January
19

Feb 9 meetup: Accessibility & UX

by: Michael Seidel | 2016

What: Accessibility & User Experience: You Can’t Have One Without the Other
When: Tuesday, February 9, 6:30pm
Where: Irish Pub, 2nd floor (124 N Water St)
Cost: FREE!
RSVP: Here (note: you are not required to RSVP to attend. Feel free to just show up!)

grobs

Accessibility and UX go hand in hand. Both are after the same thing – great experiences that your ENTIRE audience can use and enjoy.

During this meetup, Steve Grobschmidt will delve into what accessibility is, dispelling some myths along the way. He’ll also explore how UX methodologies like personas can help you make the most accessible experiences possible.

Steve Grobschmidt has worked in the UX and web design fields for over 17 years. He is currently a User Experience Architect at Johnson Controls, and blogs about accessibility and UX at theaccessibility.com.
 
Categories: meetings | Leave a comment
October
8

Nov 3 meetup: UX happy hour(s)!

by: Michael Seidel | 2015

When: Tuesday, November 3rd, 5pm
Where: Burnhearts (2599 S Logan Ave, in Bay View)
Cost: FREE!
RSPV: Here (note: you are not required to RSVP to attend. Feel free to just show up!)

Join us on Tuesday Nov 3rd for an informal UX happy hour. It’ll be a great chance to meet and talk with your fellow UX and UX-sympathizers while drinking free Riverwest Stein and eating Classic Slice pizza, both graciously provided by our good friends at SafeNet.

We’ll take over the back room at Burnhearts (by the pool table), so that’s where you can find us when you arrive.

The event will start around 5 and last until everyone decides to leave. This is a social event, so the start and end times don’t mean much. Just roll in whenever you finish up with work and look for the congregation of nerds. 

Connecting mentors and mentees

We’d also like to use this meetup as an opportunity to connect potential mentors with potential mentees.  Contact us if you’re either one of these and we’ll put you in touch with others who are interested in this during the happy hour.

Hope to see you there!

Categories: happy hour, meetings, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
September
30

3 phases of user research

by: Michael Seidel | 2015

Our User Research panel discussion last night was great. We had a very engaged audience of 50+ people. There were a ton of questions coming at research from different angles, from the conceptual to the practical.

Luckily for you, I wasn’t on the panel, so you didn’t have to hear me blather on about my approach to research. BUT! That panel and other discussions I’ve had with mkeUX community members lately have sent some research-related topics swirling around my head. And given that I’m one of the organizers of mkeUX, I have the power to blog here so you can read my blatherings about my approach to research.

Sorry to put you in this awkward position, but thank you for getting this far.

The 3 phases
For this post I want to outline the 3 Phase approach that I’ve been focusing my user research approach around for the past few years: Contextual inquiry → Design feedback sessions → Usability testing. I want to explain the what’s and why’s of the different research methodologies and help show how I string them together to create a kind of research continuum. For people who are just getting into research or who are looking for a more comprehensive research toolkit, this breakdown may be helpful. It’s worked pretty well for me so far.


Phase 1
Methodology: Contextual inquiry
What it is: Job shadowing users as they go about their normal daily routines. Observe and record what they say and do, and ask in-context clarifying questions.
Why it’s done: To get a deeper understand of users’ journeys and identify design opportunities.
When it’s done: Early in the ideation phase, before design begins. Contextual inquiry can be used to build personas and archetypes, and to generally help project teams and stakeholders get a common, nuanced understanding of who they’re creating a product for.
Other names: Ethnographic research, job shadowing

Phase 2
Methodology: Design feedback session
What it is: Sharing early stage iterative product or feature designs with users. (Early stage can mean sketches, wireframes, or rough prototypes.) Walk users through the concepts and ask probing questions.
Why it’s done: To poke holes in the design so it can be reworked by the design team and then presented again for another round of user feedback. It helps vet design approaches before too much time or money is invested in potentially unusable designs.
When it’s done: As often as possible throughout the design process. In an Agile environment, this would mean showing concepts to several users per sprint.
Other names: Cognitive walkthrough

Phase 3
Methodology: Usability testing
What it is: Watching users as they interact hands-on with a living, working product. Create realistic scenarios and tasks to get users to engage with the product. Ask open-ended, contextual questions and watch for emotional/physical responses to their experiences.
Why it’s done: To discover problems in a product as a user interacts directly with it, and to help uncover organic, user-centric resolutions to those problems.
When it’s done: For a new product, usability testing is the final, critical research step before launching a new product (after going through the other research phases listed above). For an existing product, usability testing helps identify and prioritize areas of improvement before the embarking a redesign.
Other names: Usability study


Making it even better
My goal in writing these is to have clearly-worded descriptions of these methodologies that can be understood by a general audience (non-techy, non-UXy, non-designy). 

