Kinda just like grading papers or being on a review panel for a creative award.
Or writing a play from hundreds of pages of dialogue and description and prose and poetry written by fourth or sixth graders or ninth graders from inner city public schools, which I did more than once.
You read the text once for meaning; you run through it again and note things that jump out; you go back again sometimes because you realize the approach you made the first time didn’t really fit. After about 10 or so data sets, you already start to see patterns emerging. You go back and change some things on previous readings so that you can say the same thing again, but with a new shade of meaning added.
You do it for a couple of hours until your eyes hurt. Then you stop and come back again later.
It’s sort of like crocheting, with each code being a different knot, and the data being the yarn.
“Double, single, treble…double, treble, in the same hole.”
All my metaphors are getting so domestic lately.