Information Technology One of the Main Sources Term Paper

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Information Technology

One of the main sources of development of human beings is through the development of knowledge and in this exercise; we shall be talking about a group in our society who are mainly interested in the development of knowledge -- a university. In these organizations also, information technology now plays an important role as the storage and transfer of knowledge within the organizations and from outside the organization. In this, information technology has to play a major role.

In earlier times, it was felt that knowledge had to be accumulated over a lifetime, and this consisted of facts, events, procedures and other matters. This was stored in our memories, while today a lot of the storage takes place in the memory disks of computers whose capacity keeps increasing and it is the job of the information technology specialist who has to advise us on where the information is to be stored and when the time has come for changing our storage systems. Combined with this is the end of a situation in life where one concentrated on a single job throughout life, and today we have individuals changing their jobs as they develop, in search for better opportunities. In earlier situations, the knowledge available with an individual was lost when the individual left the organization. Today, it is being stored in the information technology sources and it is up to the information technology specialist to decide on the methods of storage, so that it can be collected by a potential user at later dates when he requires it. This is a question of managing the knowledge. (Knowledge Modeling Techniques for Developing Knowledge Management Systems)

At the same time, it has to be understood that the requirement of knowledge in a knowledge developing organization like an university is not the requirement of a continuous flow of knowledge from one point to another, but the requirement will be for an individual and it has to be made available to him immediately, according to his requirement. When this is done properly, it will help in solving the difficulties that research faces, developments made quicker, and innovative new ideas tested immediately. Thus one can say that the flow of knowledge is probably as important as the storage of knowledge. This is also an area where the information technology experts within the organization play an important role. (From Information Management to Knowledge Management: Are You Prepared?)

It is the group of people providing the required technological support to information technology that can keep all developments of information technology within an organization running in a manner that will provide support to each other and stop the exchange of information. It is clear that the intelligence of the developers of knowledge within a university that provides for the success of the organization in terms of fulfillment of the purpose for which it was set up. For this purpose, it is important that all knowledge developers be students, teachers, and researchers simultaneously. The skills of a student are required to learn the changed knowledge in a fast changing world, the skills of a teacher are required to be able to spread out the acquired knowledge among a large group who are collaborating in the developing of the knowledge and it is the research individual who will create the new developments as a university is expected to do. (Carvalho; Ferreira, 2001)

Another aspect of the function of knowledge management within any knowledge developing organization is also an area of research and practice as that is the culture of the organization and like all living and developing organization, the culture has to spread through all functions of the organization. Thus the process of knowledge management also has to deepen the understanding of processes of knowledge within the organization and develop required procedures and methods that will help in the transformation of knowledge into matters of further development for the entire economy and society. The view today is that knowledge by itself does not serve any purpose, but the knowledge has to help our present society proceed further to be of service to its members.

The process is not a sudden flash in the plan but has been going on for a number of years and it can be seen in many different developments of knowledge like research and development and innovations management, information systems management itself, information science, computer science, library studies, innovation economics, science and technology social studies, epistemology and many other fields. One of the greatest developments due to information technology has been to provide a common space where all these different subjects can interact, exchange information and thus help in the progress of each other. In this the technological support individuals play a major role as the availability of information should be free, but the freedom should not lead to a situation where it may be misused. For this purpose, knowledge of technology itself is not enough, but it is essential to develop layers of access so that a person may be able to access only limited knowledge and for the higher levels of knowledge, he has to get necessary permissions for access. (Carvalho; Ferreira, 2001)

It has to be understood that solutions to problems of knowledge management often do not lie within the areas of technology only, but often have to be supported by human technology. This means adapting of the methods of knowledge management to behaviors of individuals within the organization, and probably the greatest difficulty in management of knowledge has been seen to be changing of people's behavior. Those who deal with knowledge for the better part of their lives often feel that knowledge is an asset in itself and thus it is a matter of exchange not to be given away free.

At the same time, for development to occur, the thoughts of development come through sudden inspirations like the famous apple on Newton's head or the bath in which Archimedes was taking a bath. It may not be as simple today, yet the development of knowledge is not a matter of only trading, but more like a human birth where the future of the developed baby is never known beforehand. It is true that for free transfer of knowledge there are many technical limitations, but that is much less important than getting an acceptance from the holder's of knowledge a real desire to exchange knowledge freely. Otherwise exchange of knowledge would only be a tool which would serve economic purposes like reducing traveling for passage of information between different countries, or reducing the requirement for seminars and other similar matters. (Knowledge management technology)

At the same time when knowledge is sent over the Internet, it is sent in the form of a document which can be stored and even referred later, so that with the development of knowledge of the individual who had requested the information, it may become more useful to him. In many instances the limitations of using knowledge comes from our own pride as we all feel that we are superior to others. This is a psychological problem and cannot be solved through any method other than the development of man, which is a natural process and no one can really say when the change will take place. Often the change comes with age, when an individual realizes the limitations of his own knowledge and the functions that it can serve. Going back to Newton, it takes to understand that knowledge of an individual is like the grains of sand on a beach. Maybe even the store of knowledge in the information system will also not be the full beach, but may be that it will at least be a cupful of sand.

To conclude, all activities within an organization have to be directed towards the success…[continue]

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