A few questions for you:

  • How do you explain these steps to the people you work with and for?
  • How can we demystify the stages of user research in order to get people more vested in investing in it?
  • What do you differently?

Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment
September
11

Deconstructing/reconstructing UX slides

by: Michael Seidel | 2015

On Aug 18, 2015, mkeUX founders Mike Kornacki and Michael Seidel presented their talk, Deconstructing/Reconstructing UX. The presentation was an attempt to bring clarity to the perplexing world of UX job postings, and also to help UX practitioners gain confidence in their selling their skills/ability/knowledge when applying for UX jobs.

We’re posting the slides from the talk below. If you have any questions, please feel free to let us know. We’re eager to give this talk more often, so if you’d be interested in hiring us to give it live, reach out to us for that as well.

Categories: meetings | Leave a comment
September
10

Sept 29 meetup: User Research Panel

by: Michael Seidel | 2015

When: Tuesday, September 29, 6:30pm
Where: Irish Pub, 2nd floor (124 N Water St)
Cost: FREE!
RSVP: Here (note: you are not required to RSVP to attend. Feel free to just show up!)

User Research. It’s important. Really important it. Without involving actual users in a UX design process, the “U” part of the equation gets chopped out and all that’s left is the “X” part (eXperiences). Whether those are the right or wrong “Xes” is an unknown. Doing timely, iterative user research can help alleviate these unknowns. It helps get concepts into the wild before they get too fully baked and too costly to re-work.

In mkeUX’s 5 year history, research is the topic that seems to create the most hub-bub. We’ve had speakers talk about research, but there always seems to be a thirst for more information.

To help quench this thirst, we’ve decided to organize a panel of 4 of Milwaukee’s preeminent User Researchers: Kim Baker, John Dugan, Deb Sova, and Rob Sova. Each will provide their unique perspective on how research happens in academia, consulting organizations, and within in-house UX teams.

The panel will be moderated by Milwaukee’s very own Steve Grobschmidt, mastermind behind The Art of Web Accessibility.

Types of topics that may be discussed:

  • User research methodologies (contextual inquiry, cognitive walkthroughs, usability testing)
  • How to recruit users
  • How to get stakeholders to invest in research
  • What fidelity of designs can/should be tested
  • Testing horror stories
  • Research slam dunks

Like all mkeUX meetings, we’d primarily like this to be an open dialog, so please feel free to come to the meetup prepared with any questions you have about user research.

Speaker bios:
Kimberly Baker teaches undergraduate business writing, technical writing, and usability, and MBA classes in critical and analytical thinking at UW Milwaukee where she also co-manages a Usability Testing Lab. Baker has a decade of  experience in marketing communications, and she earned a BA in advertising from Marquette University, an MA in English specializing in Professional Writing from UWM and she is currently a PhD candidate.

John Dugan has been in the field of usability and user experience design for over 20 years. His psychology doctoral gave him a strong background in HCI, measurement and statistics — three areas of inquiry he is passionate about. After leaving academia, he’s worked for a host of different companies across a swath of industries ranging for large IT consulting firms, globally recognized Internet companies, banks, and retailers.

Deborah Sova has been around the UX usability block a few times. Having spent nearly 20 years observing hundreds of people interacting with technology, she continues to enjoy providing user research insights to design teams for improving the user experience. Deborah was mentored into the field, and she enthusiastically mentors others into the field. You probably know one of her favorite proteges.

Ron Sova started out as an engineer, worked as a developer, attended MIAD, and after attending a usability presentation, became a user-centered designer. Continuing his focus on the user, Ron enjoys reading about the human brain and applies what he learns to UX design and user research. Ron loves sailing off into the sunset with his wife, Deborah.

Steve Grobschmidt has been a designer and user experience practitioner for over 17 years. He is currently a UX architect at Johnson Controls. He writes about UX and accessibility at his blog, The Art of Web Accessibility.

Categories: meetings | Leave a comment
August
3

August 18 meetup: Deconstructing/Reconstructing UX

by: Michael Seidel | 2015

When: Tuesday, August 18, 6:30pm
Where: Irish Pub, 2nd floor (124 N Water St)
Cost: FREE!
RSVP: Here (note: you are not required to RSVP to attend. Feel free to just show up!)

Back in May 2015, mkeUX founders Michael Seidel and Mike Kornacki presented a talk called Reconstructing/Deconstructing UX at C2. In order to get extra life out of the talk, we’ve decided to present it again to our mkeUX friends.

