[T]here is not one single understanding of what “data cleaning” means. Many times the specifics of “data cleaning” are not described anywhere but reside in the general professional practices, materials, personal histories, and tools of the researchers. That we employ obscuring language like “data cleaning” should be a strong invitation to scrutinize, perhaps reimagine, and
This article is particularly valuable when discussing stereotypical and default modes of collaboration and communication within technical communities. Reagle focuses particularly on gender, but the framework laid out here also has resonance for technical development involving other underrepresented communities.
This heavily theoretical piece provides a vital counterweight to the pressure for “scale” in technological projects, and can give cultural heritage project managers a useful vocabulary for questioning demands to follow tightly regulated software development processes when it is not appropriate for community-driven, humanistic work. Tsing shows that while “scalability” is defined as projects that
I generally prefer to write about big picture subjects for my Learning pieces at Source. But today, let’s start from something small that illuminates the way even simple choices affect what we can represent and the stories we can tell. Let’s talk about the most basic datatype we often build our databases from: Boolean fields.
This article explores prototype theory as an alternative to classical theories of classification. This article points to other, more fine-grained methods for classification than traditional systems with rigid boundaries and hierarchies. While this article does not delve into the technical systems needed to implement prototype theory, it is a very useful foundation for discussions on
Design Justice in Action (2017) rethinks design processes, centers people who are normally marginalized by design, and uses collaborative, creative practices to address the deepest challenges our communities face.
Gender inclusiveness in computing settings is receiving a lot of attention, but one potentially critical factor has mostly been overlooked—software itself. To help close this gap, we recently created GenderMag, a systematic inspection method to enable software practitioners to evaluate their software for issues of gender-inclusiveness. In this paper, we present the first real-world investigation
Critical Technical Practice (CTP) is an approach to identifying and altering philosophical assumptions underlying technical practice. In this paper, we propose CTP as a useful method for developing value-sensitive design, complementing existing ethics-based approaches in HCI. CTP, originally proposed by Phil Agre, tightly binds technology development (as practiced in computer science) with critical reflection (as
This article addresses the importance of systems designers focusing on their designs but also recognizing the importance of critiquing and bettering the systems they create. This requires an understanding of not only the institution in its current state, but its collection history.
This case study discusses the key decisions in adopting standards and technologies for a digitization project, in dialogue with ongoing scholarship around minimal computing and minimal editions, with specific focus on choices that affect long-term preservation and access.