Blog 2 – Content Management Systems

1. What is a Content Management System (CMS)? Describe the main characteristics of a CMS. Why might you use a CMS?

A CMD is computer application that allows publishing, editing and modifying content, organizing, deleting as well as maintenance from a central interface.

2. List five well known CMSs.

  • Drupal
  • WordPress
  • Joomla
  • Concrete5
  • Magento

3. What is an open source CMS? Describe the main characteristics of an open source CMS.

An open source CMS is a free to use CMS that is modified by a community of programmers the code better and the software easier to use, it has a low or no cost, pre-made modules, themes and flexibility.
4. Describe the pros and cons of the following approaches to web development:
a. Manual creation (in HTML)

Pros -Highly customizable and tailor-able. Higher level of security. Less code.

Cons – Difficult to implement correctly. Requires experience.

b. Commercial CMS

Pros – Specialist Support, Security.

Cons – Cost ,Constraints.
c. Open source CMS

Pros – Low to no cost, plug-ins, easy Install.

Cons – No guaranteed bug fixes, security issues
d. Free CMS

Pros – Free, themes and templates, only minor experience required.

Cons – Limited functionality, saturated code can cause lag.
5. What are the differences between Drupal and Google Sites?

Google sites is proprietary software, you are still able to build a basic website but it lacks the complete functionality of a CMS. Drupal is an open source CMS, with free hosting. Drupal is downloaded and run locally.
6. What are the differences between Drupal and Joomla?

Joomla is simpler and very straight forward to use backed up by a large community of developers.
7. What are the differences between Drupal and Plone?
Plone does allow for a large amount of customization and control. And because of this is alot more dense compared to drupal. Drupal however has a larger base of support because of its open source community.

8. Find examples of five sites made using Drupal. Place links to these sites on your blog.

Blog 10 – Information Architecture

1. Describe the five stages of integrating information architecture into the web development process.

Research – Review existing background materials, understand criteria.

Strategy – High-level framework for the IA, establishing direction and scope which guides implementation phase

Design – Creating blueprints, wireframes, and metadata schema.

Implementation – Design is put to test as the site is built, tested and launched.

Administration – Continue evaluation and improvements of site’s information architecture.

2. In terms of assessing technology, what is a gap analysis?

Gap analysis is identifying the disconnects between business goals, user needs, and the practical limitations of the existing technology infrastructure.

3. When gathering content for content analysis, describe an approach that would capture a representational sample of a site’s content.

A Noah’s Ark approach is recommended for optimal results. As should play out as follow, Format, aim for a mix of formats. Document type, capturing diverse set of document types. Source, reflect the diverse sources of content. Subject, look for publicly available classification scheme or thesaurus. Existing Architecture, analyze existing structure of the site and collect sample of content.

4. Describe the differences between structural metadata, descriptive metadata, and administrative metadata.

Structural – Information hierarchy of the object

Descriptive – Different ways to describe the object

Administrative – How the object relates to business context

5. What are competitive and before-and-after benchmarking?

Competitive – Process of comparing a firm’s practices and performance measures with its most successful competitors.

Before-and-After – Comparison of existing versions of your website.

6. What are the benefits of competitive benchmarking?

  • Generates a list of features
  • Avoids copying wrong features
  • Establishes current position with respect to competitors and creates point of reference against to measure speed of improvement

7. What are the benefits of before-and-after benchmarking?

  • Prioritizes information architecture features in existing site
  • Creates point of reference against which you can measure improvements
  • Gives a clear before and after representation

8. What is clickstream analysis, and why is it important?

The process of collecting, analyzing, and reporting aggregate data about which pages visitors visit in what order.

9. What sort of information can you learn about users from search log analysis?

By using search log analysis, you can identify what users are searching for, and the words and phrases they are using.

10. What should be the goals for surveying users from an information architecture perspective?

By surveying users. it allows you to gather rich data about users’ information seeking behaviors. This in turn helps to identify which content users find more useful/valuable, what ideas users have for improvements, and where they are currently experiencing problems with and finally the level of satisfaction with the site.

Blog 9 – Content and Modules

1. What is the purpose of metadata? What are the categories of metadata?

Metadata is information about information, it aids in maintaining and structuring large amounts of information.

