Monday, April 28, 2008

The Myths of Innovation

Wow, indeed, this is a great read! I just finished reading Scott Berkun's The Myths of Innovation. And I really enjoyed all of it. This book tries to summarize all that has been written about innovation and to debunk myths about innovation. I think Berkun really succeeded in doing this. His writing is transparent, insightful, honest and practical. Furthermore he was able to do this in just 170 pages. I was able to read it in two 1,5 hour flights.
What I missed and hoped he would write about is the topic 'open innovation'. I think much can be written about the myths of open innovation too. Or, maybe, what Berkun says about innovation simply applies to 'open innovation' as well.
To round up, I love the citation at the beginning of the Preface. I'll close with it.

By idolizing those whom we honor we do a disservice both to them and to ourselves… we fail to recognize that we could go and do likewise. - Charles V. Willie

Evaluating Fav.or.it - a new feed reader

Not to long ago I received an invite for the new feed reader fav.or.it. I wrote about this feed reader before and said I this seemed to be the new norm for reader.
Now that I've used fav.or.it I'm not as enthousiastic about it as I hoped to be. Fav.or.it looks great: great look and feel, very user-friendly. It's also a very social feed reader (sharing tags, feeds, most-read posts, etc. etc.)! But it's still really in beta. You're not able to add your own feeds yet. You can only subscribe to predefined feeds.
What I was most curious about was replying to feeds right from your feed reader. But for some reason, this doesn't work. I tried replying to some posts. The reply did not end up on the blog that I replied to. I thought: maybe this takes a while. So I waited some. But still it don't show up. My reply also didn't end up in the '(my) conversations' section... (By the way, it would be nice if you could add your own feeds, because replying to a big blog just to test fav.or.it functionality is tricky... I'd rather test it on my own blog for instance.)

I'm not giving up though! I like the concept
fav.or.it is showing and I'll keep following this reader.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Add Holidays to Your Calendar in Outlook

BNET Business Hacks pointed to this useful Outlook feature I didn't know existed: You can add a country's holidays to your Calender.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Working Transparently

On his blog David Gurteen points to an article he in InsideKnowledge titled "Open and Transparent". I must have missed this article... But I'm glad he pointed to it (again). It's a nice short article on the difference between 'open' and 'transparent'. And how these two worlds are changing (or must change) our life as knowledge workers. I was planning on summarizing it for you, but you just have to read it all. It's worth your time. I will pass on his definition of 'open' and 'transparent' for you:
If you are open-minded, not closed, you are open to new ideas, to new thoughts, to new people and to new ways of working. When you come across new things you are curious and eager to explore them. You are non-judgmental and you look to engage other people in conversation – not so much in debate, but more in dialogue.
(...)
If you are transparent, you work in a way which naturally enables people to see what you are doing. You publish your activity and your ‘work in progress’ as a by-product of the way that you work. You deliberately go out of your way to try to be honest and open about who you are. There is no fa├žade, no pretense – with you, people get what they see.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Who Says Print is Dead?

This post "Who Says Print is Dead?" by ReadWriteWeb is interesting! It shows nicely how online media is slowly taking over, but does not (totally) kill printed media. Printed and online media seem to amplify each other.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Google's Innovation Machine

Interesting HBR article and HBR Ideacast podcast by Tom Davenport on "Google's Innovation Machine". I didn't hear anything new, but what I like is the fact that this article summarizes practically all that has been said about Google innovative organization and working methods. Furthermore it also tries to make what Google is doing applicable to other companies. Enjoy!

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Six Key Dimensions of Understanding Media

Regularly I visit our wonderful company library and scan some of the new magazines we subscribe to. One of my favorites is MIT Sloan Management Review. In the Winter 2008 issue I bumped into an article with the interesting title: "The Six Key Dimensions of Understanding Media" by JoAnne Yates, Wanda J. Orlikowki and Anne Jackson. I read it and reread it. I like the idea of the article. Basically it describes a model, the Genre model, to help evaluate how new communication technology is used and fits in the organization.

However, after reading it, I had this strange feeling I wasn't getting the point of the article. The article says to evaluate e.g. the use of blogs by answering the why, what, who, where, when, how, context question. Ok, that's clear. But this is logical, right? Before you start using a new tool, think first. (I know most companies don't do this.) And yes, using this model shifts in tool use over the years can become clear too. But is that 'all' to this model or am I missing something? I thought I'd post this hear so hopefully you and/or the authors can help.

Applications open for the 2008 Global Intranet & Portal Strategies Survey

I'd like to make some noise for Jane McConnell's Global Intranet & Portal Strategies Survey 2008. She's been doing this for several years now. The results are very insightful. By participating to this survey you get a wonderful overview of the state-of-affairs of company intranet and portals, how companies organize their intranet and portals, roll them out, apply web 2.0 stuff to it, what technology platforms are used, etc. etc.
So, you want to join in and would like to know how? Please find more info here.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Enterprise RSS is (IT) Infrastructure

James Dellow has an interesting post on his ChiefTech blog about the question "Why focus on Enterprise RSS". At the end he points to some interesting slides about his view on Intranet 2.0 and he says:
RSS readers, forums, blogs and wikis are applications, but Enterprise RSS is part of the Intranet 2.0 infrastructure... and its only with the right infrastructure that users will be provided with the building blocks to meet emergent future needs.
I strongly agree with this statement. RSS must be seen as infrastructure. But not only intranet infrastructure, but also IT and Communication infrastructure, I'd say.
So, if RSS is infrastructure, I was wondering what your thoughts are on 'enterprise RSS servers' and RSS-ifying corporate information? What's your vision on these topics? How would you implement RSS in the enterprise?

