Finke (2014, p. 59; 2018, p. 32) uses, among other things, the metaphor of an apple tree to explain Citizen Science:
- The apples stand for the knowledge we strive for. The fact that apples hang in different places says nothing about their quality. However, it lets you estimate how much effort it will take to harvest the apple. There are apples that can be reached from the ground. And there are apples that can only be reached with a ladder or with great effort.
- The ladder stands for complicated scientific devices and methods, such as those used in institutional science (e.g. in basic research). Citizen Science, on the other hand, strives for simple methods. Citizen Science does not strive for the highest level of accuracy - just the precision and resilience required to master everyday life.
Following this metaphor, we take care of the obvious knowledge in WiQQi. The obvious thing can be invisible - until we become aware of it through a problem. We use this attention and make the obvious obvious through a variety of perspectives. Research in WiQQi begins when problems arise in a specific individual case. We have to deal with these problems in practice anyway - WiQQi offers a clear immediate benefit in the solution phase for little additional effort in the analysis phase:
- WiQQi requires documentation of the problem as the basis for collaboration. In the short term, this means additional work.
- However, this documentation leads to two immediate benefits:
- On the one hand, the problem is clarified by the in-depth analysis and thus more easily solved.
- On the other hand, the documented analysis enables the possibility of contributing other, possible solutions.
- The second, similar case shows a sustainable benefit:
- You can build on the previous research.
- The previous search is updated in a new case.