Metadata has three categories, Structural, Descriptive and Administrative

2. What is a controlled vocabulary? How is a controlled vocabulary beneficial to a web site and/or organisation?

A Controlled Vocabulary is a list of equivalent terms in the form of a synonym ring, or a list of preferred terms in the form of an authority file.

The benefits for use in a web site or an organization are that it makes a database easier to search. It also helps with category analysis or keeping your categories distinct and helps establish a site’s navigation.
3. List the four main types of controlled vocabularies.

  1. Synonym Rings
  2. Authority Files
  3. Classification Schemes/Taxonomy
  4. Thesauri

4. What is the purpose of a synonym ring? Give examples of terms that would be considered equivalent under a synonym ring. What might happened during a search if you didn’t use a synonym ring? (Give an example.)

Helps enable easier searching by creating a set of equivalent words that help with accurate retrieval of information.

Example – Food processor > Blender > Kitchen Aid > Kitchenaid > Cuizinart.
5. What is the purpose of an authority file? Describe how an authority file can educate users during search.

An Authority file contains an index-able record of all decisions made by catalogers in a given library, which catalogers consult when making, or revising, decisions about headings.

It can educate users by showing preferred terms, by proving mapping between equivalent terms or in some cases helping with correction of misspellings.
6. Create an authority file for abbreviations of the Australian states and territories
(Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia, Australian Capital Territory, Victoria,
South Australia, Western Australia, Northern Territory).
7. Describe the purpose of a classification scheme. How does a web site benefit from a classification scheme?

A classification scheme helps structure the information that a site will need to present.

A classification scheme helps to structure information to make it easier to manipulate and search.
8. Create a classification scheme for several major dog breeds based on whether the dog is toy, small, medium, large, or giant

30. Design a controlled vocabulary for your proposed Drupal web site

Blog 8

1. Describe what Google Analytics is, the functionality it provides, and how it might be useful when designing/maintaining a web site.

Google Analytics is a freemium web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic. This allows various pieces of useful information to be gathered such as where parts of the site are frequently accessed, and even down to the likely demographics and locations of the viewership.

2. What is the purpose of the “Admin” module in Drupal? Describe the various features offered by Drupal’s Admin module.

The administration module, which is built in, helps to make Drupal easier to use. It enables drop-down menus from the top of the screen, and aids greatly in navigation.

3. Undertake the following tasks for your Drupal web site assignment:
a. Establish a Google Analytics account and configure it to work with your Drupal web site; and
b. Add the Admin module to your Drupal web site.

Drupal Gardens, a recommended option for the assignment, does not offer the option to load external modules, and does not offer the aforementioned admin module.

Blog 7 – Search Systems

1. What are some of the reasons that might warrant the need to use a search system on a website?

If the site is populated with alot of information or items, it is important for the site to have a search system in order to locate information.

2. Why is an Information Architect interested in search systems?

Search systems are designed to “look up” the information architecture and without use of controlled vocabulary and meta data terms as defined from the information, search systems would not find what they are looking for.

3. Describe the core components of a search engine.

The Search interface is where users are prompted to enter keyword searches; The Search engine, which processes the request based on algorithms, spiders, thesauri and other information components; The content is the information that the search will navigate to answer the request; The results are the end result of the search, where the user is presented with information that has been found to match the keyword search criteria.

4. What is a search zone? What are the approaches for creating search zones?

A search zone is a section of the entire information architecture that can be narrowed to refine the search results to more specific results. Such as a particular item of a group.

5. Explain the difference between recall and precision in terms of search results.

Recall – The number of relevant documents retrieved from the total relevant documents in the collection.

Precision – The number of relevant documents retrieved from the total number of documents in the collection, which should be the most relevant.
6. Consider the following search engines:
a. Search engine A retrieves 600 documents out of a total of 8,200 documents. Out of the 600 documents retrieved, only 500 are relevant out of a total of 923 relevant documents. Calculate the recall and precision rates for the query. 

Recall = 500/923 = .54171181

Precision = 500/8200 = .060
b. Search engine B retrieves 131 documents out of a total of 8,200 documents. Out of the 131 documents retrieved, all 131 are relevant out of a total of 923 relevant documents. Calculate the recall and precision rates for the query.

Recall = 131/923 = .1419

Precision = 131/8200 = .0159
c. Search engine C retrieves 700 documents out of a total of 8,200 documents. Out of the 700 documents retrieved, 0 are relevant out of a total of 923 relevant documents. Calculate the recall and precision rates for the query.

