From: Andy Campbell <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Bob Knisely <email@example.com>
Sent: Sat, Jan 21, 2012 6:55 am
Subject: RE: Two upcoming meetings and “PRAWN” – a question for you! — Bob Knisely
Hi Bob –
I think it is great that you and Mike are pushing ahead with this. It is a wonderful idea.
The technology that we can offer for consideration is Microsoft’s SharePoint. While it can do “Facebook-like” things like blogs, wikis – it is also very capable of helping distributed workgroups manage projects. It can provide “My Sites” where PRAWN members could describe themselves and their areas of expertise. The security is robust, and can devolve down to the document level. Access can be controlled for some parts of the site, and some not. SharePoint is also nearly ubiquitous (as in “available” – although not necessarily used) across the Federal Government, so if PRAWN participants wanted to extend something into the Agency’s own SharePoint environment, that would work.
We have found that there are two basic ingredients of success for these kind of efforts – simplicity and user-driven design. If we accept the notion that not all PRAWN members (particularly those born at a more comfortable distance from the end-of-days) will be technophiles, the key is to start simple. It is also important that a “PRAWN core design team” create the first iteration of the PRAWN technical platform. An added advantage of SharePoint is that it is very plastic – and can be rapidly configured.
Another element of all this could be something we call “User-Oriented Information Design” (UOID) which was refined by a guy named Bob Hiebeler, who was the worldwide Knowledge Management Director for Arthur Andersen. It is organized around three simple questions – “who are you, where are you, and what do you want to do today?” PRAWN may have the opportunity to do Knowledge Management right – a rare phenomenon.
OK – to your question: what is needed?
• A PRAWN SharePoint site with some start-up design by a small PRAWN
core group. This would serve as a starter site for the growing network to adapt as mission and activity grow.
• A few early ideas about the nature of PRAWN activity – “what does PRAWN want to do today”?
• Some basic SharePoint training for the core design group (which we could provide)
• A SharePoint introductory curriculum for PRAWN members coming onto the platform
• One or more PRAWN “site custodians” who would be willing to watch over the site (make sure it isn’t getting cluttered, etc)
• The Applied Knowledge Group has been in the SharePoint business for nine years – more or less since since SharePoint was released by Microsoft
• We designed and totally support the FAA’s Knowledge Services Network (KSN), which has 42,000 users and spans the entire air transportation sector
• We designed the DHS/USCIS Enterprise Collaboration Network (ECN) which has 22,000 users, and we continue to support it
• We are a Microsoft Gold Partner in collaboration and information sharing
• Several of our staff have high-level clearances
• We have an excellent relationship with Microsoft’s Federal Division, and have reach-back to Microsoft
Good luck on Monday and hi to Mike.