SIGIA-L Mail Archives: RE: [Sigia-l] The How
RE: [Sigia-l] The How
From: Derek R (derek_at_derekrogerson.com)
Date: Thu Nov 14 2002 - 15:17:48 EST
>| We hope that this model will be more permanent
>| and successful than the models used by, for example,
>| info-arch.org and the ACIA--both of which are stagnant
Excuse me. But is it not the people who created the aforementioned
stagnant organizations, the same people who have built AIfIA? Just what
are you expecting to be different this time, besides the monetary cost
To me this is the same flawed philosophy which suggests companies should
hire people who were at the top of the management structure which sent
the Internet-Industry stocks crashing down. I wouldn't touch those
people with a 10' pole as they observably managed things into the ground
-- lacking vision, insight, and common sense.
The same philosophy goes towards hiring self-proclaimed UX
people/companies which present themselves in a non-adaptive ways like a
fixed-font. You want to talk about 'How?' How's that?
If one refuses to observe the user in a presentation of how one observes
the user, just *how* dumb do you have to be to fall for it and hire
Kudos to http://wired.com for having enough common-sense to recognize
this and remaining authoritative about instructing Web Design. However,
I still commonly see Web Design articles on other online sites,
extolling the virtues of liquid-layout, standards, non-framed
environments, relative-fonts, etc.. all presented in a framed,
fixed-font, non-standard, no-DTD, red-type on orange background.. etc
etc. Makes you want to just throw up! Yeesh!
I mentioned this before without response, and here I think it is
relevant, so I'll mention it again and see what develops -- I think
there is an issue of age (demography) in management which is holding a
lot of different industries back, and certainly Usability, IA, and UX in
the Web space.
To Expand the Idea:
Most older people in the workforce are in a management position which
exerts influence over the entire organization they work for. As older
adults, they are nearing, or have past, retirement age and essentially
We need to recognize that these people have a vested interest (I would
maintain their *only* interest) in ensuring they meet their retirement
strategy above-and-beyond what may be best for the company. So, for
instance, an older manager closing in on retirement (gone bye-bye for
life) is not interested in forward-looking strategies or implementations
(anything involving any risk) -- it's often too foreign to them and
primarily they only need to ride out the next 'X' number of years to get
to the golden-ticket of retirement.
In short, older managers just want to spin through life-cycles without
doing much with new ideas (particularly online implementations and
information methods) which hurts our particular IA/UX industry as
forward thinking. I won't talk about *how* these people are the same
'boomers' (the Me-Me-Me generation) which brought us Fast-Food, SUV's,
and, historically and observably, only look out for themselves (the 'me'
generation). They aren't interested in putting resources toward online
implementation with standards that boost productivity, expand markets,
etc. etc. (forward thinking) because this information-age is a vast
undertaking which requires considerable thought and execution. As we can
observe, they look out for themselves and they are heading-out-the-door.
Therefore, it might behoove us to recognize our industry as one which is
dominated be relatively 'young' people, and is being under-cut -- not
exclusively because the older managers do not understand new technology
and information science, but more so and in addition to the reality that
they don't do business that way (note prevalence of fax #'s), and
they're only business, right now, is the business of getting retired,
not in examining (in good faith) the virtues of sound
information-sharing and presentation.
I'm thinking a lot of you know and intimately understand this already.
The sad truth, I believe, is there is little we can do except wait for
the changing-of-the-guard and look forward to zero (0) pension since the
boomers will gratefully take all of those funds.
So, finally, the stickler becomes not so much trying to sell IA/UX etc
to an audience which may not understand it, but to recognize the
audience is completely unreceptive to the message from the word 'go' --
they being pre-occupied with the business of retirement (self-interest).
Something to think about. You might save some of your evangelizing
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: Sun Nov 23 2003 - 22:55:28 EST