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Carl Smith

Carl Smith

Bureau Of Digital @carlsmith

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Carl Smith is an irreverant ditcher of the nine-to-five and mortal enemy of the overworked lifestyle. Owner and founder of nGen Works, Carl’s role is that of an advisor, to nGen and other companies, on how to create self-sustaining teams that perform at the highest levels. Carl has made a name for himself by creating a new framework for how we get things done, and by enabling us to realign our creative communities. When he’s not conducting business experiments with companies around the world, he’s busy sculpting a new face for the world of work… and play.

Appearances

Closing Keynote TBD Carolina Alumni Center
Jenn Bane

Jenn Bane

Cards Against Humanity @jenndangerous

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Jenn is the community director behind comedy party game Cards Against Humanity, the top-selling, most reviewed, and most wished for toy or game on Amazon.com. She has a B.A. in journalism and now focuses in new media, editing, and storytelling, specifically examining advertisement, comedy, and how the two intersect. Jenn organizes the Science Ambassador Scholarship, a full-ride scholarship for women studying science, technology, engineering, or math. She also co-hosts Friendshipping, a podcast exploring friendship and mental health.

Finding Our Company’s Voice

People often hear about Cards Against Humanity's crazy stunts and pranks (like the time 30,000 fans ordered a box of poop as part of a Black Friday sale), but they are left with a million questions. How did we come up with the idea? How were we able to execute it so quickly with such a tiny budget? Is it even legal to send poop in the mail?

In this talk, Jenn will share behind-the-scenes stories and explain how Cards Against Humanity discovered its voice as a business.

Appearances

Keynote TBD Carolina Alumni Center
Rachel Smith

Rachel Smith

CodePen @rachsmithtweets

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Another Aussie in LA. Totes profesh pixel pusher, JavaScript wrangler and triple hearter Works at CodePen.

Special Agent You: Jank Detective

Web animation has moved beyond being a novelty or experiment and is now a part of the mainstream development toolset. Due to the dynamic nature of web animation and the load it can place on our browsers and hardware, developers are faced with a whole new set of potential issues that they weren’t faced with while building static layouts.

Let Rachel show you how to investigate your projects, diving in to the browser to identify the common culprits that can cause a number of animation performance issues including the dreaded “jank”. With the help of the tips shared in this talk you’ll be able to solve your own animation cases and demystify how web animation technologies work in the process.

Appearances

Session Special Agent You: Jank Detective
Mat Marquis

Mat Marquis

Bocoup @wilto

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Mat @Wilto Marquis is a designer-slash-developer working at Bocoup in Boston. Mat is a member of the jQuery Mobile team, technical editor at A List Apart, and an active member of the open source community. He’s probably flipping out about something on Twitter as we speak.

Performance Under Pressure

Look. You’re busy people. You’ve been hearing a lot about the importance of building highly performant websites over the past few years, and there isn’t much there to argue with—not in a vacuum, at least. The trouble is, you and I have plenty of important things to worry about already: flexibility, maintainability, and accessibility, just to name a few. We only have so much time and our clients only have so much budget. Performance can end up an afterthought; an “if we have time at the end of the project” ticket languishing in an issue tracker somewhere, forever.

Well, if you’re performance-minded but strapped for time, I have some good news. It doesn’t have to be a stand-alone phase, and it doesn’t have to be something we sell to our clients and bosses; it doesn’t have to be a big deal at all, really. We can sneak some minor—and some major—performance improvements into the ways we’re working right now. We can build a faster experience for our users without slowing ourselves down.

Appearances

Keynote Performance Under Pressure Carolina Alumni Center
Matt Griffin

Matt Griffin

Bearded @elefontpress

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Matt Griffin is a designer and founder of Bearded and Wood Type Revival. Matt is a writer, speaker, and A List Apart columnist. He is the director of the upcoming documentary film What Comes Next Is the Future.

I, Web Designer

Matt Griffin (founder, Bearded) has been thinking about what it means to be a "web designer," grappling with the many (and sometimes misunderstood) disciplines that come into play. All of the rapid changes in technology we grapple with every day have resulted in a shifting landscape of skills and responsibilities. What’s a designer to do? Luckily, Matt is in the unique position to answer this question from a variety of perspectives and experiences.

To create his documentary film about the web, What Comes Next Is the Future, Matt conducted dozens of hours of interviews, many of which could not make it into the final film. This talk draws on that additional footage, capturing the thoughts and experiences of industry leaders Trent Walton (founder, Paravel), Irene Au (operating partner, Khosla Ventures), Ethan Marcotte (author, Responsive Web Design), Indi Young (founder, Adaptive Path), Brad Frost (author, Atomic Design), Yesenia Perez-Cruz, Kelly Goto (founder, gotoresearch), and many more.

With Matt as a guide, these luminaries' perspectives create a cohesive, multi-faceted view of the modern web industry and a designer’s place in it.

