Episode 108 of The Informed Life podcast features a conversation with Carrie Hane. Carrie is an evangelist at Sanity, a cloud-based content platform provider. She is also co-author (alongside Mike Atherton) of Designing Connected Content1, which advocates for content modeling as part of the digital design process. This is also the subject of our conversation.
As Carrie put it, the book offers “a framework for publishing digital content across any channel.” This starts with modeling the domain and then creating a model of the content the organization wants to represent. When the models are done, designers can work on user interfaces. One advantage to this approach is that
Websites don’t have to be disposable anymore because you don’t have to redo the content every time because it’s more semantic and intentional than just serving one website need.
But the web is one of several means through which content can be served: another advantage of this approach is that it allows for content to be modularly deployed through other channels:
We [Sanity] have customers who use it to run fast food chain menus and apps for customer service apps and all kinds of things. You can even export and print a book on demand based on the content. So, it’s more than just a web content management system.
If your work calls for structuring digital content, it behooves you to check out Carrie and Mike’s book. This conversation is a good primer.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that Carrie is one of the keynote speakers at this year’s Information Architecture Conference, which takes place in New Orleans from March 28 - April 1. I’ll also teach an introductory IA workshop at the conference, so if you want to learn about IA and can get to the southern U.S. in late March, come see Carrie and me at the IAC.
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