August 2019 #CX Briefing

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From a series of images I made in 2004 out of Tostitos corn chips (holiday edition).

Four Things That I’m Thinking About CX

  • The difference between CX and design is useful to ponder because it helps to separate outcome from process.
  • There are experiences that can be wholly crafted by a lone professional designer like with a one-off poster or chair.
  • But for projects that are more complex than a lamp, a product will get made with and by many non-designers on their way to market.
  • When professional designers are less involved, it’s easy to create “bad design.” But it can still be considered good CX.

Three Things I’ve Noticed In The Last 30 Days

  • I am on day 14 of my move from the SaaS product cloud of Automattic into the “digital business transformation” consultancy world of Publicis Sapient.
  • In the past 5 years of Design in Tech Reports I looked at the design-y shifts in startups, big tech, venture capital, and the consultancy space.
  • So now here I am in the last remaining universe in which I haven’t yet worked. Am I finally home? Something tells me … yes.

Two things I love ❤

  • TRUWOMEN Plant Fueled Protein Bars are delicious and meaningful to eat when you think about how most protein bars get to market.
  • Hazard 4 Civilian POD glasses cases have a carabiner-style clip and can comfortably fit oversized spectacles without crushing them.

One Special Link

  • I have started a new WordPress blog over at https://PS.blog to cover all things Publicis Sapient. Please check it out.

One Final Point

  • I’m fielding a variety of thoughts on the acronym “CX” — they’ve been streaming towards me from all parts. Recently John Cain at IIT has been giving me a fantastic seminar on the term. I look forward to sharing all the information I find in the CX.Report when March 2020 comes around.

April 2019 #DesignInTech Briefing

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From the April #DesignInTech Briefing

Four Things That I’m Thinking About Design In Tech

* With the 2019 Design in Tech Report now out and available in short-form and long-form on YouTube, I’ve started collecting material for 2020 from all the interesting (and interested) feedback that I’ve received online.

* My biggest “a-ha” has been a strong reminder that creativity is like Gordon MacKenzie would say, something that takes time. Or as Wieden+Kennedy dogma puts it, “It’s the idea buried ten feet under the ground.”

* Tony Ruth’s exquisite four-frame illustrated take on inequality, equality, equity, and justice emerged in the final minutes before the report went live. It literally came from nowhere, and not a moment too late.

* I’m in love with long-form blogging again after remembering how it’s so easy for a 2nd- or 3rd-party’s clickbait-y article title, or even a tweet, to be interpreted just as if it were a complete summary of all your thoughts.

Three Things I’ve Noticed In The Last 30 Days

* Accenture’s acquisition of Droga5 made me look deeper into what pundits say about consultancy versus agency. Conclusion: AI and data science look to be pit against humans and creativity — it doesn’t have to be that way.

* The Google People (HR) team released their new study on “distributed work” acknowledging that a third of their meetings involve folks in more than two time zones. Expect more tools for increasing timezone inclusivity on teams.

* Nieman Lab reported that Facebook’s News Feed algorithm change last year to increase user engagement has succeeded by as much as 50%. Divisive topics are more easily pushed up by peer networks in priority over publishers’ content. Yay?

Two Unsolicited Non-Tech Products That I ❤

* B.LeekS luggage suitcase wheels make my roll-about bag glide better than when I first got it. Pro-tip: The first size spec pertains to the actual diameter of the wheel.

* Twelve South has discontinued their Surfacepad for Macbook leather wristpads, but you can fight with me on eBay for them. Use an X-Acto blade to cut and fit for your laptop.

One Special Link

* I’m a bit behind on this month’s briefing because I needed to re-draft my upcoming book. Pushing out the 2019 Design in Tech Report changed a lot of my thinking, so the book needed some refactoring. https://howtospeakmachine.com

One Final Point

* AI is a topic that is moving from “oh no!” to “what is it?” — which means we have the opportunity to move from crisis to curiosity if the invisible forces of computation are eventually understood instead of summarily feared.

January 2019 #DesignInTech Briefing

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From the January #DesignInTech Briefing

Four Things That I’m Thinking About Design In Tech

* There is a new tool for effortless product x dev x design collaboration born every week that will solve everything. Not.

* Scaling design at the speed of Moore’s Law is not possible. Scaling design IS possible at a slower-than-desirable velocity.

* Inclusive design has achieved broad acceptance among designers as important, but for non-designers it can be a harder sell.

* Although there is palpable fear with respect to AI’s impact, there’s also some creative curiosity out there.

Three Things I’ve Noticed In The Last 30 Days

* Given how an app like TikTok can succeed outside of China, I wonder how many more popular apps will be proudly Designed in China?

* Boomers, Gen X-ers, Gen Y-ers, and Gen Z-ers all question the value of social media platforms while we watch TV (aka YouTube or Netflix).

* Software is reclaiming its “craft” heritage roots in response to our weakening trust of the big cloud services. Organic, locally-sourced apps anyone?

Two Unsolicited Non-Tech Products That I ❤

* Conus textile shells are both beautiful and affordable, and resemble Wolfram’s Rule 30.

* Little Eyes by Katsumi Komagata is a die-cut picture book for children under 3-months.

One Special Link

* https://designintech.typeform.com/to/Qnh5AA is the new 2019 #DesignInTech Contributor Survey

One Final Point

* Getting techies to learn from non-techies is surprisingly difficult because they don’t live in the same places — which is a sign of a deeper problem.