Introducing our newest “Originals”!

Here at Origin Interactive we celebrate our diversity and unique skill sets. We love meeting and joining forces with passionate individuals who share our vision of improving people’s lives. We are proud to announce the addition of these two awesome guys to our team.

Tshepo Lehutjo

Junior UX Consultant

Tshepo - Our new UX Consultant

The little engine who could!

We’re all about collaboration, education and information. We were thrilled to welcome Tshepo to our team as an intern in 2012 while he was completing his MA: Digital Arts – Interactive Media at the University of Wits. Tshepo was studying the Usability of Twitter applications on Smartphones. It didn’t take us long to realise that we had discovered an amazing expert-in-the-making from which we could learn a thing or two, while at the same time, expose him to the enticing world of User Experience.

We kept our eye on this talented young man and as soon as we heard he was available for hiring, we scooped him up before anyone else could. Tshepo has proven that when he’s thrown in the deep end, not only does he swim; he dives in headfirst and tackles sharks with his bare hands. Seeing as his favourite saying is “Challenge accepted!” we’re not surprised that he confronts problems head on, with a passion to solve them logically and meticulously.

Michael Chihaka

Junior UX Visual Designer

Michael - Our new UX Designer

Hot design(er)

Michael is our Junior UX Visual Designer with a great deal of experience working in various design programs.

Junior, as the other staff has affectionately nicknamed him, is incredibly passionate about strong conceptual design and feels that “without design thinking, there’s no route to innovative and alternative human-centred solutions”. His philosophy is to practice design thinking, from inspiration to implementation.

After completing his Honours in BA: Information Design at the University of Pretoria, his professional experience includes working on various exciting projects for clients like SAB Kickstart and Castle Milk Stout, SA Design Hub, Sabat, VO5 & Transitions to name a few.

Junior is truly a triple threat as he is also an aspiring DJ and has completed some of his motion projects to the sounds of his own music. With a passion to learn and grow, and a desire to always push the boundaries of digital design, he is definitely a shooting star in our galaxy to keep your eye on. Michael’s down to earth attitude and ability to laugh at himself have kept him grounded and focused on one thing: expanding his and others’ worlds through significant digital engagements.

Our two new team members at daily stand-up

More staff = more birthdays = more cake! YAY

 

Welcome aboard guys, we’re super stoked to have you!

 

Content strategy vs information architecture

Hey, I saw a discussion on an UX forum about the difference between information architecture and content strategy. The discussion confused me, what do you think?

I hadn’t really thought about it. But my natural knowledge-sharing instincts woke up, before I knew it, I said ‘No problem, I’ll do a session and write a post on it.’

Since then I’ve realised even though I’ve been responsible for content strategy and information architecture over the years and I have a thorough understanding; it’s not necessarily easy to explain.

The short answer

Both content strategy and information architecture deals with how users interact with information in a digital space. But the focus is different.

Content strategy focuses on the delivery, governance and planning content creation.

The term, information architecture, is used in multiple fields, which makes it hard to give a short definition. But essentially it deals with the design of an information space and to ensure that users can easily find what they’re looking for.

Content strategy

Strategy: a plan of action designed to achieve a vision. It’s about gaining a position of advantage over competitors. (Or the best way to advance to a specific goal.)

  • Content strategy concerns itself with the entire editorial content development process.
  • Content analysis: roughly describing metadata, taxonomy and search engine optimisation
  • Content planning: defining content requirements across the system
  • Ensure content is readable, understandable and also findable, shareable and actionable
  • Content strategy is continual; it runs through planning, design, implementation, launch and carries on as an operational task as long as the product is used.
  • Involves an editorial process, with different professionals having responsibility and sign-off for deliverables.

Information architecture

Information architecture involves itself with the organizing and labeling in information products to support findability and usability. It looks at search and navigation systems

  • Enables users to complete tasks by providing choices
  • Show enough information to let users access areas of interest
  • Accommodate future growth in content and functionality
  • Information architecture aims to provide a good experience to all users
    • Ensures that different user types, goals and requirements are accommodated
    • That includes what the majority of users are interested in Allow successful user journeys for fringe user types
  • Access points: ensure users can access the product from different starting points and complete their tasks
  • In addition to business requirements, site goals, user requirements and user journeys: information architecture has input from different strategies.
    • The information architect has to ensure that the requirements from content strategy, marketing and business are also met.
  • Information architecture doesn’t follow a specific process but uses various mechanisms and tasks – depending on the requirements of the system – to arrive at a solution

United we stand

For me, the point is, let’s keep pushing user experience design to incorporate areas of expertise, any and all fields, that is necessary to have kick-ass digital products.

That’s how we’ll continue to create meaningful digital experiences.

“User experience is a focus, a thread that runs through all of our disciplines, and which no discipline owns or controls”.

– The UXsters

Further reading

How content strategy fits into the user experience – Nick Finck

Content Strategy and UX: A Mordern Love Story – Kristina Halvorson