Ability to Multi-task Knowledge Streams.
Todays knowledge navigators quickly fill their personal knowledge-processing
bandwidths. Multi-tasking is limited severely by the state of todays
The combination of high amenity interfaces, ambient
resources, agents, and peer- reviewed knowledge marketplaces will
dramatically reduce the time required for knowledge search and synthesis.
Knowledge navigators will be able to draw upon more streams of knowledge
at one time without overwhelming their limited attention capacity.
Amenity of the Knowledge Experience.
Amenity has been achieved by traditional means of acquiring and
sharing knowledge conversation, books, newspapers, other
print media, television, video, and the like. These media usually
fit seamlessly into our lives. On the other hand, todays experience
of engaging digital knowledge is still uncomfortable and distinct
from ones other activities.
In our future, engagement with digital knowledge will
acquire amenity. The physical interfaces, means of interacting,
languages, and other aspects of the knowledge experience will be
familiar and easy. In some cases they be peripheral, indistinguishable,
even involuntary. For knowledge denizens buying into accelerated
knowledge sharing, pervasive interactivity and knowledge engagement
will be as much a part of life as breathing.
The Challenge of Accommodating
Different Knowledge Experiences
As we enter this brave new world of quantum leaps
in the velocity and acceleration of knowledge assimilation, a variety
of challenges will emerge.
The greatest will be the divide between what Marc
Prensky labels digital natives (net or digital generation
people), who are comfortable with using digital tools to accelerate
ways of experiencing knowledge, and digital immigrants
(some generation X people and most Baby Boomers), who are programmed
to experience knowledge in slow, sequential, and long-shelf-life
ways. As digital natives embrace the new ways of experiencing knowledge,
think of the existing gaps that will become chasms in our organizationsbetween
managers and front-line workers, between faculty and learners, between
boards of directors and staffs.
To a greater extent than we previously thought, people
can acquire new ways of thinking and experiencing knowledge. But
it is hard work. The easy part of the e-knowledge revolution will
be developing the infrastructures, tools, processes, and competencies
for e-knowledge use among the digerati. The harder
task will be for organizations to enable and incentivize both digital
natives and digital immigrants to embrace new ways of experiencing
New Experiences Shape New Behaviors,
Practices, and Social Groupings
How will new ways of experiencing knowledge change
the behavior and social patterns of knowledge-seeking individuals
and enterprises in the Knowledge Age? And how could that lead to
new social and economic structures and processes based on knowledge?
The following practices of people on the leading edge of the Knowledge
Age may yield some clues.
Swarming. Preteens in Finland, young
professional in Korea, and Senate staffers in Washington D.C. all
have one thing in common: they swarm. Swarming is the behavior pattern
of groups of amorphous groups of cell phone users who communicate
to one another about where the best party is, what movie they all
want to see, or which of several meetings they need to attend, then
swarm together in response to the information.