Karelia Jo Moore

Experience Lead at Huge

Karelia Jo Moore

Experience Lead at Huge Episode 42

Episode Notes

Episode Transcript

Gary:
Hello, and welcome to Episode Forty two of Design Edu Today, the podcast series discussing what is necessary to be a successful designer in a contemporary screen-based interactive world. I am your host, Gary Rozanc, Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

In this episode, we will be discussing what makes User Experience Design different from Interactive Design. We will also discuss the User Experience Design process and how it fits into the overall design process. We finish up the conversation talking about the specific User Experience Design principles Design Educators should be teaching to Interactive Design students.

Today’s guest is Karelia Jo Moore. Karelia leads Interaction Design on everything from new business to product visions to full site redesigns at the Washington DC office of Huge. As an Experience lead, some of her clients have included The White House, NBC Universal, American Student Assistance, Erie Insurance, Pfizer and Target. Prior to Huge, Karelia had a past life as a Visual Designer in New York, Chicago and Atlanta. She is passionate about using design to further civic engagement and facilitate better lives. Karelia holds a BFA in Visual Communication and a BA in Communication from the University of Arizona and a Graduate Certificate in Design from the Portfolio Center in Atlanta.

Welcome, Karelia.

Karelia:
Hey, how are you?
Gary:
Great. Thanks for joining me. My guest today, Karelia, she came all the way from…well she came all the way out to UMBC so we’re recording it on my campus. So, before I get into specific questions, I want to let the listeners know the impetus for this and future episodes. During past episodes, I’ve been focusing on what I consider to be the nuts and bolts of what it takes to be a successful visual designer today. However, I’ve touched on a lot of other professions to determine for myself what is the ideal balance of those professions to make a great visual designer. There’s one profession in particular that comes up on a regular basis that I want to explore further, and that’s User Experience Design. I want to explore this job title more because it’s a really hard one to consistently define. All the UX job descriptions I’ve seen range wildly from a visual designer who researches the end user before designing, to researchers who hand off their findings to Information Architects and Visual Designers. So, this leads to my first question for Karelia, as an Experience Lead, what is your personal definition of User Experience?
Karelia:
OK, so User Experience to me is just kind of an umbrella term for lots of different areas of expertise, so I came up as an Interaction Designer, so basically kind of my elevator pitch for that is I just design the way digital things should function, the way that people use them, so whether that’s user flows or actual interfaces, things like that, that all kind of falls into Interaction Design to me. And I guess in terms of actually I really kinda hate the title, User Experience Designer because I feel like an experience is something that’s so subjective and it’s what you personally experience, so I can’t design necessarily what that is. What I can design is the very concrete interaction that you’re going to have or I can help determine what content is going to show up that you’re going to read, that contributes to your experience, or a visual designer might…they’re going to put the aesthetic on what it is that you’re seeing and that you ultimately experience so I think User Experience Designer is just a really soft term for me, but those very concrete areas of expertise are what I think are actual real job roles, if that makes sense?
Gary:
Yeah, I’m going to stumble around and try to remember an exact wording you used, because you said you…oh man, how did you describe it? Because you didn’t…I wanted to follow it up with…you said you create, I don’t want to use the word experience because you didn’t use the word experience, but you said that you…
Karelia:
I design interactions.
Gary:
Yes. But you…like the actual…you talked about it from a very physical standpoint. Not a visual standpoint, so I felt like there was a distinction there.
Karelia:
Yeah, so I mean where I work it is a distinction: we have a Visual Design…my background is in Visual Design but the way that it works at Huge is that our Interaction Designers are very much focused on user flows and determining how is the user going to accomplish this goal that they need to accomplish? Which is something very concrete to me and then we work very closely with Visual Designers to determine what that look and feel is like and how it actually visually manifests, if that makes sense…
Gary:
Yes it does.
Karelia:
So yeah, those are two separate things at Huge; we work very closely together but those are separate whereas at a small place you might have somebody that’s doing the entire thing there, I think at smaller companies you tend to…which makes sense, you have people who tend to do a lot of everything and touch all parts and actually do all parts of the experience and then as you get to larger companies as it is at Huge you get definitely more kind of siloed…not siloed…you get expertise so that kind of really focuses on one protocol.
Gary:
All right, so you’ve already started answering this, so this is the next question on the list anyway is, can you pick a typical web project and describe how you and the UX team at Huge fit into that project from start to finish?
Karelia:
Yeah, I can…I know everybody says this: there’s no typical project. So, it depends on…OK, so let’s pick maybe like a typical website redesign. So, the way that it works at, if you think about like strategy, design and then actual implementation. The way that Interaction Designers fit into that is that in the strategy phase, I would say if we want to break this down into primary and secondary roles, we have our Product Strategy. We work very closely with our Product Managers who do strategy as well as they’ll come back in the implementation phase but Product Managers are usually primary and UX is secondary in terms of who’s owning deliverables at that point. So, that’s stakeholder interviews, doing user research, things like that, we kind of tag-team on that but I would say that probably our Product Managers are primary. Then when we get into the design phase which includes wire-framing and actual visual design, things like that, we work very closely with Visual Design and I would say that UX is more primary in that second phase when we’re actually starting to concept and create things, so we have a concepting phase as well as kind of a detailed design phase where things get more concrete and we go into requirements and things like that, so UX is very involved in that and then the actual implementation work goes into development. UX is still involved but it’s more going back to that Product Manager who’s playing the primary role to kind of go a little bit deeper.

