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Information Architecture for the World Wide Web: Designing Large-Scale Web Sites, 2nd Edition Second Edition Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0596000356
ISBN-10: 0596000359
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Editorial Reviews


"Full of essential information, this is a book that should be required reading for anyone working with any web technologies." PC Plus, Jan 2003

From the Inside Flap

Praise for Information Architecture for the World Wide Web, 2nd Edition

"It's been well worth the wait! This much expanded second version provides a holistic perspective on information architecture – something that wasn't possible earlier on when the concept was just beginning to be raised in the web space. It will be the starting place and the core reference resource for practicing and future information architects, as well as their managers. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to make their ideas become real, and most importantly, of value to their end-user community." -- Mary Lee Kennedy, Microsoft

"In the first edition, Lou and Peter examined the emergence of a new species of technical professional -- the IA. In this second edition, they expose the complex electronic ecosystem in which IA now exist. With wit, wisdom, and a pinch of whimsy, they give you what you need to be or work with an architect of the wired world." - Bob Boiko, Lecturer, University of Washington iSchool & President, Metatorial Services Inc.

"What's big and throbbing? Your headache. It's caused by the uncontrollable flood of web pages that you have to deal with, day after day. The pain you feel is the result of a web site that lacks structure and is getting more and more out of control. You want relief? The 2nd Edition of Information Architecture for the World Wide Web is the cure." -- John S. Rhodes, WebWord.com -- Industrial Strength Usability

"The world will be a better place when web designers read this book. It's smart, funny, and artfully distills years of the authors' hard-won experience. Information Architecture is unlike any other book on web design I know in that it tackles political/organizational challenges as well as content, structure and user interface. This is not design-lite, but a deep treatment of fundamental issues of information presentation that advances the state of the art. Light years ahead of the competition." -- Bonnie Nardi, co-author of Information Ecologies: Using Technology with Heart, MIT Press, 1999.

"If you are developing large-scale Web sites with a complex information architecture, this book will explain everything you need. Rosenfeld and Morville define the art and science of information architecture. This book is beneficial for both the novice or the experienced professional. Once again, Rosenfeld and Morville have written the Bible of information architecture. This book should be on every Web developer's bookshelf." -Cameron Barrett, Design Technologist, camworld.com

"Clearly written, a powerful use of simple metaphors to make complex points. Restores information management to its rightful place in management thinking." - Dave Snowden, Director of the Cynefin Centre for Organisational Complexity IBM Global Services

"Perhaps the only good thing about the dot.com bust is that it finally gave Lou [Rosenfeld] and Peter [Morville] time to finish their long awaited second edition of THE best book on Web design. As a reward for our patience, they've added tons of things they've learned in the intervening years, expanding it into the definitive book on Information Architecture. If you build Web sites, you need a copy on your bookshelf." - Steve Krug, Author of Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability

"In this definitive text for the emerging profession of information architecture, Rosenfeld and Morville provide a wealth of experience-based examples and guidance for practitioners and students alike." – Gary Marchionini, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


Product Details

  • Paperback: 486 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; Second Edition edition (August 15, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596000359
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596000356
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.3 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,341,432 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
With the second edition, Morville and Rosenfeld have met a pretty significant challenge: surpassing their first book. The new edition is chock full of great new chapters on topics both technical and creative.
By covering subjects like thesauri, CVs, and metadata, while at the same time tackling headfirst "big picture" ideas of information architecture, the two authors are to be commended for writing a book that is at once instructive to advanced practioners yet still recommendable to strategists, designers, programmers, and others who might have only a vague notion of information architecture. And the chapter on business strategy is as good an introduction as I've read in any business book.
This book is the closest anyone has come to a single book addressing all of the complexity and challenges of organizing, structuring, and managing large scale Web sites, and does so with clear, easy-to-read prose eshewing jargon and consultant-speak. Quite an accomplishment, indeed!
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This is a great book to introduce business people to information architecture, for architects to reinforce their skills, and for web designers to principles to apply to site design. The second edition has more information and is more in depth than the first, and is well worth purchasing.
The first three chapters of the book explore what information architecture is and what it is needed. Chapters 4 - 9, the "Basic Principles of Information Architecture" have the most substance. Several chapters bear reading several times, including:
Chapter 5: Organization Systems, Chapter 7: Navigation Systems, Chapter 8: Search Systems and Chapter 9: Thesauri, Controlled Vocabularies, and Metadata
The sections on Process and Methodologyactice, and Organizational fit are all good for people learning about IA, but may be too basic for anyone that does a lot of work or reading in the field. The Education Chapter is already out of date, which is to be expected.
IA for the World Wide Web is a great book, worth reading and worth hanging onto for reference or to use to explain the IA to others.
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I'm the kind of reader that enjoys straight to the point books. As interesting as this book was, I found it rambled and went too deep into how to sell IA to administration, or learn about IA in schools, or what steps should one take to become an information architect, etc. I found it presented ideas, often left the reader at the end of each section with "it depends" or "you'll see what works best for you". Which is fine, but isn't really helpful.

About 100 pages too long, this book should have been boiled down significantly, and cut out all the chapters about promotion of the IA field. The title of the book is "Designing large-scale web sites" not convincing your boss to invest in IA.

Ok, but not worth the money.
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Format: Paperback
If I were to teach a class in Information Architecture on a remote pacific island, and I could only bring one book - this would be THE BOOK.
This is the book which brings students of IA further than any other single book. It is the book that covers the most ground. It is the book You would have killed for when You started as an IA. But it is not really a "how-to" book. It is much more of an "understand the business" book.
The second edition is different from the first edition. It has improved in so many ways. We're talking solid 460 pages packed with practical advice, knowledge supported by experience, and great examples. The Library and Information Science bias that made the first edition a little single sided is not present in this second edition which encompasses the entire field and deals with most aspects of Information Architecture - from presenting search results to making elevator pitches in the world of business strategy.
Information Architecture for the World Wide Web is not one of those books that are backed by a lot of scientific evidence. The advice given in this book is backed by the authority and experience of two of the most widely recognized people in the field. If that counts for You, then this book is for You.
The cover says "designing large scale web sites". This is true. It is not a book about building community sites, and it is not about small e-business sites. This is a book about the big picture on the big projects, but it actually has a lot of relevant input for the building of smaller sites as well.
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Format: Paperback
There are more advanced books for explaining information architecture to someone looking to actually design information systems for the web, but there are few better books for explaining to a manager the value of IA for an organization. The first half of the book seeks to explain the difference good and bad design can have on a user's experience in finding information. Although the examples are at times more cerebral (compared to Jakob Nielsen's Designing Web Usability, who picks websites and suggests how navigation and organization could be changed for a better user experience) the book's value comes from effectively communicating the design vocabulary necessary for an information designer to communicate his or her vision to management.
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