6:00 - 6:30pm - User Experience -- LIVE! by Abe Crystal
6:30 - 6:50pm - Open networking
6:50 - 7:00pm - Announcements
7:00 - 8:00pm - Agile Jazz in the Post-Industrial Workplace by Michael Pelz-Sherman
8:00 - 8:15pm - Q&A, Open networking (hard stop at 8:15pm)
User Experience -- LIVE!
How do you design software that people actually enjoy using? Software that contributes to their effectiveness, instead of getting in their way? The key is to gather feedback from your customers, and incorporate that feedback into the design and functionality of your product. Sounds obvious, right? But in discussions with developers, business analysts, and other professionals, I've uncovered a number of common beliefs about how to collect feedback from users -- beliefs that are strangely at odds with the practices of user experience professionals! In this presentation, I'll conduct a live demo of a user interview and usability test on a real website. You'll be able to see how these user-centered design techniques are practical and effective methods for improving your product. And we'll discuss how you can adopt a user-centered perspective in your own work.
Abe Crystal, Ph.D., is a principal at MoreBetterLabs [http://morebetterlabs.com], a small but feisty company dedicated to creating a great user experiences through research and design. MoreBetterLabs is currently developing its first product, ruzuku [http://ruzuku.com/]. Ruzuku helps passionate experts (such as authors, speakers, and coaches) create premium online courses and learning communities. In addition, MoreBetterLabs works with clients (such as Lulu.com, Phonebooth.com,ChannelAdvisor.com, Princeton University, and Duke University's Fuqua School of Business), to improve their user experience. We’ve designed mobile apps, online communities, digital libraries, and ecommerce sites. Previously, Abe earned his doctorate in Information Science from UNC-Chapel Hill and worked on the user experience team in IBM’s Rational Software division, where he conducted user research and conceptual design for requirements definition and prototyping software. He co-founded the Triangle Usability Professionals Association, and served as Vice President in 2006, President in 2007, and Chair of the Advisory Council in 2008 and 2009.
Agile Jazz in the Post-Industrial Workplace
will deliver a presentation exploring connections between Jazz Improvisation and post-industrial organizational structure as chiefly exemplified by Agile software development (ASD). It's fairly easy to transform the Agile Manifesto into a statement reflecting the core values of the Jazz and Free improvisation community:
I will examine the common values and systems of organization underlying both communities in order to gain insight into ASD principles through the traditions of Jazz performance practice. I'll also look critically at the metaphor of Jazz Improvisation for post-industrial teams, since the ways in which this metaphor both fails and succeeds are equally interesting.
- Individuals and interactions over processes and toolscomposers and conductors
- Working software great performances over comprehensive documentation accurate reproduction of notated scores
- Customer collaboration audience participation and surprise over contract negotiation predetermined expectations
- Responding to change over following a plan
Michael Pelz-Sherman, PhD has been performing professionally on piano, keyboards, and percussion since 1980, and working full time as a software engineer since 1994.His compositions have been commissioned and performed at the Crested Butte Music Festival, and he is an active member of the International Society of Improvised Music. He holds a BA in Composition from Indiana University, an MA in Computer Music and a PhD in Musicology from UC San Diego.
Michael currently resides in Cary, North Carolina with his wife Dori and their three children, where he performs regularly with his jazz trio MPS Trio, the Quintessence Jazz Orchestra, and blues band A Fifth of Blues. He is employed as a Senior Software Engineer at iContact Corporation in Morrissville.
For more information:
phone:[masked] (h) /[masked] (m)