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Will Everything be for Free in the Future?

There's been lots of buzz (e.g. this ReadWriteWeb article) about the Wired article "Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business" by Chris Anderson. It's a wonderful article, very thought-provoking.

Here are 2 examples of parts of the article that we can chew on:
The moment a company's primary expenses become things based in silicon, free becomes not just an option but the inevitable destination.
And:
Free shifts the economy from a focus on only that which can be quantified in dollars and cents to a more realistic accounting of all the things we truly value today.

Xerox Whitepaper - The “Less Paper” office


I agree with the statement made in the whitepaper that paper is becoming "a more temporary medium". I see that people still like to read from paper, comment on the paper, but after they process the comments in the digital document, they throw away the paper document.
In the whitepaper I missed why “paperless” is so hard (or what the real affordances of paper are). I appreciated the part on what Xerox is doing w.r.t. environmental issues.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Return on Influence

Calculating ROI of social media initiatives is being done, but can be hard. Debbie Weil has a different take. She says: Measure return on influence. This relates well to what Gartner calls "delayed ROI" w.r.t. social media implementations.

Managing tomorrow's people. The Future of work to 2020

Just wanted to point you to this interesting study by PriceWaterhouseCoopers on "Managing tomorrow's people. The Future of work to 2020". This report is set up along three lines, based on 3 future scenario's. The 3 scenario' are: "Small is beautiful", "Companies care" and "Corporate is king". I find the scenario's very realistic. I found "Small is beautiful" most interesting, because it relates to the Wikinomics principles. I'm curious what your take is on this report. Which scenario will become reality? Please let met know!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Dialogues House (2)

Sometimes you walk into a building and you just say: "Wow!". That's the experience I had when I visited the Dialogues House in Amsterdam. It's related to the ABN-Amro bank. As I wrote before I'd be there for a meeting with knowledge managers from large companies in The Netherlands. We had a great time. The meeting's topic was open innovation. The Dialogues House was set up to facilitate open innovation from inside and outside the bank.

We also walked through the building. Their website shows nicely how they built it up. I also made some pictures you can find here. Go and have a look!

Wiki ROI

Nice post by Jon Mell on "Wiki ROI". He relates to Luis Suarez's experiment to stop using email and tried to calculate what the return could be. But he also mentions that the business case cannot be fully addressed in hard figures. There's a soft side too that very hard to measure.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Update 7: Giving up on work e-mail and Wiki happiness

Luis Suarez gave us another update on his venture to give up on work email. Interestingly he remarks this week more emails were sent to him. He thinks this has to do with all the meetings he was in. Because people could not reach him using social media tools, they started emailing again! This relates very well to what Andrew McAfee calls "slack". For social media to be used, you need some slack in your work/work day. I wrote about that some time ago.

Luis also pointed to an interesting Wikinomics post titled "Wiki collaboration leads to happiness". This post has an interesting figure comparing wiki's to email. I agree with Luis that this figure can be applied to other social media tools as well.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Idea Sandbox website and blog

Just wanted to point you to this wonderful website and blog dedictated to "Remarkability, Creative Problem Solving, and Brand Building". It's called "Idea Sandbox". Just browsing through the site and reading the blog thrills me. The look-and-feel of the site and the content is really inspiring!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

User Interfaces Rapidly Adjusting to Information Overload

Nice post on ReadWriteWeb giving an overview of UI concepts that could help us overcome information overload (with several nice video demo's!). These could also address the integration of paper and digital documents, as I post before, relating to Microsoft Surface.

Beyond the Ordinary Resume

Nice post on 'the new resume' or 'do we still need a resume?' by Debra Murphey on Social Media Today Most companies still request a resume. This post states old resume's make you "ordinary". So, what isn't ordinary?
Everyone, whether you are an independent professional, business owner, or entreprenuer, should have the following in your social media portfolio:
  • Complete profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social networks relevant to your expertise.
  • A blog written with authenticity and expertise.
  • An about page on your blog that gives the reader a sense about who you are.
  • Comments on other blogs within your expertise that are thoughtful, professional and add value to the blog.
  • Put presentations you’ve given up on SlideShare and link to them from your About page. If you have a recording of the presentation, you can sync the audio with the slides.
I was wondering if companies are already doing this. Does anybody know?

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Are Young and Old Reading Less?

Stunning article on ReadWriteWeb about reading behaviour of young and old people. The numbers shocked me. I read a lot (books, paper articles, etc and of course webpages), but seem to be one of the people that will go extinct soon...
I was wondering what this implies for companies. Are people reading less and less reports, memo's, etc. inside organizations too? Looking around in the company I work for, I'd say 'yes'.

Talk about Real and Virtual Social Networks

Really interesting ITConversations talk with Valdis Krebs in the series "Interviews with Innovators". Krebs has been researching social networks for years. First and foremost real social networks, not virtual ones. He talks about how real and virtual social networks relate and what the limitations of virtual social networks are.
He says that current social network tools won't have long lives, because they don't map my real and complete social network. Social network tools based on email connections would be closer to reality, but isn't complete either.