Posts tagged “asu”

From Here to There: Design Research Symposium

Recently I was invited to ASU in Tempe, AZ, to participate in a Design Research Symposium called From Here To There, a reference (I think) to moving from questions to answers (or, perhaps, more questions).

I was pleased to be part of such a great lineup of speakers:

  • Dennis Doordan, Editor, Design Issues
  • Laura DeWitt, Research Director, laga Innovation Group
  • Dan Formosa, Smart Design Worldwide
  • Matthew Jordan, Director of Research and Interaction Design, Insight Product Development
  • David Alan Kopec – “DAK”, Associate Professor of Design, Newschool of Architecture and Design
  • Steve Portigal, Principal, Portigal Consulting
  • Meg Portillo, Chair of the Department of Interior Design, University of Florida
  • Altay Sendil, Design Researcher, IDEO
  • Jason Severs, Principal Designer, frog design
  • Susan Winchip, Professor of Interior and Environmental Design, Illinois State University
  • Matt Zabel, Human Factors and Design Research Manager, Brooks Stevens

We heard from people in academia and people in consulting practices, and we learned about culture, education, methodology, a day-in-the-life of a professional design researcher, quantitative approaches, and a lot more.

I gave a plenary address that built on Practicing Noticing Stuff and Telling Stories. The bulk of the talk was different examples of cultural norms and/or design requirements revealed through observations and photographs. Some of those pictures have appeared on this All This ChittahChattah. In a great bit of small-worldness, one of the students in attendance was the very person who had explained (in a previous blog post here) just what was going on in one of my Hong Kong pictures.

Steve talks about poo


I also ran an in-depth workshop on interviewing techniques. In our training work, we’re often using this same material in professional settings where our clients have a little or a lot of experience in using interviewing and observation as a method for gathering insights so it made for a point of contrast to have the discussion with people who are in student mode and who have had very few applied experiences with design research. I’m appreciative of these opportunities to teach a range of people with different skills levels and backgrounds as I think it keeps the material sharp and our approach always fresh.

A smattering of other conference images:
Questions, answers, and dialog

The Incredible Jason Severs


It was a great event, a good group, well organized, and good interactions. There’s a rumor that the talks may be podcast eventually. I’ll update this post if that happens.

Postcards from the road: PHX to PDX

It’s been a busy-yet-fun few days on the road, from giving a plenary presentation and workshop at ASU’s Design Research Symposium (more to come, whenever I get my pictures – Hi, Greg!), to meetings, dinner with colleagues, and helping a client synthesize fieldwork data from China and Russia into product concepts. Here are some images I captured along the way:

Font problems @ Sky Harbor Airport, April, 2008

No carry-on tires, Sky Harbor Airport, April, 2008

Well, Tempe, AZ, April, 2008

Pay Here, Tempe, AZ, April, 2008

Fear God, Tempe, AZ, April, 2008

Disengaged Citrus, Tempe, AZ, April, 2008

Life imitates The Simpsons, Tempe, AZ, April, 2008

Busy license plate, Tempe, AZ, April, 2008

Crepes To Go, Portland, OR, April, 2008

Font Era #1, Portland, OR, April, 2008

Font Era #2, Portland, OR, April, 2008

Dog Paintings, Portland, OR, April, 2008

Sign upon sign, Portland, OR, April, 2008

Lift party, Portland, OR, April, 2008

Where I’ll Be Speaking

I’ll be teaching a one-day class on Design Research Methods on March 1, in Sunnyvale, CA. There’s a couple of spots still available, so if you want to contribute to a sell-out, it’s not too late!

You can see a longer version of my talk about improv and ethnography at the IDSA Southern Conference in Savannah, GA, March 6-8. See a previous talk here.

I’ll also be in Atlanta, en route to Savannah, and would love to meet up with people in that area to chat about the work we do and look for ways we might help you.

I’ll be giving a presentation called The Listener’s Journey at the Computer Market Analysis Group meeting at Intuit in Mountain View, CA, on March 13-14.

I will talk about international market research at the Silicon Valley American Marketing Association Morning Forum on March 18, in Burlingame, CA.

I will be giving a workshop on best practices in analysis and synthesis at the Second Annual eBay Visits Event on March 21, in San Jose, CA.

I will be giving a talk and hosting a workshop at a design research symposium at the College of Design at Arizona State University, April 11-13 in Tempe, AZ. I’ll be spending a day in Phoenix beforehand and would love to meet with people there explore ways we might be able to help your business.

Let me know if you’ll be at any of these events!


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