This morning at Talent garden Rainmaking I attended two talks by industry professionals. Emma-Catrine Hvid from Nordea, had a wonderfully analogue presentation on “Sketching and ideation” using in handdrawn sketches on a flipchart to guide her talk. The majority of her time was a hands-on exercise “crazy 8” – which I already know and love. It is a great tool for getting fun ideas quickly. In just 8 minutes, the room collectively came up with 300+ ideas. I had a blast and would love to see what others came up with!
Anja Thrane, Client Director and Niels Tybjerg, Head of MarTech at @adviceas held a talk titled: “Answering the what and the why”.
My key take-away was that you should not just stop testing after product launch, but keep going (Like in curling). Focus on evolution rather than revolution. Because users are like lions, they act different in the zoo (in a focus group) from the Savanna (daily life).
One way to do this is through looking at the details of web analytics, and then using qualitative research to interpret the data you find, looking at context, channels used, and other needs.
Update on sketchnotes from this conference. Expect notes by the remaining speakers to be added after some retouching. If you have any wish to see particular speakers, let me know and I will prioritise them. Expect to see at least the following speaker sketchnotes: Sheryl Cababa, Sara Watcher Boettcher, Julia Sommer, Darren Menachemson, Rune Nørager and Gry Hasselbach.
“Thoughts on how to take control of your life ONLINE & who to hold accountable including yourself”.
The talk started on a personal note, about when he first got into the web design industry back in 1997 and compared then to the NOW – with the added dimension of moving from the US to Denmark – giving examples of some services and their “always on” mentality, which rewards being addicted and always having what you crave accessible.
Some services are doing the opposite – like the B&H photo closing their shop AND their online shop on sundays. This makes us think about the responsibility of the service providers themselves. For example just think about the repercussions of file sizes changing – in the early days the use of the Internet had a lot of waiting time. Not anymore, it lurs you to just keep spending time on it and rewards your addiction.
“How people are emotionally involved when interacting with information”.
The talk focused on how we use emotion to process information, and that often these emotions get in the way of us even evaluating information – even when we usually have a strategy for doing it. Sometimes we get stuck on a gut feeling.
“You can have the best content, but if something triggers a negative emotion you loose engagement with users”.
My key takeaway was a more nuanced language I can use to discuss the subject of fake news with – where I can distinguish between the 3 types of fake news: mis information, mis information and mal information.
Read her paper here – Cooke, N. A. (2018). Fake News and Alternative Facts: Information Literacy in a Post-truth Era. American Library Association.
Today I had the pleasure of attending the digital transformation event at the agency Advice A/S. Carla Camilla Hjort took the stage to talk about their work at Space 10, and the art of pushing IKEA forward. Key quotes from this talk is “The only thing constant is Change”, “We strive to see patterns where most see chaos”, and “There is no innovation without a great story”. As always, I am a huge fan of NEON signs, so I was very pleased to find one in their office.
Space10 is one of the places I would gladly give up my nomadic freelancing lifestyle for – they manage to save the world one innovative design challenge at a time – and it looks like they have fun doing it. All their labs sound like incredible fun projects to be a part of.
At the event, Rune Dahlgaard (digital partner @Advice) also did a 30 minute talk on why the future belongs to those brands who dare to be different. Rune’s talk was full of facts about the benefits of making a stand as a brand. His most valuable point in my point of view, is the graph that frames the discussion of how brands make a stand, balancing between each end of the axis, from just standing for something to making a change, and whether the issue used makes sense or not at all.
This week I had the pleasure of attending NextM / CopenXRealities and sketchnote for 8 of the talks. My key take away is that people and experiences are still at the heart of new technology. This event had multiple stages at the same time, so I had to make quick choices where to be. A written summary of the highlights from each of these 8 talks will follow bellow each image.
