Information is of greatest value when it contributes to or shapes the commander's decision-making process by providing reasoned insight into future conditions or situations. This may occur as a result of its association with other information already received or when it is considered in the light of experience already possessed by the recipient of the information. Information on its own is a fact or a series of facts that may be of utility to the commander, but when related to other information already known about the operational environment and considered in the light of past experience regarding an adversary, it gives rise to a new set of facts "intelligence." The relating of one set of information to another or the comparing of information against a database of knowledge already held and the drawing of conclusions by an intelligence analyst, is the foundation of the process by which intelligence is produced. Ultimately, intelligence has two critical features that make it different from information. Intelligence allows anticipation or prediction of future situations and circumstances, and it informs decisions by illuminating the differences in available courses of action (COAs).The purposes of joint intelligence that guide the intelligence directorate of a joint staff (J-2) staff and those of supporting organizations are: inform the commander; identify, define, andnominate objectives; support the planning and execution of operations; counter adversary deception and surprise; support friendly deception efforts; and assess the effects of operationson the adversary. Intelligence operations are wide-ranging activities conducted by intelligence staffs and organizations for the purpose of providing commanders and national-level decision makers with relevant, accurate, and timely intelligence. The six categories of intelligence operations are: planning and direction; collection; processing and exploitation; analysis and production; dissemination and integration; and evaluation and feedback.