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Reading List: Fall 2015

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Various books and articles are keeping me busy with useful ideas and perspectives this Fall, such as the following: • Articles on Product Management: I must admit I’ve had some rather poor experiences with Product Managers lately, so I’ve been digging deep into what it means to be leading the product function of an organization. What are their goals, drivers, criteria for success? Indeed, these...

Designing with/for “people”

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It’s a truism to say that designers in the broader UX practice must have well-developed “soft skills” to be effective in the field. I gotta say, that trite phrase irks me, if only because it implies something less-than-substantial, almost an afterthought of ephemeral squishiness to tack onto the “hard skills” of… exporting precisely cut Retina-optimized graphics? Hmm. Dubious. Whether slicing...

Post-sabbatical reboot, part 2

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After almost 15 years of working in Silicon Valley as a designer in a variety of fixed, dedicated roles internally at large corps and start-ups (with some agency & freelancing, as well), I am now taking a slightly different tack to “delivering design value” to the industry and field at-large. How so? My focus is now a self-directed “virtuous cycle” of consulting, speaking, and teaching...

Post-sabbatical reboot, part 1

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Well, it’s hard to believe, but it has now been officially two months since I last set foot in an office environment as a regular daily practice, i.e. “my day job”. Whoa! What’s happened since then?  After departing Peel, a consumer startup trying to improve the “universal remote problem” via smartphone apps, I set upon a personal sabbatical of sorts, with nothing lined up. Crazy...

Starting up for design success…

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As I look back across the nearly 15 years of design gigs that formed the basis of my career path, I noticed an interesting commonality that marks how I actually begin each gig, whether full-time, agency, or contract. It consists of two somewhat interrelated notions that I take to each new job on Day One, as described below: a) I’m already fired: Yes, let’s start on a boldly dramatic note ;-)...

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