Sessions at Webstock 2012 with video

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Thursday 16th February 2012

  • Of Time and the Network

    by Jeremy Keith

    Our perception and measurement of time has changed as our civilisation has evolved. That change has been driven by networks, from trade routes to the internet. Now that we have the real-time web allowing instantaneous global communication, there's a danger that we may neglect our legacy for the future. While the web has democratised publishing, allowing anyone to share ideas with a global audience, it doesn’t appear to be the best medium for preserving our cultural resources: websites and documents disappear down the digital memory hole every day. But we can change that. This presentation will offer an alternative history of technology and a fresh perspective on the future that is ours to save.

    At 9:50am to 10:30am, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

  • Culture of Fear + Attention Economy = ?!?!

    by danah boyd

    We live in a culture of fear. Fear feeds on attention and attention is captured by fear. Social media has complicated our relationship with attention and the rise of the attention economy highlights the challenges of dealing with this scarce resource. But what does this mean for the culture of fear? How are the technologies that we design to bring the world together being used to create new divisions? In this talk, danah will explore what happens at the intersection of the culture of fear and the attention economy.

    At 11:00am to 11:40am, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage video note

  • Deconstructing Delight: Pleasure, Flow, and Meaning

    by Dana Chisnell

    There’s a lot of talk going around right now about designing for delight and gameification. You know what? Giving you a badge for getting your expense report done on time probably isn’t going to make you any happier or more likely to do it on time next time. And delight is temporary -- people habituate pretty quickly.

    There’s a vast difference, though, between designing an experience that doesn’t suck and one that drives engagement. We’re good at eliminating frustration. It’s easy to observe whether your customers are pissed off, and then just not do that. But that’s really not enough anymore. Users’ expectations are higher.

    Some companies are doing it - they’re creating great experiences. From the outside, it looks effortless. But you know it’s not. The user part of you is like, wow, now this is really nice, I get it, in fact, I don’t want to live without it. The designer part of you is going, holy crap, how’d they do that -- it’s really hard!

    In this session, we’ll look at a nifty framework for thinking about and talking about what I call three levels of happy design. The framework is based on research done over the last couple of years looking into behavioral economics, hedonics, positive psychology, the importance of adult play, emotion in design, and a whole bunch of other stuff better saved for the talk.

    At 11:45am to 12:25pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage video note

  • Mobile: Don't Break the Web

    by Estelle Weyl

    Your phone's browser may be more advanced than your computer's browser, but chances are that the phone itself may have similar memory and bandwidth constraints to the computer you threw out (recycled?) 5 years ago. While your desktop and mobile users may be using equally modern browsers to access the web, the devices themselves create various constraints that you need to consider. When it comes to mobile, you always need to think about battery life, latency, memory and UI responsiveness. In this session we'll discuss best practices to make sure your site's CSS, JS and HTML perform, no matter how your user is accessing your content.

    At 11:45am to 12:25pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Illot theatre, Wellington Town Hall

  • Little Big Systems

    by Erin Kissane

    It's really easy to understand the lure of small, artisanal projects that we can polish to a satin finish: they offer a sense of craftsmanship, a human scale for our work, and the chance to get something really *right*. But larger projects and bigger systems can often feel soulless and unsatisfying, even when we're excited by the causes and ideas behind them. So is there a way to work on an ambitious scale without losing the purpose and handcraftedness that makes more intimate gigs so much fun? (Hint: yes.)

    Via the craft of content strategy and its intertwinglements with design and code, this talk follows the connections between making small-scale, handcrafted artifacts and designing big, juicy systems (editorial and otherwise) that encourage both liveliness and excellence.

    At 1:20pm to 2:00pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage video note

  • Acting on Data

    by Nick Mihailovski

    We have more data at our disposal than ever before. Learn 10 things you should do in 2012 to make the most of it.

    At 2:05pm to 2:45pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video

  • Within Reach: Publishing for the iPad

    by Jennifer Brook

    Two years ago, the announcement and subsequent launch of the iPad catalyzed a strange mix of euphoria and panic in the boardrooms and newsrooms of the publishing industry. The hope for broadening their reach and appealing to new markets has been coupled with the challenge of shifting reader expectations and behavior as an onslaught of new products continue to redefine what's possible. With a front seat view into the strategy and design of these new products and apps, Jennifer will reveal what went right, wrong, and what might be next.

    At 2:05pm to 2:45pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Illot theatre, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video

  • Lessons from a 40 year old

    by Matt Haughey

    Matt will cover a bunch of lessons he’s learned in the past decade of life as he embarks on turning 40. They eschew much of the Techcrunch/ReadWriteWeb/Mashable world by focusing on taking a longer term view of your work and focusing on life/work balance and having a happy life as well as a fulfilling career.

    At 2:50pm to 3:30pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

  • Kinking Reality

    by Lauren Beukes

    Fantastical storytelling is at its most potent when it's anchored to reality. Lauren Beukes talks about why she writes strange and twisty fiction from novels to comics to TV shows and the occasional ARG, and how storytelling that re-imagines where we are has the ability to tell us more about who we are. Short Q&A to follow.

    At 4:00pm to 4:40pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video

  • Change the Game

    by Amy Hoy

    If anyone's ever told you, "You can't do that," you're playing the game. If you've ever had a flash of insight, a sudden desire to do something, and then told yourself "That'll never work," you're playing the game. If you feel like you're being nibbled to death by ducks — slowly, painfully, irritatingly — then chances are high you're playing the game. We all play the game. It's just that most of us never realize we're playing it. But when you learn to spot the game in all its manifestations, you can change it. You can change everything.

