Viti Culture

The problem: Most wine apps focus on information: searching and cataloging wine. Encyclopedias. Boring.

The solution: Viti Culture focuses on the culture of wine. The history. The stories. Helping people discover more great wines, wineries, and the amazing dedicated growers and winemakers behind them. One amazing way is to create wine tours, to help you learn about wineries you never knew existed, all from your phone.

I provided interaction design, flow, user experience design and a stunning ui with hand-crafted custom icons for this hot mobile app. I loved working with this project!

Trek Learning Experience Manager

The Problem: 90% of all training materials are spent on book training - what accounts for only 10% of how people actually learn to do a job. (Do you think you could learn to fix a car solely by reading about it?)

The Solution: Trek aims to capture the remaining 90% of how people learn by focusing on mentorship and on-the-job training. The app is a responsive, mobile-first web-app. 

I designed this product that takes users, guides them through the process, and allows them to view and reply to feedback. For example, a user may be told to perform an activity, take a photo of it, and the answer a few questions about the task. A mentor will give feedback on his performance, and the user will be able to learn from the process, and track his own performance and progress through his certification.

I provided the user experience for the mobile app first, which was to be our first and primary target. User research was provided to me on this project, and I worked with the development team and the client to create a spec that was both intuitive for our users, fit the budget, and allowed the engineers the timeline needed to build the project. I created wireframes for the interaction design, and fleshed out polished UI design that fit the brand colors.

I hand-coded HTML, CSS, and JQuery to be the final deliverable for the engineers. The final design was received very well by the client, and his customers!

“I love the ability to communicate back and forth with my employees,” says a manager who coached new hires during the pilot. “I love being proactively prompted that something is ready for me to review. This system gives me a reason to talk with my people about customers and issues so I can tell if they understand what they’re learning. I liked it so much I want to coach more people.”

EO Admin

The Problem: Adding and configuring customers, while in the midst of fast-growth and increasing traction, was putting too much strain on our developers.

The Solution: I designed a new tool to manage most of the back-office functions, uncluding adding and updating membership accounts. The new tool eased pressure on the engineers and put the power and control into the hands of account and finance teams.

I was designing a product for 3 people to whom I had complete and unfettered access, so this project was a user research cakewalk. This was a brand new product meant to eradicate painful, slow, manual processes, so we were starting from scratch. Using interviews to identify context and formalize task flow, created a user interface which shared visual elements and color palette with other Eved-branded properties, yet retained it's own unique look and feel. 

The internal team was blown away and elated with the new administrative tool. They would now have the power to properly manage Eved customers and configure their services with an easy to use, custom-designed tool.

Eved Website

The Problem: Agencies and web designers were having trouble creating an appropriate online presence for this Chicago startup. 

The Solution: I stepped outside my original role as UX designer for their product suite, and opened up my dusty Art Direction box. I understood the brand, company and users well, having worked with them for quite some time by this point, and delivered a website that was both visually stunning, and mobile-friendly website. I unveiled the unauthorized design at a company meeting, after complaints about the current direction came up. Everybody at the company, including executive management, was thrilled with the new look! 

To really work with the needs of the company, I built the site using HubSpot as the CMS, learning their system and building custom templates for the site. HubSpot allowed the marketing team to work on creating their own content, and to track and monitor their marketing efforts.


Curbside Foodies

The Problem: Food truck foodies relied on looking out the window, or inaccurate apps to try and track and follow their favorite food trucks, while getting lunch in the city. Apps out there simply grabbed food truck location from twitter posts, which could be off by as much as 2 miles.

Our Solution: We worked directly with food truck operators to get them sign up to our service, and used their phone's GPS to track them accurately. The big payoff for them was in marketing data: they coudl track what foods were popular at what locations at what time of day.

I started working on my startup, Curbside Foodies with Mike, Michele and Todd, and we needed a slick iPhone app and branding. After a half dozen pages of sketches, I struck on the design - by accident. I had initially tossed the idea, but the sketch was still visible on a scan that had another sketch on it which I had wanted to show the team. Everybody liked the concept, and after a few rounds of polish and revisions, we now have what you see here!

