Information Experiences…or, Whaa what would you say…yah do here?

When people contact us at Juice, they sometimes don’t have a complete picture of what we do. Our obsession with finding better ways to communicate information is obvious, but how it adds up to something relevant to their business isn’t always as clear.

The answer: We design, prototype, and develop great Information Experiences™.

Information Experience™ is our way of describing the intersection between user experience and information-intensive applications, where success is how effectively a user can consume, understand, and apply that information.

Like sitting behind the wheel of a BMW or my two-year-old flipping through photos on an iPhone, great Information Experiences have less to do with features and more to do with an intimate connection between human and device. Great information experiences tell stories where data is the primary medium for communication. The information appears when it is needed and the device or application seems to anticipate the next question or action. These are the objectives that we apply to the solutions we design and build.

Designing Information Experiences spans from the highest architectural model of a system to the specific details of user/interface interaction and data visualization. Across these levels, we consider four objectives:

1. Support the achievement of organizational objectives. How can the information experience fit into users’ existing decision-making and work processes? How can we influence decision-making with the right information at the right time?

2. Direct the user to likely actions in order to “get it done”. What are the important questions a user is trying to answer or tasks the user wants to accomplish? How can the application make it as easy and intuitive as possible to get to results? Does the navigation and user flow feel like an extension of users’ thought process?

3. Present only the information that needs to be seen. For any given view of data and situational context, what is the most critical information to share with the user? How can information be progressively revealed to give the user what they need to know at any given time?

4. Present the information in a way that produces understanding and action. For any given data and situational context, what is the most effective information visualization? What are the best ways to present information given users’ experience and sophistication with interpreting information? What is the appropriate level of detail to be displayed given the context and user needs?

When we talk about the social rather than technical challenges of Business Intelligence, it is motivated by the belief that too many vendors are more comfortable tackling technical details rather than evaluating how users can interact and gain value from information. Which is to say: design better Information Experiences.

That’s what we do here at Juice. And we have people skills! We are good at dealing with people! Can’t you people understand that!