An Event Apart Conference Recap

       An Event Apart is a series of three-day-long UX Conferences held throughout the US in the following locations: Washington DC, Seattle, Boston, Minneapolis, San Francisco, and Orlando. An Event Apart offers attendees three full days of "design, code and content"- three days worth of opportunity to learn, connect, and explore. An Event Apart (AEA) offer presentations and panels from industry leaders, thinkers and innovators, focusing on a range of topic today and tomorrow.

Below is a compilation of some of the most relevant points from some sessions I was able to attend. More information and resources can be found here.

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The UX of Autonomous Vehicles

       The autonomous vehicle is more than just a blurred dream that is still off in the distant future; it’s already happening. Recently, the first self-driving taxi service has been launched in Singapore. It is predicted that it’s only a matter of a couple of years before fully automated driving vehicles will be available for purchase on the consumer’s market (Tesla is already taking incremental steps to make semi-autonomous driving vehicles available to the public). However, only a few companies like Google and Volvo have been testing fully automated driving cars on public roads. 

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Great Expectations (Writing a Great SOW)

      The best way to ensure a successful partnership with a consultancy is to have a solid shared understanding of what the goals of the project are, what work will be done, how it will be done, and when it will be done. The Statement of Work (SOW) governing project work is the foundation for a successful outcome. This article explores how to take a high-level SOW from an accepted proposal and turn it into a robust and effective contract.

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UX Research vs. Market Research

September, 11 2019 | Usability Testing, User Experience

      While the field of UXR has existed for a while now, there still seems to be some confusion surrounding what exactly sets it apart from other forms of research. It can be difficult to differentiate it from other types of research that, like UX research (user experience research), measure and evaluate user needs, behaviors, and preferences. One form of research that often gets confused for being UX research is market research. While they are similar, they are very different in their approach, goals, analysis, and implementation. It is also about the kinds of questions you are asking, and the kinds of answers you are hoping to get by conducting your research.

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Participant Recruitment: What Not to Do


In collaboration with Jasmin Joseph.

         Recruitment, whether it be internal or external, is a necessary part of the research process. Part of being able to carry out an effective UX research study is being able to recruit participants who are right for the study, as well as making sure to recruit enough of them. There are several articles (including our own) that provide various different tips and tricks in order to try to help the recruitment process run more smoothly and efficiently. But what about what not to do when trying to recruit participants?

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RPA + UX Part 2: Utilizing UX Design Principles

          Last week, we discussed the importance of applying UX research and principles to the design process of RPA’s. To quickly recap, RPA’s are the use of “software robot”, or other specialized computer programs that can carry out various different kinds of repeatable processes that previously required humans to do. Many believe that the implementation of software robotics will do away with the need to include UX research or processes. However, as discussed last week, applying UX research and design processes are more critical than ever in order to prevent a world takeover at the hands of the robots. But what exactly does this application look like?

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Blockchain Technology and UX Principles

       More and more the world of banking and investing is moving into the online and technological world. Terms like “cryptocurrency” and “bitcoin” have steadily been gaining popularity as user’s are finding ways to handle their finances in a way that matches today’s fast-paced, digital world.  In relation to online financial going ons, another term that is gaining a lot of recent attention is “blockchain”. Blockchain is not a new term, but it is generating increasing buzz since they will have a massive impact on the future of online banking, investing, digital identity, and more. 

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Engaging Stakeholders in UX Research

March, 27 2019 | User Experience, Industries, Markets

      In collaboration with Priscilla Lim.

      User experience research and design is a hugely collaborative process; it involves a research team, a design team, project leads, clients and more. A large part of this collaborative effort lies in being able to get stakeholders to engage in the UX process. Stakeholder engagement is something that should be sought after as soon as stakeholders have been identified in order to ensure that they are engaged in the project every step of the way. They can provide rich insights and context about a project or product that equips UX teams with the necessary background they need to get started. Stakeholder engagement is something that should be seen as a key part of the UX process, rather than an afterthought. For this article, we’ll focus on engaging stakeholders in research. So, what are some of the ways to engage stakeholders in user experience research projects?

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Gestures Over Buttons

March, 06 2019 | User Experience, User Interface

      As our technological devices keep changing, we see that physical buttons are being replaced with smooth touch screens that instead invite users to tap, swipe, drag and more. Users are able to navigate and control their interface without having to rely on pushing physical buttons. Nowadays, as users, we are more and more interacting with devices by using gestures as opposed to pushing any kind of button. But, does that mean physical buttons are disappearing? And is this a good or bad change for users?

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Designing for Millennials vs. Baby Boomers

      As UX Researchers and Designers, we work hard to have empathy and understand all different kinds of user groups. By understanding differences between groups, we are able to design technology that caters to user’s wants and needs. Two interesting groups to consider when designing products are Millennials and Baby Boomers because of the way they use, view, and evaluate technology is very different and is crucial when designing a product.

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The Power of User Culture Immersion

       Let’s say you’ve created a new digital tool that allows users to find and review gluten-free restaurants and brands in one place. So far, you’ve identified your target audience; gluten-free individuals. That’s a great start! Now, what do you know about how these gluten free individuals live their lives? What makes them tick? How do they make food purchasing decisions? How would you go about finding that information?

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The UX of Running Apps

      Many of us at KLI are trying different ways of staying healthy: some of us do yoga, Crossfit, hiking- one of us is even on a rugby team. Swimming and running are my exercises of choice, and I usually choose to go for a run. In my time preparing for half marathons and 5ks, I have tried several apps to use while running. Recently I learned that one of my colleagues is also a runner, so we started talking about the different apps that we use or have tried in the past. We would continue to point out what worked really well and what didn’t which made me wonder what actually makes a running app great for runners?

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