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Summary: TUG Talk Takeaways - 8 talks given this month! Reflections and slides shared here.


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CS Forum – Sept 12-13, Helsinki, Finland

Daniel Eizans talk, Patching Our Crumbling Foundations Through Information Architecture
Also: post-conference reflection and video featuring Eizans.

MidWest UX logo
MidWest UX – Oct 17-19, Grand Rapids, MI

Andrew Hinton & Daniel Eizans workshop, “The Role of Language in Placemaking
This is the stuff that makes us love IA. Daniel and Andrew deftly reveal how we use language to create meaning and the narratives that shapes our environments — the physical and online worlds share more than meets the eye.

Andrew Hinton’s talk, ““Hey, You Got Your Map In My Territory!: The Role of Language in Placemaking
Get Andrew’s take on how language — something we don’t normally think of as especially environmental or physical — is actually central to how we understand place, as well as how we make coherently embodied experiences in software and elsewhere.

Jessica DuVerneay reflects on the conference as a whole, and shares the three ways she will apply the lessons of placemaking to her work: 1. Discussing it with her clients and colleagues, 2. Increasing her attention to way language makes place, and 3. Striving to make good places, because places make us.

TUG logo
TUG Open House | A2 – Oct 23, Ann Arbor, MI

30+ curious guests heard Daniel Eizans explain a process that starts with your “why” and connects you and your users in a meaningful way. Guests were also treated to a rare peek at TUG’s work while talking shop, eating sushi, and forming friendships.

Ignite UX logo
Ignite UX Michigan – Oct 24, Ann Arbor, MI

Kaarin Hoff talk, “Abstraction as a Tool for Running Successful Projects
Five minutes of insight on abstraction, presentation methods, and information visualization.

Sketch camp chicago logo
SketchCamp – Nov 3, Chicago, IL

Dan Klyn talk, “Because Marshall McLuhan

Closing keynote to cap off a day of sketching that addresses the ways media operate as environments. Klyn makes the case made for the necessity of media ecologist Marshall McLuhan’s insights to our work.

A2 Data Dive Logo
A2 Data Drive – Nov 9, Ann Arbor, MI

Daniel O’Neil and Kaarin Hoff talk, “Listening to Data
Data visualizations as conversation-based and data-driven: Clear, Useful, Ethical, and Credible.


Hummingbird for Content Strategists

By: James Gunter
A lovely, accessible article from James Gunter about the ways that Hummingbird has changed the SEO world, and how it puts rich content front and center. James argues that Hummingbird’s key change is its ability to connect semantic threads of concepts rather than related phrases. One implication of his analysis is that well-architected SEO content would be a literal web of information, rather than the “tentpole” or “spoke and wheel” format of current linking and content strategies. The article includes some interesting comments on Panda and as well.
See the full article Top 5 UX Design Flaws of the Obamacare Website

By: Joseph Caltabellotta
We like that this article avoids the typical finger pointing and considers basic UX heuristics. TUG often talks out the importance of the consistent meaning, purposeful structures, and intentional flow between pages. Caltabellotta points out’s issues in just those terms. The naming conventions are misleading (e.g. ‘Learn’ actually means ‘Apply’), information resources are buried in a swamp of FAQs, in-page links unexpectedly take you off-site, etc. Great quick read without a political soap box.
See the full article

How White Noise Affects UX

By: Dustin Cartwright
Cartwright talks about placing ads in a manner that allows your user to enjoy your site’s content while still paying your bills. “A lot has changed over the last few years with web based advertising and the user experience. Now more than ever, websites are attempting to present ads in a more appealing and approachable manner. In turn, this pays the bills whilst keeping the user’s focus primarily on the content.”
See the full article

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