November RUX meeting- Book Club!

Join us on November 17 for the next installment of the RUX Book Club! We’ll be discussing A Project Guide To UX Design (http://projectuxd.com/) by Russ Unger, who will be joining us via Skype at 6! This is a great chance to interact with one of most well known User Experience authors as well as your local UX community!

If you don’t already have it, you can purchase the book locally at http://www.fountainbookstore.com/book/9780321607379 (paperback or ePUB)

Where: Snagajob, 4880 Cox Road, Ste #200

When- Wednesday, November 17
Since we have a guest dialing in, we’ll begin promptly at 6

Hope to see everyone there!


October RUX meeting- Cookin’ Personas

Cookin’ Personas: Improvising a Successful Recipe

Join us Wednesday, October 27 at 6pm for this fun and informative session on how to make your personas better!

When: Wednesday, October 27 from 6-7:30pm

Where: Ironworks Consulting, 10900 Nuckols Road, Ste 400, Glen Allen (please note- this is the NEW Ironworks office, not the old location on Cox Road)

Who: UX designers and researchers for web at all experience levels

Project managers

Web designers

Developers

Presentation Overview:

Creating personas is like making a meal for a crowd. The UX researcher must discern the organization’s overall appetite for understanding users, the project’s nutrition needs, and the team’s willingness to try something new (some developers are picky eaters). Finding good recipes and fresh ingredients come next. Cooking takes time, but shouldn’t take too long. Presentation is important. The goal is to serve up personas that are meaningful, authentic and helpful. They should also be nutritious and tasty.

Tom Illmensee, information architect at SnagAJob.com, will describe a personas process used at his company. The talk provides practical advice and shares hard lessons learned on interviewing users, data analysis, synthesis and storytelling. Following the format of TV cooking shows, the presenter will demonstrate the full personas process with handouts and photos.

By the end of this session you’ll have a tested recipe you can use to create a new process or compare with your own personas methods.

Presentation will begin promptly at 6pm- we look forward to seeing you there!


Richmond User Experience Meeting- August book club

Please join us for the RUX book club as we discuss The Design of Everyday Things by Donald Norman. This is an informal, laid back conversation around this easy to read book that parlays our interest in user experience as it relates to the world around us.

http://www.amazon.com/Design-Everyday-Things-Donald-Norman/dp/0385267746
Anyone who designs anything to be used by humans–from physical objects to computer programs to conceptu…al tools–must read this book, and it is an equally tremendous read for anyone who has to use anything created by another human. It could forever change how you experience and interact with your physical surroundings, open your eyes to the perversity of bad design and the desirability of good design, and raise your expectations about how things should be designed.

When: Wednesday, August 25 from 6-7:30pm.
Where: INM United, 201 W. Broad St., at the corner of Broad and Jefferson. Folks should park on the street on Broad, Grace or Jefferson. The conversation may even continue over beers at Popkin Tavern next door!


June RUX meeting- Interactive Prototyping & Axure

Ever wondered about the ins and outs of Axure for prototyping? Here’s your chance to check out actual case studies as Marissa Beatty of Ironworks Consulting and Chris Eklund of Affinion Loyalty Group show off their Axure wizardry! They’ll walk through actual real world work and give you practical advice on how to use this tool.

When: Wednesday, June 30, 2010 from 6-8pm

Where: Ironworks Consulting, 4121 Cox Road, Ste 205

One lucky attendee will win a free Axure license!


Richmond User Experience Group May Meeting- Prototyping in Practice

Prototyping in Practice
SnagAJob (in the training room)
6:00 – 7:30 p.m.
Pizza and drinks provided by SAJ

“I made 5,127 prototypes of my vacuum before I got it right. There were 5,126 failures. But I learned from each one. That’s how I came up with a solution. So I don’t mind failure.” – Sir James Dyson

UX practitioners are often challenged to design web functionality quickly and under pressure. Our responsibility is to ensure design solutions are useful and usable. Prototyping is crucial part of the UX process. In this interactive session, Joe Sokohl (IxDA board member) and Tom Illmensee (SnagAJob) will lead a discussion on prototyping process and techniques.

As a group we will explore:

• reasons for protyping
• approaches (paper? throwaway digital? code-ready?)
• communicationg prototypes to stakeholders, developers, and users
• knowing when to walk away

Share examples, war stories and best practices. Ask your peers questions. We’ll also be giving away a copy of Prototyping: A Practicioner’s Guide by Todd Zaki Warfel to a lucky attendee, and we’ll be giving away digital copies of the book, too.

RUX is a group of information architects, librarians, web developers, usability experts, user experience designers, and other like-minded people from the Richmond/Charlottesville area. Our events are designed to facilitate communication and collaboration among UX practitioners in a relaxed and informal setting. Meetings are free and open to all levels of experience. Students are welcome. Whether you’re a seasoned user experience professional or a newbie, please join us for stimulating conversation!


