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Phil's taking the mic at CIL 2009

I just looked at my clock here at the office. It's just after 11:30 a.m., which means Phil's presentation at CIL 2009 is now underway. He's speaking at the Library Automation Highlights session, and will share features of Presto, how our customers are using it, and some best practices for implementing it.

Phil and our sales team are stationed at booth 1018 to demo Presto and Genie 3.3, and of course meet customers, which we always enjoy doing.

The team is also working on bringing back pictures from the show, and maybe even an interview or two with some attendees. We'll have it all here on the blog soon!

Productivity is power

In my previous posts for How to Cost Justify Your Social Knowledge Network Needs, I've explained how social knowledge management technologies can improve productivity.

But what can increased productivity do for you? Well for one thing, the methods to achieve improved organizational productivity -- such as improved access to relevant information and improved collaboration -- can significantly help mitigate risk and let organizations make better business decisions. But that's just scratching the surface. Let's dive deeper in our next installment of our series.

Improved organizational productivity can lead to lower costs across an organization in functions involving:
  • Service desks;
  • Training;
  • Expertise management (improved knowledge retention when staff retire or are laid off, knowledge flow when new practices/insights are shared, knowledge de-centralization);
  • Collaboration (shorter design times, fewer mistakes, improvement in quality); and
  • Logistics
Again, technology solutions that focus on easing the lifecycle of information help facilitate knowledge capture and reuse, and thus drive these improvements in organizational efficiency.

Specifically, it is through the correct categorization, cataloging, and organizing of information into its appropriate taxonomies that the capture of knowledge becomes most effective. Providing effective means to search for and browse through information leads to better knowledge reuse.

Going back to our previous example, average software Year 1 expenditures were around $60K, with average annual subscription fees of $30K. Again, additional factors, such as hardware costs, content subscription fees, and IT admin costs have not been factored in this analysis.

The costs of a fully loaded employee are assumed to be $100k, and the average time wasted per employee on ineffective information search is 30 percent. Table 1 below illustrates the reduction in productivity as a calculated cost and the resulting net cost savings from a RIF. (Click the image to enlarge.)

Table 2 illustrates the ROI, timing of the return, and total cost savings from implementing a social knowledge management solution.

Again, in the above analysis, the additional costs associated with hardware, content subscriptions, IT overhead, etc. are not taken into consideration. However a reasonable assessment of these typical costs would still return a significant cost savings. A deeper analysis on a case-by-case basis would need to be conducted to properly assess the ROI for any particular situation. I'm happy to help you delve further.

SKN Value Prop: Organizational productivity increases by creating knowledge communities focused on a particular problem.

Why social knowledge networks are doomed to succeed

According to a Gartner Hype Cycle report, “KM is something you do, not something you buy.” While this is very true, it misses a key issue surrounding the emergence of social media as a powerful KM enabler.

In its infancy, KM implementations involved software which would capture knowledge and then provide data access. However, if you did not accompany the implementation with a Dilbert-like missive from the boss saying, "If you don’t add something to the KM system every day, you're fired," then the KM system was DOOMED to failure.

Why was this the case? Because sharing knowledge and playing nice with colleagues is not always natural for many humans, and only the threat of ex-communication from the hive would cause people to behave as you would like. In short, many people have had a "what's in it for me" approach, and thus many traditional KM systems have failed.

However, social knowledge networks are now DOOMED to succeed for exactly the same reasons that tradition KM systems were doomed to fail. In a social knowledge network, the construct and mechanism for sharing is social media. The Internet has trained and rewarded millions of users on the joy of sharing. We are now living in a culture of sharing. (Sometimes as we can all see on YouTube, for instance, a bit too much sharing.)

Book reviews, hotel reviews, how to videos, my opinion, my blog, my video, my tags, etc. A social knowledge network uses these social media mechanisms to capture knowledge and enrich the KM system.

And the best part is that if humans choose not play, we don’t care! We only need a small fraction of the community to be active sharers, and the system works great. A social knowledge network succeeds because it does not need to change people's behaviors and it does not need everyone to share.

So, as we move out of the past and into the new social reality, I think we can all agree that KM is important. It is the key driver in the information economy that we all live in. KM is now DOOMED to succeed, if implemented with care and thought, using social tools to capture knowledge and share it.