Sketchnotes from the NextM Main stage
Rich Astley (Not to be confused with Rick Astley) from Finecast did a talk on Addressable TV which lead up to a panel discussion on the subject. They are now able to “hyper Target” which enables really specific adds for each device. Get ready for your ads on tv being as specific as those online… crazy! My key learning from this was that it is a good idea to make ads optional for an extra charge. That way the people can understand the cost of content without ads, noone really misses them when they are gone, but it is necessary for keeping the cost of the content low.
Jonathan Epstein from Sentient Ascend did a talk on evolution, covering the difference between Deep learning and evolutionary algorithm, making a case for Neuro Evolution because it is faster, you spend time on highest value tasks, it frees creativity and you can democratize.
Pascal Finette’s talk dove into giving concrete examples of the exponential growth we have seen, linking it to what we will likely see in the future. Like cancer is likely eradicated in the next 20 years, energy is free by 2040 and in the next 7 years Siri will likely become 128x times better… meaning she will be far smarter than us!
In the talk by Ryan Pulliam from ST (Specular Theory), she introduced 8 case examples of immersive technology for business and brands. Her key point was that you should give people a reason to put on the headset! Don’t just sell the hardware of VR + XR + AR + MR, sell experiences! You don’t make people come to the cinema by doing commercials for the outstanding audio experience. You create movies people want to see and lure people in through movie trailers! These immersive experiences have the unique ability to make you not just hear or see, but do! When you do something that really creates an impact, which is the whole premise behind the ‘Perspective series’ created by Specular Theory.
Peter Sunde Kolmisoppi is co-founder of The Pirate Bay, and his talk took us through some Pirate Bay history detailing his time as an activist trying to win the war of the internet, covering some of their biggest acts of trolling.
His key point is that the internet of today is creating trolls! Real life trolls. We need to realize that the internet and the real world is not separate worlds, but one world! He says that “We lost the war of the internet”, and when asked during Q&A what a young student within tech could do to help… he says there is no hope anymore. Pretty bleak statement. Another question during Q&A was what he would say to this room filled with people who work in advertising?. His answer was: “Quit your day job!”
Sketchnotes from the CopenXRealities Main stage
Andreas Cleve from Nordic.ai and Corti.ai took us beyond Alexa and voice accessed Ai (Artificial intelligence) systems, into making a case for iA (Intelligence Augmentation). Where an Ai is good for answering questions, you at the moment need humans to ask the right questions. He spoke of a case from the healthcare sector, where the emergency call receiver employee was enabled to save lives through having decision support that helps them spot heart attacks.
Alexander S. Lopera from Neurons Inc took us through Neuroscience research on VR. From testing if meeting in VR is less stressful than through video or real life (Answer is yes, for introverts is makes a big difference), to testing peoples brain response to VR porn versus screen porn. That Lollipop in my drawing is not really a lollipop!
The talk by Peder Sandqvist and Filippos Arvanitakis took us through their 9 learnings from creating a lot of successful VR experiences. From keeping it simple and balancing the crazy with the known to being aware of the space around the experience as well, and the participants mindset
My sketchnote process review:
It was dark, very dark, during the talks at both of the stages. That is how most conference-goers prefer it I guess, unless you are taking notes like me. It took a few tries before I found a spot with a little bit of light, where I could also be able to read the text on the screens. I have good eyesight but it has its limits.
Another time I should really choose my itinerary a few days before, and factor in time for breaks and time to hang out in the conference hall.
I should practice my visual library for digital/technology/electricity.
My general review of the conference:
Food trucks, heck yeah! (Made all the better by sitting in the beautiful sunshine).
Really smart to have headphones for everyone at the talks in the open hall area.
Hourly meditation in the basement to balance out the conference buzz, nice!
Loved the NextM theme song and creative showreel of speakers – had to look up the song when I got home!
App for choosing your itinerary and reminding you where you need to be, great!
At Ladies First it was all about digital trends today when the sisters Astrid & Ingrid Haug stopped by Niels Brock for a talk each on the topic. Astrid just wrote a book in Danish which is on my wish list called “The future belongs to the fearless”, and Ingrid is behind the great conference called Design Matters which I hope to attend again in 2018.
