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Vote for WillowTree’s SXSW Talk Submissions

Image of WillowTree's proposing panelists

It’s that time of the year again! The SXSW Panel Picker is open to determine the speaker lineup for SXSW 2018. The WillowTree UX team has proposed 6 talks and 1 panel, a record-setting year for us in terms of proposals.

Please take a moment to vote for each of these thoughtful and inspiring sessions. The Panel Picker counts toward 50% of the selection decision—your vote will help us spread the good word of mobile UX.

Here’s my take on what we’re proposing, and links to the panel picker page for each entry to make the process easier.


Blind People Want to Use Your Apps

Take a deep dive into the best practices for designing mobile apps for no-vision/blind users with WillowTree’s own Accessibility expert, Ayesha Zafar. The talk will leverage concepts from last year’s low-vision talk, but will be designed as a standalone session for those who didn’t make it last year.

Target audience: product managers, designers, engineers, QA

Pitch to Ship: Cultivating Creativity in Tech

Too often, designers get all the credit for being creative. At WillowTree, we recognize that creativity plays a powerful part of every role at WillowTree, from engineering to the business development team. Margo Bulka from our Product Strategy team will take you through some of the ways we foster a creative culture on all teams, based on research we’ve conducted on what creativity means in a tech company.

Target audience: technology executives, product managers, engineers, marketers, HR

The Designer’s Role in an AI World

The internet changed the field of design (and the world) in the 90s. The proliferation of smartphones did this again over the past decade. We are now on the cusp of a similarly transformational inflection point: the emergence of Artificial Intelligence. What does AI mean for product designers? Will it take their jobs? Spoiler alert: probably not. David Murray, Director of Product Design, will walk through how to embrace AI and use it as a tool to improve the products we’re designing.

Target audience: designers, design leads, technology executives

Digital Interfaces and the Future of Language

It’s often forgotten that many apps and websites are, in essence, forms of human communication. Digital can enable incredibly efficient and beautiful forms of communication that fundamentally change how we interpret and send information to one another; on the other hand, when improperly wielded, digital can impede our ability to effectively communicate. Chris Stauffer, Sr. Product Designer, will dissect the impact and responsibility that designers have when creating new digital products through the lens of improving our ability to communicate with one another.

Target audience: designers

Content Strategy for Mobile Apps

Content can never be an afterthought. How do you plan for content across platforms? What about push notifications? App Store listings and ASO? Content Strategy for mobile has its own unique challenges that Melanie Seibert, Sr. Content Strategist, will illustrate through her talk.

Target audience: content strategists, copywriters, product managers

Partnership for Innovation by Design Immersion

A few months ago, we co-led an Chatbot / CUI class at the University of Virginia. In the class, students were led through design workshops and techniques we use to design and train Chatbots, while also hearing various academic perspectives on Chatbot / CUI impact to the world. This panel will feature Jeremy Stern, Sr. Analytics Architect, who will discuss the benefits of University / Corporate partnerships for education.

Target audience: design leads, higher education

Designing TV Apps for Gen Z

Everyone is talking about millennials, but the next big generation of digital natives is already here. Generation Z has many similarities with their predecessor group, but there are key differences which are important to consider. Jesse Prehodick, Sr. Product Designer, and Matthew Morrison, Sr. Product Researcher, will discuss best practices for designing TV and video experiences for Gen Z.

Target audience: designers, media product managers, researchers


As you can see, plenty to be excited about around here! Be sure to vote for your favorites and send them to your friends to do the same. Thanks for helping us get these talks to Austin!

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