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Showing posts from 2012

User Experience Design is Not a Sprint - It's a Process

One of the biggest problems I see in my design practice is the design "sprint". A sprint is where a designer (like me) will crank out a lot of various designs very quickly. I can do this, I am good at it actually, but it's a bad way to do interface design. Sprints came from the advertising agency world and really has zero place in web product development. I think a lot of people don't understand how to do SCRUM / Agile development and assume that you can "go Agile" with design by having your designer do sprints.

On the left are Olympic sprinters running for gold. They are competing with other sprinters simply to be fastest.  The one and only goal in this competition is speed. Only one person wins. On the right is a tomato plant from my garden bearing 50+ tomatoes and it's still growing, a lot. I think this is a good metaphor for technology start-ups since the tomato follows a growthprocess to bear fruit.

The tomato starts as a seed (the founder's …

Hello My Old Job - User Experience Design Expert Goes Back to Work For YOU

Sorry for the delay in posts over the months. I effed up. Somebody in DC dangled a wad of bills in front of my face, made a lot of false promises, and lured me into a full-time-job. I was really excited to officially be a "Director of User Experience" at an established start-up ... but it didn't work out. I was a "director" in title only and so I had to quit. I really, really did not appreciate this start-up misrepresenting the job to me. And I'm sure the recruiter violated several of LinkedIn's terms of service. Despite the falling out with DC start-up they still moved forward and published my work (which is good, I guess, in a ridiculous kinda way).

But that's all in the past now and I am back at my old job doing rock-star level UX design consulting and loving it. Over the past couple of months I've been able to dive into a wonderful classroom management website. My upcoming projects include a Maryland custom home builder and another start-up …

Goodbye Self Employement, Goodbye Info Overload

For the past 6 years I've been a self employed designer. I've been contracting for tech start-ups and small businesses. Afraid to turn down any work in a recession, I even turned to social media marketing. But then a funny thing happend over the holidays. The clouds parted, the sun shone down, and a sea of bullshit parted. A good friend referred me to a good recruiter for a good job at a good company with smart, friendly people. All the stars were in alignment. I took the offer. 

It dawned on me as soon as I took the offer how much easier my life will get. All of a sudden I don't have to "eat the dogfood" and be on Facebook all of the time anymore. All of a sudden I can cancel about 50 email newsletters I was subscribed to just so I could be "on top of things" from home. I no longer have to care what the tech pundits say (because I'm not selling web design services to anybody anymore). I don't have to use foursquare, I don't need to c…