Appearances

Keynote I, Web Designer Workshop Responsive Web Design for In-House Teams and Non-Unicorns
Ron Edelen

Ron Edelen

Myjive @ronedelen

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Ron is a cofounder of Myjive, a digital agency based out of Charlotte, N.C. He started his career working for motion design studios in Los Angeles, Calif., where he began blending his passion for film, pop culture, fine arts and emerging technology.

Badass Motion Design for Interactive

My early career started as a motion designer for ABC, Discovery Channel, FoxSports, AMC and the NFL Network. Fast forward 10 years and I am now carving out best practices for motion design as a driving force for UX. This talk will focus on achieving new interactive paradigms by dissecting large and small format touch and gestures experiences for Volvo Trucks, Honeywell, BMW, Wake Tech and others.

Appearances

Keynote Badass Motion Design for Interactive Carolina Alumni Center
Anna Stout

Anna Stout

Astute Communications @Astute_Anna

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Anna Stout is the owner of Astute Communications - a Nashville, TN based interactive, design and marketing agency specializing in developing comprehensive digital experiences to support and expand new and existing brands.

Anna is a "woman in tech", a wife, mother, web developer, designer and an entrepreneur. She is an advocate for discovering and being a catalyst for your own truth. She is actively building websites and a life that she can be excited about.

Appearances

Session Discovery to Design: 5 Crucial Steps for Planning Your Website. Carolina Alumni Center
Aaron Irizarry

Aaron Irizarry

Nasdaq @aaroni

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Aaron Irizarry, known in luchadore circles as El Cubano Magnifico, is Director of User Experience for Nasdaq Product Design and has been building online products for startups and large corporations for over 10 years. Aaron is also a public speaker and consults with companies providing design studio and collaborative critique workshops to help their product teams and stakeholders/managers improve the discussion around product design.

In his Talk…

We’ll explore critique as both an activity and an aspect of any communication or collaboration. Attendees will walk away with:
A clearer understanding of critique is and why asking for “feedback” is problematic.
Methods for gathering useful feedback from clients and teammates.
Ideas on how to introduce team members to the idea of critique and get everyone using it.
An understanding of where critique fits within the design processes and how to incorporate it into projects.

Appearances

Session Discussing Design
Eileen Webb

Eileen Webb

Nasdaq @webmeadow

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Eileen Webb is a content strategist and co-founder of webmeadow, a firm that helps progressive organizations develop content and technology strategies to make the world a better place. Her background is in server-side coding and being that odd person who translates between the marketing and development teams. Webmeadow's offices are located on a solar-powered farm in northern New Hampshire; her Twitter feed is equal parts content strategy and pictures of poultry.

Building a Better Authoring Experience

Nothing brings UX, IA, design, and content strategy to life like launching a shiny new site: teasers fit neatly without any ellipses, images are cropped perfectly for different screen sizes, and related content is wonderfully relevant. But after a few months, things start to slip as ongoing content maintenance and creation steers the site away from its original pristine vision.

We’ll explore how to improve the quality of your content by improving the experience of the people who are creating and maintaining content in the CMS after the site is built. We’ll learn how to communicate the information needed for ongoing support of UX, structured content, information architecture, and design. Most importantly, we’ll talk about how to work with our authors to create an admin experience that helps them do their jobs well.

Appearances

Session Building a Better Authoring Experience
Patrick Haney

Patrick Haney

Partners + Napier @notasausage

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Patrick Haney is not a sausage. He’s a designer who codes, often experimenting with new front-end development techniques and responsive design methods. As a former instructor at the Center for Digital Arts in Boston and a speaker at several conferences over the years, he enjoys traveling and sharing his experiences in his spare time.

Design for the Device Ecosystem

The landscape of internet-ready devices is quickly growing, allowing people to access content from pocketable devices and big screen TVs alike. But designing usable interfaces for big and small is a challenge, especially when those devices are being used to compliment each other. Hear firsthand from two seasoned designers about the pitfalls and best practices of designing for these unique experiences and the Second Screen. They’ll talk about handling different methods of input and finding room for varying amounts of output, designing within existing UI constraints, and much more.

Appearances

Session Design for the Device Ecosystem
Jenna Marino

Jenna Marino

Hanerino @jennamarino

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Jenna Marino is a designer whose focus is on providing superior user experiences across all device platforms, especially when it comes to mobile and television applications. She’s the sensible half of Hanerino, a design studio she and her now husband started in 2009. Together they work with clients big and small, and she’s currently tasked with the design effort on Univision’s products for the web, TV and mobile devices.

Design for the Device Ecosystem

The landscape of internet-ready devices is quickly growing, allowing people to access content from pocketable devices and big screen TVs alike. But designing usable interfaces for big and small is a challenge, especially when those devices are being used to compliment each other. Hear firsthand from two seasoned designers about the pitfalls and best practices of designing for these unique experiences and the Second Screen. They’ll talk about handling different methods of input and finding room for varying amounts of output, designing within existing UI constraints, and much more.

