2006-2007 Meetings

Nov 8, 2007 World Usability Day Co-sponsor
Location: University of Washington

Nov 1, 2007 Gerry McGovern on Customer Carewords
Presenter: Gerry McGovern
Location: Bellevue Regional Library (King County Library System)
You're familiar with search engine optimization and how the right search keywords help bring people to your website. However, when people get to the website, a different set of words become important. These are "customer carewords." Choosing the right customer carewords will lead visitors through the site, and to the desired outcome.

Oct 25, 2007 Yes, Virginia, there is a perfect Web page
Presenter: Scott Krug
Location: Adobe, Seattle, WA
Steve Krug, author of Don’t Make Me Think, will explain why he’s become convinced that there actually is a short list of design conventions that make some Web pages inherently better than others—things that very few sites get right, even though they’re not all that hard to do.

June 28, 2007 Observation-Driven Innovation
Presenter: Monty Hammontree, Director of User Experience with the Microsoft Developer Division
Location: Bellevue Community College, Bellevue, WA
From designing for the mobile space to operating systems to entire applications, Hayley Nichols explained the ins-and-outs of icon design and the systematic methodology FILTER uses to create icon sets for Monty Hammontree outlined many of the common perspectives, patterns, principles, and practices of “human-centered innovation.” In addition, he highlighted some of the ways in which “design thinking” is playing a vital role in product conception and development at Microsoft.

May 24, 2007 Institutionalizing Usability within The Boeing Company--A Case Study of Evolutionary Change
Presenter: Jennifer Duncan of Boeing
Location: Filter/Talent offices in Bellevue, WA
From designing for the mobile space to operating systems to entire applications, Hayley Nichols explained the ins-and-outs of icon design and the systematic methodology FILTER uses to create icon sets for high-profile companies and their high-profile products. The presentation highlighted both "Building Systems" and "Best Practices."

April 26, 2007 Icons: Hieroglyphics for the 21st Century
Presenter: Hayley Nichols, Program Manager at FILTER
Location: T-Mobile, Bellevue, WA
Jennifer Duncan discussed how usability practices have been inserted into the process of evaluating vendor applications and updating and designing custom-built software at Boeing. The UX team has developed templates, instructional aids and made best practices available to extend its reach beyond team members.

March 22, 2007 Objects and Actions Analysis to Drive Interaction Design
Presenter: Heidi Adkisson, director of Interaction Design at Blink Interactive
Location: Bellevue Regional Library, Bellevue, WA
Heidi Adkisson described how Objects and Actions analysis can be used to:
  • Understand the system’s breadth of functionality in a compact, "light weight" representation
  • Develop a concise, consistent vocabulary for the system
  • Ensure all system tasks are accounted for in early-stage design work
  • Simplify the user interface by making clear, explicit associations of objects and related actions

  • March 21, 2007 User-Centered Socializing
    Presenter: Heidi Adkisson, director of Interaction Design at Blink Interactive
    Location: Sakson & Taylor offices in Seattle, WA

    February 22, 2007 Keeping Users in the Flow: UI Support for a Multitasking Workforce
    Presenter: Mary Czerwinski, Microsoft
    Location: University of Washington, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 90
    Mary Czerwinski of Microsoft Research discussed her research group's approach to the user-centered design of advanced user interfaces, and described a few of the more recent research projects by way of example. She focused on helping knowledge workers handle interruptions.

    January 25, 2007 Research and Innovation of the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard
    Presenter: Hugh McLoone, Microsoft
    Location: T-Mobile, Bellevue, WA
    Using the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard as a case study, Hugh McLoone discussed creating innovation for an existing product line through future-thinking design research plans while working within the schedule-driven product design process.

    November 30, 2006 Unique opportunities and challenges of mobile PCs
    Presenters: Brian Fling, Connie Missimer, David Schultz, Terry Sullivan
    Location: Adobe, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 95
    Panel discussion on unique opportunities and challenges of mobile PCs, in terms of interface design, interaction design and user testing.

    Brian Fling discussed some of the input/output challenges of mobile UI, and examine how goal-oriented design is becoming more predominate in mobile interfaces

    Connie Missimer focused on results of a year-long ethnography of students using Tablet PCs. She looks at pain points, areas of pleasure, and usage expectations when people get a new mobile PC.

    David Schultz shared "Ten Usability Tips & Tricks for Testing Mobile Applications" — things he wishes he’d known when he first started in the mobile industry.

