Computation is everywhere, and so are search and interaction. It’s time to move beyond the computer screen to design information space in these new ubiquitous ecologies.
An ingenious collection of medium-independent heuristics to guide the complex decisions that lie ahead … a map to the future of cross-channel design.
This chapter introduces a holistic vision of user experience and information architecture.
Contemporary phisical-digital ecosystems surpass our capability to fully understand and predict their behavior: openness and unpredictability are emerging patterns challenging the design of today. Embracing ambiguity — embracing the possibility of not understanding exactly how the pieces fit together — means designing systems that surpass our expectations of them; it means leaving the idea of the information architect as a producer of well-defined artifacts and embracing on the contrary that of the information architect as an enabler.
Information architecture isn’t about designing websites anymore. Better, isn’t about single products or artifacts anymore. The scenario in which information architecture operated in the late 1990s has eroded its channel-specific connotation as a website-only, inductive activity, so as to become a multi-disciplinary sense-making cultural construct concerned with the structural integrity of meaning in complex, information-based cross-channel ecosystems.
Hick-Hyman law offers important guidelines in order to design for choice. Nevertheless, even if its first formulation dates back to the 1950s, the law was scarcely applied in interaction design because of some misunderstandings: a comparison with classification theory provides useful insights.