    At 4:45pm to 5:25pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage video note

  • How to get a buttcrapload of people to read what you write

    by Matthew Inman

    Web-designer-turned-comic-artist Matthew Inman (AKA The Oatmeal), will talk about how he makes things on the web that are highly likable. His talk will include various tips, tools, and ideas for generating and promoting great content. There will also be poop jokes.

    At 5:30pm to 6:10pm, Thursday 16th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video

Friday 17th February 2012

  • The Anatomy of a Design Decision

    by Jared M. Spool

    What are the habits of highly effective design teams? The best designs come from not one, but hundreds of well-made decisions. The worst designs arise out of hundreds of poorly-made decisions. All that stands between you and a great design is the qualify of your decisions. Where do they come from?

    For the last five years, we've been studying how designers make their decisions. When do they use outside information, such as research about their users? When do they go with their gut instinct? When do the designers look to past decisions and the lessons they've learned?

    What we found will surprise you. In this presentation, Jared will take you on an entertaining deep dive into the gut instinct of the best designers (without looking at all the gooey parts). You'll learn five styles of decision making, from Self Design to Experience-focused Design, and which style produces quality results. Prepare to learn how to be a better designer, as Jared shares the secrets of the best and worst.

    At 9:05am to 10:05am, Friday 17th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video

  • In Lulz We Trust

    by Gabriella Coleman

    Agents of activism and naughty mischief, Anonymous has been a constant fixture in the news due to their blizzard of interventions from taking down half a dozen websites in a single day to protest web censorship to assisting the historic revolutions in the Middle East and Africa. Drawing on three years of serious ethnographic research (re: chatting online, a lot), this talk will visit few of their major operations in order to address the political significance of their tactics and most especially, the lulz.

    At 10:10am to 10:50am, Friday 17th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage video note

  • It's not what you read, it's what you ignore

    by Scott Hanselman

    How did we get here? As web developers, we are asked to absorb even more information than ever before. More APIs, more documentation, more patterns, more layers of abstraction. Now Twitter and Facebook compete with Email and Texts for our attention, keeping us up-to-date on our friends dietary details and movie attendance second-by-second. Young people rule the web and are more interested in the news of the last 10 minutes than the news of the last 10 years. Does all this information take a toll on their (and your) psyche or sharpen the saw? Let's find out how to stop being thought-leaders and start being do-leaders.

    At 11:15am to 11:55am, Friday 17th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage video note

  • Pressure, defense, and responses

    by Raffi Krikorian

    From sending out life saving information during emergencies, or letting the millions of @ladygaga's monsters know her latest thought, at Twitter the name of the game is "now." I'll talk about how three key words -- pressure, defense, and responses -- describe the challenges involved in running the world's largest real-time service.

    At 12:00pm to 12:40pm, Friday 17th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video

  • When we build

    by Wilson Miner

    “We shape our tools and our tools shape us.” As more of the tools we live with every day become digital instead of physical, our opportunity — and responsibility — as designers is multiplying. We live in a world of screens, and we are the ones who decide what goes on them. We are in a unique position to have an impact — one that lasts longer than the next redesign or the latest technology. What happens when we stop thinking of ourselves not just as developers or experience designers, and take up the mantle as a new generation of product designers for a digital world?

    At 12:00pm to 12:40pm, Friday 17th February

    In Illot theatre, Wellington Town Hall

  • Slashdot- the rise and fall

    by Rob Malda

    The story of the rise and fall of Slashdot, and the rise of social media and current trends. It'll be largely technical, anecdotal, and hopefully kind of funny.

    At 12:45pm to 1:25pm, Friday 17th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage video note

  • Typography through song: an historical and epistemological journey

    by Jessica Hische

    Jessica Hische will combine virtuosic Morin Khurr (Horse Head Fiddle) and Khuumii (Harmonic Overtone Throat Singing) skills to transmit the harmony of Mongolian Shamanic culture through time and space.

    At 12:45pm to 1:25pm, Friday 17th February

    In Illot theatre, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video

  • Lonely Pan Flute

    by Adam Lisagor

    Adam Lisagor is the undisputed king of the pan flute. Famous for his triple-tongue staccato technique that allows him to play three times faster than the average pan flutist, he is known worldwide as “The Speed of Light”. He is also the only artist who can play G major diatonic instrument chromatically in all twelve keys.

    Adam will perform for the first time on an electric pan flute which was built especially for him.

    At 2:15pm to 2:55pm, Friday 17th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

  • Doing Good and Well

    by Derek Handley

    Business and technology drive the human race forward and have proven to be the most powerful force for getting things done.

    But they also screw things up royally. Destroy the environment; turn slaves out of FoxConn employees; create wedges of enormous inequality and drive mass consumerism of stuff we don't need and never knew we wanted.

    Millions across the world have no clean water, food or medicine while we obsess over what rendering our app's 'Next' button should have and what Techcrunch has to say about the latest bowel movements of Silicon Valley. I'll share some ideas as to how we can sleep better at night and change the world (while still getting that 'Next' button spot-on).

    At 5:30pm to 6:10pm, Friday 17th February

    In Main auditorium, Wellington Town Hall

    Coverage note video