Sunday, December 03, 2006

Information Architecture 3.0

A bright future for IA afterall ...

"At a recent gathering of CIOs, I was introduced, not as an information architect, interaction designer, or librarian, but as a futurist. I figure this affords me the latitude to make a prediction.

Next year, after the bubble bursts, we will enter the era of Information Architecture 3.0. This won’t surprise Tim O’Reilly who slyly positioned the polar bear atop the #1 Google hit for Web 2.0 and commissioned the third edition just in time to clean up the mess.

In fact, this future is self-evident in the undisciplined, unbalanced quest for sexy Ajaxian interaction at the expense of usability, findability, accessibility, and other qualities of the user experience.

Of course, user hostile web sites are only the tip of the iceberg. Beneath the surface lurk multitudes of Web 2.0 startups and Ajaxian mashups that are way behind schedule and horribly over budget. Apparently, nobody told the entrepreneurs about the step change in design and development cost between pages and applications.

But, that’s enough gloom and doom, as the future’s quite bright, especially for information architects who find ways to connect the timeless principles of design and organization with new transmedia models of interaction, co-creation, tagging, and user participation.

Defining Information Architecture
Perhaps we should take a moment, before proceeding, to review the definition of information architecture:

1. The structural design of shared information environments.
2. The combination of organization, labeling, search, and navigation systems within web sites and intranets.
3. The art and science of shaping information products and experiences to support usability and findability.
4. An emerging discipline and community of practice focused on bringing principles of design and architecture to the digital landscape."    (Continued via Semantic Studio)    [Usability Resources]

Three Circles of IA - Usability, User Interface Design

Three Circles of IA

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