization”, “Knowledge Management”, … are just interim phrases the are used to illustrate new concepts in an easy way -- like the “Horseless Coach”, today known as a “Car”. They will disappear as soon as sharing knowledge and learning from each other has become a self-evident part of our daily work.

Don’t forget to recommend this article if you find it recommendable or to comment on it. ;-)

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Rainer Gimbel's comment, June 10, 2013 3:20 PM
Well, your blog was worth me setting up a scoop-it acount. ;-) Always a pleasure "sharing knowledge" with you! Very nice piece. Another very wise argument for sharing knowledge is mentioned in Luis Suarez Video 'Outside of the inbox': "I don't want to be the bottleneck anymore". Oh, and I would most likely not have been able to use your program... ;)
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SharePoint-Yammer integration promising, but a long-term plan - Computerworld

Bert Oberholz's insight:

When you click on the Yammer link, it'll open up a new browser window and ask you to sign into Yammer,"

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Socialize Me: iEnterprises Demonstrates Solution to Connect Facebook and Twitter to IBM Connections

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Make Recognition Your Superhero!

Make Recognition Your Superhero! | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
Disengagement is an evil villain… Recognition to the rescue! Source: INFOGRAPHIC Recognition to the rescue! by Achievers An evil villain is roaming our workplaces. Employees are fleeing in droves as this evil-doer pilfers profits and steal souls.
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Which Vendors Dominate Enterprise Collaboration? - The BrainYard - InformationWeek

Which Vendors Dominate Enterprise Collaboration? - The BrainYard - InformationWeek | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
What will the social software market look like in four years? IDC's market share report offers some early clues.
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The Bayer home page back in 1997

The Bayer home page back in 1997 | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
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What's the elevator pitch for enterprise social tools? - Column Two

What's the elevator pitch for enterprise social tools? - Column Two | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
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11 Reasons Why Social Business is Like Dating | Jeffbullas's Blog

11 Reasons Why Social Business is Like Dating | Jeffbullas's Blog | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
What makes social business comparable to dating? What useful advice can we take from our dating experience? Too many companies are out shopping for a spouse and jumping right to the big question of ‘will you marry me?
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10 things you should measure during your enterprise social network adoption | The Social Enterprise Transformation Blog by BroadVision

10 things you should measure during your enterprise social network adoption | The Social Enterprise Transformation Blog by BroadVision | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
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How to Get the Most out of Status Updates

How to Get the Most out of Status Updates | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
How to Get the Most out of Status Updates
Carol Sumner, IBM Senior Accelerated Value Leader

 

My favorite part of IBM Connections is reading my colleagues' status updates.
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Web 2.0 und Interne Kommunikation. 11 Regeln für Wiki, Blog und Co. | Besser 2.0

Web 2.0 und Interne Kommunikation. 11 Regeln für Wiki, Blog und Co. | Besser 2.0 | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
Wenn es im Unternehmen einen Bereich gibt, den die Möglichkeiten von Social Software am unmittelbarsten betreffen, dann ist es die Interne Kommunikation.
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The 5 W’s of Enterprise Social Networks | Social Enterprise Today

The 5 W’s of Enterprise Social Networks | Social Enterprise Today | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
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(R)Evolution: The Past, Present and Future of the Social Enterprise

(R)Evolution: The Past, Present and Future of the Social Enterprise | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
“You say you want a revolution?” On the White Album, John Lennon and The Beatles famously asked that question, and over the last two years or so the champions of enterprise social networking have been quick to proclaim an answer in the affirmative.
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The Sisyphean Problem Of Email | TechCrunch

The Sisyphean Problem Of Email | TechCrunch | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
Advice that should be given to modern people considering marriage: "Before you marry, consider this, 'Is this the person I'd like to watch stare at their phone for the rest of my and their life?
Bert Oberholz's insight:

“Email is a to-do list given to you by other people”

Via @ahshu

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You Can't Just Be a Social Business - You Need To BE a Social Business — Danny Brown

You Can't Just Be a Social Business - You Need To BE a Social Business — Danny Brown | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
What makes a social business? Has the recent social media gold rush effect diluted what it actually means to be a social business?
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Using Social Business To Manage by Walking Around

Using Social Business To Manage by Walking Around | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
Adi Gaskel discusses the need to manage social business by simply walking around the organization.
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Deutsche Firmen entdecken Alternative zur E-Mail

Deutsche Firmen entdecken Alternative zur E-Mail | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
40 Jahre nach ihrer Erfindung gilt die E-Mail als veraltet. Die E-Mail-Flut ist kaum noch zu bewältigen. Deswegen gehen viele Firmen jetzt neue Wege – und verändern ihre Kommunikation grundlegend.
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infoarch: Why do we share?

infoarch: Why do we share? | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
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Why Email Needs A Facelift | Six Pixels of Separation - Marketing and Communications Insights - By Mitch Joel at Twist Image

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Transformational CIOs Need to Promote Business Social Networking - The CIO Report - WSJ

Enterprise level social networking can drive innovation and business transformation when an innovative CIO takes charge as genuine partner to the organization.
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IBM Takes the Wraps off Connections 4 - Michael Sampson on Collaboration

IBM Takes the Wraps off Connections 4 - Michael Sampson on Collaboration | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
In late August I posted about the imminent release of Version 4 of IBM Connections, a suite of applications that supports team collaboration, enterprise community formation, and social sharing in a business context.
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How Social Business is revolutionizing the way we interact at work!

How Social Business is revolutionizing the way we interact at work! | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
Here’s a summary table I put together to show how we can work more effectively using social tools for common work tasks.  Thanking Colleagues Common Approach Results Send thank you e-mail Copy ever...
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The Content Economy: Email is the biggest productivity drain for knowledge workers

The Content Economy: Email is the biggest productivity drain for knowledge workers | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
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Collaboration Use Cases for Executives

Collaboration Use Cases for Executives | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
A few days ago my friend Karthik (who works at Salesforce) called me up to get some ideas and advice on collaboration use cases for senior executives.
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Breaking the chain – death to email « Intranet Benchmarking Forum

Breaking the chain – death to email « Intranet Benchmarking Forum | Social Collaboration in the Intranet | Scoop.it
Being a recent arrival to the hilly city by the sea that is Brighton, England, IBF dispatched me off to the Meaning conference, organized by Nixon-McInnes.
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