Comps defense: PASSED.

Not really surprising, but it feels great.

Had a lovely lunch with my advisor and a committee member, stopped by Weaver Street Market on the way home for a bottle of cava for later this evening, took a nap snuggled up with my cats, and am now ready to get back to work.

I don’t know what in the world my brain was doing while I was asleep, but I woke up feeling a little depressed and frustrated by this quote which I’m quoting from p. 1949 of: Cronin, Blaise and Lokman I. Meho. 2007. Timelines of creativity a study of intellectual innovators in information science . Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 58 (13) 1948-59.

“scholars in information science tend not to have significant extrafield impact (Cronin & Pearson, 1990).”

Why is this, and how could it be changed? Guess I should read the Cronin and Pearson article and see what else they said…

The other thing in my head was “What exactly is ‘human geography’ and why do I find the papers from that field so intriguing?” Then I thought of the notion of information geography, what that might be, and whether anyone is doing anything they are calling by that name. The Gooracle brings up this from the Department of Geography at University of Washington, which isn’t exactly what I was thinking. But I’m not sure exactly what I was thinking. Not a trail to run down right now, though… I have a couple of other things to do. Just a few.

read it here first.

In my dissertation proposal I offer an initial operating definition of information organization behavior to replace the unacceptable one I’ve ranted about before:

Any activities undertaken by a person or people—uncoordinated or working as a group in an organization or institution—to describe, represent, name, order, structure, categorize or class information objects. Information organization behavior takes place in physical and digital information environments, and across the two. It is usually, but not necessarily, undertaken with the goal of providing easier, faster, and/or better access to information at a future point in time. It is also a method for creating and/or increasing the meaningfulness and usability of information. The set-up or initiation of automatic information organization routines is information organization behavior, while the automated result of such activity is not; it does not require the thought, attention, and decision-making characteristic of information organization behavior.

What have I left out? What is wrong?

current introduction.

This is the current introduction to the literature review I have written in preparation for my comprehensive exams and as a step toward the dissertation proposal. It includes the questions my dissertation will address and an overview of the relationships between topics covered in the review and my questions.

(This monster is currently 138 single-spaced, 11pt type pages. That doesn’t include the bibliography, which shows that I have cited 568 separate sources. I feel somewhat proud of that number, even as I find it horrifying. I am about to begin slashing and burning through this paper, cutting out all the far-too-detailed and only-loosely relevant things I included in the sections as I wrote them separately. That should make it much more reasonable.)

In this review, I discuss some of the literature relevant to my proposed study of how amateur art photographers make decisions about managing the information and artifacts gathered and created in their serious leisure pursuit. This includes examination of the information systems and structures amateur art photographers have developed to support the management of said information and artifacts, how they make sense of the task of managing these, how their current strategies have developed, and whether they have strategies for the long term keeping of their photography-related “stuff.”
Continue reading current introduction.

what has been keeping me busy.

Working on my lit review for comps. It is coming together. I intend to finish by the beginning of August. At the VERY LATEST before classes start. I don’t want to be finishing this up while I’m starting to teach.

I’ve moved from thinking of it as five separate reviews I need to do, and have begun thinking of it as one thing that really needs to be interconnected and coherent. I need for it to be obvious why I think these topics go together and inform what I want to do in my dissertation. So I have 2.75 completed separate reviews that need to be severely revised/shortened and fit into the new structure.

I have finally outlined that structure and written the initial intro to the review, which you may read behind the cut. Consider this also the official unveiling of my Really Final For Real This Time dissertation topic. *eek*

Continue reading what has been keeping me busy.

sketchy jottings on relationships between pim and concepts/categories.

Classical/rule based model seems to apply least. Kwasnik’s (footnotebegin)Kwasnik, Barbara H. 1989. “The influence of context on classificatory behavior.” PhD dissertation, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ.(footnoteend)rules for classification of office documents derived from smaller decisions/considerations more like other approaches.

Exemplar/prototype/similarity based models. Seems to apply a bit. Case’s (footnotebegin)Case, Donald Owen. 1986. Collection and organization of written information by social scientists and humanists: A review and exploratory study. Journal of Information Science 12, no. 3: 97-104.(footnoteend)importance of form, even outside the computer. The importance of topic as classificatory cue. But a good fit? Prototype theory, especially, seems problematic. Is there a prototype document for my “important papers” file? etc. I don’t think so. The only thing really similar among the items is that they’d all be a pain in the arse to replace, especially without the other things in the file. But this isn’t a necessary or sufficient feature for inclusion in the file. Heh, it’s my own ad-hoc (goal derived) subcategory for the canonical example: things to save from my house in the event of a fire. Subcategory, because the overall category also contains laptop and cats.

The theory theory (probably my favorite name ever). Given the findings in PIM about the importance of beliefs about future use for keeping decisions and classification, (footnotebegin)Kwasnik, Barbara H. 1989. How a personal document’s intended use or purpose affects its classification in an office. In Proceedings of the ACM-SIGIR 12th Annual International Conference on Research and Development in Information Retrieval, 207-10. New York, NY: ACM Press. ; Kwasnik, Barbara H. 1991. The importance of factors that are not document attributes in the organisation of personal documents. Journal of Documentation 47, no. 4: 389-98.(footnoteend) this seems to make a lot of sense. The theory theory also seems to fit with the Sense-Making approach, with its focus on individual as expert and theorist.

Goal derived categories (ad hoc). Yes. Related to intended use as mentioned above. “Things I need to work on PIM lit review” is one way I have organized my personal information environment.

Maybe go through all the cues for document classification/placement/dispensation noted in PIM research and think of what sort of categorization is going on behind it?
I suspect I may draw very spurious connections between these concept/category theories and the categorization/organization of artifacts, but I wouldn’t be the first…