My mother taught me never to volunteer information. While this can be good advice from a strategic standpoint, it seems to necessitate the accumulation of knowledge bases with "strategic" implications by both individual and group entities. Given the strategic and therefore competitive nature of these knowledge management activities, there surely must be some amount of redundancy of information as well as some duplication of effort.

One remedy that comes to mind is to replace the competitive practice of knowledge management with a cooperative one. This is pub wan in a nutshell. Implementing this will require a significant number of people to volunteer information. Persuading people to do this will require good privacy protections. If the pubwan database is to be populated, of course, a pubwan participant must also be able to specify data cells (fields), rows (records) or tables (files) as public (nonprivate). This may be one of the most vexing technical challenges to implementing pubwan. Other challenges are being the question of whether information wants to be free. The prospects for the pubwan movement are uncertain at best as of this writing.

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