Recall = 0/923 = 0

Precision = 0/8200 = 0
d. Search engine D retrieves 5,000 documents out of a total of 8,200 documents.
Out of the 5,000 documents retrieved, 923 are relevant out of a total of 923 relevant documents. Calculate the recall and precision rates for the query.

Recall = 923/923 = 1

Precision = 923/8200 = .1125

7. What is the purpose of a stemming tool? Explain the difference between strong and weak stemming. Provide examples of strong and weak stemming.

8. What are two main issues to consider when displaying the results of a search?

Which content to display for retrieved information and how to list or group the results to best help the user find what they need.
9. How many documents should you display in a search result?

The amount of documents displayed is all dependent on the results, the size of the results
10. Describe some approaches for sorting and ranking search results for display.

Relativity, Alphabetical, Chronological, grouping based on criteria. The user should have the option to decide on how they wish the results to be displayed

11. When sorting search results alphabetically, why is it a good idea to omit articles such as
“a” and “the”?

As they add no additional information to the search and can effect the results sorted that are sorted my alphabetical.

12. How does “best bets” ranking operate?

The “best bets” ranking allows human indexing to influence ranking. Keyword and descriptor fields can be searched, leveraging the value judgments of human indexers.

13. What are four key factors to consider when designing a search system interface?

  • Level of searching expertise and motivation
  • Type of information need
  • Type of information being searched
  • Amount of information being searched

14. What are some of the ways search system designers can help a user when no results are returned for a query?

Providing relevance ranked results or provide some instruction on how to narrow search results.

Blog 5 – Labeling Syst

1. What is the goal of a label?

To effectively and efficiently communicate by associating an item/entity for the user. It is important for labels not to be too complicated or data heavy for the user.

2. Why is labeling an important aspect of web site design?

Labels in web site design aid the process by providing the users with visual clues and help in identify two items similarities/relationship. Labels also help with organisation and recognition for the user.

3. What are the aspects of a good labeling system?

A good labeling system should be efficient, effective and help ease the user experience with identifying objects/items. It is also important for a labeling system to be concise.

4. List and describe the types/varieties of labels?

Page Titles – Briefly described the page and the general information it will be about

Index Terms – Defines the meaning of the content it is related to

URL’s – Descriptive and brief and should have high relation to the content on the site

Contextual Links – Links that link to other web pages

Iconic Labels – A visual representation of the information/content

5. Why do index terms facilitate faster searching and make browsing easier?

Index terms provide a broader set of results, which in turn makes searching faster and easier. Index terms relate keywords to the search term rather than just the term.

6. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using iconic labels.


  • Better looking
  • Due to the aesthetic appeal and uniqueness, they are easier to recognize than textual labels


  • More difficult to portray additional information
  • Riskier to use in most cases

7. What is the purpose of “scope notes”?

Scope notes are used to simplify and provide more accurate results. It might tell you the range of topics covered by the term; it might be instructions for use.
8. How do homonyms and synonyms affect label design?

Homonyms and Synonyms both manipulate the meaning of a word and can be confusing to grasp and understand. It is advised to avoid using them.
9. Why is it important to be consistent when designing a labeling system?

Consistency reduces confusion and increased user recognition . It allows the user to use the website far more effectively and efficiently.
10. Why is it better to have a narrower scope when designing labels?

It is best to focus on a particular topic relating to a specific audience. This allows the content to more predictable and relatable to the topic.
11. List and describe the key issues that affect the consistency of a labeling system.

  • Presentation – Making it ascetically pleasing
  • Syntax – The order, rules and principles of the label
  • Audience – Catering to the correct audience can be difficult
  • Style – Finding a pleasing style for the audience

12. What are the main sources of labeling systems?

The main sources of labeling systems come from websites.
13. Create a labeling table for a web site of your choice. Comment on the quality of the labeling system. Are there any inconsistencies? How would you improve the labeling system?
14. What are the advantages of using controlled vocabularies and thesauri as a source for labeling systems? Provide some examples of controlled vocabulary and thesauri resources.
15. Describe the three most important sources for creating a new labeling system.

Content analysis : Read the content from the website and use some keyword for that

Content authors : Suggested label from author over his content

User advocates and subject matter experts: People who are familiar with content can support with many all labels

Blog 1 – Week 2

1. What is information? Describe the qualities of information.

Information is stimuli, it provides facts, details and particulars. Information must be accurate, concise and relevant.

