Just need somewhere to stash these various layouts from various algorithms from various Force-Directed graph projects.And remember – just because a data visualisation is pretty doesn’t mean it is useful.
It is odd that in a digital world which preaches you can be anything to anyone that most of us at the digital coal face have to be known as One Thing Only And Nothing Else.Consider Linkedin. (Sorry!) I dislike Linkedin on many levels, the main one being that as a digital professional I have to belong to it as not existing on Linkedin is pretty much the same as not existing IRL.What is worse is that Linkedin members have to be one thing and one thing only. You cannot be two things. Let alone three.So I have to be a User Experience <insert label here> . In terms of the sort of UX work I love to do this should mean that I label myself as a User Experience Architect.But the way I and most UX people work is not within the parameters of a job title but whatever needs to be done to get the work done and out the door on time.I love researching. Digging away through data, opinions and theories to find that elusive thing called ‘truth’. But dare I call myself a researcher if by doing so I alienate those who want a UX Architect?I love designing. But it seems that now (2016) a User Experience Designer is different from a User Experience Architect.Not just a bit different but chalk and cheese never the twain shall meet different.There is also something called a User Experience Interface Designer which is a person whose skills are different from a User Experience Designer.How? I have no idea whatsoever. To me UI design is a part of UX. Always has been always will be. But then maybe I have been in this industry too long and have too much experience.Just to confuse everyone even further I do love data visualisation and have been spending far too much time fiddling with D3.js and Crossfilter when I should have been doing something more… easy to label?And I do dip into a bit of Python programming occasionally and have been fighting the almost irresistible urge to hack some machine learning for the first time since completing my degree in computing and A.I.Would this be a worthwhile use of my time?Or should I fire up Axure to show that yes I can use this exceptionally nasty piece of software to build fat and unwieldy UX prototypes?An Azure hack would fit better with the UX profile I should display to the world but the machine learning / data visualisation coding would be more honest.But being honest does not fit.It seems we can only be one thing.So for the moment I will continue to present my abilities within the confines of a Linkedin profile and some portfolio links and see where I end up.At the end of the day I just like doing good work and solving complex problems.
Found this in a job description for a very interesting UX role which astounded me with its clarity:“You might describe yourself as an Experience Architect, Interaction Designer or User Researcher. Ideally, you’re part-interaction designer, part-information architect, part-usability expert, part-business analyst – and all user experience.”Crikey! This has been written by someone who actually knows what UX is about.And that is very rare indeed.Part-interaction designer, part-information architect, part-usability expert, part-business analyst, all user experience is me. With part data viz thrown in of course.The amount of junk bullshit job descriptions for graphic designers posing as UX peeps I get sent is ridiculous.So when I read this it was very refreshing indeed because it describes what I do and how I do it precisely.Not quite as refreshing as three weeks on an idyllic Caribbean island but close enough.I will not be apologising for ripping this off and copy and pasting it straight into my CV.You never know, I might even get some decent UX work out of it.Now that would be odd.