Gurteen Knowledge-Letter: Issue 110 - August 2009


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Gurteen Knowledge-Letter: Issue 110 - August 2009


  1 Introduction to the August 2009 Knowledge Letter
  2 My Australia/New Zealand Trip
  3 KM Singapore 2009
  4 Check out Ellen Langer's new book Counterclockwise
  5 Zeldin I LOVE the stuff you do!
  6 The iPhone: always on and always on you - part of you
  7 Stephen Billing on Joint Inquiry
  8 It does not matter if no one reads your blog!
  9 HMRC Purpose, Vision and Way
10 [E100 Alert] Briefing for the Millennium Bretton Woods
11 KM Event Highlights
12 Subscribing and Unsubscribing
13 The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

Introduction to the August 2009 Knowledge Letter    (top | next | prev)

I cannot believe that my website is 10 years old this month. The oldest page on my website is dated 07/08/1999 but the site is a few months older than that but I have nominated that date as the birthday for the site.

You can get a feel for what he site looked like in the past from the Wayback Machine. In some ways, it has not changed a lot, its still as ugly as ever but I have always put my effort into the content and not in beautifying it - a trade off given I am just one guy.

Looking back at things I guess the biggest change is its size - its now over 7,000 pages and when I started out there were no such things as widgets - now they abound on my site ... not always a good thing as they slow down page loading times but they add so much useful content and functionality - the site would not be the same without them.

I hope it still serves its purpose to share all the things that are going in the broad "world of knowledge" that interest me and I hope in turn interest you!

My Australia/New Zealand Trip    (top | next | prev)

My 3 week trip to Australia and New Zealand (12 Sept - 02 Oct) is shaping up nicely and I will be sending out an email to my community members in the region soon to inform you of the full details of my itinerary. But you can see the current state of play here.

I am looking forward to meeting a lot of old friends and many new people. Get in touch if you would like to meet up.

KM Singapore 2009    (top | next | prev)

I had a great time at KM Singapore organised by the Singapore iKMS Society a week or so ago. A big thanks to everyone who organised the event and helped make my participation go so smoothly.

You will find photos here, tweets here and a short blog post from Madan Rao here.

Check out Ellen Langer's new book Counterclockwise    (top | next | prev)

Back in my third newsletter in August 2000 (omg 9 years ago) I did a short book review of The Power of Mindful Learning by Ellen Langer, a social psychologist at Harvard University. This is a very powerful book and had a huge influence on me at the time and my work with my Knowledge Cafes.

Ellen has recently published another book Counterclockwise. I have yet to read it but it looks equally as powerful.

She asks the question "If we could turn back the clock psychologically, could we also turn it back physically?" and answers that by opening our minds to what’s possible, instead of clinging to accepted notions about what’s not, can lead to better health at any age. The magic lies in being aware of the ways we mindlessly react to cultural cues.

This sounds very "new-agey" but Ellen's conclusions is based on thorough scientific research. The first chapter is available to read on-line.

What interests me here is that if our mindless reaction to cultural cues can exert such a strong influence on our health and well being what is the impact on our creativity and ability to learn and achieve things.

Zeldin I LOVE the stuff you do!    (top | next | prev)

Theodore Zeldin is most interested in conversations when we "discover what it is like to be somebody else, and what other people feel".

Watch this recent video interview with him where is celebrates his 76th birthday by inviting members of the public to a central London park to talk to strangers - a delight!

The iPhone: always on and always on you - part of you    (top | next | prev)

A few weeks back I brought a new 3GS iPhone. Up until then I had an old Nokia handset. I had been putting off the purchase for a long time. I was happy with my dumb phone and did not see the real need for anything more. I knew at the back of my mind I was wrong but I did not realise how wrong!

Those of you with an iPhone will be chuckling by now as you KNOW just how wrong I was!

The iPhone is NOT a phone - it is a personal information, navigation, communication and connection device. It is THE most powerful Social Tool you can imagine. And like all Social Tools you have no idea what they can really do for you until you start to play with them.

I think what amazes me about the iPhone the most - is its potential. The device I have is impressive but I feel there is huge room for improvement.

Out of the box I get the following and more:
  • phone/sms
  • contacts database
  • still camera
  • video camera
  • voice recorder
  • all my music
  • most of my photos
  • a very functional browser
  • a storage device
And these are just some of the Apps I have downloaded so far (and I have yet to pay for an App):
  • Skype
  • Facebook
  • Twitteriffic and TweetDeck
  • Yahoo Messenger
  • Wikipedia
  • Dopplr
  • Google Maps
  • Google Earth
  • Weather (Guide)
  • Time Zone Guide
  • Currency (Convertor)
  • Several news feeds: Telegraph, Sky News, ITN News, NPR News
But it is the geolocation functions enabled by the iPhone's inbuilt GPS that seem to me to have the most promise:
  • Know where I am e.g. Google Maps
  • Let others know where I am e.g. Google Latitude and Plazer
  • Know where others are - both friends and like-minded people e.g. Brighkite and Whoshere
  • Know what is around me e.g. Nearest, AroundMe and WCFinder
  • Get directions to places e.g. TomTom
And then I have been playing with two apps
  • PicPosterous that allows me to take photos and automatically uploaded them to the web including Flickr, Facebook and Twitter
  • 12cast that allows me to take 12 second video clips and automatically upload them to the web as a sort of micro-video blog - a video version of Twitter
So a whole new world in the making :-)

If you haven't woken up to the iPhone yet - then go out and get one tomorrow! Its only a matter of time before everyone has an iPhone or smart phone equivalent and we are all connected in real-time. The thing about the iPhone is that it is "always on" and "always on you". It becomes "part of you".

