Failing Fast & Learning Along the Way – Big Design 2013

Jeremy Johnson @ Big Design

Jeremy Johnson @ Big Design

A couple weeks ago I gave a presentation to a crowd at the Big Design Conference around how we can quickly learn from our customers using a variety of different methods. In the past when I’ve worked with a number of large organizations, moving fast has always been an issue – but many organizations today have cracked the code, and despite their size they move quickly to learn and adjust to make better products for their customers. Products that they truly find value in and enjoy.

If you missed Big Design, it’s a great Dallas area conference, you can see the recap of the conference here via seen.co.

Jeremy Johnson @ Big Design

Jeremy Johnson @ Big Design

The title of the presentation comes from the mantras of startups: “Fail Fast”, “Move Fast & Break Things”, “Keep Shipping” – these are all great slogans, but unknown to many – these are really all about learning. It’s about getting things in front of your customers early, and often. Watching – and learning. Finding what ideas were not quite as brilliant as you once thought – and finding this out as fast and cheap as possible.

With my background in User Experience and customer research, I’m always curious with how they fit in this model. Taking from Agile, Lean, and User Centered Design I went over the build-measure-learn process, and how you can start to shape your organization to move fast, without leaving your customers behind.

Here’s the presentation hosted on slideshare:

@philiplikens took some notes during my talk which you can find here: Failing Fast & Learning Along the Way Notes.

During the presentation I asked a series of questions around how often and how close everyone gets to their end customer. Unfortunately not enough, but there was enough discussion at the end to show that everyone wants to learn from their customers in meaningful ways – we just need to find ways to break down these barriers to do so.

It’s neither expensive or slow to learn something from your customers – so start learning today!

So you want your interface to sell.

so-you-want-your-interface-to-sell

Early on as a Designer I had the privilege to work with some big brands, like: Verizon, Mission Foods, Nokia, and Sabre. Most of my projects were rooted in web applications. Which I loved, and was more than happy to work on as a UX Designer. But some designers took other paths, working on e-commerce sites, or perhaps lead generation. What has been hard to find recently is someone who’s done both. I know I didn’t know e-commerce to the degree I needed to when starting at GameStop – but learned quickly – luckily I’ve had some good teachers over the last couple of years.

Now talking about channels, bounce rate, A/B testing, conversion, SEM/SEO in the norm. And as I loved designing applications, I find equal interest in what makes people shop and (hopefully) eventually buy.

I recently gave this short presentation to a group of designers – a 101 on getting your interface to sell:

Designing for Google Glass

During SXSW I was able to attend Timothy Jordan’s talk on designing and developing for Google Glass. I’m somewhere in here – a photo taken directly from Jordan’s Glass:

SXSW Crowd for Google Glass

Two things struck me from the videos that I’ve seen from Google’s promotional videos:

1) The 100% hands off view is not totally accurate, as you’re touching, taping and swiping the side of the Glass often, and 2) the “augmented view” is also not 100% what has been imagined from the movies or other early phone based, or game based augmented reality experiences.

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I’m speaking @ the Dallas Digital Summit tomorrow

Tomorrow I will be speaking at the Dallas Digital Summit in the User Experience & Design track @ 4:10.



I’ll be speaking about Lean UX (and related topics) – dubbed: Fail Fast, Learn Fast, Move Fast: My UX journey to move faster. I’ll post my slides right after the talk (because you know I’ll be editing them until I’m on stage ;-)

The tickets are currently sold out, but if you’re there be sure to say hello! And if you’re not, you can follow along #DDSum12.

Game On! Gamification @ Big Design 2011

Game On Blog Post

I’m a little behind on this, but it’s always interesting to look back. In 2011 I gave a talk to a couple local groups and at the Big Design Conference on Gamification. We were hot off the heals of SXSW, where we had a great many talks, startups, and guests from the gaming world. But after more than a year, it’s still gaining ground, and we’ve yet to see the hockey stick growth in adoption – but I think it’s still coming.
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Sound knowledgeable about moving your iOS app to Android in around 10 minutes

As Android gains ground, iOS may not be enough for some brands. And with limited budgets and development constraints, sometimes you can’t give your app the full “Android Treatment” it should deserve. I’ve put together a mini guide to go over some common ways to get your iOS app over to Android, while keeping it consistent (mostly) with today’s Android patterns.

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Gesture vs. Touch – observations from the Kinect for developers event

This past week I was able to speak to a large room of developers at the Gravity Center, who were all there to learn more about developing for Kinect. Which is really developing for sensors – of course Kinect development is much more exciting than sensor development :-) You could also say it’s designing for NUI – Natural User Interfaces, ways you’d expect to interact with interfaces if we didn’t have things like mice in the way. I was asked to speak, as a Designer (and the only one in the room) on the trends of Kinect interfaces, and give my perspective.
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Gamification 101 @ Refresh Dallas this week


Back in July I gave a talk during Big Design’s Gaming track on… what else, but one of the hottest UX topics around: Gamification. This was kind of a Gamification 101, to get everyone tuned into what’s going on, what people are doing with it, where you can learn more, etc… With over 150 slides of Gamification goodness – you got a good high-level view – and I’m giving the 101 again – with some updated tweaks at this month’s Refresh Dallas.
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