All posts from
April 2008

Video Interviews with IA Pioneers

“At the 2007 IA Summit in Las Vegas, IAKM worked to gather video interviews from the top and pioneering professionals in the Information Architecture-related fields. Through the course of the Summit, many interviews were collected to be used in IAKM courses as well as in an effort to create a video history of the discipline. Following are some clips from the interviews. A video repository is currently under development.” (Information Architecture and Knowledge Management Kent State University) – courtesy of bloug

IA Summit 2008 Slides

“There have been some absolutely phenomenal presentations at the IA Summit in Miami so far. If you didn’t happen to make it out to the conference or you’d like to revisit the material, I’ve amassed a list of IA Summit podcasts and PowerPoint slides. Not all presentations have been made available online yet so I’ll make a follow-up post in a couple of days to capture any new presentation links.” (NLC Internet Marketing Blog)

Experience Partners: Giving Center Stage to Customer Delight

“Today, the design industry is at the threshold of a new epoch—a point of theoretically limitlessness potential for expansion. We must decide just how, going forward, we will relate to the people who use our designs—as people who are “busy and eager to get on with it” yet “alert and caring” or, much less constructively, as people who are merely “simple-minded and stupid.” Therefore, I want to propose the concept of experience partners as a whole new way of thinking about our customers as partners in holistic product experiences. We need new terminology to describe this concept, because the term users limits us to old ways of thinking about the world we live in and the products we develop. The term experience partners reflects an emerging paradigm shift from a focus on product features to instead conceptualizing holistic product experiences and embodies our best understanding of how to design products that create delight and become integral, harmonious parts of people’s lives.” (Greg NudelmanUXmatters)

Defining Experience: Clarity Amidst the Jargon

“The word experience has gained significant traction over the past 15 years. Beginning with the mainstreaming of the term user experience in the software industry and, later, extended to the work of marketing professionals who began thinking about marketing as being experiential, the idea of experience as a focused professional area of endeavor is alive, well, and growing rapidly. However, the more our space grows, the more confused and chaotic is our collective understanding of the meaning of these terms. To try to help clarify this murkiness, I want to share my definitional model for the fields of experience and provide guidelines for the use of various terms.” (Dirk KnemeyerUXmatters)

Co-creation and the new landscapes of design PDF Logo

“Designers have been moving increasingly closer to the future users of what they design and the next new thing in the changing landscape of design research has become co-designing with your users. But co-designing is actually not new at all, having taken distinctly different paths in the US and in Europe. The evolution in design research from a user-centered approach to co-designing is changing the roles of the designer, the researcher and the person formerly known as the ‘user’. The implications of this shift for the education of designers and researchers are enormous. The evolution in design research from a user-centered approach to co-designing is changing the landscape of design practice as well, creating new domains of collective creativity. It is hoped that this evolution will support a transformation toward more sustainable ways of living in the future.” (Elizabeth Sanders and Pieter Jan Stappers)

Do Real People Really Use Tag Clouds?

“Much has been said about how the Web 2.0 era has fundamentally altered the way consumers interact online. But to what degree is today’s digital consumer really changing her online behavior? Are the hallmarks of Web 2.0 site design (tag clouds, wikis, social media, etc.) on the way to becoming mainstream hits or just techno-hype? And what are the implications for us, as experience designers, as we strive to create more useful and usable digital products?” (Garrick Schmitt – AA | Razorfish Digital Design Blog)

Sharing Your Experience about User eXperience PDF Logo

“Why is the lack of a shared definition? There are several reasons: First, UX is associated with a broad range of fuzzy and dynamic concepts, including emotional, affective, experiential, hedonic, and aesthetic variables. Typical examples of so-called elemental attributes of UX like fun, pleasure, pride, joy, surprise, and intimacy are but a subset of a growing list of human values. Inclusion and exclusion of particular values or attributes seem arbitrary, depending on the author’s background and interest. Second, the unit of analysis for UX is too malleable, ranging from a single aspect of an individual end-user’s interaction with a standalone application to all aspects of multiple end-users’ interactions with the company and the merging of the services of multiple disciplines. Third, the landscape of UX research is fragmented and complicated by diverse theoretical models with different foci such as emotion, affect, experience, value, pleasure, beauty, etc.” (MAUSE COST Action 294)

