Presenting "Video Ethnography: Industrial Strength" at Big Design Conference (photo credit: J. Johnson)I just want to say thanks to all that stuck around to attend my presentation at Big Design 2012 and to say an extra big thanks to my wife for putting up with me while the extra pressure of completing my deck in time made me less fun to be around for a few days.
Relieved to be finished (photo credit: J. Johnson)
Big Design Conference 21012 kicks off in Addison today. Two full days of speakers, presentations and networking. I am in full recruiting mode so I hope to meet and greet a lot of folks.
My talk is on Saturday at 4pm, the last slot before the closing keynote. Stop and check it out if you can ... I will definitely make it enjoyable.
Just a few of my stream of concious notes from Adaptive Path's MX 2012.
From Geneveive Bell, Director of Interaction and Experience, Intel Labs
- Geneveive Bell explained the difference between exogenous vs. endogenous organizations. It greatly impacts the organization's culture.
- UX needs to work ahead -- way ahead of the rest of the company.
- We have moved from an economy of interactions to a economy of relationships.
- UX Ethnography -- We're not just a bunch of glorified tape recorders.
- Remember, you are the custodian of your users' stories.
- Tell users' stories right. Give them power.
- On every new product or redesign ask the same question: where are your insights?
UX is a point of vew. UX is an assemblage. UX is an intervention. An intervention is disruptive.
"I am asking for a different outcome."
UX Recruiting in a Competitive Landscape by K. Myers and M. Fuentealba
- Make a roadmap for recruiting – Like requirements and features for a product, a resource can be planned for in the very same way.
- Create accurate job descriptions – A lot of managers make the descs too broad out of desperation and needing to cast a wider net. This is actually more detrimental to the remainder of the hiring lifecycle.
- Partner early with recruiters – Whether internal or external, frequent meetings to really mind meld about the person/hard skill set you are seeking.
- Rally your core interview team – Meet in advance and really have a plan for the interview. Never interview without them.
- Make them love you – This is a critical step. You have to differentiate why your company and particularly your team are better than any place else they may choose to work. Court them.
- Act fast – Most UX pros interviewing nearly always have multiple interviews. They will take a slow response to mean that they might need to take an offer elsewhere.
And now random stuff without much in the way of attribution.
- Organizations in which people feel they have little influence over matters that affect them become cultures of complaint. - from Exercising Influence by B. Kim Barnes
- Three trends creating new opportunities and threats: ubiquitous access, social networking and collaborating, Internet of Things (aka The Industrial Internet).
View From the Wobbly Room
I was in San Francisco attending Adaptive Path's MX 2012 conference when I was 'gently' awakened by an earthquake. Although it was only a 4.0 on the Richter Scale, it felt like it was punching above its weight as I felt in on the 15th floor of my hotel. Nice bit of amplification indeed. Being in a wobbling highrise was a first for me. It was actually kind of cool. It would be even cooler if it never happens again.
Ashley V. and Me on The Living Roof (Photo Credit: A. Veselka)One of the sponsored events at UX Week was the trip to the California Academy of Sciences Nightlife outing. During that event, my dear friend Ashley and I made it up onto The Living Roof. The experience was priceless. The $7 cans of Tecate, overpriced.
UPDATE: Check out the fantastic photo set of the event from Wild Plum Photography.
Luke Wroblewski's Slide Says What We're All Thinking
Ok, this post is just not going to cut it. I don't even know where to begin to recap all that I learned at UX Week. My notes are strewn across several notebooks. This doesn't even count the dozens of photos I took of the presentation screen in lieu of taking notes. To be consistent with my last post, I am just going to fake it with a random bunch of thoughts. Try to enjoy.
If you need a great place to stay in downtown San Francisco, I highly suggest the Hotel Palomar. I am cuckoo for Coa Coa Puffs for feather pillows. My bed had six of them.Little Glub Glub This pet-friendly hotel was very generous in providing me with a loaner pet for the week, a little fellow I named Glub Glub. When I wasn't hanging out with GG, I could be found on the fifth floor lounge, where you have to try the Beer, Bourbon, and Burger. This 'meal' includes a fantastic micro brew, a 15-year old handcrafted bourbon and a Comte cheeseburger paired with a side of rosemary shoestring potatoes.
