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Making sense of sensemaking
 

Making sense of sensemaking

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position paper for CHI workshop

position paper for CHI workshop

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    Making sense of sensemaking Making sense of sensemaking Presentation Transcript

    • Making Sense of Sensemaking John C. Thomas Research Staff Member IBM T. J. Watson Research Center Sensemaking Workshop: CHI 2005 Portland, Oregon April 3-4, 2005
    • History: Some Relevant Work
      • Hobbits-Orcs: people operating at two levels ? – solving and sensemaking; or part of a single loop?
      • Psychology of Aging: education decreases variance
      • “ Subjects” are active sensemakers: S-R Frame Problem (Brad) verbal learning, visual masking
      • Query By Example: did well at translating, not SM
      • Psychology of Design
      • Rational-Emotive Therapy: 2 year fellowship
      • NYNEX: Led AI Lab; Proposal to make NYNEX a “Learning Organization.”
      • Business Uses of Stories and Storytelling
      • Socio-technical Pattern Language
      • E-learning system uses metadata, user’s constraints and goals to build “custom course” pointed at current needs
      • Tools for Consultants
      • Now: Complexity Metrics & Orthogonal Defect Classification
    • Sensemaking: not just task-oriented ?
      • The Magical Hurricane Fence
      • The Case of the Deranged Disk
      • The Case of the Disconnected Doorbell
        • Initially task-oriented within a specified context--- but jumping “out” of the loop to realize you are solving the wrong problem
        • When your task is trying to make sense of XYZ, when do you realize that the whole enterprise may not be (only) about objective truth wrt XYZ?
      • Why am I pulled out of line at the airlines so often?
        • Annoying but no time to pursue (foraging theory); realize bureaucratic swamp
        • Social network eventually provides pointer to New York Magazine article about 2 years after problem first noted
        • Johnnie Thomas (80+ year old African American lady) also stopped
        • “ John Thomas” is an alias (1/20) of a 25 year old male terrorist (already in Jail)
        • Sure enough, months of her effort to solve -- > no result
    • Other sensemaking activities: Activities during which sensemaking plays a major role
      • Reading a novel
      • Watching a movie
      • Playing chess
      • Playing “cops and robbers” (making sense of the future)
      • Psychotherapy
      • Meditation
      • Religious Ceremonies
      • Finite and Infinite Games – Carsten
      • George Carlin, Robin Williams: Making NONSENSE out of sense
      • Athletic contests
      • Drugs
      • Taking a walk
      • “ Re-living” a traumatic event (making sense of the past)
      • Rationalizing conflicting narratives
    • H: Sensemaking exists at different levels of centrality to person and behavior is different
      • What does it mean to be alive?
      • What does it mean to be human?
      • What does it mean to be me?
      • How does this new technique, central to my profession, work? (cf. George in Eben)
      • How do I do this laboratory test?
      • Intermediate? Scenario with teeth
        • That is, use a scenario that “hooks into” the person’s professional identity with high motivation
    • Possible relationships to “task-oriented” sensemaking
      • Focus only on task-related. Period.
      • Broaden field of inquiry
      • Focus on task-related, but other sensemaking activities and contexts shed new light on task-related
      • Cf. Plato system and computer games
    • Hypothesis:
      • Crisis management tooling is best leveraged not by tools to help during crisis management, but by preparatory tools
      • Collaborative team scenario enactment
      • Recruitment & testing
      • Motivation
      • Shared ontology development
      • “ Common cases” shorthand
      • Kellogg Blink example: Red Team/Blue Team
    • Largely Neglected wins:
      • Story: By David McKee refers to complex common experiences in film
        • (echo of this in George’s initial “reminding” instructions)
      • Robin Williams as the Genie in Aladdin
      • Story as sensemaking Schank (cf. Kirsch, Shrager)
        • CBT for SNA (@1985)
        • Patent Tool (@2000)
      • Speechflakes: humans not just IP; energy matters; genetic predispositions matter
      • Walking People by Paula Underwood
      • Dialogue David Bohm
      • Native American technique: eight different life-long roles for group sense-making (cf. Modified Heur. Eval).
    • Narrative Sensemaking
      • Not just “moment to moment”
      • Must describe “trajectory”
      • Experience allows and limits trajectory paths
    • Memory Tales and Trails Time 1 Time N Time of Critical Event Framing filter
    • Memory Tales and Trails Time 1 Time N Time of Critical Event Framing filter
    • The Walking People
      • A Study of Cross-generational sensemaking
      • The oral history included lessons learned
      • AND --- a growing repertoire of mechanisms for sensemaking and remembering
    • Examples
      • Circle of circles
      • Redundancy, rhythm within oral history
      • Recruiting those with best memory
      • Training; verbatim & 3 alternatives
      • Action-oriented checking: tree size
      • Decades of slavery to mound-builders
      • Rule of Six
      • Who Speaks for Wolf
    • Other cases of sensemaking
      • I am watching Aladdin, Robin Williams comes on and I think, “Wow! What a great general model for remindings.”
      • I am sitting on the porch, watching the reflection of raindrops apparently falling up and struck by the acceleration; relate to the “rising fast ball” in physics of baseball
    • Time in Quarters Dollars of Profit in Millions Actual Performance of NYNEX Business Centers
    • Time in Quarters Dollars of Profit in Millions compared with prediction Performance of NYNEX Business Centers/Mgm Report