Sessions at Interaction14 on Wednesday 5th February Workshops

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  • An Introduction to Systems for Interaction Designers

    by Matthew Milan

    This workshop is an intensive introduction to the topic and landscape of systems.

    The focus will be split between between a survey of systems perspectives and theories, and hands-on experience with the tools and techniques used to evaluate and model systems. The coverage of subject matter will be biased towards perspectives and tools that are directly relevant and applicable to the daily work of practicing interaction designers.

    The topics covered in the theory and history of systems will include:

    • General Systems Theory
    • Open, Closed and Isolated Systems
    • Feedback Loops
    • Cybernetics
    • Activity Systems
    • Hard Systems
    • Soft Systems/Social Systems
    • Complex Adaptive Systems
    • Meta-Systems/BioMatrix
    • Designing for Systems in Interaction Design

    The tools and techniques covered will include:

    • Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis
    • Basic Systems Inquiry
    • Modeling Systems
    • Monitoring Systems
    • Advanced Systems Inquiry
    • Designing with Systems in Interaction Design

    Where possible, contemporary examples of system types as well as tools and techniques will be used. Audience engagement will be a mix of formal lecture, group dialog and group activity.

    At 9:30am to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Circle of Visual Interpretation Workshop

    by Dave Wood

    It is difficult to know for certain that the experience of one user will be the same as that for other users, and if other users sense the same things or encounter the world in the same way as each other. Yet interaction designers have to find a way of designing new interactions to suit their target audiences. Alan Cooper argues quite rightly that, “if you’re going to do user-centered design you’ve got to understand the user.”
    This half-day workshop will give you, the interaction design professional, direct, hands–on experience of a new low cost methodology you can employ to reveal the meaning of user experiences through interpretation of the user’s experience itself. This emergent methodology will augment your personas within the normal ideation phase of your design process, creating a deeper understanding of what your users actually do, think, feel etc. rather that what they consciously think they know.
    The practical workshop’s activities encourage the application of a method to reveal actual user experience through ‘the eyes of the users’ by applying a technique of hermeneutic-semiosis - which means visual interpretation through semiotics.
    Themes in workshop include:
    * The Essence of Experience;
    * Hermeneutic-Semiosis;
    * The Circle of Interpretation.
    Dave will lead you through a process of revealing user experience through a visual hermeneutic circle of interpretation to reveal what was previously hidden. This creates visual stimuli for interaction designers that reveals the essence of what is really happening with the user, in ways that personas and mental models cannot do. Through this new visual interpretive methodology a fresh perspective that illustrates the core phenomenological essence of an experience can be interpreted from the user’s own points-of-view.
    During this half-day workshop, we will use a very practical method card approach rather than a dry academic approach. The underlying hermeneutic-semiosis theory that (synthesising aspects of Pragmatism, and Martin Heidegger through C.S. Peirce’s semiotics) acts as a framework for the practical exploration. 
    You’ll come away with a clear understanding of the principles behind the methodology, and practical ideas that can inform your future interaction designs in new ways. It will also open up the debate as to how Visual Communication can be utilised more in the design of better interactive user experiences.
    In the workshop you will:
    * Discover how the methodology works through easy-to-use method cards;
    * Participate in structured practical activities from the method cards to help show how you can apply it to your projects;
    * Understand how to reveal more from your user research to achieve a fuller picture of your users, based on their actual points-of-view;
    * Feedback your thoughts from the exercises and help further develop the methodology.
    Activities include:
    * Identifying themes of an experience—training participants to identify invariant themes in an experience from within user research;
    * Revealing essence of experience—applying the principles of the method to reveal hidden user experience;
    * Visually interpreting the experience—using a visual hermeneutic circle to refine the revealed experiential essence.

    At 9:30am to 12:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht


    by Jason Nunes

    Edison famously said, "I failed my way to success." In the interactive world, we've all heard the buzz phrases about failing fast, and how failure--particularly in the form of prototyping--can be a powerful design tool. But what about real failure? We've all experienced projects that never got off the ground, or crashed and burned stunningly. We don't put them in our portfolios. We only talk about them when we've had one drink too many. What can we learn from our embarrassments? And are there really things we can learn by failing, especially in the agency and consulting worlds, where we are hired for our expertise, and infallibility?

    Questions to think about:

    Can there be actual power, and knowledge in failure? What is your biggest failure, and what did you learn from it?

    What are the different ways you can fail? Have you ever had a "successful" project that was a personal failure? Why? What can you learn from it?

    Why are we so afraid of failing? What are the negative consequences of failure? And how can we encourage a positive viewpoint on failure?

    How can we pull victory from the flames of defeat? How do you not panic when you sense yourself failing? How can you use your failure to inform future successes?

    How can we build an acceptance of failure into a design or consulting practice? How can we get away from always having to be right, and move towards creative adaptability?

