FOAF & Social Networking as Key to Enterprise 2.0

foaf:


The most productivity-enhancing collaborative software will fail (and has largely failed) to achieve critical mass in enterprises without a robust social network underpinning it.  There you go, a huge claim without a warrant but I'm sure I could find enough warrants (PDF) to prove it.


While Enterprise 2.0 is about more than social networking websites on the corporate intranet, more than corporate blogging and wikis, more than roundy corners, reflections and drop shadows, the massive uptake of Social Networking applications on the public web makes it the best paradigm for allowing Web 2.0 to infiltrate the enterprise. 


So back to my point - collaboration software (like Oracle ECM, Oracle WebCenter Spaces etc) is great for managing project collateral, schedules, and providing granular security for "team members".  But that all pre-supposes that you know who your team *is*.  And THAT presupposes you know who your team *should be*.  And THAT presupposes that you are able to *find* reliable expert candidates for your teams.


Historically that was done with your personal social network stored in your brain, in your physical office cubical geography, and your sneaker net.  By bringing in social networking and, specifically, the FOAF (friend of a friend) structuring to social data we are able to bring those defined and programmatically accessible relationships to bear in collaborative settings. 


When combined with user ratings, reputation and expertise ratings that I've already written about, FOAF formatted and automatically parsed social graph data becomes the last (but heretofore missing) link in the collaborative enterprise2.0 productivity enhancement technology space.


I predict radical increases in uptake and adoption rates when this is incorporated OOTB.

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