IxDA SF Redux

This Saturday, I skipped P-Camp and went into San Francisco to see the Interaction Design gathering at Adapative Path‘s offices. (Photos)  I have to say, I was kind of disappointed.  P-Camp, last year was pretty dynamic with alot of energy and interesting talks.  The IxDA conference seemed really toned down and the presentations were mixed.  I enjoyed Ian Swinson (Salesforce) presenting on how Salesforce reinvented the design pattern process to be agile.  I also enjoyed Kim Goodwin from Cooper talking about the Interaction Design community.  She talked about how we are pretty un-diverse and need to mentor other designers and grow.  I whole-heartedly agree with Kim and will personally look for ways to mentor other designers.

After the presentation, Katie and I (plus kids) were lucky enough to get a private tour of Pixar Studios in Emeryville.  It was pure magic.  The storyboards on the walls, the clay maquettes, the artwork, the crazy offices people make out of their cubicles.  How wonderful it must be to work in that environment?  I wish my desk could be a tiki hut.

I took Kim Goodwin’s words to heart and mentored the people closest to me first, my kids.  I explained that ideas and crativity are special things.  They need special light and need to be treated carefully like a little ember.  If you treat those ideas right, they can flourish into a full blown flame and illuminate the world.  If you dismiss those ideas or pour cold water on them, they will extinguish with a poof.

Creativity is the soul of design.  Find ways to make your enviornment more creative and you will get more of these little sparks.  Put artwork on the walls.  Take breaks to just think about how your job could be better.  Think about how you think about thinking.  It was a fun Saturday overall.

And then Ethan threw up in his bed and the bathroom at midnight.  Hey, it can’t ALL be creativity and games, can it?

Whatya think?