I’d say my favorite part of it probably is the upfront and really thinking about conceptually what this thing could be and what we’re really trying to solve; we always conduct user research, whether that’s something that’s just kind of down and dirty testing that might not involve a recruit or anything like that but we always try to talk to users and actually get into the mindset of the people who are actually using it. And then we’re also very heavily involved again in that stakeholder…those stakeholder interviews and then I think what’s great about coming out of that is the conceptual part of it where I like to say if it were magic, how would it work? And it’s something that might not be able to be implemented in the next year or two; we actually try not to do that, we try to think and kind of future-proof it and think about really ideally what would this experience be and then we can always kind of peel it back from there and go back from there. Am I making sense?

Gary:
You’re definitely making sense!
Karelia:
Yeah, so that’s probably my favorite part is the concepting part of it, if you have a really brave client, it’s kind of one of the highlights of the…one of the key parts, times of the project and then we kind of decide from there, OK, we’re all set on this vision and kind of where we want to go: let’s road-map it out and figure out exactly what we can do now and what will come in future phases, so yeah…
Gary:
You mentioned a term; you said Product Manager. So, what is a Product Manager? Is that the same thing as a Project Manager? Or are they different?
Karelia:
They are different. So, Project Managers are really focused on, to be honest, the bottom line, keeping things on budget and schedule. Our Product Managers do work very closely with Project Managers but Product Managers are concerned with the business, at least as a consultant at Huge, that’s what their focus is, it’s definitely different probably in-house. But Product Managers are focused on making sure that business goals and user goals are aligning and that we’re making a product that makes sense, that’s meeting requirements on both sides. I will say, I call it the buddy system at Huge, while Product Managers are really more aligned with business goals and really knowing business goals, which I would be as well, but my focus is on the user, so we kind of work together to manage this.
Gary:
OK, so based on that definition then, this comes to the root of the problem that I actually have as an educator and that is, in a graphic design program where they’re meant to make logos and buttons and things like that, there’s not really an emphasis on, are those things that you are creating visually, are they meeting the business goals? And to me I think that is the ultimate problem in a Graphic Design program. So, just based on your experience, because you’ve worked at other places besides Huge, just from what you’ve seen, how much, answer it however you want to, but how much do you think Visual Designers, the Digital Designers, whatever term you want to use for that, Graphic Designers: how best should they be informed of the business and goals that they’re trying to achieve?
Karelia:
I think Visual Designers need to know and understand the key goals of a project, key business goals of a project. They need to understand the users of a project because you can’t…you can’t design something…it’s not design without having those things in mind, period; you’re not just doing this for the fun of it, it needs to map back and it needs to reflect everything from layouts to color and things like that, that’s a little bit more subjective; usually that’s given to us by the brand name folks at clients that we work with, but they do need to understand those things; they need to understand systems a lot, they need to understand, I think, really what…the visual needs to be…the design needs to be a visual manifestation of a strategy that’s already been set forth, essentially, so how we present things a lot is, we’ll tee up design in a client presentation with strategy and everything we’re saying in the strategy, we need to make sure that everything in the design is mapping back to that, so it’s really important that they understand both business goals, user goals and actual KPIs that we’re using for the project.
Gary:
What is…I think I know what KPI is…
Karelia:
I’m sorry: Key Performance Indicators.
Gary:
Yes!
Karelia:
So, whatever we’re tracking in analytics: it could be how many people are clicking on this call to action, this CTA, or how much time are people spending on this page; it varies from project to project but yeah, whatever it is there’s usually two, maybe three things that we’re really focusing on to determine that yes, this project was a success, so everything needs to map back to that.
