The part of the story that really resonated with me was when he relayed the debates the audience brought up regarding the definitions of KM and Enterprise 2.0. If you’ve been around KM for any length of time, you quickly realize that if you get 2 or more practitioners together, they won’t be able to agree on a definition of KM. It’s looking like Enterprise 2.0 may be worse.
I agree with Carl that organizations and workgroups should develop their own working definition of what Enterprise 2.0 really means. I believe that this definition will often center around what techniques and technologies are central to Enterprise 2.0. In fact, it’s often easier to characterize Web 2.0 by its technologies rather than a credo, definition of style, or even some cohesive intent. When you try to build a formal definition not centered on technology, you find your definition falls apart. This is the case when people try to characterize Web 2.0 as “social software” and are then forced to explain how AJAX would fit in that definition.
So, how should we define Enterprise 2.0 for the purposes of this blog? Not sure. I’m going to broadly say that I consider Enterprise 2.0 the movement of Web 2.0 technologies into business contexts. Given that broad definition, here are some of the qualities that I believe make a technology part of Web 2.0:
- Web based
- Rich user interactivity through one or more of:
- Focus is on empowering the user by:
- Connecting the user to data
- Connecting users to one another
- With other users
- Around data
- Collaborative filtering of data
- Building on the Internet as a platform – using its strengths and qualities rather than trying to apply traditional application development expectations. (Eric Schmidt’s “don’t fight the Internet”)
In general, I believe that Tim O’Reilly’s “What is Web 2.0?” article lays out nicely what Web 2.0 is all about. So, what I hope to explore is what happens when we take the Web 2.0 concepts and technologies into the business world. This will be fun and interesting because those concepts and technologies challenge traditional business models – notable examples include “perpetual beta” and exposing data openly to the masses.
Wow – see how easy it is to articulate your Enterprise 2.0 definition? ;-)