MIX08 Experience from Kerri McKenna

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Kerri and I got to know each other when I first joined Microsoft last year. I remember during my first meeting at imason, she opened my eyes with elegant Sharepoint portal design projects she was working on. Kerri is part of imason’s User Experience team, and wears a lot of different hats when it comes to supporting our development team. On any given project she might be working with clients to design the user experience for an application by creating wireframes or writing requirements, making recommendations on an Information Architecture, designing and facilitating usability tests, coming up with the graphic design, or writing HTML and CSS for our developers. Here`s what Kerri has to say about her MIX experience:


What did you want to get out of MIX (or your expectations of MIX) before attending?

I looked forward to MIX because I’m interested in Microsoft’s messages for the design community. Designers and UX professionals aren’t part of their traditional target audience, so I attended my first MIX conference in 2006 with a lot skepticism. At MIX06, they publically declared their commitment to supporting the design community, but more importantly their actions in the past two years have demonstrated how serious they are about including UX professionals in their target audience. I was excited to return this year and learn about their progress and plans on the UX front, and wasn’t disappointed.

There are many announcements about Silverlight , Expression Studio, and IE8 during the Keynote on first day. Any announcement or demo really resonated with you and got you excited?

The new features in IE8 caught my attention, but what really got me excited was the idea of using Silverlight to create adaptive user interfaces (as demonstrated during the “Crossing the Usability Chasm” breakout session).

What are some most interesting sessions you attended during MIX08? Why?

I really appreciated the Adaptive Path hands-on workshops in the UX track. It’s always great to learn new tips and tricks for evolving the processes that UX professionals use to help our clients get to the essence of what it is their own end-users need.

What sorts of content you wish to see at next year’s MIX? Any comment on how can we make MIX better?

I would love to see more of what the international community is doing with Microsoft’s new technologies. Both conferences I’ve attended so far (MIX06 and MIX08) have been quite U.S.-centric.

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Comments (2)
  1. I am so glad that Kerri enjoyed our UX workshops. Kim and I were overwhelmed by the positive response from everyone. Going into it, we were not sure how well our message would be received by the MIX08 crowd, since it is mostly targeted at a developer audience. It was great to see how many UX designers were in attendance and how great the conversations and participation was.

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