Our main posts: An overview by topic

By Gordon Rugg

This article gives an overvew of our posts so far on three main areas.

Two of these are about research methods and development methods, namely elicitation methods for gathering client requirements, and systematic approaches to visualising information.

The third area involves our Verifier approach for tackling long-standing problems, which we’ve applied to the Voynich Manuscript and to the D’Agapeyeff Cipher.

All the material listed below is copyleft Hyde & Rugg; you’re welcome to use it for any non-commercial purpose (including lectures) provided that you include the “copyleft Hyde & Rugg” acknowledgement with any material you use.

Gathering and clarifying client requirements

We’re posting a series of tutorial articles on a wide range of methods, and articles about the bigger picture of requirements gathering. The main articles that we’re posted so far are as follows.

A framework for choosing the appropriate requirements elicitation methods for different types of knowledge:


Why clients often can’t know what they need, and often don’t know what they want:


Reports: An overview of methods where the respondent reports on what they or someone else is doing (including projective techniques, scenarios, think-aloud technique, critical incident technique and hard case technique):


A tutorial article on think-aloud technique:


A tutorial article on card sorts (useful for finding out about how respondents categorise their knowledge of a particular topic)


There is also a tutorial article about laddering on our website; laddering is very useful for clarifying subjective terms and technical terms, and for eliciting respondents’ hierarchies of goals and values.

Click to access laddering.pdf

Coming soon: a tutorial article on different forms of content analysis and discourse analysis


A toolbox and set of guidelines for using visualisation systematically.

An overview of our work, within the framework of the Verifier approach:


Visual representations of categories, some set theory, and fuzzy logic – useful for clarifying exactly what people mean:


Graph theory – a powerful, rigorous and flexible representation:


Facet theory – a very useful, but not sufficiently widely known, complement to graph theory:


Search Visualizer – useful for finding relevant documents, and for textual analysis

The Voynich Manuscript

An article explaining the context and significance of the Voynich Manuscript as a case study:


Using the Search Visualizer software to show textual structures in the Voynich Manuscript:


Various critiques of the Montemurro & Zanette paper about the Voynich Manuscript, including links to other reviewers’ reactions:







The D’Agapeyeff Cipher

This has been a legendary codebreaking problem since it was published in 1939; we’ve been treating it as a test for our Verifier approach to tackling long-standing difficult problems.

An introduction to our work on the D’Agapeyeff Cipher:


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