Gary:
So, the way you’re describing the Product Manager, this has just popped into my head that it would be fantastic if I could go over to the Business…because every University, students have to take general electives and so it’d be3 really nice if there was a course that was kind of centered on the key business goals and determining them and…would that make sense?
Karelia:
Oh yeah…no, totally, working…yeah, no: partnering with people who are in B-School and kind of making their projects a little more real. Yeah, I think that would totally be an awesome collaboration.
Gary:
OK, I just wanted to make sure…I was asking that more to make sure I understood….
Karelia:
Yeah, yeah…
Gary:
…what was happening. OK, so OK, one more follow-up to that. Do you see entry level students if you’ve come across them in your experiences: not entry level students, entry level designers or that are just entering the field. Do they have a problem? Is it hard for them to…I got to make this match the business goal, or are they still kind of designing personally for themselves?
Karelia:
I think…I think it’s good to have a….OK, so when you’re just coming out of school, no, you’re not expected to be inherently just married to these goals and really knowing them; I think you should have a lead that definitely does and that is helping steer you in the right direction and helping align their thinking to these business goals and I think it’s probably at that level, at an entry level, you probably are kind of sticking to what you know in terms of aesthetic and your process and things like that and that’s fine; you’re not expected to be an expert or to really know these things but as long as they’re grasping it and kind of growing into starting…they’ll feel like you’re thinking, we’ll kind of graduate to when you’re critiquing yourself: oh, OK, oh, that’s right, we’re tracking this thing over here or, oh, that’s right, the main goal of this page is to communicate X-Y-Z or it’s for the user to click on, you know, A-B-C over here, so you grow to kind of making that an inherent thing to remember but I feel like entry level, a lot of times it’s you’re kind of falling back to your own design style and that’s fine, you should have a good lead there to mentor you to get you out of that.
Gary:
OK. I think just one thing that I’m going to take away from this is the KPI. I think I’m actually going to put that in…I’m going to put certain KPI in every design brief I give to the students…
Karelia:
Oh sure, yeah.
Gary:
…so they can always go…I can always go back: is it meeting that? Is the visual meeting that?
Karelia:
Yeah, it’s really easy to spin if you don’t, especially, does Visual Design, it’s a subjective thing and it is, but that’s what makes it design is that goal you’re trying to meet.
Gary:
And so as long as they have the goal in mind I think that’s…even if it doesn’t meet the goal, that’s what’s school’s for.
Karelia:
Yeah!
Gary:
Not the real world. All right, so you were also an Interaction Designer at a previous job. Is that different from a User Experience Designer?
Karelia:
Actually, my experience, I’ve kind of come up through Huge. I was a Visual Designer…I say in my past life, but yeah, so the way it works at Huge is you’re an Interaction Designer, then Senior Interaction Designer and then Experience Lead, whatever that means, titles for whatever, but Interaction Design is just kind of…I still consider myself an Interaction Designer and when I speak on panels and things like that, I say I’m an Interaction Designer so there’s no real difference, it’s just kind of level of seniority, to be honest. So it’s the same thing, it’s just…
Gary:
OK, that’s fair enough, because every place has a different…everybody’s using different terms, so trying to narrow in on the consensus is what I hope to get at eventually.
Karelia:
Yeah, and to be clear, it’s definitely added responsibility, just in terms of being client facing as you move from an ID to being a Senior Interaction Designer, that means you’re more client-facing now and there’s a certain level of work and speed kind of expected and then as you move up to Lead then that’s more on, but at the root of it, we’re all Interaction Designers.
Gary:
OK, so, as the Experience Lead I’m going to assume that you lead or direct a few Experience Designers. So, based on those experiences, for you what would make for a good educational background for a UX designer? What kind of training do you want them to have?
Karelia:
