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Wednesday 25th October 2017
A UX guide to designing virtual reality experiences

Jamie Wales & Ian Holliday from Bunnyfoot

With many VR applications being built and companies dipping their toe in the VR water we are seeing that many of these have a poor user experience. As with any service, it’s important to consider the basic principles when designing for VR. Based on our experiences from testing with users, we’ll talk about some of the UX principles to consider when creating a VR app.

About this month's speaker

Jamie Wales

Jamie graduated from Loughborough University achieving a BSc (Hons) degree in Ergonomics, therefore understanding the importance of designing for the needs of the user. He was particularly interested in the HCI aspect of his studies and this is what led Jamie to join Bunnyfoot.

Jamie is well versed in carrying out various UCD methodologies such as expert evaluations, user testing and card sorting. During his time at Bunnyfoot he has worked closely with big name clients such as BSkyB, Visa and Sony, such client relationships have seen him undertake and coordinate studies internationally, both face to face and remotely.

Outside of work Jamie's main passion is music, he plays the guitar, ukulele and attempts to play the Saxophone when the neighbours aren't in! He has been involved in various bands throughout the years and recorded two albums, the highlight of his musical experiences being a highly eventful whirlwind tour of Europe, one to tell the kids about!


Ian Holiday

Ian has experience of all stages of User Centred Design, including usability studies, information architecture, wireframes, and interaction design. Prior to working at Bunnyfoot, he spent 5 years working in the financial services sector as a UX designer and so is used to working on complex, highly regulated projects.

Ian had previously spent 4 years working with content management systems, again in the financial services sector, which has given him a good understanding of the technology behind the designs and the challenges it can present. Ian's recent clients include Arsenal, OAG, NEST, Platts and the Department of Work and Pensions.

Ian enjoys playing 5-a-side football, cocktail making and travel (recent trips include walking the Inca Trail in Peru and cycling down Death Road in Bolivia)


Evening Schedule

  1. 6.15pm - 6.45pm: Get a drink and take a seat!
  2. 6.45pm - 7.30pm: The main talk
  3. 7.30pm - 8pm: Open mic - Tell us something, sell us anything, need help? ask the room
  4. 8pm - Close: Drinks and a good old natter in the bar!

Previous Events

July 2017:
Priceless Projects: Insights from a year of R&D work

Jon Rhodes from Paper

Video coming soon!

Working on R&D projects is really important to Paper, a Sheffield-based user research and design studio. In fact, the company was created around this key principle. Jon talked about how this has led to designing and building a chatbot, spending time working with local businesses and charities, and creating a community-driven mentorship event.


May 2017:
Further Together: Designing Culture Change

David Bailey from The BBC

The Global Experience Language (GEL) is the BBC’s shared design framework. It underpins the design of the organisation’s entire online output. The GEL UX team facilitate it’s origination, development and reuse, which affords a more consistent user experience across the BBC online. David’s talk focussed on how their design department’s joined-up approach is inspiring culture change, the importance of shared ownership and how it benefits the BBC’s ongoing digital transformation.


January 2017:
How not to build an app

Gerard Lennox from Quba

Slides coming soon

Despite 35 years’ experience in computing Gerad agreed that his company would build an App based on new technology that was to be used in the real world by over 900 people at a high profile event with an immovable go live date that couldn’t be extended by even a few hours.


November 2016:
A/S/L Why collecting user data is about more than just forms

Chad Gowler from Sky

We ask our users to give us a lot of personal data in order to provide rich experiences. People are complex and it is very easy to make assumptions about the most basic questions. This talk will look at how to ask people about data in a way that is inclusive and helpful while still providing value. Using gender, age and name as examples, we will learn what the stress cases are and what other things we need to consider when we ask our users to trust us with their identity.


September 2016:
'Five users will find 85% of the usability problems' - and other myths about usability testing

Rolf Molich from DialogDesign

Usability testing is by far the most widely used usability method. Nonetheless, it’s often conducted with poor or unsystematic methodology and thus doesn’t always live up to its full potential. Rolf Molich led an interactive and lively discussion about a number of controversial beliefs about usability evaluation and discuss if they are truths or myths.


