Information technology … is a misnomer

In responding to Rees Morrison’s blog post “Information technology … is a misnomer” or seriously under-inclusive. I see the following situation. He quotes Michael Schrage as saying “The biggest impact of technology is not on information management, it’s on people management, it’s on relationship management, it’s on process management, it’s on systems management”.

Programming has failed to construct adequate structures and techniques to work with information inside a computer program. IT techniques really just work with data, rather than working with information. This is the core of the problem. With adequate information oriented approaches programmers could write programs that would help manage relationships, flow information, and respond to process changes. Without information approaches, programmers can not address these issues well.

Handling information flow would be enhanced by having the program being able to understand the information that is flowing. Responding to process changes would be enhanced by having information about the processes inside the program. For example the importance, meaning, priority,  and context of the process are all forms of valuable information for responding the process changes. These could all be put into code if we had the proper information oriented techniques to do so. Relationships require not only knowledge representation of the relationships but a relevant computer understandable description of the people being related. Information inside a program would facilitate both of these.

 

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