Buttoning things up for CIL 2009

This year's Computers in Libraries conference is just around the corner, and we're coming to the final stages of our preparation. For those who might be unfamiliar with the show, CIL is the largest technology conference and exhibition for librarians and information managers in North America.

This year's theme is "Creating Tomorrow: Spreading Ideas and Learning," and will focus on new technologies and online initiatives for enhancing user-friendly digital information flows. You can learn more about it on the show's Web site.

There will be plenty of exciting demos, presentations, and more for attendees to get the inside track into what's on the horizon in library information technology. Look for Inmagic at booth 1018, where we'll be demoing our latest releases, Presto and Genie 3.3 (now part of DB/Text Library Suite). We'll also be meeting customers and answering questions.

But the star of our exhibition will be Phil Green, who will be speaking at the Library Automation Highlights session on Tuesday, March 31 at 11:30 a.m. He'll be sharing features of Presto, how our customers are using it in their various types of libraries and organizations, and some best implementation practices.

We have a lot of useful, meaningful info in the hopper, and are looking forward to sharing it at CIL. If you haven't signed up for the show yet, there's still room to register online. It'll be at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in Arlington, Va., from March 30 to April 1.

Lose the man, not the manpower

Even under normal circumstances, when a recession is causing massive layoffs, organizations must deal with the effects of employee turnover. Capturing their collective knowledge before they leave must be an essential part of normal business operations.

Failing to do so can have a detrimental impact on the organization's ability to maintain productivity levels and remain competitive. That's where a social knowledge management solution can come into play, as I'll explain here in our next installment of How to Cost Justify Your Social Knowledge Network Needs.

In a very real sense, "do more with less" has become a necessary reality. Organizations must identify those areas of their business operations where productivity levels need to be increased in order to account for the shortfall in personnel. The example below illustrates this, using the same 30 percent metric for time wasted on searches from an earlier example. (Click the image to enlarge.)

In many cases, CIOs are forced to fill organizational gaps by implementing more effective technology solutions. As can be seen in the example above, even though the workforce has been cut by 20 percent, the implementation of an effective social knowledge management solution, with its recognized improvement of 40 percent in operational productivity, effectively lowers the organization's productivity by only 5 percent.

This is seen through the 'effective workforce' numbers. In a 100-person organization with 70 percent productivity, the 'effective workforce' (i.e. a measure of the workforce's actual productivity) is 70.

Now say the headcount is dropped from 100 to 80. By implementing a successful social management solution, the 'effective workforce' only drops from 70 to 66, instead of to 56, minimizing the impact of this reduction.

In economic environments like this, a critical element to any organization's viability is managing the risk associated with diminished revenues and forced reductions in workforces. CIO's and information managers are tasked with preserving the organization's collective knowledge and critical IP to make sure that not only are remaining employees more productive, but that knowledge doesn't leave the organization.

Managing the risk poorly can have significant negative effects on the organization's ability to be competitive, innovative, and produce high quality products or services. Improving knowledge capture and reuse and preserving critical IP is an essential element of managing an organization's risk.

SKN Value Prop: Social technology can fill knowledge retention gaps and foster better organizational workflow to help weather workforce shortages.

The Web in 10 years

The Internet has turned 20 years old. It's hard to believe, because we've come such a tremendous way in two decades. But are we destined to continue this rapid pace of innovation into the future?

Ted Schadler ponders this in his recent article on Forrester's Blog for Information and Knowledge Management Professionals. He poses the questions, what will the next 10 years bring to the Web?

In my opinion, which I voiced in the comments (of course!), there will be more information on the Web than ever, and in a multitude of forms. I see the need to organize, search, access, distribute, share, control, and automate it, continuing to be the driving force of the next generation in knowledge management.

Social networks more popular than e-mail?

A Nielson Online report released last week found social networks and blogs are the fourth most popular online products, used by two-thirds of the online community. Trailing social networks was e-mail, which came in fifth.

Sharon Gaudin covered the study in this ComputerWorld article. But one look at the comments and it appears the public isn't buying these findings. I don't think social networking is as big as these numbers make it out to be, either.

