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As our last warmup, we have one more presentation from Transform 16 to get you in the mood. Monica Ritz from South Australia's Office for Digital Government gave a terrific talk about spending time on secondment with the (then) Digital Transformation Office before taking ideas and processes back to her State department. Here's how we summarise it in Wrap magazine.

A Digital Transformation Story

Monica Ritz SA Office for Digital Government

Monica Ritz

Key points

Six weeks secondment with the DTO changed everything, including a true understanding of agile and of user-centred design. Government knows processes, policies, legislations but they never use the services so how do they know what their users need? The SA government is implementing the Digital Service Standards on a tight timeframe and it will be difficult. DTO is showing that agile is a culture, not a methodology tacked on.
"Agile is a culture and not scrums and stand-up."
Transform 16: Monica Ritz

Takeaways

The people who face the problem hold the key to the answers and we need to develop empathy and it’s got to be the whole team. Resolve a problem, don’t just present a solution. Resolution requires understanding the problem. An example: women prisoners were not applying for bail and it was thought the form was the problem. It turned out the form wasn’t the problem - the women had their own reasons for not wanting to apply for bail. The mantras we’re hearing: continuous improvement, taking feedback, user research, multidisciplinary teams, agile and user-centred approach - they all involve big changes for SA government. Transparency and teamwork go together - make everything open. Transform 16: Monica Ritz

Caveats

You have to show the benefits of transformation. Metrics become important. You have to be able to fail, not to celebrate your failures but to learn from them. The biggest challenge is getting staff to not just acknowledge but truly understand user-centred design. Authority and support has to come from the top down. Transform 16: Monica Ritz

Resources

@sagovau website

Tweets

Transform 16: Monica Ritz Transform 16: Monica Ritz" ["post_title"]=> string(58) "Transform 16: A Digital Transformation Story - Monica Ritz" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(53) "transform-16-digital-transformation-story-monica-ritz" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-28 11:11:03" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-28 00:11:03" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7115" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [1]=> object(WP_Post)#233 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7108) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-27 13:30:14" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-27 02:30:14" ["post_content"]=> string(3954) "Transform 17 kicks off this week in Canberra (workshop Wednesday 29/3, conference Thursday 30/3) and it looks like it might just as compelling as last year's event. One of the aspects of Transform 16 that was especially pleasing was the range of perspectives represented by the speakers, including how the digital transformation of government information and services was going in different parts of the country, as well as from overseas. At the time, Ann Combe was Executive Director, Communications and Marketing Bureau, Department of the Chief Minister, Northern Territory and reported to the conference on transformation progress in Australia's top end, a region that has some very specific characteristics and needs. Here's our Wrap magazine summary.

NT.GOV.AU, a Case Study

Ann Combe, Department of the Chief Minister, NT

Ann Combe

Key points

The Northern Territory’s whole of government website, nt.gov.au, was launched on 21 April 2016. The plan was to put all customer-facing information in one place, leaving individual agency websites to focus on corporate information. Digital strategy was particularly informed by the need to reach remote and indigenous communities. To be customer-focused, information would be organised by topic rather than organisation structure. The plan was to go live topic by topic over a three year period. When the first topic was demonstrated, it was decided to make the whole site live within nine months. A team of editors and subeditors was recruited to rewrite 5,000 pages of content, along with technical expertise in content management and search systems.
"We were ready with the site on time and on budget, but it was really, really hard work."
Transform 16: NT govt website

Takeaways

Dealing with government should primarily be through digital channels. Customers see government as one organisation and expect to be able to interact with it digitally when, where and how they wish. Be customer centric. Learn and improve through customer feedback. Content and features must be easy to find and easy to use. Customers must be confident in the security and privacy of their interaction online. Engage stakeholders early, often and with respect. Transform 16: crocodile map

Caveats

Make sure dedicated project management resources are allocated - this is not something that business-as-usual staff should be doing. Conduct extensive user testing to inform design. Never underestimate the challenges of change management. Build a solid foundation to support future innovation and improvements. Challenges remain, like embedding the new editorial techniques into agency websites. Transform 16: Ann Combe

Tweets

Transform 16: tweets " ["post_title"]=> string(48) "Transform 16: NT.GOV.AU a case study - Ann Combe" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(43) "transform-16-nt-gov-au-case-study-ann-combe" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-27 13:20:28" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-27 02:20:28" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7108" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [2]=> object(WP_Post)#234 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7033) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-24 12:00:00" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-24 01:00:00" ["post_content"]=> string(5707) "Those of us who work in Web and the digital arena don't have to be reminded that our fields are constantly updating. Whether it's underlying technologies, or broad strategic practices, what was cutting edge last year is often common practice this year, and out of date the next. Both in terms of our own professional development and the impact our work has on our company, organisation or clients, we all strive to keep up to date. But it's no shortcoming to say that's a lot of work. For many years, our primary focus at Web Directions has been to help our audience of professional practitioners in the Web and digital fields keep up to date. We spend our lives keeping track of the technologies, practices, and ideas that are shaping our fields, and we bring them to you via articles, newsletters, podcasts, and of course our conferences and workshops. All with the aim of helping you do your job as best as you can. But with the expansion of our conferences over the last couple of years, it's not as easy as simply coming to our big end of year conference anymore. By breaking out that one, multi-track behemoth into a number of more focused events, our aim is to deliver the best possible event for various groups of professionals within the industry. Here's a breakdown of each event, who it's for, and how you and your team will benefit from attending.