The app itself came through many rounds of iterating with the team, and talking with customers. I designed a simple UI for iOS which would help gourmet food truck operators run their business more efficiently, while also helping consumers find their favorite food trucks more accurately.

I also designed and built a Drupal website.

Interesting research finding: Truck Owners don't want their drivers to use Facebook, even if only as a means of authentication for the app.

Live Events Website

The Problem: This Content Direct client didn't feel like they were engaging their users enough. Their events website was barebones, and just had a countdown timer and then streaming video of the event. They wanted to use our product to engage audiences better.

The Solution: We modified our product to "widgetize" the experience, to include more than just a single event and associated descriptions. We included clips related to the event, and were able to embed live twitter and facebook feeds, including back and forth question-answers from characters and audience, during the live event. The new design was also more modern and visually engaging than their previous live events website. 

I created a comprehensive design guide, walking people through the new flows and functionality, and created HTML and CSS for a demo implementation. WWE loved the design and the new ideas, and began to engage Content Direct on the new products.

By solving existing problems with the current product, and imagining new possibilities for the future, my pitch was accepted by the client.

Craft Beer Website

When I first moved to Chicago from Florida, I knew I would have plenty of difficulty with the change of environment. I'm an outdoors guy. I love the beach. Scuba diving is unlike any other activity on the planet. Year round summer vacation. Yes, it was hard. But I did know that the midwest has one thing going for it: Beer.

So, when I moved out here, I decided I would track down the agencies that do work for my favorite brewskies. And that's how I got in touch with Jacobson Rost. They do the design work for a bunch of Miller brands, including Killian's and Leinenkugel. This was the first project I took that was just front end development. I worked with another developer on this, doing HTML, CSS and JQuery on top of .NET.

Desktop Media Player

The Problem: People were becoming accustomed to viewing movies without removable media. They wanted to watch videos on all their devices, from anywhere. Production companies needed new solutions to keep their content from being pirated, yet make it easy for their customers to watch movies everywhere.

Our solution involved creating multiple apps users could install on various computers and devices. DVDs and BluRays would come with a url and code to enter. On entering the code, users would be able to stream or download the video, and install the player automatically, if it was detected that it wasn't installed already. Movies would stream to the user encrypted and rights-managed.

Working directly with the UX team of this world-famous production company, we modified our white-label desktop AIR media player application for Disney's KeyChest integration. Their brand guidelines and user interaction patterns from their website had to be transferred over into our own design. I created wireframes and flows, as well as visual design of the final app.

This application was rolled out in early 2013.

CSG International

  • Interactive prototypes with real XAML assetsStoryboardPersona developmentUsability test planIntegrating UX as part of the processDesign guides and standards for scalability

CSG International supplies the largest telecoms in America and the world with a call center and billing application suite. As UX Lead, I was tasked with making the redesign of our flagship product mean something. The company never had user experience design as part of their process.

To find out where to start, I needed a good story. I got my story after jetting around the country to various call centers and watched reps in their natural environment. Listening in on phone calls, watching them use their systems, and following up with interviews, I gathered enough data to create personas of typical users, to help build empathy and rapport amongst the rest of the product teams and management.

I identified goals to shoot for: Lower call time, reduction in error rate, reduciton in training time, and increased sales.

I created wireframes and hifi prototypes in Microsoft Expression Blend SketchFlow, creating usable Silverlight UI assets for developers. I created an exhaustive 98-page design guide to evangelize best practices and standards across the development teams scattered throughout the country. I also pitched executives on the importance of usability testing to provide validation of design decisions.

Shortly after, the project changed directions, and I left the role to join a different division, Content Direct.

Interesting research finding: Customer Service Reps are generally quite smart and cunning, able to make sales in situations most wouldn't even think possible. Also, geographic location played a big role in a caller's cynicism, and if they'd likely be upsold or not.

Organic Bikes

  • Art Direction for wisconsin bamboo bicycle website

Provided Art Direction and Front End XHTML and CSS for a bamboo bicycle manufacturer.

I had worked with this client before, on the Cycling Closeouts ecommerce website redesign, and the guys there loved my work then. So this time around, they gave me free reign. They told me the general idea, we hammered out the specs, and they told me to just design something nice. They had amazing photography and their bamboo bikes are beautifully crafted. They loved it!