As you can read in my comment, I believe social networks, while growing in popularity, aren’t going to replace e-mail anytime soon. What they will do, however, is complement it as part of our communication ecosystem. For more explanation, click over to my thoughts on the article.

Coming-out party percolating for Web 2.0 wallflowers

While Web 2.0 has infiltrated the consumer arena en mass, the same rapid adoption rate is yet to be seen in the enterprise sector. Many companies are Web 2.0 shy, and haven't explored social technologies, or have instituted policies against them.

Some of the latest research of this trend that I've come across is this Kforce survey, which found nearly 65 percent of companies have not taken advantage of any Web 2.0 platform. But I think the more interesting way to look at this stat is, 35 percent of companies have adopted social media into their business. And that opens discussion for how the adoption will play out.

I see a potential parallel to the way Web search was adopted by the enterprise. Web search was entrenched in society long before organizations started inserting Google-like search buttons on their Web sites and integrating enterprise search for aggregating content within the organization.

Why? Because search became so ingrained in everyone's personal lives that they began to expect it in their business lives as well.

I think social media adoption will experience the same trickle-down effect. People rely on the timeliness of RSS feeds, the contributed wisdom of blogs, and the more personal form of dialogue from podcasts, to get and share information. Most of us engage in social media in our personal lives and experience the benefit. It's only natural it will segue into business.

However, trickle-down technology from a consumer to a business environment often faces unique challenges, the biggest of which is the unknown. This can be broken down in three major questions:

Who are the legitimate players in the space? Businesses want to know that the applications they implement are created by solid companies with successful track records. The stakes are higher in business, and technology investments must be vetted and proven.

What are the implications of this technology? Because there are still a relatively small percentage of companies using social technology, information professionals want a sense of how the technology will impact business. It takes time to gather data on the tactics, tips, and tricks for a successful social strategy.

How do we control it? The last thing businesses want is for a social strategy to get out of control. Some concerns: Will it be clouded with bad input? Will it waste productivity? Will it generate bad content? Simply inserting blogs and wikis into an organization is no guarantee for success.

Fortunately, as more and more organizations adopt Web 2.0 technologies and social strategies, the unknown will continue to shrink. Some organizations are seeing real benefits of Web 2.0 that extend far beyond the basics of a recruiting tool. Our customers are prime examples.

In fact, I see social knowledge networks as a way to accelerate adoption of social tools. Say a SKN is the first social platform a business adopts. From there, we could see a trickle-up effect, in which the company begins adopting other social tools, such as consumer-facing technologies.

The reason I say this is that it's difficult to just use one social media tool. I think other regular social media users would agree, if you're blogging, you're probably also social networking, sharing YouTube videos, Tweeting, etc. Social media is centered around collaboration in a multitude of forms, naturally connecting one another personally and professionally. And it looks like it's only going to get bigger.

The SKN million-dollar question: What's in it for me?

You'd be hard pressed to find an organization investing in some technology without strong support that the technology will provide ROI. Most organizations want an answer to the million-dollar question, What's in it for me?

It's a question recently posed by David Tebbutt in his article for Personal Computer World. He presents social knowledge management and other similar functions in an "I scratch your back, you scratch mine" light. Meaning, sharing knowledge and wisdom is not just an act of altruism, it provides real benefit to both the provider and recipient of that knowledge.

When someone can make information more relevant and of higher value, it in turn makes them more relevant and of higher value. And really, who doesn’t want to increase their own value and worth within their company these days?

In essence, social knowledge networks are a facilitator of this knowledge altruism. They connect vetted information with the advice of colleagues, which serves to make information more robust, people smarter, and organizations better equipped to get the most from their information and human assets.

Tebbutt also says, "An organization needs to choose whether to keep the social interactions within a controlled boundary or to let the outside world in." It's worth noting that a closed system within an organization is often not a choice, but a necessity for those that need to build, maintain, and manage social knowledge in an organized and secure fashion.

But smart organizations use a strategy to control who provides what knowledge to prevent a Wikipedia-like environment, where information lacks veracity and non-experts provide bad information. With such a security model in place, organizations are on the right track to realizing knowledge altruism.

