Monday, November 2, 2009

Google Wave Book - A new openness in publishing

Gina Trapini announced yesterday on This Week in Google that she is working on a new book destined to be the definitive source of information on Google Wave. I find her total desire to put her knowledge into the public domain really refreshing. The book is being developed online using MediaWiki and is licensed under the Creative Commons License. While she does plan on publishing PDF and traditional paper versions, it is clear that Gina intends for this to be a dynamic reference guide that will be updated as Wave matures. Visit The Complete Wave Guide to experience this openness in information sharing.

What does all of this have to do with 21st Century Business? Several lessons can be learned from Gina by businesses who want to move forward.

  • Knowlege is meant to be shared, not hidden in some file share directory structure or locked behind passwords
  • Knowledge is ever changing. Just because the project is over or the documentation published the changes shouldn't stop. Documentation of a process or method that is not ever changing is outdated.

Too often businesses create new processes but then fail to stay in a mode of continuous improvement. Some companies implement the tools of the Internet like blogs, wikis, intranets but fail to realize the dynamic change that is the culture of the Internet. They ask "why aren't our tools successful". The answer is: "free them, free the knowledge and let your employees' creativity and innovation come to the surface."