Day#268: Recent experiences with IA

Day#268: Recent experiences with IA

Hey Uxers for today I wanted to chat Information Architecture, I did a few posts on IA earlier on in this 365 days of UX blog you can check out my older post here but today’s post is more focused on my current experience with the knowledge and hurdles I am currently facing. I am working on a personal project that entails categorizing food products and initially I decided to jot down the categories that came to mind. I then ran it past my partner on the project and I quickly realized that my food categories were very much related to my knowledge and past experiences of the foods, I had also forgotten a large amount of categories, something else that I thought of while we chatted was nested categories. For example more traditional cultural dishes or modern dishes. We also had the concept of location based styles and labels, some would have similar names or names would not be English at all. This all became a lot of information rather quickly and might I add that this was not one of the sections for this project that we thought would be so dense.

The point is that Users would have to select a category in order to refine their search, similar to how Netflix allows you to add to your Watch list and then the Site works on understanding what you would like to watch in relation to shows you have perhaps never watched but that still fall within the genre that they suspect you will like. Something else that I noticed was how certain nested content could fall within multiple categories, take pizza for example a clear Italian food. However, America has become known for pizza as well as it a common food item with their own versions of the meal.

Through my research on the organising the Information Architecture of the food items I also learned how certain interesting facts about various foods, see below

  • Locations near the coast often feature traditional meals with Seafood.
  • Places that were located further from the coast would struggle with obtaining food items, as well as possibly struggled with trading hence they have a lot of fermented and salted items.
  • Dishes were very much reliant on the foods in the area, it sounds fairly obvious but still interesting in how it formed our cultural norms of foods associated with the areas.
  • I have a personal opinion that spices were used to hide the taste of foods that were going off, it obviously also enhanced the taste of foods but I will be doing more research into the initial reason.
  • Foods can change by the time of day or type of event, for example some Japanese types of foods are more common for social events and other for formal events. Think of fondue for example, this is a popular social treat for people joining together for a social food event
  • Foods were batched into class distinctions, this was based on affordability. Now we still do have these types of separations where imported items are more pricey etc.
  • Asian culture seems to have a lot of examples of roadside meal options, western culture has also got its version of Ice cream trucks and hot dog stands etc

I decided to start with separating the content by location and used continents as a more holistic category, then countries with more detailed labels. The titles became more specific when I included various cultural dishes that fell under each category alongside preparation details etc. I actually did not need to get into that much detail for this task, but since it is a personal project and I am enjoying learning about all the different foods I decided why not. At some point we will perhaps do specific advertising for different locations and having an idea of the types of foods that are popular in the various locations will also help us target Users more specifically. Happy researching until next time Uxers.

Bye for now

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