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Summit 2014 March 26-30 in San Diego

The Path Ahead Lovely San Diego

Wednesday March 26

Full Day - 9AM to 5PM

Susan Mercer, Dan Berlin

Choosing the Right Research Methods For Your Project

It’s very easy for User Experience researchers to get stuck in the rut of using your favorite research methods for gathering information and getting user feedback. But, are you really gathering the best information that you can? Or are there other methods that are better suited for your project’s specific needs? Don’t stress – we’ll walk you through the process of clarifying your research goals to make sure that you focus on the right problems. Then we’ll discuss several methods for initial information gathering – ethnography, interviews, surveys, diary studies, collaging, card-sorting, and focus groups, along with their strengths and weaknesses and what situations they are best suited for.

Andrew Hinton, Jorge Arango

Information Architecture Essentials

Are you responsible for a product or service that has to make sense across multiple channels, devices, or places? Maybe you’re figuring out where and how to integrate new capabilities into an existing website or mobile application? If you’re ever having to determine what things are, where they should go, and how they should connect to everything else, you need information architecture. This new workshop, presented by the Information Architecture Institute, will show you the ropes: what IA is, how you go about it, and what are the main tools and techniques that information architects use to make things more findable and understandable. The workshop will balance theory and practice, with roughly equal time devoted to presentations, open discussion, and hands-on, practical exercises you can use in your projects. It’s appropriate for practitioners who have been doing IA-related work and want to learn more, as well as those who are new to IA practice.

Andrea Resmini, Dan Willis

Architecting Cross-Channel Experiences

Mobile devices now stitch together segments of user experiences that had previously gone unconnected. People accomplish tasks with multiple devices across multiple platforms and using multiple digital and physical services. While this introduces amazing opportunities for UX professionals, the expanded scope also requires skillsets outside of traditional design teams. This workshop will define the areas of expertise required, describe the necessary tools, and explore processes teams can use to effectively map cross-channel experiences.

Stephen P. Anderson, Karl Fast

Design for Understanding

This “Design for Understanding” workshop looks at various ways you can help people make sense of confusing information. Bridging theory from cognitive sciences with plenty of practical examples, you’ll learn how to design rich, visual interactions that encourage people to play with and explore difficult concepts.

Morning - 8:30AM to 12:30PM

Megan Grocki

Customer Journey Mapping: Illustrating the Big Picture

Journey maps are a powerful tool. Using them to define a vision, a story of the ultimate “blue sky” experience you’d like users to have across all of their interactions with your organization, you can provide guidance in the design of a consistent, cohesive service, regardless of channels and touch points. In this workshop participants will learn how journey maps can be used to illustrate a relationship between a customer and an organization over time and across channels, which tools / methods can be used to conduct a journey workshop, how to socialize these deliverables with key stakeholders, and how maintain the journeys.

Russ Unger, Brad Nunnally

The Workshop Workshop

You have attended workshops, you have seen them masterfully commanded by other people, and you really want to get a handle on doing this workshop thing yourself. This workshop is the workshop that will help you create and facilitate a workshop of your very own, be it for your teams or your clients.

Afternoon - 1:30PM to 5:30PM

Marianne Sweeny

Using SEO to Enhance the Discovery Experience

In the glory days of the early to mid-2000′s, information architecture and user experience enjoyed a well-deserved bask in the limelight and even interaction design played nice. Then, search engines showed up like the baby brother who steals all the attention. Google changed from a dream search engine to an algorithmic bully by calculating what is a good user experience. Knowledge is power and in this workshop I will cover how IA and UX can and should take back the helm.

Dan Brown

Tools Are Not Enough: Better Collaboration for UX Teams – SOLD OUT

Like many managers, you may wonder, “How can my team collaborate better?” “Basecamp” doesn’t sufficiently answer the question. Nor does “Skype.” Great collaboration isn’t just about using better tools. Instead, it depends on clarity, accountability, awareness, and openness. Teams seeking to fine-tune their collaboration must incorporate these virtues into their tools, attitudes, and environment. In this workshop, you will learn what it takes for a team to collaborate effectively.

Thursday March 27

Full Day - 9AM to 5PM

Jared Spool, Dan Willis

Advanced Presentation Techniques: How to Talk to Stakeholders, Peers, and Clients

Unicorn-level UX work is worthless if you can’t effectively present it to a project’s other key players. In this raucous workshop, you will participate in a series of scenarios involving clients, stakeholders and peers. Jared Spool, one of the community’s most successful speakers is teaming up with Dan Willis, founder of the Cranky Talk Workshop for New Speakers, to help user experience professionals master the planning, design and execution of the presentations and facilitated conversations needed to successfully move solutions through organizations.

Chris Baum, Brian OKelley

Turning Stakeholders Into Co-designers

Whether you are a consultant or an internal designer, you work with these people we generally call “stakeholders.” Whether or not they are providing the budget, stakeholders need to be invested in the success of the project such that they can go back to their team, even to their management, and build a convincing argument for participation. At the same time, these people can provide access to customers, customer data and subject matter expertise that can help to lay an empirical baseline for the design. In this workshop, we will take you through some of the practices we use every day to transform our “stakeholders” into co-creators.

Jason Hobbs, Terence Fenn

Teaching IA: A Round Table Discussion

Today’s students of IA will be the ones to forge the path ahead in the years to come. Karen McGrane’s 2013 closing keynote called for a doubling down on IA and this not only includes how we sell and position our practice in the marketplace but also how we educate our next generation of learners. The workshop will take the form of short, ignite style presentations by authors whose papers have completed a formal double-blind peer review process. Following this, academics and practitioners will be brought together to explore key issues central to the teaching of IA.

Morning - 8:30AM to 12:30PM

Jessica DuVerneay, Alberta Soranzo

Taming Taxonomy: A Practical Intro

Is the word “taxonomy” intimidating? You bet, but taxonomy is a crucial structural element to consider for optimal cross channel information environments. In this fun, informal, beginning/midlevel practitioner-focused workshop, Los Angeles area information architects and taxonomy nerds Alberta Soranzo and Jessica DuVerneay will present a case study and tool demonstration and facilitate hands-on exercises.

Steve Fisher

Responsive Content Modeling – SOLD OUT

Just as a Sitemap describes the hierarchical structure of a website, Content Models describe all of the content types on the new, target site, the elements of each, and prioritizes the type of content that ought to appear on a specific page type. It helps us define the content creation, design, and user experience concepts for the new site. This is especially important for the responsive web. This workshop will guide participants through the discovery of their core piece of content and how to map all the relationships that orbit around it.

Afternoon - 1:30PM to 5:30PM

Russ Unger, Amanda Schonfeld

Career Workshop – SOLD OUT

The Career Workshop is a free half-day session that helps attendees prepare for a job search. Attendees will share experiences and challenges that they have encountered, and will be provided with insights and guidance to help them navigate the often-challenging job-seeker landscape.

Jim Kalbach

UX Strategy: Using Design to Solve Business Problems – SOLD OUT

Businesses typically view UX design as a tactical activity. More and more, however, companies are turning to UX as a source of strategic growth. For many UX designers this represents a new challenge requiring an expanded skill set. This workshop provides a solid background for understanding, building and communicating an effective UX Strategy.