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AIfIA, WSJ, and the PDB

In today’s Wall Street Journal the Asilomar Institute for Information Architecture achieved something we wished for from the beginning, notice in the mainstream press. The story, Redesiging the PDB, quotes Wodtke and Morville among others in discussing how IA could influence attention paid to the infamous Presidential Daily Brief on Bin Laden.

Unfortunately, the design community can’t agree on something as simple as Greg Storey’s one-page PDB redesign versus the undesigned original. One would think any attention paid to this document would be a good thing, but Edward Tufte disagrees, stating, ‘I think the design’s irrelevant.’ I hope that’s just the reporter screwing up his words.

Perhaps the most cogent statement came from Janice Fraser who pointed to the intentions of the document’s originators: ‘[Mr. Storey’s redesign] shifts responsibility — and, moreover, accountability — for interpretation to the analyst or advisor who prepares the brief.

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