Carl Smith

Carl Smith

Bureau Of Digital
@carlsmith

A theater major who decided to act like he understood business, Carl spent 14 years in advertising before launching his digital agency, nGen Works, in 2003.

nGen ran for 12 years, constantly experimenting with different models of management and team structure, including the Jellyfish Model which was flat before flat was cool.

Towards the end of nGen’s run, Carl attended the very first Bureau event and fell madly in love with the concept of building community in the web industry. So much so that a few years later he closed nGen to take over the Bureau in 2016. Now Carl spends every day connecting digital professionals to give them the support they need.

Sam Kapila

Sam Kapila

The Iron Yard
@samkap

Sam Kapila is a designer from the Dutch island of Curaçao, who lives in Austin, TX. She taught design at Texas State and has been recognized by Good50x70, Poster4Tomorrow, CMYK Magazine, Art Director’s Club of Houston, and the American Advertising Federation.

Megan Zlock

Megan Zlock

Viget
@meganzlock

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

Tera Simon

Tera Simon

Atlantic BT
@tcaldsimon

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.

Anna Stout

Anna Stout

Astute Communications
@astute_anna

Anna is the owner of Astute Communications, a full-service marketing agency specializing in Custom Website Design and Search Engine Optimization. An active participant in the technology community, you can find her attending tech conferences, serving on the board and as a mentor for WomenGetIT, or taking the stage as a nationally recognized speaker. Anna has spoken at various web design industry conferences, and for both the Nashville Global Chamber and the Williamson County Chamber of Commerce’s Women in Business Luncheon. Her 5-step process for planning a website was recently published as the cover feature in Net Magazine.

A mother of two, successful business owner and proud “Woman in Tech,” Anna is dedicated to empowering women in technology through ongoing educational opportunities and one-on-one mentoring.

Ben Callahan

Ben Callahan

Sparkbox
@bencallahan

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.

Building a Human-Centered Culture

Most of us have learned the hard way that technical projects don’t fail for technical reasons. Politics, egos, misunderstandings ... working with people is a messy business. And yet, every experience we create alongside our human clients is intended to make life a little better for a human user.

So how do we create an environment where our people can work alongside other people to create exceptional experiences for the people: our users? In this session, Ben will talk about how to holistically develop the people you work with, leading to better retention, better work, and happier teammates and clients.

Bermon Painter

Bermon Painter

Cardinal Solutions
@bermonpainter

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

CSS: Preprocessing, Postprocessing, and Transpiling

Our industry moves quickly and how we do things never remains constant. It’s important for things always to progress and improve and CSS is no exception. CSS introduced the level 1 spec in 1996, the level 2 spec in 1998, the level 2.1 spec in 2011, and the level 3 spec in 2011. Since then the W3C has taken a more modular approach in releasing new features under the CSS3 spec with level 4 modules. CSS has been and remains to be relatively straightforward, but as the work that we do becomes more complicated, we need more robust features. Preprocessors like Sass, Less, and Stylus were introduced to give us more control and approach how we write CSS with a more modular approach. Their success has profoundly influenced the direction of CSS, and new modules are being introduced and adopted by browsers. Unfortunately, we can’t use some of these features without a little bit of help. That’s just what we’ll discuss in this session.

Objective:vGive you a good overview of the state of the future of CSS, how things work, what tools can help us use newer CSS modules, and how to tackle typical modern interface implementation.

Five Things Audience Members Will Learn:

  • New CSS Level 4 Modules
  • Using Sass
  • Using PostCSS
  • Mixing Sass with PostCSS
  • Mixing PostCSS with CSSNext
J Cornelius

J Cornelius

Nine Labs
@jc

J Cornelius is the President of Nine Labs, an experience and strategy consultancy based in Atlanta GA. His work focuses on computer/human interaction, user experience, application strategy, technical systems implementation, and process analysis. He served as VP of Operations at CoffeeCup Software for 14 years where he helped steer the company from startup to multi-national, is President of the Atlanta Web Design Group, founded the Web Afternoon conference series, lectures at the University of Georgia’s Terry School of Business, and has lectured on topics from software development methodologies to the psychology of customer experience to groups of all sizes at events across the country.

