Resources

The following resources are design-oriented talks from WordCamps. If you have a video or other resource you’d like to suggest, please let us know in #design.

User Research and Testing User Research and Testing

User research focuses on understanding user behaviors, needs, and motivations through observation techniques, task analysis, and other feedback methodologies.1


Lily Dart: Guerilla Usability Testing
June 1, 2015 — Guerrilla usability testing is an inexpensive and speedy way to put users at the centre of your design process. It can help to keep clients focused on strategic goals, over personal their colour preferences. Lily shows you how to design and run a guerrilla usability testing session to get valuable feedback from people on the street.


Sarah Ovenall: DIY User Testing
August 17, 2016 — Whether you’re redesigning an existing site or starting from scratch, content that puts the user first leads to happier users and better return on investment. User testing helps you understand your users and structure your content for them. It doesn’t require a large team or expensive resources. You can do it yourself, and WordPress makes it easier. We’ll cover card sorting, tree testing, prototype testing, understanding the data you collect and using it to design your content. Take aways:

  • How a small team or individual can run effective user tests.
  • How WordPress makes user testing easier.
  • How to interpret user data to build a user-focused site.


Tammie Lister: Know Your Users
June 6, 2017 — Tammie explains how can you truly create an experience without knowing who you are creating it for? Why does so much get made without user research? Why do so many creating experiences not run user tests or engage with their users at any point? It isn’t a privilege of the wealthy agency or invested company. In this talk, she shows why knowing your user’s matters and how you can start truly understanding them to make a better experience.


Dana Salman: How to Create a Website That Doesn’t Suck (Using SMART Objectives, Personas and Wireframes)
September 20, 2015 — Set S.M.A.R.T Objectives for your personal or business WordPress site Creating personas to represent your target and existing customers Researching competitors and samples and creating a swipe file Sketching a wireframe Creating a wireframe using online tools. Prerequisites: A clear idea of what you are trying to achieve and for whom. Both advanced developers and beginning bloggers can benefit from setting an effective website strategy to make sure their website achieves the intended objectives.


Davide Casali: Design with Personas – A Lean Approach
June 1, 2015 — Personas are a form of synthesis and as such they lead as much value as much we can embed them in the existing discussions, design and development. In this talk we see how personas can be built in a lean approach, how to make them visible, and how they can be used in various stages of a product evolution. We are also going to see a real case scenario: the WordPress.com personas work, currently in progress.


Luca Sartoni: A/B Testing and Usability Testing on WordPress
September 27, 2015 — A/B testing can dramatically improve the performances of our online businesses. No matter if you are running an E-Commerce, a publishing site or a personal blog, these tools definitely help our decision making. There are many ways to perform A/B tests, but only a few ways to do them right. My presentation will explore the basics of A/B testing on WordPress, going through the available online tools, the common mistakes and the right procedures.

Top ↑

Visual and Interface Design Visual and Interface Design

Visual design focuses on the aesthetics of a site and its related materials by strategically implementing images, colors, fonts, and other elements.2 User Interface (UI) Design focuses on anticipating what users might need to do and ensuring that the interface has elements that are easy to access, understand, and use to facilitate those actions.3


Beth Soderberg: Color Theory and the Fundamentals of Design
December 23, 2016 — One of a series of flash talks


Hugo Baeta Tint, Tone & Shade
December 3, 2016 — Lightning talk on Color Theory and the Fundamentals of Design


Sonja Leix: Designing Without Color
December 13, 2016 — Removing color from design in the early stages of a project fosters better conversations and creates truly effective experiences for users.


David Hickox: Designing for Content
September 5, 2014 — This talk goes over the method I’ve created for designing websites from the content outward. I’ll cover aspects of designing in code, type choices, line height and typographic scale, creating a proper base style sheet for your child theme, usability best practices, semantic structure, and more. Since the web is fundamentally a text-based, utilitarian medium, making good type choices is the most important aspect of web design. In this presentation, I’ll walk you through the things I’ve learned in my 15 years designing for the web.


Michelle Schulp: Beyond Whitespace – Designing for Complex Content
July 11, 2016 — We’re all enamored with the minimalist websites that employ only the most essential use of color, images, and space. But what happens when the volume of information can’t be boiled down to something that simple? We’ll explore how to use design principles to organize and display elaborate user experiences like mega-menus, massive news sites, high-information catalog pages, and multi-level interactions.


