I begin this presentation with a confession. First I must ask – how many of you have heard of Web 2.0? Of those who have heard of it, how many know what it means? Well, here’s my confession . . . I don’t know what it means either. What I mean by that is, there is no one, agreed-to definition of Web 2.0; surely none I can find. To be sure, there’s been a lot of marketing hype and virtually every vendor wants you to believe they have the answer for you. However, our purpose here is to understand what Web 2.0 means for us and, especially how it fits into an enterprise framework that puts great emphasis on knowledge management.
This is an example of one aspect of Web 2.0 being used, and slightly modified, to describe itself. As normally presented, this would be a tag cloud (weighted list) representing the frequency of use of tags by font size or color. In this case, it’s showing a ranking of Web 2.0 from the term, through its major conceptual framework, to specific uses and applications that embody these concepts. The intranet is a microcosm of the Internet. The things that can be done on the Internet can also be done on the intranet. The difference is in degree and the uses to which its capabilities are put. Therefore, the numerous concepts which distinguish Web 2.0 from previous uses of the Internet are equally applicable inside the firewall, though the resulting applications may be different and, possibly, difficult to recognize. The next slide gives a simple overview of some of the concepts, key characteristics, and development languages involved in the application of Web 2.0, as well as their relationships to each other.
OK – I was just kidding about the simple part. Actually, what we are here interested in isn’t so much the architecture, but rather what uses can we put all this to in order to further our business objectives and goals. We can pretty much leave it to IT and the assorted folks who care about and will directly interact with the gears and pulleys behind the curtain. We need only concern ourselves with our everyday “pursuit of excellence”. So . . .
Keep in mind our interest in computers and technology is not so much in what it does or how it does it, but rather in how it can be used to enhance and promote useful human activity, whether in business, politics, NGOs, Municipal governments, education, medicine, or the pursuit of science and advanced technology. Too many people and too many vendors have dwelled on the tools of Web 2.0, but it isn’t really the tools that are important, at least not as important as the uses to which they are put.
For all the design patterns, key characteristics, software development languages, and applications (and, believe me, I’ve really only shown a portion of what has been, and continues to be, discussed) I showed you two charts ago, for our purposes they all boil down to three things we need to concern ourselves with.
Here is a chart showing the results of an InformationWeek survey of 250 business technology professionals regarding which Web 2.0 tools they found most useful. I find it interesting that instant messaging is at the top of the list. While it is arguable if there is, indeed, a generational gap that greatly affects the adoption and use of social tools, it’s clear to me that something like that exists with respect to IM. From my admittedly unscientific research at my place of work I have found that nearly all the college hires use IM, while most of the older employees (most of whom have children the age of our college hires) think of it merely as a toy; a way for friends to uselessly gab about life and love, etc. IMO, this is extremely short-sighted and exhibits a short-sightedness that seems to prevent some from looking at these tools creatively and imagining how they can be used for business purposes.
Now . . . I don’t want to dwell too much on tools, but I do want to cover a few of the more important ones, just so you can get an idea of what is happening and what the possibilities might be for your organization.
Do any of you – I’m sure there are some – have a personal blog? Are there any blogs available where you work and do you avail yourself of their presence, either by blogging yourself or by commenting on blogs you encounter? Blogging is, perhaps, one of the most widely used communication tool that fits within the many definitions of Web and Enterprise 2.0.
What really got me going about Web 2.0 and trying to figure out how to implement its concepts within the firewall of PWR was twofold. First, I strongly believed – actually felt I could see – the basic tools to help facilitate this kind of transition were already in place. What we were using wasn’t all that much different than what was becoming possible with new functionality and capability; what was different was people could have collaborative conversations. Second was my belief that what McLuhan and Wesch were saying fit ever so neatly into the piece that had been glaringly absent in all my KM implementation experience . . . culture.
The use of Web, or Enterprise, 2.0 concepts and technologies is going to require a seismic shift in our culture. Here is a humorous example (at least I hope we can see the humor in it) of how NOT to use Web/Enterprise 2.0 tools.
In 1999, at the 35 th anniversary celebration of MIT’s Laboratory for Computing Science, Tim Berners-Lee – who, in 1989, invented the World-Wide Web – spoke of his vision of what the web would be and how he expected it to develop and be used. He noted he was horrified to learn what most people meant when the used the work “interactive” was that you could click on links to move through the web. He, however, was far more interested in the type of interactivity that involved the collective and collaborative authorship and development of ideas and content on the web. With the advent of Web 2.0 capabilities, it would appear the web is finally moving in a direction likely to achieve the original intent and vision put forth by Berners-Lee.
