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Aug 23, 2007: Lou: EIA adieu

Hmmm, the vowels really ganged up on the consonants in that title...

I'm now 95% certain that this fall will be the last time I'll be offering my enterprise information architecture seminar. It's not that I think we've figured out all of the challenges in fixing large organizations' information architectures. Not in the least; EIA, along with multi-lingual, multi-regional, multi-cultural IA, are the largest remaining IA frontiers. If anything, enterprise challenges are going to continue to grow as our information grows and ROTs (becomes Redundant, Outdated, and Trivial).

My reasons for discontinuing the seminar are purely personal; over the past five years I've taught it about 35 times, and while that degree of practice can put one in a really comfortable place, I'd like a new challenge. I've found that challenge with internal search analytics—which, BTW, could be the enterprise information architect's best friend—and I plan on teaching a search analytics seminar during the first part of 2008 (which should time nicely with the book's publication).

Steve Krug and I will continue touring together, and he already has changed his seminar; starting this September, he'll be teaching low-cost/no-cost do-it-yourself usability testing. I'd be very sad if I didn't get to spend time with Steve five or six times a year.

Speaking of our upcoming schedule, the first deadline for an early bird discount is around the corner (September 5). Here are all the dates and locations:

  • Chicago, IL: September 21 (early registration by September 5)
  • Seattle, WA: October 21 (early registration by September 28)
  • Washington, DC: November 21 (early registration by October 19)

So if you've always wanted to attend my EIA seminar, this is likely your last chance. And yes, because it's a good seminar and because Iris occasionally needs a new pair of shoes, I'll continue teaching in-house EIA seminars on request.

PS While we're on the subject of EIA, here's some really good reading from Boxes and Arrows.

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Comment: James Robertson (Aug 23, 2007)

Thanks for all the hard work you've put into the EIA space Lou!

It's great to keep things fresh, though, so I'm sure you'll enjoy the challenges of creating (and presenting!) a new workshop.

Good luck with it all!

Cheers, James

Comment: mantruc (Aug 23, 2007)

Congrats on the new step and best of luck with the new seminar.

I still can't help asking you about something that caught my eye from your post... Do you really think that IA can be multi-lingual, regional or cultural? Doesn't it always depend on the particular context? IMHO one size-fits-all-IA is unreachable. Maybe I understood wrongly.

Comment: Lou (Aug 23, 2007)

James and Javier, thanks for the good wishes!

Javy, I'm basically saying that it's really, really hard to develop a single information architecture for a multi-lingual, multi-regional, multi-cultural organization. In that sense, I think we're saying the same thing. But I do think we should try--in many cases, a single architecture is required--and I do think we can do much better than we have.

I wish I could get some smart globe-trotting IA to write a Rosenfeld Media book on the subject. People that come to mind include Peter van Dijck, Jorge Arango, Livia Labate, Javier Velasco... Hey, that's you!

Comment: Livia Labate (Aug 23, 2007)

This is a milestone in IA history Lou, your workshop is one of those things we just assume happens all the time :) Good luck on the new track of work, I know it's already getting really big!

Re the global IA stuff *sigh* passed the batton to Peter and Jorge (who I think are actually working on it now!). I'm now officially an East-Coast, Innie, Big-IA (talk about categorizing and going opposite ways from global IA!)

Comment: Livia Labate (Aug 23, 2007)

This is a milestone in IA history Lou, your workshop is one of those things we just assume happens all the time :) Good luck on the new track of work, I know it's already getting really big!

Re the global IA stuff *sigh* passed the batton to Peter and Jorge (who I think are actually working on it now!). I'm now officially an East-Coast, Innie, Big-IA gal (talk about categorizing and going opposite ways from global IA!)

Comment: mantruc (Aug 23, 2007)

Thanks for the invite Lou, someday we'll work on a book for sure. Not sure if that's my strong area though.

best
javier

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