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[Xmca-l] Re: Reflective Discourse on XMCA

I know I’m gonna like what you sent! The little I know of Lewin makes me think he is a big deal in both socio-cultural circles and neurological circles as well. Did Luria and Lewin know each other? Hmm…

> On Oct 16, 2015, at 2:36 PM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Henry,
> You might like Kurt Lewin's 1931 paper, "The Conflict Between Aristotelian
> and Galileian Modes of Thought in Contemporary Psychology".
> First link I found here
> <https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=6&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CD8QFjAFahUKEwii9-uC68fIAhXFwxQKHVk6Dek&url=http%3A%2F%2Fsasico.com.br%2Fpsico%2Fwp-content%2Fimages%2F2009%2F03%2F002-aristoteles-x-galileu1.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF9QwtaANY3mJW0mSJghAmAYE92kw&sig2=7hJc222nnSALDf-xCwF93Q&bvm=bv.105454873,d.d24>
> .
> Best,
> Huw
> On 16 October 2015 at 20:56, HENRY SHONERD <hshonerd@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Larry,
>> I also had read your post, but didn’t realize how generative your gravity
>> metaphor was! I was more focused on what you said about play mimesis and
>> affordances. After reading Alfredo’s response to your post, I got the
>> following from Wikipedia’s “gravity”:
>> "Gravity is most accurately described by the general theory of relativity <
>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_theory_of_relativity> (proposed by
>> Albert Einstein <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Einstein> in 1915)
>> which describes gravity, not as a force, but as a consequence of the
>> curvature of spacetime <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spacetime> caused
>> by the uneven distribution of mass/energy; and resulting in time dilation <
>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_dilation>, where time lapses more
>> slowly in strong gravitation.”
>> then further on:
>> “...gravity has a negligible influence on the behavior of sub-atomic
>> particles, and plays no role in determining the internal properties of
>> everyday matter (but see quantum gravity <
>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_gravity>). On the other hand,
>> gravity is the dominant force at the macroscopic scale <
>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macroscopic_scale>”.
>> Out on a limb, it seems to me that psychology and sociology parallel the
>> micro/macro distinction in physics. And note the problems of reconciling
>> relativity theory of Einstein with probabalistic quantum theory. In other
>> words, physics seems to have had the same problems as social science in
>> reconciling the micro and macro.
>> Henry
>>> On Oct 16, 2015, at 12:28 PM, Alfredo Jornet Gil <a.j.gil@iped.uio.no>
>> wrote:
>>> Larry, I just read your notes and wanted to thank you. There are so many
>> interesting things that I would not know how to begin addressing them
>> (though I hope I'll get the chance soon). But I wanted to let you know that
>> I thoroughly enjoyed the way you move us through a sort of inter-stelar
>> travel in your text. I really like the way you treat different traditions
>> of thinking as gravitational fields, where notions such as "objects" make
>> sense only as part of a larger arrangement of concepts and
>> ideas/discourses. The travel you describe certainly touches into some of
>> what we (or at least I) experience when we move across literatures to try
>> to achieve coherent and pragmatically productive ways of approaching the
>> study of human practices. And it also helped me to better see and
>> appreciate (at least fragments of) what others had contributed in prior
>> discussions in the thread. So, thanks for that!
>>> 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
>> Larry Purss <lpscholar2@gmail.com>
>>> Sent: 14 October 2015 18:55
>>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>>> Subject: [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