2. What is the Dewey Decimal System? Describe how it operates.

The Dewey Decimal System is a way to sort books and other publications by subject and is often used in schools and libraries. It places the books on the shelf by subject using numbers from 000 to 999. It is called “Decimal” because it uses numbers to the right of the decimal point for more detail. The categories of the system are listed below.

000 Computer science, information, and general works
100 – Philosophy and psychology
200 – Religion
300 – Social sciences
400 – Language
500 – Science
600 – Technology
700 – Arts and recreation
800 – Literature
900 – History and geography

3. Explain what Library Science is.

The study of librarianship; Library Science refers to the tools, techniques and methods that librarians use to organise, index, search, and provide access to information.

4. What is information architecture?

In a broad sense, information architecture is organising functionality and content into a structure that people are able to navigate. The world wide web is a good example of an information architecture.

5. List and describe at least three reasons for why information architecture is important (i.e.,
the return on investment for hiring an information architect).

Cost of finding information, if the website is well made, the user will be able to navigate quickly with limited clicks in order to find the information they desire, if not they will become frustrated and move on to somewhere else.

Cost of not finding information, if the user is unable to find the information they are looking for in the desired time/clicks they will go else where.
Cost of construction, the amount of time and budget spent constructing the site, this also include staff, planning and big fixing.
6. List and describe the four key information architecture concepts that help information architects articulate user needs and behaviours.

The four key information acrhitecture concepts are as follow:

Complex systems
Invisible work
Knowledge networks
Information seeking behaviour
7. List and describe the three main information architecture systems that support a web site.

The three main information architecture systems are:

Searching systems
Navigation systems
Semantic networks
8. List and describe the four main information architecture deliverables.

Wireframes: Outline of a user interface and its structure.
Blueprints: Layout of the information environment.
Controlled vocabularies: Groups of similar words, sorted by the most popular term to improve search performance.
Metadata schema: A breakdown of the metadata structure.
9. The following is a list of career titles related to this course. Research five titles from the
list. Write a brief description for the title, what the key duties are, which potential
companies will hire people with those skillsets, and what sort of remuneration is
 A/Director, Service Integration
 Asset Data Records Keeping
 Analyst Digital Marketing Consultant
 Director of Systems and Reporting
 Document and Records Coordinator
 Document Management Specialist
 Enterprise Content Management
 EDRMS Management
 Information Architect
 Information and Records Management
 Knowledge Information Coordinator
 Marketing SEO Consultant
 Principal Records Coordinator
 Professional Web Content Writer
 Quality Assurance Project Manager
 Recordkeeping Advisor Records
Management Advisor
 Records Management Consultant
 Records Manager
 Senior Data Management Officer
 Search Engine Optimiser
 Search Engine Optimisation Consultant
 SEO Manager
 Usability Designer
 UX Designer
 Usability/Information Architect
 UX Architect
 Web Developer/Designer
10. Check out the Information Architecture Institute. Comment on what sort of value you see
such an institute being to the community. Place a link on your blog to the institute.
11. Describe what is meant by the term “information ecology”.
12. What is content management and how does it relate to information architecture?
13. What is metadata and how is it used in information architecture?
14. Explain why the “Too-Simple” information model is unrealistic for modelling users’
information seeking behaviours.
15. Describe how a web site user typically finds information.
16. What is known-item seeking? Give two examples.
17. What is exploratory seeking? Give two examples.
18. What is exhaustive research? Give two examples.
19. What is re-finding? Give two examples.
20. What is the Berry Picking Model? Give an example of how you might search for a topic
using the Berry Picking Model.
21. What is the Pearl Growing Model? Give an example of how you might search for a topic
using the Pearl Growing Model.
22. Explain what search analytics is and how it helps your learn more about information
needs and information seeking behaviours.
23. Explain what contextual enquiry is and how it helps your learn more about information
needs and information seeking behaviours.
24. Use the pearl growing method for information seeking to search for information about
“Electronic Record and Documents Management” and “Digital Asset Management”.
Using a minimum of 500 words:
a) Describe what you found/learnt about “Electronic Record and Documents
Management” and “Digital Asset Management”. (Remember to provide references to
authoritative sources.)
b) Describe your experience with using the pearl growing method and the processes you