ia play

the good life in a digital age

why ia play?

I’ve got a bee in my bonnet about information architecture and play. Not necessarily an obvious association. Information architects have a reputation for working in grey-scale. The community contains lots of ex-librarians. Content audits aren’t the most exhilarating of activities. Maybe one of these generalisations is where the thing about information architects and ‘seriousness’ came from. But play just keeps coming up as a theme in my professional life, and I’m pretty sure I’m an information architect.

The theme got my attention when we were looking for ways to stop web producers being bored to tears in content management tutorials. The resulting ‘metadata games’ got us to Vancouver, and into Jess McMullin’s presentation ‘Game Changing‘. Back in London at Digital Futures, Pat Kane presented the Play Ethic and a theme took hold.

At the IA Summit in Las Vegas last month the connection between IAs and playful behaviour started off looking weak. The intriguing tutorial ‘Learning Interaction Design from Las Vegas’ was cancelled due to ‘lack of interest’ and at the lunches all the IAs grumbled about being stuck in the gaming capital of the world. The theme was, however, saved by nForm’s masterful UX trading cards, the piece de resistance of both playful IA and of encouraging the shy to spontaneously and enthusiastically interact.

More on all this later…

Written by Karen

April 23rd, 2007 at 6:02 am

Posted in inspiration