He has also worked on technical projects with companies like Mattel, Pantone, and General Electric; served as a mentor at the Advanced Technology Development Center at Georgia Tech, an advisor to the computer science department at Texas A&M University; and as a private consultant to numerous other enterprises and organizations.

Design Thinking is Bullshit

Jed Schneider

Jed Schneider

fuelixir.com
@jedschneider

Through a series of fortunate twists and turns, Jed has had the opportunity to work with functional programming for over 10 years, much of it targeting front end development. In former lives he has been: a professional cyclist, geographer, ski/snowboard instructor, barista, and coffee wholesaler. He lives in Las Vegas, Nevada with his wife and two children and is the Director of Engineering for both fuelixir.com, and accessmobileinc.com. In his ‘spare time’ he mentors through a number of Slack communities and coding bootcamps, including The Iron Yard, and turing.io. He also contributes to pusher.com as a guest writer. You can find him on most social networks as @jedschneider, but prefers a good phone conversation.

Borrowing from Math Class

How principles of functional programming are informing product development

Functional Programming is one of the oldest programming paradigms, but even five years ago it was still considered a niche discipline, but in the last several years it has gained much momentum in all areas of software development. In front end application development, libraries like lodash, React and Redux have driven a strong adoption among JavaScript developers. However, it is not just development that is being fundamentally changed as a result of ‘functional thinking’. Product development is also undergoing a shift in focus and execution as we begin to think in terms of functional principles. What happens when we start thinking in terms of functional principles, and how does it inform product decisions?

Matt Griffin

Matt Griffin

Bearded
@elefontpress

Matt Griffin is a designer and founder of Bearded. He is a speaker, writer, and an avid advocate for collaboration in design. His writing has been published by net magazine and A List Apart, where he is [a regular contributor.

As if that weren't enough, Matt is also the director of the documentary film What Comes Next Is the Future.

Nic Rosental

Nic Rosental

Epic Labs
@nicdev

Nic is a full stack web developer based in Atlanta. He currently works as a consultant for Tin Roof Software, after running his own web shop, Epic Labs, for several years. Nic is an active member of the Atlanta web community. He acted as a co-organizer of AtlantaPHP for three years, and is a regular speaker at local conferences and meet-ups.

Building Apps for Slack

Slack has become incredibly popular, and it provides a new way for developers to build applications and services. There is a lot of interest in creating for this platform, but there’s more to it than just code. The whole process from research to publishing and distribution will be covered in this session.

Rob Harr

Rob Harr

Sparkbox
@twitter

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.

Putting humans back into business

We have all heard the saying, “It’s not personal; it’s just business.” Many business owners do their best to pretend they can ignore the feelings of the humans involved if the decision is made in the best interest of the business. However, for most employees, these clearly defined lines just don't exist—it all feels personal.

I believe there is a better way. You can’t ignore business fundamentals, but it is equally unwise to ignore the humans in your business. Those humans are what make your business work. During this session, we will explore some simple but fundamental mind shifts that will allow both your business and your humans to thrive.

Topics Covered:

  • Employee vs employer perspective on compensation, time off, and other things
  • Handling the challenges of running a services company sustainably while sleeping at night
  • Caring for the humans and running a profitable business at the same time

This Session Is for You If:

  • You own a service company or manage a service team
  • You want a healthy perspective on the relationship between employees and employers
  • You have any desire to run your own company someday
  • You are an employee that wants to help make change toward a more human centered approach to business.
Ryan Cromwell

Ryan Cromwell

Sparkbox
@cromwellryan

Ryan Cromwell is the Technical Director at Sparkbox with more nearly 15 years of experience delivering solutions ranging from real-time customer loyalty systems and elegant user experiences to streamlined statistical process control software. Ryan’s passion is anchored in delivering software others enjoy using. He has also established himself as a strong software community ally.

