About Java
About ESA
Ethno's Help System

Ethno, the Event Structure Analysis (ESA) program, was written in the Java programming language by David Heise. Your Internet browser downloads the program from Indiana University. Then your computer runs the program.

About Java

The great benefit of Java is that a Java program runs on any computer - Wintel, Unix, Macintosh, etc. And a Java program is available to anyone with an Internet connection. All that's needed is an Internet browser that implements Java. 

However, Java has some limitations. Java has stringent security restrictions to keep viruses off your computer. Therefore a Java Internet program cannot write files to your computer. This means that saving your work involves a special procedure, which is described in the Help message on Import-Export. Another aspect of Java security is a message on some windows, indicating that the window comes from a Java program.

About ESA

Event Structure Analysis is a qualitative methodology for understanding sequential events. Prerequisite analysis focuses on how the events are connected logically. The program draws a chart showing the prerequisite structure. Composition analysis focuses on how the events link people and things. The program creates tables showing how a narrative associates people with each other and with non-human entities.

Event structure analysis is a substantial topic with its own literature. Check the ESA Reference page, which contains links to some on-line versions of papers.

The following table outlines procedures for conducting analyses with Ethno. Each column displays steps involved in a particular kind of analysis. "Careful" and "Thorough" analyses involve more work. However, these kinds of analyses also provide you with more information as you perform analytic tasks, enhancing the quality of interpretations and judgments.

 
Prerequisite Analyses Composition Analyses
Quick Careful Thorough Careful Thorough

Copy a narrative text into ESA to save quotes with events. Copy a narrative text into ESA to save quotes with events.
Copy a narrative text into ESA to save quotes with events.
Enter sequence of short names. Enter sequence of short names. Enter sequence of short names. Enter sequence of short names. Enter sequence of short names.


Define relevant entities, people and acts, and specify each event's agent, act, object, instrument, alignment, setting, product, and beneficiary. Define relevant entities, people and acts, and specify each event's agent, act, object, instrument, alignment, setting, product, and beneficiary. Define relevant entities, people and acts, and specify each event's agent, act, object, instrument, alignment, setting, product, and beneficiary.



Compute associations of key people and entities. Compute associations of key people and entities.




Define abstract types and compute their associations.

Enter full sentence descriptions of each event. Enter full sentence descriptions of each event.
Link the events Link the events Link the events

Eliminate unneeded detail with summary events. Eliminate unneeded detail with summary events.
Test the model to refine it. Test the model to refine it. Test the model to refine it.


Specify and test a generalized model.

Help Messages

A separate help display is available for each of the different kinds of tasks involved in Event Structure Analysis. Each help display is a separate page that appears in your Internet browser.

The table below outlines the help system. Titles in the table are hyperlinked so that you can visit the displays from here.

 
Help Title Topics Covered
Introduction What you are viewing now.
Sequence How to define new actions by typing short names. How to use a narrative text in analyses. How to edit the sequential record of actions.
Actions How to edit short names. How to enter full action descriptions and comments. How to code an action's Agent, Act, Object, Instrument, Alignment, Setting, Product, and Beneficiary. How to define entities, people, and acts. How to change some action parameters in a process model.
Associations How to define entities, people, and acts, and generalizations of these. How to analyze associations among entities, people, and acts that are created by co-occurrences in actions.
Linking How to specify prerequisites for actions. How to change the questioning that helps you specify an action's prerequisites.
Chart How to modify an ESA model, working directly on the chart. How to refine a model's ability to account for sequential process. How to find blocks of actions that can be summarized as a single action. How to develop a model of generalized actions that interprets a narrative at a higher level of abstraction. How to print the chart.
Import-Export How to import a sequence of actions that you prepared in a text processor. How to save data generated in the program. How to re-use saved data at a later time. How to save and recall a generalized model.


URL: www.indiana.edu/~socpsy/ESA/Introduction.html
1997, 2001, 2007, 2012 David Heise