Readings' list

Kelly, D. 2006. Evaluating personal information management behaviors and tools. Commun. ACM 49, 1 (Jan. 2006), 84-86.

Summary/ Key Points

There are many PIM variation as there are people. Retrieving strategies also varies according to people.

"While we may all share some high-level PIM behavior (such as organizing and retrieving), at the operational level PIM appears to be as unique as we are. Thus, using one-size-fits-all evaluation methods and tools is likely to be a less than ideal strategy for studying something as seemingly idiosyncratic as PIM."

Approaches to study PIM:

The author proposes a shared collection of information objects with metadata to use as a benchmark for PIM research. She also proposes creating sharable tasks.

She believes that the development a common set of tasks will help the user set up studies and compare results with other studies.

Developing valid and reliable metrics for the study of PIM behavior and evaluation of PIM tools is an important area that needs attention. 'We must look to develop evaluation methods and metrics that produce valid, generalizable, sharable knowledge about how users go about the PIM activities and interactions in their daily lives."

I agree with the need to use rigorous methods. But metric and benchmarks do not conform to ethnographic or field studies.

Disclaimer: I wrote these summaries to help me remember the content and the main ideas of the paper. Since I am interested in certain aspects, I may leave out others.

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