Catherine Meade

Catherine Meade

Sparkbox
@catheraaine

Catherine builds responsive websites up and down the stack with technologies like CSS, Sass, JS, React, Craft CMS, PHP, Node, and more. She has a B.S.A. from Miami University in Art Education. While Catherine no longer teaches high school, her strong passion for education has never left; she spends a good amount of time volunteering with Girl Develop It Dayton, sitting on the leadership team and teaching code classes. Her other hobbies include reading, video games, tabletop games, drawing, and making cat jokes. Twitter (and all the other things) as @catheraaine.

Philip Zastrow

Philip Zastrow

Sparkbox
@zastrow

Harboring a powerful need to push pixels and punch code, Philip is a designer and developer who needs a healthy mixture of both. At Sparkbox, Philip’s title may be Frontend Designer, but around the office, he is known as the Sassmaster. That term isn’t because of sarcastic wit; rather, it’s for Philip’s depth of knowledge and love for all things CSS. Philip loves tinkering with new concepts and discovering unique solutions, all while dancing at his standing desk.

Amber Stickel

Amber Stickel

IBM Design
@amberstickel

Amber is a multidisciplinary designer and front-end developer living in Austin, TX. She currently works at IBM Design where she works at the intersection of design and code. She is most passionate about front-end architecture and modular design. When she's not at her computer, she can be found exploring her new home city, drinking coffee, and talking about her cats.

Everything is a prototype

"Everything is a prototype" is something you will commonly hear throughout IBM Design studios. But what exactly does that mean for small teams and tight deadlines? A common misconception is that prototyping can eat into your final delivery, costing your team valuable time and resources. In fact, it’s the complete opposite. Rapid and iterative design generates quality feedback early and often, all while validating design decisions and shortening the path to final delivery along the way.

In this talk, we will explore the practice and principles behind prototyping for rapid and iterative design, and how using these principals promote team collaboration, shorten delivery, and ultimately lead to a better, more informed design.

Cian O'Connor

Cian O'Connor

truematter
@truematter

Cian O'Connor is a user experience consultant at truematter, where his specialty is taming complexity.

Cian helps design anything that needs to work for users on a screen, including web apps, online billing systems, pharmacy software, emergency consoles, and even airport security systems. He’s worked with national and regional clients including Disney, Citirix, UBS investment bank, Sussex University, Regency Centers, QS/1, SCANA, Lexington Medical Center, and Avtec.

Cian has a degree in computer science from Cambridge University, and a Masters in HCI (Human Computer Interaction) from Sussex University. He is a member of ACM (the Association of Computer Machinery) and SIGCHI (Special Interest Group on Computer-Human Interaction).

The Science Behind Great User Interfaces

Need to improve your products’ UX, but don't know how? Learn 6 simple UX laws that can radically improve your websites, apps, and software. Thrill and swoon as you learn how to make your users click the red button using millions of years of evolution.

WARNING: User experience enlightenment may be dangerous to your competitors.

* 1 math equation will be shown on screen for 12 seconds. You’ve been warned.

Ramya Mahalingam

Ramya Mahalingam

Cardinal Solutions
@rams_mahalingam

Ramya is a UX Architect at Cardinal Solutions with a background in physical product design. She is also the Co-founder and Creative Director of Charlotte Storytellers. She likes designing for the human experience because it’s chaotic, messy, and weird. She also believes that puns are basically the best thing ever.

The Power of Personas

Personas are used across a wide variety of design specialties, from UX to Information Design to Industrial Design. They’re often a key deliverable of the discovery phase of most projects, and are used to inspire empathy in the minds of the people who will be designing for them.

But after the discovery phase, the personas often die. And they die without ceremony. No tears are shed, there’s no funeral; it’s rare that there's even an acknowledgement of their passing.

For a tool that’s meant to create empathy, does this seem particularly non-empathic?

This talk will explore the shortcomings of personas as they are currently used and leave you with a framework to rebuild your personas to better serve their purpose. Ramya promises that this description is as morbid as it will get.

