• VR and AR in the Triangle

    American Underground (@Raleigh)

    The excitement around Virtual and Augmented Reality has been building for years now, with a steady drip of technological improvements and increasingly available consumer-ready products.

    We’re excited to have two local multidisciplinary experts join us to talk about their experience working with VR and AR in the region.

    1. Predicting the Traffic Jam: What does a world with omnipresent VR/AR look like?

    Mike McMardle is the Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer at Lucid Dream VR. There's a saying that "Good science fiction doesn't predict the car, it predicts the traffic jam." In this talk Mike will share share some insights and predictions into human behavior and attempt to do the possible: predict the future. Using past paradigm shifts as examples and using the commonalities of our behavior as a guiding principle, we’ll get a brief overview of how this technology will probably radically change how we engage with each other and the world.

    2. Making Virtual Reality a Reality – Bringing VR and AR to Triangle Businesses

    Jason Cooper and Jason McGuian are the Chief Digital Officer and the Chief Creative Officer at Horizon Productions, a multidisciplinary production house that has been providing companies in and around the Triangle with a range of customized content for nearly 35 years. The Jasons will join us to talk about the business and marketing end of VR, touching on topics ranging from awareness to networking to career advice.


    We'll meet in American Underground@Raleigh (Momentum's new space) in downtown Raleigh. Moore Square Parking Deck is the closest garage.

    thoughtbot will provide snacks and beverages.

  • Design + Blockchain

    Little Green Software

    By now you’ve heard the hype surrounding cryptocurrencies and blockchain, but not sure how it affects you as a designer. How does blockchain help your users? Maybe you have learned about blockchain and want to get involved, but you’re not sure where to start. What does designing for trust really mean? What is different about designing for apps that use a blockchain?

    This talk will cover the challenges in designing experiences for blockchain applications and how we approach these problems using low-fidelity prototyping, design thinking methodologies, and user research. Sarah will discuss what she and her colleagues have learned—and what you need to know as a designer.

    Sarah Mills
    Sarah is an award-winning designer with experience spanning industries such as scientific publishing, government, journalism, and software. She is currently Product Design Director at ConsenSys, a venture production studio building decentralized applications and various developer and end-user tools for blockchain ecosystems, primarily focused on Ethereum. Previously, she led product design teams and facilitated design thinking for IBM Blockchain. Sarah cares about making the blockchain space more accessible, inclusive, and focused on solving problems for human beings—while making a design practice more efficient and transparent.

    This will not be a comprehensive explanation of blockchain, so if you’re new to blockchain, check out these videos and articles:

  • Happy Hour at Boxcar

    Boxcar Bar + Arcade

    Let’s get together and talk shop over drinks and retro arcade games. We've got a new organizer for you to meet. We'd also love to hear about topics you're interested in.

    Are you interested in speaking at a future event? Let us know, we'll be at Boxcar Bar + Arcade (https://theboxcarbar.com/raleigh/) on Tuesday, October 3rd starting at 6:30pm.

    Bring quarters.

  • Make Informed Decisions: Achieve Goals with Metrics

    Data for a product and business can be ubiquitous — the key is knowing what to look for, and how to use it.

    Michael Peach, the Head of Product Marketing at Pendo, and Greg Hyer, the Marketing Communications Manager at TheeDesign, will share their insights with us on how to establish and use metrics and KPIs — and take action.

    There will be food and drink provided by thoughtbot, and space provided by Pendo.

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    The topics and speakers:

    5 Key Measurements for Product Success – What metrics we use internally at Pendo and why

    As a provider of product analytics, one of the consistent questions we get is how to make sense of the data, and what should product teams look to measure. This session will walk through the key metrics that we use internally to measure the health of our customers and success of our product. We will look at how product teams can make usage data actionable, and ways that they can gather data and calculate metrics whether using our platform or not.

