Organizing Information


Take inventory of your information. This step essentially amounts to collecting relevant information about your site. Spreadsheets help. The type of information one should collect: URL, writers working on the pages, general content, titles, and status/decisions concerning the information in question.


Lynch says hierarchical organization is a virtual necessity for organizing on the web. Hierarchy is describe here as moving from general information down to specific information. Forming categories for information allows you to chunk information and organize by relevance.


One of the biggest challenges in organizing information is deciding on classification, or a controlled vocabulary. Includes:


Lynch suggests considering your primary objectives and goals before settling on a specific organizational paradigm. Different types of sites are useful for different things. It is important to note that designers often have prejudices for structure and organization methods, but these are prejudices obliviously don't always help the designer plan for an optimized organizational pattern.

Card Sorting

Card sorting is a sort of user testing technique which asks team members or users to sort a body of cards with categories written on them based on what seems logical or intuitive. Sometimes users are asked to come up with new names for categories - in this sense does card sorting ask for taxonomical insight from potential users? Card sorting utilizes the "wisdom of crowds" approach to organization.
Remember to chunk information. This ties into considerations about length.

Site Structure

Do not make a confusing web of links, says Lynch. This is interesting, especially since for this class we are writing on a Wiki which seems to violate this advice. I'm probably wrong, though.

efficient web design is matter of balancing the relation of menu items on your home page with more specific content pages. hierarchy of menus.
Search bars are amazing, and this section of Lynch's reading addresses the design philosophy contradiction I stated above. Search option is basically necessary when your site has many pages, such as this Wiki. It would be tedious and difficult to navigate through trails of links on this wiki to reach desired information.


Info Architecture


site diagrams help visualize the intended organizational concepts for the site and allows you to share and communicate with others who will be working with the site. Elements include but are not limited to:
Two variations: simple for general use, and more complex for further web development purposes.
Adobe Illustrator, Microsoft Visio, Concept Draw, Omni Graffe. Use this software.

A good site diagram helps programmers with their job, as the intended structure translates well from diagrame to file directory.


Wireframes are rough outlines of how typical web page on a site would appear. It helps people focus on strategic goals without being consumed with speculation of the visual layers of web design. I;d say that diagrams are macro web design and wireframes are micro web design, if that makes any sense.

Where to put things

It's interesting that Lynch write about the middle and corners and rule of thirds for home page design, because modern websites, especially the ones tooled for marketing purposes, use massive images in the center of their home pages.
Most of web content should probably accommodate "reading gravity"
Research shows that users have essentially become habituated to expect where certain elements might appear on web pages.
What is that picture used for E-rhetoric?
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