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The Navigation Layer - Making Sense Of It All

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As we accumulate more and more information online, we’re inclined to add more and more metadata—so we can order it, manage it, and re-find it. This growing belt of metadata is referred to as the “navigation layer.“ It‘s the series of filters, categories, tags, and other devices that let us to interact with information so we can sift out the noise.
What’s more, the navigation layer isn’t just about finding information—it can also help us make sense of the stuff we find. Sentiment analysis and entity extraction, for example, provide new insights into the information we come across. Ultimately, the navigation layer can point to high-order patterns that increase understanding.

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The Navigation Layer - Making Sense Of It All

  1. 1. Navigation Layer: Making Sense Of It All April 2010 Polish IA Summit, Warsaw
  2. 2. <ul><li>User Experience Consultant LexisNexis </li></ul><ul><li>LIS Degree Rutgers University </li></ul>James Kalbach
  3. 3. Metadata Structure Sense Making
  4. 4. P O P U L A R I T Y ITEMS Head = Hits Long Tail = Niche Markets
  5. 5. <ul><li>You can find anything in the Long Tail </li></ul>“ ”
  6. 6. <ul><ul><li>When there are millions of books, millions of songs, millions of films, millions of applications, millions of everything requesting our attention—and most of it free—being found is valuable.  </li></ul></ul>Kevin Kelly Findability
  7. 7. The solution to the overabundance of information is more information “ ”
  8. 8. Navigation Layer
  9. 12. No Frame of Reference
  10. 16. STRUCTURE M E T A D A T A Users Algorithms Experts Users Algorithms Experts GTN
  11. 17. <ul><ul><li>In the navigation layer, any and all types of metadata and structure may be needed. </li></ul></ul>
  12. 18. http://www.flickr.com/photos/arimoore/3816335057/ Information Foraging
  13. 19. http://www.flickr.com/photos/lindenbaum/357980051/in/set-72157594481060620 Metadata Harvesting
  14. 20. http://www.flickr.com/photos/bitzi/178374312/ Sense Making
  15. 21. <ul><ul><li>Berrypicking and information foraging are primitive metaphors. We need to be talking about metadata harvesting and sense making . </li></ul></ul>
  16. 22. CONTENT News Research Blogs Twitter … Beyond Findability: Sense Making
  17. 23. <ul><ul><li>Sense Making </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Info Seeking Theory Brenda Dervin, 1980s </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sense Making in IR Dan Russell et al. , 1993 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Human-Info Interaction (HII) Nahum Gershon,1995 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sense Making workshops CHI 2008, 2009 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>HCI/IR Workshops 2007—present </li></ul></ul>
  18. 24. <ul><ul><li>1. Representation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How information is presented affects sense making </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>BUT representation is difficult in complex situations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Text-based Lists, trees, tables, clouds </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Spatial Webs, diagrams </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Graph-based Charts, graphs </li></ul></ul></ul>
  19. 25. http://www.aalab.net/projects/maps/
  20. 28. “ Clutter and confusion are failures of design, not attributes of information.” Edward Tufte
  21. 29. <ul><ul><li>2. Interaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The ability to manipulate information is critical </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>BUT there are effort-benefit tradeoffs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sorting </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Grouping </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Filtering </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Change Display </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Zooming </li></ul></ul></ul>
  22. 31. <ul><ul><li>3. Semantics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Topical relevance frames sense making activity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>BUT semantics are subjective and changing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Content </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Categories </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Facets </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Labels </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Domain </li></ul></ul></ul>
  23. 32. <ul><li>Domain Analysis </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the structure of information in a given domain? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How is information generated ? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the social life of information ? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Facets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Frequency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Longevity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Quantity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Linking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Authority </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Quality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Genres </li></ul></ul>
  24. 35. <ul><ul><li>How do you create an information system that provides answers to questions people don’t know to ask? </li></ul></ul>Don‘t know what you need to know
  25. 36. <ul><ul><li>Sense Making Challenges: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Representation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Semantics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>4. User needs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>5. Business needs </li></ul></ul>
  26. 37. There is a cost to adding more and more Any and All Metadata and Structures Information Foraging Metadata Harvesting Findability Sense Making
  27. 38. Thank You [email_address] www.experiencinginformation.com

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