Four great talks on what design on the web means today, as a profession, a medium, an industry, and a community.
The web is growing and changing. It's in our homes and pockets. It's websites and apps. This young industry but strong community is made up of professionals, students and enthusiasts who're always expanding and shaping it. Together, they create what's now a fundamental part in the everyday lives of millions of people. Its impact can't be overlooked, and its power as a design medium can't be understated.
ESAD Web Talks is an one-afternoon event with four talks by five international speakers, on what design on the web means today and where it's going next.
Admission is free. Each talk lasts around 45 minutes.
- 14:30: Opening remarks
- 14:40: You Are a Channel — The Standardistas
- 15:30: Ready to Build — Andy McMillan
- 16:20: Break
- 17:00: A Philosophy of Restraint — Simon Collison
- 17:50: Creating to Convince — Robbie Manson
- 18:40: Closing remarks
After dinner, you’re welcome to join the staff and speakers for drinks.
Our speakers will share their knowledge, teach some lessons they learned, and raise pertinent questions that will appeal to experienced web professionals, designers from other fields, and newcomers to the web community. Here’s a sneak peek.
14:40: You Are a Channel — The Standardistas
As web designers we have access to the tools and delivery mechanisms to not only promote our clients, but also to promote ourselves. How we use these tools strategically and the messages we convey through them can alter our web design trajectories considerably, often proving the difference between success or failure.
You are a channel. How you choose to portray yourself matters. In our keynote we explore the philosophical and practical challenges that face the contemporary web designer, helping them to stand out in an increasingly crowded marketplace.
15:30: Ready to Build — Andy McMillan
In September 1991, two German tourists — hiking the Ötztal Alps on the Austrian-Italian border — uncovered a mummified man who had died there over 5,300 years ago. This talk will explore the significance of this discovery as it relates to the history of human social evolution, what this tells us about our innate drive towards trade and collaboration, why this makes the web humanity's most exciting prospect, and why our charge of designing it is 100% completely and totally awesome.
17:00: A Philosophy of Restraint — Simon Collison
With a wealth of ideas and tools at our disposal, we often muddle our messages and complicate our code. We appreciate that less is usually more, yet stuff our sites to the bursting point, failing to be economical with what we have. We must know when to stop, and when to throw things out. We should embrace simplicity and subtlety, and exploit the invisible. Through timeless lessons and practical examples, learn how reduction and restraint can improve communication, emotion, and experience in our designs, with a philosophy applicable to every aspect of the systems we produce.
17:50: Creating to Convince — Robbie Manson
Great storytellers grasp the power of illusion. They understand that an audience must be convinced, and that systems of storytelling contain the magic ingredients to make it happen. Design must also convince in order to communicate effectively, and stories can provide vehicles for that communication. When design communicates—when it fuses people and ideas—it has the power to ignite change. Designers have never been in a more empowered position, able to push the world forward. Are we making the most of it?
Each of our five incredible speakers has their own path in the industry and a unique role in the community. Here's a bit about who they are, and what they do.
Andy is the founder of Fiction, a made-up company responsible for Build, a week-long festival in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and The Manual, a tri-annual journal, both of which have a focus around designing for the web and who we are as designers.
Robbie is a designer based in Edinburgh, Scotland, where he creates interfaces at FreeAgent. Having started out running his own one-man company, before moving to a digital agency and now working on a single web app, he's experienced in client and product, print and digital. He takes care of the details, because he's a good man, and thorough.
Simon Collison is a designer who probably spends more time thinking than designing. He’s been thinking and designing at the sharp end for well over a decade, and regularly presents his thoughts at conferences and in publications. He’s worked in a variety of situations for bands, governments, banks, explorers and most other things. He’s currently collaborating on a new music start-up, and organizes the annual New Adventures events. Simon is based in Nottingham, UK, but travels a lot, and will spend much of 2012 making short films with only his iPhone.
Christopher Murphy and Nicklas Persson teach interactive design at the University of Ulster, Belfast, where they have been active in promoting a web standards-based curriculum for over a decade. As tweed-clad duo The Standardistas they write and speak regularly on standards-based web design and the importance of improving web design education. Authors of the seminal beginners' guide “HTML and CSS Web Standards Solutions – A Web Standardistas' Approach”, they've written for a variety of publications, including The Manual, 24 Ways, .net magazine, in addition to their design-focused journal.
- Seated places are limited. It’s OK to stand on the back or sit on the floor.