InfoWorld writes in a special report:
Where do you find all the bits and pieces that comprise your business intelligence? Some of the more interesting snippets are probably trapped in thousands of e-mails languishing in cluttered inboxes or in archived instant messages that no one will ever bother to access again. And no doubt theres a lot of useful information stuck in stagnant documents or databases, moldering away on the intranet.
To qualify as intelligence, information must be both used and renewed. Good synapses fire fast and standard groupware can be too structured and rigid to support real-time, off-the-cuff data collection for workgroups or projects. Easy and informal, e-mail and IM remain the knowledge-sharing tools of choice for many employees. But after a message has been sent and read, it often drops into the network netherworld never to be seen or used again.
To facilitate the exchange of information and to establish customized, user-friendly data archives, companies such as Cisco, Disney, Hewlett-Packard, General Motors, IBM, Intel, Microsoft , Nokia, Novell, and Yahoo are turning to a new breed of collaboration tools: blogs and wikis. Each helps fill the gaps left by traditional groupware in a different way.
Blogs and wikis play opposite roles, says Martin Wattenberg, a researcher on the collaborative user experience team at IBM Watson Research Center. Blogs are based on an individual voice; a blog is sort of a personal broadcasting system. Wikis, because they give people the chance to edit each others words, are designed to blend many voices. Reading a blog is like listening to a diva sing, reading a wiki is like listening to a symphony.