Lincoln Center reopens Alice Tully Hall with a night to remember

What’s better than a grand event for an even grander cause? The Lincoln Center for Performing Arts recently celebrated the re-opening of Alice Tully Hall in honor of Laurie Tisch. The Lincoln Center and Inmagic have a strong relationship that goes back more than 10 years, and Inmagic was there to support a longtime client and its contribution to the arts.

Lincoln Center has adopted Inmagic Presto and has been using Inmagic's DB/Text solution to archive and capture photos of performances, old programs, and documentation -- basically anything and everything that's deemed "archievable."

The renovation of the performance space also marks the completion of the first phase of a major campus redevelopment project, and serves as a launch to Lincoln Center’s year-long 50th anniversary celebration, which begins in May.

If you check out the photos, you’ll see the transformation aims to fully modernize concert halls and public spaces, and renew its 16-acre urban campus using integrated information technologies for enhancing the visitor experience. Inmagic has been selected to create the digital repository that will manage all of the images for the public media displays.

As attending Inmagic clients Madeline Cohen of Newsweek, Paul Wittekind of Porzio, and Judith Johnson from Lincoln Center can attest, it was a night to kick back, relax, and enjoy the performances and the people in a world-class performance hall like none other.

We also snapped a few shots while we enjoyed the evening. You can check out our slideshow on our Flickr page.

CMSWire highlights Inmagic's 'tude

CMSWire covered KMWorld's Top 100 Companies That Matter in Knowledge Management in 2009 listing. In the article, which the editors headlined with "KMWorld's Top 100 Has 'Tude in Spades,' Inmagic was highlighted as one of the honorees. Thanks for the mention! Goes to show a little 'tude goes a long way.

The community will set you free

Studies have shown that using bad information can cause drops in productivity, something we discussed in our last installment of our How to Cost Justify Your Social Knowledge Network Needs series. To give you a better idea of how this concept plays out, I'm illustrating a real-world example.

Consider a lead scientist in a pharmaceutical company at the late stages of a drug testing project. Say she has access to a vetted, high-quality, relevant report describing the side effects of the drug in a certain section of the population that's prone to Alzheimer's disease. This report would inform her decision to continue testing. Failure to do so might lead to a more prolonged and expensive FDA approval process, or even costly and damaging litigation.

Many organizations are forced to address data quality because of other strict regulations, such as Sarbanes-Oxley, FDA regulations, Six Sigma requirements, and so on. Addressing these regulations not only has an effect on expenses, but also can play a significant role in driving revenue.

For instance, "By introducing data quality initiatives, some companies have added millions of dollars to their bottom line as they gain benefits such as increased sales, lower distribution costs, and better compliance,"according to Gartner analyst Andreas Bitterer.

It is critical that information professionals and, more importantly, worker communities, inform the organization as to the quality and relevance of the content in their systems. Bitterer recommends that "organizations need 'data stewards,' people within the business who are responsible for the quality of the information."

However, the reality is that businesses are finding it increasingly difficult to identify and empower these individuals. In addition, this "weeding and feeding" action is a collaborative, ongoing process, requiring multiple professionals.

A solution lies in "social curation," which leverages the community's knowledge and wisdom. Technologies to enable this are critical. A core capability of a social knowledge management system is the ability of the community as a whole to provide this weeding and feeding capability, rather than relying solely on a single individual or group for this activity.

This creates an efficient, high-quality system, which is particularly beneficial when organizations are short on staff and funding. I'll unfold that onion next time!

SKN Value Prop: Leveraging community wisdom makes it easy and efficient to find the information you're looking for.

Take a bow, partners

Like we promised yesterday, we're bringing you the winners of our partners awards. We presented these awards at our partners conference last month, and there were many heartfelt congratulations to go around. We also added photos from the awards ceremony to our Flickr album for you to check out.

And the winners are ...

The following three companies generated the highest sales revenue in their category for all Inmagic partners:

New software sales: Maxus Australia Pty. Ltd., Melbourne, Australia

Total revenues: Andornot, Vancouver, Canada

Top referral partner: DC Magic, Washington, D.C.

