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David Lee King

Idea from Designing for the Social Web



Just read/skimmed Joshua Porter’s book, Designing for the Social Web (Voices That Matter). In all, it’s a good book that has lots of great ideas for building social sites. The book focuses first on defining what the social web is, and then spends the rest of the book discussing design and interface problems for the social web, and how to fix those things.

One idea I wanted to share (and to remember for my own future use) is this, from page 34:

“So how do you avoid feature creep when creating and adding features? Start with your objects, your nouns. Observe all the actions people do with/perform on those objects, and those are possible features for your application.”

So, for example, a list of nouns or objects might be Videos, Articles, Photos, and Books. The Verbs, or actions, for Articles include things like this: read, archive for later, quote, link to, share, comment on, annotate, etc.

Cool idea! So – when building a new website or web app, this is a great way to figure out what it should do, and what features it should have (and what features people will potentially ask for, too).

pic by Ben Dodson

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • http://commonplace.net/ Lukas Koster

    David, cool idea, yes, but not a very new one ;-) This has been part of my data modeling with entity relationship diagrams “education” many years ago already. “Nothing new under the sun”….

  • http://commonplace.net Lukas Koster

    David, cool idea, yes, but not a very new one ;-) This has been part of my data modeling with entity relationship diagrams “education” many years ago already. “Nothing new under the sun”….

  • Sheli

    Hi David,
    I think this is great! It’s always important to remember what we do, what business we’re in, and not lose focus of that. It’s easy to get bigger and bigger with ideas and apps and tools….but it all comes back to the books and reading, right? Keep it simple! Thanks for the great tip!
    Sheli

  • Sheli

    Hi David,
    I think this is great! It’s always important to remember what we do, what business we’re in, and not lose focus of that. It’s easy to get bigger and bigger with ideas and apps and tools….but it all comes back to the books and reading, right? Keep it simple! Thanks for the great tip!
    Sheli