Technical Writers, now called “Technical Communicators,” have been familiar with “Knowledge Management,” or “KM,” for decades.
But what is KM? One source describes KM as “the process of capturing, distributing and effectively using knowledge,” attributing that definition to Tom Davenport in 1994. Others have discussed the topic at length. Some of the most important aspects are “lessons learned” and “institutional history.”
Does this matter? Ask NASA. A story circulates: NASA cannot put “a man on the Moon” today.” Why? The knowledge left with the engineers who left when funds dried up, goal accomplished. And when those engineers died, now decades ago, the “lessons learned” and “institutional history” died with them. Now, for all our “advanced technology” with iPhones and 3D printing, we would be pressed to send someone back “in five years,” as Vice President Pence insists.”
Whether you believe this…
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