Ambient Findability: What We Find Changes Who We Become (英語) ペーパーバック – 2005/10/6
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How do you find your way in an age of information overload? How can you filter streams of complex information to pull out only what you want? Why does it matter how information is structured when Google seems to magically bring up the right answer to your questions? What does it mean to be "findable" in this day and age? This eye-opening new book examines the convergence of information and connectivity. Written by Peter Morville, author of the groundbreaking Information Architecture for the World Wide Web, the book defines our current age as a state of unlimited findability. In other words, anyone can find anything at any time. Complete navigability.
Morville discusses the Internet, GIS, and other network technologies that are coming together to make unlimited findability possible. He explores how the melding of these innovations impacts society, since Web access is now a standard requirement for successful people and businesses. But before he does that, Morville looks back at the history of wayfinding and human evolution, suggesting that our fear of being lost has driven us to create maps, charts, and now, the mobile Internet.
The book's central thesis is that information literacy, information architecture, and usability are all critical components of this new world order. Hand in hand with that is the contention that only by planning and designing the best possible software, devices, and Internet, will we be able to maintain this connectivity in the future. Morville's book is highlighted with full color illustrations and rich examples that bring his prose to life.
Ambient Findability doesn't preach or pretend to know all the answers. Instead, it presents research, stories, and examples in support of its novel ideas. Are we truly at a critical point in our evolution where the quality of our digital networks will dictate how we behave as a species? Is findability indeed the primary key to a successful global marketplace in the 21st century and beyond. Peter Morville takes you on a thought-provoking tour of these memes and more -- ideas that will not only fascinate but will stir your creativity in practical ways that you can apply to your work immediately.
"A lively, enjoyable and informative tour of a topic that's only going to become more important."
--David Weinberger, Author, Small Pieces Loosely Joined and The Cluetrain Manifesto
"I envy the young scholar who finds this inventive book, by whatever strange means are necessary. The future isn't just unwritten--it's unsearched."
--Bruce Sterling, Writer, Futurist, and Co-Founder, The Electronic Frontier Foundation
"Search engine marketing is the hottest thing in Internet business, and deservedly so. Ambient Findability puts SEM into a broader context and provides deeper insights into human behavior. This book will help you grow your online business in a world where being found is not at all certain."
--Jakob Nielsen, Ph.D., Author, Designing Web Usability: The Practice of Simplicity
"Information that's hard to find will remain information that's hardly found--from one of the fathers of the discipline of information architecture, and one of its most experienced practitioners, come penetrating observations on why findability is elusive and how the act of seeking changes us."
--Steve Papa, Founder and Chairman, Endeca
"Whether it's a fact or a figure, a person or a place, Peter Morville knows how to make it findable. Morville explores the possibilities of a world where everything can always be found--and the challenges in getting there--in this wide-ranging, thought-provoking book."
--Jesse James Garrett, Author, The Elements of User Experience
"It is easy to assume that current searching of the World Wide Web is the last word in finding and using information. Peter Morville shows us that search engines are just the beginning. Skillfully weaving together information science research with his own extensive experience, he develops for the reader a feeling for the near future when information is truly findable all around us. There are immense implications, and Morville's lively and humorous writing brings them home."
--Marcia J. Bates, Ph.D., University of California Los Angeles
"I've always known that Peter Morville was smart. After reading Ambient Findability, I now know he's (as we say in Boston) wicked smart. This is a timely book that will have lasting effects on how we create our future.
--Jared Spool, Founding Principal, User Interface Engineering
"In Ambient Findability, Peter Morville has put his mind and keyboard on the pulse of the electronic noosphere. With tangible examples and lively writing, he lays out the challenges and wonders of finding our way in cyberspace, and explains the mutually dependent evolution of our changing world and selves. This is a must read for everyone and a practical guide for designers."
--Gary Marchionini, Ph.D., University of North Carolina
"Find this book! Anyone interested in making information easier to find, or understanding how finding and being found is changing, will find this thoroughly researched, engagingly written, literate, insightful and very, very cool book well worth their time. Myriad examples from rich and varied domains and a valuable idea on nearly every page. Fun to read, too!
