Business & Finance
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8/15/2003
03:40 PM
Chris Murphy
Chris Murphy
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Editor's Note: Managing Info, If Not Power Grids

Perhaps a few of you are like me in wanting to pretend you're not a tech slave. In a pinch, we can get along just fine without our electronic tools, right? Me, I keep my notes in a Mead spiral that's identical to the notebook I carried to eighth grade. Surely I can't be technology–dependent.

Then the power goes out. The outage doesn't hit my office, it doesn't even hit my time zone, and I'm still out of business. Without E–mail and a secure network to collaborate with my colleagues in seven cities around the country, I'm isolated and unproductive. E–mail isn't just how we send messages, it's how we think. It's a wild brainstorming session and a quiet place to contemplate all at the same time. Without it, ideas stagnate.

Fortunately, other people at our company had a much more realistic view of our technology dependence than I, so my idleness didn't last long. For more about how people like you kept businesses moving last week, see our article on page 18.

There's further evidence in our article on page 34 of the dependence we put on our networks—technical and social—to help us create ideas. It's about knowledge management. Now that's a term sure to bring groans to some people's lips. They've heard grand promises and watched them fall short in reality. But the article, by senior editor Tony Kontzer, explores why companies still pursue knowledge management's goals of enabling faster, smarter decisions, and the tools they're using to get the promises closer to reality this time, leveraging more flexible search and collaboration technologies.

After all, it's not just what you know. It's who you can tell it to.

Chris Murphy
Executive Editor
cjmurphy@cmp.com

Stephanie Stahl is on vacation and will return next week.


To discuss this column with other readers, please visit the Talk Shop.

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