Abstraction can be used at the beginning of a project to facilitate communication and reflection in order to establish a shared framework. This clarifies goals for decision makers and gives direction to the production team – preventing the project from getting stuck in the weeds.
In our everyday work, as people who create digital products, we are under a lot of pressure from clients/employers to produce concrete outputs – often with little clarity concerning goals. This leads to stress and ineffectual outcomes.
Looking at the course of human history, people have always used methods of abstraction to make sense of a complicated world (like mapmakers). As IAs we can take advantage of this natural human tactic to abstract the complex, in order to bring clarity to our work by using tools such as maps, blueprints, and personas.