    Michael Peach is the Head of Product Marketing for Pendo (https://www.pendo.io/) where he leads messaging, positioning, and launch activities for Pendo’s product experience platform. Prior to joining Pendo, he was a program director at IBM where he led marketing and demand generation teams for their mobile, application integration and business process management portfolios. He has also held product management and business development roles for several small and early-stage technology companies. He has a bachelor’s degree from Santa Clara University and an MBA from the University of North Carolina.

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    Help Your Client Identify KPIs Based on their Business Goals

    Every business has goals. Businesses that make investments in products and services expect some sort of return. For some, the problem is knowing what to measure to determine if that investment is producing a return.

    Greg Hyer, Marketing Communications Manager at TheeDesign (https://www.theedesign.com/) and Co-host of the Social Selling Podcast by Linking into Sales (http://www.linkingintosales.com/), will be sharing several ways you can help your clients identify KPIs they can measure based on their business goals and objectives. He will focus on three specific business models; retail, SaaS and business services, each of which Greg has direct working experience in.

    By the conclusion, you will have an understanding how to discover the business’s goals and objectives, determine the best key performance indicators, and how to use dashboard tools to bring transparency to the rest of the team.

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    Parking can be found on the street and in the parking garages by the Raleigh Convention Center a few blocks away.

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    Thank you to thoughtbot (https://thoughtbot.com/) for providing us food and Pendo (https://www.pendo.io/) for sharing their space!

    Follow us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/trianglerefresh/) for group and community announcements.

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    We're grateful to have you, and we look forward to seeing you!

  • The Hiring Dance: How the Other Side Thinks

    Location visible to members

    When you're looking for a new career, you want to stand out to employers from the growing crowd.

    As an employer, you want to attract the right talent.

    This is about how the other side thinks — it's a presentation and Q&A session on building a strong company culture, hiring the right team, and on the flipside, getting hired by that dream company.

    This event will be hosted by the forces that are Ellen Gowdy of CRISP Agency and Dana Calder of The Iron Yard. They each offer a rich and distinct viewpoint on culture and hiring — Ellen will bring the employer's perspective, and Dana will bring the candidate's perspective.

    Whether you represent a company looking for the right talent, or you're the talent looking for the right company: This is your night.

    Come prepared with questions related to hiring and getting hired — anything goes!

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    The speakers:

    Dana Calder
    Dana fell in love with North Carolina while studying Sociology at Salem College. Prior to joining The Iron Yard, she spent more than eight years in educational sales and support. Dana loves exploring the Durham food scene with her wife and son.

    Ellen Gowdy
    Ellen's sweet spot lies in helping companies grow from 20 to 100+ people while preserving and enhancing culture. She's a change almanac, and is skilled at cultivating systems that help companies thrive as they grow. As the Growth Manager at CRISP agency in Raleigh, Ellen puts the right people in the right seats, scales CRISP's unique company culture and helps build an iconic brand known throughout the region. Outside the office, she enjoys nature, cooking, documentaries and personal finance (no, really!)

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    Parking can be found at CRISP, and there is plenty of it.

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    Thank you to thoughtbot (https://thoughtbot.com/) for providing us food and CRISP (http://crisp.agency/) for sharing their space!

    Follow us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/trianglerefresh) for group and community announcements.

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    We're grateful to have you, and we look forward to seeing you!

  • The Winter Drinkup — Craft Conversations & Beer

    Location visible to members

    Join us at Crank Arm Brewing for an informal gathering to talk about 2016, the topics you'd like to see at Refresh in 2017, and to get to know the community a little bit better over craft beer — or the drink of your choice.

    Drinks are on us! And in you.

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    Thank you to thoughtbot (https://thoughtbot.com/) for covering the beverages, and to Crank Arm (http://www.crankarmbrewing.com/) for providing the space.

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    We look forward to seeing you (with or without goggles).

  • Women in Tech in the Triangle

    The Iron Yard - Raleigh

    Refresh the Triangle is excited to bring together a panel of women leaders from across our industry to discuss the state of technology from their perspective.

    We’re inspired by this opportunity to hear personal stories and experiences and to discuss today’s challenges.

