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[Xmca-l] Re: Reflective Discourse on XMCA



I have been deeply engaged with the topic of boundary objects and notions
of orientation.
Here attached is a response.
It is rather long and this is why it is sent as an attachment.
I want to thank everyone for our shared voices.

On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 9:04 AM, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no>
wrote:

> Huw, thanks a lot! Your experiences is very valuable for what I am looking
> at now, really. I'll definitively keep you posted on what I get up to.
>
> Alfredo
> ________________________________________
> From: xmca-l-bounces+a.g.jornet=iped.uio.no@mailman.ucsd.edu
> <xmca-l-bounces+a.g.jornet=iped.uio.no@mailman.ucsd.edu> on behalf of Huw
> Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com>
> Sent: 14 October 2015 17:50
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Reflective Discourse on XMCA
>
> Alfredo,
>
> Regarding "how the situated work taking place during a shift of
> (computational) paradigm would differ", generalising from my experience I
> usually see a breakdown in communication and an approach is taken in which
> the program is inched forward, perhaps akin to tacking to a coastline.
>
> What was a reasonable strategy for a quick solution transforms over time
> into an abuse of the language, such as 20 files consisting of nested if
> statements that are several hundred lines long used to parse text files.
>
> Depending upon the experience, common trigger scenarios might be:
>
> Object oriented programming.
> Inversion of control (using frameworks)
> Multithreaded programming.
> Functional programming
>
> But even when the language constructs are well known there can be
> disagreements concerning other basic representational and orientational
> constructs, such as what an event is, whether an input is interior or
> exterior to an encapsulation, whether value objects or identity objects are
> used, and whether the problem domain is actually articulated in the
> software.
>
> Regarding gesture, I would say that gestures index orientation mediated by
> conscious goals.  So I would agree that gesture, rather than mere wording,
> helps to orient.  But I would tend to disagree that gesture is
> 'foundational'.  For me, orientation is king.  It would be interesting to
> see if you make something else of it.
>
> Best,
> Huw
>
>
> On 14 October 2015 at 15:44, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no>
> wrote:
>
> > Huw,
> > thanks for the reflection, it brings a very interesting distinction. The
> > software developers case that I mentioned is more on the contained sense
> of
> > "unknown", as you mentioned, not involving a shift of computing paradigm.
> > Yet I could observe lots of work performed by the developers for them to
> be
> > able to do intelligible enough reference to the feature thereby being
> > designed. This work, which I glossed as "naming", included not just
> > (technical, specialized) names already familiar to them, but also
> drawings,
> > gesturing, and performance. So, the words were not enough, and there was
> > some form of imagination going on. So the distinction you introduced
> makes
> > me wonder how the situated work taking place during a shift of
> > (computational) paradigm would differ with respect to the one that I am
> > observing, that is, involving only a "minor" innovation.
> >
> > Henry's connection with the moving from verb to noun that we reported
> with
> > respect to boundary objects is interesting here because it brings
> attention
> > to objects (materials) and their relation to our sensitivities (bodies).
> I
> > am thinking if this connection might be of help to understand the
> > differences between the work that minor innovations involve and the work
> of
> > producing major paradigm shifts. Perhaps, more than a shift in the kind
> of
> > situated social interactions that we observe, we should (again) attend to
> > Latour's discussion on inter-objectivity, and see how the
> > material-historical arrangements in the setting set the conditions for
> > those shifts to occur. At the level of interaction, I can imagine (!)
> that
> > both going through a minor innovation and going through a major shift
> > involve some movement from not being aware of a possibility to orienting
> > towards that very possibility. Studying differences there would be
> > interesting. But I guess that the key lies in the prior historical
> > conditions for the innovation/shift to emerge. Imagination may, in this
> > account, be a form of perceiving things that, to be so perceived, need to
> > lend themselves to those perceptions and apprehensions. If imagination
> > takes place first as performative work, and not as mental operation
> alone,
> > it needs to rely upon the possibilities of manipulation that the
> materials
> > offer. And those possibilities, of course, include possibilities of
> naming,
> > of using words.
> >
> > Alfredo
> > ________________________________________
> > From: xmca-l-bounces+a.g.jornet=iped.uio.no@mailman.ucsd.edu
> > <xmca-l-bounces+a.g.jornet=iped.uio.no@mailman.ucsd.edu> on behalf of
> > HENRY SHONERD <hshonerd@gmail.com>
> > Sent: 14 October 2015 01:38
> > To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Reflective Discourse on XMCA
> >
> > Do I recall (and understand) correctly Alfredo’s and Rod’s article (on
