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It is usually a pictorial representation (Merriam-Webster online dictionary). An icon can be a metaphor when such a metaphor is appropriate. When a metaphor cannot be found for an icon, the design of such an icon will take special effort in term of user testing.

information artifact

See artifact.

information processing

Within cognitive science, problem solving is seen as an information-processing activity [See computational metaphor (of cognition)], in which encoded information is acted on and transformed in the resolution of a goal held by a cognitive entity.

information psychophysics

The application of visual psychophysical techniques to perception of information conveyed through a visual representation.

information scent

The relation of environmental cues in the environment (such as bibliographic citations, or World Wide Web link text) to users’ assessments of the value of information sources.

information visualizations

The use of computer-supported, interactive, visual representations of abstract data to amplify cognition.

information-foraging theory

A framework that employs an adaptationist methodology to develop quantitative and computational psychological models of user strategies for seeking, gathering, and consuming information.

informational equivalence

Two representations that contain the same information. See also computational equivalence.


a technique used in object-oriented programming to share attributes and behavior among related classes;  superclasses specify common behaviors, and subclasses extend the superclasses with specialized attributes or behaviors

interaction design (ID)

mechanisms for accessing and manipulating the elements of an information design to facilitate the user’s goal selection, action planning, and action execution

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