Appearances

Session Design for the Device Ecosystem
Mariah Hay

Mariah Hay

Pluralsight @mariahhay

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Mariah Hay is the VP of User Experience for Pluralsight, an online subscription based education provider for the technology community. She also teaches graduate Design Management classes for Savannah College of Art and Design. Her expertise in implementing human-centered design product practices at the enterprise level stems from over a decade of tenure in the industry. She has served as UX Director for Universal Mind, the largest independent digital agency in North America, Director of User Experience for remote patient monitoring company AMC Health, and Design Manager for healthcare GPO and Analytics Company VHA, in Innovation Practices to look at future innovation commercialization opportunities in the healthcare space.

Confusing UX with UI can cost you

Over the past ten years the world of digital tools has shifted from B2B to B2C. Interfaces that were once purely utilitarian have taken a path that not only integrated them with physical products, but also surpassed the physical product – becoming the product themselves. Two thirds of Americans have smartphones and with them access to the Internet, over a million apps, and an endless stream of digital content. The most successful companies know how to wield UX as a strategy for capturing their user’s attention, whether it’s their employee, or their customer. Companies who confuse UX with merely making and interface “pretty” will fail every time. We will talk about:

The difference between UX and UI, and why it is so often confused
How to understand the maturity of UX within your organization
Where UX can benefit you the most (Internal company tools / External customer products)

Appearances

Session Confusing UX with UI can cost you
Keith Frankel

Keith Frankel

Firecracker @thekeithf

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Keith Frankel is a startup product executive and award-winning speaker based in Boston, MA. Formerly the Creative Director at HubSpot (IPO) and Producer at MTV, Keith is now the Chief Experience Officer at ed-tech startup Firecracker, as well as the host of CreativeMornings Boston. In his spare time, he's the creator of Adventures In Honesty, Creative Dissent, and Proof of Hope.

Reverse Engineering your Vision

This session is all about getting from here to there, or more specifically, how companies can plan for and strategize their short and mid-term efforts in order to achieve their longterm vision. In this session, Keith will share how the companies he has worked for go from vision to strategy to product execution, using his current company Firecracker – a bootstrapped but profitable Boston-based startup – as a hands-on case study. By the end of this session, you'll be able to walk away with a framework to help you ensure that what you're building is right, when you're building it is right, and how you're building it is right.

Appearances

Session Reverse Engineering your Vision
Pamela Pavliscak

Pamela Pavliscak

Change Sciences @paminthelab

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She founded Change Sciences, to better understand our conflicted relationship with technology and has worked with extraordinary teams at Adecco, Ally, Chase, NBC Universal, Prudential, VEVO, and Virgin to name a few. Pamela is an O'Reilly author and has books on Positive Design and Next-Gen Happiness coming out in 2016.

Gen Z and the Future of Technology

GenZ (1995-present) is the largest generation yet and true digital natives. The attitudes and behaviors of Zs will have a big impact on the future of technology. Grounded in data from hundreds of online research sessions, diaries, and interviews, learn what Gen Z really does online and the ways it will change how we design the experience.

Appearances

keynote Gen Z and the Future of Technology
Jeremy Frank

Jeremy Frank

Viget @jeremyfrank

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Former webmaster, current master of the web. With an undergraduate in multimedia technologies and a creative eye, Jeremy lends a high level of quality and craftsmanship to his work.

He’s been working on the web since the late '90s. Happy to have moved beyond table layouts and flash intros, he now focuses on responsive build-out, CMS integration, and compelling animation -- all while keeping a healthy balance between innovation and responsibility.

Flexbox Rocks

From floats to inline-blocks to table-cell workarounds, we can do CSS based layout tricks with our eyes closed. We even have Flexbox, the new kid on the block, but it hasn’t been stable enough to use (or properly understood) until now. But how exactly is Flexbox any better? What can it do for us that we can’t do already? And why should we have to learn an entirely new layout methodology if the way we're doing things now works perfectly fine?

In this talk, I’ll cover the basics of Flexbox and explain what problems it solves. More importantly, I’ll show real world examples of how we’ve been using Flexbox in our recent work at Viget, and ultimately convince you that Flexbox rocks!

Appearances

Session Flexbox Rocks
Bradee Evans

Bradee Evans

Adobe @bradee

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Her largest contribution to Photoshop was to help identify the need to serve designers more thoroughly. Once that was established she and/or her team have shipped; linked smart objects, cloud linked smart objects, stateful (with layer comps baked in) smart objects, artboards, smart guides, guide sets, guides per artboard, CC Libraries, font search and many many more design features. In addition to continuing work on photo manipulation and other Adobe Magic initiatives.

