The Association for Information Science and Technology
Special Interest Group: Information Architecture
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Information Architecture and Architects Defined


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Stacy Surla, Membership Officer for SIG-IA, has written two important definitions:

"Information architecture (IA) is the art, science, and business of organizing information so that it makes sense to people who use it.

"Information architects are the members of the team who choreograph the complex relationships among all the elements that make up an information space. Just a very small range of examples of applications in modern information technology: Web sites, business software, interactive voice response systems, and interactive CD-ROM titles."

So where did it all start? Avi Rappaport found a recent article in the NY Times (May 6, 2001) by William Safire.

"The magazine Architectural Record recently interviewed Richard Saul Wurman, who said: "I invented the term information architect in 1975, when I was national chairman of the A.I.A. convention in Philadelphia. It was called 'The Architecture of Information.' Now I would say that somewhere between 20,000 and 100,000 people in the U.S. have information architect on their business cards.")

You are not alone.


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Updated March 16, 2001 | Copyright 2001 David R. Austen