information architecture l.
Skip this Video
Loading SlideShow in 5 Seconds..
Information Architecture PowerPoint Presentation
Download Presentation
Information Architecture

Loading in 2 Seconds...

play fullscreen
1 / 54

Information Architecture - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

  • Uploaded on

Information Architecture. Week 5. Agenda. Presentations SILVAS, Metaphors in Web Design and Navigation MASON, Taxonomies & Classification for Organizing Content Project Plan Review Lecture – Contextual design Class Work: User Analysis. Thesauri, Vocabularies & Metadata.

I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.
Download Presentation

PowerPoint Slideshow about 'Information Architecture' - cytheria

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript
    • Presentations
  • SILVAS, Metaphors in Web Design and Navigation
  • MASON, Taxonomies & Classification for Organizing Content
    • Project Plan Review
    • Lecture – Contextual design
    • Class Work: User Analysis
thesauri vocabularies metadata
Thesauri, Vocabularies & Metadata
  • The Structure of Your Content (Part of the Plan)
  • Models the Information for the User (Content Modeling)
what do we mean by metadata
What do we mean by Metadata?
  • “…descriptive information about the context, quality and condition, or characteristics…”
  • What are some examples of metadata?
  • Tags are used to describe
  • documents
  • pages
  • images
  • software
  • video and audio files
  • other content objects
  • Why?
  • Improved navigation and retrieval
controlled vocabularies
Controlled Vocabularies
  • Establish Consistencies
      • For the Content & Developers
      • Education for the user - shaping behavior
  • Just Synonyms?
      • Lists of Equivalents (Index)
      • Aliases (Authority File)
  • “Synonym Ring”
      • Based on User’s Understanding
      • Improved Upon by IA
      • Iterative Process to Discover Alternate Words & Concepts
building your authority file
Building Your “Authority File”
  • List of preferred terms or acceptable values p180
  • The Mission Statement for your Content
    • Acronyms, Abbreviations
    • Multiple terms (“term rotation”?)
    • Cases (Upper, Lower and Mixed)
    • Labels for Button & Graphics too
  • Use a Central File to Keep Current
        • Authority.txt
    • Keep updated throughout the project
classification schemes
Classification Schemes
  • A hierarchical arrangement of preferred terms
  • Taxonomies are both visible and invisible to the user
    • Front End
      • Users (Personalized)
      • Interface (Browse)
    • Back End
      • Information Architecture
      • Content Management
      • System (Search)
    • Approaches
      • Top-Down & Bottom-Up
      • Content & Task
semantic relationships
Semantic Relationships
  • Equivalence
  • Hierarchical
    • Strong (Inherited)
      • City - Austin
    • Instance (Classes)
      • Texas - Austin
  • Associative
    • Based on Understanding of Content & user
thesaurus in action
Thesaurus in Action
  • Preferred Term
  • Variant Term (synonyms)
  • Broader Term (preferred’s parent)
  • Narrower Term (preferred’s child)
  • Related (“see also”, synonyms)
  • Use (rules for where and when)
  • Scope (restricts meaning)
faceted classification
Faceted Classification
  • “How do I describe this?” -Ranganathan
  • Multiple Dimensions
  • Now More Applicable to Digital Information
    • Personality, Matter, Energy, Space, Time
    • Topic, Product, Document Type, Audience, Geography, Price
taxonomy of decisions actions
Taxonomy of Decisions & Actions
  • Purpose of the Search
  • Method to Find Information
  • Content of the Information Being Searched
  • GVU Survey Question
    • Recent instance of important information found
  • Taxonomic Analysis of Responses from Survey
          • Morrison et al 2001
taxonomy of decisions actions cont d
Taxonomy of Decisions & Actions (cont’d)


  • Purpose


  • Morrison et al 2001
some context
Some Context
  • Myths of Technology Design
  • People can tell you exactly what they want.
  • The use of technology requires a lot of training,
  • manuals, and support.

Facts of Technology

  • Improving the user experience takes more than:
  • simply asking the user
  • introspection
what s happening here
What’s Happening Here?

What is the user doing?

What is the system doing?

a mismatch in models
A Mismatch in Models
  • The user’s mental or conceptual model of the task and how it is executed does not match the system’s implementation model






user s model vs engineer s model
User’s Model vs. Engineer’s Model
  • What user (thinks he/she) is doing
  • vs.
  • Actual Implementation
  • These issues are addressed by two types of design
  • User Centered Design
  • Focus on the user’s conceptual model
    • Participatory Design
    • Human-Centered Design
  • System Centered Design
  • Code-level organization and functionality of the system
  • “software engineering”

User Centered Design

System Centered Design






  • You are on a seasoned design team
  • Several members with skill sets both unique and overlapping
  • You handle problems from all kinds of domains
  • Often you have little prior exposure to the design problem
  • Your team has an incredible track record
  • How are you able to consistently perform?


contextual design
Contextual Design

Starts with the recognition that any system embodies a way of working.