    At 9:30am to 12:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Game of prototype

    by Maxime Fortelle and Adrien Schwartz

    The UxPA poster "UCD board game" is exposed in many IT and design offices. It's a brilliant tool for spreading UX methods in a fun way. It’s also a good gamification example about complexe concepts and methods. It’s simple to follow the UX process. To extend this concept, the workshop "Game of Prototype" will try to make this poster tangible with prototyping tools thema.
    Like in the Game of the Goose, “Game of Prototype” participants will play to discover the benefits of using prototyping methods. From the definition of user needs to the deliverables, players will identify issues related to prototyping through short serious game sessions. Each session will show a method or a tool connected with the art of prototyping: persona, user research, sketching, usability testing, wireframing, tools, etc.
    So, each serious game will be followed by an exchange time about the issue addressed to collect good practices. For example, they will discover the persona concept around a mimic game where players will have to guess a persona to the others. At the end of this session, we will explain shortly how to make and to use a persona in a project.
    During the game, a parallel session will be organized about apps prototyping "Game of prototype" for different devices. Thus, participants will experiment the methods which have been see through the game.

    At 9:30am to 12:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Gamification Gamestorm

    by Micah Hrehovcsik

    During this two part session, Micah Hrehovcsik will first give a talk about gamification design, in which he explains the term and gives examples of best practices. We will show that current gamification is often limited to one game form (competition), while there are numerous other possibilities.

    This presentation is followed by a brainstorm session and open discussions. Participants work with a case from the field of healthcare, government or education. They will get tips and inspiration on how to 'gamify' these problems in an original way. In the end participants present their ideas to the other groups. The take-away from this session is a broader perspective on gamification and its design.

    At 9:30am to 12:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Hypothesis Writing: Using Hypotheses to Align Design, Business and Technology

    by Joshua Seiden and Jeff Gothelf

    No one admits it but too often, requirements are just guesses. To cover up this uncomfortable fact, software managers do a vast amount to work on requirements: they pre-plan in painstaking detail, outlining every possible scenario, use case, back-end integration point, and business rule. The end result of all this planning? Too often, it’s disappointment, frustration, and vast sums of wasted money.

    Instead of all this guessing, shouldn't we just call requirements what they are--hypotheses--and work as quickly as we can to figure out if we're right it wrong?

    In the last two years, Josh Seiden and Jeff Gothelf have been working with software teams to do exactly this. Working closely together in small, cross-functional groups, these Agile teams use Lean UX methods to take risk out of the software development process by validating requirements in an ongoing way as they are designing and building software. The key technique they use here is the hypothesis.

    This workshop will be a half-day deep dive into using hypotheses to manage your design process. It will cover the following topics:
    * Identifying assumptions, why this is so important, and how to do it.
    * The assumptions canvas—your key tool for managing assumptions—and connecting your work to business strategy.
    * Translating assumptions into hypotheses.
    * How to write good hypotheses for software teams.
    * Testing hypotheses: how do hypotheses, experiments, and MVP’s (minimum viable products) work together
    * Putting it all together in an agile rhythm.

    Using a mix of lecture, hands-on exercises, and discussion, this is a fast-paced, practical workshop. You’ll leave with hands-on experience with a method you can apply immediately in your work.

    At 9:30am to 12:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Interaction Design Beyond the Wireframe

    by Lis Hubert

    Are you an interaction designer looking to move beyond the wireframe? Or maybe you’re a designer or developer who is trying to learn how to get more direction and insight than the simple wireframe provides? Either way this workshop is for you! In it, we will conduct and investigate design thinking that needs to happen outside of the interface to help set project direction, gain team consensus, and ensure project success.

    What You'll Learn
    • Improved and expanded designing thinking skills
    • Applicable knowledge of interaction design beyond the wireframes
    • Hands on, practical workshop

    At 9:30am to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Being a Successful User Centred Product Manager

    by Andrew Mayfield

    This workshop is about building an effective and nimble user centred product team building great products for a global audience. It’s about deciding what a Minimum Viable Product really is and [the hard part:] what to do once you've got one. I'll go behind the scenes at Optimal Workshop to discuss our design and development process, how we handle customer support and how the two are intertwined for the good of our customers.

    We'll discuss the importance of design in every aspect of the work you do and how the subtleties of user interaction and experience can make or break your business.

    We'll pull together concepts from the Lean Startup movement (a/b testing to ensure business success), Agile UX (designing while sprinting), the good things to learn from waterfall projects for internal teams (set big goals and break them down) and to discuss the practical tools that small teams can use to win.

    At 1:30pm to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • C-Speak For Designers: Presenting UX To Deciders

    by Angel Anderson

    UX has hit puberty. Clients and stakeholders are aware of terms like ecosystems, user journeys, and touch-points, but their understanding of exactly what these things are and how to use them for shaping a meaningful strategy is still fuzzy. Business owners now believe that customer experience is one of the best sources for long-term competitive advantages, but they still struggle to foster and achieve great experiences.

