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Event Schedule

  1. Arrival Day

  2. Early registration/Badge pick-up

    Avoid the check-in line Monday morning by checking in Sunday night just outside the Fairfax Ballroom. We’ll be fully staffed to get you checked in for the event, and to answer any questions you might have. Be the first to get all the goodies and breeze straight into the ballroom the next morning!

  1. Day 1

  2. Attendee Event Check-in/Badge Pick-up

  3. Breakfast

  4. Morning Welcome

  5. The Fault, Dear Brutus (or: Career Advice From a Cranky Old Man)

    We have met the enemy, and he is us. Many of the professional problems we blame on boneheaded bosses and clueless coworkers actually come from ourselves. Identify career woes you bring on yourself, and learn to get out of your own way. Make yourself irreplaceable. For better meetings, better projects, and a better life, cultivate the professionally and emotionally healthy worker within. Plan for a long, deep career. See how improving your sales ability can make all the difference in your work and job. Employees, learn what to do when your work doesn’t reflect your best abilities. Freelancers, find out how to raise your profile and your rates. Master the side project, and use it to make deeper contacts in your community. Above all, free yourself to know (and speak) your mind. You’ll come away full of inspiring new ideas, and brimming with energy and enthusiasm for your work and the people it serves.

  6. Designing for Social Behavior

    Love it or loathe it, social media has been burned into everything we do. Once more, it’s fallen on the head of the trusty, multiple-hat-wearing web designer to become a social engineer. In addition to everything else we do, it’s now our job to design strategies and integrate them into our projects. It’s not just about connecting these services to our apps or websites. It’s about knowing how to craft together behaviors, user experience, and traditional design elements in a beautifully harmonious way that achieves business goals. From lessons learned while designing a large social network from scratch, and minus the overly familiar buzzwords and marketing cliches, Sarah will teach you how to truly engage with your users. Discover the real value of social media reciprocity, and learn how to make it work for you. Sarah’s design tips and tricks will help you get those vanity-pleasing, but not particularly helpful, Likes, Friends, and Followers to actually do something for your organization.

  7. Design Decisions Through the Lens of Performance

    We design sites for a myriad of devices with varying connection speeds. More and more, we’re discovering the importance of fast page speed. Even 100 millisecond delays in load times negatively impact user experience and conversions. The problem is, making a site fast and lightweight is often at odds with other design goals—like creating visually immersive experiences or meeting all of an organization’s rich-media ad requirements. While a stripped ­down site with no images, set entirely in Arial, is certainly going to be light, it’s not going to accomplish all of our client’s business goals. In this talk, we'll discuss how we can make smarter design decisions, from the beginning of a project, to ensure that our sites perform well. Some topics Yesenia will discuss are optimizing typography and UI, responsive images, and how to get clients on board.

  8. Modern Layouts: Getting Out of Our Ruts

    In the early years of the web, there was a lot of variation and experimentation with where to put content on a web page. Then, it seems, we all settled into a handful of patterns and stayed there for over a decade. It wasn’t until the arrival of responsive design that new ideas for page layout started appearing. Now with new CSS properties for layout landing in browsers, we may be about to see a bigger renaissance in layout design patterns. How can we better use the space inside the glass rectangle? What layout innovations could help users better find and focus on what they want? Take a walk through where we’ve been, where we might be going, and how we can better design for the true medium at hand. This talk features practical examples of what's newly possible, along with access to a code repo for you to play with later.

  9. Trees for the Forest: Designing the Details for Consistently Great User Interfaces

    Learn to fully appreciate the craft of designing for digital interfaces by examining the difference between design hacks and the real thing. We’ll unapologetically examine examples of bad user interface design as well as practical ways to tweak those designs to make them more effective. We’ll embrace subtle details by looking at how to design for contemporary aesthetic trends and user experience design patterns. Lastly, we’ll examine how design details impact the core intent, and we’ll see what it means in practice to add an extra 10% of UI polish to make a project truly great.

  10. Cohesive UX

    With the ever-increasing ubiquity of screens and devices, cohesiveness is progressively imperative to successful user experiences. Recent examples include the version notes in an update to the Apple Store app for iOS: “Now start shopping on one device and finish on another, or even on your Mac or PC.” Or the observation made by a tech news site following the redesign of Spotify: “Another key factor behind the design overhaul is for Spotify to feel familiar across all platforms.” There are countless other examples. This session examines what's required to deliver a cohesive, consistent user experience regardless of where the digital experience begins, continues, and ends.

  11. Opening Night Happy Hour

    Facebook Design is excited to announce they will be taking the conference happy hour off campus to the Caboose Brewing Company, from 5:45 – 9:00! Shuttles will be provided from the Sheraton to and from Caboose Brewery for safe and easy traveling. We will have tours of the Brewery, food, drinks and games! More details to come, but mark your calendars….

  1. Day 2

  2. Breakfast

  3. Morning Welcome

  4. Atomic Design

    Over the past few years, we’ve seen the web community create style tiles, element collages, style guides, pattern libraries, and a slew of other tools in order to break interfaces down to their atomic elements. Our interfaces are going more places than ever before, so this shift is essential to help us better understand what our websites consist of in order for us create smart, scalable, maintainable designs. This session will introduce atomic design, a methodology for creating robust design systems. We’ll cover how to apply atomic design to implement your very own design system in order to set you, your organization and clients up for success.

