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Nov 03, 2002: The Big News

Bloug's been quiet of late. One excuse: an incredibly stupid travel schedule assembled by yours truly (greetings from Atlanta!). Much more interesting excuse: spending lots of time as part of a great team that's been developing the first and only professional association of information architects. The Asilomar Institute for Information Architecture officially launches Monday!

Yes, the name's a bit mysterious. In a nutshell, Asilomar is a conference center near Monterey, California; an incredibly stunning (and reasonably priced) place for a weekend retreat to hash over what it means for information architects to organize. And yes, we're calling it an institute rather than a society or association; "institute" seems to carry less baggage.

Why am I bothering? And why should you care? Because:

  • The AIfIA presents an opportunity to create a new kind of professional association, taking advantage of information technology to deliver relevant and innovative services cheaply and effectively to a burgeoning global professional community.
  • It will add a degree of legitimacy to the profession, and frankly, many of us are tired of other, established fields not taking information architecture seriously.
  • It will provide infrastructure to enable groups of volunteers to do wonderful, amazing, and useful things to improve the profession.
  • It's fun to collaborate with other information architects, something most of us don't get to do every day.
  • The information architecture profession will continue to grow, and an association of some sort is therefore an inevitability. Many of us want to be a part of it, and are impatient; so why wait?

Maybe a simpler way to look at all this is that we're building on many of the ideas put forth at info-arch.org, but now we have an actual (and incorporated) organization to carry them forward.

So that's my pitch to you. Please spread the word, volunteer, and become a charter member (only US$30 the first year). And please visit the site (www.aifia.org) and consider what we're trying to do. If you see something you like, get involved; if you see stuff you don't like, this is your organization and you can fix what needs fixing.

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Comment: David Rush (Nov 5, 2002)

Interesting conversation going on at Metafilter about www.aifia.org

http://www.metafilter.com/comments.mefi/21365

Comment: Jeff Stuit (Nov 7, 2002)

Lou - congrats and much thanks for the hard work you and the others involved have put into launching this!

OK - why was the institute named after a conference center in Monterey?

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