Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Wikibon, An experiment in Collective Intelligence

Few weeks ago, David Vellante contacted me about his new project, Wikibon and invited me to attend Peer Incite research meetings. Wikibon is a project where he is trying to harvest and share the collective intelligence of IT community for market research, industry analysis and insights. Having previously founded the storage research group at IDC, it was no surprise that Dave picked enterprise storage as the first industry segment to target with Wikibon project.

What piqued my interest?

Considering industry analyst world being a walled garden with entry only allowed to chosen few who can pay hefty entrance fee, Wikibon is an interesting experiment. Any cracks in garden walls are a welcoming change for Average Joe like me. But my interest in Wikibon extend beyond just an open source experiment in IT market research. I am more excited about the harvesting and sharing collective intelligence aspects of this 'public' experiment.

How beneficial will it be for an organization to make decisions based on this collective intelligence instead of listening to chosen few with loudest voice or political connections? Unfortunately, considering the competitive advantage such approach offers, few organizations who experimented with collective intelligence internally willing to share and discuss their methods and findings publicly. I believe that blogs and wikis are not just external facing marketing communication tools for enterprises. They also make excellent methods for harvesting the collective intelligence of everyone with in an organization especially those operating in knowledge-intensive industry.

Unfortunately, Dave couldn't make me get up early enough in the morning to attend a meeting at 9:00am ET (6:00am on my coast), later turned out to be just a typo and time zone confusion. Finally, this morning I attended the Peer Incite research meeting on Data De-duplication topic. Even though, this topic doesn't excite me anymore [More in a later post. I have moved on to other exciting and new topics.], the affiliation of vocal participants and dynamics among the participants was interesting to observe.

So, what is my impression and feedback on Wikibon project, community web presence and Peer Incite meeting?

As mentioned before, Wikibon project definitely has piqued my interest irrespective of reasons aligning with Dave's vision or not. I am planning to monitor its progress, share my opinions, and participate and report as time permits.

[Too late in the night] I will try to continue my feedback on this project in another post.


  1. I looked at this ages ago, seemed to be 90% content provided by Fred Moore, relating to Fred Moore.

  2. Chris,

    You most probably checked out Wikibon at very early stage. I notice few more people have been writing now too.


  3. Collective intelligence is fine but it has to be distilled down to an actionable plan; the problem for an organization could be that each department will put forth its own viewpoint; the decision maker needs to have a holistic perspective that considers the effect of any issue, enterprise storage for example, on IT, finance, marketing, etc. Visit www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk to learn more about data storage.