Below is a copy of an email I sent to one of the design teams we use, I’m hoping it’s self-explanatory.  Feel free to comment on the idea and possible approach.

In TRIP we add around 4-5,000 new articles per month and currently this gets added to the index. In a way this hides it. I feel we could make it much more visible and accessible.

I’m increasingly aware that to search you need to know what you’re looking for ie a known unknown. I want to create a space where people can browse for content without really knowing what they’re looking for, so more like unknown unknowns.

A few points:

  • I’d like users to be able to select the time period (from 1 month to 12 months) perhaps some sort of visual system e.g. slider.
  • I’d like them to be able to select the grade of evidence (we have the slider in the results filter, which could be used/aopted).
  • I’d like to create some specialist areas e.g. view all the latest cardiology articles.
  • But I’d also like them to be able to search e.g. show latest articles on cholesterol
  • But I’d also like them to start with ALL latest evidence and burrow.

I’d hate for it to be a simple list – so boring. I want it to be immersive, I want them to enjoy exploring the data. I’d like it to be visual. I quite like the idea of using a word cloud to help navigate. But is that good? Old fashioned?

I’m still at very early stages of my thoughts and am quite keen to have some input from a design perspective.

Do you fancy doing a little bit of work on this? I’m not expecting proper designs, perhaps some outlines? I’m not saying this should be design led but I think it could help guide my thoughts on how/if it develops.