Drupal now does trackback, so ia/ does too

There's now a trackback URL for each blog entry. Check the small text below each blog entry. Also fixed some problems that were causing email notifications not be sent and news feeds not to update since the beginning of the week. All should be well again today.

Facetmap of iaslash

The xfml feed allowed me to create a facetmap, which is quite nice. Would be interesting to see if any clustering information visualization emerges out of these types of metadata experiments. Peter also sent me the URL of a site search interface that uses XFML. Looks like there will be nice services that could come out of this. I think the main thing people want to see, however, is Peter's application that will help individuals map topics on disparate systems. Playing with this makes me realize I need to go through the old posts and clasify them.

New features: email notification, categories, better syndication

Adding a few new features (drupal modules).

Email notification
You can elect to receive email once a day to get notified of new posts (new blog entries and/or comments). Once you are logged in, select notification settings under your user menu in the sidebar.

(NOTE: If you tried to set this up this weekend and got permission errors, please try again. I forgot to set permission attributes. Oops.)

In case you haven't noticed we've started experimenting with the addition of a flat set of subject headings for each blog entry. Those subject headings are now accessible from the side navigation with indications of how many entries are available in each subject area. Since my blogging has been lighter this year, I plan to go through the old posts and categorize them, deleting dead links as I find them.

RSS syndication by category or user
This is a cool addition. I added the module that lets you syndicate by category or by user. In the syndicate box in the sidebar, select the More link beneath the XML icon to see your syndication options.

XFML feeds are available in the syndication box. You go, Peter. And thanks, Kristjan for the module.

New XML feed for Radio News Aggregators

Apparently there is some problem with Radio grabbing iaslash's newsfeed and showing duplicates. For Radio aggregator's here's the workaround for now. I am using lynx to dump the XML feed once a day. Source is here:
Thanks to Lee for pointing this out.


Peter Morville's Semantic Studios announces the launch of a redesigned version 2.0 web site. Most interesting (to me, at least) are the quotes about the 2nd edition of Information Architecture for the World Wide Web, including John Rhodes' recommendation: “If you own nothing but the shirt on your back, sell your shirt and get this book.”

Burn out...

Time for a rant (everyone else with a blog does it). I don't know about other people, but I've been feeling really burned out lately. Tired of keeping up -- I abandoned reading SIGIA-L a few months ago, although I still receive the mail. Here's what my SIGIA-L folder looks like in Entourage:

    sigia (2152)
Seriously. It's becoming an internal joke for me. Since I have it filtered, I never have to look at it, so it goes unread while I spend more time reading papers and articles. Where is this heading? I am getting tired of keeping up with IA at the moment. It's getting boring/tedious. Anyone else ever feel that way? It takes so much energy to investigate and try to understand things like computer science and what's happening with ontologies, topic maps, etc. This is the problem with being a generalist and trying to have your hand in so many things -- at least in trying to understand so many things.

Where I'm headed at the moment is taking a pragmatic approach to professional development. I was thinking of maybe taking a class in the fall to learn how to properly program in C (rather than just hacking Perl and PHP). Maybe focussing more on learning computer science aspects of information organization and retrieval and not spending so much time on learning more about creative design, interaction design, usabilty. Hell, I even entertained fantasies at one point before returning to Lucent of learning to become a woodworker -- something more tangible than dealing with computers, code and information. But I'm an information organizer by nature so I decided not to start over, but to focus on smaller pieces of the profession.

I think what is happening is that I'm getting intellectually fried. I have been working on a content inventory for a digital library collection, which we are now using to view the corpus of data we warehouse in order to conceptualize ways of providing access. It has been challenging and mind numbing and has left me wanting not to have to think about information organization at all.

So I don't know. Maybe it's just the NYC humidity softening my brain. I wish someone could give me something to inspire me to choose or not to choose a professional path. If it were possible, I think I'd do very well as a full-time stay-at-home-dad. :)


Been pretty slow here the past week. I've been tied up with a few big things -- selling my house, preparing to launch a site, a volunteer project, and trying to enjoy the summer despite the 100 degree weather. In any case, I expect to take a break from this blog for the next few weeks, so blogging from me will be sparse. Feel free to continue submitting news without me!


CMS upgrade: Drupal v.4

I've upgraded the Drupal cms from the CVS version to the stable version 4. Please bear with me as I get some things back in order.

Thanks to everyone on the Drupal team for a kick-ass blog app.


Welcome to iaslash.


iaslash is a news site for information architects. Regardless of your field, if you are interested in information organization, usability, user testing, user interface design, and other areas related to the access and use of information in information-use environments, you may find some news and resources of interest here.

iaslash should be fairly easy to use if you have used any of the community news sites modeled after slashdot. If you've come across any news, papers or articles related to information architecture, please feel free to submit it.

You can syndicate this site's content using the RSS feed located at

The code used here is courtesy of drupal.

-Michael (jibbajabba)

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