From Hack to Product Feature - how to leverage R&D at work through hackathons

A11yVR - Accessibility Virtual Reality Group
A11yVR - Accessibility Virtual Reality Group
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Date and Time
Thursday July 16th at 7pm ET / 4pm PT / July 17th 8am JT

About this Presentation:
Whether you are working in a scrappy startup or a mid-size software company, bringing in new XR product feature ideas or outside-the-box concepts is a real challenge.

Just like accessibility features are often deprioritized and pushed to the end of the engineering backlog (far behind tickets for stability/robustness and sales features for product-market fit), venturing outside the product roadmap is not always possible.

As a Product UX design lead, my focus was to build out a scalable design team, a design process, and a UX pipeline to keep the product engine running smoothly.

While my job didn't leave any room for innovation and R&D beyond the existing product roadmap, I used hackathons to make space for my innovative concepts.

Creating open-source projects in hackathons to test the viability of an idea/concept, as well as user-test for accessibility, is a great way for team leaders to empower their employees to grow, take ownership and make better products.

Hackathons are naturally competitive and creative environments that are time capped, exerting positive pressure on the participants to deliver results and win prices.

In my presentation, I will show you one of my accessible XR concepts that I built at the MIT Reality Hack in January 2020 and how it would convert into a new product feature at the SaaS company.

Presenter Bio:
Roland Dubois is the Lead Product UX/UI Designer at Virtual Facility, XR Accessibility at Virtuleap, Mozilla Tech Speaker and creator of GRAVR — a globally recognized avatar for VR on the web. Previously, Roland co-founded the consulting agency and dev shop ByteDept, designing human-centric digital products for some of the world’s most respected brands in a variety of verticals. He is the host of WebXR (A-Frame NYC) workshops/events and creates immersive experiments that make the current VR/AR industry accessible for everyone. He started his design career in the Siemens/BenQ innovations Lab.
A graduate from the University of Applied Sciences Munich, Roland is adjunct faculty at the School of Visual Arts. He is also a member of the W3C Immersive Web CG and XR Access.

Location:
Mozilla Hubs Space
https://hubs.mozilla.com/G6edX79/a11yvr-project/

YouTube Channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqhCc1b6Cq69eg-iYeVKOog

Timeline:
Please NOTE Meetup is not skilled in representing timezones. This meetup is set in Tokyo, Japan so it will display differently than your local time zone. When you RSVP, use the "Add to calendar" link to receive a calendar invite transcribed to your time zone.

This timeline is based on EDT time zone.
7:00 - 7:10
Login/explore/troubleshooting audio and video

7:10 - 7:15
Thomas Logan introduction to A11yVR

7:15 - 7:50
Presentation

7:50 - 8:10
Q&A with attendees

8:10 - 9:00
Breakout sessions in small groups to get to know each other in virtual reality. It is up to you if you want to stay and continue meeting other people in the room.

Accessibility Details:
Mozilla Hubs holds weekly office hours that can be used to practice and gain an understanding of how to interact in Mozilla Hubs.

We will have captions provided by Mirabai Knight of White Coat Captioning and have the real time text translation displayed in Hubs.
We will have video streaming of the event to YouTube via a partnership with the Internet Society Accessibility SIG (a11ySIG).

If you are unable to join via Hubs, we encourage you to watch the stream on YouTube and ask questions. As we begin meeting regularly each month we will capture feedback on ways we can be more accessible and inclusive in virtual reality and start incorporating them into a set of Best Practices.