I think this technology will completely transform the way we interact with the world. And I can only just begin to imagine the implications of that!

Stephen Billing on Joint Inquiry    (top | next | prev)

This short video explains joint enquiry as a key way that as a change leader you can engage with your people when trying to generate change in your organisation.

This is a big part of what my Knowledge Cafe's about. It also reminds me so much of Alfie Kohns comment:
Many of the familiar principles of Quality management amount to an elaboration of this simple truth: an innovative, healthy organization requires that we work with people rather than do things to them.
Credit: Alfie Kohn
This is the key ... "We have to stop trying to change people and work with them!".

Side note: I have referred to Steve Billing's work several times over recent months. I have never met him but that is set to change when I have dinner with him during my upcoming trip to Australia and New Zealand. I look forward to some great conversation.

It does not matter if no one reads your blog!    (top | next | prev)

I have long advocated that blogging is a thinking tool and not a publishing tool. And so many non-bloggers have looked at me as if I was crazy. I will say it again the only way you get to REALLY understand social tools is to play with them. Things then emerge that were not apparent by looking at them or reading about them.

If you don't blog and still don't quite get it - take a look at what Seth Godin has to say about blogs for example it does not matter if no one reads your blog! short video clip with Tom Peters. He is SPOT ON!

HMRC Purpose, Vision and Way    (top | next | prev)

A month or two ago I had a meeting at HMRC - the UK's HM Revenue & Customs. While waiting in the lobby I spied their mission statement and was quite impressed. Rather than say "We collect taxes." LOL It said this:

HMRC Purpose
  • We make sure that the money is available to fund the UK's public services.

  • We also help families and individuals with targeted financial support.
I took a photo of the mission statement.

An afternoon in London

A clean, crsip purpose - I like it!

E100 Alert Briefing for the Millennium Bretton Woods    (top | next | prev)

I thought you would be interested in the latest [E100 Alert] Briefing for the Millennium Bretton Woods - (August 2009) from Debra Amidon. She concludes thus:

With the G8 expanded to the G20, the discussion of a new world order is underway. French President Nicolas Sarkozy and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown called for a "New Bretton Woods" agreement in October 2008. Jean Dermine, INSEAD Professor of Banking and Finance called for a new international financial order. The World Bank has issued its World Knowledge Development Reports. The UN released major reports on Knowledge Societies.

My fear is not that this event will not happen; it WILL. I worry that the visionaries who have pushed the frontiers of financial measurement to include the variables of intangible wealth and intellectual capital may not have a prominent seat at the table.  

  What can WE do - collectively - to help shape the agenda?
Credit: Debra Amidon

Any thoughts?

KM Event Highlights    (top | next | prev)

This section highlights some of the major KM events taking place around the world in the coming months and ones in which I am actively involved. You will find a full list on my website where you can also subscribe to both regional e-mail alerts and RSS feeds which will keep you informed of new and upcoming events.

10th European Conference on Knowledge Management
03 - 04 Sep 2009, Vicenza, Italy
I have attended this conference now for several years and will be there running a knowledge cafe again this year!

Implementing a Knowledge Cafe
09 Sep 2009, London, United Kingdom
I am looking forward to facilitating this Masterclass in September. This must be my third with the Ark Group in London.

KM Brasil 2009
16 - 18 Sep 2009, Salvador, Brazil

The Gurteen Knowledge Café Workshop
22 Sep 2009, Christchurch, New Zealand
I will be running this workshop in Christchurch, New Zealand for the second year.

The Gurteen Knowledge Café Workshop
24 Sep 2009, Wellington, New Zealand
I will be running this workshop in Wellington, New Zealand for the second year.

International Conference on Knowledge Economy (ICKE2009)
20 - 22 Oct 2009, Sandton, Johannesburg, South Africa
I will be speaking at this conference in Sandton, Johannesburg and spending some additonal time in South Africa while there including Cape Town.

KM LatinAmerica 2009
26 - 30 Oct 2009, Buenos Aires, Argentina

KM India 2009
28 - 30 Oct 2009, Chennai, India
I will be speaking at this conference. It will be my first trip to India.

KMWorld & Intranets 2009
17 - 19 Nov 2009, San Jose, United States

KM Asia 2009
24 - 26 Nov 2009, Singapore City, Singapore
I will be giving a keynote talk and running a workshop and a reverse brainstorming cafe at KM Asia this year.

Subscribing and Unsubscribing    (top | next | prev)

You may subscribe to this newsletter on my website. Or if you no longer wish to receive this newsletter or if you wish to modify your e-mail address or make other changes to your membership profile then please go to this page on my website.

The Gurteen Knowledge Letter    (top | next | prev)

The Gurteen Knowledge-Letter is a free monthly e-mail based KM newsletter for Knowledge Workers. Its purpose is to help you better manage your knowledge and to stimulate thought and interest in such subjects as Knowledge Management, Learning, Creativity and the effective use of Internet technology. Archive copies are held on-line where you can register to receive the newsletter.

It is sponsored by the Knowledge Management Forum of the Henley Business School, Oxfordshire, England.

You may copy, reprint or forward all or part of this newsletter to friends, colleagues or customers, so long as any use is not for resale or profit and I am attributed. And if you have any queries please contact me.

Gurteen Knowledge
Fleet, United Kingdom

If you are interested in Knowledge Management, the Knowledge Café or the role of conversation in organizational life then you my be interested in this online book I am writing on Conversational Leadership
David Gurteen

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