Barth and Sampson visit the Digital Sandbox

Monday, January 29th, 2007
Today, I received two special visitors to the Digital Sandbox - Steve Barth and Michael Sampson. Steve's a recognized authority on knowledge management and organizational learning, especially the dynamic relationships between individual knowledge workers and their peers, teams, organizations and communities.


I first met Steve at the KM World Conference in San Jose and we immediately hit it off. Once we discovered that we were both passionate about the concept of the KM approach to self organization and personal productivity we knew we wanted to explore our common interests further.

Steve has written extensively about a topic of great interest to me - Personal Knowledge Management (PKM). I really like his approach to KM. Rather than attempt to present why a KM approach will solve the problems of a business, as many failed KM initiatives have done, Steve takes the opposite approach and argues for why KM won't work and then allows the opportunities for success to emerge.

As an eProductivity specialist it was natural for me to bring up the topic of technology and tools for productivity, particularly in the GTD community of practice. We discussed projects and tools have we've both found to work well as well as many that didn't. I shared my plans to write about the intersection of personal KM practices and GTD for personal productivity improvement. Steve invited me to take apart his "Personal Toolkit" column and comment on it; he promised to join the discussion.

With an invitation and an offer like that, I couldn't refuse, so look for a new blog category soon. Here's a link to Steve's personal blog and his soon-to-be-live company web site, Reflected Knowledge.  We enjoyed a lively discussion covering a variety of topics that Steve wrote about in his column for KM World. Steve and I took many notes, which we will soon share.

My other special guest is no stranger to the Digital Sandbox. My friend, colleague, and mentor, Michael Sampson, joined us by Skype for an interactive video call. (BTW Skype on a Mac to Skype on a PC worked great - other conferencing companies must take a close look at what Skype's doing to make collaboration easy.) Anyway, Michael did not disappoint me; he wasted no time in poking fun at the fact that I still don't own a new Mac. Separately, he told me that if I didn't start writing about PKM and GTD, he would. (I've got a Webinar with MindJet on MindMapping coming up at the end of February, after which time I plan to pick up the PKM/GTD topic.)

Our day was full of discussions, so no podcasts today, but I did take lots of notes for future blog topics. Perhaps we'll do a podcast in the near future.

It was truly a delight to visit with Steve and Michael, and I look forward to future collaboration with both of them.

So who will be the next visitor to the Digital Sandbox? I've sent out a few invites; we'll see who shows up next.

Discussion/Comments (4):

Barth and Sampson visit the Digital Sandbox

Ooo, I've been upgraded to a "mentor" now. Wow. Anyhoo, as your mentor, I have to say ... BUY A MAC!


Yes, we did have a neat talk. Thanks for both taking the time.


Posted at 01/30/2007 15:37:38 by Michael Sampson

Barth and Sampson visit the Digital Sandbox

Nice to have such interesting guests stop by.

Posted at 01/30/2007 16:14:23 by Matthew Cornell

re: Barth and Sampson visit the Digital Sandbox

You're welcome, Michael. It's on the list, but I don't want to give in too easily.

Posted at 02/02/2007 8:13:50 by Eric Mack

re: Barth and Sampson visit the Digital Sandbox

The door's open, Matthew. If you're ever out this way...

Posted at 02/02/2007 8:14:25 by Eric Mack

Discussion for this entry is now closed.