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These last three years, out of all the success he had — five rings, multiple MVPs, All-Star Game MVP of this league, first team for all-life, all-world, all-basketball — felt like these last three years were the happiest I’ve ever seen him…being able to just be with his daughters, be with his family, because when we’re playing this game of basketball, we give so much to it. — Lebron James on Kobe Bryant

Whatever your opinion is of Kobe Bryant, few people will deny that he made basketball a thrill to watch for 20 years. Hardly anyone would doubt his…


The Christian Themes in Pixar’s Onward

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In over 20 years of storytelling, Pixar has shown us that it doesn’t matter if you’re talking about toys, monsters, fish, or made-up creatures — you can still tell human stories. Toys can help us cope with feeling unwanted. Fish can teach us how to let go of our fears. Monsters can teach us about integrity in the workplace. And little rat chefs are just adorable.

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

In Onward, two brothers learn a lesson in gratitude while on a quest. Ian Lightfoot, the shy and skinny protagonist never met his deceased father and has an opportunity to see him for one…


Kobe Bryant demonstrates his basketball IQ by analyzing past NBA games
Kobe Bryant demonstrates his basketball IQ by analyzing past NBA games
Detail: From the mind of Kobe Bryant (ESPN)

“What matters most is playing the game the right way and having the courage to grow…When you do that, the [championship] ring takes care of itself.” Phil Jackson, Eleven Rings

Elite basketball players often talk about playing “good basketball.” It refers to how productively the team is moving and playing together, beyond the technical excellence of individual players. Achieving this requires each player to have a high basketball IQ, which is defined as a player’s ability to read the situation at game speed, make good decisions, and execute the right play at the right time. …


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“If your design isn’t based on evidence, what is it based on?” Erika Hall

Why: Evidence-based design

Research is an essential tool that helps us understand our surroundings. Imagine the things an enterprise can accomplish when it seeks to maintain intimate knowledge of its people. Research is a systematic way to ask questions and increase our knowledge of the people we are designing for. This is how we create experiences.

What: Timeless Research

Broadly speaking, there are two categories of design research. Foundational research helps establish a fundamental understanding of a particular group of people. You might observe them in…


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2015 Slack TV commercial. Animals getting it done.

An adorable 2015 commercial for Slack showed an office full of animals using the tool to go from concept to product delivery, presumably in a single day. Slack is part of an endless list of corporate productivity tools, each promising to help you do more work in less time and to ensure your work never leaves your side, whether at home, the office, or somewhere in between.

Statistics show that business productivity in the U.S. has gone up over 300% since 1950 . The computing power in our mobile devices alone is more than 100,000 times faster than the computers…


Great experience design is…completely literary — a narrative of an outcome that is achieved through the design of a product or service. — Yazin Akkawi

It is deceptively easier to articulate the features you’d like your product to have, than it is to describe in simple terms what it is, who it’s for, and how it works. That narrative is what transforms an amalgam of technical deliverables into a genuine human experience.

I worked with a client who wanted to create a design “system” that translated every problem into “moments” along a timeline, and needed help articulating the idea further…


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Our UX team functions as the internal design agency for the IT practice of a global enterprise. I analyzed the state of design in the organization and formalized our process with an eye toward maturing the company’s overall design practice.

The process takes inspiration from the Design Maturity Continuum, conceived by Jess McCullen at Situ, which is a spectrum that describes the depth at which a program or company is thinking about design. We needed a process that accommodates the different degrees of expectations that stakeholders have about design. …


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Company [C] has thousands of consultants that travel the globe daily. Through user research, stakeholder interviews, and prototyping, we cast a vision for a new travel experience.

Context

Despite the amount of travel Company [C] engages in, there is no central hub for consultants to manage their travel needs. Stakeholders care most about making sure travelers comply with immigration and approval requirements. Travelers want clarity on what to do, in addition to more targeted help on-site (cell phone usage in foreign countries, taxis, local information, etc.).

Approach

We conducted several rounds of traveler interviews to understand their pain points, and…


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Cornerstone Design System (CDS) consists of a UI library and design guidelines for creating products at Company [A](client name changed) that are consistent with the brand and practices sound UX fundamentals.

Context

While the hundreds of publicly available design systems, blog articles, and conferences all make a claim as to what a design system is supposed to be, our challenge was to figure out the design system that [A] needs. [A] has numerous independent development groups and no centralized design practice.

Approach

CDS needed to serve as a voice that defines the “right” design. …


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For all the world’s love for design and user experience, design education has had hard time keeping up. Human-computer interaction (HCI) has existed as a field since the 1970s, but today’s UX and HCI programs have not produced the design leaders that we need. Design bootcamps — short intensive programs designed to get you a design job in months — have risen to meet this challenge, offering a more affordable and more focused avenue for learning user-centered design. …

Ginmann

Design Manager based in Boston, MA

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