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UX Bristol 2018: emotional, mental and physical user design

By Stacey Hirst

Digital Marketing Executive


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The summer months are finally upon us and Bristol’s busy event scene is just getting started! We’re lucky enough to have a fantastic schedule ahead of us, with the iconic Balloon Fiesta taking over our skies and the Harbourfest occupying the city’s waterfront. Next month, on Friday 13th July, the historical M Shed museum will once again be the venue of choice for a jam-packed day of workshops at UX Bristol 2018. The PFR team will be there, ready for some thought-provoking talks about user design from all angles: the emotional, mental and physical side of the user experience.

Chatter about chatbots

In an age where we can get through an entire day without so much as a conversation with another human being, it’s no surprise that Craig Pugsley has chosen to voice his opinion on the wonderful world of conversational technology: chatbots, voice-enabled devices, digital assistants, and so much more. In this hands-on workshop, we’ll get to create our own chatbot by writing scripts, testing them and building our very own conversational assistant!

Stop. Collaborate and listen!

From talk about conversations to complete silence with Ajara Pfannenschmidt, who is giving us the chance to enjoy some peace and quiet, while tackling a team task. How? Ajara will be showing us the art of collaboration, at a much quieter volume than the usual shouting over each other that can happen!

Designing a forgettable experience

Alistair Somerville will be joining UX Bristol 2018 to remind us that, whilst we’re usually striving to be memorable in every other aspect of life, sometimes being forgettable is just as important. Creating a seamless user experience means having an invisible scaffolding: an experience so tightly woven that the user forgets their journey and can arrive at their end destination without any hold-ups. With a background in sensory design, and experience as a regular host of workshops on emotional design, we have a feeling Alistair’s workshop is one you’ll want to remember!

Mapping mental models

If you like the sound of getting to grips with users’ emotions, then Mariana Morris should also be an interesting listen for you. You’ll be mapping users’ mental models to find out more about people’s pain-points: frustrations, negativity and drop-outs all have something in common, and Mariana wants to help you find out just what that is!

Filling in the brand blanks

Talking of pain-points, Brian Copeland wants to help out with yours too. Have you ever asked a client for their brand guidelines and been looked at blankly? The expectation to create a great experience for a brand, when their own team can’t define what it is the business believes in or is trying to achieve, is like playing hide and seek in the dark – near impossible. Brian’s talk at UX Bristol promises to walk us through the questions we should be asking our clients and the process we need to do our job better (and never get that blank look from a client ever again – here’s hoping, anyway!).


if there’s been one buzzword for us this year in the world of technology and design, it’s GDPR! Before you groan and give us a subconscious eye-roll, stay with us! Paul Matthews will be sharing his thoughts on the current data protection legislation and encourage us all to share the knowledge we have acquired so far. So, whether you’re an expert in GDPR and can help others with your wisdom or you’re a novice and want to get up to speed on the new data legislation, here’s your chance.

Bypassing the bias: is it possible?

Another human reaction that subconsciously interferes with research is bias. Sometimes you may not even realise it’s there, but human bias is one of the biggest human errors when it comes to conducting and analysing research. Emma Howell from Bristol-based cxpartners will be sharing her tips on how to look out for it (and avoid it) so your research sessions can be as organic and unbiased as possible.

Have these event highlights got you feeling excited? UX Bristol 2018 will be taking place at the M Shed in Bristol on Friday 13th July. We’ll be there flying the People for Research flag and eager to learn more about all of the dimensions of user design, and how we can continue to support designers, researchers and companies alike with their user research needs! If you’re interested in attending, click here to purchase your tickets.

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About the author: Stacey Hirst is the Digital Marketing Executive at People for Research. She is our content expert and a bit of a geek! You can find her on Twitter or Instagram, engaging with participants and chatting with clients.

About People for Research: We recruit participants for UX and usability testing and market research. We work with award winning UX agencies across the UK and partner with a number of end clients who are leading the way with in-house user experience and insight.

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