2014 Mid-Year

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It’s hard to believe we are already half way through the year! We thought we’d share some of the highlights from our events so far this year. Thanks to everyone who made each event a success. Also, a special thanks to our amazing sponsors – we couldn’t do this without you.

Portfolio workshop

In March, Becca Kennedy and Alex Proaps shared some insights about building a UX portfolio for non-visual designers. Ultimately, the goal is to focus on case studies and your problem-solving process instead of final design concepts.

Image of the book Show Your Work and some handouts with information about portfolios

Here are some helpful resources and references from their presentation:

Tony Santos

In April, Tony Santos, UX Lead for Mozilla’s Firefox Marketplace and Apps Ecosystem, joined us all the way from California for a moderated Q&A session and lecture “Opening Up Your Design Process.” Here are some highlights from Twitter:

Tweet: "If you're passionate about user centered design don't do any other kind of design. Bring along clients and managers."

Tweet: "Want a UX job? Have a great portfolio and kick ass and kiss ass with your cover letter."
Tweet: "Designers should know how to code enough to be dangerous." I like this a lot!

National Day of Civic Hacking

We collaborated with Code for Hampton Roads in May for National Day of Civic Hacking: Hampton Roads. National Civic Day of Hacking creates the opportunity for citizens to get involved in serving their community by using technology to create new, innovative applications and platforms. Everyone came together to brainstorm, attend workshops, and work on current projects like this Open Health Inspection App! Paula Jasinski, President of Chesapeake Environmental Communications (CEC), provided an educational and entertaining overview of the latest climate change science and how forecasted changes are likely to impact coastal Virginia. She discussed the Climate Data Initiative and the types of climate data available to draw on to develop new tools. For more information on CEC, please visit: www.ChesapeakeData.com.

Group photo from National Day of Civic Hacking Hampton Roads

Check out our Facebook page for images from the event. You can see photos from around the world on Flickr. Our favorite tweets from the day:

 Kevin Curry on Twitter: Amazing thing happens when user experience professionals organize a hackathon: you get a user experience. Moar UXPA in hacking please

On your mark, data, set, go - paula jasinski kicking off National Day of Civic Hacking

If you’re interested in learning more about civic hacking in Hampton Roads, visit codeforhamptonroads.org and codeforamerica.org. Special thanks to Stanley Zheng for making this such an amazing event.

Whitney Quesenbery

In June, Whitney Quesenbery, independent consultant at WQUsability, author, and accessibility advocate, joined us for a remote talk and Q&A: “Accessibility as Innovation.” These are some of our favorite quotes from the evening, shared via Twitter:

Tweet: 43% of US read at basic and below basic reading levels. 13% are proficient in interpreting and analyzing. Support people's perceptions and reading styles."

Tweet: The things that make mobile first work are the same things that make accessibility first work - Like Luke W says, it forces you to focus."

Tweet: We are passionate about users. We want to fix it all. But pick up the lowest hanging fruit first. Take small steps to get the message across."

Here are some of the resources she shared during her talk:

What’s to come

We have more exciting events planned for the rest of the year. Join us at Belmont House of Smoke in July for our summer social. In August, one of our board members will lead a discussion about web design fundamentals at Griff’s in Olde Towne Portsmouth.

Also stay tuned for details about a Design-a-thon and UX career panel in the fall!

If you are interested in participating in or sponsoring World Usability Day in November (specific date and location are still pending), check out our World Usability Day 2014 page!

~~~

Post by Alex Proaps
(Portfolio photo by Alex Proaps; NDoCH group photo by Lookmai Rattana of Code for Hampton Roads)

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