Information Architecture 3.0

30 Nov 2006 - 9:41am
7 years ago
6 replies
1272 reads
morville
2010

Since this article was partly inspired by IxDA discussions, I think it's
only fair to post it here:

http://semanticstudios.com/publications/semantics/000149.php

And, if I'm wrong about my predictions, at least I'll have time to write
more than one Semantics article a year. Cheers!

Peter Morville
President, Semantic Studios
http://semanticstudios.com/
http://findability.org/

Comments

30 Nov 2006 - 12:33pm
Mark Schraad
2006

Great article Peter - I can't say I am on the same page, but I am glad that you are writing about this as it deserves more discussion. I need some time do digest it as there is a lot of content to ponder, but one initial observation regarding your taking the following quote to task:

"When corporate interest in the Web had reached its peak around 2000, a discipline called information architecture (IA) seemed like it might eventually embody the kind of design discussed here. But, even as the financial prospects of the Web have waned, IA has largely retained its narrow, Web-centric view of organizing and navigating content in pages. With the apparent decline of the new economy, the fortunes of the IA community have similarly diminished."

When the model used to plan is less dynamic than the medium, you can easily miss the opportunity to optimize the medium. It may be to a point that web and aps can no longer be architected well on paper. I do not have the answer, but there is definitely a large disconnect between the planning and execution.

Mark

On Thursday, November 30, 2006, at 09:42AM, "Peter Morville" <morville at semanticstudios.com> wrote:
>Since this article was partly inspired by IxDA discussions, I think it's
>only fair to post it here:
>
>http://semanticstudios.com/publications/semantics/000149.php
>
>And, if I'm wrong about my predictions, at least I'll have time to write
>more than one Semantics article a year. Cheers!
>

30 Nov 2006 - 12:55pm
morville
2010

Thanks Mark! The question you raise is a tough one. I worked on a couple of
Web 2.0 projects this summer. In both cases, I was able to communicate my
ideas fairly well through a combination of wireframes, functional
specifications (in narrative form), and conversations. In neither case did I
have an opportunity to work closely with the developers. On the plus side,
on both projects, I worked closely with the entrepreneurs who had a very
good understanding of user experience and software design, so that made
things easier than usual.

I'm not sure there is an optimal way to tackle this issue of deliverables.
It depends on the type of product, the composition of the project team, and
other contextual variables. Cheers!

Peter Morville
President, Semantic Studios
http://semanticstudios.com/
http://findability.org/

-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Schraad [mailto:mschraad at mac.com]
Sent: Thursday, November 30, 2006 12:34 PM
To: Peter Morville
Cc: 'IDA'
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] Information Architecture 3.0

Great article Peter - I can't say I am on the same page, but I am glad that
you are writing about this as it deserves more discussion. I need some time
do digest it as there is a lot of content to ponder, but one initial
observation regarding your taking the following quote to task:

"When corporate interest in the Web had reached its peak around 2000, a
discipline called information architecture (IA) seemed like it might
eventually embody the kind of design discussed here. But, even as the
financial prospects of the Web have waned, IA has largely retained its
narrow, Web-centric view of organizing and navigating content in pages. With
the apparent decline of the new economy, the fortunes of the IA community
have similarly diminished."

When the model used to plan is less dynamic than the medium, you can easily
miss the opportunity to optimize the medium. It may be to a point that web
and aps can no longer be architected well on paper. I do not have the
answer, but there is definitely a large disconnect between the planning and
execution.

Mark

On Thursday, November 30, 2006, at 09:42AM, "Peter Morville"
<morville at semanticstudios.com> wrote:
>Since this article was partly inspired by IxDA discussions, I think
>it's only fair to post it here:
>
>http://semanticstudios.com/publications/semantics/000149.php
>
>And, if I'm wrong about my predictions, at least I'll have time to
>write more than one Semantics article a year. Cheers!
>

30 Nov 2006 - 1:07pm
morville
2010

I just realized that I missed part of your point...though my initial
response did reveal that I continue to have a Web-centric view :-) I believe
that many information architects, like interaction designers, are pretty
excited by the prospect of multi-channel, transmedia design. But, for now,
most of the low-hanging fruit remains on the Web. I think we'll find better
solutions for modeling as we get more opportunities to experiment.

