Participant observation changes things

By good fortune made it along to the Institute of Physics last Thursday to hear some presentations on web analytics tools. Fun thing about the institute is that there are as I had hoped lots of fun art work inspired by physics. I managed to capture one titled ‘Plexus’ which caught by eye due to the colour and title.

In the end I had to leave early for the Headshift Xmas party, but not before catching the Site Intelligence presentation which was good as it gave a nice overview of the kind of information available to really see how to make e-commerce sites really pay their way.

By the way ‘participant observation changes things’ is my link between (quantum)  physics and the web (social software/Web 2.0). By which I mean that in quantum physics very basically observation had an effect on the observed; and that in web interaction too observation has an effect, it’s not ‘neutral’.  And what’s more the quality of that observation makes a difference. Plus if the character of that observation is unexpected and the response of the observer to the reaction of the observed is additionally unexpected then the effect is not ‘ordinary’.