April RUX meeting-

“User Research on a Shoestring: Knowing Your Users Without Spending a Bundle”

How can you design applications and Web sites if you don’t know who your users are? But what if you don’t have tons of time and heaps of money? Join Web Application Developer Erin White from Virginia Commonwealth University’s Library (VCUL). She will talk about their experience with Usabilla, the CrazyEgg heatmapping software they’re using at VCUL, their mini-feedback methods, and the guerilla tests they’ve run with our users. Also, Tom Illmensee from SnagAJob.com will share some experiences with keeping costs down.

In conjunction with her talk, Rosenfeld Media is giving a way a copy of Nate Bolt & Tony Tulathimutte’s book, Remote Research: Real Users, Real Time, Real Research (http://www.rosenfeldmedia.com/books/remote-research/). Some lucky person will win the book as well as an accompanying PDF version. All attendees will also receive the PDF version of the book.

When? Wednesday, April 28, 2010
6-7:30 pm

Where? Snagajob
4880 Cox Road, Glen Allen, VA


Upcoming Meetings – Spring 2010

RUX has exciting plans for spring 2010. We hope you’ll join us!

March 31 – Web Redesign Case Study

April 28 – Remote User Research

May 26 – Prototyping: Methods and Case Studies

June 30 – Axure: Tips, Tricks and Case Studies

We’re also planning book clubs and social events for the summer months. Details coming soon!


[Job] User Experience Designer

The User Experience Designer in the Media General Digital Group performs information architecture and design tasks required for the creation of MGDG products, employing various IA techniques, using the latest design tools, following best practices and performing usability testing. The UX Designer maintains a steady focus on the end user while communicating effectively with internal stakeholders.

Skills:
Project planning, time management, organizational skills. Ability to quickly and thoroughly troubleshoot complex design problems (for example, assess problems, identify possible solutions, recommend most favorable solution, implement and test solution). High competency with: Photoshop, HTML, CSS, Javascript, Flash, Well-organized. Portfolio

Required.

• Two or more years of experience as a user experience designer, interaction designer, user interface designer, information architect, or similar role

• Visual design expertise demonstrated through mockups and style guides

• Ability to prototype in HTML, JavaScript, CSS, and/or Flash

• Fluent in best practices for web-based information architecture and design, as well as

• Strong knowledge of usability principles and techniques

• History of acquiring user data (conducting usability studies, performing user research) is a plus.

Apply online at www.mediageneral.com and reference Job ID #IMD-000155

EOE


[JOB] Web Designer/Front-end Developer

Position Description:
We are seeking a Web Designer/Front-End Developer to assist in the rapid prototyping of user interface designs for an online account servicing Web site.

Required Skills:
– Expertise in hand-coding HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
– Ability to swiftly create Web prototypes from wireframes and verbal direction
– Strong understanding of usability concepts and best practices
– A knack for designing intuitive layouts and forms for all levels of users
– Aptitude to design optimized Web graphics that maintain an established corporate brand
– Technical savvy and communication skills for conveying ideas and concepts virtually

* IMPORTANT: For a candidate to be considered for this position, a resume and recent online work samples are required. *

General Responsibilities:
– Understand and apply the basics of creative and business strategy.
– Work with Clients, Usability Lead, Creative Director, Copywriter and/or Producer to produce layouts and form designs that are both compelling and cost-effective.
– Produce clean, technically accurate Web files while meeting deadlines.
– Create layouts and prototypes for client presentations and user research
– Effectively communicate design specifications of files to be given to back-end Developers
– Share knowledge and experience across teams
– Work with vendors (Developers, stock photo house, photographer, etc) when necessary
– Understand overall budget constraints of projects
– Able to complete tasks independently and as part of a team.
– Ability to manage deadlines and production scheduling on numerous, concurrent projects.
– Perform effectively in a demanding work environment and show resiliency to stress.

Required Software Skills:
Photoshop, ImageReady/Fireworks, Illustrator and Dreamweaver.

To Apply: Please contact Heather Wrenn at hwrenn@aquent.com


Joe Sokohl to Serve On IxDA Board of Directors

Richmond’s own Joe Sokohl will serve on IXDA’s Board of Directors!

Joe’s 2-year appointment was announced in December. He joins a distinguished group of practitioners on the board.

The Interaction Design Association provides an active, highly practical and often entertaining discussion forum on a spectrum of topics of interest to people who design interactive systems — from web sites to cell phones to touch screens. The IxDA is dedicated to nurturing an international design community through education, conferences, mentoring and discussion across disciplines.

Congratulations, Joe!