But we couldn't ignore the outstanding work done by many of our other partners as well. We also honored these companies with awards for outstanding contributions as an Inmagic partner:

Crew-Noble Information Systems, San Francisco

Content Innovations, San Francisco

doc6, Spain

InfoCrofters, North Carolina

Infospecs, New Zealand

Mindex Systems, South Africa

Trimagic Software Pty Ltd., Australia

Thanks again to all our partners for your hard work over the past year, and for coming all the way out to Woburn, Mass., for our conference. We hope it was as productive for you as it was for us. Let's rock and roll in 2009!

Our partners aren't camera shy

We had our camera ready during our partners conference last month, and snapped some shots of the action. Check out our slideshow to see us and our partners setting the table for future sales and customer service initiatives. Here's one of Phil speaking to the group at lunch:

Our album concludes with some photos from our fondue dinner together. It was delish! At the restaurant, we also announced our sales award winners for 2008. We'll have those names, along with photos, next time around!

How customers are bringing business benefits to bear

One of the best parts of our jobs is hearing success stories from our customers. It's a great feeling knowing we've solved their problem and made their work easier.

At our partners conference last month, our partners shared some feedback and success stories they've recently heard from customers. Here are some things organizations around the world are saying about our technology. We've redacted any names and personal information, because we don't have the go-ahead to publish it yet. Anyway, I think we were all smiling after hearing this!

Fine-tuned customization. A new Inmagic customer had long-wanted to set up a fully searchable online database for its new social interest community. Since working with Inmagic, its non-technical people now have a single point of access to easily and intutively find information. The system also allows non-English-speaking users to access information in other languages without needing an English-speaking mediator. The organization was delighted by the flexibility and capacity of the system to deliver this very specific range of capabilities.

Better than Documentum. A museum and foundation with a vast number of diverse documents attempted to implement Documentum. However, the program did not fit its needs. The musuem since chose Inmagic, and implemented an Intranet with very positive feedback from library staff and end users.

Robust, yet intuitive. Fourteen universities collaborated to improve community access to agricultural information and research using Inmagic. Key system criteria included the ability to customize for public use, integration with Google, and incorporation of social Web 2.0 capabilities. The customer found that few platforms were capable of handling digital meta data with such ease for the end user, other than Inmagic.

Scalable functionality. A law firm and current Inmagic customer wanted to grow and customize its ILS. It needed to add satellite collections, self-checkout, and Web access to its OPAC. The Inmagic partner provided an all-in-one solution without having to migrate data, or re-license and re-train staff. The client is pleased with its decision to stay with Inmagic.

Real-time asset management. A leading engineering and architectural organization needed to better manage a library and materials collection. Permissions had been a recurring issue. But with Inmagic, it now has a more up-to-date inventory of materials and OPAC access. This an immediate value-add for architects and designers. It saves considerable time, resulting in a measureable ROI for serials management. The client is now looking to roll out the system to multiple locations.

Reliable access and control of data. An emergency and rescue service selected Inmagic because of its attractive price point and flexible application design. The customer's records were unmanageable through MS Access. The Inmagic project is the only successful IT initiative in the last five years. The customer is now realizing ROI through reliable access and control of files, and conformance with industry regulations.

I think everyone walked out of the partner meeting with a greater sense of purpose and clearer vision of the goals and objectives for 2009 and the years to come. We have a few other items to share with you from our partners conference, including some lively pictures, and awards recognizing the outstanding work our partners have done over the past year. Check back next week for the goods!

When good organizations use bad content

When we last met for our How to Cost Justify Your Social Knowledge Network Needs post, we explained how having the right information at the right time can return significant productivity gains. But what happens when organizations have the wrong information? Let's take a look as we move forward with our series.

Organizations amass extraordinary amounts of data as part of normal business operations. The quality of this content, as well as its relevance to both the organization and the individual worker can be, at best, dubious.

Studies conducted suggest that at least 25 percent of critical data within Fortune 1,000 companies continues to be inaccurate. According to Gartner analyst Ted Friedman, "Nearly every business function will have direct costs associated with poor data quality."

Organizations have hundreds of potential data sources. In your own daily life, you may come across news and media, payment information, legal and corporate filings, and industry directories. There are typically large costs associated with gathering data from third parties, so ensuring that the data is of high quality and relevance becomes an important cost consideration.

