Experiential-goals and browsing modes


We use many schemes to organize information. Some information architects and information designers usually reach for the hierarchical systems, alpha-numerical systems and other tools to organize information.  These tools may be great for some users in some contexts but they are not the only solutions for all the challenges.

There are contexts that require emotional organization. In these contexts people overlook labels, and hierarchical organization and first look for “feeling”, “style”, “tone” or other experience-based categorization.

For an example of this type of organization system look at the way you look for a birthday card at the market.

Some people may be looking for a humorous card, a sentimental one, or an irreverent one. They walk from collection to collection until they find the collection that expresses the desired “emotional style”.

Once they have located the right “emotional category” they begin to look for the labels: “mother”, “co-worker” etc

This is an example where emotional-style may take precedence over traditional organizational schemes.

Other examples: The way that books are organized in bookstores (humor, sci-fi, horror etc)


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