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03-19-11, 10:14 AM   #1
timmerino
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Addon Developer Interviews

I am a graduate student at the University of Texas at Austin and I am working on a research project which is examining the use of AddOns in World of Warcraft and the Blizzard AddOn UI model. I would be interested in speaking with any AddOn developer with any level of AddOn development experience. It doesn't matter whether you develop AddOns for public use or just your own personal use. I anticipate that the interviews will take between one and two hours and we can conduct them online. I have conducted the majority of my interviews in WoW through RealID chat. Please let me know if you are interested, and I look forward to speaking with you!

Tim Arnold
Master's Candidate in Information Studies, Expected 2012
The University of Texas at Austin

[email protected]

Last edited by timmerino : 03-19-11 at 01:44 PM. Reason: Misspell in the title
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03-19-11, 10:35 PM   #2
Crissa
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That's usually a scam, you know. Original research? How are we to know this is real?

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03-19-11, 11:05 PM   #3
Seerah
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Not always...
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03-19-11, 11:08 PM   #4
Grimsin
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Asking for real id conversations though is risky. That provides people with your account login name basically. I would only do this if you have a authenticator.

Seerah - do you have inside info that this person is legit?
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03-19-11, 11:34 PM   #5
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No, I do not. But I prefer not to be accusatory. Though you are correct - one should always be careful.
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03-19-11, 11:42 PM   #6
timmerino
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I'm sorry, I didn't consider that one might think that this is a scam. If you feel at all uncomfortable chatting over RealID, I would be more than happy to use any other IM service. I have actually conducted a number of interviews over Gmail's IM, but I could definitely use any other IM.

As to verifying my identity: my name is Tim Arnold. I am a dual Master's degree candidate in Information Studies and Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. In both disciplines I mainly focus on new media, online communities and online culture. I can provide you with links to various net profiles which verify this information:

Here is a short profile on the website of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies which lists my name and my enrollment in the dual degree program (along with a really unfortunate photo of me, ugh).

This is the website for the grant-funded program in videogame preservation at the School of Information at UT for which I am a research assistant.

I also have a Twitter account and a LibraryThing profile which corroborate some of the information I listed above.

I will definitely make copies of my final paper available to all of my interviewees, and with luck it will be published in the proceedings of the Digital Games Research Association. I applied to speak about this research project on WoW Addons at their conference next September. I'll find out whether my proposal was accepted next month.

If there is anything else that I can do to set your mind at ease, please let me know!

Last edited by timmerino : 03-20-11 at 11:58 AM.
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03-20-11, 12:32 AM   #7
timmerino
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Also, just to explain why I asked to conduct the interview over RealID - up to this point, most of my interviews have been with AddOn users and I have found that it has been helpful to interview people about AddOns in the environment in which they use them so that they can easily refer to their AddOns during the interview if they need to. So RealID has been my preferred method of communication, though, as I mentioned earlier, I have conducted interviews over other IM services and I'm more than willing to do so again.

Tim
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03-20-11, 01:30 AM   #8
hankthetank
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That is the typical field of study one deals with in a research paper for a master's degree nowadays, AddOn development in World of Warcraft? Holy moses!
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03-20-11, 02:04 AM   #9
timmerino
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LOL! I'm not really sure that I'd call it "typical." I'm just interested in pretty unconventional topics.
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03-20-11, 07:13 AM   #10
Nobgul
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I have seen at least 2 schools in the last month or so that includes World Of Warcraft programming in the course, as a matter of fact they are using the World of Warcraft Programming: A Guide and Reference for Creating WoW Addons.
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03-20-11, 08:07 AM   #11
Grimsin
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I tell ya what, its a great way to learn LUA and XML.

Tim - Im on the road for the next 3 days but I'll partake in your interview when I get back Tuesday evening.
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03-20-11, 11:55 AM   #12
timmerino
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Originally Posted by Grimsin View Post
I tell ya what, its a great way to learn LUA and XML.

Tim - Im on the road for the next 3 days but I'll partake in your interview when I get back Tuesday evening.
Great, thanks Grimsin! I look forward to hearing from you then.

Safe travels.
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03-20-11, 07:16 PM   #13
Xinhuan
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Perhaps you can provide more information on what your paper is about, how the the information from the interview will be used, what types of questions and their scope you will be asking.

Since you said you are in Austin, you should also consider the additional efforts needed when trying to talk to people that are not from the US WoW servers. I can probably agree to help you, since I've done a similar thing in the past with another graduating student doing a similar and related paper (not sure how related, since your paper's detail isn't clarified) 2 years ago.

