[wp-ui] First steps

Voyagerfan5761 vf5761 at technobabbl.es
Wed Jan 20 04:07:51 UTC 2010

Hi everyone,

I'm Voyagerfan5761. I think I'm going to be somewhat out of place as
one of the few members not using my real name (I try to avoid that on
the Internet). My current plan is to contribute if I ever think I have
something to say; I don't want to be a lurker.

Anyway, I'm a student who will be entering college as a freshman in
the fall. Currently I live in Minnesota and operate on the Central
time zone, but that will change later when I move to school. Also, my
schedule is funky and doesn't conform to the work day, so I could be
catching up on reading this list or posting at any time of the day or

My main expertise is with amateur design, though I have absolutely no
professional experience. I'm also going to (at least initially) be in
a technical theatre / theatre design program. But the biggest scratch
design work I've done for the Web is located at swrobotics.com. The
team doesn't seem to have a new designer, so I think the site will
stay as-is for a while.

My experience with WordPress began in earnest only last October when I
moved my blog (technobabbl.es) to WordPress, but as a Blogger user I
experimented with the software off and on with friends' sites since
about version 2.5. Jane, the new admin UI is really a lot more usable
than the old one; congratulations to you and your team! I hope I can
contribute even in some small measure to making it better-looking and
more usable.

On WordPress.org, I go by the rather predictable username of 'voyagerfan5761'.

Looking forward to the discussions!


On Tue, Jan 19, 2010 at 11:10, Jane Wells <jane at automattic.com> wrote:
> Hi everyone. Almost 300 people have signed up for this list, which was way
> more than I expected. I'm not sure how many of you are people who actually
> want to get involved and contribute to the UI/UX work that goes into making
> WordPress, vs. how many are developers or users who just want to keep up
> with what's going on or offer feedback on other people's design work, so I
> think the first thing this list should do is help everyone get to know who's
> here. Lurkers need not do this, but if you're planning to contribute to the
> UI work ahead, please email this list and tell us a little bit about you:
> Your work background/current job, specific design/usability/accessibility
> skills/talents that we should know about/make use of, what you hope to
> contribute to WP UI, your location/time zone, and maybe the one UI thing you
> would like to address in WP if given the chance. My main goal here is to
> find out how many people of all the subscribers are actually people who can
> wireframe, make comps, run usability testing, etc, vs. simply wanting to
> weigh in with opinions on the work of others (which can happen on Trac
> tickets). This list is meant to be a working group.
> After people have had a day or two to introduce themselves, we'll have a
> better idea of how many people are actually planning to participate in this
> list for now, and can plan accordingly. I've got a list as long as my arm of
> potential design projects we can divvy up into groups, so knowing people's
> backgrounds and interests will help determine which projects we hit first.
> We can also then decide on a day/time for a weekly UI chat in IRC.
> I'm in the process of setting up a site for this group to use a la
> wpdevel.wordpress.com, and will start adding people as authors once we have
> created teams and begun working on projects and there are things to report.
> I'll need to know your wordpress.org login name to add you to the site.
> Usability people are welcome and encouraged to speak up also, not just
> designers. Getting the plan up and running for distributed testing is on the
> goals list, too.
> I guess I'll start. I'm Jane, and am the main UX person for WordPress. I led
> the admin redesign of 2.7, and work closely with the core team on UI
> changes. We never have time to get to everything, so there's still a ton
> left to do. I work for Automattic, which donates a big chunk of my time to
> the open source project. Before this job, I'd worked at agencies, companies
> and research groups in almost every front-end web job there is over the last
> 10 years. Though mostly UX stuff, I've also done project management, content
> development, HTML, visual design, testing, etc. Right now I'm a bottleneck
> for UI changes in WordPress, and anyone who works in this industry knows
> that it takes a lot longer to create a wireframe deck than it does to sketch
> an idea, so I'm hoping to grow this group into a healthy contributor
> community so that I can step back into more of a advisory/curatorial role
> rather than slowing things down while I draft wireframes or conduct
> individual testing sessions. I'm on the east coast, and would love it if the
> weekly chat could be during the day sometime before 3pm, but if the majority
> needs to have an evening meeting instead, I can work with that. I
> traditionally do wireframes in Omnigraffle, but would like to find a good
> open source tool (the ones I've tried haven't been great) that we can all
> use for this if possible. I generally go for Photoshop for comps, and have
> not found GIMP to be an adequate substitute, though I'd love to move visual
> design to open source tools as well. Suggestions are welcome.
> I'll be happy to answer questions, point to resources etc for those who want
> to get involved. However, this is not the right place (yet, anyway) to come
> if you are just getting started and want to learn the design/UX trade as a
> new career move or something. I'd like to start off with more experienced
> UI/UX people just to get some processes nailed down. I hope that in the
> future the WP UI group will be an awesome place to come to learn new skills.
> Who's next?
> Jane
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