by Cameron Moll
Knowing how to create teams that can design, iterate, build, and get to the finish line as soon as possible is one of the most challenging things to figure out in our industry. Over the course of an hour, Cameron Moll will show you how to work internally on interactive projects through various team scenarios, such as:
1) You're the only person in the organization tasked to do all things web-related for the company
2) You're the only web person, but the CEO or marketing department call all the shots (and it's really frustrating)
3) You work with one other designer or developer (or both) internally
4) You work with several other designers/developers
5) You work with several other designers/developers, and they're really not all that great
6) You need outsourced help such as a pinch-hitter designer, developer, content strategist, etc.
Join Chris Converse as he explores (and explains) the more advanced concepts in Responsive Web Design by adding in Responsive Web Experiences. By incorporating jQuery into your design, you can take more control over the user experience of a site, and even change the experience based on the user's screen size—just as you do with layout and style. You’ll even learn how to alter input behaviors by switching mouse events to touch when on touch-enabled devices, leading to a truly customized experience for each user.
Learn how to pick the right tool for the job, when the tools (and sometimes the jobs) are constantly evolving. From desktop design and development tools to online/mobile solutions for building and managing interactive projects, the purpose of this session is to identify real world solutions and tools for interactive designers and design teams.
Matthew Richmond will take a look at creative design tools, wireframing/prototyping tools, site building and content management solutions as well as project management and communication tools, focusing on solid solutions and establishing a clear path so you know what you should be focusing on next.
The competitive analysis is crucial to research in branding, website and product design. If done right, it should lead to insight about the landscape that generates ideas on how to solve visual and UX problems.
To make sure your analysis is on the right track, Stuart Silverstein will showcase different types of competitive analysis available to visual and UX designers, explain the techniques for documentation, as help you see what insights you should look for in each type of analysis. Finally, he’ll look at how your analysis should influence design decisions and help you create a better product.
Discover tools you can use to gain a deeper understanding of your audience's needs, and learn how to incorporate what you’ve discovered into their design work as frog’s David Sherwin explains the importance of knowing your audience.
Gaps in knowledge about your user's needs are what most often cause a website or application to fail to meet a user's expectations. In this talk, David will demystify the role and use of research in the day-to-day work of an interactive designer. He’ll draw on his own experience as a design research lead for frog, where he helps coordinate teams in conducting U.S.-based and global research programs. You’ll walk away with a list of resources you can draw from to begin practicing specific research methods and tools. You’ll also learn how to sell the value of research to your client's boss's boss—it's not as hard as it looks!
When web designers start a new project, one of the first challenges they face is how to organize the site. What content needs to be accommodated? What information is primary, and what’s secondary? What should the navigation consist of?
In this session, Brian Miller will give you a detailed look at information architecture (and help you answer all those questions). He’ll take you through site map planning, wireframes, information hierarchy, and more. You’ll learn how to think about the elements of a Web page—headers and footers, sidebars and features…everything that contributes to how intuitive a site is to use and navigate. You’ll see what works and why—and also learn what to avoid. You’ll walk away with the ability to put yourself in the user’s shoes, and to think like an information architect.
For years, designers and developers have griped about the difficulties they encountered in supporting the numerous desktop browsers out there, but mobile is even more fragmented. Phones, tablets, media players, video game systems—each device (and in some cases each browser on each device) has its own dimensions, quirks and capabilities. It can make your brain hurt just thinking about it.
Thankfully, going mobile doesn’t have to be a painful experience. In this session, Aaron Gustafson will introduce you to the concept of progressive enhancement and demonstrate why it is the way forward for web design, especially on mobile devices. In the course of his talk, he’ll walk you through progressive enhancement’s layered approach and show you how the latest techniques—mobile first, responsive design, and adaptive UI—fit in to the process. Along the way, he’ll show you tons of examples and give you lots of great ideas you can put to use in your own projects.
oin Patrick McNeil as he digs into web hosting, DNS, domain names and all the technology required to host a web site—because knowing how site hosting works is one of the most basic elements of working on the web.
Lack of understanding can be a point of frustration for designers and clients as well, but having a little knowledge can help you engage your technical team, solve very simple (but real) problems for clients and really better understand how the web works.
And don't worry, this designer friendly presentation will focus on the practical application of these principles.
by Laura Franz
So you know what web fonts are and how to make them load in your websites. Now What? Join design professor Laura Franz as she shares techniques for finding, testing, and using web fonts. You’ll learn how to determine what font provider is best for you and your client, if a web font works well cross browser, and what web fonts others are using. You’ll even learn tricks for using web fonts, such as how to avoid faux bold and italic on your site, updated rules of typography to improve readability on screen, and what to look for in a fallback font.
