UX Australia 2009

Why attend UX Australia

Let’s imagine UX Australia is finished, and you’re explaining what you got out of it. You should be able to say:

  • I discovered a way to do something better. All the presentations I attended were based on real projects and were presented by the people who were involved in those projects. Their experience, insight and honesty gave me practical ideas for how to do similar things in my work.
  • I learned a new technique. By hearing about real projects and activities that people did within them, I learned two new techniques that I can put in place immediately.
  • I have new strategies for explaining myself. I always have trouble explaining my designs or convincing other people that my ideas are good ones. Through the case studies at UX Australia, I saw different ways of explaining ideas and communicating with other people on my team. I also learned a lot about how people communicate the value of their work in different environments.
  • I’m prepared for something new. UX Australia had presentations on designing for mobile devices, gestural interfaces, forms, data-rich interfaces, social media and even regular websites and intranets. Now when one of those projects comes our way, I at least know where to start.
  • I met people who have challenges like mine. Talking with other attendees at UX Australia was the best part of the conference. I realised that other people have similar challenges to me, and now I know people I can contact to chat about how they tackled similar things.
  • I’m relaxed and inspired. Two (or three) days away from the workplace gave me time to relax and think about the bigger picture – getting away from the hourly crises was great for putting things into perspective. Talking to people and learning that others have similar challenges also helped me feel refreshed and recharged.

How we help you achieve these outcomes

We can’t guarantee that you’ll get these outcomes. But we can do a lot to create a situation for them to happen, including:

  • Presentations focus on practice and are grounded in experience. Before we even started thinking about what presentations would be included in the program, we thought about the guiding principles for the conference. These included the ideas of focusing on practice, being grounded in experience and describing interesting problems. We have no theoretical presentations, no ideas without implementation and no sales pitches.
  • Presentations cover a range of topics. We have deliberately chosen a wide range of topics. There are presentations on design for forms, mobile devices, websites, business applications, off-the shelf products, touch interfaces and physical objects. There are also presentations on creating strategies, undertaking research, communicating with others and working with different roles in a team.
  • Speakers know their topic. All UX Australia speakers will be presenting about their own projects. They were involved in every aspect of what they’ll be covering, so know what they are talking about.
  • Speakers will engage with you. We know that people learn best when they are engaged. All of our speakers have agreed to involve the audience and make their presentations interactive. All of them will be at the conference for you to talk to and ask questions.

Of course, a conference isn’t just about sitting in a room listening to people present. We’ve left plenty of time for breaks for you to talk with each other and will be including ways for you to find people who are interested in the same things as you.

You are an active participant in your learning

Ultimately you are the one who makes the conference experience valuable for you. You can get more out of it by doing some of these things:

  • Prepare ahead. Read the presentation descriptions and get a good idea of what will be covered. Plan to attend the presentations that interest you most (not just the ones that you ‘should’ go to) – you’ll get more out of them if you are interested.
  • Take notes. You’ll retain more if you take notes during the conference – make notes about interesting ideas, things to follow up and topics to learn more about.
  • Report back. If you work with a team, plan to report back about some of the things you learned and the things you would like to do differently. Encourage your team to listen to the recordings of key presentations.
  • Follow up. Plan a way to follow up after the conference. Listen to the recordings of sessions you missed, read articles about a new topic or plan to try a new technique.

You also get

On top of all that, when you attend UX Australia you also get:

  • Food: Tea and coffee when you arrive, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea (and good stuff too – we know how much food matters)
  • Good coffee: Everyone gets a coffee voucher from Five Senses Coffee
  • Opportunity to win free stuff: Some of our sponsors have provided software, books and other goodies as lucky door prizes

All presentations will be audio recorded and available after the conference, so you can listen again to something you loved or catch something you missed.

And it costs…

For $A800, you get to attend both days of the UX Australia main conference. For an extra $250 (half day) or $450 (full day) you can attend one of the very practical pre-conference workshops.