Adam Simpson

Adam Simpson

Sparkbox
@a_simpson

I do Fake Computer Science™ at @hearsparkbox. I tweet about the NBA before Christmas. I recognize cookies as currency. I love my wife, Christi.

Stefanie Young

Stefanie Young

Grok Interactive
@Ninzaburoz

Frontend developer at Grok Interactive, focusing on responsive design and CMS templating. I work first-hand with our clients and their users to create fantastic UI/UX through interactive and responsive designs. I have come to teach and speak on the subject of responsive design monthly at local venues and coding schools. I have a serious passion for user experiences and the ability to access products and information via mobile devices. I love educating business owners on responsive design's importance and it's ability to help profit, user retention and SEO.

Cut down the work in making websites responsive for mobile

Through CSS, Flexbox and SASS, there are many techniques to cut down the amount of work needed to make a website responsive for mobile. We’ll talk about measurement options outside of the pixel, SEO, using min and max widths to cut down on media queries and discuss using vectors and images well.

This talk is great for those who are just starting to learn CSS or web design, but still helpful to those who have been creating sites for a few years. I try to not push too far into the depth of CSS with this talk but push the audience to think more about their user and their experience across multiple devices.

Dan Denney

Dan Denney

PluralSight
@dandenney

I'm a seriously good copy and paster. UI Engineer for @pluralsight, working on @codeschool. Founder of @frontendconf, but now a glorified attendee.

Unmasking HTML Emails

Explore the nuances of email clients and how to build designs for them with inline styles, tables for layout, and conditional comments.

Danny Outlaw

Danny Outlaw

The Home Depot
@dannyoutlaw

I dropped out of college to become a raft guide and somehow ended up as a UX designer. I freelanced successfully for about 10 years before moving over to the corporate world. Currently I am a lead designer at The Home Depot

Back to the Future: How to Create Concepts that Inspire Change

This talk will help you to understand the appropriate vison for your concept, how to present your concept, and exercises to help you create and present your concept.

Tim Smith

Tim Smith

The Bold Report
@smithtimmytim

Tim Smith is a designer and frontend developer from Saint Paul, MN. He’s worked on the web for a decade, working with different companies and clients. Tim writes The Bold Report, a blog about design, development, technology, and most importantly, Star Wars. When away from his desk, he spends time with his amazing wife Kelly, eating brunch, watching movies, walking the mall, and other sappy-sounding couple stuff.

CSS on Large Teams

Here's what the talk would cover:

  • How do you pick a system for organizing CSS
  • What can you do to improve the CSS you and your team writes?
  • Why does it matter to write better CSS?
  • How do you approach refactoring CSS in a large codebase?
  • Is my organization the only one that struggles with this?
Nicole Cendrowski

Nicole Cendrowski

Fireforge Crafted Beer
@admiralniko

Nicole Cendrowski is passionate about creating a unique and seamless client journey through the marketing, sales and client relationship experience.

By day, Nicole is the Director of Engagement for A-LINE Interactive, a work-hard, play-hard web development and marketing firm that works with fun companies and non-profit organizations across Upstate South Carolina and Western North Carolina.

By night, she is the co-founder of Fireforge Crafted Beer Company, a brewery-in-planning in Greenville, SC. Fireforge exists to give people a place that ignites their spirit of adventure and exploration.

Playing with Fire

Is your business feeling more like work, or more like play? What you think you should be doing for your company may be very different from what your body is feeling about it. When stripped of what numbs feeling, the body is a powerful compass. Learning to read it can brew up energy, creativity, fun – and healing – the perfect kindling for your next adventure.

Robby Berthume

Robby Berthume

Bull & Beard
@robbyberthume

Digital and advertising maven, mentor, motivator and matchmaker for ad agencies, brands and start-ups with over 15 years of experience.

Co-founder and CEO of Bull & Beard (www.bullandbeard.com) and Co-founder of Skippaz (www.skippaz.com). Writer, speaker, consultant, coach and strategist.

Brooke Creef

Brooke Creef

The Home Depot
@brookecreef

I am a lead product designer for The Home Depot’s Interconnected Retail team. My focus is on the full product life cycle from beginning ideas to launch. Specifically, I lead teams in Design Sprint workshops. The methodology is a mix of the agile framework and design thinking. Design Sprints answer critical business questions up-front to reduce risk.