Quality and relevance of content plays a critical role in determining operational costs, especially when considering the consequences of poor quality. In a manufacturing organization, poor-quality product has the effect of increasing costs due to rework, Return Merchandise Authorizations (RMAs), increased support costs and compliance costs.

In much the same way, poor-quality content has the effect of significantly increasing costs. When poor-quality content is acted on in the absence of an understanding of its dubious nature, the cost effects can be huge. Next time, we'll show you how this plays out in an example illustrating the costs of low-quality content.

SKN Value Prop: Identifying and eliminating poor-quality content can increase productivity and reduce operational costs.

Inside R.V. Anderson's Presto experience

Since announcing our Social Knowledge Network strategy at the SLA conference 2008 and Presto 3.0 last fall, we've found organizations have many common questions as they evaluate the platform and decide whether it's right for their organization. They're determining if it will fit nicely into their workflow, be easy to use, and most important, deliver worthwhile benefits.

For these organizations, it can be helpful to learn from real-life customer experiences to understand why they selected Presto, what they learned in their implementations, and of course, the benefits they received.

One of our long-time Presto customers, R.V. Anderson Associates Limited has graciously shared their experience in this podcast. R.V. Anderson is a consulting engineering firm based in Toronto, Canada. You might remember them from our coverage of the SLA conference 2008.

At the show, R.V. Anderson's Terri Zimmer, Supervisor, Information Management; and Kirsten Warren, Manager, Marketing and Business Development, presented a white paper called "Engineering KM 2.0: Disturbing the Status Quo." It covered the company's new knowledge management initiative, which centered around Presto.

After the show, Janelle from our podcasting team had talked to Terri and Kirsten about their experience with Presto, what led them to the platform, and how it's changed R.V. Anderson's KM system. We're sharing that conversation with you today in the podcast below.

At first, you might think it's outdated. But here's why it's not. At the time of our conversation, R.V. Anderson was on the previous version of Presto. They've recently upgraded to Presto 3.0, and are now actively planning how they will socialize the content in their application.

By listening to the podcast now, you'll see exactly where R.V. Anderson was before they started using the new platform, including insight into their business needs, operations, and workflow.

You'll get an idea of the types of organizations using Presto 3.0, and also glean some insight into why R.V. Anderson upgraded and what they hope to gain from the new version.

Take a listen, and we'll be checking in with R.V. Anderson soon to see how things are going with Social Presto. Thanks for sharing your story, Terri, Kirsten, and everyone at R.V. Anderson!

Lucas McDonnell takes KM head on

We started off light and easy when we introduced you to Lucas McDonnell last week in our Info Pro-file Q&A. We learned about his background and what he likes to blog about on Today, we're bringing you the second half of Janelle's interview with Lucas, where they dive head first into KM trends and technologies.

Lucas has some really interesting ideas about where KM technologies are going, and what their future looks like. We round out the interview with his productivity tips for getting more out of the day, and what he likes to do in his free time.

JK: What trends, news, and technologies are you following right now?

LM: One trend that particularly interests me is the (very slow) move toward more uses of cloud computing and Web-hosted applications. Google's got their online Google Docs product, and it looks like they'll be releasing their online storage GDrive sometime soon.

I'm also very interested in information and knowledge distribution technologies (namely things like RSS and other types of syndication and mobile information retrieval), as well as other more general topics like the future of desktop operating systems and the impact this has on the way we interact with information.

On the non-technology side, I'm always interested in knowledge sharing in general, and its very different manifestations throughout the work (and non-work) world.

JK: What do you think they hold for the future of knowledge management?

LM: Hopefully movement towards Web-based apps means less need for mundane, knowledge-shallow tasks within organizations. (Although outsourcing at one time seemed to promise this, and there still seems to be no shortage of mundane tasks still at large throughout most organizations.)

The key is not only moving the technology onto the Web, but actually figuring out how to move the whole application and its associated work out into the Web world, and doing it cheaper than you can do it in-house.

As far as distribution technologies go, I think we're getting close to hitting the desktop threshold for things like RSS. I'd argue that pretty much everybody that's interested in RSS has got it on their desktop (although some people who are using things like iGoogle may not even know they're using it!).

