in Information Architecture

How Search Amplifies Enterprise Collaboration

There’s so much good stuff in this post by Christian Buckley. It’s about enterprise collaboration, but his points apply to issues of findability generally. The central idea that sticks out to me: context is key to findability, and social interactions are great sources of contextual cues. As Buckley points out, though, context is mostly missing from modern search and navigation.

I also love this comment from Steven Flinn summing up the different modes of finding:

  1. Follow — when you are aware of sources of generally relevant information
  2. Search — when you are aware that you have a need for some information now, but don’t know where it is
  3. Discovery (i.e., recommendations) — when you have a need for some information now, but are not even aware you need it and/or that it exists.