Consulting, Publishing, Engineering

Big D Conference 2013

I attended the Big (D)esign conference in Dallas again – it’s my 4th year attending, and I am still learning new things every year.  I saw a lot of sessions that referenced scifi or other pop culture this year, and I really enjoyed them.  For example, Ben Judy did a terrific job with his session “Pay Attention, 007!: The Usability of James Bond‘s Gadgets”.   It was an engaging, informative talk that delivered a ton of good advice in a fun way.  He even posted a video of the talk on YouTube – find it at   I’d love to see more of this type of thing – who’s up for doing a James Bond and Tech Comm talk?  I’ll even get you started – in “The Spy Who Loved Me”, James Bond has 3 minutes to prevent two subs from firing nuclear weapons and destroying the world. What does he do? Sits at a console, picks up the handy User Guide. Flips a page, types a few keys, flips to a second page and types again. Success! The world is saved!

Another session I really enjoyed was Nathan Shedroff’s keynote called “Make it So: Learning from SciFi Interfaces” – here’s a shorter version that he did with Chris Noessel a few years ago.

Bill Scott gave a great talk on Lean UX Principles… but my favorite take-away was the “Caffeine Curve” – this one captured on twitter by @mattderusha.  Thanks, Matt!

The closing talk by Brandon Oldenberg from Moonbot studios was also really memorable.  He won an Academy award for Film short and created the scarecrow Chipotle video. They’re also doing some interesting things combining video games and books where the hard copy and the app work together.  He asks himself: “Would my 7 year old self like this?”

And of course we had tons of fun stuff to do – including Casino night (turns out, I really like Craps!), and lots of social networking time.



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