On your Mark, Get Ready.......

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joseph....@gmail.com

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May 28, 2006, 11:59:32 PM5/28/06
to User Research Theory Study Group Planning
Sorry to make my first post so bossy, but may I suggest we make a final
decision on the book, time period, method of discussion, etc? There
seems to be a lot of indecision and politeness which may stall the
group before it starts. I'm all for getting started reading, reacting
and building a useful community rather than trying to develop a
consensus through asychronous, semi-anonymous, group postings.

It seems like the early favorite for the book is:

The Interpretation of culture by Clifford Geertz

As for pace:

~120 pages a week? (or whatever the nearest chapter breakdown is?)

Discussion:

It's not sexy, but serial postings on the Google Groups page, may be
the best thing to start with.

Again, this is just an excited contributor making a suggestion, if
there are other ideas I'm all for them. Steve, As the founder of the
group perhaps you could make the final call on this.

I look forward to the development of the group,

Joe Flaherty

Mick Khoo

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May 29, 2006, 12:55:01 PM5/29/06
to User Research Theory Study Group Planning
I'd recommend (or rather re-recommend, given that they were my
suggestions in the first place) that we start with Geertz's essay on
thick description, as this available on the Web (e.g. from
http://www.stanford.edu/~davidf/qualitative151/Reader.htm).

There's other contextualizing pieces also on the Web that we could use
to read around Geertz. I'll try and round some up over the next few
days.

[Note that the Geertz book is a collection of essays, and so lacks the
narrative arc you might find in a monograph. You probably wouldn't
want to read it all the way through - you might get pretty sick of
Geertz and his prose style by then ;)]

I think that there's enough in the Geertz essay to carry us forward
for at least a couple of weeks, and give us time to order books and
figure out what we might want to do next. And hopefully the question
of "What do we want to do?" will emerge a bit from this first reading
and discussion.

Mick.


--
===========
=mjkhoo.info=
===========

Steve Portigal

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May 29, 2006, 1:25:26 PM5/29/06
to joseph....@gmail.com, User Research Theory Study Group Planning
joseph....@gmail.com wrote:
>
>Sorry to make my first post so bossy, but may I suggest we make a final
>decision on the book, time period, method of discussion, etc? There
>seems to be a lot of indecision and politeness which may stall the
>group before it starts.

My last post included the statement "Let's see what discussion
ensues over the long weekend." Sorry if this wasn't clear enough, but
I was in fact setting a point in time for some next step decisions. I
think we're all agreed in wanting to move forward, and I think
"facilitating the group" needn't be misconstrued as being "bossy"!

Steve Portigal -- http://www.portigal.com
blog -- http://chittahchattah.blogspot.com

sony-youth

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May 29, 2006, 7:13:49 PM5/29/06
to User Research Theory Study Group Planning
I agree that we should get things moving as quickly as possible. I'm
afraid that if we wait too long we will loose momentum. I can't say
how delighted I was when I saw the original post - finally social
theory in HCI: we know we should think of the users - but HOW, but
WHAT? I think a solid reading list is good, and a reading discussion
group good too, but I also side with a wiki. I think for many, a
digest of theories and criticisms written by ourselves from a HCI
standpoint would be useful and could be developed wiki-like.

>From a HCI standpoint I mean that theory can be inaccessible and
esoteric. It can be hard to know how theory relates to the practical
work of a field, especially for people not coming from the social
sciences. It would also serve to evangelise theory and hold it up as
practical and useful in HCI practice.

As may be clear also, I don't just mean theories of ethnographic
practice but wider social theory ... I want to see what a post-feminist
actor-network interface looks like!

Leisa Reichelt

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May 29, 2006, 7:23:12 PM5/29/06
to User Research Theory Study Group Planning
I also agree, let's not spend too much time talking without getting stuck into it!

To that end, I've printed out the Geertz chapter that Mick suggested and I'm going to try to get through that in the next week.

Perhaps if others want to do that, we can chat about that whilst we work out the rest of the modus operandi, reading list etc.?

it looks like an interesting read!

<snip from Mick>

I'd recommend (or rather re-recommend, given that they were my
suggestions in the first place) that we start with Geertz's essay on
thick description, as this available on the Web (e.g. from
http://www.stanford.edu/~davidf/qualitative151/Reader.htm).
</snip>

Leisa Reichelt
User Experience Architect

leisa.r...@gmail.com
www.disambiguity.com

sony-youth

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May 30, 2006, 10:59:09 AM5/30/06
to User Research Theory Study Group Planning
agreed - printing out and reading Thick Description now. anybody want
to suggest a date and format for getting back? as Leisa says we can
discuss the rest of the "modus operandi" in the mean time.

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