Karalyn Thayer: Introduction to Wireframing
August 14, 2016 — Wireframing is an important first step in creating a website. From creating a napkin sketch to brainstorm ideas, to communicating quickly and effectively with other team members and clients, wireframes are at the foundation of creating a good user experience. This presentation will be an introduction and overview of wireframing. Where we will go over the following topics:

  • What are wireframes and the different types
  • When to use each type of wireframe
  • How wireframes can help you communicate effectively with clients
  • The tools used (free and paid) to create wireframes

Top ↑

Accessibility Accessibility

Accessibility focuses on how a disabled person accesses or benefits from a site, system or application. Accessibility is an important part of the designing your site and should be considered throughout the development process.4


Graham Armfield: Designing for Accessibility
May 30, 2017 — The accessibility of a website is significantly affected by the underlying HTML, CSS and javascript that developers use to create it. But it is also possible to impact upon the accessibility of a site at the design stage – both the visual design, and the interactive design or UX. And it’s not just about colour schemes either.

In this presentation I will outline a few key points to keep in mind when you are designing your next beautiful website or theme. I will illustrate the points with some good (and bad) examples. Good design and web accessibility can go hand in hand – come and find out how.


Rian Rietveld: Accessibility In The Age Of The Headless CMS
June 22, 2017 — With the REST API now in WordPress core the sky is the limit. The way we developers work will change: how we build themes, how we interact with the database, how we setup plugins. This will effect the way users experience a website. What about accessibility? How to make dynamic and Javascript driven content available for everyone? Let me give you an overview of the pitfalls and give you workarounds and some possible solutions. This talk will be for developers and will include screen reader demos and code examples.

Top ↑

Design and Inclusion Design and Inclusion

Inclusive design at its heart is a way of creating products and services that attempt to reach the broadest range of people possible, particularly those in underserved communities.5


Marc Coleman: Diversity And The Design Team
December 11, 2016 — The products we build as designers often have to reach a variety of audiences. Some of best collaborations have benefited from diverse perspectives and a unified effort. How do we create teams that value open participation by employees with different perspectives and personalities? This talk will look at empathy, intersectionality and other concepts as the relate to building and maintaining strong teams.


John Maeda: Computational Design and Inclusion
December 12, 2016 — Products and services can be designed to be exclusive or inclusive — it’s a conscious choice, and it’s often about the traditional tradeoffs of quality, price, and deadlines to achieve greater margins and profitability. However, computational products and services have ushered in a new world where we can now ship products instantaneously at marginal costs close to zero — which brings unprecedented and immediate accessibility to the largest total addressable market imaginable via the Internet. It means that the nature of design needs to change, and also the way we think of who we are designing for needs to change. I’ve just begun this journey within the WordPress universe, and I’ll be sharing what I’ve gathered thus far on how more inclusive approaches to design are the key to better designed products and service in tech.


Morten Rand-Hendriksen: Empathy and Acceptance in Design and Community
June 29, 2016 — Working on and with the web is engaging in that most human of endeavors: Communication. Even so, it’s easy to forget that the people we interact with and those who access and interact with our creations are just that: People. Learn how to make empathy and acceptance driving forces for your interactions and designs to build great informational experiences for everyone.

Top ↑

Open Source and Design Open Source and Design

Designing for open source projects can be difficult and opinionated. It takes a confident designer to share their process (mistakes and accomplishments) with a community of diverse people. Learn about designing for open source and the tricks to make it a pleasant experience.


Michael Arestad: Big Design Troubles in Open Source
June 21, 2017 — What the heck can we do to improve the design process on open source projects? Designing for open source projects is difficult and comes with a unique set of challenges. The challenges include communication difficulties, tech limitations, slow implementation times, community pushback, complex developer tools, unique design considerations, and lack of design process. I’m going to address these challenges and propose ways to improve or implement an efficient design process as a community.


Mark Uraine: Designing in the Open
May 9, 2017 — Designing in the open is about sharing your work and progress publicly through the course of a design project. I’ll explain how this works, where to start, and why it’s good practice for all designers. We’ll also discuss how you can give back to the WordPress community through design contributions to Core and WordPress.org.

Sources

1 https://www.usability.gov/what-and-why/user-research.html
2 https://www.usability.gov/what-and-why/visual-design.html
3 https://www.usability.gov/what-and-why/user-interface-design.html
4 https://www.usability.gov/what-and-why/accessibility.html
5 https://www.fastcodesign.com/3062981/john-maedas-next-design-problem-the-tech-industrys-utter-lack-of-diversity

Top ↑

Non-WordPress Events and Conferences Non-WordPress Events and Conferences

See this ongoing list of non-WordPress events and conferences of interest to designers. Please comment if you have attended one of them.