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Information Architecture and User-friendly design
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Information Architecture and User-friendly design

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Information Architecture and User-friendly design Information Architecture and User-friendly design Presentation Transcript

  • Information Architecture: What is it?
  • Is it real?
    • Most major corporations have an information architecture team, or at least one IA person.
    • Number of jobs on seek.com.au
    • Number of jobs on HotJobs.com
    • Perhaps it is real, after all. Or is it just a new term for something we have been / or ought to have been doing?
  • So, what is Information Architecture?
    • The definition: The art and science of organizing and labeling information to improve browsing and searching
    • The thing: The structure of information and components for searching and browsing that information
  • What are its components?
    • Structuring: Chunking, grouping, and ordering content
    • Organizing: Taxonomies/hierarchies, auto-classification
    • Labeling: Indexing, vocabularies, thesauri
    • Navigating: Menus, tables of contents, site indices, search systems
  • IA: The practice
    • Balances characteristics and needs of users, content and context
    • Three phases:
      • Research
      • Design
      • Implementation
  •  
  • IA:Where it fits within User Experience
    • From Jesse James Garrett’s
    • “ The Elements of
    • User Experience”
    • www.jjg.net/ia/elements.pdf
  •  
  • Who does it?
    • Technical writers
    • Graphics artists
    • Architects
    • Film makers
    • Information specialists
      • librarians
      • publishers
      • web designers
      • database administrators
  •  
  • Emergent Fields: No one has the whole picture © © Louis Rosenfeld
  • Why Information Architecture?
    • Inform
      • scholarship
      • common good
      • instruction
    • Persuade
      • advertise/promote/sell
      • control
    • Entertain
      • passive
      • active
    • Create
  • Factors Context Message Audience Media Goals
  • Context
    • Cultural setting
      • social acceptance
      • Timing
    • Costs
  • Goals
    • Transfer/Lookups
    • Education
    • Social Good
    • Business
    • Political/Legal
  • Messages
    • Content (discipline, organization)
    • Scope
    • Complexity
    • Novelty
  • Audience
    • Range (who, where, why)
    • Knowledge base (what can you assume?)
    • Experience base (including the use of the interfaces)
    • Receptivity (physical, mental, emotional; factors like anxiety)
  • Media
    • Technical requirements
    • Format
    • Number of channels (multimedia)
    • Transfer rate (bandwidth issues)
    • Degree of interaction (upload, download)
  • Users Information (Knowledge) Information (Data) Information Architect Use - Navigate - Search - Browse - Evaluate - Design - Implement - Structure - Tag/index - Analyze - Model - Classify - Evaluate - Create - Own - Edit - Manage -
    • IA Goals
    • - satisfy user needs
    • - mediate
    • - make usable
    • add value
    • manage interaction
    • -
    Disciplines Standards Technology Policies Information Architecture Model ver. 0.01 (from IA Summit in 2000) (synthesis of ~900 terms from 250 cards) CLIENT END USER
  • Discussion Question (for Blackboard) How is the electronic medium different from: books/newspapers? film/TV? paintings/sculpture? What are the implications for users? for designers? for intermediaries?
  • Electronic medium and the ‘Information Overload.’ “ Everyone spoke of an information overload, but what there was in fact was a non-information overload.” Richard Saul Wurman, What-If, Could-Be (Philadelphia, 1976)
  • Design Process (is very much like Systems Analysis)
    • Mission definition
      • Problems/needs, materials, skills, vision
    • Feasibility
      • Needs assessment, cost-benefit analysis
    • Prototyping and evaluation
    • Implementation
    • Evaluation and maintenance
  • Information Packages
  • Aggregation of Packages Screen 1 Screen 2
  • Smaller packages, more linkages
    • Designing messages for electronic consumption suggests small chunks
      • Screen real estate limitations
      • Scroll, paging limits
    • Hyperlinks give flexibility but also add cognitive load (lost in cyberspace)
    • Implications of search engine entry points
    • Everything is becoming more like a reference work and less like a novel??
  • Packages
    • Objects
      • physical attributes (e.g., size, color, shape, pre-iconographic)
      • conceptual attributes
        • denotation (e.g., iconographic) is cultural
        • connotation (e.g., iconological) is personal and cannot be indexed.
      • behavior (e.g., display, compute, compare)
      • (based on Erwin Panofsky’s “three strata of subject matter or meaning” from Studies in Iconology (1972)
  • Packages (cont’)
    • Relationships
      • Intrapackage relationships (like pronouns)
        • physical (next page, previous screen, see Figure #, position, order)
        • conceptual (anaphora)
      • Interpackage relationships
        • physical (citations)
        • conceptual (Allusions & metaphors. These cannot be machine generated)
  • Use of metaphors in IA
    • Organisational Metaphors: shopping cart, wastebasket etc.
    • Functional Metaphors : cut and paste, paintbrush etc.