Here is C2’s description of the talk, which is good and still holds true:

Using the increasingly complex job descriptions written to recruit User Experience (UX) practitioners, this seminar promises to clarify expectations of the UX role and tools for better articulating a job posting, and ultimately secure a better fit between candidates and those doing the hiring.

Our speakers, two of Milwaukee’s most vocal UX advocates, live this daily. Mike Kornacki, User Experience Architect at Johnson Controls and Michael Seidel, User Research Lead/Information Architect, Johnson Controls, offer their entertaining yet enlightening insight into the rapidly evolving field and share how they’ve stayed abreast to hire the best.

We hope to see you there!

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment
May
21

$5 seminar event 5/29

by: Michael Seidel | 2015

On 5/29, mkeUX co-founders Mike Kornacki and Michael Seidel will be presenting a talk called Deconstructing / Reconstructing UX at C2.

Here’s a description of the event:

Using the increasingly complex job descriptions written to recruit User Experience (UX) practitioners, this seminar promises to clarify expectations of the UX role and tools for better articulating a job posting, and ultimately secure a better fit between candidates and those doing the hiring.

 

Our speakers, two of Milwaukee’s most vocal UX advocates, live this daily. Mike Kornacki, User Experience Architect at Johnson Controls and Michael Seidel, User Research Lead, Johnson Controls, offer their entertaining yet enlightening insight into the rapidly evolving field and share how they’ve stayed abreast to hire the best.

 

This seminar will:

 

• Help new and aspiring UX practitioners to interpret UX job postings.
• Provide context for hiring managers to better understand UX practitioners and their varied skill sets.

DURATION
150 minutes.

OUTLINE
2:00 – 2:30: Registration and Networking
2:30 – 3:30: Deconstructing UX
3:30 – 3:45: Snack Break
3:45 – 4:45: Reconstructing UX
4:45 – 5:00: Q & A

For more information or to register, please visit C2’s site.

Hope to see you there!

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment
January
11

Feb 16 meetup: How Developers & UX can work together better

by: Michael Seidel | 2015

When: Monday, February 16, 6:30pm
Where: Irish Pub, 2nd floor (124 N Water St)
Cost: FREE!
RSVP: Here (note: you are not required to RSVP to attend. Feel free to just show up!)

Ashley Dzick will be our Feb speaker.

Ashley leads UX at Okanjo, a local startup focusing on eCommerce for media. Prior to Okanjo, she worked at Direct Supply as a developer and then as a UX Designer.

In her talk, she’ll give practical advice about how to build understanding between the development and UX teams. Several developers will accompany her to answer questions from their point of view after the presentation.

Categories: meetings | Leave a comment
November
14

2014 UX holiday party

by: Michael Seidel | 2014

What: UX Holiday Party!
When: Tuesday, Dec 16, 6:00pm
Where: Burnhearts  (2599 S Logan Ave, Bay View)
RSVP: Here (note: you are not required to RSVP to attend. Feel free to just show up!)

mkeUX and Milwaukee UX Book Club are teaming up to throw the biggest and best (and only!) UX-centric holiday party in our fair city.

We’ll have an amazing selection of raffle prizes that have been graciously donated to us:

This is purely a social event. No formal presentation or topic. It’s a great opportunity to share conversation, merriment, and holiday cheer with your fellow UXers! Laughlin Constable is kindly covering part of the bar tab, so plan to arrive early and have a drink on them. C2 will be providing Transfer Pizza and bringing a bunch of Adobe goodies!

We look forward to seeing you there. And really, super looking forward to all the exciting things we have planned for 2015.

 

ow_logo

Logo:logotype

aba-logo

balsamiq_logo

Unknown

fxs1wyk8dw07zs5djlul

300x300

C2 Graphics Productivity Solutions

 

Categories: Holiday Party, meetings | Tags: | Leave a comment
September
26

Oct 7 meetup: Creating Immersive Experiences

by: Michael Seidel | 2014

When: Tuesday, Oct 7, 6:30pm
Where: Irish Pub, 2nd floor (124 N Water St)
Cost: FREE!
RSVP: Here (note: you are not required to RSVP to attend. Feel free to just show up!)

Stephanie Sansoucie will be our October speaker.

Description of her talk: In the future, emerging technology will infuse data into the fabric of our world resulting in immersive, contextually relevant experiences. To generate these immersive experiences, we will need to uncover customer needs beyond those high-level key moments of truth across the journey. We need to expose the micro-moments that matter. Just as organizations invest in experience evolution, so too must they evolve their business model based on learnings.

Stephanie leads the experience strategy and planning practice at Kohl’s Corporation. She brings deep omnichannel expertise focusing on user experience, customer experience, e-commerce, service design, organizational transformation and digital strategy.

 

Categories: meetings | Leave a comment

← Older posts