Jun 11, 2009

weblog as PIM tool

Efimova, L. (2009). Weblog as a personal thinking space. Forthcoming in: HT’09: Proceedings of the twentieth ACM conference on hypertext and hypermedia, June 2009. New York: ACM:
"Using weblogs as a knowledge base, and then as an instrument to support PhD work, creates synergies, as the effort that goes into creating and organising entries [posts] later pays off by providing more ways for retrieval, and a better quality of the material to be reused. In turn, the experience of reuse or unexpected discoveries that older posts bring stimulates putting more effort in creating new entries." (p. 8)
Resulting from her own practice to a finished dissertation, using an autoethnography approach, Lilia presents a detailed account of that process, summarized in a table, showing "how different stages of idea development [during the PhD process] are supported by the activities around the weblog content."

Another strong point is made concerning the role of paper in knowledge work, and although I only saw the paper today, was glad to see that it reasons with the preliminary findings of the data I've been collecting and the entry that I've made previously, that it reasons with my own use of blogs for supporting research, and also for advocating the use of blogs instead of pages for eliciting the on going process of doctoral research work. Doing it requires "requires the filtering [of] large amounts of information, making sense of it, and connecting the different bits and pieces to come up with new ideas. In this process, physical and digital artefacts play an important role" (Efimova, 2009, p. 2).

The blog allows also for the integration of permanent captures of temporary information in that sense the blog works like a canvas that can display scrapnotes in other contexts extending their use for the weaving of new knowledge. But like she says in the paper,
"The connection between the functionalities of weblog technologies and their uses for personal information management needs further examination. The similarity between the roles my weblog plays in supporting my work and those of paper collections in other studies indicate a need to explore the affordances of weblog technologies from PIM perspective and possibilities of learning from blogging when designing other tools, in particularly those that support managing information scraps that do not fit current tools" (p. 9)

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