exploring the relationship between social science and software development methodologies: a blog by Pascal Belouin

I recently had the opportunity to write a first draft for a web application allowing office workers to order hot and cold drinks online. It’s far from perfect, but gives an idea of how this problem can be approached! Introduction The aim of this document is to provide a first draft design for an online [...]

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Here are the slides from a talk I did in London at dev8d, where I tried to focus on the practical aspects of things. I hope some developers around here find it interesting! Dev8D Presentation Pascal Belouin View more presentations from Pascal Belouin.

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I am currently working on a medium-size web development project for a public organisation: the project is implemented by a small, agile team of developers external to the organisation (rather talented I must say!) on the basis of specifications written by myself and my colleague. These specs mostly consist on word documents as well as [...]

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Although only remotely connected to what should be the main concern for software development projects (that is to say that the specifications are right), the interplay of power relationships between stakeholders can really cause a lot of damage. I am not talking only about tensions that may arise between, for example, the sales team and [...]

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I try and follow a few number of simple principles when I develop the front-end of enterprise web applications (that is to say web applications which aim is to support the processes of a particular organisation), both to inform design decisions and to avoid scope creep. The main approach I tend to follow and advocate [...]

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In recent years, ‘software developers’ have traveled quite a distance in public imagination, from spotty-faced sociopathic nerds to geek chic alpha males. Some may want my head on a spike for such an appalling short cut, but one could argue that this change in the way software engineers are represented in cultural discourse may be [...]

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I recently came across an interesting problem, which I guess is quite a common one for web application developers. I am currently working on a small to middle sized web application, and the development team is using Merb, a nice and neat MVC framework, and are making very good use of the ‘spirit’ and elegance [...]

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‘Because emergence is the foundation of our approach to theory building, a researcher cannot enter an investigation with a list of preconceived concepts, a guiding theoretical framework, or a well though out design’ (Strauss and Corbin, 1998, p. 34). Although this citation from Strauss and Corbin could make sense in the context of a practical, [...]

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§140 · March 17, 2010 · Practice, Theory · 1 comment · Tags: , , , , ,


I’ve been browsing the internet for a little while to see if anybody used Bourdieu’s notion of social capital as a framework for the analysis of social software such as Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn (the latter being particularly representative). I apologise in advance to purists that may think that I oversimplify Bourdieu, but it seems [...]

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During the course of fieldwork, the ethnographer can take on a number of different roles, which could be classified in regards to the degree of one’s involvement with the population he or she is studying. For instance, according to Junker (1960) and Gold’s (1958) model, the roles available to the researcher range from the ‘complete [...]

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§125 · March 16, 2010 · Practice · 1 comment · Tags: , , , , , , ,