Topic: Content Strategy
April 21, 2003
Fancy media on websites typically fails user testing. Simple text and clear photos not only communicate better with users, they also enhance users' feeling of control and thus support the Web's mission as an instant gratification environment.
October 28, 2002
Even small holiday decorations can increase joy of use and make websites feel more current and more connected to users' lives and physical environment. The key is to commemorate without detracting from your users' main reasons for visiting the site.
October 1, 2000
To take the Internet to the next level, users must begin posting their own material rather than simply consuming content or distributing copyrighted material. Unfortunately most people are poor writers and even worse at authoring other media. Solutions include structured creation, selection-based media, and teaching content creation in schools.
October 17, 1999
If everything is emphasized, then nothing
stands out. Prioritized design helps users focus on the most promising
August 8, 1999
Most streaming video is useless; instead use higher-quality downloadable clips and short segments that can be chosen from a menu. All multimedia needs plain-page previews.
June 27, 1999
Web services often collect content from separate sources and present it to users in a single interface. Making such integration usable requires unified meta-content.
November 29, 1998
Keeping old content alive will more than double the value of a site and only cost a small investment in content gardening. Removed pages equal lost users.
September 6, 1998
Online headlines must be absolutely clear when taken out of context. They should be written in plain language (no puns or clever headlines). 5 additional guidelines + examples of bad microcontent.
August 23, 1998
In 5-10 years, newspapers, magazines, books, and TV will cease being separate media forms and will be integrated into unified multimedia Web services.
July 12, 1998
Errors in data records destroy the usability of a site and make it difficult to find info. Guidelines for preventing, correcting, and surviving errors.
June 14, 1998
6% of the Web's links are broken, diminishing its usability. All old URLs should be kept working indefinitely - otherwise you throw away business.
March 8, 1998
Instead of emulating the real world, websites should build on the strengths of the medium and go beyond what's possible in physical reality: be non-linear, customize service, ignore geography.
January 25, 1998
Micropayments prevent annoying Web ads and encourage site-design for users' needs. Subscription fees discourage new users, search engines, and links.
January 1, 1998
The Web will become more international (but will overseas sites or American sites benefit?), sites will outsource services, content will adapt to usage patterns in real time.
August 16, 1996
Slate fails due to its inability to adjust to the online medium: too long articles, too little hypertext, scrolling home page (though redesigns have improved later issues)
February 1, 1996
Paper remains the optimal medium for some forms of writing, especially for long works like a book. It is an unfortunate fact that current computer screens lead to a reading speed that is approximately 25% slower than reading from paper. We have invented better screens and it is just a matter of time before reading from computers is as good as reading from paper, but for the time being we have to design our information for the actual screens in use around the world.
August 1, 1995
Online publishing of newspapers, magazines, and books is really a meaningless concept. We have to leave the legacy publications behind as we invent the world of online publishing. Information will have to be organized in new ways that match the properties of the new medium rather than being derived from the way the physical limitations of the old medium caused information to be split up among specific publications.