Working on the Problems of Information Overload

Our colleagues at Factiva have decided to start their own blog, Let's Talk Knowledge - congrats gang! Might I humbly say that they were inspired by Synaptica Central, and thank YOU, our readers, for helping make this enough of a success as to inspire others here at Dow Jones!

Ken kicks off this new endeavor with some interesting thoughts on "Information Overload." The problem, he posits, is not that we have too much information, but have not invested enough in the tools to manage and analyze the information. IT investments have focused on creating, storing and distributing information (and, I would argue, retrieving it), but NOT in how we analyze or synthesize it. As Daniela and I have argued here on Synaptica Central in posts on data visualization and our Semantic Webinar, that is truly an area that needs work!

Let's be clear though: it's not about the latest widgets! It's not about the pretty, sparkling thing that just flashed in the browser window! It's about data that can be used and re-used in any form - be it sparkly, conservative, mobile or consumed by machines. Putting time and effort into crafting the models for this data can reduce confusion, reduce time spent towards rules-writing or custom query building, and allow a greater diversity in a product portfolio from the same data set: not just in delivery channels, but in customer focused channels as well. Employees are more productive, prouder of their work and motivated to innovate. Customers get what they need - they reduce information overload as well as relevancy overload - and are much happier and more loyal for it.

We're working hard here at Dow Jones to integrate and evolve our data models to full take advantage of the semantic web. Taxonomies and thesauri are becoming ontologies; lightweight ontologies are being transformed to take advantage of the full power of RDF, OWL and SKOS. Welcome to the blogosphere Ken, thanks for your thoughts, and we look forward to continuing to innovate with you and your team!