November 2009 Issue

News Features

An ambitious project is underway to digitize the complete cultural history of the European Union and make it available to the general public via Europeana, a digital library and museum. The project launched last November with roughly 2 million artifacts. It now counts 4.6 million items from more than 1,000 institutions among its collection, and it is expected to grow to 10 million items by 2010.
- Posted Oct 29, 2009
On Oct. 1, Emerald Group Publishing released 14 new subject collections, which will combine the company's ejournals and ebooks to offer comprehensive coverage of subject matter ranging from accounting and finance to healthcare management.
- Posted Oct 26, 2009
A series of recent moves has focused attention on search and social networks. Social networks have turned their attention to enhancing search features on their sites, but what they really may be searching for is the way to effectively monetize their services. Story by ITI Reporter Theresa Cramer, EContent Magazine.
Posted Nov 02, 2009
Every 2.6 seconds, the CAS (Chemical Abstracts Service) REGISTRY logs a new entry that defines and describes a recently discovered chemical substance. This statistic boggles the mind both for what it says about the pace of progress in scientific research and for what it says about CAS's ability to keep up with that pace.
- Posted Nov 06, 2009

Featured Stories

At one time, knowledge management (KM) purely encompassed the library-style research-and-documentation endeavor required to organize knowledge-primarily for companies that trade in knowledge, such as law firms and consultancies. Early in its life, KM was defined by Thomas A. Stewart in a Fortune magazine article entitled "Mapping Corporate Brainpower," as "Efforts to transmute the accumulated knowledge of individual employees into a corporate asset." Today, KM has grown well beyond these original boundaries, and its tenets are leveraged by organizations of all kinds to manage information and intellectual assets.
- Posted Nov 13, 2009
As we eagerly await each successive advance, we've gotten used to thinking that when it comes to content, richer is always better. More rich media! More audio, more online video, more animation-this is the stuff that makes today's web attractive and exciting, though not necessarily more efficient or more useful. Since most of this eye candy is either part of or is sponsored by advertising, it seems safe to assume that the richness of the content correlates to the outcome desired by advertisers, which is, by and large, to induce us to make some kind of purchase. However, while that assumption makes sense on the surface, it turns out that the reality is more subtle and complex than suggested by the simple proposition that "rich content sells."
Posted Nov 19, 2009
Social networking is making significant inroads into the business practices of major organizations, not the least of which is improving customer support. Companies are using social media as a tool to allow customers to engage with each other to get their technical and customer service questions answered—impacting traffic to existing customer service and help desk functions and, even more importantly, improving service and cementing relationships in the process.
Posted Nov 04, 2009


I just finished reading the 20th anniversary edition of Neil Postman's Amusing Ourslves to Death. Even in the harsh light of hindsight, his analysis of television's effect on discourse remains compelling. In fact-when I consider the effectiveness of television as entertainment medium-I can see how efforts to transform news into entertainment in an attempt for the function to fit the form has contributed to the declining value of news.
- Posted Oct 30, 2009
Lest we forget, it was just a couple of years ago that "free and ad-supported" was the refrain that drove the second digital go-go era after 2004. Apart from the recession, the big difference now is that the offline TV and print businesses that helped underwrite big media's digital pursuits are now under siege. The content-creation engines that built these brands seem to be threatened, and the digital platform is not really mature enough to support media-making as we have known it.
- Posted Nov 05, 2009
Every generation has its axioms that seem to resonate and to succinctly express a significant belief.
- Posted Nov 11, 2009
There is room for innovation and improvement in mobile search. This message came through loud and clear as I prepared a workshop on Mobile Search Future Prospects for the JRC Institute for Prospective Technological Studies of the European Commission. Content (what the individual is searching for) and context (the where, when, and why that may have prompted the query) change all the rules, diminishing the importance of universal search based on keyword queries and with it the chances of Google and Microhoo to dominate the mobile space.
- Posted Nov 16, 2009
I don't know of a single major enterprise that isn't experimenting with social computing behind the firewall. Every one of those organizations is also surely trying to figure out the best way to obtain business value at a time when "Enterprise 2.0 best practices" seem very circumstantial. I'll propose a simple way to look at the challenge: The things you need to do for successful social computing within the enterprise are the exact same things you need to do to build an effective intranet (and vice versa).
- Posted Nov 09, 2009
I wish I had a buck for every time somebody who works in the financial markets or the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries said something like this to me: "We can't get into social media, blogs, Twitter, and the like because of the regulations in our industry." Nonsense!
- Posted Nov 02, 2009

Faces of EContent

"I was once at a customer site for a few days and noticed that a printer had been running continually, requiring an employee to feed it reams of paper..."
- Posted Nov 02, 2009

Case Studies

JackBe sought a solution that would help consumers have a good user experience with its new product, which was part of the emerging mashup market segment. The company chose to work with Acquia Drupal to launch a community in order to meet the needs of inquiring customers, as well as to give them a gentle and productive introduction to mashups in general and JackBe's solution in particular.
- Posted Nov 04, 2009