She is also pretty proud of the work she did prior to Photoshop when co-developing an in-house entrepreneurship program called Pipeline.

Her super power is building and protecting a positive atmosphere in which excellent product design can flourish.

Design Judo

You're busy. I'm busy, we're all busy. What being a product designer on Photoshop can teach us all about leveraging momentum, our team, and our strengths.

Here is a link to the Judo article that that talk would be partially based on.

Appearances

Session Design Judo
David DeSandro

David DeSandro

Metafizzy @desandro

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Dave DeSandro runs his own business, Metafizzy, where he develops and supports open-source front-end software like Isotope, Masonry, and Flickity.

Practical UI Physics

Appearances

Session Practical UI Physics
Julia Ouellette

Julia Ouellette

Designer/Developer @jooliah

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Julia is a front-end designer and developer whose focus is the creation of engaging single page web apps, interactive educational materials and corporate dashboards. Julia is passionate about sharing tech knowledge and is actively involved in the local web community. With a small business background, a BCOM in Entrepreneurial Management, and an extensive history in both design and development, Julia’s aim is to shorten the gap between concept and deployment for small teams and freelancers.

Prototyping: Beyond The Wireframe

Prototyping a new site or app is key to anticipating logical inconsistencies and identifying potential development roadblocks. It can also be crucial for earning client respect and achieving project commitment. This session will cover the best prototyping tools available: from basic views and quick turnarounds for proof of concept, to complex behaviours and high fidelity demo apps for realistic views across multiple devices (including client feedback integration, animations and collaborative tools). Choosing the right prototyping tool can have a dramatic impact on timelines, budget, and project success—make the smart choice!

Appearances

Session Prototyping: Beyond The Wireframe
Nathan Spainhour

Nathan Spainhour

Iron Yard @nathanspainhour

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Nathan attended Florida State University in Tallahassee, Fl - bouncing between majors ranging from theatrical scene design to photography. Somehow in the end, he ended up with a degree in graphic design, a girlfriend that would become his wife, and (with her persuasion) an affinity for small dogs. After college, he returned to SC and began a career in design and advertising. The last 10 years Nathan has worked as a lead digital creative on brands like EDF, Intuit Turbo Tax and Ryobi Power Tools. Now he's happily leading the branding and creative efforts at The Iron Yard. Proposed talk topic/point to cover/areas of expertise.

The trials and tribulations of building a national brand

The Iron Yard is still a very young company, but it is growing very quickly. It’s growth is not only reflected in how many campuses are open, but more importantly in public awareness. We are constantly undergoing challenges of keeping our brand consistent visually as well as with our messaging. Here are the biggest challenges we’ve faced, and how we’ve overcome them.

Appearances

Session The trials and tribulations of building a national brand
Megan Zlock

Megan Zlock

Viget @meganzlock

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Megan is a Front-End Developer at Viget by day and hobbyist illustrator by night based near Washington, DC.

Craft CMS

Appearances

Session Craft CMS
Greg Aker

Greg Aker

Vinli @gaker

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I'm a thrasher, saxophone player and writer of code. DevOps @vinli.

Modern App Architecture with Docker

Appearances

Session Modern App Architecture with Docker
Tera Simon

Tera Simon

Atlantic BT @tcaldsimon

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Fondly known as a Southern Belle with Yankee flair, Tera Simon is currently the Director of Client Engagement for Atlantic BT in Raleigh, NC with over a decade of Project Management experience, Tera has helped define, document and implement process within ABT. Her attention to detail and grasp of usability empower her to see projects evolve on schedule and within scope, while achieving the high level of quality that she is recognized for delivering. Tera has the ability to combine traditional graphic design awareness and new media technologies with classic sensibilities, and apply this not just to her clients' projects, but also to her team.

When she’s not sprinting from meeting to meeting, you can find her supporting local breweries, travelling, and educating anyone that will listen on why football is the greatest sport around.

The State of the State: the Digital Transformation of NC.gov.

Most organizations have service agreements. NC.gov has a mandate: to serve every citizen, non-profit and business in the State of North Carolina. NC.gov was struggling to meet these demands. While all the information one might need was available somewhere within NC.gov's network of agency websites, finding it was challenging. NC.gov broblem was a crisis of usability. As a result, many visitors were frustrated and opted to call agency offices directly, which resulted in slower response times and even more frustration. NC.gov was also on the search for an internal transformation within the state that may change how agencies work together, and how they think about their content and the services they provide to the public. NC.gov needed a transformation. A transformation in design, user experience and technology infrastructure that would better serve its audience.

This is a discussion of how Atlantic BT solved a tough digital problem to bring about North Carolina's Digital Transformation. We were asked to create a unified look and feel, that shows coordination across the state, will provide better customer service and predictable interface. Up-to-date, robust functionality, accessibility for all devices and for all audiences, and easy-to-maintain websites were also key to this project. I’ll provide you with a high level project overview, the problems that NC.gov faced and the methods and best practices that Atlantic BT brought to the table to create a digital transformation. The quest became known as the digital commons because we are working together to make each of the government sites highly informative, useful, and easy to use.

