Our November Community Meeting started with a recap of October’s meeting activity, introductions and a quick response to this month’s icebreaker question, “What are you most thankful for that is related to design?” The answers varied from art education, to individuals who have given opportunities or support, to improvements in design software as attendees reminisced about the days when Adobe products were delivered on floppy disk.
Both the local and national AIGA community activities were discussed. One in particular, the non-profit organization, [HAS HEART], was highlighted as it was awarded an Innovate grant by AIGA for their project 50 States: Veterans and Artists United. This organization partners veterans with designers to bring these communities together to better understand each other. Together, they create designs and products to raise awareness. This year’s program will take them to all 50 states, pairing one veteran with one artist from each state to tell the veteran’s story through art and design. They are scheduled to come through Tennessee in early 2019.
With November 9th being World Usability Day, Andrew Millen and Matt Washburn of Simple Focus joined us to speak on the topics of usability and user experience. They walked through the critical role that research, testing, and iteration play in solving key usability issues.
“Usability means making sure something works well, and that a person of average ability or experience can use it for its intended purpose without getting hopelessly frustrated.” – Steve Krug
After answering some questions, Matt and Andrew brought up two volunteers to play a game to visualize how user experience design applies to real world problems. The first person, Rod, was given a problem to solve, and told that he could interview the second person with three questions. The second person was given instructions to answer truthfully except for a secret restriction provided her by Matt. Rod was able to successfully determine Nikki’s restriction with well thought out questions and provided her was a great user experience.
After the event, attendees joined UX Memphis for the UX Happy Hour by VACO at City & State for more socializing.
The next AIGA community meeting will be December 14th from 6pm-7:30pm at CoWork Memphis.