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17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 1 The Information Architecture of Everyday Things Jesse James Garrett.

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Presentation on theme: "17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 1 The Information Architecture of Everyday Things Jesse James Garrett."— Presentation transcript:

1 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 1 The Information Architecture of Everyday Things Jesse James Garrett

2 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 2 Credit where due Required reading, even though it has nothing to do with this talk

3 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 3 Kirk’s question “How can I develop my skills when I don’t have a project to work on?” I didn’t have an answer then. This talk represents a first step toward one.

4 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 4 A quote “The world can be seen as only connections, nothing else… A piece of information is really only defined by what it’s related to, and how it’s related. There really is little else to meaning. The structure is everything.” — Tim Berners-Lee Weaving the Web

5 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 5 The secret history of information architecture Information architecture is as old as human communication Where there’s information, there’s architecture

6 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 6 Spot the IA Information Architecture Waldo Where’s the information architecture in this picture?

7 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 7 Reverse-engineering Common practice in the technical world: Take things apart Put them back together See what makes them work

8 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 8 In the beginning… …was the datum.

9 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 9 And then there were two Now known as data.

10 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 10 Possibilities emerge

11 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 11 Added information, added complexity

12 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 12 Humans are pattern-makers

13 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 13 Yet another definition Information architecture is the juxtaposition of individual pieces of information in order to convey meaning.

14 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 14 Harper’s Index

15 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 15 Harper’s Index Examples Prison sentence, in years, received in June by an Oregon activist for setting fire to a car dealership : 23 Percentage of U.S. college students who say they intend to pursue a foreign language : 57 Chances that a U.S. soldier in the Vietnam War volunteered : 4 in 5 Number of cars destroyed in the fire : 3 Percentage who are actually enrolled in a foreign-language course : 8 Chance that a U.S. soldier in World War II did so : 1 in 3 Number of years since 1776 in which no nation was at war : 0 Age, in months, at which an infant can distinguish between a bird and an airplane : 9 Estimated number of times an adult must taste a disliked food before learning to like it : 10

16 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 16 Harper’s Index Percentage of U.S. college students who say they intend to pursue a foreign language : 57 Percentage of U.S. college students who are enrolled in a foreign-language course : 8

17 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 17 Juxtaposition Placing pieces of information near each other implies a relationship If no relationship is explicitly stated, the user will infer one Inference relies upon familiarity Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart George Gershwin Ludwig van Beethoven Paul McCartney Great ComposersOverrated Composers Svetlana Petrova Kevin Spencer Jacqueline McKenzie Wilhelm Bruner

18 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 18 Implicit architecture Architecture that is inferred or deduced by the user Most common form of architecture Not necessarily intentional

19 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 19 Explicit architecture Architecture that is made apparent to the user Very common for information retrieval tasks Labels can serve to make architecture explicit But explicitness doesn’t ensure clarity Example: homesolutionsresourceschannels

20 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 20 Restaurant menu cheesesteaks logo sides kids menu special combo cheesesteak toppings cheesesteak sauces everything else chips drinks

21 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 21 Random access Every user can jump in at any point in the information space Examples: Reference materials Magazines DVDs

22 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 22 Linear access Every user follows the same path through the information space Examples: Most traditional narrative forms (movies, novels, plays) Magazine articles Tutorial or instructional materials

23 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 23 Nonlinear access Each user may follow a different path through the information space Not necessarily hierarchical Examples: Web sites Interactive fiction

24 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 24 All Things Considered Two-hour program Precision timing required “The roadmap”

25 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 25 All Things Considered

26 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 26 All Things Considered news news perspective features

27 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 27 All Things Considered news news perspective features

28 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 28 Lands’ End Catalog 64 pages

29 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 29 Lands’ End Catalog An implicit architecture showcase kids women unisex men women

30 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 30 Lands’ End Catalog An alternate view kids cool-weather casual dressy summer casual spring casual special purposeshoes

31 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 31 Lands’ End Catalog Repetition page 4 page 15 page 51

32 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · Lands’ End Catalog Repetition

33 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 33 Lands’ End Catalog Reference and redirection

34 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · Lands’ End Catalog Reference and redirection

35 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 35 Ideal sources The most interesting architectures spring from problems of diversity: Diversity of information Diversity of audience Diversity of modes of access Diversity of use But don’t overlook simple problems that have simple solutions

36 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 36 Questions to ask What problem did they set out to solve? What constraints were they facing? What could they have done differently?

37 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 37 Translating ideas to the Web Extrapolate general principles Look for patterns that work independent of subject matter Keep user behavior in mind

38 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 38 Pitfalls to avoid Medium-specific constraints Conventions aren’t necessarily best practices The letter of the law vs. the spirit of the law

39 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 39 Other examples Phone bill In-flight magazine Junk mail Consumer product instructions Television news programs “Citizen Kane”

40 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 40 Book recommendations from the audience Film Form by Sergei Eisenstein Understanding Comics and Reinventing Comics by Scott McCloud Sources of Power by Gary Klein Visual Thinking by Rudolf Arnheim The Language of Vision by Gyorgy Kepes Information Design: The Knowledge Architect’s Toolkit by Graziella Tonfoni

41 17 March · The IA of Everyday Things · 41 Thanks! Jesse James Garrett


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