Standards, processes, and marketplaces for e-content
are essential, but they will be incomplete without advances in public
and private infrastructures for exchanging and deploying content.
Capabilities and Cultures for
The developments in Internet2 and the so-called Semantic
Web are creating the environment conducive to e-knowledge
exchange. Equally important, organizations have been developing
their internal infrastructures, processes, capabilities and cultures
when creating new experiences in learning and knowledge application.
While significant progress has been made over the past decade, truly
transformative changes will occur over the next five to ten years.
These infrastructures, processes, capabilities and cultures cover
a wide range of technologies.
Most colleges and universities, corporations, professional
societies and associations, and government agencies have been enhancing
their infrastructure to deal with e-knowledge capabilities. All
are extensively deploying enterprise portals, ERP, Web services,
and communities of practice, distinctively tailored to the needs
of learners, members, customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders.
The CRM, learning management systems (LMS), course management systems
(CMS), and learning content management systems (LCMS) applications
vary substantially from sector to sector. Corporate enterprises,
government agencies, and consultancies are typically more advanced
in knowledge management applications using these infrastructures.
The dimensions and textures of organizational infrastructure
in higher education were demonstrated at EDUCAUSE 2001 and reiterated
at EDUCAUSE 2002. Carl Jacobsen of the University of Delaware, Carl
Berger from the University of Michigan, and Robert Kvavik of the
University of Minnesota described how the combination of portalization,
Web-based interactivity, ERP systems, learning management system
platforms, networks, communities of practice, and expert service
providers were creating flexible platforms for creating new learning
and knowledge deployment experiences. Berger described the next
killer application for higher educationthe capacity to create
a new breed of powerful, personalized, learning and professional
development experiences far exceeding the traditional capabilities
of colleges and universities.
We are on the threshold of these infrastructure capabilities
today. The developments in standards and marketplaces for e-knowledge
will combine with these infrastructure capabilities to supercharge
a new wave of best practices and new business models and strategies
Hardware and Networking Infrastructures.
The Internet and World Wide Web are developing into substantially
more robust platforms to support learning and knowledge management.
Internet2 and other initiatives are expanding the Internets
bandwidth potential. Moreover, the focus is shifting from hard
to soft infrastructure issues. Processes, standards,
and interoperability are becoming major issues. The Semantic Web
is about the richness of exchange of semantics in data structures,
especially those associated with domains of practice. That is, electronic
agents resident on the Internet will be able to interpret metadata
to understand the content and context of the packets the Internet
is transporting. These developments are an essential predicate to
the development of dependable, seamless
and cost-effective infrastructures for the