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flrimg4.jpg Your are here: Knowledge > What is: Information Architecture (IA)?
What is:

Architecture (IA)?

How does:
  An IA fit into a
web team?
What is:
  User Interface Design
What is:
  Web Positioning
What is:
  The Golden Ratio


Information architecture is a combination of organizing a site's content into categories, or identifying a task sequence or process, and then creating an interface to support those categories, sequence, or process. It stems from traditional architecture, which is made up of architectural programming and architectural planning.

Architecture can and should be an extremely collaborative and iterative process, which evolves somewhat organically in as much structure that can be defined up-front as possible.

Viewed as a process, information architecture is often seen as containing four steps: investigation, analysis, design, and implementation.
Information Architecture Defined
The combination of organization, labeling and navigation schemes within an information system.
The structural design of an information space to facilitate task completion and intuitive access to content.
The art and science of structuring and classifying web sites and intranets to help people find and manage information.
An emerging discipline and community of practice focused on bringing principles of design and architecture to the digital landscape.
3 Circles of Information Architechure

Context: Regardless of whether you're developing for a school, library, museum, non-profit, business or any other group, your information architecture must be aligned with the goals and culture of the organization.

Content: Consider the types of information that will address the goals of the organization and website. What documents, applications, resources and data do users need? How should this information be organized?

Users: Who will be using the materials at the website? What are their needs and interests? What's their reading level and background? What experiences do they have with this type of information?

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