A system's function and structure forces particular strategies, language, and work flow on its users.

Successful systems offer a way of working that customers want to adopt.

Contextual Design is a method which helps a cross-functional team come to agreement on what their customers need and how to design a system for them.

contextual design21
Contextual Design

Gather data from multiple users

Abstract data into a common model

Design depends on seeing the implications of the data

Design begins with a creative leap from customer data to implications for design and from implications to ideas for specific features

steps in contextual design
Steps in Contextual Design

Contextual Inquiry

Work Modeling



User Environment Design

Interface Design and Prototyping

contextual inquiry finding the real experts
Contextual Inquiry – finding “the real experts”

Gather Data

  • Observation
  • Interview
  • Participation
  • “Shadowing”

Learn User’s Vocabulary

Gather Artifacts

Gain an understanding of the user


what are we gonna do with it?

work modeling
Work Modeling

Organize the data

Create shared understanding and group memory

Working on the Wall

  • Everyone participates
  • Everyone contributes
  • Build consensus
  • Models/data always up
  • Immersion in the data
work modeling types of models
Work Modeling – Types of Models

Flow Model

Communication & Coordination

Sequence Model

Detailed work steps

Artifact Model

Physical elements created to support work

Cultural Model

Constraints created by policy, culture, values

Physical Model

Physical structure of work environment

flow model communication coordination
Flow Model - Communication & Coordination

How people’s roles are defined and how they communicate/coordinate

Pattern of work - Relationships rather than sequence



  • Person or group, annotated with the roles they play (interviewee is noted with a number & title)
  • Bubbles


  • List of expectations
  • Placed in bubble


  • Communication
  • Arrows
flow model communication coordination28
Flow Model - Communication & Coordination

Elements (cont’d)


  • Items created to support the work
  • Boxes on flow

Communication topic

  • Details of flow
  • Listed on arrows


  • Areas where work gets done. Shown only when it is central to the flow
  • Large Box annotated with name and activity


  • Problems on flow
  • Large Lightning Bolt
sequence model detailed work steps
Sequence Model - Detailed work steps

Steps by which work is done, triggers that activate steps, and goals

  • Pattern of work


  • Intent – Expectations of sequence
  • Trigger – What activates the sequence
  • Steps – Actions taken
  • Order – Arrows, loops, branches, connecting steps
  • Breakdowns – Problems in performing the steps
artifact model physical elements supporting work
Artifact Model - Physical elements supporting work

Artifacts are items used to support the work. They have structure, content, usage, and intent

  • An artifact model is a drawing, photocopy, or actual artifact annotated with details


  • Information – Content
  • Parts – Which are distinct in their usage
  • Structure – of parts, explicit and implicit
  • Annotations – of informal usage
  • Presentation – form of content when it is integral to function
  • Usage – when is it created, how it is used, how people move through its parts
  • Breakdowns – Problems in using the artifact
cultural model constraints of policy culture values
Cultural model - Constraints of policy, culture, values

“Cultural context is the mindset that people operate within and that plays a part in everything they do” p.108

  • Defines expectations, desires, and values
  • Written and unwritten policies


  • Influences

affect and constrain work (Bubbles)

  • Extent

the effect on the work (Bubble overlap)

  • Influence

direction of influence (Arrows)

physical model physical structure of work environment
Physical Model - Physical structure of work environment


  • Places where work is done
  • Structures that define spaces
  • Usage and movement within the space
  • Communication lines
  • Layout of artifacts/tools

Look across multiple users

  • Common practices
  • Divergent practices

Going from a few to a large population

Inductive Process


Whole User


the consolidation process
The Consolidation Process
  • For each model (flow, sequence, artifact, physical, & cultural):
    • Review model
    • Ask what is important about this model?
    • What current manual roles, tasks, steps, communication flows might better be automated?
    • What successful manual approaches can be used as a metaphor for design? (e.g., paper memory aids)
    • What breakdowns might be remedied?
consolidation the affinity diagram
Consolidation – The Affinity Diagram

Organizes individual notes into a hierarchy of common issues


  • In a group session each member has their field notes and a pad of post-its
  • One note is put-up and others look for similar notes that seem to go with it
  • Interview notes are placed together if they have an “affinity” – similar issues, intent, problems
  • Notes are given a group name that states the issue which binds them together

