Tag Archives: information

The other thing wrong with the DIKW pyramid

I took a side swipe at the DIKW (Data Information Knowledge Wisdom) pyramid the other day, and included a link to David Weinberger’s excellent debunking of it, which concludes: The real problem with the DIKW pyramid is that it’s a pyramid. The image that knowledge (much less wisdom) results from applying finer-grained filters at each… Read More »

Findability is a Content Problem, not a Search Problem

Findability is a constant theme in content strategy and technical communications, yet it  seems to me that people often treat findability as a problem existing outside the content. Findability is addressed using SEO tactics and by devising sophisticated top-down navigational aids, such as taxonomies and faceted navigation, but it is seldom seen as issue to… Read More »

The Tyranny of the Terrible Troika: Rethinking Concept, Task, and Reference

Tom Johnson’s blog post Unconscious Meaning Suggested from the Structure and Shape of Help, includes a graphic showing three shapes of content: Tom Johnson’s “Shapes of Help” graphic. These three shapes are meant to represent the DITA topic triad of concept, task, and reference. I didn’t get it. As I said in a comment on Tom’s blog, I… Read More »

Approximation, Correction, and Tech Comm

At the Battle of Balaclava, an order reached a brigade of light cavalry to take the Russian guns. The general who sent the order was referring to a small artillery position that had been abandoned. But the commander of the light brigade could not see those guns. He could only see the main Russian battery… Read More »

Too little information

Were I asked to characterize the human condition in a sentence, I might choose this: to be human is to make decisions with too little information. All our decisions, great and small, are taken without adequate information: getting married, buying real estate, having children (this especially), saving for retirement, choosing the best route for a… Read More »

The Impatient Reader

The defining characteristic of the the modern reader is impatience. This is not a matter of moral or intellectual decline in the Internet age; it is simply a matter of supply and demand. No one willingly treks down to the village well with buckets in their hands once they have indoor plumbing.