    As we move forward in shaping Raleigh to be one of the most forward-thinking centers of technology and design, it’s important for us to have these moments to see our industry and communities from every angle.

    We hope you’ll join us!

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    The Panelists:

    Sandi Metz
    Sandi is a teacher, sometime consultant, cyclist, Rubyist, reluctant author, obsessive programmer, recalcitrant blogger and the antidote for ambition. She's a cornerstone of the Triangle's development community, and has been programming for 30+ years.

    Carol Vercellino
    Before co-founding Oak City Labs, Carol was the Director of Engineering at StepLeader Digital, a mobile application platform for local media stations and colleges across the country. Prior to StepLeader, she managed software and systems engineering at Teradata and iContact leading the adoption of agile practices and continuous delivery. Carol started her career as a Systems Engineer and enjoys working with Linux infrastructures deployed to AWS or Google Cloud. She holds an MBA in Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization from NC State and a BS in Business Administration from University of South Carolina - Upstate.

    Outside of Oak City Labs, Carol is an avid runner and enjoys spending time with her husband and daughters, preferably outside.

    Sarah Kahn
    Sarah Kahn is a UX Manager at Intel. She has been designing and building web interfaces since 2008. She likes making wireframes and prototypes on lots and lots of grid paper, and purr programming with her cat, Delia. She wrote the GDI UX curriculum, which you can fork here (https://github.com/snkahn/gdi-ux-basics).

    Susan Tacker
    Susan's professional background is in both technical communication and user experience, and she manages a team of user experience designers for an enterprise software company. A firm believer in the value provided by professional organizations, particularly for people in tech, she founded the Houston chapter of the User Experience Professionals Association in 2013. She's a co-organizer of Ladies That UX - Durham and president of Triangle UXPA. Susan has graduate degrees in both journalism and human factors in information design, and lives in Durham with her husband Chuck and their dog, Tucker T.

    Ashley Ellis
    Ashley is a developer at thoughtbot. She is one of the top contributors to ActiveMerchant and loves helping out in the development community. She's an organizer of Railsbridge Triangle, a UNC graduate and enjoys cycling, backpacking and playing frisbee with her dog.

    Moderated by Valerie Jaffee
    Valerie is the Community Manager at Industrious Raleigh, a coworking space for startups and small businesses in downtown Raleigh. She's passionate about leveling the field in entrepreneurship, making it possible for women, communities of color, and social entrepreneurs to access capital and realize triple-bottom line impact.

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    Parking can be found at the Moore Square Parking Deck (http://www.godowntownraleigh.com/go/moore-square-parking-deck).

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    Thank you to thoughtbot (https://thoughtbot.com) for providing us with food, The Iron Yard – Raleigh (https://www.theironyard.com/locations/raleigh.html) for sharing their space, and MATI (http://www.matienergy.com/) for quenching our thirst with beverages.

  • The Discipline of Quality


    Chad Pytel, co-founder and CEO of thoughtbot (http://thoughtbot.com/), will discuss its origins, how early experiences influenced the direction and culture of the company, and how they have learned to cultivate a consistently high standard of quality in work.

    Chad leads the day-to-day operations of thoughtbot, including human resources, hiring, and growth, and is responsible for overall strategy for the company.

    He has 20 years of experience in software development and services, and has co-authored two books: Rails AntiPatterns (http://www.amazon.com/Rails-AntiPatterns-Refactoring-Addison-Wesley-Professional/dp/0321604814) and Pro ActiveRecord for Ruby (http://www.amazon.com/Pro-ActiveRecord-Ruby-Databases-Rails/dp/1590598474). Chad holds bachelor of science degrees in both Computer Science and Humanities & Arts (Drama/Theatre) from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI)


    Thank you to DZone (https://dzone.com/) for providing us food, and Industrious (http://industriousoffice.com) for sharing their space!

  • Peyton Crump Presents: Field Notes at Fifteen

    Location visible to members

    Fifteen years into his career, Peyton (http://peytoncrump.com/) shares some of his favorite laws, lessons, and tips that help him create, think, collaborate, communicate, and execute more effectively.