July 2016:
Lies, and the lying liars who tell them - why you shouldn't listen to your customers

Jon Dixon from Bunnyfoot

As UX practitioners our main goal is to create the best customer experience possible. This means not just designing experiences that give our users all the things they want but also all the things they need - answering their questions, alleviating their anxieties and supplying their demands. Doing that will give us very happy customers. But how do we find out what those drivers, blockers, needs and worries are? The obvious answer is to ask them. But is this all we need to do? In this light-hearted and interactive talk we’ll explore some of the reasons why simply listening to your users might be a bad idea.


May 2016:
Conversion Rate Optimisation: Lessons from Start-Up ville

Tom Waterfall from Lost my name

Having come over from heading up an optimisation services team vendor-side and doing CRO for about 8 years, Tom shared lessons from joining his first start up over the last 6 months.


March 2016:
Transforming the Home Office: Using agile, user research and service design to deliver better services for citizens

Katy Arnold & Kate Tarling from Home Office Digital (GDS)


January 2016:

Rahel Bailie from Scroll

The discipline of content strategy has been evolving, and has gone from obscurity to necessity for communicators with sophisticated publishing needs. We’ve matured to the point where we have some lessons to teach - some of them uplifting, others not so much. This presentation will brush off the cobwebs, and share the highlights of some of the more "interesting" projects from the presenter’s repertoire.


November 2015:
The Naked Project

Mark Goddard & Gemma Barnes from Quba

Slides coming soon!

The Naked Project. A talk for project managers, coaches, business owners, clients, designers, the lot. We’re not here to preach about the design process, or how you should be working. We’re here to talk about a real life client project we worked on, and how we collaborated with a London Airport to pitch, research and design a website used by 4.5 million people with a real focus on transforming the way they work. No project is perfect so let’s learn together and share.


September 2015:
Applying design principles: War stories

Clara Teoh & Ruben Huidobro from GDS

Video coming soon!


July 2015:
How to Test Your Mobile Site Without Spending A Fortune

Barry Briggs from The BBC

Barry Briggs showed us why usability testing your site on mobile devices needn’t be difficult nor expensive, but might require a bit of DIY.


May 2015:
The Internet of Things: People are the Product

James Bailey from Bunnyfoot

Companies are investing billions into the Internet of Things (IoT). They are exploring what is possible and trying to find value in connecting the world around us. How can they avoid costly mistakes? The answers lie in our everyday lives. In the talk James Bailey looks at how you can create superior products and services through a user-centred approach.


March 2015:
Just Enough Engineering: is full-stack design a thing now?

Dan Jones from Capital One

Agile is pretty much the de facto methodology for new software projects, and it brings a renewed emphasis on collaboration to deliver great products. During this talk, Dan discussed full-stack design, how it can help improve collaboration between design and development, why it scares the life out of him (in a good way) and why he expects to spend less time creating wireframes in the future.


January 2015:
The (M)admen of the 50s were the first User Experience designers – and we should revisit what many have forgotten to improve the experiences of today

Jon Dodd from Bunnyfoot

Evidence based design, Function over form, measuring effectiveness, persuasive design, emotional design… and more - find out how some of the leading lights of the Madison Avenue admen era were practicing and delivering positive, persuasive and profitable customer interactions decades before digital – most of the wisdom is still relevant today.


November 2014:
International Usability Testing: Stories from the field

Veronika Jermolina from Bunnyfoot

You’ve designed a website, a checkout flow, or a service. You’ve conducted usability testing, fixed the issues. All that’s left now is to send your copy to the translation agency to translate into other languages… Veronika showed us that this approach is likely to throw unexpected issues that may prevent customers from engaging with the product. Veronika shared her learnings and anecdotes from planning, conducting and analysing international user research. Veronika demonstrated pragmatic and usable techniques for accommodating international customers.


Future UX Sheffield Events

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