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Activity Theory
 in 20 Slides




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State of the Web

Software in 21C
  Data + Algorithms + People
Code and Features -> Think Bigger
It’s all Social and Senso...
What’s the Point
 Gathering Requirements from a Humanistic POV
 Activity Theory doesn’t replace
   UI Design
   Computer S...
Noone has ever invented anything ?!?


               All higher mental functions appear first on the
               interp...
The Zone of Proximal Development

           The distance between the actual
           developmental level as determined ...
Life = Activity




      Subject                      Object




                Aleksei Leontiev 1978


Aleksey Leontiev...
Subject has needs
Objects provide motives


Subject                   Object




                                   Biolog...
Activity in Context
                        Tools




            Subject                    Object          Outcome




 ...
Activity Theory is...
 [Arrested] Development   Activities are Hierarchical

 Interpsychological vs    Agency
 Intrapsycho...
Elements of Activity

  Level       Element    Execution      Example

                                        Improve
Hig...
Actors have Agency
               •Power over objects
               •Attraction to objects

Objects have a Lifecycle

   ...
External <--> Internal (Learning)
 Tools mediate reality to accomplish Goals
 This becomes internalized enough to be consi...
Internal <--> External (repair)
 Externalization of operations helps others learn
   Online Help
   API Documentation
   B...
Mediation/Functional Organs
Any temporary combination of internal and external
 forces which is capable of attaining a defi...
Activity Theory describes
Social Networks
It’s bigger than CODE                         Tools




  Roles
  Rules
        ...
Webapp Checklist
Activity Checklist is a useful analytical tool
List of questions in 4 categories
  Means/Ends
  Environme...
Drive requirements from User Goals
Allow for reuse with other sites/tools
Allow users to capture goals and tasks into a vi...
Trippy Metaphysics




 The Border between the mind and
 the physical world is not closed
Trippy Metaphysics (cont)

 The Mind is a stream of social artifacts, each artifact is
 constructed between people acting ...
Activity Theory
in 20 Slides конец
Activity Theory in 20 slides
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Activity Theory in 20 slides

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Activity Theory in 20 slides

  1. 1. Activity Theory in 20 Slides Search SlideShare.net
  2. 2. State of the Web Software in 21C Data + Algorithms + People Code and Features -> Think Bigger It’s all Social and Sensors
  3. 3. What’s the Point Gathering Requirements from a Humanistic POV Activity Theory doesn’t replace UI Design Computer Science Industrial Design Suggests trippy Metaphysics
  4. 4. Noone has ever invented anything ?!? All higher mental functions appear first on the interpsychological plane and then on the intrapsychological plane. Lev Vygotsky (1896-1934) because it’s social first, then individual.
  5. 5. The Zone of Proximal Development The distance between the actual developmental level as determined by independent problem solving and the level of potential development as determined through problem solving under adult guidance, or in collaboration with more capable peers. No Child Left Behind to take a test Alone
  6. 6. Life = Activity Subject Object Aleksei Leontiev 1978 Aleksey Leontiev (1904-1979) sat down and tried to document the evolution of the human mind. Woah. In Soviet Russia, Theory Activates You
  7. 7. Subject has needs Objects provide motives Subject Object Biological Needs Food Object Cultural Needs to understand Memes Object
  8. 8. Activity in Context Tools Subject Object Outcome Roles (and rules) Community Division of Labor Yrjö Engeström 1987
  9. 9. Activity Theory is... [Arrested] Development Activities are Hierarchical Interpsychological vs Agency Intrapsychological Object-Oriented Mental processes vs Internal vs External External Behavior Mediation (Functinal Organs)
  10. 10. Elements of Activity Level Element Execution Example Improve High Level Goal Intentional Firefox Create Task Intentional AwesomeBar Low Level Operation Automatic New IDL
  11. 11. Actors have Agency •Power over objects •Attraction to objects Objects have a Lifecycle Construction Instantiation Object Linking
  12. 12. External <--> Internal (Learning) Tools mediate reality to accomplish Goals This becomes internalized enough to be considered an action This becomes internalized so far that it’s an operation Shifting Gears Student Driver New Car Average Driver Goal Task Operation
  13. 13. Internal <--> External (repair) Externalization of operations helps others learn Online Help API Documentation Blog Posts Tutorials Automated Tests
  14. 14. Mediation/Functional Organs Any temporary combination of internal and external forces which is capable of attaining a definite end Eyeglasses Text Editors Add-ons Continuos Integration Env Schemas Programming Languages CrashKill team
  15. 15. Activity Theory describes Social Networks It’s bigger than CODE Tools Roles Rules Subject Object Outcome Community Roles (and rules) Community Division of Labor Open/Generative
  16. 16. Webapp Checklist Activity Checklist is a useful analytical tool List of questions in 4 categories Means/Ends Environment/Object Orientedness Learning/Cognition Development (of application)
  17. 17. Drive requirements from User Goals Allow for reuse with other sites/tools Allow users to capture goals and tasks into a visual representation to aid their memory App terminology should mirror user’s mental model of the Activity Be inherently social, allowing for subjects, roles, rules, and objects Be generative instead of prescriptive Take resistance to technology changes into account
  18. 18. Trippy Metaphysics The Border between the mind and the physical world is not closed
  19. 19. Trippy Metaphysics (cont) The Mind is a stream of social artifacts, each artifact is constructed between people acting in the world and then gradually internalized until it is indistinguishable from the mind Reality is a consensual hallucination built out of thousands of years of Activity. Each perception of reality is unique, but neither accurate or necessary for the existence of external reality
  20. 20. Activity Theory in 20 Slides конец

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