So…well, I will say…I mean, it comes from lots of different backgrounds; there are obviously actual formal programs now that are interaction design programs but we’ve had people that have Architecture backgrounds, that have…I’ve come from a Visual Design background; Library Science, Information Architects where they’re just really concerned with information design organization and things like that, so I’d really say…I don’t really care about your background: I just care that you can think, that you can think through problems and that you are detail-oriented and are thinking about systems and kind of no…I hate…empathy, I feel like is so played; I hate saying that word! Empathy is…oh…yeah, but that you’re able to understand someone else’s world view, that you can kind of understand mental models and how other people think of things because, surprise, your way of thinking of things is not everyone’s, so yeah, I mean I was not formally trained in UX: I didn’t even know what UX was; I found it on Twitter one day! So I got my job at Huge by really just displaying a thought process and kind of thinking through something that I was pissed about and I thought I could design something better and so…education is great, obviously, I think college offers a lot and formal programs obviously offer a lot but at the end of the day, I need you to be able to think through a problem very strategically and really thoroughly.
Gary:
I’m glad you said that and this is one thing I’ve been wanting to get off my chest for ever is…
Karelia:
Go for it!
Gary:
Use of the word empathy. Because it’s a bandwagon now,
Karelia:
It’s so played…
Gary:
Like “Citizen Designer” was, which I used because I know people respond to it but it’s not empathy if you’re…everybody should be empathetic towards other people
Karelia:
Yeah, I hope so, you’re a human!
Gary:
So it’s not empathy: it’s that…you said it. It’s the strategic analysis of someone else’s situation…
Karelia:
…else’s way of…yeah.
Gary:
You can, whether you have empathy or not, you can still strategically go and do that measurement; you don’t have to be empathetic to do it, it’s not teaching you empathy, it’s how to analyze a situation, so I think we get caught up in this…we need to be teaching empathy…we need to be teaching a strategic process. So anyway….
Karelia:
And Psychology is another…Cognitive Psychology is another…
Gary:
Thank you, yeah! I tell my students when I do advising they’re like…well, what general electives should I take? I say, Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, any of those things if you take those, just learn the study of human behavior.
Karelia:
Yeah, and I will say one thing, just in terms of yes, and I think the one thing that I’m personally exploring more is actual…so I’m the implementation side when you think about the things that you’re designing, so as an interaction designer, I’m often thinking about, OK, this content is going to show up on the page because of these certain variables and so content strategy is one thing where it’s the actual just like really kind of technical aspect of an experience, for lack of better words. Learning taxonomies and learning how things are actually going to manifest within a project or within something that you’ve designed is something that I feel like would be helpful to know, like CMSs and things like that, just kind of, it’s nitty-gritty but I think it might be helpful.
Gary:
So, two things that I wanted to follow up on and the first one you don’t have to give much answer to this one, but you’re now the second person that I’ve heard say, Library Sciences in relation to User Experience. I don’t get it!
Karelia:
Oh, so it’s just all about how you organize things, so I think people with probably Information Architecture backgrounds might have Library Science training or gone to school for Library Science, but it’s really just about organizing things and systemizing things in a way that’s strategic and makes sense so if you nerd out on spreadsheets and really, I don’t know if you saw my journal here but I have a system for even how I…shout out to Bullet Journal if anybody Bullet Journals out there, that’s what I’m putting Gary to, but just even having a system so that it’s just organization really, at the heart of it, which is super-helpful when you’re designing complex websites or products or…
Gary:
And that led to my next question that I had. You said the word systems a couple of times, so I just want to make sure, because when I think of systems, I think of Atomic Design and I think of this bucket of elements that go to create a website; I don’t think you’re talking about systems in exactly the same way.
Karelia:
