The Information Architecture Institute
A conference on designing
complex information spaces of all kinds.
New York City, October 4 and 5, 2007

Conference survey feedback visualized on Many Eyes

Martin Wattenberg and Fernanda Viegas gave us an update on the Many Eyes project at IDEA 2007. Upon hearing about the tag cloud feature we uploaded attendee answers to a post-conference survey to give it a try:

tag cloud of survey question from IDEA survey

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Sylvia Harris’s slides on Wayfinding at New York Presbyterian Hospital

Inspired by this presentation by Sylvia Harris, I went out and did some field research at two hospitals in my Charlotte neighborhood.

Carolinas signage

I found that both organizations were doing a fine job of planning the information architecture and experience design of external signage and supporting materials for visitors and patients. Only a few signs reminded me of the New York Presbyterian Hospital before Sylvia’s help.

don't try to bring your cat to the hospital

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IDEA conference slides from Mike Kuniavsky

Mike Kuniavsky put a PDF version of his slides here.

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new Michael Wesch videos from IDEA 2007

Michael Wesch, the opening keynote at IDEA last week, introduced two new videos he produced. He’s now made them publicly available.

A Vision of Students Today


Information R/evolution


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WSJ has one answer to the “what the hell do we call ourselves?” question…

In our last hour at IDEA on Friday we all moved close to the stage and sat in the front rows in Tishman Auditorium at Parsons New School of Design. We talked about the experience shared and knowledge created at IDEA 2007. This whiteboard summarized the concepts and discussions that flowed from two great days of talks by some of the foremost designers, information architects, and researchers in the field.

Bullet point number three from our concluding discussion is “what the hell do we call ourselves?” — this topic continues to be a recurring theme in IA circles and was touched upon in the pre-conference workshops with David Bishop and Paul Gould from MAYA Design.

Wayfinders was the answer provided by this Wall Street Journal article today (free access for 7 days). While it focuses on the work of a single firm in designing user experiences at airports around the country. The firm mentioned in the article, Carter & Burgess, describes itself as a full-service, multi-disciplined, consulting firm offering services in planning, engineering, architecture, construction management, and related areas. Not as succinct as the one word Journal description for sure.

Thank you to all who attended IDEA 2007, and if you couldn’t make it to NYC last week, I hope you’ll plan to attend in 2008. Stay tuned to this blog for location and date information. Additionally, we will be posting podcasts from the conference soon, and slides from speakers as they release them for publication. In the meantime, for more IDEA 2007 photos, check out our official Flickr group and photo collections from various artists.

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Pre-conference gathering to see Helvetica tonight!

HELVETICA is showing at 6:30 p.m. tonight. Meet up with other IDEA attendees at the IFC box office on 323 6th Ave. at West 3rd St. at 6:15 p.m.

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Contest winner!

IDEA is happy to announce that Christopher Fahey and his blog have won the blogger contest. Christopher will receive a free registration to the Conference.
Thanks for posting IDEA to your blog!

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Reminder IDEA starts in 8 days! New 30% discount offer on IDEA with Web 2.0 Bootcamp from Web 2.0 University

IDEA 2007 is coming to NYC, October 3-5. We’ve also got a fantastic promotion available for people who want to attend IDEA and Web 2.0 Bootcamp on October 2, in NYC.web2u_r2_c2.png

Web 2.0 Bootcamp leads you through a deep exploration of the latest ideas, business models, trends, and techniques behind Web 2.0 with a special emphasis on proven, actionable methods for creating new online
products and services – or transforming existing ones – using a Web 2.0 model.

If you want to attend both events, you will receive 30% off regular registration prices for both Web 2.0 University & IDEA 2007 – if you already registered for IDEA, you can still take advantage of the Web 2.0 Bootcamp discount by purchasing an upgrade. Click here to register or for more information visit Web 2.0 University.

Also, don’t forget about our great IDEA group discount - we’re offering a special group rate. Bring your team! Groups of 5 or more receive an additional 10% off. For instance, a group of IAI members, each registration is only $450.00. A group of 5 or more non-IAI members pays only $540.00 per individual. Register here and just choose Group from the ticket list.

Or why not join IAI as a group and get a great discount for all your members:
http://web.memberclicks.com/mc/page.do?sitePageId=43667&orgId=ii

Want to mix and match non-member and member tickets or learn more about IDEA discounts and group membership? Contact <membership@iainstitute.org>. Feel free to pass this message on to your colleagues and groups you think would be interested.

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Storytelling in the City: An Interview with Jake Barton

JakeTelling stories to strangers is not something that most people seek to do. But finding these stories, encouraging them from people in unlikely scenarios, and making the experience enjoyable, is exactly what Jake Barton aims to do.

Barton, through his design studio Local Projects, seeks to encourage the telling of stories in public spaces. In projects that account for high-tech, low-tech, and everything in between, his studio is currently working on projects from the a cellphone tour of the Statue of Liberty to a memorial of the September 11th attacks. And many of the projects happen in Barton’s own backyard—New York City.

IDEA talked with Barton about his work in New York, and some of his plans for the upcoming conference.

IDEA Q: Is it important for you to be here, in New York, doing the work that you do? Does the city itself provide a backdrop or inspiration?

Personally, I think New York is a phenomenal place to make participatory media, as the urban experience is about collective participation—with its crowded streets, with dense clusters of activity from hot dog vendors to hip-hop groups. I especially like that “normalizing” of behavior (i.e., yelling at other New Yorkers) is typical—it makes the New York experience one that is contingent on sharing with others.

IDEA Q: As a resident of New York yourself, what’s it like to have to use the experiences you design (passing by the Story Corps Booth in Grand Central Terminal, for example)?

Its really gratifying. Local Projects’ name comes from the classic Tip O’Neill quote that all politics is local. For us, design is local, steeped in the specific conditions and challenges of a site, client, or audience.

By building things in our hometown, we get consistent feedback and response, and can gauge how the projects and their meanings evolve over time. I’ve gotten “shushed” more than once in my own movies, and its very heart-warming.

IDEA Q: Where do you look for inspiration or direction outside the field of design?

Well, it depends on what you consider design, but mostly I listen to the radio. “RadioLab” from WNYC is a brilliant communicator—The Simpsons meets NOVA. “This American Life” has a consistent knack for mixing the everyday experience with profound larger meanings. And even though our design work is done, I love “StoryCorps,” each story is a jewel.

IDEA Q: What should the audience remember about your talk when they go back to their desks on Monday morning?

That you need to have a point of view about what you want the audience to do, learn, be, achieve, and dream through your work. And that making design functional and beautiful can be done and done well.

IDEA Q: Can you describe what you’ll be talking about at IDEA in just one word?

Freedom.

~ Liz Danzico

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The IDEA 2007 social network is live on CrowdVine…

While Social Network Portability is coming soon, for now IDEA conference attendees can join a network just for the conference here: IDEA 2007 on Crowdvine

This is a great place to post your picture and conference related blog feed, flickr photos, del.icio.us links, and more. IDEA attendees can use this social network to meet other people with similar interests, and plan outings in NYC with other IDEA attendees.

Never been to MOMA? Start a thread on Crowdvine and encourage others to join your outing.

Want to try the latest in “molecular mixology” ? Publish a time and location on CrowdVine and befriend others before you show up in NYC.

Anyone can join, and we encourage New Yorkers to provide assistance to those who are coming from out of town on local dining spots, accomodations, and great things to do in the city.

Thanks, and have fun!

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