Ah! Some good old fashioned IA discussion.

Mark Hurst writes about The Page Paradigm and gets talked about by Peterme, Christina and others.

As PeterMe says though (“I did a quick assessment of the site Mark points to, and I can say with no reservation that you should totally follow all of Mark’s suggestions when you’re designing a 26 page site. “), Mark is pretty much missing the ball here.

Mark writes: “Users don’t much care “where they are” in the website. So-called “breadcrumb links,” which show the user the exact hierarchy of the website as they click further down, are a nice but mostly irrelevant technology. It’s not that users don’t understand the links; it’s that they don’t care.”

Of course users don’t care where they are in the website. Thinking that is a beginners’ mistake.

Mark writes: “I emphasize this because Web developers often waste time worring about “where content should live.”

But Mark, we don’t do that because we think users care about where they are. We do that so that users can more easily find things.

He also writes: “Consistency is NOT necessary.”

There are kinds of consistency that are important. Don’t put three links on a page with different names that point to the same page. (At least, I think that would be a bad idea. Don’t want to make it a rule though.)

Having fun though – I haven’t seen an IA debate for a while. Who is right, Mark or Peter? And there’s even comic books.

I am becoming more and more convinced that good design gets done by talented teams.

Mm. That sounded too simple.

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