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Book Review: Donna Spencer’s Card Sorting

cardsorting-lgA few months back, I had lunch with some colleagues (adam Polansky and Stephen Thomas). We started our lunch with a brief chat about Donna Spencer’s Card Sorting: Designing Usable Categories.

Anyway, Spencer’s book is refreshing in its step-by-step approach to card sorting. Tips and tricks are speckled in its chapter. At each step of the card sort process, Spencer provides real-world examples of card sort projects, where a lesson was learned (sometimes, the hard way).

High-Level Book Review

You are going to really love the real-world examples, anecdotes, and stories. My favorite real-world example was a card sort project, where Spenser prepared the project, but she handed it off to another person, who was ill prepared to execute the project. The results are both comical and tragic. The results were not usable. They had to repeat the card sort.

According to Spencer, a card sort strategy revolves around three key things: type of card sort (open or closed), participation strategy (individual vs team), and execution strategy (manual, software, or combination). Adam and Stephen used this framework to make decisions on our project. They did a great job!

Get This Book

You can either buy this book at the Big Design Confernece or buy it from the Rosenfeld Media website using the promo code of BIGDESIGN10.

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