Saturday, August 12, 2006

Taskonomies: Why beer and diapers go well together

Thanks eLearningPost for reminding me about Don Norman and the, and specifically the post titled
Logic Versus Usage: The Case for Activity-Centered Design

Reading The Design of Everyday Things had strong impact on my career.  It's a must read for all instructional designers, heck everyone should read it...but I digress.

The concept of taskonomy REALLY rings true for me.  Especially in this new web2.0 world.  I also love the idea of Folksonomies instead of taxonomies.  I think the idea of user, or group generated tagging and organization is VERY closely related to taskonomy.  I can't take alot of time tonight to make the connection more clearly but I may return to the subject later.  Definitely read the's a good piece:
"The hardware store organization is based upon a taxonomy: appropriate for libraries and for stores where the major problem is locating the desired item out of context. But note that some stores have learned to provide activity-centered organization in addition to their normal classification. Thus, smart food stores put potato chips and pretzels next to the beer. And some even put beer next to the diapers, so that when a shopper makes a late night, emergency trip to get more diapers, why there is the beer, temptingly convenient. Sensible, well-organized logical design would not support this real behavior."

This just made me giggle...I've done late night diaper runs.

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