Executive Information Systems, Inc.

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Implementing Enterprise Knowledge Portals

An EKP is an enhanced Enterprise Information Portal (EIP). It is an EIP that:

  • is goal-directed toward knowledge production, knowledge integration, and knowledge management, and also
  • Focuses upon, provides, produces and manages information about the validity of the information it supplies,
  • Provides information about your business and meta-information about the degree to which you can rely on that information,
  • Distinguishes knowledge from mere information,
  • Provides a facility for producing knowledge from information
  • orients one toward producing and integrating knowledge rather than information.

EIS believes that there are no existing Enterprise Knowledge Portals (EKPs) or e-Business Knowledge Portals (eKPs), despite claims to the contrary by vendors. We have outlined our position on this issue in "Enterprise Knowledge Portals Revisited," Enterprise Knowledge Portals: What They Are and What They do", "Enterprise Knowledge Portals and e-Business Solutions", and Enterprise Information Portals and Knowledge Management, KMCI Press/Butterworth Heinemann, 2003.

Though we believe there are no knowledge portals yet, we also believe that that these can be built by integrating present technology, and we offer EIS services to others wanting to build either the architectural foundations of the knowledge portal in sophisticated information portal applications that have the capabiity to evolve into knowledge portals, or the first EKPs (and eKPs) themselves. Since EIS was first to define the EKP, and since has developed its requirements and architecture in much greater detail than any other company, we believe we are uniquely qualified to provide consulting services on implementing knowledge portals or their architectural foundations.

The Enterprise Knowledge Portal is an application on the verge of development. The technology it requires is in existence now. The cost of its development is low as software applications go, since its implementation is largely a matter of systems integration, with the exception of its intelligent agent (IA) component that exceeds current IA capabilities. On the other hand, the benefits associated with the EKP are great. They are nothing less than realization of the promise of the EIP to achieve increased ROI, competitive advantage, increased effectiveness, and acceleration of innovation.

EIPs are risky because (neglecting data quality applications which involve relatively superficial quality issues) they fail to evaluate the information they produce and deliver for quality and validity. Nothing, including EKPs, can ensure certainty about information, models, or knowledge claims. But EKP applications incorporate a systematic approach to knowledge claim testing and evaluation (knowledge claim validation) that eliminates errors and produces quality assured information. In the category of portal technology they, not EIPs, are the best we can do. They, not EIPs, are the future of the portal space.

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