Expert Seeker is a computer program of the knowledge- management-system (KMS) type that falls within the category of expertise-locator systems. The main goal of the KMS system implemented by Expert Seeker is to organize and distribute knowledge of who are the domain experts within and without a given institution, company, or other organization. The intent in developing this KMS was to enable the re-use of organizational knowledge and provide a methodology for querying existing information (including structured, semistructured, and unstructured information) in a way that could help identify organizational experts. More specifically, Expert Seeker was developed to make it possible, by use of an intranet, to do any or all of the following:

  • Assist an employee in identifying who has the skills needed for specific projects and to determine whether the experts so identified are available.
  • Assist managers in identifying employees who may need training opportunities.
  • Assist managers in determining what expertise is lost when employees retire or otherwise leave.
  • Facilitate the development of new ways of identifying opportunities for innovation and minimization of duplicated efforts.
  • Assist employees in achieving competitive advantages through the application of knowledge-management concepts and related systems.
  • Assist external organizations in requesting speakers for specific engagements or determining from whom they might be able to request help via electronic mail.
  • Help foster an environment of collaboration for rapid development in today's environment, in which it is increasingly necessary to assemble teams of experts from government, universities, research laboratories, and industries, to quickly solve problems anytime, anywhere.
  • Make experts more visible.
  • Provide a central repository of information about employees, including information that, heretofore, has typically not been captured by the human-resources systems (e.g., information about past projects, patents, or hobbies).
  • Unify myriad collections of data into Web-enabled repository that could easily be searched for relevant data.

This program was written by Irma Becerra Fernandez of Florida International University for Kennedy Space Center. For further information, contact the Kennedy Commercial Technology Office at (321) 867-8130. KSC-12498.

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the December, 2003 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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