Respond: for the front end design team

Increasingly great customer experiences are delivered by multi-disciplinary teams. Respond is designed to reflect that reality, with in-depth content for Interaction Designers, UX and CX professionals, UI Engineers - along with high-level, strategic thinking relevant to the whole front end design team. Where else can you see people of the calibre of Mina Markham, the lead of the front end design efforts at the Hillary for America Campaign, world leader in web animation Rachel Nabors, or Elizabeth Allen, working at the forefront of conversation interfaces wth Shopify? All curated by John Allsopp, cited by Ethan Marcotte, inventor of Responsive Web Design, as a key inspiration for the ideas that became RWD.
Our promise
Respond delivers actionable insights on current best practice in front end design in the broadest sense, in two super condensed days, in three cities. Cut down on travel time and expense, and invest a small fraction of your working year getting out in front of current trends.

Code: the JavaScript and front end engineering conference

Progressive Web Apps were first publicly talked about by their inventor Alex Russell at Code. Object Oriented CSS (OOCSS) was launched on the world at another of our events. We've been tracking trends in the technologies of the Web since the early 1990s, and then bringing these ideas to our community at events and elsewhere since the early days of the Web. Code focuses on the fundamental building blocks of great Web experiences: JavaScript, CSS, Browser APIs - alongside best practices in performance, security, and software engineering for the Web. We believe it's a unique event, not just within Australia, but globally. And like Respond, Code is visiting Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane this year, in late July and early August.
Our promise
Code helps front end engineers deliver faster, more secure, more maintainable code that taps into the latest capabilities of the Web platform, which all adds up to the best possible customer experience. Cut down on travel time and expense, and invest a small fraction of your working year getting out in front of current trends.

Direction: the intersection of design, technology and big picture thinking

Last year we re-launched our Web Directions conference as Direction, to reflect the changes in our overall approach to delivering the best possible events to help you develop professionally. But, if Respond focuses on front end design, and Code on front end engineering, what does Direction focus on? Direction is about the bigger picture (just as it always was as Web Directions). Two days of keynote-style presentations that help you chart a way forward, think about medium term trends in technology, in user experience, in interaction design. Direction helps you think about where your the work you do, and your career will go over the next few years. The Web will always be at the heart of our events - including Direction - since the Web, we believe, will continue to be the medium for delivering the best possible user experiences in the great majority of cases. But as machine learning, AI and conversational interfaces impact on the sorts of experiences we deliver to our users, as computing power disseminates into almost every object, and as these and other developments affect business and society profoundly, we believe it's important to give deep consideration to these challenges and opportunities, not with breathless hype, but as we've always done, through the insights of people who spend their lives thinking about these things.
Our promise
We'll separate the hype of emerging trends in technology, design, and strategic thinking from actionable reality. We'll bring you deep thinkers who are working with these ideas and technologies, not simply taking about them. And we'll help you make the right decisions in harnessing the opportunities of a world that seems to be in a constant state of flux. Direction 16" ["post_title"]=> string(43) "Plan Your Professional Development for 2017" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(43) "plan-your-professional-development-for-2017" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-24 12:16:29" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-24 01:16:29" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7033" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [3]=> object(WP_Post)#235 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7088) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-24 10:00:54" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-23 23:00:54" ["post_content"]=> string(1834) "Now that it has support in browsers like Chrome and Firefox, CSS Grid is being recognised as the gamechanger it is for front end designers and developers. That support has only come this month, but those who attended our Code 16 conference in July/August last year have been preparing for its advent ever since, thanks in large part to the detailed, pragmatic and quite inspiring talk given on the topic by Rachel Andrew, who can reasonably lay claim to knowing more about CSS Grid than anyone on the planet. The video of that talk, CSS Grid Layout, is our Video of the Week, and I heartily recommend you set aside 50 minutes or so to find out what all the fuss is about and get to grips with how you can use CSS Grid to your best advantage.   Like to watch and read more like this? Be the first to score invitations to our events? Then jump on our once a week mailing list where we round up the week's best reading and watching on all things Web. And you'll get a complimentary digital copy of Scroll magazine.
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Well, we're just one week away from our first conference of the year, Transform 17 in Canberra on 30 March. It looks like we'll have pretty close to a full house - at last count, there were just a couple of dozen conference tickets still available. The Workshop day with Dan Sheldon and Sarah Atkinson on 29 March is sold out, so it's going to be a massive two days. We've been particularly gratified at how many of last year's attendees are joining us again this year.

