Information mapping(TM)?

Subject: Information mapping(TM)?
From: "Geoff Hart (by way of \"Eric J. Ray\" <ejray -at- raycomm -dot- com>)" <ght -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA>
Date: Thu, 24 Dec 1998 02:46:00 -0700

Hans Lonissen attended a presentation on <<Information Mapping... The
person who gave the presentation mentioned a URL, which I looked at.
It gave me the impression of a combination between Scientology and
Tupperware. (Please don't flame, I'm not pc and besides, I'm

I think you've probably just come up with the finest description of
Information Mapping(TM) that I've ever encountered. Absolutely
marvelous! The Scientology part is that those who sell Information
Mapping(TM) certainly approach this unsavory task with all the polite
tenacity and blind devotion of Scientologists trying to give you a
personality test. And just like Tupperware, it's really quite a
useful idea provided that you don't try to use it for binding books,
raising children, or playing baseball. My main problem with
Information Mapping (TM) is that once you've been infected by it,
you're in the same boat as the carpenter who only has a hammer and
suddenly thinks everything is a nail.

Strictly speaking, Information Mapping(TM) is nothing new, and it
doesn't break any marvelous new ground in information design: it
simply collects the most important principles (e.g., chunking,
sequencing, using headings and white space effectively, consistency)
into a single well-designed package so you don't have to do the work
of researching the topic yourself. If you're the sort of person who
prefers to have concepts fed to you rather than learning them
yourself, it's probably a decent investment. If, like me, you'd
rather "roll your own" solutions, you can learn everything they'll
teach you in an Information Mapping(TM) seminar on your own, for far
less money. And since you learned it yourself, you'll probably
remember more of it... though you'll have to make up your own notes
for future reference. Start with the inexpensive published works of
Robert E. Horn (the book "Mapping hypertext", for example) and then
branch out by reading Karen Schriver's book on Information Design.
Betweent their respective bibliographies, you'll do just fine.

And since you're asking: (TM) is important when talking about
Information Mapping(TM) because they're just a tad proprietary about
their trademark.... may even be an (R) by now for all I know or care.
So use the (TM) religiously to avoid persecution by the more rabid
accolytes... because they have a very lucrative franchise, they tend
to protect it zealously. Of course, I could have just ditched the
name entirely and just talked about "information design", which (to
my knowledge), nobody has trademarked yet... but that wouldn't have
been nearly as much fun or instructional as typing all those (TM)s.
--Geoff Hart @8^{)}
geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca

"Patience comes to those who wait."--Anon.

From ??? -at- ??? Sun Jan 00 00:00:00 0000=

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