Notes from Blogoz

No, I didn’t attend this one, but Nick Hodge presented at the Australian Blogging Conference this week and has shared some notes and his slides (there are some good cartoons) on business blogging.

Check the blogoz tag for other comments and feedback from the conference.

PS If you’re wondering why I’m posting this right now (around midnight local time), its because I’m multitasking while watching Australia vs Canada in the Rugby World Cup on TV 🙂

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Viewing organisations through a toilet paper tube

Reading this on How To Write Unmaintainable Code* by Roedy Green (care of JP) I thought how this could easily become… How To Make Unmaintainable Organisations and Ensure a job for life:

  • Your organisation should not look hopelessly unmaintainable, just be that way.
  • Managers view your organisation through a toilet paper tube. They can only see a tiny piece of your organisation at a time. You want to make sure they can never get at the big picture from doing that. You want to make it as hard as possible for them to find what they are looking for. But even more important, you want to make it as awkward as possible for them to safely ignore anything.
  • If we have full confidence in our management ability, then change management will be unnecessary. If we look at this logically, then any fool can recognise that change management does not even attempt to solve a problem with a business process, rather, this is a problem of emotional confidence. A more efficient solution to this lack of confidence issue is to eliminate change management completely and send our staff to self-esteem courses. After all, if we choose to do change management, then we have to use change management in every business change, but we only need to send staff to one course on building self-esteem. The cost benefit is as amazing as it is obvious.
  • Your Boss Knows Best – If your boss thinks that his or her 20 year old business experience is an excellent guide to contemporary management, rigidly follow all his or her recommendations. As a result, the boss will trust you. That may help you in your career.

Don’t forget to post you own suggestions!

PS The original version is published here, but is slightly harder to read.

Upward trend: Spending on information and collaboration technology in 2007 and into 2008

I’m not sure I agree with labelling this as “knowledge management”, but I’m not going to complain about the healthy interest in portals, content management, search, and collaboration predicted by AMR Research to grow by 16% in 2008 (in the US market at least). They also note a shift to hosted and open-source solutions.

However, what’s also interesting is that while they don’t mention “Web 2.0” anywhere, they do say “a growing number of needs and initiatives are left unsupported by established enterprise applications“. Hmm, I wonder if that’s what they are hinting at???

Care of Jack.

My take on Intranets ’07

I was only able to attend the afternoon session of Intranets ’07 (and my own workshop the following day), but I enjoyed each of the presentations from Chris Knowles (Heinz Australia), Keith De La Rue (Telstra) and Deanne Davidson (Thiess). Lucy Hoffman (Te Papa Tongarewa, Muesum of New Zealand), who stepped in as the conference chair, also did one the best conference wrap ups that I’ve heard in a long time.

My observations:

  • The level of awareness about Web 2.0 and social software has grown significantly in the last few years, with many at least experimenting on the Web if nothing else – however there is a clear challenge around the issue of openness vs control that people haven’t quite worked out yet (also see my next point);
  • The maturing of intranets into essential or important business tools (along with the influence of Web 2.0 and other trends) is also bringing the relationship between intranets and IT departments into the spotlight, however the underlying problem of who owns the intranet (HR, communications, IT, etc) hasn’t changed much in the last decade;
  • Also related to the above two points is the convergence of Intranet, intranets and extranets into just different interfaces for enterprise content – this is driven by the possibilities of the technology itself but also changing patterns of work; and
  • Finally, many of the core challenges of intranets haven’t changed despite the advances in technology, and they are the parts that relate to people and process – one participant described attending these conferences as a bit like therapy to remind himself that everyone faces similar problems!

BTW I didn’t know at the time, but Daryl from Anecdote was also there and he also comments on the openness vs control issue, saying:

there seemed to be a real dichotomy in the language being used. On the one hand speakers when describing their Intranets were talking about standards, compliance, custodians, approval, reviews, structured, efficiency, control, and ‘single source of truth’. Yet on the other hand, they mused that intranets were about ‘people, people, people’ and that they were trying to improve collaboration, increase knowledge sharing and foster networks.

Peta Hopkins has also shared her thoughts on the main conference day and promises to post more on the workshop she attended.

What do you think – how well can you relate to these issues for your own intranet?

The Art of Web 2.0 PowerPoint

A nice hat tip from James Robertson and others for my “lovely looking slides”.

It was actually a bit of a joke in the workshop that I told people I was envious of all the fancy looking Web 2.0 slides out there, produced of course on an iMac. This was the best I could do using a curvy font in PowerPoint and photos from Microsoft’s clipart collection*. However since I spent so much time (seriously, a lot of time) picking photos I’m very happy with the positive feedback!

Actually, by using Microsoft‘s clipart there is a bit of a hidden message there about form vs function…

*Tip: You can restrict your clipart search to just photos.

The talk on the street this weekend

I know I promised to post some comments about the Intranets ’07 conference and my workshop, but I’ve been a little distracted. Some of what I’ve been reading the last few days…

The other distraction has been Yahoo! Pipes. As part of my recent episode of blog housekeeping I wanted to see if I could filter some spam blogs out of my My Cosmos feed. But since I built the My Cosmos pipe, Yahoo! have added a whole bunch of new functionality, which I’m playing with right now…

Anyway, I will write something soon about Intranets ’07. I promise, just once get over these other distractions…

The Sort of Refreshed ChiefTech Blog

Ok. The blog is sort of back to normal with all the key links back in place. On the upside I have a slightly better tag cloud.

Along the way I’ve found out that the new’ish Blogger drag and drop layout tool is ok (and I mean ok, not great), and where services like Feedburner have bothered to create click and play Blogger widgets then getting the links to my RSS feeds back into the template was easy. I’ve also changed colours slightly for a bit of a change (well, it was easier than trying to change the colours on my new Technorati blog cloud). Actually getting the Technorati link count widget was the hardest part. I should be grateful that at least Blogger lets us fiddle with the HTML if needed (and thanks to Hoctro for the template tip).

But after all this it still doesn’t work correctly in IE6! 😦 I’m beginning to think that my earlier problems are really just related to my particular install of IE6 and associated security settings (if you’re using IE6 does it work for you?) however based on your feedback I’m not going to lose any sleep over it!