What is the main role of information architect?

I asked my self this question when a friend of mine had asked me to help him with a new project. The project was to design a platform for a new social network for saudi students. This social network aims to bring students from different disciplines to discuss some common problems facing our Saudi societies. The main challenges of the project were to find a sponsor and how to convince students from different academic backgrounds to be active in this network. Therefore, a proper team need to be created, and among them must be a computer specialist or a programer and information architect.

The first logical questions in the first meeting were whether we need to make a new platform for this website or to use a ready once, and what the best language for social networks should we use if we will make our own platform. the majority of the team agreed to design this social network from scratch. However, through the meeting, many questions have jumped in my head such as what are the main similarities and differences between a computer specialist or programer and information architect, and how as librarians will be able to contribute effectively to this project. I must say, I am lucky to study this course as it will provide me with the answers of my questions.

When I have looked at the revolution of computer and internet over the time, and their influences on designing different websites and the way of structuring and displaying information on these website, I realised the importance of the knowledge of information architecture in this modern time. Nowadays, universities, companies, public libraries and other societies form different specialities are in competition with each others to design their website in a unique way in order to display their information effectively.

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