> > boundary objects and building museum spaces) that gesture preceded
> naming?
> > I mean that the boundary object started as collaborative/coordinated
> > movement. It was a perfomance before it was a thing that could be named.
> A
> > verb before it was a noun. And does this have anything to do with Huw’s
> > conjecture about a continuum of kinds of projects, at one end those that
> > replicate (with minimal creativity) and, at the other,  those that “get
> > outside the box”? Academic discourse tends to be very nouny, Latinate,
> > loaded with bound morphemes. Such discourse serves important purposes
> when
> > operating on the generalization and abstraction side of things, amongst
> the
> > experts. But boundary objects (as observed by Alfredo and Rod) assume the
> > project members are strangers to one another’s way of generalizing and
> > abstracting. Could gesture then be “rising to the concrete” in discourse
> > generally? That would provide nice praxis.
> >
> > Respectfully,
> > Henry
> >
> > > On Oct 13, 2015, at 4:45 PM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com>
> > wrote:
> > >
> > > Alfredo,
> > >
> > > I suspect the quality of the unknown thing here would need
> qualification.
> > > Experienced practitioners in software are often dealing with
> > to-be-designed
> > > artefacts, although these mostly fall into a more minor category of
> > things
> > > conforming to well-known conceptions or abstractions, hence they are
> > > usually only unknown in a rather contained sense (a bit like roughly
> > > knowing what kind of model you need to build out of lego).
> > >
> > > Contrary to this, computing problems entailing a new computational
> > paradigm
> > > would certainly throw such programmers into a genuine unknown (the
> > dawning
> > > realisation that one is working with a different kind of kit).  Also,
> > with
> > > respect to requirements, the real unknowns are usually the soft
> > > requirements on agreeing what the problem is in the first place, which
> > will
> > > be largely governed by the social situation of said programmers, i.e.
> > being
> > > paid to get something built.
> > >
> > > Naming is very important in software in order to try to communicate
> > > functional intent, hence practitioners would no doubt be comfortable
> > > establishing agreement about naming before moving on.  Nonetheless you
> > may
> > > well be identifying some form of design mediation at play too.
> > >
> > > Best,
> > > Huw
> > >
> > > On 13 October 2015 at 23:08, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no>
> > wrote:
> > >
> > >> Henry, all,
> > >>
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> I am at this moment going through a video database on design work in a
> > >> software development company, and, observing a discussion between two
> > >> developers who talk about features of the software that are not yet
> > >> developed, but which could be, ??the insight came upon me that, to
> > possibly
> > >> create anything together (and there is no other way to do it since one
> > >> alone has not the tools/competence to do it), they had to name it. So,
> > the
> > >> developers were talking about something that does not yet exist but
> > which
> > >> nonetheless needs to be referred to in order for them to even begin
> > working
> > >> on it. And naming something that does not yet exits does not happen
> > >> immediately, because they do not have a name for it. Naming it takes
> > time
> > >> and space, that is, work. So, I think the notion of "displacement"
> that
> > you
> > >> mention, if it captures this work that talking does to the imagining,
> > very
> > >> relevant to what I am witnessing in my data. And, given the salience
> of
> > >> "place making" in the thread, the term "disPLACEment" may be timely
> > here.
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> Alfredo
> > >>
> > >> ________________________________
> > >> From: HENRY SHONERD <hshonerd@gmail.com>
> > >> Sent: 13 October 2015 23:34
> > >> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > >> Cc: Alfredo Jornet Gil; Rolf Steier; Geoffrey C. Bowker
> > >> Subject: Re: [Xmca-l] Re: Reflective Discourse on XMCA
> > >>
> > >> Mike,
> > >> In your original post on Oct 10, you  suggested that we might "...come
> > up
> > >> with a deeper understanding of the interlocking issues involved". As
> you
> > >> say, each chatter will have their own response to that. Mine is that I
> > can
> > >> relate the three issues to displacement, which is arguably the most
> > >> important property of language as a semiotic system. It is the ability
> > of
> > >> with language to refer to and construe aspects of the world removed in
> > time
> > >> and place (from the here and now) and to the "make believe"
> > ("irrealis").
> > >> I was reminded of this on re-reading an article by Bruno Latour on
> > >> Interobjectivity that Greg Thompson posted back on Aug 18. Most
> people,
> > if
> > >> asked, think of language primarily as something for communication.
> > Animals
> > >> communicate, but, as far as we know, do not displace. (Though It might
> > be
> > >> argued that animals do a better job of communicating than people.!) I
> > would
> > >> like to emphasize the importance of the temporal domain, as well as
> the
> > >> spatial, with displacement.
> > >>
> > >> Henry
> > >>
> > >>
> >
> >
> >
> >
>
>

Attachment: OCTOBER 10 2015 PURSS LARRY THE CHARACTER OF BOUNDARY OBJECTS 1.docx
Description: MS-Word 2007 document