Whenever I’m mapping an information environment, I ask myself the following questions:

  • What domain of human activity does this information environment serve? (Healthcare? Financial services? Entertainment? Etc.)

  • Who uses this environment?

  • How much do they understand about this domain before engaging with the environment?

  • What do they expect to find there?

  • What do they call those things?

  • What are the most natural divisions for the parts of the environment?

  • Do those individual components need to be separate environments themselves?

  • How do people expect those components to relate to each other?

  • What unexpected relationships between elements must the environment accommodate?

  • What goals do users expect to accomplish in this environment?

  • What business goals must this environment serve? In what time frame?

  • Are the business and user goals in alignment?

  • Are the business and user time perspectives aligned?

  • Where are the boundaries of the environment?

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