Phil Wollf summarizes a lot of the pros and cons heard in the discussion on corporate blogging. Fun read!0 Comments and 0 Trackbacks | Permalink
Olaf Brugman writes an interesting article on languagebarriers in the flow of knowledge. Taking two examples as mini-cases, the language zones at KnowledgeBoard and the huge translation effort at the EU to accomodate for now 12 and soon 24 languages.
In my comment to his posting I try to point out that centralized solutions to the language divide in my view won't work. Not adopting one language, and not going for the huge amount of work of having one centralized hub doing all the translation. Mechanical translation might offer a solution in the future, but not at the moment. I'd go for a decentralized way of looking at it.
So it's up to individuals to create a solution. To connect networks you need connectors, networkstraddlers. Through them knowledge and information can flow between two otherwise seperated networks. So would it be possible to identify and reinforce those Connectors? They would not need to be omniglot or even polyglot, just one or perhaps two foreign language skills would suffice.
These connectors would be able to mesh the different language-networks, and we can even work out mathematically how much meshing would be needed to make it robust.
Of course this would not result in immediate translation of texts into all languages. It would however result in ideas being transmitted throughout the whole system. When enough interest is generated within a certain circle (tipping point like) this subset of people will arrange for translation, on the basis of perceived needs. Once translated a document has become a more 'spreadable meme' and will travel through the system once more.
As I blog in three different languages I can use myself to reflect upon.
I did not start my multilingual blog to cross barriers. I started it to build three geographically different networks. That means that I only sporadically write the same entries in two or three of my blogs. Of course, ideas do get crossfertilized. When writing about the development of the knowledge economy in the Netherlands I do take into account what I know from english sources, and when I write about blogging in the workplace in German I do use previous articles in English and Dutch. So translation is not a goal in itself, and that is how it should be. The perceived need to communicate is the driving force here, and maybe we could deliberately boost that by working on the connectors between language networks.
Also see Blogalization where an active attempt is made to lower language thresholds for bloggers.
(UPDATE: Jeff Jarvis reflects some more on connections between different language blogs.)3 Comments and 3 Trackbacks | Permalink
I am looking for a new job.
Am prepared to telework (although unlikely in what I'm looking for), and am certainly prepared to move from my current location, basically to anywhere within Europe / North America (am fluent in Dutch, English and German).
Am interested in anything that lets me work and grow in the field of cultural and process change in organisations and improving quality of products and services by improving the lot of knowledgeworkers while boosting the organisation they work for. Have extensive experience in introducing technologies in organisations and the effect they have on people and organisational structure, and broad knowledge of knowledge and cultural issues in organisations.
Would very much enjoy a place where part of my time can be spent actively looking and browsing the world for new developments and determining their opportunities and significance, combined with tasks meant to implement those ideas that look most promising. Would expect strategic vision and leadership of any employer. Would also expect employer to appreciate strong and articulated opinions.0 Comments and 3 Trackbacks | Permalink
Ideas for essays
Almost two weeks ago I had an interesting conversation with Lilia about her PhD, and how to drive formulating a good and coherent proposal forward. In the course of that discussion two themes emerged, which Lilia deemed outside her scope, but are well inside mine.
In order not to forget, I'm writing them down here, because it might be some time before I get around to actually writing it. At the moment my attention to my study in philosophy of science is severely limited if not non-existent, due to work related stuff, and me looking for a new job. And of course, the exstensive rebuilding that started in our house today and which will continue for the coming three weeks does not help either.
1. If the knowledgeworker is better served with medieval guild-like master/apprentice situations for e.g. training and knowledgesharing, and knowledgesharing itself becomes much more likely when knowledge workers look at themselves as artisans, in stead of pieces in a hierarchical machine, this set of questions arises:
Historically which reasoning was behind the organizational decisions industrial revolution came up with, and exactly which of those decisions do we now find counterproductive? Historically which traits of the artisan/guild view on work have been thrown overboard with the industrial revolution, and would be feasible again now to address the limitations felt in the current situation.
And what, if anything, should we keep from the industrial era organisational forms?
2. Technology always has behaviour 'scripted' into it by the designer(s). Users also always find novel ways of using technologies, not intended or foreseen in the design stage. Which behaviours are scripted into blogging tools, and which behaviours have been triggered by the emergence of the technology? What white spots does this show, what areas for improvement are possible based on that overview?3 Comments and 0 Trackbacks | Permalink
In the last two days the blog has been hit by automated commentspam. Since deleting them by hand is tedious, especially since I more or less feel obligated to correct the problem at the moment I find out about it, I've been looking for dealing with it.
I found (don't know where I saw it, but whoever pointed me towards it Thanks!) this description of making comment spam disappear from sight, by Jay Allen.
I followed instructions but can't get it to work properly. I get syntax errors with the code Jay provides. So for now: automated spam will still show up.
But then again it will only provide a test case to see if the hack works.