Get a fun, but in-depth look at Wordpress theming with Jesse Friedman. He’ll teach you how to turn static websites into dynamic Wordpress powered themes, using specific code, best practices, and strategies. By the end of the session, you’ll have a basic understanding of Wordpress—plus all the resources necessary to continue your education on your own.
Feedback is essential. Without it, there is no way to know if what we've created is actually useful. When it comes to interactive design, the best feedback systems follow a simple pattern: Questions > Answers > Action. In this session, you'll learn how to make sense of the data available to you, whether it comes from analytics tools or users themselves, and use it to improve your designs.
by Raj Lal
Join Rajesh Lal as he shows you how to design an interface that supports people with disabilities—and explains why it’s a good business decision.
You’ll learn how to use the latest technologies to accommodate disabled users in the user interface, and see how an Accessible Interface gives maximum reach to your application’s information, functionalities and benefits by allowing multiple input methods, different interaction models, and customization based on special needs and limited device supports.
by James Pannafino
The Web design process is complex and overwhelming at times, but you can use some simple, underrated Web design components to take your design from square one to finished product. You'll learn why each component is important and why you should spend more time on them. This will be a great session for designers new to the interactive field or for those who would like to brush up on their Web design vocabulary.
by Dave Benton
by Paul Boag
With more than 500,000 apps available to consumers, 2012 has been labeled the year of the app. But as you consider your mobile strategy it is legitimate to ask "Do I need an app for that?" This session will use case studies to explore the contexts in which an app is the right solution and also highlight the situations in which other mobile web solutions are the right choice for your users.
* The difference is between a native and a web app
* A working definition of responsive web design
* The importance of understanding user context
* The circumstances in which an app is the right solution and when it is not
Learn how to create adaptive content so you can survive the onslaught of new mobile devices, platforms, and screen sizes—hordes of them!—that are descending on us every day.
Karen McGrane will help you separate your content from its form, so it can adapt appropriately to different contexts and constraints. You’ll learn how to change your production workflow so you’re not just transferring content from one output to another. And you’ll learn the importance of enhancing your content management tools and interfaces so they're ready for the future.
by Emira Mears
Perfect for project managers and leads, digital strategists, designers and developers, this session will give you an overview of the difference between being consultative and collaborative, with concrete examples of how to handle even the most complex interactive design/development projects.
Using her own experiences working on large website design/development projects with multiple stakeholders, Emira Mears will teach you how to involve and educate clients in ways that keep projects on time and on budget—and leaves a trail of satisfied clients behind you.
If you think touch interactivity and content creation for tablet devices is outside your realm, think again. John Kilpatrick is senior VP and executive creative director of The Daily, the first daily news publication custom-made for tablets. He’ll run through some of the best practices for touch interactivity and show you how you can offer the best user experience.
You’ll learn how to make the most of new technology, and learn why it’s important to build a team specifically devoted to content creation for tablet devices.
by Paul Boag
In this session, Paul Boag will explain how he took one ecommerce website from relatively successful beginnings to unbelievable heights. In only 5 years he and the team at Headscape increased sales on the site by a staggering 10,000%. What makes the story even more unbelievable is that the average customer is over 80 years old! This single example will act as a case study that guides you towards better understanding your audience and growing your online sales significantly.
* Why it’s important for the designer and client to work together
* How to build a site based on testing and metrics
* How to focus the user on key functional components such as shopping baskets
* How to reduce cart abandonment
* How to tie together the online and offline experience
In web design, like print design, it takes a while to develop an effective creative process—hours of pushing pixels and creating idealized designs (that the client doesn’t sign off on), making revisions, racking up hours, making more revisions. But eventually, you’ll learn how to make it all work.
That’s the story Troy Lachance will share in this session: lessons from deep in the trenches, hard-earned bits of wisdom forged from a range of disastrous mistakes in process and execution. Teaching from his—and others’—mistakes and successes, he’ll help you firm up your own web design process, from nailing down the structure, to addressing content, navigation and hierarchy, to starting the actual design. You’ll learn how to
* build a discovery process to learn what the client wants, what they like and what they hate
* stage deliverables to silo conversations, get sign-off and keep the project moving
* create wireframes that get done on time (and make the clients are happy)
by Steve Fisher
Learn how to develop a fluid process to match the fluidity of interactive design as Steve shows you why a responsive process is a responsible process. He’ll explore some of his recent work helping clients transform their processes to fit a responsive workflow and share some of the tips, techniques and processes he’s developed. One web to rule them all!
by Mark O'Brien
Is your website a simple brochure or is it a business-generating machine? If it's not constantly attracting, informing, and engaging your prospects you're sitting on an asset that is not serving your business as well as it could—and should—be.
During this session Mark O’Brien will explain how you can transform your online brochure into a tool that will be the centerpiece of your firm's marketing strategy, helping you gain new business, maintain relationships with current clients, and more.
27th–29th September 2012