Making RSS readily available to mobile users seems to be the next logical step -- but I don't think the technology or the user savvy is really there yet. 'Value-added' RSS seems to also be an important next step -- not just aggregating relevant content, but figuring out a way to add some richness to that content that the user couldn't go out and do on their own even if they had the time.

Finally, as far as knowledge sharing goes, humans have been doing it for far to long to quit now. It's how we've gotten as far as we have as a species, so let's do it both effectively as responsibly.

JK: How important do you think the trend towards social libraries is?

LM: 'Social' anything seems to be all the rage at the moment, yet spaces like libraries have always been a social space (albeit often only tacitly). Technology seems to only now be starting to catch up to what we do very effectively as human beings: socialize, recommend, and reject.

In the case of libraries, the online social elements also don't always fly -- since any online social iteration usually needs a critical mass to really get started (and for smaller libraries, this is often tough to achieve).

Not to mention the fact that keeping up the momentum within a social space often depends on a user base that can be fickle -- even if the critical mass question is solved, it's often tough to keep things going.

While I think there are definitely opportunities for libraries (and other public spaces), a good dose of realism is often needed as well as people get excited about those opportunities.

JK: What do you like to read, for entertainment and professionally?

LM: I enjoy reading history (I think it gives us a great perspective on essentially how we all got to where we are), but I have a terrible memory for facts and figures. So while I may have read lots of history, don't ask me about dates!

In terms of staying up-to-date on knowledge management, I use a combination of custom Google news searches and blog RSS feeds. It provides me with far more than I could ever read, but I try to spend 30 or 40 minutes a day scanning my pages of feeds.

JK: Do you have any productivity tips to get more out of each day?

LM: Stop checking your e-mail! This is one of the few tips that has actually worked for me, and when I actually have the self-discipline to apply it, I see a marked improvement in how much I can get done in a day. Well, of course, I can't stop checking it entirely, but limiting how often I check it really does work for me.

JK: If you had more time in the day, what would you like to do more of?

LM: Besides get an extra hour of sleep? I would probably read a book. I usually read before I go to bed, but by then, I'm too tired to read more than a few pages. (This is usually the only time I get to read stuff that's not work-related.) I always mean to take a book and read for an hour on the weekend, but there just never seems to be time. So as unexciting as it sounds, I'd have to go with reading.

Lots of get well wishes for Jean Billingham!

An unfortunate event happened to Jean Billingham, Inmagic's consulting manager, last week. She was struck by a hit-and-run driver while crossing Montvale Avenue in Woburn, Mass., on her way to work Tuesday. She suffered a broken wrist, and had surgery on Thursday. She also has a twisted ankle and shoulder, not to menion some large bruises.

Fortunately, Jean is doing better now, and is recovery nicely. We wanted to share the news with you, and let you know she's doing ok. Hopefully Jean will be back in action soon!

Best wishes for a speedy recovery, Jean! We all miss you!

Our social libraries webinar, redeux

In January we held a webinar about implementing social libraries called The Social Library -- Beyond the Traditional OPAC. If you missed it or want to watch it again, the archived webinar is now available on our Web site.

Phil describes how the latest advances in social knowledge networks are expanding the reach of libraries, and enhancing collections through the integration of library workflow, information publishing, and social media capabilities. He also provides guidelines for putting social libraries in place in enterprise settings.

It's a must-see for social library beginners, who are trying the understand the impact of social libraries for their organization.

Inmagic named top 100 company in knowledge management by KMWorld

KMWorld's 100 Companies that Matter in Knowledge Management has been a coveted recognition among KM players since its inception nine years ago. This year, we were very honored to be included on the publication's list. Big thanks to the KMWorld editors for recognizing us!

With over 1,000 companies in the broad KM space, this award puts us in the top 10 percent of our industry. We announced the news today in a press release, which you can read below to learn more details about the award and why we were honored.

KMWorld Names Inmagic One of the 100 Companies that Matter in Knowledge Management for 2009

Editors of No. 1 Knowledge Management Publication Cite Inmagic’s Leading Innovation in Socialized Knowledge Management Solutions

WOBURN, Mass. -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- The editors of KMWorld Magazine have named Inmagic one of the 100 Companies that Matter in Knowledge Management. The annual listing distinguishes organizations in knowledge management that demonstrate commitment to customer-driven innovation and exceptional market agility. Inmagic was cited on merits of anticipating market demand for socialized knowledge management with its Inmagic® Presto platform, and actively engaging customers in its technology and business development processes.

