Of course I love Michel's analogy of the technology steward with a translator.
I would say that 80% of my time goes on translating language and context for different people involved in any one project. I'm translating between different:
- national languages,
- social and cultural contexts,
- uses of tools and technology,
- disciplinary and world views.
Translating is both a process and a product. It's a process as you negotiate the meaning between different perceptions and expectations of the words you use to talk about the tools, technology, people and processes. And it's a product as you "translate" those expectations and perceptions into words.
That would be the duality of participation and reification in the words of Wenger and communities of practice. But this duality is not just a process of translation, it's also one of recontextualising meaning.
Technology stewardship is a process of negotiating meaning. Technology stewardship is a dance and a relationship between different languages and world views. It's an engagement in shared sense-making and
an attention to the processes and products of "translating", recontextualising and making meaning.