    Terry Sullivan explored what happens when pen input has to do more than just "copy and paste." He shares lessons and best practices gleaned from tests of handwriting input in a mathematics application.

    Oct 26, 2006 Google Design in Practice: The Challenge of Simplicity
    Presenter: Adam Barker
    Location: Getty Images, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 95
    Adam Barker of Google described how Google brings design, usability and engineering together to create great products.

    Sept. 19, 2006 Usability and Product Development: A Usability Course for Management
    Presenter: Jon Meads
    Location: Mercer Island Community Center, Mercer Island, WA
    Jon Meads of Usability Architects LLC led a one-day tutorial on maximizing investment in usability and delivering better products by integrating usability engineering into the product development process (both standard and Agile). Participants learned how to organize the development process to include the right usability engineering techniques at the right time..

    June 22, 2006 User-centered design of an urban simulator to support land-use decision-making
    Presenter: Alan Borning
    Location: Adobe, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 24
    Alan Borning, UW Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, gave an overview of UrbanSim, an open-source, reusable modeling system developed at the University of Washington to foster informed deliberation on land use and transportation issues. Its aim is to help predict future patterns of urban development and impact under different possible scenarios over periods of 20 or more years. Borning focused on the design of the user interactions around the system, in particular the use of indicators to distill the results of the simulation in useful ways. He also discussed the project’s use of Value Sensitive Design theory and methodology to approach issues such as fairness, transparency, and support for democratic deliberation.

    May 25, 2006 Recommender Systems: User Experience and System Issues
    Presenter: Joseph A. Konstan
    Location: Microsoft, Redmond, WA
    Attendance: 40
    This talk introduced recommender systems and the algorithms and interfaces used to construct them. It then reviewed recent highlights from the 13-year-old GroupLens Research Project, focusing on an online film rating community recommender system. Joseph A. Konstan, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota, also touched on innovations in user interfaces for enhancing user experience, experiments in applying recommender systems to digital libraries, and developments in leveraging the power of on-line communities to construct and maintain artifacts of lasting value. President of ACM SIGCHI, the 4500-member Special Interest Group on Human-Computer Interaction, Konstan also briefed the audience on the benefits of membership.

    April 27, 2006 Quantitative Analysis of Qualitative Data: Turning Categories and Observations
    Presenter: Terry Sullivan
    Location: Adobe, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 48
    HCI professionals frequently face the daunting task of presenting behavioral and categorical data in rigorous and systematic ways. Thankfully, researchers and practitioners in the field of psychometrics have developed of a set of remarkably powerful tools that permit quantitative analysis of qualitative data. Terry Sullivan, founder of the information consulting practice QAQD.com and an expert in the use of psychometric methods in machine learning, gave a high-level introduction to the methods and practices of quantitative psychology and examined their applicability within the broader field of HCI.

    March 23rd, 2006 Market conditions for usability professionals
    Presenters: Donna Wallace, Design Manager for the Developer Tools division at Microsoft, Michael Hinnant, Senior Information Architect at Ascentium Corporation, Kevin Wick, Manager of the Web User Experience team at Premera Blue Cross
    Location: Getty Images, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 100
    A panel of hiring managers reviewed the job market for UI designers, usability testers, information architects, and others who focus on improving the user experience. The panel discussion was jointly sponsored by Puget Sound SIGCHI and the Alliance for Technology and Women.

    Feb. 26th, 2006 Design Process Behind the Xbox 360
    Presenters: Paolo Malabuyo and Ryan Gunn
    Location: Adobe, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 90
    The Xbox 360 UI design efforts and results were discussed by Paolo Malabuyo, who leads interaction and interface design for Xbox 360 and Xbox Live, and Ryan Gunn, who has played a key role designing the Xbox 360 media features.

    Jan. 26th, 2006 Digital Simplicity through Activity-based Computing
    Presenter: James Landay
    Location: Getty Images, Seattle, WA
    Attendance: 65
    Purveyors of ubiquitous computing technologies tend to force customers into a lopsided bargain: "take this complex technology into your personal life and you will now be able to do these new functions: A, B, & C." The Digital Simplicity project instead offers a different value proposition: "take this simple technology into your personal life and we will simplify the high-level, long-lived activities A, B, &, C you are currently doing." James Landay — Laboratory Director of Intel Research Seattle — gave an overview of the technical, design, and applications research his team is carrying out to make Digital Simplicity a reality.

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    Seattle, WA 98111

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