Webstock 2012 flew by. Three days of workshops followed by two days of talks in Wellington, New Zealand, a windy and picturesque city.
My presentation was mostly new material. The video will be released in a few weeks, but here are a few highlights: I talked about how living without computers and the Internet in my early 20′s, coupled with being an introvert, affects how I view and think about interface and interaction design. I spoke a bit about working with publishers since the release of the iPad, and how existing products and interactions form mental models about how new products should work. I spoke about how the iPad, coupled with some native applications, present the first widely distributed examples of calm computing. And finally, how touch interactions and interface are rewiring our brains, changing the way we expect everything around us to work.
The conference touted a cast of characters who performed on a stage once graced by the Beatles. But the most remarkable thing about Webstock, was the design of the conference itself.
Every touch point, thoughtful. Every artifact, elegant.
Our lanyards were tiny books held together with a single grommet. Inside: Need to Know Information, a map of Wellington and the venue, and a conference schedule. Every table had power strips, pitchers of water, notepads and pens. On one side of the theater, a free coffee bar stocked with a full-time team of people making everyone espresso drinks. On the other side, a freezer stocked with ice cream and Popsicles. The on-stage sign language interpreters were a personal highlight, a reminder for the importance of accessibility in all of the work we make.
The feeling you’re left with is: Wellington is a city that has taste and loves design. And that Tashand Mike, the good-looking and smart founders of Webstock, want to make you more awesome at whatever it is that you do.
If you’d like to learn more about Jennifer Brook you can follow her on Twitter @jenniferbrook.