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

September 26, 2000

04 00067 61 00092601

Mr. Henry van Eykan
Bootstrap Institute
6505 Kaiser Drive
Fremont, CA 94555

Subject:   Educating KM Engineers and Customers

Dear Henry,

Responding to your letter today, I join Jack and the whole team in wishing you good health.

Your favorable comments on SDS are encouraging for keeping after the dream of better knowledge tools, which necessarily requires a balance between personal and organizational aspects of our lives. That is the core idea of POIMS.

We want to help others, and advance larger objectives, as a by-product of accomplishing the work we do day-to-day for ourselves, and we want to draw on the work of others, as needed, to broaden our own horizons.

Accounting provides a double entry model for verifying accuracy. Recall that Professor Mary Keeler explained to the team at SRI on May 18, 2000 that a key aspect of knowledge is accuracy. So, we need a way to get after it.

SDS uses the process of writing up the record and creating alignment as a double entry process for verifying the accuracy of impressions from conversation and performing tasks. Feedback, using the legal practice of notice, is another part of checking alignment so that adjustments can be made before people are delayed or injured through mistake, i.e., lack of alignment. This works because most actions are preceded by communication. If communication is not aligned with requirements, commitments and objectives, then action that occurs hours, days, months or years later will not be aligned either. So aligning communication offers a big chance to improve the work, as Doug calls out.

Discipline is reduced by SDS.

Without SDS, it takes enormous discipline to align the record. People say there is not enough time, so it doesn't get done. With SDS it is fun, fast and easy.

The Boy Scout knapsack illustrates how technology can give diligence and discipline a boost, from a letter on August 16, 1999.

So, SDS doesn't take extra discipline, it takes less, because filling out the record is not an extra step we struggle to fit in after we do the work. It is the work. That's the secret of getting more done in less time, based on the rule that the long way around is the short way there.

Just musing.



Rod Welch