    • Visual Metaphors: homepage, window, music interface buttons that look like a stereo, folders etc.
  • Metaphors can become tired, or carry no meaning.
    • Metaphors that are too obvious: Tree for a family tree etc.
    • Metaphor Overkill : They cannot convey meaning for you if you stretch the metaphors beyond their limits.
    • Colours carry metaphors too: Be careful how you use them. Can be culture-specific also. (Blue Zone, Red Line, Yellow Fever, Red Light etc.)
  • Packages (cont’)
    • [Control] Mechanisms
      • control
        • display (scroll, jump, zoom)
        • usage monitor (histories, bookmarks, ISP, IP address)
      • query
        • analytical (Boolean; with/without relevance feedback; dynamic)
        • Selection
        • Dynamic
      • manipulation
        • cut and paste
        • add value (e.g., concordance, link plots--who links to the site, who you link to?)
        • information visualisation )
  • Events
    • Exchange cycle
      • e.g., a smile acknowledged, an http requested page returned, cookie stored (client-server model)
    • Share cycle (eg. social networking)
      • perception, processing, comprehension of an information package by more than one [person/package/object]
      • Manipulation of the information. Cannot control it once it’s out there…
  • www Design
    • Know the audience
      • Universal access
    • Iterative design and testing
      • Consider the development curve
    • Organise, organise, organise
    • Be consistent
    • Appropriate use of media
      • Avoid gratuitous ‘bells and whistles’
    • Leverage interactivity
      • Maintain interest
      • Gather feedback
  • Organisational Structures
    • List
    • Array ( a link list)
    • Hierarchy (trees)
    • Network
    • Hybrids (DNA organisation?) (This is not apparent in traditional information organisations, but happens in our heads, perhaps?)
  • Organizational Schemes
    • Alphabetical
    • Chronological
    • Geographic
    • Topical
    • Numerical
    • Administrative Parts/Units
    • Importance, size
    • Task
    • User group
    • Metaphor
    • Random
  • Control Mechanisms (Navigation)
    • Context (where am I? Branding?)
      • Consistency (layout, labeling, etc.)
    • Links (types, labels; currently not bi-directional or computed, although the early days of digital hypertext was conceived in that way)
    • Input forms
    • Menus
    • Toolbars
    • TOCs, sitemaps, tours
    • Mouse events, zooms
  • Expression
    • Words
      • Appropriate and controlled vocabulary
      • Clear, concise statements and prompts
    • Images
      • Appropriate
      • Browser friendly
    • Video, sound
      • Appropriate controls
    • Interactivity and Flow
  • Planning
    • Storyboards
    • Scenarios
    • Templates
    • Feedback from users (eg., Children’s Digital Library that was created with input from children; Fiction Finder created by Reference Librarians who interact with the users as opposed to Cataloguers who mostly interact just with the books)
    • Maintenance
  • Implementation
    • Tools
      • Wireframes
      • Software (e.g., Visio, Flowcharter)
    • Evaluation
    • Maintenance
      • Content management
      • Digital libraries
  • Examples of wireframes
  • Examples of wireframes, cont.
  • Examples of wireframes, cont.
  • IA Bibliography Constantine, Larry L., and Lucy A.D. Lockwood. Software for Use . Reading, Mass.:Addison Wesley, 1999. Krug, Steve. Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability. Indianapolis, IN: Circle.com Library, 2000. Morville, Peter. Semantics Archive . Semantics Studio Archives. Web site. Available from http://semanticstudios.com/publications/semantics/ Morville, Peter. Ambient Findability . O’Reilly Media: Safari Books, 2005. Nelson, Theodor. Computer Lib/Dream Machines , Redmond, WA: Tempus Books of Microsoft Press, 1987 Nielsen, Jakob. Usability Engineering . San Diego, CA: Morgan Kaufman, 1993. Nielsen, Jakob. Designing Web Usability . Indianapolis, IN: New Riders, 1999.
  • IA Bibliography Cont’
    • Norman, Donald A. The Design of Everyday Things . New York, NY: Doubleday, 1990.
    • Rosenfeld, Louis, and Peter Morville. Information Architecture for the World Wide Web . Sebastopol, CA: O'Reilly, 1997.
    • Shneiderman, Ben. Designing the User Interface : Strategies for Effective Human-Computer Interaction . 3rd ed. Reading, Mass.: Addison Wesley, 1997.
    • Tufte, Edward R. Envisioning Information . Cheshire, Conn.: Graphics Press, 1990.
    • Wurman, Richard Saul. Information Architects . Zurich, Switzerland: Graphis Press Corporation,,1996.
  • http://www.edwardtufte.com
    • Explore this website.
    • Edward Tufte is a pioneer in Data Graphics and in the presentation of information with visual simplicity, as opposed to ‘Chart Junk.’
    • His ideas are very useful in transmitting information in organisational settings.
    • He believes PowerPoint is evil, and it may well be :-)