SPONSORED BY 3M Corporation

creating the vision
Creating the Vision
  • “Grounded Brainstorming”
    • Brainstorming because ideas are not evaluated & should flow freely
    • “Grounded” because ideas are driven by the data on customers’ work practices
    • Draw ideas on flip chart as team throws them out
  • Use ideas from “starting points”
  • Incorporate each idea into a coherent story for a redesigned work process
  • Create in the form of diagram, much like the flow model, but revised with new artifacts, communication processes, strategies
user environment design
User Environment Design

Create an explicit representation of the system work model

An Abstract "floor plan" of the new system

Shows each part of the system –

  • "rooms" that offer certain functionality
  • how each supports the user’s work
  • links between the rooms describing their relationships

NOT tied to any particular user interface

  • supports roll out sequential rollout of features
  • supports development across multiple implementation teams

Easily translated into a blueprint or site plan, developed into a prototype and tested

an alternative technique personas
An alternative technique - Personas
  • A user archetype used to guide decisions about product features
  • By designing for the archetype—whose goals and behavior patterns are well understood—you can satisfy the broader group of people represented by that archetype.
  • In most cases, personas are synthesized from a series of ethnographic interviews with real people, then captured in 1-2 page descriptions that include behavior patterns, goals, skills, attitudes, and environment, with a few fictional personal details to bring the persona to life.
  • For each product, or sometimes for each set of tools within a product, there is a small set of personas, one of whom is the primary focus for the design.
rapid ethnography
Rapid Ethnography
  • Person-centered field work
  • done in natural settings
  • holistic, observing the complete context
  • perspective of the consumer
  • Like Rapid Prototyping, Usability Inspection & Discount Usability
  • Ethnography
    • People (Practice)
    • Environments (Native)
    • Activities (Context)
  • Cultural Observation and Analysis
  • Elicit User Requirements
          • Millen 2000
rapid ethnography pt 2
Rapid Ethnography pt. 2
  • Narrow FocusShort Studies
  • Comparisons to Other Studies
  • Zoom in On Key Activities
  • Multiple Datasets (Critical Incidents)
    • Observations
    • Recording
    • Activity Walkthroughs
    • Interviews (Structured)
  • Selection of Instances that Yield Incidents
    • Key Times
    • Key Users
rapid ethnography pt 3
Rapid Ethnography pt. 3
  • Automated Data Analysis
  • Team Data Analysis
  • Scenario Analysis (storyboards)
  • Pictorial Storytelling (metaphors)
  • Lightweight Deliverables
    • Drawings (Sketches)
    • Notes (not Reports)
    • Incomplete
    • Prototypes
  • Cognitive Mapping (assumptive)
  • Substitute for Full or Complete Studies
class work who will use the site
Class Work: Who Will Use the Site?
  • Who are your target users?
  • What do you want users to get from your site?
  • Is the site a Searching site?
  • A Browsing and Learning site?
home work user analysis
Home Work: User Analysis
  • Rapid Ethnography – go find some of those users
  • What do your users have in common?
  • What are their differences?
  • What design decisions need to be specifically planned for as essential for your users?
  • What will the information on your site be used for?
for next week
For Next Week
  • Presentations
  • TSE, User IA – blogs, RSS and WIKIs
  • FOGLE, IA & Web Advertising
  • WHITWORTH, Navigation & menus
  • MCDAVID, Search Pages and Results
  • Rosenfeld, Information Architecture: Chapters 7 & 8
  • Choo, C. W., Detlor, B., & Turnbull, D. (2000). Information Seeking on the Web: An Integrated Model of Browsing and Searching. First Monday, 5(2).
  • Tauscher, L. M., & Greenberg, S. (1997). Revisitation patterns in World Wide Web navigation. Paper presented at the ACM SIGCHI '97, Atlanta, GA.
  • Site Concept Deliverable
site concept deliverable for next week
Site Concept Deliverable For Next Week
  • Sitemap diagram of your proposed project
    • One page, printed
  • User Research Document
    • One page, printed
    • What did you do?
    • Who did you find?
    • What did you learn?
  • User model (scenario starter)
    • One page, printed
      • What the site is about
      • In two sentences (at most)
    • Briefly describe
      • Who will use the site
      • Why?
      • When?
human information behavior
Human Information Behavior
  • Information Behavior – The totality of our interaction with information
  • Information Seeking – Purposive and as a consequence of need
  • Information Searching – Thought and action surrounding the interaction with info systems
  • Information Use -
    • Physical Actions – highlighting, bookmarking
    • Mental Actions – consideration of conflicting information
          • Wilson 2001