Yeah, so when I…OK, so…when I think of systems, I guess it’s the overall experience…so what I try to get across to Junior Interaction Designers is that this one thing you’re doing here, you’re not just creating this component here, it actually lives in all these different places, so you need to be aware of the system in order to know how what you’re doing in this one specific use case is going to affect all these other use cases, so it’s just an understanding of, sure, you’re designing this one thing right here, but really it’s just a piece of a system that you really need to be sure you understand, so whether that’s, I think for Visual Designers it’s when you develop a style guide it’s like, OK, all the buttons are going to look this way and when they’re active they look this way; when they’re inactive they look this way and there’s a system for that, a visual system and on the Interaction Design side it’s from functionality like our drop-downs are going to operate this way or if it’s a carousel, it’s going to operate this way or…hopefully you’re not using carousels, but yeah, so I don’t know if that’s answered your question but…
Gary:
No, that answered it. So, this is probably a big question and you’ve already touched on it a little bit but as an educator, I’m starting to wrestle with the idea, does there need to be a distinct UX or Interaction undergraduate program separate from a Visual Design or Graphic Design program?
Karelia:
Yes.
Gary:
And so…you just said yes, you think there should be. Roughly what would the two look like? What makes them different?
Karelia:
So, just thinking about the first thing that comes to mind is just fundamentals, and I’m probably going to renege on what I said after I say this but, for a Visual Designer, fundamentals you think of things like grids and typography and hierarchy, visual hierarchy. Some of those are the same for UX as well and I’ll talk about what I think is different at Huge in just a moment, but the fundamentals for an Interaction Designer are just it’s understanding user flows, it’s understanding mental models, it’s understanding just kind of the basics of understanding a user and how you look at somebody who’s going to use a digital thing or whatever it is, who’s going to use something, so it’s a little bit it’s kind of a buffet of understanding a little bit of psychology, understanding some systems, understanding a little bit of visual design as well I think because those things are communicating, and wireframes: if you put a button really small to a Visual Designer that’s going to mean, oh, that’s not that important but we need to understand when we’re doing wireframes, there is hierarchy there, we do need to understand typography and things like that as well, but it’s still a fairly different skill-set and as you grow in either one, whether it’s Interaction Design or Visual Design, I think you’re going to start crossing over in understanding the other practice a little bit better and how each informs one another but I do think the fundamentals are very different. Different but related!
Gary:
Yeah, no, that completely makes sense and I think that the one thing with the Interaction Designer, they also need to have enough understanding of visual design to know…
Karelia:
Oh, totally…
Gary:
…the goals are being met with it so they can inform and then vice-versa…
Karelia:
Yeah, totally.
Gary:
…the Visual Designer needs to understand interaction enough to know that hey, is this thing meeting the goals? But so it sounds like just trying to find one person to do both of those things competently is going to be kinda hard.
Karelia:
Yeah, I mean, there are unicorns, they exist out there in some places and I think where I am actually, we have some Interaction Designers that again, if they have Visual Design backgrounds they can kind of do both. We have some Interaction Designers that are also Front End Developers and know code and they’re kind of our Prototyping rock stars and there are some that are more into kind of deeper implementation that understand and that might align more closely with what a Product Manager does, so we have some twofers, for sure, and it’s always you’re going to become that as you progress in your career but understanding those fundamentals that are very different is important.
Gary:
That’s going to be a big problem for design education, interaction education to handle that because then you also mentioned the Front End Development too; that’s really closely related to the other two enough that…
Karelia:
