The evidence is substantial that the amount of information that is received impacts strategies for processing information and making choices, the time spent in decision making, and decision accuracy/quality. The relation between increasing information and improved decision making is not however linear. Rather the relation is an inverted U, that is decision making improves as more information is received, until an inflection point is reached where no impovement occurs and then more information creates an overload and decision making performance declines. Decision support systems should help manage information load.
The impact of information quantity does vary based on cognitive capabilities, but the range of capabilities among managers is narrow compared with the general population. So in our managerial DSS user interface designs we should be able to anticipate load problems and reduce them.
Why am I blogging about information load today? Because I'm inundated by information on the Web and the volume is increasing. How can we manage information load better? Take a quick look at DSSResources.com or www.b-eye-network.com. So much information!!!! No one can be expected to read it all. So we creates topics and categories, and "best of the best" lists, to organize and manage information. And we still need people involved to do this well. The hope has been that people who post information will tag it and that the Web can be self-organizing through search engines and other "meta" aggregation tools. Perhaps ... but I still think knowledge repositories created by experts in a topic area will be the best sources of information and the best way to manage information load. I need to do more on my sites ... managing information is an ongoing struggle and new technologies provide me new tools, but finding the time to use them is however a challenge.
So I'll work on improving the categorization, topics, tags and navigation of DSSResources.com, PlanningSkills.com and DecisionAutomation.com. I'm also planning to expand the information content at the same time. This is a new year's resolution made early.
This blog contributes to the information load ... I put this posting in a new category called Decision Support and I tried to write an informative title.
Posted November 29, 2007 9:27 AM
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