“We thank the editors of KMWorld for recognizing and honoring our commitment to our customers and the markets we serve,” says Paul Puzzanghera, President and CEO of Inmagic. “The field of knowledge management is ever-evolving, and we’ve evolved with it to address the shift from traditional library needs to cross-functional social knowledge management requirements. Our customers are our driving force, and we’ll continue to invest in their future by developing solutions that address their bottom line.”

KMWorld’s award validates these achievements and further exemplifies the benchmark success Inmagic is experiencing. Inmagic introduced the industry to a new generation of knowledge management when it unveiled Social Presto in 2008. Presto lets companies capture and capitalize on their collective domain expertise—the “wisdom of the community”—by creating Social Knowledge Networks. These networks integrate top-down vetted information, with bottom-up social intelligence. This year, Inmagic introduced the first application built on Presto, Inmagic® Presto for Social Libraries. It creates a SOPAC (Social Online Public Access Catalog) that provides a unique framework for managing and enhancing library collections, and allows a secure, two-way information exchange between librarians and patrons.

For its integrated library system (ILS) users, Inmagic introduced Inmagic® DB/Text® Library Suite last year. This Web-based ILS is built on Inmagic’s family of library and information management tools, including Inmagic® Genie, DB/Text® Works, and Web Publisher Pro. DB/Text Library Suite gives librarians and information professionals a complete solution for collecting, managing, and providing access to library materials and collections, either over the Web or on a corporate network.

"Each company embodies as part of its culture agile and limber execution of its mission, embracing a spirit of both adaptability and innovation,” says Hugh McKellar, Editor at KMWorld Magazine.

Information and knowledge management professionals from industry leading companies like NASA, Newsweek, The National Endowment for Democracy, RV Anderson Associates, and The Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts rely on Inmagic’s ability to adapt and innovate, and to integrate knowledge management and social technologies in a secure, Web-based environment.


The leading information provider serving the Knowledge, Document, and Content Management systems market, KMWorld informs more than 50,000 subscribers about the components and processes—and subsequent success stories—that together offer solutions for improving business performance. KMWorld is a publishing unit of Information Today, Inc.


Inmagic, Inc. has been the industry leader in knowledge management and library automation applications for over 25 years. Today, Inmagic is at the forefront of the move to new generation knowledge management, creating Social Knowledge Networks that pair top-down, vetted corporate data with bottom-up, social wisdom of the community to address critical research and business objectives. Over 5,000 companies in 100 countries use Inmagic products, including Inmagic Presto, Inmagic Presto for Social Libraries, and the DB/Text product family, to gain unprecedented insight into customers, markets, competitors, research, intellectual properties, and more. Find out how much your company really knows. Visit Inmagic at

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.


Press contact(s): Kate Ritchie, Mike Cassettari,

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Gregory FCA
Kate Ritchie
610-642-8253 ext. 162
Inmagic, Inc.
Mike Cassettari

Passions fly during global partners conference

On the heels of our successful Presto for Social Libraries launch, Inmagic held its annual global partners conference last month. Our certified partners from Australia, Canada, Great Britain, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, and the U.S. convened in Woburn, Mass., for a meeting of the minds.

To say it was "social" was an understatement. As always, it was an exciting week and we had some great face-to-face time. It's nice to talk business and catch up as well. Our discussions were lively and productive, mainly focusing on our social knowledge management and social library solutions, and DB/Text Library Suite.

Paul, our President and CEO, kicked off the conference by reflecting on the company's significant progress and record results in 2008. He gave us an inspirational vision for continuing our success into the future.

Executives from across the organization, including sales, services, marketing, engineering, and support, also shared their successes and plans for the future.

Afterward, we moved on to detailed technical training workshops. We discussed customer needs across several areas, including social libraries, content and catalog publishing, and library automation. We then gave partners tools and guidance on how to best address those needs.

Perhaps some of the most interesting dialogue we heard was the customer feedback and success stories from around the world. We compiled some of these tid-bits from our notes, and we'll share them with you on the blog later this week.


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