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Metaphors for Sites and Navigation An Ocean of Choices Kristin Davis Information Architecture and Design I October 5, 20 PowerPoint Presentation
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Metaphors for Sites and Navigation An Ocean of Choices Kristin Davis Information Architecture and Design I October 5, 2004. What is a metaphor?. The substitution of one idea or object with another to assist expression or understanding A literary device, a figure of speech

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Metaphors for Sites and NavigationAn Ocean of ChoicesKristin DavisInformation Architecture and Design IOctober 5, 2004

what is a metaphor
What is a metaphor?
  • The substitution of one idea or object with another to assist expression or understanding
  • A literary device, a figure of speech
  • Used in music “The World Exploded into Love”
  • Used in common speech-couch potato, road hog, rug rat
why use metaphors in websites
Why use metaphors in websites?
  • To help users understand content
  • To explain, excite, persuade
  • To make a site memorable

www.dsiegal.com

popular metaphors
Popular Metaphors
  • Shopping cart
  • Books
  • Maps
  • Buildings
  • Office supplies
  • Doorway
evolution of metaphors in web site design
Evolution of Metaphors in Web Site Design
  • Desktop, folders, trashcan
  • World Wide Web
  • Browsers
  • Information Superhighway
  • Under construction
  • As the web becomes more familiar, metaphors are being used less frequently
types of metaphors
Types of Metaphors
  • Organizational-online grocery store with bakery, butcher, dairy, etc.
  • Functional-Photoshop tasks such as cut & paste, or paintbrush
  • Visual-picture of a little house links to homepage

www.bethanylankin.com

metaphor use guidelines
Metaphor Use Guidelines
  • The metaphor must be familiar to users
  • Know your audience
  • Know their level of understanding
  • Keep in mind cultural differences
  • Test on users
a few warnings
A Few Warnings
  • Don’t stretch your metaphor too far-it should be empowering, not limiting
  • Avoid obvious metaphors
  • Avoid confusing metaphors
  • Metaphors can be helpful during brainstorming-that doesn’t mean you need to keep the metaphor in the final design
  • Know when to stop
strunk white elements of style
Strunk & White: Elements of Style
  • Use figures of speech sparingly
  • They can be more distracting than illuminating
  • When you use a metaphor, do not mix it up
resources
Resources
  • Killersites.com
  • Templates (MicroSoft)