Many addon authors are often available on #wowace and #wowinterface on the Freenode IRC servers at all times of the day.
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03-20-11, 07:28 PM   #14
Crissa
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I didn't want to be accusatory, but I've been reading forums on the internet for... Umm... Longer than a grad student might be alive. So I've seen scams before.

Thank you for providing more details.

-Crissa
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03-20-11, 07:57 PM   #15
Xrystal
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Being someone from outside the states time zones are an issue.

The sort of questions and answers you need surely could have been put into some sort of questionaire format that can be filled in and sent back ? I'd gladly partake in that sort of question/answer system rather than a one to one personally. Just make sure there is a N/A option for those answers that people may rather not answer.
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03-20-11, 08:23 PM   #16
timmerino
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Crissa, no offense was taken, I understand why one might be skeptical of such a post given its generality and ambiguity.

And Xinhuan, I understand your concern about how this research might be used but I assure you that it will only be used for academic purposes.

In a broad sense the objective of my research is to translate the experience of using and developing AddOns to an audience who do not use them and may not be aware of them. I don't want to be any more specific than that mostly because I don't want to suggest to you how you should think about the questions before I ask them. I'm primarily concerned with eliciting what you think is important about AddOns and AddOn development, so my questions will be broad and open-ended: "Why did you decide to start creating AddOns?" or "How did you get the idea to a create (a specific) AddOn?" These are a couple of examples of the kinds of questions I'll be asking.

After we have conducted the interview, I would be happy to talk more specifically about the hypotheses that I have started forming as a result of my research thus far.

I recently created an IRC account, so I can definitely use that service, though I am new to it so I am still getting my bearings. Send me a private message here if you are interested in setting up a time for the interview.

Originally Posted by Crissa View Post
I didn't want to be accusatory, but I've been reading forums on the internet for... Umm... Longer than a grad student might be alive. So I've seen scams before.

Thank you for providing more details.

-Crissa
Originally Posted by Xinhuan View Post
Perhaps you can provide more information on what your paper is about, how the the information from the interview will be used, what types of questions and their scope you will be asking.

Since you said you are in Austin, you should also consider the additional efforts needed when trying to talk to people that are not from the US WoW servers. I can probably agree to help you, since I've done a similar thing in the past with another graduating student doing a similar and related paper (not sure how related, since your paper's detail isn't clarified) 2 years ago.

Many addon authors are often available on #wowace and #wowinterface on the Freenode IRC servers at all times of the day.

Last edited by timmerino : 03-20-11 at 08:32 PM.
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03-20-11, 08:28 PM   #17
Seerah
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Originally Posted by Xinhuan View Post
#wowinterface
psst - #wowuidev
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03-20-11, 08:54 PM   #18
timmerino
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Xrystal,

I do have a list of questions that I could send you, but I would much rather ask the questions personally so that we can have a conversation about them. As I stated above, the questions are very open-ended (there are very few yes/no and multiple choice questions) and I would like to be able to ask follow-up questions during our conversation.

That being the case, if the time difference (I'm in US-Central Standard Time) is such that it makes a real-time interview too difficult to coordinate, I could send the list of questions with the caveat that you allow me to ask follow-up questions to your responses. If you would prefer this method, feel free to email me at [email protected], and I will send the list to you.

Originally Posted by Xrystal View Post
Being someone from outside the states time zones are an issue.

The sort of questions and answers you need surely could have been put into some sort of questionaire format that can be filled in and sent back ? I'd gladly partake in that sort of question/answer system rather than a one to one personally. Just make sure there is a N/A option for those answers that people may rather not answer.
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03-21-11, 03:14 AM   #19
Xinhuan
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I will suggest that if you wish to contact me for some questions, to use IRC and hang out/contact me on Freenode IRC servers (I'm on #wowuidev and #wowace). I'm usually on all day 24/7, although I might not respond immediately, or even for a few hours depending if I'm awake.

Primarily, I only log on WoW for raids between 6am-11am Texas time (which is 7pm-12mn Singapore time in my case), with a time zone difference of 13 hours, and conducting an interview during a raid (after is fine) is not ideal. You can find me on as Xinhuan on US-Barthilas-Alliance. (My guild raids Wed/Thurs/Sun/Mon).
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03-21-11, 09:11 AM   #20
Ketho
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Originally Posted by Xinhuan View Post
Many addon authors are often available on #wowace and #wowuidev on the Freenode IRC servers at all times of the day.
I also told Mr. Tim Arnold to just "get an IRC client and hop on #wowuidev", but he seems dead set on having an appointed/specific time .. I think that kinda defeats the purpose of IRC
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