Interesting elsewhere: predictions, reactions and the case for LOLcats on your #intranet

It’s been a busy week for the four Intranetizens – publishing a whopping three posts – but that’s not stopped us from keeping up to speed on the latest news in the world of intranets, web design and the digital workplace.

With intranet pros returning to work after the Christmas break, there’s been a raft of comment and predictions for the year ahead, as well as round ups of 2012 reading.

This week saw the publication of Neilsen Norman’s 2013 design annual. We disagreed with some of the conclusions, and so did many of you. We hope Neilsen Norman take this feedback on board in future years.

And here’s our round-up of essential reading this frosty Friday:

  • What a beautiful intranet looks like: Enterprise International Singapore were named winner of IBF’s Beautiful Intranet (Goes Social) this week, with an IBF Live session featuring our own Luke Mepham. Ragan have produced a great summary of the live session, including some useful tips.
  • Why Kindle is one of the gold standards for enterprise mobility: James Robertson argues that, if mobile devices are to be real alternatives to the PC, they need to work in the same seamless and synchronised way the Kindle does. Thought-provoking stuff, and more grist to the mill for the argument enterprise apps need to aim for consumer-level standards of functionality and UX.
  • The user experience of news: UX guru Martin Belham says website owners should stop comparing themselves to others in the same sector, because users don’t compare their news app experience with other news apps, they compare them against all of the apps that they ever use, some of which pour huge resources into making them excellent all the way through. In our view, intranet owners should remember this same basic point; your users don’t compare your intranet now to the intranet three years ago, or other intranets in your sector, but to all the other websites they use. Benchmarking against other intranets has its uses, but it has shortcomings to as this isn’t the kind of comparison your users make – they compare your intranet to Facebook, the BBC and other websites, and that’s why your intranet’s so often found wanting.
  • How collaboration tools can improve knowledge work: A useful case study from Harvard Business Review
  • Enterprise 2.0 meets the LOLcats: Echoing a point we’ve made about the value of not obviously work-related content on social intranets, Allen Moreles argues posts about sport and pictures of LOLcats help to humanise your users and create a vibrant culture of collaboration. Steve Radick makes a similar point on AIIM.