- Weak signals detection
- SenseMaker® Intro
- USING SENSEMAKER ® TO UNDERSTAND GIRLS’ LIVES
- For high reliability, start with the weak signals
- DRIFTING INTO FAILURE
Most of the ways we have of finding signals in CAS make us ignore the weak signals.
Surveys, focus groups, social media scans, and almost all the paraphernalia of social studies research homogenize signals to allow the “provable” detection of the Big Signals, the ones that represent larger trends in the CAS. And statistics, as it is usually used in these studies, is designed to relegate weak signals (at best) to a distant periphery where it can be ignored. Think about what you were taught about the bell-shaped curve, and what you believe is meaningful about the data.
This approach to detecting signals is a framework that our social and profit-driven CAS imposes on us as the meaning of “worthwhile pursuit”. Weak signals are seen as useless in this framework and, thus, meaningless.
To find weak signals, we have to access the raw narrative that the signal creates once it comes into existence. We have to deliberately prevent the homogenization and loss of the weak signal through our usual methods of assigning meaning to the information. We have to learn to pay attention to the small, weak, and powerless.