THE WELCH COMPANY
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S U M M A R Y
DIARY: July 18, 2000 12:51 PM Tuesday;
Mary Keeler comments on KM, commends Joe Ransdell's work.
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Peirce, Charles Knowledge Experience Time Accuracy
OHS/DKR Meeting at SRI 000518
Disallusioned by Technology Failed Promise of Automated Management
Giving Up Computers Do Not Improve Management Productivity
0806 - ..
0807 - Summary/Objective
080801 - Follow up ref SDS 54 0000, ref SDS 49 0000.
080803 - Received ref DRT 1 0001 from Mary responding to the copy of the
080804 - letter, ref DIP 5 0001, sent to Joe Ransdell on 000713. ref SDS 57
080805 - 0616 She commends Joe's work. ref DRT 1 1539
080807 - [On 000719 notified Joe about Mary's recommendation to work with
080808 - him. ref SDS 60 1540
080810 - [...sent copy of letter to Joe, to Mary, so she is up todate on
080811 - these efforts.
080813 - Mary explains she has not been able to respond to ref DIP 4 0001 on
080814 - 000624, ref SDS 54 1534, due to family concerns, as noted in my letter
080815 - to Joe on 000713. ref DIP 5 1596 She reports 5 new puppies are
080816 - keeping her busy. So she has her hands full.
080818 - Mary notes one reason she has not had time is that an adequate
080819 - response would take time to sort out the issues and the confusions of
080820 - current thinking in that realm of work. ref DRT 1 2368
080822 - I have been working for years with a group that might interest you:
080823 - the International Conceptual Structures community. They hold
080824 - conferences every year (see this year's announcement for the one
080825 - coming up in August, below). They have been developing many
080826 - successful practical applications, based on Peirce's existential
080827 - graphs and his pragmatism, but still do not grasp the fundamental
080828 - issues adequately (I believe). ref DRT 1 0360
080830 - So, far I have not seen anything from any source that indicates an
080831 - understanding of "knowledge" or KM that might improve present
080832 - practice, per analysis on 000106. ref SDS 10 1025 More recently on
080833 - 000425 this seems to indicate that KM is a secret of SDS.
080834 - ref SDS 28 0480
080836 - Need an example of one or two issues, relative to POIMS
080837 - explanation of Knowledge Management dilemma. ref OF 1 0561
080839 - One might at least address the different perspectives between
080840 - philosophy and cognitive science set out in my letter on 000624.
080841 - ref DIP 4 1450
080843 - The primary problem for AI, KR, and KM (as I see it) is that they do
080844 - not benefit from crucial philosophical understanding of the problems
080845 - they address, and struggle along "re-creating the wheel" (in very
080846 - primitive form). Philosophers are certainly partly to blame for this,
080847 - but it seems to be a modern fashion to assume that we can start from
080848 - sratch on everything and hope to get somewhere (arrogant, to say the
080849 - least). ref DRT 1 5456
080851 - Need an example to illustrate her point.
080852 - ..
080853 - Another aspect of the challenge moving theory to practical
080854 - application, according to Landauer, is that theory often evolves
080855 - from using new technology in ways that were not expected or
080856 - intended when the technology was created. In other words, people
080857 - need experience doing things differently for awhile in order for
080858 - the mind to identify a new path, see the record on 950710
080859 - reviewing Tom's book "The Trouble with Computers." ref SDS 3 8303
080861 - SDS may provide such an opportunity because it enables a starkly
080862 - different set of procedures from traditional practice, as Joe
080863 - discusses in his letter yesterday. ref SDS 59 3825
080865 - Mary thinks Peirce's philosophy can help with basic understanding --
080866 - before we launch into practical experiments that are not well
080867 - conceived. Of course, we can try to continue to learn by trial and
080868 - error but, surely, we can do better. ref DRT 1 3500
080869 - ..
080870 - Mary sounds a bit discouraged, possibly having tried to
080871 - support efforts that apply her work, and meeting resistance, or
080872 - ignorance and lack of imagination, similar to problem of people
080873 - having given up trying to use technology to support daily
080874 - management, discussed with Morris on 000706. ref SDS 56 1886
080876 - On 000716 Joe Ransdell indicated the objective of the Welch work
080877 - with SDS, POIMS and Communication Metrics, possibly more broadly,
080878 - a general theory of Knowledge Management, has been tried as far
080879 - back as the 17th century, without success. ref SDS 0 0001 He calls
080880 - it an ambitious undertaking. ref SDS 58 7838
080882 - The basic problem is lack of experience by technologists with a
080883 - design that enables them to work differently long enough to
080884 - understand and accept that the different process and form of tool,
080885 - yields consistently better results than traditional tools and
080886 - practice. Without such experience, philosophical explanations,
080887 - however, well formed and researched, seem baseless and irrelevant.
080888 - As stated above, the lucky break of key forces coming together in
080889 - 1985 created SDS (reported 950204, ref SDS 2 4365), which, in
080890 - turn, has yielded experience that forced awareness of patterns
080891 - that required theoretical explanation. Thus, per Landauer,
080892 - technology led theory. ref SDS 0 3721
080894 - Now we are at the stage where theorists and other experts need to
080895 - take a stronger role. Hopefully prior disappointments will not
080896 - completely bar the way. But, if so, it supports Landauer's
080897 - explanation of why progress is so sloooooooooow. One possible aid
080898 - in moving forward, is that the experience that showed one person
080899 - the possibility of a stronger knowledge capability, is now
080900 - available for many people to experience in part. Theorists are
080901 - helpful in drawing attention to this evidence, that is otherwise,
080902 - like the fabled cricket, having too fun and making too much money
080903 - to worry about what will happen when sunshine profits fade.