After An Event Apart

An Event ApartIs the term “radio silence” too anachronistic for the Web age? Whether or not it is, I inadvertently fell into a kind of radio silence recently here at Subtraction.com, and for that I apologize to regular readers. Partly, it was due to the fact that last week was very pleasantly halved by the extra-long Fourth of July weekend — it seemed like the ideal time to kick back, so I took a kind of an unscheduled holiday away from this blog. The other part of it was I was busy preparing for a speaking appearance at An Event Apart New York.

An Event Apart Badge

If It Ain’t Spoke…

I’d never been to any of the previous AEA’s, but I kind of had an idea what to expect: the whole enterprise focuses on Jeffrey Zeldman and Eric Meyer’s particular, cross-disciplinary approach to technology, and its tone is an outgrowth of the exceedingly down-to-earth and approachable personalities of these two giants of their field. So I had expected to find a friendly, informative and eclectic program of speakers and topics. And that’s exactly how it was; I’m glad, too, because I put in a bit of extra effort to tailor a presentation specifically for that audience, one that really relied on having AEA’s particular mix of high-level design thinkers and roll-up-your sleeve style design practitioners in the same audience.

I wasn’t quite sure how it would come off, but at the very least, several really nice folks in the audience gave me quite positive feedback afterwards. At any rate, I had an excellent time presenting and also sitting in the audience — the other speakers were all terrific (at least the ones I saw on Monday, as I couldn’t attend Tuesday’s sessions due to work).

Attendees can get a slightly abridged version of the slideshow I prepared for the conference for download. I’m thinking about making it available here, too, but I also plan to give a modified version of the same talk at some future engagements. So what I might do instead is start to outline a few of the concepts that I touched upon in upcoming blog posts. Just as a quick summary, though, my talk outlined a typical day in my personal and professional life, how design figures into most all of it, and my approach to getting all of it done. More to come…

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  1. Your AEA presentation was fantastic. Lucid, focused, and illuminating. It got a lot of practical ideas percolating in the back of my mind. Again, can’t thank you enough for all the great info.

  2. Wow, thanks so much for that feedback, David. I’m really happy that it was well-received and people found it offered some useful insights. And it was great to meet you afterwards!

  3. I was just wondering if it was intentional to have the sub-heading read “It It Ain’t Spoke…” instead of “If It Ain’t Spoke…” which seems to make much more sense to me.

    Also, I just now realized the reason you use the addition sign to denote the end of your posts… and it made me laugh.

    Thanks so much for everything.

  4. Ack, thanks for catching that typo. I’m actually still kind of exhausted from the whole event, so I dashed off that post late last night. Fixed now!

  5. khoi, your talk at AEA was perfect. i don’t know why it was so interesting to hear how many times you had social engagements in the month of june, but it did put things in perspective! seriously, thanks for the insights and the real advice – i had some great take-aways.

  6. The presentation really was very well done. I found your approach to “mandatory” extracurricular activities at work particularly inspiring, and got some great ideas from it. Bravo!

  7. Thanks Beth and Rob. We’re working hard to make NYTimes.com a great place to do design, so anytime I can share some of the philosophies driving that effort, I’m happy to do it — especially if it might inspire others to do the same.