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Introduction to Information Architecture
 

Introduction to Information Architecture

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A presentation to help technical communicators understand what IA is all about.

A presentation to help technical communicators understand what IA is all about.

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Introduction to Information Architecture Introduction to Information Architecture Presentation Transcript

  • Information Architecture: An Introduction Joe Sokohl
  • Information Architecture is About...
    • Information findability
      • How easily can I find what I‘m looking for?
      • What type of search am I conducting: am I just browsing around, or do I know exactly what I want?
    • Information usability
      • Is the information I retrieve in a format and context I expect?
      • Can I use what I find?
    • Information organization
      • Do I go to the information I expect?
      • Do I know where the information is in relation to other elements?
  • Organizing Information
    • Put things together that belong together
      • Find organizational schemes that make sense to your users
      • Examples: Chronology, topics, tasks
      • Avoid organizing by political groups
    • Allow for the differences of information structures
      • Hierarchy
      • Hyperlink
      • Database
  • Communicating Info Architecture
    • Write clear, maintainable documents
    • Define and describe:
      • Search/retrieval strategies
      • User profiles and their mental models
      • Information types
      • Responsibility
    • A site map is not an architecture—it is the expression of an architecture
    • Use blueprints to illustrate structure
    • Edit, refine, and model
  • Sample Blueprint
  • Some Findings and Guidelines
    • Experientia docet
    • Know your users‘ mental models
    • Think like an outsider
    • Be methodological and diligent
  • Using the Web - “I’m Lost….” Layout and navigation
  • Using the Web - Layout
    • 53% of subjects had problems with the page layout
    • Hard to find what they need on the page
      • Information
      • Links - where to go next…
  • Using the Web: Navigation
    • 42% of subjects had difficulty with the classification of the information
    • “ Categories should be
    • more friendly”
    Where is the milk? This web site (and the logos on it) is/are the property of Admart These visuals are the property of the brands represented
  • This web site is/are the property of Sainsbury’s UK These visuals are the property of the brands represented
  • Strategies
    • Determine your users
    • Determine their information needs
    • Determine expectations
    • Define communication flow
    • Communicate methodology
    • Iterate classification
    • Chunk information
    • Iterate blueprints
    • Deliver
  • Sources and Links
    • Information Architecture for the World Wide Web
      • Louis Rosenfeld & Peter Morville
    • Information Architects
      • Richard Saul Wurman
    • Building Enterprise Information Architecture: Reengin-eering Information Systems
      • Melissa Cook
    • ASIST SIGIA Listserv
      • http://www.asis.org/Conferences/Summit2000/Information_Architecture/listserv.html
  • Final Words
    • Many thanks!
    • Joe Sokohl [email_address]