« Windows to Success... Take a peek if you dare! | Main | Blueprints for Success are Provided by the User »

Organization? Ahhhh, The A Type Personality in Me Loves This.

In our chapter, there was so much great information on how we can make this website a success. The main issue I see as a problem is classification. This issue encompasses all the subtopics like organization, heterogeneity, perspectives, politics, schemes, structure, and social classification. How will we classify all of our bookmarked areas so our website will be full of the correct information with an easy browsing system?

Labelling, classification schemes, and cataloging are all parts of organizing information in a way that is useful to all who visit. (Morville & Rosenfeld, p. 54) . Here is my take on how this can be successful, of course, keep in mind I am no expert by any stretch of the imagination, but I have visited quite a few sites and some are just plain crappy. I think we are all on the same page when I say we want ours to be wonderful, so here is my opinion.

Ambiguity and heterogeneity may be good ideas. I thought we had way too many labels on del.icio.us, but this could work towards the ambiguity and heterogeneity on a sub-topic level. Morville & Rosenfeld say "The heterogeneous nature of web sites makes it difficult to impose any single structured organization system on the content." ( p. 56). Classifying all of this information into a main group of topics is going to be the hardest thing to do.

To classify this information on a main topic level, we should look at schemes like the exact organization scheme (Morville & Rosenfeld, p. 59). I know the topic scheme shows under the ambiguous scheme but I think we can use it as an exact also. Since our website will have a more defined aspect than that of, say, Google with its total ambiguous style, the exact organization scheme with some ambiguity included seems to be the best answer. A chronological scheme may also work, but maybe as a subtopic.

I am not sure we need to concern ourselves with task scheme since we will not include a comment section or any interactive aspect. Our audience scheme, per Krista, will start with the University, however these audience schemes break a site into smaller, audience-specific mini-sites which I cannot see a use for yet (Morville & Rosenfeld, p. 65). Metaphors scheme might be fun to play with. As for using multiple schemes (hybrids scheme), except for a few cases, Morville and Rosenfeld state, "...when you start blending elements of multiple schemes, confusion often follows, and solutions are rarely (balanced)" (p. 67).

Organization seems like it will follow right along with whatever scheme we use. Using the top-down approach sounds feasible. "Because hierarchies provide a simple and familiar way to organize information, they are usually a good place to start the information and architechture process" (Morville & Rosenfeld, p. 69). This is where Thinkature was supposed to come in, if it worked, (sorry Krista, but it was a bear!). We have to think about a good balance in breadth and depth: do not give too many options, group info at page level, USER TESTING! (Morville & Rosenfeld, p. 71). Hypertext may work to lead us from a topic to a list of all the subtopics.

Anyway, I feel I have just rambled because, again, this is all new to me until I can use it and apply it. I really cannot wait to see what others are saying and how this thing ends up. My parents are excited, my kids are excited, even my dog, Brutus, wags his tail every time I mention the words "Information Architecture".


I love your dog and I don't even know him. You should take a video of you saying "information architecture" and him wagging his tail. We can post on our Facebook site. We could even send it to Morville and Rosenfeld!

Regarding the tagging cloud: I think it clearly demonstrates the need for good labeling systems. Many of the tags refer to the same information but vary by a single letter, mark of punctuation, etc. Reconciling those differences will help pare down the list. Reaching a consensus on labels for the remaining categories may be more difficult though. Like you, I've never done anything like this before, so I am anxious to see how this task--and all the others, for that matter--will be accomplished. In fact, writing about the principles and processes presented in the readings was difficult for me because I do not have a good mental image of things like labeling systems or hybrid architecture. Much of this is still invisible to me. So, I'll just wag my tail and move forward, too.

Hi Amber, thanks for commenting on my post, and I'm glad you think I have the right attitude. Yay! I think we might have the same personality maybe?...I've heard that I have a Type A personality. I'm not sure but I've heard it, and now I read that you have one. Anyways, whatever personality we have, each type of personality contributes to the group as a whole, and you'll definitely contribute. Most importantly is your enthusiasm for the website. I could tell that you are very enthusiastic by reading what you had written: "I really cannot wait to see what others are saying and how this thing ends up. My parents are excited, my kids are excited, even my dog, Brutus, wags his tail every time I mention the words 'Information Architecture'. " I love it!