UX Conference 2016 Washington DC

UX Conference 2016 Washington DC

This year I opted to go to UX Conference held by Nielsen Norman Group at Hotel Palomar in Washington, DC. Four full days of workshops dedicated solely to user experience. For most people that may sound pretty overwhelming, but for my team member and I, it was like going to Disney Land.

The first day’s topic was Effective Ideation Techniques for UX Design. This course covered the ideation stage in the UX design process, as well as tips for improving the creative process on your team. Granted, it was all material that we already knew and practiced at work, but it was good to refresh on some of the key UX fundamentals.

Visual Design for Mobile and Tablet was a two day course. These courses probably weren’t suited for anyone with experience. We haven’t designed a non-responsive site in almost five years. So, we already appreciated most of the material covered in this particular workshop. However, we did still learn some new tricks of creating signifiers and affordances, such as encouraging scrolling and avoiding the illusion of completeness. The examples and explanations of designing for touch and physical constraints and why certain designs only looked great but weren’t great for functionality were very informative.

I was most excited about my last day, Designing for Young Adult Users (Ages 18-25). Millennials are the most powerful group of Americans driving the current and future directions of the housing market for both rentals and purchases. So I was happy to learn the right amount of information to create web content that will appeal to everyone without losing Millennials. I also enjoyed watching findings and video clips on how young adults saw the web and consumed information.

While some courses were meant for people who were new to UX practices throughout the four days, there were few new takeaways and insights that allowed us to continue to grow in each of our respective UX-related fields. And it was a great opportunity to mingle with other like-minded UX professionals from other companies (both agency and corporate) and shared experiences. And did I mention spring time is beautiful in Washington, DC?