Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States

Michigan League Ballroom

Saturday, February 24, 2018


Michigan League Ballroom
911 N University Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Directions and Parking information can be found at University of Michigan University Unions: Directions to the Michigan League.

Program Schedule
9:00 AM - 9:45 AM

Doors will open at 8:30 AM. Come check-in, grab breakfast and coffee and settle into the ballroom.

9:45 AM - 10:00 AM
Welcome & Opening Remarks
10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
Planning for Misinformation - Peter Morville

We think we’re creating products, services, and experiences. But we’re not. We are agents of change. Our systems shape belief and behavior at scale. Expertise isn’t enough. Methods, metrics, culture, and governance are shifting. To realize the future, we must get better at planning. In this spirited talk about the design of paths and goals, Peter Morville builds upon his famous “polar bear book” to reframe vision, strategy, and process; and draws from his new book Planning for Everything to reveal 4 principles and 6 practices vital for shaping the future.

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10:50 AM - 11:20 AM
Rhetorical Dishonesty - Kat King

Good information architecture helps people understand what is, and helps them navigate the universe of human meaning with the same confidence they navigate the physical world. We may think we are creating neutral architectures that reflect the "Truth", but everything we create or say is generated from our perspective, and most of the time we are not actually even trying to be neutral, we're trying to make a point, or to influence opinions, behaviors, and outcomes. We (hopefully!) don't do this with nefarious intentions, so how can we be sure we aren't being dishonest? I'll explain why we can't be neutral, show some examples of rhetorical dishonesty, and offer a challenge for each of us to be more honest and direct in how we architect information, whether it's a website, a movement, or a single meme.

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11:20 AM - 11:30 AM
11:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Lightning Talks (Round 1)

Using Information Architecture to Promote Healthy Use of Products
Jatin Gupta
UX professionals design products to make them more engaging and usable for users, but do not always consider the potential effects of their products on users' health and habits. Designers can leverage information architecture to help users overcome impatience, short attention span, and other unhealthy habits.

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When Your UX Subjects Are Also Your Customers
Mark Thompson-Kolar
Most usability testing and user interview education of UX professionals focuses on B2C scenarios, but B2B scenarios just as common. Ensuring the research is valid for B2B customer/users requires that UX researchers keep some important points in mind, which I will share in this talk.

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Using Information Architecture Workshops to Build Trust and Change Culture
Alyssa Kata
As part of a major website redesign process, the UM-Dearborn Web team worked with stakeholders across the university to review and reorganize the content of a 10,000+ page website. I’ll share how we used information architecture workshops to build the campus community’s trust in our newly-formed Web team and turned sometimes skeptical stakeholders into IA and UX cheerleaders during a culture-changing redesign process.

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12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

All attendees will receive a handout of places nearby to grab a quick lunch! Lunch will be provided for speakers and sponsors.

1:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Dark Patterns - Nisreen Salka

Dark patterns are deliberate attempts to mislead users through design. Dark patterns are rather prevalent, from Facebook's emotional blackmail when users attempt to deactivate their account, to cable companies' intentional placement of the "cancel subscription" button on rarely visited pages. The truth of the matter is that dark patterns are terrible for the user but beneficial to the company's bottom line. During this talk, I would like to discuss the role of the designer in the battle between pleasing users and generating revenue. Drawing on personal stories and examples, I will make the argument that designers are uniquely positioned to influence key stakeholders in favor of designing for the user first, and profit second. I will outline key strategies for combatting this problem within our own organizations/teams. By drawing attention to the presence of dark patterns and how we can work together as designers to protect users from them, we can begin acting as a force of change in the design industry.

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1:30 PM - 2:10 PM
Lightning Talks (Round 2)

Twenty Ways to Say "No"
Andrea Neuhoff
Twenty different ways to say "no" to an idea, a request, misinformation, a design feature, ignorance, a project, coworker, alienation, your mom, your best friend, polarization, and so forth.

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You are an Information Influencer
Diane Bowen
Computers are solving problems at a pace more rapid than ever before. Not only are they beating masters at GO, in seconds they can determine our credit score and reveal our ancestry while virtual assistants help us with scheduling and reminders. Unfortunately, the average person’s social customs, cultural standards, and the overall understanding of technology update at a much slower pace. Sometimes we trust digital entities we shouldn’t trust, are betrayed by those who should be trustworthy, and may be manipulated by digital ne’er-do-wells. While most technology users are celebrating advances in computing power, it is time we as technologists, entrepreneurs, governments, and community members take time to openly and authentically assess risk. We should discuss how these advances can potentially deepen inequality and alienation and take proactive steps to help humanity avoid these traps.

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Accessibility Concerns with Dark UX Patterns
Caitlin Geier
We know that dark design patterns negatively affect a user's experience, often for the purposes of maximizing profit. But there's another, darker angle: by creating dark patterns, whether consciously or not, designers are disproportionately affecting the elderly and people with disabilities. My goal is to build the audience's awareness of the aspects of dark patterns which are particular concerns for accessibility.

