Human–information interaction research and development

Article Marchionini, G. (2008). Human-Information interaction research and development. Library & Information Science Research 30 165–174 This article argues that the past 30 years have seen a shift from distinct emphases on information, individual people, and specific technologies to emphases on the interactions among more diverse forms and amounts of information, people, and technologies. Human–information interaction shifts the foci of all aspects of information work; blurs boundaries between information objects, technology, and people; and creates new forms of information. This article discusses changes in each of these components of information and trends and challenges surrounding the study of their interactions are presented. The information field is evolving in several ways From focus on stable artifacts to grappling with how people and machines interact with dynamic, morphing information objects From focus on individual information seekers and managers as rational cognitive actors to considering embodied minds in a cyber collective From issues of physical object management to issues of scale, layering and boundary blurs From information management to identity management as instantiated in user profiles, filters (e.g. spam) and personal health records To characterize interaction, it is necessary to specify entities: the nature of the actions, the genesis of the actions (intention), the amplitude (intensity) and frequency of the reciprocity cycles, and the resultant changes in the participating entities. Actions are mental and physical, interactions may be initiated by humans or information objects, the intesity of a specfic cycle can be small or large and the frequencies slow or rapid and regular or chaotic, and the changes are differences in mental states of the human and physical or digital states of information object. In the case of information as mental state, human interactions are internal. The mental state of an individual at any instant in time is defined by a network of activated connections among neuronal cells in the brain. These networks are concepts, impressions, and active memories. Their evolution over time are called thought. These networks can also be called noumenal clouds because they are constantly shifting and evolving. People who know good strategies for interacting with information have definite advantages over those who flounder in a sea of fluid information resources Information scientists must continue to lead the study of the interactions between people, information objects, and tools that define these knowledge repositories. Information scientists must discover new strategies and tools for human–information interaction and teach people how to optimize their efforts.