Open Ethnographer's Initial Release

The “first real version” Open Ethnographer 1.0 is now live on It is ready for the coding to be done by Inga. However, a few additional features will continue to appear in the coming days (magically though, not deleting any coding data – so, happy coding.)

Big thanks to @danohu for all the code contributions to this version!

Hints for using this version:

  • The software is configured so that you can comment node and comment body fields, but not titles.
  • Since the sidebar is not there yet, export your annotations to RQDA by clicking here.
  • Merging, deleting and mass deleting of codes (or "tags", "taxonomy terms") can be done with the Taxonomy Manager. It allows you to manage everyone's codes, so be careful and look at term IDs (in the links) in case there are two codes with the same name.
  • Private coding is not there yet. Your codings are visible to everyone who can use Open Ethnographer, which means a handful of people at  the moment (our community managers and admins).

Features new in this version:

  • Quotation manager.
  • Showing others' codings with grey-ish highlighting color.
  • Tags in annotations link to quotation manager pages.
  • Complete rework of the data model, to make field-based for coding comments.
  • Coding of comments.
  • Ability to annotate different translations / language versions of the same content (#40).
  • Merging taxonomy terms.
  • Special multi-substring search in the tag autocomplete function (#6).
  • Speeding up page load times in Firefox by factor of three, fast enough now for long threads (#46).
  • RQDA export of node texts are prefixed with group names (#39).
  • Annotation permalinks are exported to RQDA as coding memos.

Features that will follow some days later:

  • The new sidebar (#50) with a tag manager and export button.
  • RQDA exporting of comments (#45) into the same texts as nodes.
  • Tag author and description (#51) and formatting fixes (#48) in the quotation manager.

May the first real-world use begin – @Inga_Popovaite and whoever else wants to use it. Since only own codes are exported to RQDA, you may all use it without tragical interferences.

1 Like

Getting the party started

Congratulations! I myself am going to install RQDA to play more with this as soon as I get back home from Berlin. And I’ve said it to Inga before, happy to help with whatever I can, so let me know, will be following the coding of stewardship discussions closely :smiley:

woop woop, looking good!

@Inga_Popovaite how are things coming along with the coding of the material using Open Ethnographer and when do you think you will be done with this first phase?

I would like a date when we go through the material and have a conversation about the contents, how to read them and what to highlight in the report.


Hmm, how did I overlooked this? I am starting coding this weekend, and I plan to be done with it by the 20th of February. Would that work?

Yes. Maybe do a checkin point with me halfway through?

20/2 is the deadline. I would like us to just touch base about the frame of enquiry before you begin.

Works for me. Should we do Skype/google hangout or discuss it here?

1 Like

here :slight_smile:

so others can weigh in if they like…no?

1 Like

So can you elaborate more on this (the  frame of enquiry)?

Bridging themes

Ok so in my mind the purpose of the gathering was to collect and build new knowledge about building resilience of community powered projects and the people who drive them?

Not as an academic exercise, but to come up with concrete ways in which we can contribute towards one anothers ability to do meaningful work and lead satisfying lives. We use the methodology to do this based on evidence and using intellectual rigor and diverse perspectives to help protect us from our own biases, misconceptions and projections…so that we, and others, can trust our conclusions as a shared foundation for moving forward. Remember this proposed outline of the report?

Does it still feel relevant to you? And which parts of it do you think we can draw from the Ethnography?

I’m at the same page

Yes, I wasn’t even thinking of uber academic report, and the proposed outline is on my mind. From what I’ve read in the data so far (first, preliminary reading), ethnography will mainly answer what is out there, and based on this we can conceptualize what is missing and how it is possible to fill in the gaps. Also, especially from case studies and session write ups, we can see what tools we have, and such resource mapping will allow to think of possible community projects etc.

These are the main categories of analysis I intend to use. Each of them serves as a nest for various tags, the same as in the STF exercise.

  • Concept (how do we understand stewardship?)
  • Actors (community, state, individuals, specific groups etc.)
  • Assets (what do we take care of?)
  • Tools-Means (what do we have? How do we do it?)
  • Challenges-Gaps (what do we face?)
  • Future

Does this look helpful in answering your question?

1 Like

How can I delete an annotation?

How can I delete a code? @Matthias? I get  ‘access denied’ for taxonomy manager. Also, what did we talk about hierarchy of tags? I can’t remember now… was it to be in the OE, or to be done after exporting in RQDA?

Fixed this. And some answers.

You delete an annotation with the top-right “X” icon in an annotation bubble.

You delete a code in taxonomy manager (I had set the wrong permission for taxonomy manager. Sorry. It works now.)

Hierarchy of tags has so far to be done after exporting in RQDA. The idea is that for fast tag selection, a hierarchy is no longer needed because of the multi-substring search in the tagging auto-completion: you would just name tags with a prefix like “Project:” to categorize them, and could also use it to limit the auto-completion results. However, since this is an early version, we welcome your input about this topic: is there a use of hierarchies that you miss in Open Ethnographer? Or does the loss of hierarchy structure when re-exporting to RQDA constitute a major headache?

Coding done

Shall we have a Google hangout to discuss the data before I start putting it into the proposed report form? Or should I post here a bullet list/mind map sort of wiki while post-coding memory is still fresh?

Go for it!

then we will discuss after. Better go while the going is good :slight_smile: