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The Game Has Changed

Kablink: A Fresh Take on Collaboration

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Discuss

The next area of the cycle is the Discuss phase. During this phase, the information found and consumed may not be fully understood by the consumer. Within Kablink, Discussion is a core feature that is associated with all other aspects in the cycle. You can have a discussion formed around each piece of information, whether it be a blog, a wiki article or a Microsoft Word document. You can even discuss the data captured in custom Web forms within your teams. When you use this feature in public forums that can be cataloged and searched, it facilitates the understanding that is required for information to be fully used (and reused) in your organization.

Kablink also supports real-time meetings so users can get immediate feedback on information contained within Kablink. Using Kablink Conferencing, users can identify meeting participants and start a meeting in real-time that can includes voice and data. Imagine needing an explanation of some document and having the owner of the document start up OpenOffice and share their OpenOffice session while you discuss the document’s content. Now that is the power of real-time. Kablink not only allows you to conduct meetings in real-time, but it also allows you to record and save those meetings so others can review the discussion and its outcome. These real-time features give you more power to conduct meetings the way you want, when you want.

Add Value

Add Value is the phase of the cycle where the information you discovered and discussed is now incorporated into your understanding of a topic. At this point in the process, the information is fully appreciated and its implications are understood. The collaboration events in this phase focus on your ability to add value to the initial publication event so others in your network can more quickly find and assimilate the same information. This involves adding public tags, reviewing content, adding ratings or annotating the publication so others can better evaluate its meaning from their perspective. This phase adds a new, contextual dimension to the original content that is extremely useful.

Kablink again provides tools that help users add their own unique value to knowledge assets. As mentioned previously, all information in Kablink can be discussed using comments and replies, but Kablink also supports other forms of value creation. Using Kablink, users can tag anything using community or personal tags. (Think del.icio.us) In addition, Kablink includes a ratings feature that lets users identify the most significant information in your organization and rate it, so others can quickly find and use the same information.

Extend

During the Extend phase, we apply the knowledge, wisdom and education that was distilled in the original document into scenarios that we own and are a part of. Knowledge originating from someone else has been transferred and used in totally new ways. The context of the original information might only remotely apply to these new scenarios, if at all. A great example of the extension of knowledge and process into new areas is the way principles of harmony and reuse in architecture were transferred to construction processes and, later, computer science.

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This example clearly demonstrates the Extend principle that allows knowledge designed for one audience and context to be discovered, discussed and transformed into another entirely different area of study.

We've already mentioned the way Kablink can be customized via Web forms, but Kablink also offers workflow capabilities that let your users capture data and process. This functionality allows the most important business rules or processes in your organization to be identified so efficiencies can be recognized and reused. Once pathways of knowledge transfer are uncovered and distilled into workflow processes, you can then extend those best practices to all the data types in Kablink. (See Figure 4.)

Open Collaboration

Underpinning all of these efforts and spearheading innovations in each area of the Knowledge Cycle is the Kablink Open Collaboration project. Sponsored by Novell, kablink.org was created to help advance the state of enterprise collaboration and team productivity in an open and communicative way. The Kablink community is providing tools that enable partners and developers from around the world to build applications that drive productivity and knowledge reuse throughout the enterprise. By joining the Kablink community, you can voice your opinions on team productivity. Whether you ultimately plan to use the open source version or the enterprise-class Novell product it feeds, Kablink actively seeks ideas and contributions from our community members to help drive the next generation in collaboration and team productivity. Join kablink.org today and help shape the future!



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  • Figure 1

    The Knowledge Cycle covers all stages of information creation and usage, from publishing and discovering content, to discussing and adding value, to extending information and ideas to other spheres.

  • Figure 2

    With Kablink, organizations can build custom Web forms to capture specific business data, such as restaurant inspection information.

  • Figure 3

    Kablink allows users to locate not only content related to a given topic, but people in the organization that can provide needed expertise.

  • Figure 4

    Kablink offers unique and powerful workflow capabilities to help organizations capture data and ensure consistent processes.



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