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Choice Architecture and Framing Policy Decisions
Shawn Danino
I'll be discussing choice architecture as it relates to framing policy decisions, particularly when it comes to 'nudging' people into making healthy decisions and understanding the tradeoffs when it comes to voting on these decisions.

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2:10 PM - 2:40 PM
Gender and Artificial Intelligence - Meg Green

Gender is an innate part of human existence. It is an expression of ourselves and even our culture. However, gender is not innate to our creations. When we design something inanimate to imitate gender, it impacts our society as a whole, especially when we gender our artificial intelligence. We have a tendency to gender "assistant" AIs female and independent AIs male, such as Siri vs Watson, translate non-gendered languages to have gender, and allow our conversational AI to adopt gendered biases. Is this for the best, or are there ways to prevent human gender biases from impacting AI, so that we may have a more equal future?

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2:40 PM - 3:00 PM
Closing Remarks & Raffle
Speakers & Presenters
Photo of Peter Morville
Peter Morville
Semantic Studios

Peter Morville is a pioneer in the fields of information architecture and user experience. His bestselling books include Information Architecture for the World Wide Web, Intertwingled, Search Patterns, and Ambient Findability. He advises such clients as AT&T, Cisco, Harvard, IBM, Macy’s, Vodafone, the Library of Congress, and the National Cancer Institute. He has delivered conference keynotes and workshops in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. His work has been covered by Business Week, NPR, The Economist, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal. His latest book Planning for Everything is about the design of paths and goals. Peter lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan with his wife, two daughters, and a dog named Knowsy. He blogs at

Photo of Kat King
Kat King
Information Architect
University of Michigan Library

Kat King is an information architect who works with researchers, professors, entrepreneurs, and librarians to help them understand complex problem spaces and develop strategic plans. She’s interested in the big questions about language and meaning and what it is that makes us human.

Photo of Nisreen Salka
Nisreen Salka
Lead Product Designer
Ford Motor Company

Nisreen Salka graduated with a dual degree in business administration and screen arts in May 2016 and is now pursuing her masters in human-computer interaction from the University of Michigan School of Information. In addition to her studies, she works as the lead product designer for the Smart Mobility Emerging Analytics department at Ford Motor Company. In her free time, Nisreen enjoys digital photography, experimenting with new recipes, and talking continuously for long periods of time. 

Photo of Meg Green
Meg Green
User Experience Researcher
Pillar Technology

Meg Green is a User Experience Researcher at Pillar Technology. They consult with a variety of clients, in both the public and private sectors, to bridge the gap between users and their tools. Previously, they studied at the University of Michigan School of Information where they specialized in Human-Computer Interaction.

Meg is passionate about the relationship between technology and society, and how to ensure it remains an auspicious one.

Local Sponsors & Partners

Local Team

Photo of Wilson Parson

Wilson Parson is a second-year master's student at the University of Michigan School of Information studying human-computer interaction. He enjoys the process of transforming designs into code, and plans to work as a front-end developer after graduating this spring. Wilson loves spending time with his wife and daughter, fly fishing, reading, and finding geeky ways to be more productive.

Photo of Kylie Wojciechowski
Kylie Wojciechowski

Kylie (Ky) Wojciechowski is in her first year of the Master of Science in Information program at U-M, specializing in UX Research. (To answer your question, the trick to pronouncing her last name is to say “Where’s your house key?” quickly.)

With a background in technical communication and information management, she's passionate about usability, accessibility, and clarity. She likes to listen to podcasts and travel. When not studying or working, she spends time with her friends, family, and the dogs her family got to replace her when she left for college.

Photo of Ruta Gokhale
Ruta Gokhale

Ruta Gokhale is a second-year master's student at University of Michigan School of Information, studying human-computer interaction. She plans to pursue a career in UX research after graduating in April 2018. In her spare time, she likes to paint, watch movies and read fictional books.

Photo of Olivia Patercsak
Olivia Patercsak

Olivia is a second-year master's student at the University of Michigan's School of Information concentrating in human-computer interaction. In particular, she is interested in Edtech, service design, and gaming. Olivia plans to work as a UX Designer upon graduating this coming April. Aside from this, she enjoys crafting and DIY projects, listening to music, and kayaking when it's warm outside.

Photo of Purva Sane

Purva Sane is a second-year Master's student at the School of Information, getting her Master of Science degree in Human-Computer Interaction. She is interested in understanding how people interact with technology in their everyday life. After graduating in April this year, Purva hopes to use her knowledge and training to design technological solutions in the education industry. Outside of school and work, Purva is always looking for new things to cook and eat and can be frequently found day-dreaming about owning a dog.

Photo of Vladimir Potiyevskiy
Vladimir Potiyevskiy

Vladimir is a first-year master student studying Human-Computer Interaction. His focus is User-Experience Design and hopes to work at a technology organization after graduation. Vladimir's curiosity for all things technology drives his craving to solve complex problems with a human-centered design approach. Vladimir is always looking out for new
music, trying new food or learning how to break a new piece of technology.