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Blog > News and Events of UX design > A Look Back at 2017(IV): 8 Design Conferences and Trends Expected in 2018

A Look Back at 2017(IV): 8 Design Conferences and Trends Expected in 2018


With December rolls around, 2018 is about to come. The year 2017 witnessed a great series of UX & design conferences taking place all over the world. Great minds attended and great thoughts were shared and discussed at these conferences. New year is on its way, and it’s time to make a summary about UX design in 2017, what’s more, let’s see what we can expect in 2018 through the 8 best UX design conferences.

1. Convey UX

Date: February 28–March 2, 2017

Location: Seattle, WA USA

Topics: User Testing, Context of the User’s Environment in Design

The 5th annual Convey UX conference fell on February 28, 2017  in the Pacific Northwest. The conference offered locals and visitors access to high caliber speakers, like Steve Krug and Amber Case, as well as opportunities to engage with peers through speed networking and other fun social meetups. Krug spoke about why not conducting user testing is a terrible idea and Case were discussed why it is important to consider the context of the user’s environment for your designs.

Convey UX

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

User of a product has different ages, genders, religious beliefs, cultural backgrounds, political views. No doubt they think differently. User-Centered Design will definitely be an unchangeable discipline, designers should keep in mind the do’s and don’ts of User-Centered Design. User will play a more important role in 2018.

How to close the gap between you and your audiences in 2018:

  • Adopting user research into design process.

This allows the team to find out if a particular feature in your product is not working for a certain audience segment in advance. It would have saved the company leadership a lot of trouble).

  • Hiring a diverse design team.

This doesn’t eliminate the need for user research, but having a plural team can help ensure different perspectives are taken into consideration.

2. The O’Reilly Design Conference

Date: March 19–22, 2017

Location: San Francisco, USA

Topics: Full stack set of skills

The O’Reilly Design Conference was a deep immersion event focused on providing designers with a full stack set of skills to keep them on top of their game and creating the best products. You could also attend two days of training courses on topics such as conversational UI, designing data visualizations, essential business skills for designers, and design sprints. Speakers are of the highest caliber and include Julie Zhuo and Alan Cooper, among many others.

The O’Reilly Design Conference

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

Full stack designer has been discussed a lot in 2017 already. A truly full stack designer can build a basic conception of a project, and complete the whole design and development related works. Such as the wireframes/prototypes design, visual design, and the front coding, JS / jQuery, etc.

  • To become a full stack designer in 2018, the basics:
  • Prototype design:Wireframes, visual draft, low/high fidelity prototypes
  • User research
  • User experience
  • Test
  • Front-end development:HTML, CSS, JS, etc.
  • The handover with the programmer

Understand the interface and the development of the deep demand, how the front-end code will be more matching backend and the program.

3. UIE UX Immersion: Interactions

Date: May 1–3, 2017

Location: Portland, OR USA

Topics: Interaction Design, User Experience

User Interface Engineering (UIE) put together the UX Immersion conference on interaction design to discuss new techniques and practices in the field of interaction design and user experience. You were exposed to cutting-edge design methods you can incorporate into your own workflow immediately including animation and motion.

UIE UX Immersion: Interactions

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

When user in the state of tension a user experiences between an action (clicking a button) and a response (moving to the next page), if the High latency and load times between action and response are bad, it may trigger user’s brief experience of anxiety. Interstitial anxiety is here to begin.

To lower Interstitial anxiety in 2018:

Creating transition elements that allude to the next screen in the sequence, users are permitted to momentarily preview, and thus anticipate, rather than worry. Meanwhile, micro-interactions are fast on their way to everyday use. the ways that we as users and consumers experience devices will change greatly; every touch, scroll, pinch, zoom, tap, click and so on will be rich with unique animations and feedback.

4. HOW Design Live

Date: May 2–6, 2017

Location:  Chicago, IL USA

Topics: Collaboration Between Design And Marketing Professionals, AI

HOW Design Live was focused on the need for collaboration between design and marketing professionals. It included 4 program tracks; Branding and Packaging, Marketing and Strategy, Design and Creativity, and Tools and Resources. The event offered over 80 educational sessions that aim to change your thinking and improve your design work through a range of workshops and master classes. Topics were sketching and ideation, managing design teams, how AI impacted the future of design, and building a human centered culture. Malcolm Gladwell and DeeDee Gordon are two of the featured speakers.

