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

[Submitted via email]

May 23, 1996                                            03 00050 96052301

Mr. David S. Vannier
Director of Mobile Architecture
Mobile & Handheld Products Group
Intel Corporation
2200 Mission College Blvd; Mail Stop SC9-28
Santa Clara, CA  95052 8119

Subject:  Proposal for Intel to study SDS

Ref:   a. Dave's Email to Rod May 21, 1996
          b. Rod's Email to Dave May 20, 1996
          c. Rod's Email to Dave May 9, 1996
          d. Dave's Email to Rod May 9, 1996
          e. Welch proposal Apr 23, 1996

Dear Dave,
Thanks very much for considering my ideas. Perhaps after trying initiatives underway in this area, the Welch approach can be reconsidered. As you point out in your April 1991 Byte interview, "automated management" is complex; and, so, is hard to create, and harder yet to explain because it entails new elements that people have not yet experienced.

The proposal is aimed at positioning Intel to gain this experience at a time when things are going relatively well, i.e., you can afford to investigate and experiment. This challenge is compounded by the nominally proper concern that a text solution is counterintuitive. As well, however, when things are going well, it is hard to get interest in an opportunity that is "dressed in coveralls and looks like work." Reading the New World Order ... paper and thinking about the need for written analysis, entailed by the Welch proposal, seems antithetical to the busy executive anxious to get things done. I know that these conditions make it hard to raise the emotional and political capital needed to evaluate claims of better management productivity and earnings. Accordingly, your willingness to consider my proposal is deeply appreciated.

Incidentally, Dr. Thomas K. Landauer, who did research at Bell Labs on applying technology to improve cognition, and wrote a book on his findings, released last year called "The Trouble with Computers," was looking forward to meeting you at Asilomar to discuss his ideas. He was invited to make a presentation at Asilomar, but the PMI committee ultimately decided not to pay honorariums and so he will not be at the event. His expertise is in anthropology, psychology and cognitive science, specifically how humans learn and grow their knowledge.

Now a professor at the University of Colorado, Dr. Landauer's paper on "Plato's Problem" seems to hold significant promise for making technology a more useful aid for human cognition, an essential predicate to improving the "management" role. It presents a vector matrix model of induction, called "Latent Semantic Analysis" (LSA). I can submit the paper via email; and, you can contact Dr. Landauer directly at 303 492 2875; internet:

I am enclosing his proposed outline for Asilomar and his credentials, including papers and honors, for information. I have not met Dr. Landauer, but his work is prescient and compelling.

With regard to using SDS at Asilomar to illustrate progress on your objective in the 1991 Byte interview to combine time and information management, probably this is not a good time. I am of course willing to support your effort to show how an "automated notebook" supports "automated management." Marcy and I discussed having another presenter pile up a bunch of papers to illustrate the problem facing executives of too much paperwork; and, then pushing it all onto the floor and placing your computer in the center of the desk to show how all of that paper, plus all of the thoughts, analysis, calls, email and discussions are linked into a web of instantaneous knowledge organized for action. As you and I talked about the other day, you could then provide a "glimpse into the future" of a better partnership between leadership and technology with graphics and the internet.

My only concern is that you should get a chance to feel comfortable about POIMS criteria and the science of Communication Metrics; and, my sense is from your email that the timing isn't good for this objective. These ideas have been emerging over the past 15 years. Another year or so for cultural awareness to take root may be needed. Hopefully, this year we can get some terminology on people's minds as we all wrestle with the challenges of a new millineum.

Again, thanks very much for considering the New World Order ideas. It's been a great pleasure and honor to work with you and the Intel team.



Rod Welch

copy to: Bill DeHart