Key Insights from Astrid’s talk was a nice overview of where we are currently withing digital trends (from SOME to wearables, robots, Internet of Things, AI, Big data, VR, AR, and thoughts about where we are going next.) We are part of shaping this new world through our Vision! As a thinking exercise you can ask yourself what you would do differently if you had to start your company today. Another thinking exercise is to design your own ultimate competitor. They think globally, have no office and few employees, not production costs and are very aware of their purpose and continually innovate.
Key insights from Ingrid’s talk were the 3 topics of: “Design for change”, “Immersive Worlds & Mixed Reality” and “Be a Rebel”. I hope these are some of the topics they will dive into in this years Design Matters conference.
Learnings from sketchnoting:
There is still room for a few details on especially the last sketchnote, which I will add tomorrow. I realized that I need to do a visual library exercise for different symbols and icons representing electricity, technology and digital, so my visual vocab is more varied. Right now the icons I think first, and use in the heat of the moment overlap too much.
I am currenlty jobhunting for a fulltime position as Designer/UX’er/facilitator and was lucky enough to attend the Meet and Greet at @pentialife yesterday! Amazing Office at Islands Brygge in Copenhagen, a huge candy bar, star wars all over and most importantly: a people first mentality.
Walking around in the office I felt right at home amongst a suit of amor, Star Wars, LEGO and best of all…. a whole arcade room! They even had packman and Mario in there. When the developers have a thinking break from work they often collect LEGO. When you are hired you even get some LEGO! And every year there is a dress up day where everyone comes to work in costume!
They employ UX architechs as well as Juniors. You work as a junior for a year in a sort of trainee position. This means they are not afraid of hiring people right out of college. The company language is Danish, although you may be considered for a job even though you do not speak Danish much.
I attended UX Copenhagen at DGI Byen this year, and did live portraits of all speakers as well as sketchnotes. Videos of the talks from the event can be found here.
The talk by Molly Wattwas about the importance of inclusive design and accessible tech. Her key takeaway was that inclusive design can benefit not only the minority but the majority.
Her talk provides an overview of the different categories within inclusive design (Vision, hearing, motor, cognitive) as well as introducing some of the assistive tech that has been a game changer for so many people. It was one of the most personal and moving talks at the conference, because it included her own personal story of constantly battling misconceptions about Deaf-blindness. After Molly’s talk I was Lucky and got to meet her sweet guidedog Isabella too!
Anne Thyme Nørregaard from Siteimprove spoke about accessibility from a business angle, speaking a language investors understand! She argued for accessibility not only being the ethical choice but the smart choice as well, because it it can bring you increased revenue and a better user experience.
Janne Jul Jensen, Senior UX architect from LEGO, says that you should not invest in tools, but invest in people! Her talk advocates for why you need UX in your company, comparing the UX field to the field of Architects (Would you build your house yourself?) and to cooking (a chef perfectly balances the rules of the field chen creating!).
Laura Kalbag wrote a book called Accessibility for Everyone, and is an advocate of that you should be the change you want to see in the world! She presented 7 ways to how you can be part of this positive change, from being the “advicer” to “questioner” or at least “supporter” of others doing it. During her talk she used the visual metaphor of carrots vs. sticks in order to show examples that the motivation for building accessible products can have two sides to it. Later she used an apple to illustrate the different layers in products, from the seed (your intent), to the core (human rights), the flesh (the content) and finally the peel (the visuals / the delight). One of her key points was that you draw the line when Technology goes from harming yourself to something that might harm other people! And you should not be afraid of talking about this even though it is risky!
Louise Fuglesang from Edenspiekermann makes a case for how work with children can inspire us to design more ethically. She talks of the design principles and rights that came out of a Unicef conference in Helsinki she was part of, and how these rules should perhaps not just apply to just children! What is all products and services considered these principles and rules? Because Kids might also use something that is not designed for them.
