Information science

Information science is an interdisciplinary science primarily concerned with the collection, classification, manipulation, storage, retrieval and dissemination of information.

Information science should not be confused with information theory

Information science studies the application and usage of knowledge in organizations, and the interaction between people, organizations and information systems.  Mistakenly it is often considered a branch of computer science. It is actually a broad, interdisciplinary field, incorporating not only aspects of computer science, but also library science, cognitive, and social sciences.

Information science focuses on understanding problems from the perspective of the stakeholders involved and then applying information (and other) technology as needed. In other words, it tackles systemic problems first rather than individual pieces of technology within that system. In this respect, information science can be seen as a response to technological determinism, the belief that technology “develops by its own laws, that it realizes its own potential, limited only by the material resources available, and must, therefore, be regarded as an autonomous system controlling and ultimately permeating all other subsystems of society.”  Within information science, attention has been given in recent years to human–computer interaction, groupware, the semantic web, value-sensitive design, iterative design processes and to the ways people generate, use and find information.

Information science should not be confused with information theory, the study of a particular mathematical concept of information, or with library science, a field related to libraries which uses some of the principles of information science.

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