Archive for the 'conferences' Category

Design and Emotion 2008

Friday, October 24th, 2008

Me at Design and Emotion

I spoke at the Design and Emotion 2008 conference two weeks ago in Hong Kong (thanks to Matt Forrest for the photo!). I spoke about my thesis paper – the relationship between classical music and service design – and had very positive feedback on both the presentation itself and my topic. So, a very successful first conference presentation! For those of you who are interested, my presentation can be downloaded here, and my full thesis paper can be found here (the conference paper was shortened and didn’t include everything I wanted from my full paper).

The conference itself was pretty good, even though I witnessed the same couple of flaws I’ve seen at other conferences. My biggest gripe: if you are presenting at a design conference, please make sure your presentation actually looks decent. No one hates a poorly designed presentation more than designers.

Hong Kong itself was great, even though I really only got a day and a half to fully enjoy it. The last time I was in Hong Kong was in 2000, and my cousins over there have since multiplied! I met a lot of cousins’ kids that weren’t even born when I last went. The food and shopping of course were fantastic. More photos from Hong Kong and the conference can be seen on my Flickr site.

I am now back in San Francisco, in my second month of my job at Nokia Design. So far it’s been pretty good. Different methods and environments of work than I’m used to, but it’s a fun challenge to overcome and I’m learning a lot in the process.

Wordle-d (and the thoughts that ensued)

Saturday, August 2nd, 2008

So, it seems wordle.net has been gaining popularity as I’ve been making my way through my design blogs this past month. I’ll join in on this game!

My blog, wordle-d:

Well, I can’t say I’m surprised. Although the ‘relaxing’ threw me off at first.

My thesis paper, wordle-d:

Okay so fine, I talk about service… a lot. Everywhere. But this is a pretty accurate description of my thesis paper, if you cut it up into words.

On other thesis paper news, I will be speaking at the 6th Design and Emotion Conference this October in Hong Kong. I will be presenting a shortened version of my thesis paper, highlighting the main strengths that classical music has to offer in helping strengthen the field of service design. While the idea of spending 14 hours alone on a plane doesn’t particularly make me jump for joy, I’m really excited at the opportunity to present some more of my theoretical work at a public venue. All of the talks I’ve given so far have really been more practical in nature, and this should be a good mix-up for me. Thank you to the School of Design and Nokia for making this happen.

Anyway, all this visualization of my thoughts and writings has got me thinking. While I hope that I can put my service design knowledge to good use at Nokia, I am really excited to be dabbling in areas that are outside my ‘service design’ zone. I am definitely interested in mobile device concepts and the idea of mobility itself, in sustainability and ethical dilemmas, and in the globalization of products and services. I wish I could write more about these but I don’t know enough about it yet to contribute anything really meaningful. So hopefully as I step out and expand more of my design knowledge, I’ll be able to write more about the connection of service design to these various issues.

What a great field we designers are in today. We seem to like to use all facets of human knoweldge and capabilities: from century old psychology, to new theoretical ideas, to the more practical applications, to the use of kindergarten tools (pipe cleaners, markers, and playdough!), to using space-age innovative mindsets… all this knowledge and open-mindedness inform designs and ideas that have the possibility of affecting millions of experiences people have around the world each day. Oh, and as an added bonus, whatever we make or think of is usually pretty easy on the eyes (and brain) too. Pretty neat.

Conference, Blueprints, and Interviews

Wednesday, February 27th, 2008

I haven’t had too many events to inspire a blog post lately, although laziness may have been a factor in my small hiatus from blogging. But I suppose three major events did happen in the past month that are worth mentioning and filing into my little “design milestones” virtual filing cabinet. One: I attended the first ever Interaction Design conference in Savannah, GA. Two: My blueprinting work at IBM this summer is being published and presented at the DMI Education Conference this April. Three: I completed first round interviews for my future (i.e., a job). A very brief summary below:

1. The IxDA conference

Six of us from CMU took the 10 hour drive down to Savannah, GA (where we met up with two more CMU folks) to attend the first ever Interaction Design conference. It was exciting because for the first time, all those who called themselves Interaction Designers (and those aspiring to be one) were in the same space for a weekend. While there were some good presentations and conversations with fellow Interaction Designers, I left the conference feeling a bit worried about the future of Interaction Design. It still feels like most people consider Interaction Design to be a discipline surrounding software and digital media/devices. Being educated at CMU, I often wonder if this view of Interaction Design is too deeply involved with the past, and not thinking enough towards the future. Or at least not broadening the field enough. I would have liked to see more talks hinting at the importance of service/system/environment design, as well as designing for management and organizations (I was glad to see that Bill Buxton touched on this in his talk). Maybe next year. Although I must say, the food at the conference was amazing, as was the venue!

2. My service blueprint enhancement work: published!

My mentor at IBM, Susan Spraragen has been diligently working on a paper regarding the work we did over the summer with service blueprinting. And good news! Our paper was recently accepted into the DMI Education Conference this April in Paris. I’m so glad to have worked with Susan this past summer… her motivation and drive to bring more design thinking to IBM was very inspiring, and made my job of trying to push design into IBM a little less intimidating.

3. Interviews, interviews, and more interviews

Last week was Confluence, the School of Design’s annual job fair. I had the chance to interview with eight companies: Intuit, Cooper, GE, GM, Sapient, IDEO, SAP and eBay. I was mostly very impressed with the companies. There’s a lot of good design work being done out there, even in companies where you wouldn’t think design thinking plays any sort of role in either their work, or their organization. I have yet to contact more companies as I can’t hold out hope on just the eight I’ve already interviewed with, but I’m hopeful that I’ll find something that I enjoy doing and can contribute my skills to.

I guess that’s my update for now. I can’t believe there’s less than three months before I can officially say I have a Masters degree in Design.

emergence 2007

Sunday, September 9th, 2007

This past weekend I attended Emergence, CMU School of Design’s second annual student-run conference. The theme this year was Exploring the Boundaries of Service Design. Dan Boyarski, Head of our School of Design, discussed the theme by asking how service design relates to disciplines such as systems, strategy, information, infrastructure, information, interaction, and product design. We spent most of the last conference trying to define and introduce service design as a discipline, and this year sought to work at the definition a bit more by looking at different fields.

That being said, here’s a quick glimpse of what I got from the conference. I attended one workshop, nine lectures, and two panel discussions. Here goes nothing.

Read the rest of this entry »

I want to go.

Tuesday, August 7th, 2007

ICSID/IDSA Connecting ’07

The 32nd International DMI Conference

MSI’s Service Innovation by Design

I know there are a lot of other conferences but these three have recently put themselves on my conference radar. Looks like a collection of great speakers and interesting topics. If only I was made of money. Well actually, seeing as how MSI’s conference is only open to specific members, and the DMI conference would put me out over $2K, it looks like the ICSID/IDSA may be a possibility.