knowledge

The Problem with Patterns

Humans are natural pattern recognizers. Whether, as in prehistoric times, we were recognizing danger in a telltale rustle of the bushes or skimming a page of letters and numbers today, we use patterns to derive meaning without having to do a more detailed inspection.

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Most Important Post I Have Written This Year: What Does It Really Take To Know Your Customers?

This is long conversation and likely to be of interest to those of you who have experienced the limitations of knowledge as it is commonly understood. It may also be of interest to you if you glimpsed the radical difference between knowing and knowing about. If this is not you, then please go do something else.

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Talent Is Overrated

I’m not a talented writer. In fact, in many ways I’m pretty lousy. I’m a miserable typist—capable of  little better than hunt and peck—only have a vague idea about where to put punctuation and no matter how much I proofread, I always end up with typos.

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Why Innovation Is Rare: The Problem of Knowledge & The Curse of Expertise

I’d like to start this conversation by getting us mindful to a definition:

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The Shelf-Life of Marketing Data

The MIT Sloan Management Review recently asked Does Data Have a Shelf Life? According to the article:

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Organised Complexity

This is an image from the Blue Brain project, showing a network of 30 million connections between the 10,000 neurons that make up just one neocortical column. Our brains contain around ten million times this many neurons in total. Manuel Lima (a senior UX design lead at Microsoft Bing) uses this as illustration in this wonderful RSA lecture in which he explores the idea of network visualisation as a way of navigating the complexity of our modern world. The RSA have done another lovely Animate film of it below which is worth watching.

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The Dual Nature of Knowledge Work Productivity

When we think about knowledge work productivity, it is a very tricky subject. The reason it is tricky is because at one extreme we can routinize knowledge work — as when someone is calling to fill out a survey, or answer a customer service call. In a low value added knowledge work task, there is some variation, and the motivation and attitude of the employee is still a very big and important deal. 

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"Holding Knowledge Is Not as Valuable as Evaluating Knowledge"

"We are becoming symbiotic with our computer tools, growing into interconnected systems that remember less by knowing information than by knowing where the information can be found".

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That'll Never Happen: In a World Where Knowledge Has Been Democratized, How Do Planners Thrive?

Here's my talk from the Jay Chait Award Ceremony. Enjoy.

 

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The Economics of Cognitive Work: Some Initial Ideas

I have been long fascinated by the economics of cognitive work and I plan to explore this topic across a number of blog entries. I use the term cognitive work, not knowledge work, because knowledge work is a slippery slope. As soon as you know something, it stops being knowledge and soon becomes a fact. For example, when a person is scored for a credit card, that process of credit scoring used to be knowledge work, but because we have an algorithm for it, we don’t think of it as being “knowledgeable” anymore.

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