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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Knowledge Cartography

The underlying knowledge mapping metaphor is not new. Have seen several attempts at using this corporately. Now there are a number of packages, commercial and open that allow you to map your own knowledge spaces. I have tried a few. Works reasonably well if you have in your own head the layout of your knowledge is and if you religiously and often update your 'territory'. Relatively few people are that methodical.

Problematical if you try to get multiple people to use it as a means of sharing knowledge. You first have to convince the group of the lay of the land and the details of the context that is implied. Wikiness clearly works in environments where contribution is easy, even without any cartography.

Here is another look at the idea, Knowledge cartography:

" ... to extend the cartographic metaphor beyond visual analogy, and to expose it as a narrative model and tool to intervene in complex, heterogeneous, dynamic realities, just like those of human geography ... The map is thus not only a passive representation of reality but a tool for the production of meaning. Just like a text, the map makes selections on reality, distorts events, classifies and clarifies the world in order to selections better tell a particular aspect of a territory, an event, a space ... "

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