Updated: 6/23/2005; 11:51:24 AM.


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  Friday, May 02, 2003

  BlogTalk paper: multiple-choice questions responses go on-lne

I added multiple-choice questions responses to the data page. It took me sometime to figure out how to do that. I didn't want to do Excel->HTML, because such a generated code looks scary. So I found a solution: generating graphs together with tables.

This whole thing still needs polishing, but at least it's there.

Lessons learnt:

  • Posting progress of the study on-line takes quite a lot of time, so the progress itself is slower. From another side I've got many valuable comments and questions on the bits I posted, so this can prevent me from taking "wrong paths" while writing.
  • I should use proper tool next time, something with one-click HTML generation.
  • Writing long stories in Radio is awful: slow and not convenient at all. Using several outlines could be much better. This is something I will do after finishing writing: turning paper-related stores into outlines.
More on: BlogTalk paper 

  Discovering research connections

Sebastian Fiedler posts Shaping a personal learning domain [related: The happy ground for conversations] and I find the whole bunch of connections with the earlier version of my PhD research (see comments).

Funny. By reading his weblog I knew that our thinking was close, but it wasn't clear where exactly as we don't really use weblogs to document our research.

Just in case if you are curious, there are some raw descriptions of my PhD research "Supporting knowledge worker at work": 1/2 page .doc and slides. Please let me know if you see any connections with your own work. And I'll try to post more on it in the future.


  Broken code

Coming to the previous entry (posted on purpose ;): it seems that most bloggers belong to the [base "]knowledge seekers[per thou] and [base "]knowledge sharers[per thou] tribes. [Mathemagenic]

It takes someone quoting you to see that you send around broken code (I subscribed to my RSS, but somehow it's ok in Radio). I should be more careful with copy-paste from Word. Thanks to Albert Delgado it's fixed now.

  BlogTalk paper: personal characteristics that support blogging

Responses to the Question 7. Which personal characteristics support blogging?

Somehow I've got into a funny style with this one :) So, the collective portrait of bloggers.


  • have passionate curiosity and eager to discover new things
  • like, feel easy, have a habit or want to improve writing
  • care about passing ideas or "paying back" to their community
  • are not afraid to expose ideas at the early stage
  • have a desire to collect, organise and connect ideas
  • like explaining
  • believe that articulation helps understanding
  • look for a feedback and critical discussion
  • like conversations
  • believe that sharing and open discussion are important to craft understanding, to progress and to create a better world
  • like networking
  • don't mind or even want exposure

Some bloggers

  • are introverts
  • actively looking for new contacts
  • "have a bad memory"
  • believe that "if you do't express and talk you won't reach out"
  • are educators with "a desire to connect with the learners in as many authentic ways as possible"
  • "hate secrets and lack of openness"

My conclusions in brief:

Coming to the previous entry (posted on purpose ;): it seems that most bloggers belong to the "knowledge seekers" and "knowledge sharers" tribes.

More on: BlogTalk paper 

  The knowledge archetypes

Communicating to knowledge workers by J. Steffen suggests that suggests that employees "can broadly be divided into four archetypes which describe their relationship with knowlegde":

  • The Knowledge Seeker (e.g. R&D, marketing) - "motivated by the job itself; focuses on the big picture; finds detail tedious"
  • The Knowledge Sharer (e.g. manager, trainer) - "regards knowledge as a common currency; distinguishes between stewardship and ownership of knowledge; more interested in transfer than retention of knowledge"
  • The Knowledge Keeper (e.g. finance, personnel) - "screens knowledge selectively; ascribes equal importance to the retention and transfer of knowledge; forms strategic alliances"
  • The Knowledge Avoider - "distinguishes between official and unofficial knowledge; regards official knowledge as inherently suspect; considers knowledge-sharing a lure to entrap staff into unnecessary activities"

This article provides nice framework to look at the attitudes of employees to knowledge and links it to their function. It's not research-based, but still useful (at work we refer to it a lot discussing knowledge workers). It also provokes follow-up questions like "what is more important function or personality type in defining those archetypes?"

More on: knowledge networker 

  BlogTalk paper: cases of writing/not writing to a weblog

Responses to the Question 8. Which situations prompt you to write to weblog?

I found a bit difficult to structure the responses to this question… At the end I decided to distinguish between what is blogged and why people do it. I don't feel that differentiating between bloggers and would be bloggers adds value here, so I don't do it.

  • What is blogged
    • Links
    • News
    • Events (future, current and past)
    • Ideas and reflection
    • Experiences and progress (personal or work-related)
    • Opinions
    • Emotions
    • Politics
    • Funny things
    • Reading, movies, friends…
    • Feedback on RSS item
    • Comments
  • Why
    • Something to keep for myself
    • Something to share with others
    • Something to promote
    • Feeling urge to comment
    • Discovering an opportunity to connect different pieces/ideas, to generalise from examples
    • Clarifying ideas or concepts, articulating ideas to understand them
    • Starting a conversation, looking for a feedback
    • Instead of mailing to many, to let them come in their own time
    • Replacing bookmarks
    • As part of the daily routine
    • Being bored

Responses to the Question 9. [Bloggers only] In which situations would you like to write to your weblog, but are not able to? Why?

Here I distinguish between situations where someone is not able to blog or makes a choice as well as mentioned solutions for these problems.

  • Ability
    • No computer/no connection (walking, on the move, during a meeting, vacation…)
    • Lack of time
    • Occasional server problem
    • Being drunk
    • Not being able to: use moblogging, type things with mobile phone keys, record and post voice
  • Choices
    • Confidentiality (business)
    • Ethics and privacy (not sharing things related to other people, disclosing names or details of personal discussions)
    • During work time/ "professional" subjects (for personal weblogs)
    • "Private" subjects (for professional weblogs)
    • Not being 100% open because others (friends/colleagues) can read it or because it's indexed forever
    • Not posting because there is still need for something to sell to earn money
    • Not blogging technical things because audience is not technical enough
  • Solutions
    • Mobile blogging
    • Private entries

My conclusions in brief:

I perceive these two questions mainly as support to other questions. They provide an overview of blogging motivation at micro-level: in what cases a blogger makes choice to write or not to write and why. Next to it, question 9 describes some of the conditions that required for blogging (e.g. time or access to the tools).

I believe that these summaries could be used to assess if blogging is likely to fit someone's circumstances and life/working stile.

More on: BlogTalk paper context 

  'Weblogs simply provide the framework, as haiku imposes order on words'

Short break from the BlogTalk paper.

Meg Hourihan:

Weblogs simply provide the framework, as haiku imposes order on words. The structure of the documents we're creating enable us to build our social networks on top of it -- the distributed conversations, the blog-rolling lists, and the friendships that begin online and are solidified over a "bloggers dinner" in the real world.

More on: blogs 

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© Copyright 2002-2005 Lilia Efimova.

This weblog is my learning diary. Sometimes I write about things related to my work, but the views expressed here are personal and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

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