Tuesday, September 07, 2004

In the beginning...

We've typically assumed that the document life cycle begins with an individual working on something until it is good enough to be shared and to get meaningful feedback. How is this different from an email? Is it just a matter of degree? Of volume? Of completeness?

What exactly is a document?

1 Comments:

Blogger Guy said...

I think a prime consideration is authorship, and the subsequent ownership that implies. An email, meaningful or not, has someone's name on it from the get-go. You could make a less persuasive case that MS-WORD docs do too, what with metadata (intentional and otherwise) associated with them.

Hey, email wears its lifecycle right on its sleeve, like an autobiography! Date/time stamps, attachments, hyperlinks, parties to, etc ... It's automagic.

Documents do not do this typically.

It appears we can see the desire for this sort of thing coming closer to realization in products like the RMS server:

http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/technologies/rightsmgmt/default.mspx

The ability to exert control over something after it has been digitized and shared (even once) seems intuitively to me like it might be a fool's errand.

BUT ... if it truly can be made to work, wow - that's powerful!

4:08 PM  

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