Friday, August 8, 2008

Body or skeleton of evidence?

Via my RSS feeds from e-Ako; Whilst it is good to see some research on this topic (generational influences et al) it prompted me to ponder over whether research is too quickly cited/referenced when a good practice would be to compare and contrast this research against other works of evidence. Don't get me wrong. The e-Ako blog does nothing to suggest that this is the truth and nothing but the truth. But it raises some thinking on my part.

This could be why the WWW comes under so much criticism from those who see self publishing as a form of bastardry against those "enlightened' works where peer review and consultation/comparison provide enough debate.

I am of two schools here. The connectedness of the web allows me to consider published opinion and published documents/objects on my lonesome ownsome and then connect with those people whom I think I have something in common. Stephen Downes for instance, publishes his OLDaily and from time to time over the years I have commented or asked questions. Whilst I do not expect Stephen to remember me or cite me, it is what he publishes that resonates with me and that is our connectedness. When connected, I believe an individual has transformed or changed in some way. Therefore I am happy that someone publishes, it has an effect and I have changed in some way.

My second thought is that it is increasingly becoming difficult to separate intent and desired outcome from context when wanting to do "more" than just comment on research. If I want to prove or disprove research or "apply" the findings of that research, then this is where rigour, comparison and contrast are needed so my "application" or "opinion" is well informed. I don't have a problem with this as the intent and the context should demand this from me to achieve my desired outcome.

I would love to see more commentary on this as I am sure I am not the only one who has thoughts on this subject. Probably not as articulate as I could be but I think you get the gist of my rumination.......

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