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The Future of Personal Information Management, Part 1 by William Jones

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CHAPTER 1

A New Age of Information

Information. We are overloaded and overwhelmed by it and yet we can’t seem to get enough of it.

But what is information? This question has been a repeated topic of discussion1. Buckland, M. (1991), after an analysis of the many senses in which the word is used, concluded that “we are unable to say confidently of anything that it could not be information” (p. 256).

Indeed, the efforts people make to understand their world are usefully characterized as acts of information processing2. According to this view, our intelligence comes from our ability to process the raw data received through our senses into concepts, patterns, and implications. Everything “out there” that we are able to perceive is potential information. ...

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