It was a hot August NYC IA Salon in Park Slope. We talked all about Topic Maps, with Kathryn Brown speaking about the application of a topic map database for the Columbia American History Online project. The discussion touched on visualization and interconnectedness (including side discussion about James Burke, Linklater and friendster). Afterward we were treated to impressions of Shrub and Camille Paglia. Mike captures the event on his SK.
The Kabalarian site has a searchable list of baby names that might come in handy if you're having a baby. I actually used it today to look up names to go with some web design personas I'm creating. Browsing names by category (e.g. American, African-American, etc.) is useful.
So I'm doing a little blogging on iaslash once again. Guess I just had some interesting links to share once again. Maybe I'm getting interested again because these are LIS resources. I dunno.
I actually spent 15 minutes to modify the GraphViz SiteMap Generator so that it will produce working SVG Diagrams like this.. Have to figure out how to specify the font size and overlap options in the SVG file, however because the text on the boxes is enormous.
The basic fix I did in this version was to go through the SVG that GraphViz generates and remove an HTML comment produced in the file. PHP I used came from this thread about using PCRE library to remove HTML comments with PHP:
$infile= preg_replace('//', '', $infile);
Thomas on Matt - Matt picks up on the failure of navigation and points to similar conversations to ones I had with Stewart that turned me to look for something other than navigation as a means to build information structures. Each user approaches information with two of their own receptors, cognitive and sensory receptors. The cognitive elements include vocabulary and rhetoric (essentially writing style). The sensory include visual elements, which include color, texture, and layout. Layout includes the visual structure and context given through proximity. These two seem to have paralells to Andrew Dillon's semantic spatial model, but I want to know more about his model.
Matt discusses the problems with navigation consistancy at the BBC sites. Here is where navigation gets in the way, as browsing structures is a better term and less restrictive. The user needs a means to find other information that is related or provides context to the information the see on their screens. If there is some attraction to the information infront of the user they often believe what which they seek will be close by if the information is grouped by like information. Much like a market where produce is grouped together, as they are like products. ]]>
I wrote an interface to graphviz in PHP that takes a pipe delimitted file and converts it to a site map. Sample files to look at:
Going to work a bit at adding more options, e.g. ability to select shape and line colors, font size, and page size.
Was held in my house tonight. What do you get in return when you host an IA Salon? A lot of moments for shared knowledge and experience and a ton of yummy left over food!
I'm trying to put together a collection of good examples of advanced search screens that present a lot of search options.
- MerckMedicus -- presents a lot of source options in a 2 column table. The numbering of steps helps guide you through.
- Google -- I'm not sure I really love Google's advanced search, but it is servicable. It presents a lot of options in small space, but the second box of search options is overwhelming and it's hard to follow the line left to right from label to drop down menu.