    From high-level cognitive and design principles to practical daily tips and tools, this will be a cross-disciplinary mix that spurs on some great dialogue and sharing.

    Peyton was long-time Designer and Design Director at the digital agency Viget, where he collaborated with various teams and clients on projects, brands, and initiatives big and small. He co-founded Refresh the Triangle and Viget’s Durham office in 2007. He’s now exploring the world of in-house product design, brand, and marketing as Director of Web Design at Spoonflower (http://www.spoonflower.com/).

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    Thank you to our sponsors — thoughtbot (https://thoughtbot.com/) and Caktus Group (https://www.caktusgroup.com/).

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    Your name here — please contact us if you would like to present at a future Meetup.

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    We look forward to seeing you.

  • Get Refreshed: Creativity Lightning Talks

    Location visible to members

    We have three fantastic speakers lined up for the first Refresh Meetup of the season. There will be food and drinks at HQ Raleigh with lightning talks by:

    - Karl Sakas, Consultant & Coach, Sakas & Company

    - Josh Rucker, Software Engineer, Interactive Intelligence

    - Sharon Dawson, Internet Marketing Specialist, TheeDesign Studio

    Join us for a refreshing evening of inspiring ideas.

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    Find 500 Hours of Free Time in Five Minutes

    Karl Sakas (http://sakasandcompany.com/about/karl-sakas/), Consultant & Coach, Sakas & Company (http://sakasandcompany.com)

    Tired of being busy all day... yet it feels like you're never getting anything done? Learn the secret that Karl Sakas uses to help marketing and creative agency leaders get more done—including a proven technique that helps people find an extra[masked] hours of free time a year.

    Karl Sakas (@KarlSakas (http://twitter.com/karlsakas)) helps digital marketing agencies grow without the usual growing pains. Karl is the author of The In-Demand Marketing Agency (http://www.amazon.com/dp/1514347822/) and he's advised clients in 13 countries. Get free advice at the Sakas & Company website (http://sakasandcompany.com/digital-marketing-agency-business-advice/).

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    Inspiring Institutional Creativity

    Josh Rucker, Software Engineer, Interactive Intelligence

    Why do web developers and designers love their job? When do they stop? How can we keep them engaged and inspired? It’s about more than just the work.

    Josh Rucker (@ifiamblue (http://twitter.com/ifiamblue))is a software engineer at Interactive Intelligence, a provider of unified communications solutions. He focuses the majority of his time on building interfaces for scalable, cloud-based web applications using web standards and tools like Knockout, Ember, Node.js, Grunt, and Bower, among many others.

    Prior to joining Interactive Intelligence, Josh was the Senior Web Developer for University Communications at NC State, where he focused on creating frameworks to support www.ncsu.edu (http://www.ncsu.edu/), the NC State brand, and colleges and departments throughout the university.

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    Creative Ways to Present Your Message

    Sharon Dawson, Internet Marketing Specialist, TheeDesign Studio

    You've seen dozens of PowerPoint presentations, but how many of them were bad? How many do you remember the message?

    Sharon will share ideas how to break out of the dry rut of the generic PowerPoint presentation to present your ideas to your clients or coworkers in a memorable way.

    Sharon Dawson (@SharonADawson (https://twitter.com/sharonadawson)) works for TheeDesign (http://www.theedesign.com/) optimizing websites for SEO, writing blogs, and managing social media. She regularly gives talks to groups from[masked] people, and has earned the highest level of achievement in the public speaking organization Toastmasters International.

    Her goals in life including making up hashtags and curing the terrible disease that's sweeping our nation: being bored to death by PowerPoint presentations.

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    Your name here — please contact us if you would like to present your lightning talk during this Meetup.

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    Thank you to our sponsors — thoughtbot (https://thoughtbot.com/) and HQ Raleigh (http://hqraleigh.com/).

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    We look forward to seeing you.