  5. Falling in Love with Forms

    Without forms, the web would not be what it is today, but they are challenging from a markup and styling standpoint. In this session, we'll explore forms from top to bottom, examining how they work and how their components can be incorporated with other elements to maximize accessibility, improve semantics, and allow for more flexible styling. You’ll get to see the complete picture with forms, including new HTML5 field types; validation, error messages & formatting hints; how to mark up and style forms for the greatest flexibility in responsive designs; and best practices for enhancing forms with JavaScript. By the end of this session you’ll be prepared to tackle whatever form-related challenges are thrown at you. You might even find yourself a little giddy over how awesome you can make them.

  6. Content in Context Is King

    When most people think of Responsive Design, they think of fluid grids and adapting the layout of components in a site or application. But design goes far beyond layout. How far? We will start by combining content, context, and behavior in ways that let us create truly responsive sites—sites that meet the needs of the people using them, when they’re using them, and how they’re using them. Learn how to use clues like time, location, proximity, capabilities, and preferences to create better designs for users. After accounting for the device’s form factor, capabilities, and features, we’ll look at context of use, and the art of anticipation, delivering a more thoughtful, more useful user experience for everyone.

  7. Top Task Management: Making it Easier to Prioritize

    In an age of increasing complexity, prioritizing will be a key skill. Anybody can add features or content. In fact, in this age of glut it’s the easiest thing in the world to do. Top Tasks Management helps you identify the top tasks in your projects (what really matters). Just as importantly, you'll discover the tiny tasks, the low-level tasks that flood designs and content pages, smothering simplicity and confusing your users with an ocean of features and content. Top Tasks Management is a method, developed over ten years of research, that will help you focus on what really matters in your projects, giving you the evidence to remove that which doesn't. It’s been used to great effect by organizations such as Cisco, Microsoft, Lenovo, Google, and the European Commission. Gerry will teach you how to identify the top and tiny tasks in your projects and you'll walk away with a strategy, giving you the ability to defend your decisions to your team and to management.

  8. Designing for Crisis

    It's easy to design for the idealized user, someone who's smart, calm, and informed. It's less easy, and thus more important, to design for a more realistic user: still smart, but harried and uncertain. The best designs handle both with care. But how many designs can help a user who is completely in the dark and barely capable of rational thought? In this talk, Eric will draw on his personal and professional experience to explore examples of crisis-mitigating design successes and failures. In the process, he'll illustrate ways that you can and should consider the needs of users teetering on the edge of panic. Helping them will make your designs more relevant and useful for all your users.

  9. Prototyping and Play

    On the multi-device web, getting ideas into code as quickly as possible is essential to the success of a project. Using tools like Pattern Libraries and the Command Line, we'll learn how to rapidly develop websites. The sooner your project is in code, the sooner you can play with and refine it. And play, as it turns out, is one of the secrets to improving personal job satisfaction and team morale.

  1. A Day Apart

    This full-day session, which includes a full breakfast and lunch, follows An Event Apart and runs 9:00am-4:00pm on Wednesday, August 12. You can register online and save over $100 when you sign up for all three days.

  2. Beyond Responsive: Accessible Design For Every Device

    Responsive web design is now a foundational concept of modern web design. It gives us the flexibility that we need to create future friendly web sites and applications. But there’s more to creating a great experience for everyone than just “making it responsive.” There’s much, much more.

    The online world is changing: sites are global, our audience is getting older, and people with disabilities are using our sites more every day. Beyond platform interoperability and the screen size agnosticism that responsive web design gives us, how will we design for all these different user needs? Internationally recognized accessibility champion Derek Featherstone is here to share the rest of the story: the story where we take all the great parts of what makes a site responsive and combine them with all the care and thoughtfulness that also makes a site accessible to all users. That’s the next step. That’s our future.

    Join Derek for this full day of insights, design strategy, and development techniques for creating responsive sites that are also accessible. You’ll need to bring your mobile device or tablet and a set of headphones—you’ll be using them throughout the day. In this session, attendees will:

    • See how they can leverage the responsive web design techniques they already know to make things more accessible.
    • Learn to design for low-vision mobile and tablet users.
    • Discover which responsive web design patterns can cause significant accessibility issues.
    • Understand how to identify accessibility needs during responsive web design.
    • Use modern coding techniques to fix the accessibility needs that you identify.
    • Gain a greater understanding of the state of mobile assistive technology.

     

Location

Sheraton Premiere at Tyson’s Corner 8661 Leesburg Pike Vienna, VA 22182

The Sheraton Premiere at Tysons Corner has arranged special room rates for An Event Apart attendees: just $199/night plus free in-room internet for the duration of your stay. Call (888) 627-8230 and request the “An Event Apart special rate.” Limited rooms are available at this rate, so don’t delay.

Sheraton Premiere at Tysons Corner is a newly renovated, upscale hotel located just 10 minutes from Dulles Airport (IAD) and 20 minutes outside Washington, D.C. Enjoy the convenience of an airport or urban hotel with the amenities of a resort.