    The good news is that clients increasing look to UX designers for answers about how our work can bring their business strategy to life. We are in a unique position to help companies evolve their strategy so that every touch-point becomes an opportunity for a great user experience. The catch is that to be successful, we must be fluent in the C-speak, the language of C-level executives and business directors, so we can help them recognize pain points and take the right steps to improving the user experience for their product, service, or brand.

    There is a more strategic role for designers, but traditional design skills will only get you so far. To get a seat at the table with C-level stakeholders and deciders, you must acquire new communication skills and new know-how. This workshop will cover:
    * C-speak 101 – The language of business strategy
    * What UX can add to the conversation that others can’t
    * 5 capabilities to add to your repertoire
    * Creating visualizations for strategic frameworks
    * Techniques for communicating decision makers

    Designers are not generally taught how to define opportunities in ways that are credible in a business context. By learning to speak the language of C-level executives and senior business managers, we can communicate how all channels and touch-points must work together not just stylistically but with strategic intelligence to create a true and lasting value exchange between businesses and customers.

    At 1:30pm to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Interaction Design and Comics

    by Scott McCloud

    At 1:30pm to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • IxDA Local Leader workshop

    Are you an IxDA Local Leader? Or would you like to lead an IxDA Local Group in your home town? If so, come join us at the annual Local Leaders Workshop. Get together with both seasoned and new Local Leaders to discuss strategies for designing a passionate IxDA community in your area. You will walk away with new event ideas and a fresh perspective.
    The discussion will be structured with a mix of topics presented by a variety of Local Leaders. Also, we will spend part of the time discussing each region's events, successes and challenges.

    At 1:30pm to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

    Coverage sketch note

  • Learn to Drive Your UX Career (A Language for Enabling Career Conversations)

    by Ian Swinson and Dan Donovan

    As UX professionals we spend a ton of time talking about a variety of design languages but relatively little time talking about or defining a language for planning and nurturing our careers.

    Having spent two decades working at a variety of companies I have experience with a variety of managers. While my role was very similar from company to company the managers’ backgrounds were radically different: Some were design experts, others hard core engineers, and a number were MBA’s with excellent leadership skills. Not once did I encounter a manager who could converse equally well about design expertise and provide effective guidance for advancing my career.

    After 17 years working as an individual contributor I made the switch to full-time management. This experience has given me an entirely new perspective on the role of management and the depth of our responsibilities for developing UX careers. The transition of the past few years has been challenging, enlightening and highly educational. Of the many challenges, none were greater than providing consistent, concrete and actionable coaching feedback to my team members. If I was full of energy the discussion was lively, deep and extremely fruitful for the employee. If I was fatigued at the end of the day I would provide the bare essentials. This was deeply frustrating and motivated me to find a way to ensure equally fruitful discussions for everyone.

    Interaction design, user experience, product design - whatever you want to call it - the time has come for a standardized career framework to emerge, be put into practice, and evolved through usage, feedback and open dialogs. As UX practitioners we need to take control of our careers and as managers we need to lay the groundwork for upcoming generations.

    This workshop will focus on a few key assets and concepts:
    1. A career ladder
    2. A career and coaching framework
    3. A tool for assessing both an employee’s skill set and morale

    Managers should leave the workshop with a formal structural understanding of the various dimensions (and sub-dimensions) that constitute a career in UX and how to apply this structure to their workplace. The primary goal is to facilitate conversations between managers and employees and empower the latter.

    Individual contributors should leave the workshop with the same formal understanding of the dimensions related to their careers but with a focus on helping employees both plan their careers and initiate effective conversations with their managers.

    As presenters we will leave the workshop with invaluable feedback from our peers, a broader perspective on the variety of careers and companies in the world, and the chance to iterate our model and re-share it with the IxDA community.

    At 1:30pm to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

  • Sketching through the design process

    by Ray DeLaPena

    Everyone is talking about sketching and how important it is. There are dozens of processes and techniques out there instructing us on how to sketch better. This workshop, however, is not process or technique-specific, but rather an accessible framework for understanding sketching to help communication, understanding, and problem solving.

    I propose that every kind of sketching activity falls into one of three categories, and in this workshop we will cover these three modalities; thinking, talking, and showing.

    For each type of sketching we will cover:
    - Who it helps
    - What it is
    - When it can help
    - Why you don't need to "know how to draw" to use it
    - How to be prepared to use it

    You don’t even need to know how to “draw” to learn and apply the methods we’ll be covering. After attending this session you will be more comfortable with and better prepared to recognize opportunities where sketching can be used to increase communication and understanding with clients, stakeholders, coworkers, as well as all by yourself, as you work through problems and come up with solutions.

    At 1:30pm to 4:30pm, Wednesday 5th February

    In HKU University of the Arts Utrecht

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