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Glossary of terms used in competitive intelligence and knowledge management  

By Vernon Prior

NB: Entries marked with an * are new or modified entries with effect from 12 July 2009

A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M - N - O - P / Q - R - S - T - U - V - W / X / Y/ Z


Machine vision involves the use of sensors (for example tv, x-ray, ir, uv, laser scan, ultrasonics) to receive signals representative of the image of a real scene, coupled with computer systems or other signal-processing devices to interpret the signals received for image content. 

Magazine is a Periodical containing popular, pertinent, or interesting articles, written and illustrated in a less formal or technical manner than that found in a Journal

Mailing list is a system (usually automated) that allows people to send email to one address, whereupon their message is copied and sent to all other subscribers to that mailing list.  It facilitates discussion among people using different kinds of email access.  See also: Electronic mail

Management fad is an innovative concept or technique that is promoted as a new tool for management progress and that rapidly diffuses among early adopters keen to gain a competitive advantage.  When the concept is seen not to fulfil expectations, its use diminishes equally quickly; its popularity usually extending over a period of about five years.  Recent examples include: Quality circles, Total quality management, and Business process reengineering.  See also: Diffusion, Re-engineering

Management reports compare actual results achieved with budgeted forecast levels and thus identify deviations from expected performance.  Operational managers should present the Information in such a way as to encourage further Analysis and corrective action.  See also: Report

Market is a group of people or organisations that share a need for a particular product, and have the willingness and ability to use it and pay for it. 

Market analysis deals with measuring and evaluating actual or potential sales of a product or service.  See also: Market, Psychographics

Market intelligence concerns the attitudes, opinions, behaviour, and needs of individuals and organisations within the context of their economic, environmental, social, and everyday activities.  The emphasis is on consumers product, price, place, promotion.  See also: Business intelligence, Competitive intelligence, Demography, Informetrics, Intelligence, Market, Marketing research, Psychographics, Sample

Market research, see Marketing research

Market segmentation is the process of dividing the Market into smaller groups that share one or more characteristics.  See also: Classify, Demography

Market share is that proportion (per cent) of the total Market that is using a particular organisation's product.  Markets may be defined as: Duopoly, Monopoly, Niche, Oligopoly, Premium, or Unstable market

Marketing is the management process responsible for identifying, anticipating, and satisfying consumers' requirements profitably.  See also: Customer relationship management, Market, Value chain analysis

Marketing information system is one designed to collect and exploit Information concerning existing and potential clients.  See also: Market intelligence, Psychographics

Marketing mix usually refers to a selected combination of promotion, place, price, and product.  See also: Target market

Marketing research is the study of methods of selling and promoting a product or service; or gathering Information that will support a marketing campaign (such as qualitative and quantitative Data concerning customer preferences and behaviour).  See also: Market intelligence

Mechatronics is the fusion of the technologies of electronics and mechanics.  Examples include numerically controlled machine tools, industrial Robots, digital clocks, and electronic calculators.  See also: Technological fusion

Mega-portal is increasingly being applied to sites that once were referred to as portals, mainly because of the widespread adoption of the term Portal for almost any site.   

Meme is an element of a culture or system of behaviour that is passed from one individual to another by non-genetic means; or, more simply, that which is passed on by imitation.  See also: Corporate culture, Educational technology, Explicit knowledge, Knowledge, Learning organisation, Tacit knowledge

Memeplex is a group of memes passed on together, for example, religions, political idealogies, or other belief systems.  See also: Meme

Memetic engineering refers to the manipulation of memes, as in advertising, education, or psychotherapy.  See also: Meme

*Metadata is Information (in the form of a Metatag) that describes an internet document and facilitates its retrieval. It is very similar to a Bibliographic reference, but - where present - is often more extensive, and may include author, title, affiliation, sponsor, Abstract, keywords, language, publisher, date published, contact details, Classification scheme, and so on; probably the most useful being keywords.  See also: Content management, Document, Enrichment, Folksonomy, Indexing, Internet, Keyword, Knowledge management, Ontology, Taxonomy, Thesaurus, Topic maps

Meta-indexes permit searches using several search engines simultaneously through the medium of one search request. Individual results are presented as a single list.  See also: Search engine

Metasearch engine is a Search engine that simultaneously submits a search query to a number of other search engines and produces results that may be manipulated in some way for the benefit of the searcher.   

Metatag, see Metadata

Micro business is a very small business employing fewer than five people. 

*Mind maps (a concept devised by Tony Buzan) are a means of representing topics, ideas, projects, tasks, and similar items in a visual format, similar in some ways to Semantic networks but with connections usually extending radially from a central concept or theme.  The various elements (including words, images, numbers, and colours) are arranged both informally and intuitively according to the relative importance of the concepts involved.  Mind maps may be used for After action reviews, aiding recall, Brainstorming, Briefing and Debriefing, clarifying information, creative thinking, decision making, learning, organising ideas, Planning, problem solving, revising, summarising, and taking notes.  See also: Cognitive science, Content management, Creativity, Knowledge creation, Knowledge management, Knowledge map, Ontology, Taxonomy, Thesaurus, Topic maps, Visualisation. 

Mindset is a state of mind that affects an individual's attitude to events and ability to make decisions.  It is derived from that person's background, culture, education, upbringing, religious beliefs, and so on.  A person's mindset may also be affected by conventional or received wisdom, Corporate culture, and by the outcome of similar or related events in the past.  See also: Competency modelling, Knowledge, Meme

Misinformation is erroneous Information that is not intended to deceive; it may result from ignorance.  See also: Disinformation

Mission statement defines the business in which a company competes, the company's objectives, and the approach it will take to reach those objectives.  See also: Corporate culture, Strategy, Vision statement

Mociology is the study of the effects of mobile information technologies on the development, structure, and functioning of human society.  See also: Information technology

Modelling is a technique used to assist in decision-making by producing probable results based on combinations of assumptions and what if questions. 

Modem (modulator-demodulator) is a device for converting Data to sound signals, and vice-versa, for transmission over telecommunications networks.   

Monopoly market is one in which the leading company has at least 73.9% of the Market.  See also: Market share

*Multimedia refers to an interactive system that integrates text, sound, and video.  Typical applications are business presentations, training and education, databases, and electronic correspondence.  See also: Content management, Database, Knowledge management

Multipoint competition explores the implications of a situation in which diversified companies compete against each other in several markets.  See also: Market

Multi-user dimension (MUD) is a multi-user simulation environment in which users can create documents with which others can interact, thus allowing a World to be built gradually and collectively.  It is often referred to as a Dungeon.  See also: Document.



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