Appearances

Session The State of the State: the Digital Transformation of NC.gov.
Erik Runyon

Erik Runyon

University of Notre Dame @erunyon

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Erik Runyon Technical Director for Marketing Communications at the University of Notre Dame, has been developing websites for fun and profit since 1995, and joined the university in 2007. Erik enjoys chatting and writing about web performance, accessibility, mobile support, and RWD.

At Your Service - The Next Generation of Offline Websites

Lets face it. There are more devices out there than you can support with dedicated native apps. And except for very specific cases, most of what you’ll want to do with your app is available through web API’s. And yes, this includes offline support. Whether it’s a loss of cellular connectivity or lousy wifi at a conference, there will be times when a site can and should be available when the network is not. During this presentation we’ll take a look at your options for storing data in the client browser and how you can leverage them.

Appearances

Session At Your Service - The Next Generation of Offline Websites
Caralyn Green

Caralyn Green

Bearded @beardedstudio

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Caralyn helps bridge the gap between user experience and business strategy. She uses her background in journalism, publishing, and research to create original concepts and manage key client projects.

Appearances

Workshop Responsive Web Design for In-House Teams and Non-Unicorns
Patrick Fulton

Patrick Fulton

Bearded @patrickfulton

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Patrick started building web sites in 1997, and never stopped. He takes pride in high-quality code, solving complex problems with simple solutions, and helping others. He is a frequent public speaker and writer on web development.

Appearances

Workshop Responsive Web Design for In-House Teams and Non-Unicorns
Rebecca Serr

Rebecca Serr

Bearded @beccaserr

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Rebecca applies her training in cognitive psychology, biology, and art to investigate how people think and what’s important to them. She translates those understandings into beautiful designs that solve users’ problems and meet stakeholders’ goals.

Appearances

Workshop Responsive Web Design for In-House Teams and Non-Unicorns
Rob Harr

Rob Harr

Spark Box @robertHarr

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As Vice President of Sparkbox Rob is responsible for the operations and financials of the company. With a background in software development, Rob is always ready to challenge the development process. On any given day Rob meets with prospective clients, works with employees, and continues to evolve the business of Sparkbox.

Managing a Project from the “Last Responsible Moment

We have begun to describe our projects with words like “Responsive,” “Flexible,” “Fluid,” “Agile,” and “User Centered,” but we continue to manage our projects the same way we always have. How can we deliver on new grand promises without completely changing our thinking about the work—including project management?

It is more important than ever to embrace the learning that occurs during a project; and in turn, we should wait to make decisions until the best information is available. Learn to be conformable with the unknown, and avoid making decisions that can be better made tomorrow. Only then will we truly start to think in an agile way.

During our time together, we will walk through a list of guidelines by which successful project decisions can be made. These guidelines come from a wide range of projects—large enterprise environments to small websites. At the core of these guidelines is a desire to change the project management process to allow for better decision making.

Appearances

Session Managing a Project from the “Last Responsible Moment
Ben Callahan

Ben Callahan

Spark Box @bencallahan

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President of Sparkbox and founder of the Build Right workshop series, Ben shares his ideas about the web on the Sparkbox Foundry and other leading industry blogs. He’s incredibly grateful for the team at Sparkbox as they pioneer new responsive web design techniques, and he continues to push for great user experiences outside the context of specific devices. You can find him speaking around the world, rambling on Twitter, tinkering with his personal site, or in his backyard splitting wood for next winter.

Lessons Learned: From Crafting Code to Curating Culture

Over the past 15 years, Ben Callahan has slowly transitioned from software engineering, to frontend development, to founding and leading a web studio. This presentation is a mix of lessons learned from these experiences. We’ll talk about core ideals you can strive for that are consistent no matter what you do in your day-to-day. And hopefully, you’ll walk away with a few ways to avoid some of the mistakes Ben has made.

Appearances

Keynote Lessons Learned: From Crafting Code to Curating Culture Co-Session Keeping it Human
Bryce Bigger

Bryce Bigger

The Bigger Design @brycebigger

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Bryce Bigger is a designer, developer, author, tinkerer, and habitual line-stepper. By day he’s the Principal of The Bigger Design, where he creates games, apps, animations, and, of course, websites for clients like the US Navy, Oracle, Ping Golf, Lockheed Martin, and the National Institutes of Health. By night, he’s an indie game developer working on his first title and hoping to not go insane during the process.

WebVR 101

Virtual Reality (VR) is finally coming to the masses in 2016. And why shouldn't it come to the browser too, right? While currently still experimental, it's possible to get WebVR working today with polyfills (fallbacks) for Google Cardboard, mobile phones, and "traditional" 3D experiences in the browser. We'll have a quick overview of VR, discuss challenges that lie ahead, look at current best practices, and of course, demos and examples galore.

