Murphy's Law

Knight brings up a very important point in this week's reading: technology and the human element have the potential to present very real headaches during the course of interview research! I'm positive that everyone has had issues with technology at one point or another. In my personal experience, I have forever been cursed with computers that have some hardware issue or another. Even the overpriced laptop I currently own locks up randomly due to a faulty processor. Due to these wonderful experiences I have learned to have data backed up to at least three hard drives/flash memory/etc. at any given time. I'm sure these habits are applicable in the research realm. Knight even mentions that data should be collected through several recorders at once.

The human element can be equally hit and miss. Knight says to “try and distribute tasks so as to use partners' strengths and avoid [the] weaknesses [of research assistants]” (p. 163). I'm sure everyone has been in group projects in which everyone contributes, and others in which no one seems to contribute. The only method that seems to work in the latter situation is to assign tasks (in my experience). I suppose that it is equally challenging to develop camaraderie with research subjects.


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