A directory of resources inthe field of technical communication.

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1.
#33197

A-Z Indexes to Enhance Site Searching

On a Web site or intranet each of the alphabetically arranged entries or subentries is hyperlinked to the page or to an anchor within a page to where the topic is discussed. Since an alphabetical index can be quite long, it is often divided into pages for each letter of the alphabet. Typically, each letter is linked at the top of the page allow a jump to the start of that letter’s section of the index.

Digital Web Magazine (2005). Articles>Web Design>Indexing>Information Design

2.
#37814

Abundance of Choice and Its Effect on Decision Making

What affects decision outcomes most is the actual context in which people make decisions. All kinds of things affect decision making—the type of decision someone is making, the decision maker’s level of expertise, the number of options available, the way and order in which options are presented, and many others. This column examines how the number of available options affects the decision-making process.

Roller, Colleen. UXmatters (2010). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>User Experience

3.
#33097

The "All Together" Rule for Intranets

The primary purpose of intranets is to support staff in doing their jobs, to help them complete common business tasks. In practice, however, this can be very frustrating on many intranets. Policies are located in one section, procedures in another section, and forms in a third. Information then needs to be hunted out in order to complete even simple activities. The effectiveness of intranets can be greatly enhanced by bringing together all of the information and tools relating to a task or a subject, and presenting them in a single location.

Robertson, James. Step Two (2005). Articles>Web Design>Intranets>Information Design

4.
#37627

Alphabetical Sorting Must (Mostly) Die

Ordinal sequences, logical structuring, time lines, or prioritization by importance or frequency are usually better than A–Z listings for presenting options to users.

Nielsen, Jakob. Alertbox (2010). Articles>Information Design>Web Design>Usability

5.
#31888

Annotating the Web with Atom

You've seen reader comments on weblogs and other Web 2.0 sites, but the Atom protocol makes it possible to create and manage such comments in a very flexible way. Flexible Web annotations is an idea that will open up an entirely new class of Web applications with very little actual new invention. Learn how to create a system to manage annotations for anything on the Web, from nearly anywhere.

Ogbuji, Uche and Eric Larson. IBM (2008). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>RSS

6.
#23070

Arquitectura de Información: Una Disciplina "De Lujo" en Chile

Un resumen de la historia y estado actual del campo de la Arquitectura de Información en Chile.

Gutierrez, Malisa and Javier Velasco. AIfIA (2003). (Spanish) Articles>Web Design>Information Design

7.
#30670

Assemble a Cross-Platform Firefox Extension

XUL is a surprisingly easy way to build cross-platform browser extensions or even stand-alone applications. Discover how to build powerful, flexible Mozilla browser extensions that go beyond the capabilities of other tools like embedded scripting languages or CGI--because they're built right into the user's browser.

Ogbuji, Uche. IBM (2007). Articles>Information Design>XML>Web Browsers

8.
#33846

Automated Mass Production of XSLT Stylesheets

Many have wished for a tool that would automate the creation of XSLT stylesheets. Building the interface alone to such a tool sounds like a tough job, and getting it to output working XSLT stylesheets that accomplish non-trivial tasks also sounds challenging. However, the comfort level of nearly all computer users with basic spreadsheet software actually makes the first task simpler than it once appeared to be, and the ease with which popular spreadsheet programs now save their contents in XML means that when you start with the right spreadsheet template, an XSLT stylesheet is not difficult to create from the XML version of a spreadsheet that uses that template.

DuCharme, Bob. IDEAlliance (2005). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>XSL

9.
#37522

A Beginner’s Guide to Design Patterns

Ever wondered what design patterns are? In this article, I’ll explain why design patterns are important, and will provide some examples, in PHP, of when and why they should be used.

Bautista, Nikko. NETTUTS (2010). Articles>Information Design>Web Design

10.
#33836

Binding the Graphical Web (Component and Data Bindings with XBL, XHTML and SVG)

The emerging XML based web increasingly relies upon ways of presenting content in a just in time manner. Presentation technologies such as SVG and XHTML can do so, yet the power to properly harness them will likely lie in the emergent binding languages such as XBL, sXBL, and XTF. In this presentation, bindings and binding languages will be explored, illustrating how such environments as the Mozilla Firefox 1.5 browser are using XBL as a means for performing component binding into XHTML, SVG and XForms interfaces, looks at sXBL and the W3C's XBL directions, and details why such binding languages likely represent the future of XML presentation and interaction.

Cagle, Kurt. IDEAlliance (2005). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>XML

11.
#34332

Bookmark (Anchor) Linking Tip

You can link to any tag within the page by quoting its ID. For example, if you have a paragraph with an ID of "intro", then you can link directly to that point without having to insert a bookmark.

Self, Tony. HyperWrite (2007). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>HTML

12.
#23073

Bottoms Up: Designing Complex, Adaptive Systems

Web design is under attack. Our enemy is a dangerous meme known as reductionism. This devious adversary is spreading the notion that we can fully understand Web sites as a combination of simpler components, and that we can break the process of design into lots of quick steps and clearly defined deliverables.

Morville, Peter. New Architect (2002). Articles>Information Design>Web Design

13.
#33198

Breadcrumb Navigation: Further Investigation of Usage

There are three different types of breadcrumbs represented in websites – path, attribute, and location. Path breadcrumb trails are dynamic in that any given page will show a different breadcrumb trail based on how the user reached the page. Attribute breadcrumb trails display meta information showing many different trails representing several possible paths to reach the page.