This chart shows some of the things that distinguish Web 2.0 from Web 1.0
On March 24, 2006 Professor Andrew McAfee of the Harvard Business School wrote his first post on Enterprise 2.0., thinking he had coined the expression. He first defined it as “ the use of freeform social software within companies . He further defined “freeform” as meaning the software behind it was most or all of the following: Optional Free of up-front workflow Egalitarian, or indifferent to formal organizational identities Accepting of many types of data He later pointed out the term had actually first been used in the UK on February 20, 2006. Later that year, he refined his definition of Enterprise 2.0 as “ the use of emergent social software platforms within companies, or between companies and their partners or customers” . He also came up with a mnemonic, shown here, that I think makes it a bit easier to remember what Enterprise 2.0 consists of. Inasmuch as authorship is a vital component of E2.0, thinking of an old (oops! – dating myself) handheld chalkboard, made out of slate, works rather neatly.
In late 2007, Dione Hinchcliffe revisited Professor McAfee’s definition and added one of his own - “Social applications that are optional to use , free of unnecessary structure , highly egalitarian , and s upport many forms of data .” He also came up with his own mnemonic that I also find easy to remember as it is evocative of the concept of the flattening of enterprise IT structure.
The first is communication; the second collaboration, and; the third is findability. All three of these are, to some degree, interrelated – as well as encompassed within a framework of social computing.
And all this is directed toward the goal of increased innovation and competitiveness.
Fredrick Taylor introduced the idea of “Scientific Management” to the study of workplace efficiency. He also introduced the time and motion study concept. Although dead for nearly a century, you’d be hard-pressed to find much additional work refining his positions or taking the enormous changes of the past 93 years into account. Arguably, the capabilities being realized by the changes inherent in Web/Enterprise 2.0 are bringing us to a tipping point where, regardless of the lack of formal study of work and its improvement, those people using the tools are recreating the workplace in their own image. This is further developed by the competitive pressures requiring organizations to open up their processes to more and more of their workers as the need for innovation spurs the requirement for communication, collaboration, and transparency.
Taylor concentrated rather single-mindedly (and ruthlessly some have contended) on efficiency.
Today there are many who believe, as I do, that efficiency without effectiveness is a recipe for disaster, as it tends toward single-minded pursuit of narrow goals and, ultimately, inefficient sub-optimization.
As the web first developed it was necessary for authors to be at least somewhat familiar with a markup language, generally HTML. As the web grew, programs became available that required far less knowledge (e.g. Front Page, Dreamweaver, etc.) of such a language, yet still required a fairly sophisticated ability to understand the nature of HTML in order to truly get value from the tool. Furthermore, HTML is primarily about presentation and does not describe content in any meaningful or useful way other than to allow for its presentation on a page.
With the advent of languages that were more concerned with describing the content than its form (e.g. XML, XHTML), the web began to become more accessible to average users, as they had to understand less code to be able to get at, and display in a form useful for them, the content being published on the web. As well, the development of other languages provided for the presentation of web-based services, rather than client-server or client-resident software packages, that allowed for the authorship of virtually anyone who has an idea, knows a bit about computers, and can type. I suggest this means the intranet can now be more fun, more engaging, and far more useful and productive for any enterprise in which it is pursued. Thank you.
Web 2.0 Design Concepts & Their Application to the Enterprise
The Second Annual Southern California Knowledge Management Forum Rick Ladd Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Web 2.0 Design Concepts and Their Application to the Enterprise
What is . . . “ Like many important concepts, Web 2.0 doesn't have a hard boundary, but rather, a gravitational core. You can visualize Web 2.0 as a set of principles and practices that tie together a veritable solar system of sites that demonstrate some or all of those principles, at a varying distance from that core.” Tim O’Reilly
Communication Collaboration Findability http://www.informationweek.com/news/management/showArticle.jhtml;jsessionid=JFOHHSLKYRFH2QSNDLPSKH0CJUNN2JVN?articleID=197008457&pgno=2&queryText=&isPrev= Information Week February, 2007
Web 2.0 is a set of economic, social, and technology trends that collectively form the basis for the next generation of the internet - a more mature, distinctive medium characterized by user participation, openness, and network effects. Tim O’Reilly
The Past as Present <ul><li>“ The idea was not just that it should be a big browsing medium. The idea was that everybody would be putting their ideas in, as well as taking them out. This is not supposed to be a glorified television channel .” * </li></ul>* Tim Berners Lee – Talk to the LCS 35th Anniversary Celebrations, Cambridge, MA 1999 - http://www.w3.org/1999/04/13-tbl.html
Exactly How Subtle are These? So Web 2.0 is not so different from what Web 0.0 was meant to be. But it is different, vastly different, from what the Web became. Web 2.0 Web 1.0 Web applications Web forms Sharing Owning Wireless Wires Tags Taxonomy RSS Portals Blogs Home pages XML HTML Peer-to-peer Client-server Communities Companies Writing Reading