440 Davis Court #1602
San Francisco, CA 94111-2496
415 781 5700

Date: Fri, 08 Jun 2001 12:52:22 -0700

03 00050 61 01060802

Mr. Pat Lincoln
Computer Science Laboratory
SRI International
333 Ravenswood Avenue
Menlo Park, CA 94025

Subject:   SRI and Welch
Government Inquiry about SDS

Dear Pat,

Received today another inquiry about SDS from someone who came across SDS records on the Internet and recognized value that meets felt need.

In this case, inquiry comes from the Defense Department, and so sounds like the kind of thing we discussed at dinner the other day.

Notice the contact, Stuart Harrow, has been trying to do SDS using traditional manual methods. This may indicate demand for improving earnings by adding "intelligence" to management. The ability of SDS to improve conventional practice, translates into a big market, once people catch on that "knowledge" is a stronger resource than "information, and SDS is the only technology that can grow more knowledge, as Stuart sets out in his letter today. The only way to enable people to catch on is to continue using SDS to save time and money day-to-day, and put that record on the Internet, so people can compare their record, with results using SDS, i.e., it sells itself.

I called and talked to Stuart at the number he provided in his letter. He was very considerate in volunteering to call me back, so I took him up on the offer.

Stuart called back and said he liked the fact there is no advertising on welchco, just an explanation of what SDS does, and a history of work product, showing ability to perform. He advised his agency has investigated solutions from Microsoft, IBM and others, but nobody has work product that shows ability to perform. He asked if SDS is a Windows program? I explained it is a DOS program. He expressed some amazement, and further noted that DCMA agency uses a number of DOS programs.

Stuart's agency manages major procurements by the Army, Air Force and the Navy. They have 80 offices around the world. He indicated they have a number of projects that are in difficulty, and noted that Communication Metrics is designed to solve management problems. He plans to visit with Max Blodgett on Monday, who was the lead sponsor of SDS at USACE, and discuss Max's memo. and then discuss SDS with his team. He will call back in a few weeks on progress.

Whether we hear from Stuart again, or not, this seems like the kind of setting where Welch and SRI can pursue the research we want to do for advancing KM in management, science, education, national security and other areas where stronger "intelligence" capability is vital, by performing work that saves money for customers, which in turn pays for the research.

A partnership between Welch and SRI can be formed to realize these goals.

Welch provides SDS, Communication Metrics, POIMS, the ability to perform KM, and a record showing the ability to perform. Welch gets paid for Com Metrics support, and providing SDS to customers like DCMA. We need to think through the revenue stream on SDS, e.g., do people buy the program, do they lease it, and pay for annual updates, do they pay for maintenance of the record, etc.

SRI provides marketing contacts, business management, and research support that leverages the SDS record of performance through publication of papers, studies, and presentations at professional conferences. SRI will generate revenue from providing research and support services. A collateral benefit will be accomplishing SRI's mission to advance the nation and civilization, as called out in POIMS.

For example, Stuart asked about applying SDS across DCMA, and noted it would be a big job. I noted that building a nuclear carrier (ship) is another big job, but his people do it. Deployment requires research and planning for training, technology, developing work practices and procedures, and cultural issues, as we have seen lately. SRI can provide these services to compliment Welch contributions.

What I am proposing is that if Stuart can call me out of the blue from having read about SDS, other contacts you have in government and industry are equally capable of grasping the opportunity to solve their problems using SDS. This presents business opportunity that can be jointly developed and exploited. As you pointed out, if this agency uses SDS, then a lot of contractors will be exposed to a stronger KM solution for problems they are encountering using IT. This will expose a lot of employees to the prospect of strengthening basic cognitive capacity. A lot of them will want their children to learn SDS because it improves literacy (Doug's C activity). This grows the market, and it improves the nation and civilization.

There could be an opportunity to advance goals for OHS/DKR, and provide a crucible to eventually test XML, Topic Maps and other ideas, while, and by, doing something productive that pays the bills. That is how SDS evolved. Every time we do a contract, we grow the technology. I am very anxious to continue that growth, and see an unlimited horizon for evolutionary advance that Doug wants, because the SDS design opens an entirely new window of innovation.

If you agree, please let me know the steps to get going.




Rod Welch

Copy to:

  1. Jones, Morris E.,
  2. Engelbart, Douglas C.,