All posts from
January 2011

Building an Information Architecture Checklist

“Government environments often have prescribed complex processes for obtaining and implementing technology solutions. In order to encourage and enable information architecture (IA) in government systems, it is essential to embed IA within the current processes and to view IA as part of the overall architectural framework. The definition of IA used here is broad and inclusive spanning applications, the Web and the enterprise. A common focus exists aimed at organizing information for findability, manageability and usefulness, but the definition also includes infrastructure to support organization of information. This case study describes the development of an IA checklist in a large United States government agency. The checklist is part of an architectural review process that is applied 1) during assessment of proposed information systems projects and 2) design of solution recommendations before system implementation.” (Laura Downey and Sumit Banerjee ~ Journal of Information Architecture Volume 2 Issue 3)

The Future of Publishing

“Nostalgia, anxiety and optimism mix in this panel devoted to imagining what lies ahead for the book, as publishing professionals and others discuss the impact of digital technology on the business.” (Videolectures)

Test-Taking Enhances Learning

“People remember much more after reading if they retrieve information about the text from memory. Quizzes are one way websites can help users remember more.” (Jakob Nielsen ~ Alertbox)

A model for UX design reviews

“Design reviews are so important for our work as user experience designers, but they too often fail us. Here is a model for design reviews that overcomes the problems of ego, emotion, and communication that so often get in the way of helpful feedback.” (Davin Granroth)

The Playboy Interview: Marshall McLuhan

“(…) all media – in and of themselves and regardless of the messages they communicate – exert a compelling influence on man and society. Prehistoric, or tribal, man existed in a harmonious balance of the senses, perceiving the world equally through hearing, smell, touch, sight and taste.” (Next Nature)

Passive magic, design of delightful experience

“It is noteworthy when the design of an experience is so compelling that you feel wonder and delight. When designed right it feels totally natural, some might even say it is truly ‘intuitive’. No training is needed, no set-up, no break in flow, the tool fits seamlessly, improving without disrupting your experience; it’s like a little bit of magic.” (Stefan Klocek ~ Cooper Journal)

The Art of the Design Critique

“Critical discussion around design is as important as the design process itself. If you work in a design team, feedback from your colleagues can keep you challenged, and can push you to improve. Despite its value to the outcome of the design process, it’s far too often avoided like a trip to the dentist because we subconsciously feel criticism of our work is not just a reflection on our design, but is a spotlight upon our personal shortcomings. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Proper design criticism focus on goals, outcomes, and the needs of the users.” (Aarron Walter ~ Think Vitamin)

Nokia design head speaks about mobile UX trends

“Marko Ahtisaari speaks about existing and emerging design patterns for mobile devices. He says that the iOS design pattern is very well executed but very constrained (…); it’s the almost perfect rendition of a superlinear, application-centric design model.” (Gabriel White ~ Small Surfaces)

TEI 2011 Keynote: Bounce Back by Gilian Crampton Smith

“Overall the argument was that embodied interaction works because it draws on knowledge we have. An example is that two physical things cannot be in exactly the same place and another one is that things stay where they are if there is no force moving them. There are clear limitations to the interaction with physical objects that give indications how to use it; she referenced a paper on an exploration of physical manipulation.” (Albrecht Schmidt – User Interface Engineering)

About Content Strategy

“One of the things that stands out for me in any consideration of ‘content strategy’ is that it is centered upon the business goals of the organization. It sounds almost painfully obvious but grim reality shows us that it is not as obvious as it sounds. A content strategy should bring to the fore the idea that the content must be expressly designed and developed so as to address specific business objectives. This content must also, it follows, be designed to work with and leverage the tools that are being used, such as the search technology that a customer or prospect is most likely to call upon when looking for an answer. (…) the content strategist must take on board a raft of considerations and then chart an efficient and effective path of content investment.” (Joe Gollner ~ The Fractal Enterprise)

The Metaphor of the System (Part 2)

“When considering the structure of a building, architects often define its central, organizing idea as part of their ideation and design process. This unifying idea is known as the parti. The overall expression and movement of people through the space, the actual flow that happens through daily use, emanates from and returns to this fundamental idea.” (David Sherwin ~ ChangeOrder) Also, part 1

The A-B-C of Behaviour

“We all seem to be talking about changing behaviour through good design… but changing behaviour is actually really hard. Working as a psychologist in a detox unit at the start of my career has admittedly shaped my view of what it takes to change someone’s behaviour; and whilst I learnt it certainly isn’t impossible, it often takes time.” (@jodiemoule ~ Johnny Holland Magazine)

Content Strategy: A Roadmap for Technical Communicators

“(…) content strategy is more than a buzzword and goes above and beyond traditional project management or information architecture. Content strategy is a coordinated plan between the disciplines, which shows where an organization intends to put its content development efforts.” (Peg Mulligan)

Lisa Strausfield: The Infomaniac

“She’s a natural to work on transforming the infinite depths of data about our urban environment into patterns that reveal other patterns, says TED founder Richard Saul Wurman, who got to know Strausfeld during her days at the MIT Media Lab. She’d be on my chart of the top information architects. She’ll be a formidable figure.” (FastCompany)

Understanding the Kano Model: A Tool for Sophisticated Designers

“This model predicted the reaction of users as the key elements of Flickr’s personalized homepage propagated to other web sites. It predicted why users were initially delighted and why the delight faded over time. We find the Kano Model to be an indispensable tool for designers. Let’s take the model apart, so we can understand why it’s so useful.” (Jared Spool ~ User Interface Engineering)