Appearances

Session WebVR 101
Terrance Smith

Terrance Smith

Hacker Ferret Software @musicm122

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-Terrance Smith is a Software Consultant at Hacker Ferret Software. In addition to being a software developer who has worked in the web most of his professional career, he is a father, musician, gamer, veteran and all around nerd (and darn proud). When not he's not busy with his daughter or at work, you can find him programming in the shiniest looking thing holding his attention at the moment blogging at musicm122.blogspot.com, posting on Google Plus or lurking on Stackoverflow.

Javascript All the Things

Javascript, in all its glory, is a requirement for the web but did you know all the other neat stuff you can do with it? Terrance will show you how to repurpose all those 1337 js coding skills for other platforms. Specifically, he'll touch on: Javascript on your Web Server with node.js; Javscript on your Windows, Mac and Linux desktop with Node and Electron; Javascript on your phone with ionic; and Javascript on Rasberry pi and other devices

Appearances

Session Javascript All the Things
Brad Weaver

Brad Weaver

Nine Labs @sbradweaver

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Brad Weaver is a Partner & Director of Design at Nine Labs. He designs, he codes, he writes, he UXs, he slices and dices.

Brad went to school to be a lawyer, then he came to his senses and has spent the last 15 years as a UX generalist with a geek's heart of gold. His experience includes product development, interactive, branding, and market segmentation. He's been the big cheese, the plebeian, the middle manager, and the class clown. He's also folded clothes, pumped gas, bagged groceries, sold cell phones, and climbed the Great Wall of China. He likes beer, scotch, Oxford commas, and Jesus, but not in that order. He's worked with clients including MTV, Verizon, Bank of America, AT&T, ESPN, Disney, Columbia Records, NATO, SunTrust, The PGA, Olive Garden, Coca-Cola, Big Brothers Big Sisters, United Health Group, The Home Depot, Chick-fil-A, Macy’s, Hard Rock Café, and more. His upcoming book from Focal Press, "Creative Truth", releases this fall.

He lives in Atlanta, ya’ll.

Cinematic UX

The process behind making a blockbuster film is similar to creating a meaningful website or app. Through the lens of cinema, we’ll walk through practical ways that UX design teams can work together to deliver an award-winning final product. Whether you’re making a low-budget indie for a non-profit or the next summer smash for a Fortune 500, we can learn a thing or two from film.

We’ll take two approaches: (1) a deep look at the filmmaking process and the lessons learned from over a century of refining roles and (2) the challenged wrought by the independent and digital film revolution and its similarities to the commoditization of modern web and application design.

Appearances

Session Cinematic UX Workshop Creative Truth: Start & Build a Profitable Design Business
Bermon Painter

Bermon Painter

Cardinal @bermonpainter

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A rootbeer drinking, cupcake eating, Spanish speaking, piano playing, handlebar mustache wearing designer/developer hybrid living in the glorious city of Charlotte, NC.

Bermon is the organizer of various community groups for user experience designers and front-end developers, and the organizer of Blend Conference, a 3-day multi-track event for user experience strategists, designers and developers. He also leads the user experience team for Cardinal Solutions’ Charlotte office where he consults with large enterprise clients on interesting problems across user experience, design and front-end development.

In his free time he contributes to http://sass-lang.com/ and is the father of the Sass logo

Appearances

Workshop Product Design + UX Methodologies Emcee Frontend Track
Todd Shelton

Todd Shelton

Pluralsight Author & Freelancer @tweenout

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Todd Shelton is a Pluralsight author as well as owner of Dev Workshop. He lectures in the Media Arts and Science Department at Indiana University in Indianapolis, Indiana. Todd works as a freelance Front-End Web Developer making mobile/web applications using any tools, libraries or other technology to get the job done.

Todd currently runs Dev Workshop, which host local training workshops on all new web development technologies.

JavaScript Animation

Tired of using JQuery animations? Want to learn something new and refreshing? If so, this presentation is for you. GSAP or GreenSock Animation Platform has taken web animation to the next level, and it is even great in mobile applications. GSAP offers unsurpassed performance and has recently been a big part of the animation in AngularJS. This session will show you how to use some of the key features in GSAP.

Appearances

Session JavaScript Animation
Andrew Norcross

Andrew Norcross

Reaktiv Studios @norcross

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Andrew Norcross is the founder and Lead Product Developer for Reaktiv Studios. If he isn’t writing code at the moment, he’s probably thinking about writing some. Or having a cup of coffee.

Before WordPress, Andrew (simply “Norcross” to many) had a 10-year career in the finance industry handling tasks like accounting, pricing data analysis, or corporate action processing, and was even a Series 7-licensed Fiduciary Asset Manager. During the US financial market implosion in 2008, he left finance for good to turn his WordPress development hobby into a career. He founded Reaktiv Studios shortly thereafter and hasn’t looked back.