The talk by Mark Bowers on the new reality of image manipulation blew me away! Some of these examples I had seen before, but never collected together like this. What we will soon be able to pull off will be a game changer! His key point was that when our brains are able to recognize the images as real, as truth, what happens? When we can generate an image as easily as capturing it no one can trust images anymore at all.
Dramatic music. An Atomic Bomb going off on the big screen. Mike Monteiro has arrived and hands out his booklet of 10 rules of ethics to an intrigued audience. Starting with his reason for not being on twitter anymore (they are cowardly and opportunistic and should ban Trump…) he makes a case for why these “white boys” behind the big cooperation have a responsibility when the release something into the world that impacts so many people. “You need a license to be a doctor or even a dog walker…but not to work with our privacy” he says. His Key point is that You are FREE, help others be FREE. You are lucky. We are ordinary people. Your job is a choice, please to it right. Have a spine and say NO! And follow these 10 rules.
Rolf Molich From Dialog Design did a talk on Ethical Dilemmas in User Experience. His key point was that sometimes it is necessary to say NO and face the consequences. He posed 4 ethical dilemmas for a UX’er to the room that we had to answer through a survey on a phones live, and discussed the results. On the scroll you can see the UXPA code of conduct, which you should follow.
Stine Mosegaard Vilhelmsen from Design-people talked about Design and Innovation with a gender lens, focusing on the female consumers as a business potential. She begins with covering 6 reasons why you should design for women, from the fact that they control almost 80% of the spending worldwide to the fact that womens income is on the rise. Men design for other men, but that should stop because studies show that the traits that control spending decisions differs between men and women! There are no difference in abilities between the genders, but the motivation is different. Don’t just “pink it up” when you market a product to women, understand that they view the product as a whole experience rather than its features. Include women in the testing of products! Did you know a lot of medicine is only tested on men? And a lot of car safety is only tested on male dummies? When Apple released their health app they had forgotten about the menstrual cycle tracking in the first version.
The talk by Tim Daniel Hansen on the topic of Sex robots and ethics (and my discussion with him afterwards about the use of child robots…) will haunt me for a long time to come. During his talk he showed footage of how a sex robot is made – and it is much less like the elegant but scary techy intro of Westworld and more like making human sized Barbies… but somehow because of all the parts dangling around being assembled, it made me think of a slaughterhouse….
In his talk Tim asks the question “Do android get erotic nightmares?” and the answer is yes. If we continue to not take ethical and tech aspects seriously both humans and robots will get nightmares. His reason for asking this question is because first of all we are in a moment in history where singularity might not be far off. Secondly he gets furious when he sees tech titans not taking responsibility. And last but not least because responsible development comes from within!
The talk by Dave Dylan Thomas on designing for cognitive bias was really interesting, and I will have to go through the 100+ different biases myself sometime! Some of the biases he goes through were, “Illusion of control”, “Confirmation bias”, “bandwagon effect” , “choice architecture”, “Recency” and more! His key point was that we should use these mental shortcuts for GOOD! We cannot avoid them even when we are aware of them, so we should design knowing of their existence instead. A good example is to do blind resumes.
The Workshop by Teo Choong Ching from Rakuten Viki (I am a BIG fan of their tv show Dramaworld!) was on using sketchstorming. During his workshop we were introduced to working visually with idea generation and its benefits, and guided through a practical demonstration in groups.
Preely invited my old professor and supervisor from Uni Emilie Møllenbach (now employeed at Mobile Pay) to talk about how she uses Sketching in Mobile pay.
It was a joy to hear her talk, and reminded me how much I miss her lectures. Besides case examples of how she uses sketching in Mobile pay, her talk was about different roles and activites within design VS. the different design perspectives. Her key take away is that is pays off to stay longer in the explorative low fidility phase.
The above is the examples she showed of low fidelity, medium and high from a real case.
Their key learning was that you should make good decisions as you go. Afterwards they told us what they look for in the ideal ux’er, which for them in short, is one who is able to produce as well as design, and has heavy knowledge about both software and hardware.