UK UPA: UX Design and Online Communities review

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Last night Clarence Lee attended UK UPA: UX Design and Online Communities, here is his summary of the event:

One of the key ingredients of a UX event is a series of talks, last night’s UK UPA event, themed around UX Design and Online Communities, was no different. I love watching a good speaker at work and it’s even better there’s something for you to take away at the end.

Angel Brown’s presentation of Trust in Digital health was one such example. High on enthusiasm from beginning to end, Angel took us through her journey towards an academic model of gaining trust. She also showed us her assessments of existing pharmaceutical websites that aim to share information between the medical communities and how they hold up against the factors required to incite trust amongst their users.

Blaise Grimes-Viort’s slides on managing communities triggered a number tweets with the question of what presentation tool he’s using, the likely answer to that is Prezi , aka the nausea inducer. Many of Blaise’s points on signposting, ego stroking and information surface shouldn’t be news to a room full of UX designers but what really made his presentation awesome was the simple and clear way in which he points out the success and failures of online communities out there, all of which were very well chosen to hammer in his points.

Kam star warned us of gamification’s pitfalls, explifying this with Tumblr’s experience of being bombarded by gobble-dee-gook posts from users trying to gain points. It’s not all bad though, Volkswagen’s Speed Limit Lottery ( did successfully reduce speeding in Sweden. This brought us to his point: gamification is already a part of real life, and, quite frankly, we’re just capitalising on it.

Finally, Rob Falla gave us some insights into his Facebook game, Brand Bang!, developed for Bunnyfoot. The numbers showed continuing success of the game even after the initial iPad 2 competition to jumpstart the influx of players. Rob attributes this success to several factors: the game is actually fun, it’s built on a self-organising feedback platform (Facebook in the form of comments and likes), and the responsiveness of his team to that feedback.

All in all this was a great evening, thanks to UK UPA and Andrea Lewis for making it happen.

See more on the event:

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