In my past consulting life, I worked with clients such as Coca-Cola, UPS, State Farm, Cox Communications, The Home Depot, AT&T, and The Weather Channel.

Design Sprints at the Home Depot.

Dean Schuster

Dean Schuster

truematter
@experiencedean

Founder and partner of truematter, an interactive usability consultancy, Dean has championed online simplicity and clarity since the early days of the Web. He oversees truematter's user experience practice leading strategic engagements for innovative regional firms as well as the Fortune 100.

Stop Doing What You Know Doesn’t Work

So here we are: Makers of digital products, a mighty group of experts. We, the paragons of strategy, UX, design, and content. We make the world a better place for people who use websites, mobile apps, and software. Yay us!

But what if we’re only ostensibly amazing? If we’re so talented, why do we constantly repeat the same bush league blunders? Why do we casually make strategic project mistakes, gross usability errors, and unforgivably bad content decisions? We toss best practices aside, pay only lip service to users, and sweet fancy Moses, how we let our clients pilot the ship.

I have an idea. Stop it. Right now.

Stop it for the sake of your craft and your sanity.

Bob Visser

Bob Visser

CoffeeCup Software
@coffeecup

Budgets, plans, numbers, product specing, financials, content creation, accrual accounting, AARGH.. That's just a crazy pizza combination of all ingredients! Luckily for us, Bob loves making software and writing and web design and people and accounting. Seems like a match made in heaven. Bob used to craft plans and crunch numbers for people like Heineken, L’Oreal, and some giant German bank. And when plans come together there's nobody that says EBITDA with more enthusiasm.

CSS Grid

Intro to CSS Grid and technical overview, then focussing on practical use cases and examples and combination with flexbox.

Joni Halabi

Joni Halabi

Georgetown University
@jonihalabi

Both a New Jersey native and a former Bostonian, Joni Halabi is a senior Javascript front-end web developer for Georgetown University in Washington DC. She specializes developing CMS themes and Javascript applications, and has spent the last 15 years building solutions for e-commerce corporations, non-profit organizations, and technology companies. Joni has a BS in Computer Science and Electronic Media and a MFA in Electronic Arts, both from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. When she is not geeking out over code, you can find Joni running or baking (post-run) cookies.

Accessible Web Development

We develop websites for everyone to use, so why not make sure that everyone is able to use our sites? We as developers need to plan for accessibility before we write our first line of code. This session will use lessons learned from Georgetown University's current website redesign to demonstrate front-end architecture and code that solves common accessibility concerns.

Tim Whitacre

Tim Whitacer

The Iron Yard
@timwco

Work @TheIronYard, write code, listen to Swedish adventure metal, and drink whisky - mostly in that order.

Introduction to Elm

Elm is a functional language that compiles to HTML & JavaScript and is growing in popularity. With it’s ability to be dropped into even the largest JavaScript application, it’s something that I think we’ll see more and more of over the coming years.

Ayumi Fukuda Bennett

Ayumi Fukuda Bennett

Startup Southerner
@ayumibennett

Ayumi is the founder of Startup Southerner, a digital publication on a mission to inform, include and empower the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Southeast.

Born in Japan and raised in the southern Appalachian Mountains, Ayumi first became interested in storytelling by way of editorial cartooning for Vanderbilt University's student paper. A 2015 graduate of Nashville Software School, she also spends time as a developer and UX strategist. Ayumi is glad to be in an industry that brings together newly acquired tech knowledge with her love of visual solutions.

Aaron Moller

Aaron Moller

Keymark
@aaronmoller

Aaron Moller is a Product Manager at KeyMark, Inc., focused on developing and positioning our products in the market.

Developing with Microservices

We will dig into the pros/cons of using microservice architecture for your apps, along with utilizing microservices for specific features inside your existing applications.

Scott Padgett

Scott Padgett

Sic Tunes
@antiboniver