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3.2 (2B): Developing a relational model of the Powerdown Show programme

In this activity you will be challenged to reinterpret the following programme extracted from the Powerdown Show DVD: Energy Descent Pathways. The reason this programme was selected, from the many audio-visual programmes currently available online that tackle environmental and social issues, was because it presents an "ecotopian" approach to tackling the converging social, economic and environmental crises. Your challen
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Stage 3: Relevant systems and root definitions

The issues and key tasks extracted from the rich picture become the basis for defining what are called the ‘relevant systems’. For example, suppose the problem situation is a deteriorating performance in a call centre. One of the issues might be the (high) turnover of call centre operators. This might lead (depending on the point of view taken) to an idea of the call centre as an ‘employment-providing system’ or an ‘entertainment system’. There is no reason to restr
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Acknowledgements

Acknowledgements

Prepared for the Course Team by Simon Buckingham Shum

Except for third party materials and otherwise stated (see terms and conditions), this content is made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Licence


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4.20 Technologies and explicit knowledge continued

In the future we will see the fusion of statistical analyses of documents, agents, ontologies, metadata and informal annotation/discussion. Ontological tagging with metadata would allow authors to express their own deep understanding of the domain which may draw on knowledge that is not in the text of documents. This would allow experts to set a document in context in the light of developments since the document was written, or to encode relationships between documents that show important con
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4.15.1 Ontologies

We noted earlier that, in philosophy, an ontology refers fundamentally to ‘being’, or ‘what can be’. In the field of artificial intelligence the term ‘ontology’ has been appropriated to mean a ‘reusable terminological scheme’ or, if you prefer, a ‘conceptualisation’: a scheme for providing a rigorous description of the concepts, attributes and interrelationships deemed relevant to describe a particular aspect of the world. Its precision means that
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4.8.1 Capturing meetings

Internet meetings and broadcasts can be easily recorded and replayed because everything is mediated digitally: the text of emails, the audio stream and the slides used. However, face-to-face meetings are by far still the most common way to present and discuss issues in organisations, and the richness of personal presence makes them unlikely to disappear. How can face-to-face meetings be ‘captured’? Traditional written minutes provide a rough summary of points discussed, but provide o
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3.4.1 Integrating memory systems into the flow of work

There has been a substantial amount of research interest over the last decade in group/organisational memory systems. For example, software researchers have investigated the possibility of capturing design rationale, the key reasoning that underpins design decisions (Moran and Carroll, 1996). However, time and again projects have failed. A given information codification scheme encourages particular ways of thinking about information and the problem at hand: typically, information must
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3.3.1 Metaphors for organisational memory systems

Section 2 argued for a model of knowledge deriving from the situated interpretation of abstract representations. There is an active process by which different interpretations may result from a given information source. This is in contrast to the popular notion that knowledge can be unproblematically encoded and digitally stored and accessed.

Bannon and Kuutti (1996) argue that the term ‘organizational memory’ is widely used to mean a repository based on an implicit ‘mem
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3.1 A knowledge management technology framework

In the introduction to a book on knowledge management technologies, Borghoff and Pareschi (1998) described a framework for organisational memory that has been developed within Xerox to promote understanding of the roles and interplay between different technologies (Figure 4).

Figure 4
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2.4 Codification and formalisation continued

An important point is that the process of ‘objectifying’ knowledge brings with it a gradual change in the knowledge represented, because content and form are inextricably linked. McLuhan's famous quotation ‘the medium is the message’ highlights this phenomenon, but overstates the case a little. We can say that the medium shapes the message, as follows:

Figure 3
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2.3.1 From tacit pre-understanding to symbolic representation

This section reflects many of the critiques that have been made of efforts to apply technology to knowledge work without taking seriously the differences between human and artificial knowledge representations. Stahl (1993a,b) has presented an informative analysis of the transformation of knowledge from tacit to explicit to formally codified representations in computer-interpretable form, emphasising the centrality of interpretation situated in the workplace (Figure 2).

Stahl also seeks
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2.3 Codification and formalisation

Much of the knowledge management literature argues the importance of making tacit knowledge explicit, and then codified. For instance, an explicit goal when auditing intellectual capital is to identify human capital as one of the key assets that give an organisation its true value. Some organisations are realising that a large quantity of their ‘assets’ leave the office for home each evening, perhaps never to return, and as a consequence want to capture these in a less vulnerable for
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1.4 Aims

The aims of this unit are:

  • to develop an understanding of the relationships between information, interpretation, knowledge and computer-based representations

  • to summarise the range of different technologies that are available and on the horizon, and how they relate to different kinds of knowledge processes

  • to provide frameworks for thinking about technologies for managing knowledge, and for evaluating the claims made
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1 Knowledge technologies in context

There are many non-technological dimensions to understanding what it might mean to ‘manage knowledge’. However, technology is a thread weaving throughout, and seems now to be a fixture in knowledge management conferences and publications. ‘Knowledge’ can be managed as an objectified asset is a core idea in knowledge management. This unit will encourage you to question what this means in different contexts. ‘Context’ allows us to considere what value is added by view
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Learning outcomes

After studying this unit you should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the following issues, explaining in your own words, with appropriate examples:

  • the importance of representation, interpretation and formalisation in relation to ICT and managing knowledge;

  • the concept of a ‘community of practice’ in relation to ICT;

  • the main functions that ICT can play in helping to manage knowledge;

  • the potential, an
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Introduction

Knowledge technologies embody formal models of how the world works. If well designed, these models can relieve people of mundane activities and free them up to concentrate on what they do best. At their best, knowledge technologies can detect patterns in information which are too complex for humans to detect, or which they do not have time to detect, and can deliver this information to the right people, at the right time, in the right form for interpretation. This unit looks at the cor
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4.2 Pose

Pose followed expression on the list of the portrait photographer's priorities. A sitter's pose was intended to assist idealization by highlighting physical beauty. Photographers were required to select a pose that displayed the sitter to advantage.

If your sitter be tall and thin, or short and stout, select a pose which may render such peculiarities least prominent …A sitter's personal defects may be freque
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3.4 Characterisation and sexual stereotyping

In attempting to characterise their sitters, 19th-century commercial photographers did not intend or attempt any serious psychoanalytical exploration of individual character such as we perceive it today in our post-Freudian world. They sought instead to stereotype by age and sex within a narrow range of positive virtues, which had previously been approved, within the conventions of painting: modesty, simplicity and chastity for women; dignity, strength and nobility for men.

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Dynamics and Stability
This course will the student provide a background in advanced methods of dynamics and their application to relevant problems in aerospace engineering. The course is given in lecture form, and includes various elaborated example problems relevant for aerospace engineering. course content: Principles of dynamics: Newton's laws, motion with respect to non-inertial reference frames, fictitious forces, conservative systems, phase portraits, virtual work. Lagrangian dynamics: Generalised coordin
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Sextant Solutions
The earliest explorers did not have computers or satellites to help them know their exact location. The most accurate tool developed was the sextant to determine latitude and longitude. In this activity, the sextant is introduced and discussed with the class. Students will learn how a sextant can be a reliable tool that is still being used by today's navigators and how computers can help assure accuracy when measuring angles. Also, this activity will show how computers can be used to understand
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