Writings, Publications, and Blogs by Me

City Shades of Gray: Provoking Unconventional Perspectives

Shortly after the start of my Code for America fellowship, I wrote this piece for Civic Quarterly publication, inspired by the emotionally charged and controversial topic of my fellowship project: trust between police and the community. It is about solving problems by deferring judgement, asking questions, and seeking understanding when it seems like conversations are especially polarized.

Published in Issue 3 of Civic Quarterly for Spring 2015

Police Data: What do people want?

Where does distrust between police and the community begin, and how might we repair it? This is an article I wrote detailing one research exercise I did with residents in Vallejo. We wanted to learn about the type of information they were interested in having that might help rebuild their trust in the police department.

Published in Code for America Blog on 5/19/15

Doing: a powerful force for change

During week two of our 2015 Code for America Fellowship, the fellows and I jumped feet first into “Build Week.” The goal? Work together with our teams and build something — anything — together. My team, Team Vallejo, sought to learn more about our city’s focus area, safety and justice, and pick a small thing to build as a hypothesis for the rest of the year. I was completely inspired by one Vallejo community's collaborative efforts to take their safety in their own hands and work together to repair their neighborhood.

Published in Code for America Blog on 1/26/15

Usability and User Experience, Decoded

During my time at Omniupdate, one of my main goals was to act as a user experience evangelist and bring user-centered practices to the company. I often was asked to explain the difference between usability and user experience, so I decided to write a blog about it here and share it with everyone in the Omniupdate network.

Published in Omniupdate Blog on 10/22/14

The Plague of Rationalism and Business as Usual

As a human centered designer, social scientist, and behaviorist, I often stress the importance of building systems to support human needs, motivations, and emotions. In this article, I disucss Romanticism and Rationalism as models for designful experiences that don't quite reach any particular audience because they fail to build empathy for their users.

Published in My Medium Blog on 12/10/13

Design Think Yourself

We forget, in the daze of all this excitement of design thinking, design research, innovation, technology and social entrepreneurship, that we must also prose the same fearless questions to ourselves. In this piece I talk about how to use design thinking to reenvision yourself.

Published in My Medium Blog on 10/3/13