--Joseph Janes, Ph.D., Founder, Internet Public Library
Peter Morville is president of Semantic Studios, an information architecture, user experience, and findability consultancy. For over a decade, he has advised such clients as AT&T, IBM, Microsoft, Harvard Business School, Internet2, Procter & Gamble, Vanguard, and Yahoo. Peter is best known as a founding father of information architecture, having co-authored the field's best-selling book, Information Architecture for the World Wide Web. Peter serves on the faculty at the University of Michigan's School of Information and on the advisory board of the Information Architecture Institute. He delivers keynotes and seminars at international events, and his work has been featured in major publications including Business Week, The Economist, Fortune, and The Wall Street Journal. You can contact Peter Morville by email (email@example.com). You can also find him offline at 42.2 N 83.4 W or online at semanticstudios.com and findability.org.
Has this happened yet? No, but with the advent of computers and other searching devices, we are getting closer to the "perfect" search. Another topic discussed in the book is information literacy. Simply put, this is the ability to locate information, evaluate what is found, and decide if it is usable. Is all information reliable? Definitely not. Is some of it worthwhile? Absolutely. The job of the information-literate user is to evaluate and decipher what is reliable and apply it to fit his or her needs.
The discussion continues with a description of new technologies which have emerged that can help searches. Trios, wearable computing, blackberries, and the internet all dot the information landscape, making searching much different than it was a decade or two ago. These technological advances have made it easier than ever to search for information. However, the problem still remains of knowing which parts of the information are useful and applying those parts appropriately.
I read this book as part of the course requirements for a Master's degree course I am enrolled in. I wasn't sure what to expect after seeing the book's cover. The monkey on the front really raised my level of curiosity. This book provides excellent tips and examples of how to correctly search for information. Admittedly, it took a while for the book to "get going", but I did learn a great deal from it. I highly recommend this book to information seekers. It will definitely help the user who is searching for information.
This book went much deeper than I expected. As a disclaimer, I had many of my co-workers laugh when I told them the title of the book I was reading. However, I had a quick response as to what the book contained as the author quickly defines both ambient and findability. The author starts by giving background to how we come to find things. Not just as humans, he takes it to an even smaller scale discussing how ants find their way during their long journeys. Though this may seem odd, it helps to really put things into perspective. How DO we find things? Do we all find things the same way? In relation to the web - what words or phrases do we use to find things? Do we use broad terms or more specific (long tail) terms?
This book is very tough to review, as I felt it was packed with so much information. The only way for me to really elaborate would be to put it into context, and by that time you could have read the book. The information packed in this book has really opened me up to an array of new questions related to searching. Outside of the context of the web, how do people find things? Inside of the web, how do people find things? I constantly monitor our analytics at Barbour Publishing, Inc and watch how people find us, and where they go from there. Did they get the answer they were seeking? Was their search relevant? What terms did they use? What order were the terms? What punctuation is used? What did some of the other similar searches look like? What did their other searches look like? What did the spellings look like? So many aspects to look into - and then refine to make sure people can find the information they are seeking. Sometimes simple `like' queries aren't enough. Sometimes the index needs to be refined to incorporate stopwords, mis-spellings, aliases, and other pertinent information. Understanding the core principles, findings, and research will help you build a strong foundation and core.
I have found this to be extremely valuable and applicable to web development and answering the deeper questions. As stated earlier, this book is rather small in size but packs a big punch content wise. The author avoids `fluff' or trying to tell stories, and simply dives into the core (which is sometimes even scary) - which is often times backed by a significant amount of research and supplemental resources.
Though this book is not directly related to web development - the lessons learned here can be applied to that medium. If you are a web developer, SEO expert, or simply want to know how people find things (and their decision process) - then this a book for you.
The book is very well written, very easy to read, and follows a logical progression.
However, like most techincal publishing houses, O'Reilly does not have enough editors fluent in enough technical areas of expertise to impose order on its authors. The result is that they produce excellent texts for those already familiar with the subject, and dreadful experiences for those hoping for something other than a "Dummies" book.
"Ambient Findability" is no different. The subject is broad, the concepts are deep, and the order is completely lacking. O'Reilly seemed to have exercised no editorial restraint in the publishing of this book - it is andectoal, rambling and repetitive in parts, and generally jumps around (much like the subject of the book), without any common touch points.
The main point of the book is that information is grouped in structured and not so structured ways on the web, and being able to "find" information is predicated on how it is percieved by other parts of the web. This already is a vast ocean of space to cover. 180 pages with a lot of graphics is bound to be light, but add on rambling discourse, and you can only swallow 20-30 pages at a time, before bed.
I really believe the author is a great mind on this subject. He could do much better w/ a well disciplined editor.