DIY UX: Give Your Users an Upgrade (without calling in a pro)

Moderated by:
Whitney Hess (Self-employed)
Design & User Experience
Location: Empire East
Average rating: ****.
(4.21, 24 ratings)

Have you fallen in love with your solution and forgotten the original problem? Are you certain that your product actually makes people’s lives better? Not every company can hire someone like me to help you listen to your users, so you’re gonna have to learn how to do some of this stuff yourself. I’ll show you techniques to find out who your users are, what they really need and how to go about giving it to them in an easy to use and pleasurable way. And it doesn’t have to bankrupt you or kill your release date.

Photo of Whitney Hess

Whitney Hess


WHITNEY HESS is a user experience design consultant based in New York City. She helps make stuff easy and pleasurable to use.

Prior to going independent, Whitney was on the design team at Liquidnet, an international financial software company that runs the leading electronic marketplace for wholesale stock-trading. Previously, she was an interaction designer at two marketing agencies, Digitas and Tribal DDB, where her clients included American Express, The New York Times, Allstate, Claritin, Tropicana, and EarthLink. Most notably, she helped to conceive, design, and test an innovative card search tool for American Express, and is named as a co-inventor on its U.S. patent.

Whitney is a strategic partner with Happy Cog and user experience consultant for Boxee, among other startups, agencies, and major corporations. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing and a Master’s degree in Human-Computer Interaction from Carnegie Mellon University. She writes about improving the human experience on her blog, Pleasure and Pain, and can always be reached via Twitter @whitneyhess.

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Picture of Whitney Hess
Whitney Hess
10/01/2010 9:50am EDT

Thanks so much for your great comments! My slides can be found at

Jeff Martin
09/29/2010 2:02pm EDT

Great talk, you mentioned you’d have the slides available…where would those be?


John Stepper
09/29/2010 10:58am EDT

An engaging, well-structured talk. Really useful, practical advice w/ great examples.

Picture of Carl Mercier
Carl Mercier
09/29/2010 10:55am EDT

Awesome talk. Lots of great information, thanks!

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