My only complaint with the hotel was how far it was in relation to the conferenc, thus affording me several unwanted chances to take public transportation in addition to the already mentioned awesomeness of Uber (last post).
Other random recollections about food include Patxi's Pizza and Regent Thai, both in Noe Valley. Regent might possibly be the best Thai food in all of San Francisco. If you go, get the Golden Bags appetizer.
Oh right. I am supposed to be sharing the goods on UX Week. All the presentations and workshops were outstanding. Here are a few standouts:
- Luke Wroblewski had an epic all-day workshop on Designing Mobile Web Experiences. If gestural design is something you are spending time on these days, get his Touch Gesture Reference Guide. Need even more mobile design goodness? Check out the good people at Yiibu.
- Despite my love/hate relationship with Facebook, Paul Adams, Product Manager at Facebook gave a jaw dropping preso.
- Adam Lisagor gave a very entertaining presentation on storytelling and video production. I cannot remember much of it but I do know you should seek him and his work out if you have any video production in your future. He knows what he is talking about.
- Stephen Anderson gave his Seductive Interaction Design workshop and rocked the house as usual. His role-playing skit where he interacts with a girl pretending to be the browser is pretty funny stuff.
- Thursday night's outing to the California Academy of Sciences was a brilliant alternative to the usual sponsored happy hour.
- Adaptive Path announced the release of their iPad app, containing more than 100 speakers' presentations from the past several years of UX and MX conferences. Get moving and download it immediately.
- Did you have any idea that your comfy chair was killing you? Say hello to my favorite new infographic.
- Darren David showed us the future of UX with emerging technologies. Related sites that you need to visit immediately are: Jess3, Stimulant, and Oblong.
- Session Sketchbooks are all the rage at conferences these days. Here are many from UX Week. Check out this fantastic collection from these sessions.
- To really capture the sights of UX Week, I leave it to the very capable Wild Plum Photography.
Okay, I admit it. I am failing badly at cataloging all that I saw at UX Week 2011. After four days of super dense, thought provoking content, my brain is rendered a bit mushy. Maybe it's the altitude as I am trying to write all of this at 32,000 feet en route to DFW. Maybe it's the in-flight internet service that I will from now on refer to only as Slo-Slo.
UX Week 2011 is now the fourth Adaptive Path conference I've attended and they continue to get better every year. Do yourself a real solid favor - sign up for the next one right away.
Steven Pemberton at UX Week 2011
In typical Adaptive Path fashion, UX Week is a marathon of information overload. I couldn't possibly recap all that has been presented so far so I will not even attempt it. I do want to capture a few things that bear writing down.
- The iPhone app Uber is completely awesome. Slightly more expensive than a taxi, but a better experience in every way. Two thumbs up.
- I finally signed up for Beluga to keep in touch with some other conference attendees. Yeah, I am late to the party on this one.
- Ate at my first Irish Bar/Indian Curry House. Strange at first but a pairing that makes more and more sense as you think about it. Just remember, moderation is your friend and I am not talking about the beer.
- Opening day of presentations were largely very cerebral -- a lot like a day at TED conference. I will not even try to parse it all at this time.
- Learned about The Ikea Effect - the idea that labor enhances affection for better results. For example, early cake mixes failed initially but sold much better when they changed the directions requiring users to add a single egg. This had the effect of making consumers feel like they were cooking instead of just using a cake mix.
- Extremely interesting opening keynote by Jaron Lanier. But why take notes when Luke W took notes for all of us? Check out my video of Jaron playing a 13,000 year old Laotian instrument that he posits represents the first 'bits' ever conceived by humans.
- Saw a crazy homeless lady singing her butt off in a subway station. It was like Janis Joplin and Mahalia Jackson had a love child who could sing better than her parents.
More details to come.
Heading to San Francisco for UX Week put on by Adaptive Path. In the meantime, I am doing my level best to photograph and take note of all the things that Virgin America does extremely right. The planes have a sort of night club vibe with the pink lights and sleek black leather seats. There are literally dozens and dozens of experience design details that make this my favorite domestic carrier. And all of this in-flight awesomeness will find its way into a slide deck soon.