As an organizer for WordCamp Tampa, Norcross loves to keep giving back to the WordPress community with free plugins, education talks at conferences, and core contributions to WordPress. Norcross lives in Tampa, Florida with his amazing wife, three kids, and rescue dogs that believe they’re humans.

Zen and the Art of Software Maintenance

Developers love building new things. The excitement, however, seems to wane once the project is done and out in the wild. Fighting the urge to move on to the Next Great Thing (tm), this talk will cover all aspects of maintaining a project. Starting with the initial project setup, then moving into the issues surrounding ongoing work, refactoring, balancing feature requests and keeping clean, releasing updates, and new developers joining (or leaving) the project.

Appearances

Session Zen and the Art of Software Maintenance
Moses Ngone

Moses Ngone

Brck @mospired

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Has an Arsenal FC bias. Does a lot with hypertext, mostly @brcknet

From Node n00b to not so Node n00b

Appearances

Session From Node n00b to not so Node n00b
Meena Kothandaraman

Meena Kothandaraman

twig + fish @meena_ko

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With 25 years of experience, Meena Kothandaraman has consulted to emphasize the strategic value of customer experience across product, space and service. She truly believes that businesses can achieve greater focus by better understanding the behaviors of their customers, as well as those who create the products from within the business. She is passionate about studying customer realities and aspirations. Meena believes that the journey of conducting research acts as inspiration to the business both internally and externally.

Meena is part of twig+fish, a research and strategy practice based in Boston, MA, that espouses these research beliefs, while maintaining a utopic work-life balance. Apart from her core consulting practice, Meena has been a key contributor to the Bentley University Human Factors and Information Design (HFID) graduate program in her 15 year tenure. She has helped evolve the course offerings to stand as one of the top human factors/user experience programs worldwide. She holds an M.S. in Information Resources Management from Syracuse University and a B.Com. in MIS from the University of Ottawa, Canada. Meena definitely speaks Canadian, among other languages!

Keeping it Human

From three industry leaders in software development, marketing mentorship and user experience - an open discussion on the meaning of "keeping it human" and how it is implemented in projects across these verticals. The presenters are all keenly attuned to the importance of embracing the human element in each of their verticals, but what does it really mean? What are examples and ways to bypass or possibly go through challenges? The presenters will share perspectives, pet-peeves, and solutions. We invite our audience members to listen to our quick reviews of what it means in our respective fields to focus on the human element, and how we have implemented our beliefs in projects we do. We will then have sufficient time left over for Q&A from audience members, where they will be delighted with a three-fer - ask one question - and get three perspectives!

We hope to generate a lively discussion and get everyone's creative juices flowing. Our goal is that everyone leaves our presentation with a heightened appreciation for the human element - and how it can be given more focus in their own work (and personal!) lives.

Appearances

Co-Session Keeping it Human
Ilise Benun

Ilise Benun

marketing-mentor.com @meena_ko

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Ilise Benun is an author, business coach, national speaker, the founder of Marketing-Mentor.com and the Program Partner of HOW Design Live’s Creative Entrepreneur program.

She has been coaching designers and other creatives for 20+ years and is the author of 7 books, including The Creative Professional’s Guide to Money, The Designer’s Guide to Marketing and Pricing and Stop Pushing Me Around: A Workplace Guide for the Timid, Shy and Less Assertive. She edits 2 blogs, The Creative Freelancer Blog and The MarketingMixBlog, and hosts 2 podcasts, The Marketing Mentor Podcast and the HOWLive Podcast. Her online courses can be found through HOW Design University and CreativeLive.

Keeping it Human

From three industry leaders in software development, marketing mentorship and user experience - an open discussion on the meaning of "keeping it human" and how it is implemented in projects across these verticals. The presenters are all keenly attuned to the importance of embracing the human element in each of their verticals, but what does it really mean? What are examples and ways to bypass or possibly go through challenges? The presenters will share perspectives, pet-peeves, and solutions. We invite our audience members to listen to our quick reviews of what it means in our respective fields to focus on the human element, and how we have implemented our beliefs in projects we do. We will then have sufficient time left over for Q&A from audience members, where they will be delighted with a three-fer - ask one question - and get three perspectives!

We hope to generate a lively discussion and get everyone's creative juices flowing. Our goal is that everyone leaves our presentation with a heightened appreciation for the human element - and how it can be given more focus in their own work (and personal!) lives.