Well, actually I see that it’s a little…that one I feel like is a little more separate. I was just specifically…at Huge we just do have people that are interested in coding and they can just kind of make their interactions a little more real. But I think…when you’re starting out and I was this way a lot, you’re not going to be able to do everything at once and I think it’s OK to really focus and hunker down on one…if you’re going to be an Interaction Designer, focus on that, focus on being the best Interaction Designer that you can be and then if you want to kind of move out into Visual Design, that’s fine, but I think for educators and for…I don’t know, I don’t think it’s necessary to try to marry the two so early on; collaborations are fine and great but if your focus for one class or for one course is going to be…doesn’t have to be Interaction Design and Visual Design unless it’s like a basics or something like that, I don’t know if this is making sense but I think I would feel like the goal would be to just really focus on one or the other and when it makes sense to weave in, maybe for a Capstone class or something like that and have people kind of work together but it’s really I would be looking for a very clear, just as someone who’s involved in hiring, I would be looking for a really clear demonstration of a certain skill-set: if you’re interested in others, great, or if you are showing that…oh, I’m an Interaction Designer and a Visual Designer, you’d better really kick ass because if it’s like, don’t show it if it’s going to be, oh I was just trying to do so much, and it’s like no, just focus on the Interaction Design aspect of this project then and save the Visual Design for something else. If that makes sense.
Gary:
Yeah, I think a better way for me to articulate my thought process is I think design education needs to now make the decision, do they want to have a solely…they want to start thinking about in addition to having a Visual Design program, do they also want to have a UX or Interaction Design program? Do they want to start thinking about making one of those because there’s not a lot of them out there and from this podcast, everybody who…very few of them who’ve said, that I’ve identified as either Interaction or UX, said they went to school for it, so that to me screams that there’s a need.
Karelia:
Yeah, yeah, I think…I guess the birthplace of Interaction Design is human computer interaction which Carnegie Mellon is really well known for but other than…and to my understanding, if anybody’s out there listening from Carnegie Mellon, I apologize if I’m incorrect on this but kind of my perception of it, I think you’d go to a program like that if you’re interested in also doing maybe Industrial Design or actual designing physical products; it’s like, human factors, it’s like really, really the birth of Interaction Design which is more digitally focused so yea, to that end, there aren’t a lot of programs…
Gary:
…at the undergraduate level.
Karelia:
Yeah, right.
Gary:
There are a lot of Master levels; we have one at UMBC, so…Human Centered Computing.
Karelia:
But yeah, I think having…I see your point and I think it’s a fair point.
Gary:
It’s time for us to figure that out. So, one follow-up question now before I let you go because I don’t want to take up too much more of your time. But this is a standard question I’m going to start asking everybody and it’s the one thing that I’m struggling with so I’m looking for ways to solve it for myself in the classroom. So, one problem I continually see in student portfolios is their inability to not make design decisions based on their own personal aesthetic, so now matter how hard I think education tries, students always default to designing for their own personal aesthetic. Organically is UX or ID, that process, is there something that’s part of it that could help them break free from that mold of Visual Designers designing for themselves, I guess?
Karelia:
Yeah, I think…well that’s kind of human nature is to kind of stay close to what we know. I think to break out of that, it is good to have an idea of who you’re really designing for, so if the project is rooted in trying to solve a real problem, if you’re designing something for a forty-five year old suburban mother of three, your hipster design aesthetic probably is not the right fit for that, you know what I mean? But it’s a very…but you’re solving for a very concrete thing: it’s a forty-give to whatever, fifty year old mother living in suburbia and whatever, you know what I mean? Trying to establish and pin down exactly the problem that you’re trying to solve I think will help with whatever manifestation of that solution is and therefore even the visual designer bit so the projects are structured but I would maybe encourage students to decide what it is that they’re trying to solve, really define that problem, which it out, pin it down somewhere where it’s not going to change and shift because, oh, you had this great idea that OK, that’s great and it looks beautiful but it’s not solving the real proble3m. So yeah, I’d just define the problem, write it out, be as specific as possible and that’ll help give you some guardrails to really create a solution that visually matched…it’s just going to be your beacon.
