Connection finders - CPsquare

Connection finders

From [[ CPsquare]], the community of practice on communities of practice.

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... part of the technology for communities project,
started off by the authors of [Digital Habitats], Etienne Wenger, Nancy White, and John D. Smith.



Connection finders analyze online activities of individuals to infer interest and expertise through keywords and frequency of use.

Uses in communities of practice

To some communities, this may feel like having "big brother" watching. When a community is large, very dispersed, or just gathering, however, it may be useful to the members themselves to get help finding others with similar interests. Many people fail to create personal profiles or describe all their interests, so connection finder software can ensure that all key interests are reflected in profiles, leading to more effective expertise location. Most connection finder systems permit the individual to review/edit any postings before the content becomes public. Seeing the network structure of the community change over time can also be interesting.Kaye Vivian 13:46, 6 July 2009 (UTC)


Key features

What information the system considers;

Connection finder software may reference any organizational content assets or structured information, including documents, images or recordings already available in a variety of locations. The newer systems also focus on scanning "unstructured" content, business processes, line-of-business solutions, and information exchanges between employees, such as blogs, emails and instant messages. By evaluating all the writings of an individual in the organization, a meaningful personal profile can be built automatically. By analyzing text using artificial intelligence, sources and documents that might not have been categorized together in a traditional taxonomy can be discovered.

The ability to systematically capture, create, manage, access, review, distribute, publish, store and preserve all business content-from ERP/CRM systems, databases, e-mails, documents, file systems and external information systems-and leverage this information to its full potential is the goal of connection finder software. According to KM World, "Structured information only represents 20% of a company's enterprise information assets. The remaining 80% of valuable information is in uncover (sic) form dispersed across the enterprise--in e-mail, document management systems, file systems, instant messaging systems, records management systems, knowledge management systems and other stored documents. This 80% of unstructured information is often overlooked as a key information source for tactical and strategic decision making." [1]

Business content should include best practices and personal expertise, and needs to be linked, referenced and integrated to give a complete picture. A single interface then allows users to access, search, report, collaborate, analyze, track and audit against personal profiles and other enterprise content. Kaye Vivian 14:09, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

What it does with information;

How much control users have over the inferred profile

There are a number of variables governing how much control a user has over their inferred profile, including:

Examples and Related tools

What about examples such as:


Personal tools
CPsquare platforms
This wiki