In fact, I would argue that such experiences suggest a flow state (Csikszentmihalyi 2009), a feeling of full absorption in an activity that has been regarded as a positive trait in many fields, including software development (e.g. Kuusinen et al. Finally, in attempting to reflect a diverse range of experiences related to IndieWeb, I attempted to find interview participants representing a range of cultural backgrounds and genders. Since personal domain names are considered the centre of one’s online identify on the IndieWeb, this process was effective at identifying a large number of links.

Another scholar, Greg McVerry, is currently engaged in a study of the IndieWeb, and is similarly welcomed as an active member of the community. This illustrates homophily (McPherson, Smith-Lovin, and Cook 2001) in two ways: First, in people’s professional networks, and second, the kind of people who are share an interest in a particular community’s way of doing things are likely to share other aspects of life experience with members of that community. Therefore, I took the notion of core/periphery as a guideline to ensure I interviewed people who reflected varying positions among IndieWeb’s community.

As evidenced in Table 3.2, this was a challenge, since a significant portion of IndieWeb’s contributors are white, male, and based in North America or other Western regions. I also endeavoured to recruit individuals who have contributed to IndieWeb in some way (even if primarily by working on their own site), ( but who appear to be less central than the first group. Ultimately, individual websites are the central unit of the IndieWeb.

All of the websites captured by IndieMap use some kind of IndieWeb features, but many have nothing to do with actually building the IndieWeb. Given my interest in this dissertation with how participants attempt to instantiate their values through design activities, initial coding tended to emphasize values and goals (e.g. autonomy, diversity and inclusion), actions and design strategies (e.g. modular design, building for oneself, outreach to other communities), and obstacles (e.g.

time constraints, difficulty interoperating with third party technologies, lack of knowledge about certain issues). Then, both by presented our projects to the class and by writing course papers, we reflected on the process of building our object, identified material and conceptual challenges, ( and explained our success (or failure) to incorporate theory into making. I took detailed notes during each stage of work, paying particular attention to how I attempted to articulate my values through design, and how material constraints affected what I perceived as possible or feasible.

During the material parts of this work, I (and others) struggled to avoid slipping into instrumental ways of thinking. Through this process, I viewed coding as a tool for orienting my thinking in relation to the data and my research questions.