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Northwest Ohio ACM chapter

We have successfully revived the local ACM chapter - NWOACM. We updated our by-laws and created a "revitalization plan" and submitted them to ACM. The last record ACM had of any activity was in the mid 1980's, so one can argue whether we revived the old chapter or made a new one. We have the same name, and it looked like less paperwork to revive than to create anew. So let's call it a revival.

Now the tough work - executing on the plan. As you can see from some of the our thoughts on the web site, HCI, usability, and web design and user experience will be a common topic for the local chapter. That is, assuming that I can help us pull that part off!

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Task-based navigation

"Task-based navigation," Poster presentation with IBM colleagues at the 2005 IA Summit, March 2005. Download - warning, very large file, may want to save to disk.

About the navigation stress test

About the Navigation Stress Test.


  • The idea of a navigation stress test was introduced in my September 12, 1997 Web Review article that evaluated (Internet Archive copy)
  • First public presentation was at the "User-Centered Design" panel at Seybold Seminars, New York, 1998. Jeffrey Veen described that panel as "common sense".
  • The test was incorporated into various Argus Associates reports and presentations from 1999-2001.
  • The Art & Science of Web Design uses the stress test 3 basic questions to describe "The Three-Panel Layout" (starting on page 47).
  • I further refined the test for various "Web Navigation Discussion" presentations in 2001/2002. The largest crowd was at a Puget Sound SIGCHI meeting.
  • Mentioned in Chapter 7/Navigation, pages 111-112, of the 2nd edition of Information Architecture for the World Wide Web. And on pages 48 and 120 in the 3rd edition of IAWWW.
  • Worksheet translated into Spanish by Christian F. Leal Reyes, December 2004 (but I cannot find a working copy any more).

Similar Work

These are similar navigation reviews that were developed separately (as far as I can tell).

  • Don't Make Me Think includes a "trunk test" (starting on page 87 of the first edition).
  • James Lewin's Rapid Web Development in IBM developerWorks, September, 2001, has a section on printing out pages and reviewing them for common interface problems.

Related Research

Michael L. Bernard, Software Usability Research Laboratory, Wichita State University, has done research on where users expect to see certain elements of the page (like home, internal and external links).


"Bread crumb" for online navigation

The first published use of the term "bread crumb" for online navigation was in 1987 by Mark Bernstein. One early reference is The bookmark and the compass: orientation tools for hypertext users, SIGOIS Bulletin, 1988.

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Breadcrumb research agenda

At the 2002 IA Summit, I proposed a research agenda (a series of questions, actually) for breadcrumbs. Some of the research is starting to roll in. Links that address this research agenda:

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Links to more on faceted browsing

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Faceted browsing

I did 2 presentations about faceted browsing in 2004.

July 8, 2004, "Faceted Browsing - How User Interfaces Represent and Benefit from a Faceted Classification System", SOASIST meeting, Dayton, Ohio.

  • Discover what is "faceted browsing" and other Web-focused terms for old ideas
  • Dissect faceted browsing examples from IBM,, MSN, Forrester and others
  • Discuss faceted browsing research questions about user interface design, information architecture and faceted classification systems

February 28, 2004, "Fun with faceted browse", IA Summit 2004, Austin, Texas. Introduced the term to the IA community (and there turned out to be a whole series of presentations on this same topic).

Selected slides from the presentation (click for larger version)

Top, middle and destination pages dissected

IBM finder dissected

Flamenco dissected

MSN dissected

DC2003 dissected

Forrester dissected dissected

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Information architecture: From wire frames to business strategy

"Information architecture: From wire frames to business strategy," October 26, 2004 at MSU Usability and accessibility conference. My introduction to information architeture, some of its deliverables, and its larger impact on the business.

The Race for First: Siebel and SAP

In the July 10 (2004) INSIDE 1to1 email newsletter, the lead article is about SAP and Siebel competing in the CRM software space.

One quote of note: "You cannot have a product that is too usable. CRM is hard. You have to think of the business outcome and make it a goal that is approachable and applicable to the people that have to use it."

Admin note: this was originally blogged in 2004 at my account. I moved the entry here in 2006 and took that old blog down.

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Information Architecture & Personalization

My chapter "An information architecture perspective on personalization" has just been published in the book Designing personalized user experiences for eCommerce.

  • Chapter: IA perspective on personalization (550K PDF)

For the CHI 2003 workshop

Material prepared for the CHI 2003 workshop Designing Personalized User Experiences for eCommerce: Theory, Methods, and Research.

  • My position paper (260K PDF)
  • My presentation (870K PPT)

Laundry list of links, for now


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