Gary:
Just one anecdote. I think, and it just occurred to me while you were talking about that is that also a part of the problem with the students is being…the self-confidence to know that their design decision is the right one and I’m going to give an example: I had a student that was redesigning; she was doing a blog for early elementary educators and she started using Comic Sans!
Karelia:
Noooo! OK, first of all, never in life is Comic Sans the right decision.
Gary:
But then I said…and so she started going down this path of… OK, so let’s go look at a third grade classroom and then when she started looking at third grade classrooms, her design matched the aesthetic of what a third grade classroom looks like and so then Comic Sans, we can find other ways, other…
Karelia:
But it’s for…it was a blog for educators, right?
Gary:
For ideas for things to use in the classroom for projects, so then what do…so she designed these project sheets that would go to the kids…
Karelia:
OK, now that I could see maybe…well still, Comic Sans…kids don’t need to be learning Comic Sans. I’m kidding!
Gary:
The moral of the story is that she was designing something that look terrible to the aesthetic of the hipster designer, but to a three…but to somebody in Third Grade, that is perfectly appropriate, and she didn’t have the…it took all semester for her to have the confidence to believe, no, this is the right visual…
Karelia:
No, I thought you meant she was designing the blog that the educators were going to…the blog in Comic Sans, the actual…the blog in Comic Sans, just because an educator…OK, I got you, the materials that would eventually go, the end user was a third grade student: sure, sure.
Gary:
Yes, and so it took a while for me to remember the project but she designed a blog and then she also had…she really designed lesson plans for the educators and we put the blog around it and so it was the design decisions on the lesson plans was she had a real tough time reconciling that I want to be a hipster designer…well no!
Karelia:
No but hey, third graders….
Gary:
It was a confidence issue.
Karelia:
…Yeah, yeah…
Gary:
So much…anyway, we started going off there. All right, so the last question then. Is there anything that I ask all the guests and you can still feel free to say no, but is there anything that you are personally working on that you want to share with us, that you’re excited about or any final words of wisdom for us?
Karelia:
Oh…personally I’m excited about some of the potential for…I’m not personally doing it but some of the…I have an interest in financial education and helping people understand money and things like that because I think it’s probably personally I don’t understand it so we have some exciting opportunities right now and in government around finance and things like that that we’re working on.
Gary:
That’s part of Huge?
Karelia:
Yeah, oh, sorry, at Huge, yeah. Oh, yes! So, this wasn’t my project but I am super-proud of the team that just re-designed NHTSA.gov
Gary:
The what?
Karelia:
NHTSA, the National Highway Transportation Safety something or other…Authority.
Gary:
We’ll look it up and put it in the show notes.
Karelia:
Yeah, and it’s a .gov. It is a super-fucking-awesome website that it was a labor of love I know for that team and it’s a site that hopefully the information on it is going to really save lives; I think it’s beautifully designed. When you look at it you’re like…oh, this is a Government website! So yeah, that’s something I’m…well, I didn’t work on it: I’m super excited about and shout out to the team who did that.
Gary:
Is it live yet?
Karelia:
It is live, yeah, you can go to it right now: it’s awesome.
Gary:
Cool, because one of my last guests, they were working on a website for Title Nine which has to do with violence on campus towards women and a bunch of other things too, anyway, but the site hadn’t gone live yet, so I saw the preview of it, so we were talking about it in the abstract.
Gary:
Well, that’s all we have time for today on Episode forty-two of Design Edu Today. I want to thank today’s guest, Karelia Jo Moore, for being so generous with her time. I want to thank the audience for listening and I want to thank the Design Edu Today hosting sponsor, Digital Ocean, and CDN sponsor Fastly, for making the hosting and distribution of these podcasts possible. I also want to thank the AIGA and the AIGA Design Educators’ Community for their generous support of my research that led to this podcast series.

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