So I built a bot…

This was originally posted on Medium, but I’ve added some new stuff at the end.

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My job at Mercedes-Benz is intentionally mysterious. But I can say that it helped inspire me to investigate the weird world of chat bots. To help me get started, I asked my friend Sandi MacPherson about how she made her bot. Based on her experience, I followed suit and tried making one myself. It has not even been 24 hours yet, and it’s been quite interesting so far… Continue reading “So I built a bot…”

So I built a bot…

Overcoming Negativity

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A while back we talked about designers and negativity on the podcast. I hope you listened to it because it’s an important topic that can affect many of us in creative fields. Being constantly told ‘No’ or constantly taking criticism is difficult to bear sometimes, and it can sap a lot of your positivity.

Today, I want to talk about the other side of it. How do you deal with someone else in the workplace who seems inextricably trapped in their own negative perspective?  Continue reading “Overcoming Negativity”

Overcoming Negativity

Designing in Public

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In conjunction with a previous post on “Designer Diplomacy”, I wanted to jot down a few words on the importance of working in public. I don’t mean setting up your workstation downtown in Union Square, though that might be kind of a cool way to work! No, instead I think designers should also find ways to make what they do more public in the companies and organizations we all work in. Continue reading “Designing in Public”

Designing in Public

Designer Diplomacy

So if you have been a follower of mine on Twitter, perhaps you know that I recently came back from a (business) trip to Germany. I wrote some other thoughts about my trip earlier, but now I want to talk about something more specific to design. When I came back to the office, I made a remark to a coworker about how I felt like some kind of a ‘design diplomat’, in the sense of having to negotiate design stuff with our colleagues.

I made the remark in jest, but in thinking more about it, the idea of a design diplomat actually makes a lot of sense! Continue reading “Designer Diplomacy”

Designer Diplomacy

The Gratitude of Seeing the Forest

From the Portola Redwoods State Park

 

This is something I wrote while I had some time to think and reflect. Obviously, I’m not currently sitting on a plane… 

I never imagined that I would be here in this moment. Years ago, I was frustrated and fed up. Everyone around me seemed to be doing so well, joining cool companies or doing interesting work. I wanted a piece of it but it always seemed just out of reach. I was ready to go do something else. Drop design entirely and be something else, anything but me. Continue reading “The Gratitude of Seeing the Forest”

The Gratitude of Seeing the Forest

Machine Learning and Data Visualization

I wrote this tweet based on a conversation I had where I tried to explain why machine learning was the future of analytics products and data visualization, and that analytics services that do not begin to solve the machine learning problem today will go the way of the dodo tomorrow. In general, I think the tweet storm that erupted afterwards was well received, but I thought it would be worth a few moments to expand on this topic a bit more. Continue reading “Machine Learning and Data Visualization”

Machine Learning and Data Visualization

The Emotional Side of Design

I think that because this is really much more of a task-based application than other parts of the system, that it makes sense for the UI to be reconfigurable.
I said something to that effect in a recent meeting. It was in regards to how we could create a dynamic UI layout structure to allow for a more flexible presentation of information that is driven by user intent instead of just designing static screens. You see, when designing a UI, the most common thing to try to do is lock things down in-place, so that text and images always display in a consistent manner. But what the hell does that even mean?

Continue reading “The Emotional Side of Design”

The Emotional Side of Design