Peter Morville
President, Semantic Studios
http://semanticstudios.com/
http://findability.org/

-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Schraad [mailto:mschraad at mac.com]
Sent: Thursday, November 30, 2006 12:34 PM
To: Peter Morville
Cc: 'IDA'
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] Information Architecture 3.0

Great article Peter - I can't say I am on the same page, but I am glad that
you are writing about this as it deserves more discussion. I need some time
do digest it as there is a lot of content to ponder, but one initial
observation regarding your taking the following quote to task:

"When corporate interest in the Web had reached its peak around 2000, a
discipline called information architecture (IA) seemed like it might
eventually embody the kind of design discussed here. But, even as the
financial prospects of the Web have waned, IA has largely retained its
narrow, Web-centric view of organizing and navigating content in pages. With
the apparent decline of the new economy, the fortunes of the IA community
have similarly diminished."

When the model used to plan is less dynamic than the medium, you can easily
miss the opportunity to optimize the medium. It may be to a point that web
and aps can no longer be architected well on paper. I do not have the
answer, but there is definitely a large disconnect between the planning and
execution.

Mark

On Thursday, November 30, 2006, at 09:42AM, "Peter Morville"
<morville at semanticstudios.com> wrote:
>Since this article was partly inspired by IxDA discussions, I think
>it's only fair to post it here:
>
>http://semanticstudios.com/publications/semantics/000149.php
>
>And, if I'm wrong about my predictions, at least I'll have time to
>write more than one Semantics article a year. Cheers!
>

30 Nov 2006 - 2:03pm
Dave Malouf
2005

I posted a response to Peter's article on my blog:

http://synapticburn.com/comments.php?id=201_0_1_0_C

Summary:
* loved the addition of "community"
* liked looking at the importance of having a concise definition
* thought you were overreacting and mis-representing the relationship
between IxD and IA
* think that the key here is bridges between all UX groups, but
definitions and respect are required.

-- dave

--
David Malouf
dave at ixda.org
http://ixda.org/

30 Nov 2006 - 2:30pm
morville
2010

Thanks Dave! As I noted in my article's comments, I appreciate your
thoughtful, balanced response. We don't agree on everything, but the
discussion is productive.

Peter Morville
President, Semantic Studios
http://semanticstudios.com/
http://findability.org/

-----Original Message-----
From: discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
[mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com] On Behalf Of David
Malouf
Sent: Thursday, November 30, 2006 2:04 PM
To: discuss at ixda.org
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] Information Architecture 3.0

I posted a response to Peter's article on my blog:

http://synapticburn.com/comments.php?id=201_0_1_0_C

Summary:
* loved the addition of "community"
* liked looking at the importance of having a concise definition
* thought you were overreacting and mis-representing the relationship
between IxD and IA
* think that the key here is bridges between all UX groups, but definitions
and respect are required.

-- dave

--
David Malouf
dave at ixda.org
http://ixda.org/

________________________________________________________________
Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org List Guidelines ............
http://listguide.ixda.org/ List Help ..................
http://listhelp.ixda.org/ (Un)Subscription Options ...
http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
Announcements List ......... http://subscribe-announce.ixda.org/
Questions .................. lists at ixda.org Home .......................
http://ixda.org/ Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org

1 Dec 2006 - 6:42am
pabini
2004

Hi Peter

Great post! Your words echo a discussion I had recently with Lou Rosenfeld as I was working on some new definitions for the UXmatters Glossary—definitions of IA and IxD, coming soon on UXmatters.

Here’s what I said: “I think too many definitions are overly vague and, therefore, unclear, so I want to be specific, even at the cost of possibly engendering controversy. It’s always difficult to find agreement among UX professionals with different specialties about the boundaries that demarcate them. I draw the lines between them myself based purely on good labeling, not people’s roles in their professions. IAs do interaction design and interaction designers do IA.”

I’ve always thought “big IA” means people who call themselves IAs also doing interaction design. ;-)

I heartily concur with you regarding the need to balance the concepts of discipline, role, and community.

I think IA and IxD are both alive and well as professions. In the UXmatters Reader Survey that just concluded, almost twice as many respondents identified their primary UX specialty as IA as for any other specialty. IxD and UI design were tied as the next most frequent responses; followed by UX design and Web design. To the question “What are other UX specialties on which you focus in your work?" the most common answer was IxD, closely followed by IA.

Considering that Boxes and Arrows was created as a Web journal for IAs, with so many IAs reading UXmatters, either IAs are great readers, or there are a lot of them out there. ☺ In either case, we're glad both IAs and IxDs are reading UXmatters.

In the UX community, there's room for everyone.

Pabini Gabriel-Petit

Syndicate content Get the feed