Rogers, Bonnie Lida and Barbara S. Chaparro. Usability News (2003). Articles>Web Design>Information Design

14.
#35320

Breaking Up Large Documents for the Web - Part 1

To present content on the web in the amount that most people want: think “topic,” not “book”; break large documents into topics and subtopics.

Redish, Janice C. 'Ginny'. User Interface Engineering (2009). Articles>Web Design>Information Design

15.
#35321

Breaking Up Large Documents for the Web - Part 2

One page or separate pages? When faced with that decision, ask yourself these questions: How much do people want in one visit? How connected is the information? Am I overloading my site visitors? How long is the web page? What’s the download time? Will people want to print? How much will they want to print?

Redish, Janice C. 'Ginny'. User Interface Engineering (2009). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>Writing

16.
#32926

Brint.com: Why More is Not Better

Information architect Lou Rosenfeld never thought he'd criticize a website for being over-architected. Then he saw Brint.com and its 16 navigational systems.

Rosenfeld, Louis. CIO Magazine (2000). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>User Centered Design

17.
#32626

Building a More Semantic Web With Microformats

This paper will introduce the Semantic Web, the next stage in the development of the web. We will explain why semantics are important, how they can help computers catalogue data, and how this will benefit us as individuals. We will also look at microformats, an ongoing project the aims to help us create a more semantic web. We assume you have a good knowledge of XHTML.

Mercurytide (2006). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>XHTML

18.
#28031

Building a SQL Server 2005 Integration Services Package Using Visual Studio 2005

A comprehensive start from scratch and step-by-step approach to learn this important procedure. This illustrated article is your guide to SSIS designing.

Krishnaswamy, Jayaram. ASPAlliance (2006). Articles>Information Design>Web Design>SQL

19.
#34184

Building and Managing Personalized Semantic Portals   (PDF)

This paper presents a semantic portal, SEMPort, which provides better user support with personalized views, semantic navigation, ontology-based search and three different kinds of semantic hyperlinks. Distributed content editing and provision is supplied for the maintenance of the contents in real-time. As a case study, SEMPort is tested on the Course Modules Web Page (CMWP) of the School of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS).

Şah, M. and W. Hall. WWW 2007 (2007). Articles>Information Design>Web Design>Semantic

20.
#33975

Building Dynamic Applications With Mozilla, REX and XQuery.

The Mozilla platform offers a rich support of XML techniques, from low level ones (XPath, RDF, DOM, e4x) to rendering dialects like XHTML, SVG, XUL and XForms, thus making this platform a natural choice for the XML inclined. It is becoming a platform of choice when developing rich connected applications. When building dynamic applications, the developer is often facing a common set of programming patterns : gathering data from various remote and local sources, storing data with an optional transformation phase, and updating parts of the GUI to reflect the modifications in the data store. With today's ubiquitous use of XML as a data exchange syntax, a major part of these tasks can be achieved with XML based solutions. In this article we will present an XML centric solution that aims at minimizing the impedance mismatch between different data models that plagues classical architectures involving for instance XML/object/relationnal translation. It combines some of Mozilla's existing capabilities with REX (Remote Events for XML) and a native XML database with XQuery support. REX provides means to update the XUL based GUI and the database, while the XML database is used as a versatile storage engine.

Desré, Fabrice. XML 2006 (2006). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>XML

21.
#32434

Building Up a Site Wireframe

Every web designer should know and understand a Web site’s parameters before lifting a finger to start designing the site. In this article, you will learn the basics required to start designing business Web sites. While this information is useful if you want to build sites for others, it can also serve as a checklist article for sites you want to build for yourself.

Goin, Linda. Opera (2008). Articles>Web Design>Document Design>Information Design

22.
#37067

Building Web Services the REST Way

I will first provide a brief introduction to REST (Representational State Transfer) and then describe how to build Web services in the REST style.

Costello, Roger L. xFront (2006). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>Interaction Design

23.
#33823

Bulletproofing Web Services

As companies and consumers rely more on Web services, it becomes increasingly important for Web services developers to know how to properly design, develop, deploy, and ultimately manage a Web services system. However, because of the inherent complexities that can arise with a Web service implementation, it can be difficult to grasp practical fundamentals and devise a step-by-step plan for Web services development.

Ariola, Wayne. IDEAlliance (2005). Articles>Web Design>Information Design>XML

24.
#31959

Bye-Bye to Boring Page Footers

Gone are the days when a footer merely ended the page. Now it is just as likely to be an all-encompassing launchpad to other areas of the site. Typically a footer will run the full length of the layout, and it is usually used to display information at the bottom of the content hierarchy.

Collison, Simon. Vitamin (2006). Articles>Web Design>Information Design

25.
#20920

A Center for Research in Technical Communication: Initial Ideas and Development for a Worldwide Network

The technical communication field lacks a place for on-line research in the historical, theoretical, and philosophical perspectives. For this reason, the idea of a Technical Communication Research Center was proposed as a way to help move the emphasis off of pedagogical and towards a more evenly balanced web site for technical communication research. Other sites are currently available for on-line research in technical communication, but not everything fits into the academic genre. We have found a market for a comprehensive research site in technical communication. The end product of TCRC will be devoted to both academics and professionals interested in both old and new research in their area of interest. Besides merely a research tool, the TCRC will also be a network for those working in the field. Through databases, email and periodical updates, the ultimate result of the end product is to connect technical communicators all over the world.

Arko, Kirsti, Leroy Steinbacher, John Velat and Dennis Walikainen. Michigan Tech University. Articles>Information Design>Web Design

 
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