The Network in the Garden PDF Logo

CHI 2008 Awarded Best Paper – “History repeatedly demonstrates that rural communities have unique technological needs. Yet, we know little about how rural communities use modern technologies, so we lack knowledge on how to design for them. To address this gap, our empirical paper investigates behavioral differences between more than 3,000 rural and urban social media users. Using a dataset collected from a broadly popular social network site, we analyze users’ profiles, 340,000 online friendships and 200,000 interpersonal messages. Using social capital theory, we predict differences between rural and urban users and find strong evidence supporting our hypotheses. Namely, rural people articulate far fewer friends online, and those friends live much closer to home. Our results also indicate that the groups have substantially different gender distributions and use privacy features differently. We conclude by discussing design implications drawn from our findings; most importantly, designers should reconsider the binary friend-or-not model to allow for incremental trust-building.” (Eric Gilbert et al.)

Meet Your Peers

“Meeting new people and catching up with old friends is one of my favorite things about attending the IA Summits. The folks in this community are some of the smartest and most welcoming people I know! Alas, while concepts and practices can be clearly conveyed in publications such as Boxes and Arrows, it is very difficult to describe the people behind these ideas in a way that does them justice. Perhaps if they introduced themselves to you.” (Jorge ArangoBoxes and Arrows)

The History of Information Architecture

“Leading-edge organizations are constantly looking for ways to improve their employees’ abilities to innovate and create, and information architecture plays a critical role. Listen as Gartner analyst Whit Andrews speaks with Alex Wright – information architect for the New York Times – about his recent book, Glut.” (Whit Andrews – Gartner Voice)

The User Experience of Software-as-a-Service Applications

“Over the last several years we have seen a dramatic increase in the number of software applications offered over the internet. The ability to release user interface changes on a potentially daily basis has forced user experience professionals to rethink their traditional linear methodologies. With a new set of internet-based usability techniques as well as the remarkable ability to receive real-time, continuous feedback from end users, designers today have the potential to create the most usable and competitive software user interfaces to date.” (Katrina Rhoads Lindholm – ISD Symposium Spring 2007)

Document Engineering and Information Architecture

Complete syllabus with lecture notes and audio recordings – “This course introduces the discipline of Document Engineering: specifying, designing, and deploying electronic documents and information repositories that enable document-centric or information-intensive applications. These applications include web services, information supply chains, single-source publishing, composite applications/virtual enterprises/portals, and so on. Course topics include developing requirements, analyzing existing documents and information sources, conceptual modeling, identifying reusable semantic components, modeling business processes and user interactions, applying patterns to make models more robust, representing models using XML schemas, and using XML models to implement and drive applications. The syllabus contains over 20 short case study examples from different industries, with special emphasis on business-to-business, healthcare and medical informatics, and e-government.” (Robert J. Glushko)

Being Human 2020 PDF Logo

“In March 2007, Microsoft Research organised the ‘HCI 2020’ meeting at the El Bulli Hacienda Hotel near Seville, Spain. The event’s title expressed its key question: what will Human- Computer Interaction (HCI) be like in the year 2020? That question is important because HCI, significant as it was in the late 20th century, has a pivotal part to play in the 21st, when computers will become so pervasive that how humans interact with them will be a crucial issue for society. HCI 2020 produced many ideas, both thrilling and troubling. This report is not a conventional publication of an academic conference but seeks to convey the passion of those ideas, both for the general reader and the HCI practitioner. For the general reader, this is important because knowledge of what the future might be may empower, while ignorance harm. For the HCI practitioner, its purpose is to map out the terrain and suggest new approaches while keeping an eye on the main prize: the embodiment of human values at the heart of computing.” (Microsoft Research) – courtesy of markvanderbeeken

Moving UX into a position of corporate influence: Whose advice really works?

Audio and slides – “An audio recording synchronized to the presentation of slides is now available for my CHI 2007 conference session entitled, ‘Moving UX into a position of corporate influence: Whose advice really works?’ For a sense of how the members of the panel repositioned themselves on stage during the session (which you’ll hear but, of course, not see), read ‘So, whose advice really works?'” (Richard Anderson – riander blog)