3 days until my flight to San Francisco
7 days until my final review
12 days until last day of classes
18 days until my graduation day
35 days until I’m allowed to start working again
For the first time I can see the end of AAU. I’m ready to graduate. I’m ready to work. Ready to start my life.
Last week was my final week as an intern at AKQA. It has been a really great and rewarding experience. I’ve learned more than I thought, not only as an UX designer but also personally. Since moving to New York three months ago, my life has been nothing like my life in San Francisco.
I’ve loved every second of it, but it’s been a real challenge too. I wanted to do the best work possible for AKQA and at the same time take 3 online classes. Having both responsibilities over my head has been a constant time management battle.
It is now a little bit more than a month until I graduate from AAU. I’m in the process of finishing up my portfolio and preparing myself for my final review and graduation ceremony in San Francisco. I’m so excited for what’s next.
Off to our first stop: Las Vegas. Bringing my change bucket that I’ve collected over the years since I still don’t know the American change currency (at Enter The Fabriken)
My two and half years in San Francisco has come to an end. I never thought I would stay here this long, and I certainly never thought I would stay in the states this long. It’s a bittersweet feeling. I love San Francisco but it is not challenging me anymore.
I’m really excited for what’s to come. Joe and I have been busy packing up and selling most of our things and we are preparing for our cross-country trip. I will begin my internship as a user experience designer on January 14th. And in may I will graduate from the Academy. I couldn’t be more happy and excited for what 2013 is going to bring.
Last week Kelli Robertson, Group Brand Strategy Director at Goodby Silverstein & Partners, came and talk to our class about the importance of creative research. For me, having a background in marketing, asking the right interview questions was something I leaned early on. But it was not until this semester that I realized the importance of asking questions that are creative and actually interesting to answer. I think this is something that is easy to forget. More often we focus on asking the right question instead of focusing on what we actually want out of the questions (and why anyone would even bother to answer it). Her short talk inspired me to be more thoughtful about asking creative questions. As a student, I find this especially important because I have limited resources.
(Photo credit: Cameron Maddux)
We’re getting closer to the end of 2012 and trends for 2013 are rolling in. Here’s some trend reports that I find interesting:
Frog - 20 tech trends for 2013 (thanks Joe).
Forbes - 10 top strategic technology trends for 2013
Check it out here
JWT - 10 trends for 2013
17-5641 Emerald was unveiled last night as the color of 2013 by Pantone. Finally we can put Tangerine Tango behind us for a while. According to Pantone’s release emerald is ”..a color of elegance and beauty that enhances our sense of well-being, balance and harmony”.
Earlier this semester I was granted access to Simmons data through AAU. I was exciting to learn how to use the program and put it to work for a few of my current projects. Now, at the end of the fall semester I am using it almost every week.
One thing I’ve learned is that I need a clear idea of what I want to know before I start researching. It’s too easy to get sidetracked and start comparing all sorts of attributes that have nothing to do with my research.
Here is some sample data I collected for my Ad Research class. For this Simmons run I looked at five different general opinions for the scale “agree a lot”:
These opinions were compared between two segments: people who cross-country ski/downhill ski or snowboard every chance they get, and people who seldom cross country ski/downhill ski or snowboard.
Here’s what I discovered:
“I enjoy taking risks”- 178/313*
People who seldom ski/snowboard are more likely to agree a lot with the statement “I enjoy taking risks” than people who ski/snowboard every chance they get. I was surprised to see big difference between the index number since I thought that people who ski/snowboard every chance they get would be more inclined to take risks. It would have been interesting to see how this index number could have compared to other sport related activities. (Over 31% of people who agree a lot with the statement “I enjoy taking risks” are more likely to ski/snowboard seldom then the general population).
“How I spend my time is more important than how much money I make” - 130/82*
People who agree a lot with the statement “how I spend my time is more important than how much money I make” are more likely to ski/snowboard every chance they get rather then seldom.
(13% of people who agree a lot with the statement are more likely to ski/snowboard every change they get).
“I do some sport/exercise at least once a week” - 218/133*
59.2% of the general population who snowboard/ski every chance they get also do some sport/exercise at least once a week. While only 36.1% of people who ski/snowboard seldom do some sport/exercise at least once a week.
“I am perfectly happy with my standard of living” - 142/74*
There is a significant difference between people who ski/snowboard every chance they get and seldom, when it comes to their general opinion about their standard of living. 42% of people that agree a lot with the statement “I am perfectly happy with my standard of living” are skiing/snowboarding every chance they get. While only 7.4% of people skiing/snowboarding seldom agree with the same statement.
“I am good at fixing things” - 151/108*
There’s no significant difference between these two. 2% of people who agree with the statement “I am good at fixing things” ski/snowboard every chance they get. While 3% of these people ski/snowboard seldom.
(Index number between people who cross-country ski/downhill ski or snowboard every chance they get and people who cross country ski/downhill ski or snowboard seldom).
Yesterday I got the chance to spend my afternoon at the PSFK Conference here in San Francisco. I heard a lot of great stuff but there were two talks that stand out for me. The first one was from Michael McDaniel (Frog Design), who talked about re-inventing mass transit by implementing cable car lines in urban environments. This idea would not only be cost effective but it also creates opportunities for mass transit in cities (in this case Austin) with limited space. The way he presented his vision stood out to me the most. I hope he can find a city willing to participate soon.
My second favorite talk was given by Josh Walton (Rockwell Group), who spoke about reducing the distance between the physical world and the digital world. He showed a few examples of what the Rockwell Group has done do to incorporate digital technology into popular physical environments. One installation, which took place in downtown San Jose, highlighted the amount of social activity that takes place in Silicon Valley by projecting digital animations (from Foursquare, Twitter and Instagram) onto the facade of a large building.
He also challenged us to rethink the idea of the personal computer and the various ways we can interact with new technology. Another cool thing he shared was their new project Spacebrew, a toolkit for prototyping interactive spaces.