Appearances

Co-Session Keeping it Human
Kurt Elster

Kurt Elster

kurtelster.com

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Kurt Elster, MBA is a Senior Ecommerce Consultant who helps Shopify store owners uncover hidden profits in their websites. He's also an Agency Owner, Podcast Host, Author, and Speaker. You can learn more and subscribe to Kurt's free newsletter at kurtelster.com

Building a Business for The Life You Want: How I 8x'd my Business By Niching Down

Kurt is the founder of ecommerce agency Ethercycle and helps Shopify store owners earn more money (and work fewer hours.)

Kurt is the author of Ecommerce Bootcamp, a book on marketing your Shopify store. His free podcast, The Unofficial Shopify Podcast, has helped thousands of entrepreneurs make the leap to self-employment while growing their stores.

Appearances

Session Building a Business for The Life You Want: How I 8x'd my Business By Niching Down
Chris Vasquez

Chris Vasquez

AWeber @clickpop

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KChris Vasquez is the creative director at AWeber. He spent the past decade(ish) building products to help brands make, test, and share videos online. Now he spends his time experimenting with the intricacies and peculiarities of the email experience. Chris also maintains an active business helping companies understand how to authentically participate in the YouTube community.

While not working, he can be found Instagramming his two precious dogs or obsessing over Codepen into the wee hours of the morning.

The Joy of Ad Hoc Projects

With the firehose of new technologies and mediums popping up everyday there's a tendency to try and make more and more creative work fit into tighter and tighter processes just to keep our heads above water. While process can be good and necessary to make sure that we're actually making forward progress, it can also kill opportunities for experimentation and serendipity.

Ad hoc projects not only allow us the opportunity to flex our creative skills, but they can sometimes expose blind-spots in our institutional common-sense that are keeping our teams from solving the real creative and customer problems we're faced with.

We'll spend some time walking through a few projects that show the power of off-the-record projects to change customers's perceptions and even lead to new product development. We'll conclude by sharing some thoughts on what is required of an organization to facilitate this kind of self-organization and initiative. Namely, putting structures in place to encourage teams to organically collaborate, providing tools to help in testing assumptions and filling gaps in skill sets, and then giving them the freedom, trust, and support to launch projects and products.

Appearances

Session The Joy of Ad Hoc Projects
Sarah Auvil

Sarah Auvil

Cardinal Solutions

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Sarah Auvil is a senior UX architect at Cardinal Solutions in Charlotte and holds a bachelor of science in digital information design from Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. Always interested in making websites since the days coding online journals layouts and designing icons for them were cool, her career changed upon meeting a seasoned interaction designer and usability consultant who introduced her to testing, information architecture and human computer interaction. From that day on, what makes digital interfaces succeed, delight or fail became an obsession.

In the course of her career, Sarah has dabbled in SEO and analytics, journalism, copywriting and content strategy, usability engineering, information architecture, interaction and user interface design. She primarily works on UX strategy for Cardinal’s clients, identifying their experience problems and developing practical solutions for software applications and responsive websites. She enjoys speaking at the local Charlotte UX meetups and giving technical presentations in a fun, approachable manner. Sarah is also passionate about photography, travel, art, personal finance and anime.

Appearances

Workshop Product Design + UX Methodologies
Ramya Mahalingam

Ramya Mahalingam

Cardinal Solutions

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Ramya is a UX designer with a background in Industrial Design and Mechanical engineering. Originally from Dubai, UAE, she moved to the States to go to school at Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence. After four terrible winters, she landed in Charlotte, and is currently UX-ing it up at Cardinal Solutions.

One of Ramya’s passions is storytelling in design. She runs a storytelling group and a podcast called “The Charlotte Storytellers Podcast”. She believes that the human experience is thriving, chaotic, messy, and weird. Designing for it will never be perfect, but will always be fun.

Appearances

Workshop Product Design + UX Methodologies
Scott Padgett

Dr. Scott Padgett

Musical Stylings @antiboniver

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Dr. Scott Padgett is a music writer, producer & archivist dating back to his college days as a program director at WUSC radio in Columbia, SC. He followed that with radio programming & production work in the new frontier of the 'FM underground'.

A stint as music editor at the southeast's pioneering alternative newsweekly Osceola Magazine led to becoming the first music writer/columnist at Free Times Magazine. His work appeared in Billboard, the Village Voice, Rolling Stone and practcally every other regional art/political outlet extant through the early nineties.

After a stint in radio in Los Angeles & later at Warner Brothers Studios, he returned to the south where he and co-conspirator Steve Gibson vowed to bring live spectrum-spanning music to the masses. Thus was born the legendary Rockafellas music venue and artist management company.

Working through Ian Copeland's legendary musical talent booking firm FBI, the likes of Soundgarden, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Smashing Pumpkins, et. al. were initially exposed to club venues all over the U.S.

He is a contributor and social media monitor for semi-important e-music rags as well as several fly-by-night blogs and has a music industry specific twitter account @AntiBonIver which draws on a digest of 104 music news outlets for content.

Dr. Padgett is our Musical Stylist, spinning his DJ'ness from 9-noon each day!