HOW Design Live

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

It has never been so easy and accessible to create prototypes. But it’s never been so critical to find better ways of collaborating beyond them.

Prototyping is the most tangible way to share an idea with the team, to gather feedback from users, and to raise new questions or solutions for the problem you are trying to solve.

Real-time collaboration tool like Mockplus is here risen up, in 2018, more tool will come into this trend.

5. UX Week 2017

Date: August 29–September 1, 2017

Location: San Francisco, CA

Topics: New Tools

Spend four days learning from the industry’s best. Featuring new tools you can put to use immediately, development and strategy techniques, designing for new technologies, and more. The event was organized by the service design experts from Adaptive Path.

UX Week 2017

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

Many new design tools like prototyping tool appeared in 2017. Designers tend to try out those brand-new name tools rather than only stick to 1 design tools. It also a new requirement for designers in 2018, that is to power their skills by use and command more tools towards different design requirements.

6. An Event Apart

Date: April 3–5, 2017

Location: Seattle, United States

Topics: Comprehensive and multi-disciplinary themes

“An Event Apart (AEA) attendees are UX professionals, developers, and designers — including interaction designers, graphic designers, and UI designers. Project managers, writer/editors, marketers, strategists, and even site owners and clients attend. This wide spectrum of roles speaks to the uniquely comprehensive and multi-disciplinary nature of this single-track event.

AEA attendees, like other conference attendees, want to improve job skills and make new community and business connections in an intense and fun environment. But unlike the typical conference goer, AEA attendees have that gleam in their eye that comes from the belief that through advocacy and hard work, they can make a meaningful difference.”

An Event Apart

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

As the broad "UX designer" title starts to dissolve, we see fellow designers focusing on new paths and specializations:

  • Some designers are adventuring in new fields and technologies, like virtual reality, conversational design, voice interfaces;
  • Some are focusing on more specific areas of the design craft, like motion design, prototyping, UX writing;
  • Some are updating their titles to Product Designers, broadening their scope beyond interaction design to focus more on product strategy and business.

7. Enterprise UX 2017

Date: Jun 7–9, 2017

Location: San Francisco, CA USA

Topics: Enterprise UX

For those of you that work at an enterprise company, Enterprise UX, produced by Rosenfeld Media, is geared towards you. The conference was specifically designed for the unique user experience challenges that can be found within enterprise businesses. The conference covered how UX is practiced in enterprises like Pacific Gas and Electric, Hewlett-Packard, and SAP and how UX is changing the way these businesses work. Themes covered include crafting enterprise experiences, transcending silos, and creating a legacy.

Enterprise UX 2017

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

Designers will be involved in strategic decisions early on. The UX designers of 2018 will need to understand more about business.

8. IA Summit 2017

Date: March 22–26, 2017

Location: Vancouver, Canada

Topics: human-centered design, ethics in technology, artificial intelligence

“Information Architects have always recognized the essential role of the user. To be successful, IA must work for people. But as artificial intelligence and machine learning increase in power and prevalence, how can we ensure that technology serves human needs, and not the other way around?

This year’s theme, Designing for Humans will bring multi-faceted discussions to the Summit around topics such as human-centered design, ethics in technology, and how to reconcile the presence of artificial intelligence with the real needs and experiences of people.”

IA Summit 2017

What UX design trend can we see in 2018?

In 2018, every service we know will add the label "AI-powered" to it. An AI that creates bodega vending machines; AI that controls your meetings; AI that checks in on your kids for you; AI that replaces you at work. Oh, and an AI church as well. Definitely, AI will become a hottest design trend.

Above are the 8 important UX design conferences in 2017. let’s see where the year 2018 will take us to.

Trista Liu

In-house UX copywriter. She is passionate about UX design, always bursting with energy and full of new ideas.

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