Wicked Ambiguity: Solving the World's Hardest Problems
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How do you solve the world's hardest problems? And what do you do when they're unsolvable? ...
How do you solve the world's hardest problems? And what do you do when they're unsolvable?
How are user experience designers, developers, marketers, information architects, content strategists and writers more alike than they think?
Much of our work is focused on solving problems for real people with defined needs and contexts who live and work in the here and now. We take a holistic approach, break down silos within our organizations, and iteratively create real value for the people who use our products and services.
But how does our work change—and how must we adapt our approaches and strategies—when we’re planning for projects that last for not one year, or even 10 years, but for 10,000 years or more? Wicked Problems introduce massive complexity, uncertainty, and interdependencies into our work as communicators.
Using real-world examples from NASA’s Voyager program, the Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository, and other long-term projects, we'll talk about the challenges of creating information that degrades elegantly over space and time—information that’s still useful, usable, accessible, and meaningful for people whom we’ll never know in our lifetimes.
The answers to these problems give us a new perspective on our work, on the natures of clarity and simplicity, and on our common challenge: ambiguity.
Originally presented at the Society for Technical Communication (STC) Summit in Phoenix, Arizona on May 18, 2014. #stc14
You can learn more about Jonathon Colman at http://www.jonathoncolman.org/ and follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/jcolman
Also see a curated list of 200+ free Content Strategy resources at http://www.jonathoncolman.org/2013/02/04/content-strategy-resources/
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