All my research and software development on argument visualization, sensemaking and organizational memory derives originally from work on approaches to representing Design Rationale (particularly for human-centred computing) since starting my PhD in the late 80s on the usability and utility of argumentation-based design rationale. The landmark volume published in 1996 was Design Rationale: Concepts, Techniques and Use, edited by Tom Moran and John Carroll. A decade later saw Rationale Management in Software Engineering (Eds. Dutoit, McCall, Mistrik & Paech), this time from a more software engineering perspective, reflecting on a decade’s progress.
Now, following an NSF workshop last year chaired by John Carroll, a special journal issue of Human Technology has just been published, with a specific focus on one of the most interesting tensions in DR: that between explicit, logical Rationale, and Creativity. Since HT is open access, you’ll find the full volume right here…
Carroll, J.M. (2010). (Ed.) Creativity and Rationale in Software Design. Special Issue of Human Technology: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Humans in ICT Environments, Volume 6, Number 1, pp. 1-149. Available at: www.humantechnology.jyu.fi
This includes an article led by KMi’s Al Selvin, as blogged earlier under the broader heading of Knowledge Art, which nicely illustrates how we are seeing deeper principles emerge from the longitudinal study of the original DR tools, as they spread to new arenas, and a language emerged for the skillsets and practices that make them effective.