 Who's speaking at Transform 17?

The fact is, even since last year's Transform conference, things have moved on in the world of transforming government service delivery, in some ways at a very hectic pace and affecting some very basic assumptions (see my recent article Transforming Policy and Delivery). Wew've put together a line-up of speakers covering topics that will most directly and profoundly change the way we all look at government service delivery. The transformation continues, and Transform is there to help show the way forward. Ben Holliday, UK DWP Dan Sheldon, UK GDS Ariel Kennan, NYC Mayor's Office Sarah Atkinson, Pragmateam Stewart Hay, Intopia Jenny Hunter, Head of Digital, BOM Brian Dargan & Luke Hymers, Mentally Friendly Catherine Thompson, DTA Belinda Kellar, DSITI
Register to Transform 17
  As Australia’s premier conference on digital service delivery in government, you will have access to practitioners and thought-leaders working in digital transformation from around the globe. If you work in this area, the Transform conference is a major avenue of professional development for you. You'll find detailed descriptions of the schedule, the speakers and their presentations at the Transform website.  
" ["post_title"]=> string(28) "1 Week Out from Transform 17" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(28) "1-week-out-from-transform-17" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-23 21:18:49" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-23 10:18:49" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7099" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [5]=> object(WP_Post)#237 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7081) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-23 10:00:50" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-22 23:00:50" ["post_content"]=> string(14211) "When we held our inaugural Transform conference in Canberra last year from 18-19 May, we didn't realise it would coincide with Global Accessibility Awareness Day on 19 May. Once we knew, we decided to organise a small event to celebrate. There is, of course, a great crossover and overlap between the concepts of government digital service delivery transformation and digital accessibility. The lack of accessibility to people with particular access needs in much of how government makes information available to citizens is precisely the reason a transformation is needed. One of our international keynote Transform speakers, Dana Chisnell, as well as driving change as a Design Researcher (then) at the US Digital Service, had also much experience in analysing and advocating for accessibility for people with disabilities to public facilities such as voting at elections, and agreed to speak. That kicked off an evening that also featured Andrew Arch, a long-time Australian accessibility advocate working within Government and more recently a key recruit for the (then) Digital Transformation Office, as well as local disability and accessibility advocates. Here's how Ricky Onsman and Jacinta Cali reported on it for Wrap magazine.

Transforming Accessibility

Celebrating Global Accessibility Awareness Day

This first Transform conference, which focused on how governments can improve the way they provide online services to all citizens, happened to share its May 19 date with Global Accessibility Awareness Day. So that’s several hundred designers, front end developers, information architects, user experience specialists, content producers and project managers with a focus on digital government information services coming together from around the country on just the day nominated to draw worldwide attention to web accessibility for people with disabilities. In late 2011, US developer Joe Devon floated the idea of day on which web developers across the globe would try to raise awareness and knowhow on making websites accessible. Among other accessibility professionals who expressed support, Jennison Asuncion set to work with Joe to make GAAD a reality. Since 2012, events have been held around the world that have changed the way devs and designers think and act with regard to accessibility, and profiling the many efforts made to make the web accessible to people with disabilities. Many events aim to put accessibility into context for the people who build the web, like trying to use websites blindfolded or without a mouse. In Australia, A11y Bytes has been organising GAAD events first in Sydney, then adding Melbourne and Perth in subsequent years. These have taken the form of public meetups with short talks on accessibility topics, and have definitely helped web professionals rethink their approach to accessibility. For the last few years, the date for GAAD has been set as the third Thursday in May. In 2016, that was 19 May. The day of the Transform conference itself was already packed with activity, and the evening would see many people heading home and others attending organised post-conference events. But the day before the conference was the day on which US usability experts Dana Chisnell and Jared Spool held their Canberra workshop Deconstructing Delight, a Transform event held at the same venue. The Web Directions team recruited the support of the A11y Bytes folks and members of the Digital Transformation Office involved with the conference (who include, rightly, some of the best web accessibility talent in this country) to co-present Transforming Accessibility, “an opportunity to connect with the broader accessibility and digital communities in Canberra, in honour of Global Accessibility Awareness Day.” It was a good turnout for a chilly Canberra evening, with local disability activists and community representatives mixing with accessibility specialists and buzzy and excited workshop attendees. Excellent snacks and drinks helped warm the atmosphere in the former Members Bar and Lounge of Old Parliament House, as Web Directions founder John Allsopp welcomed everyone and introduced four speakers. Transform 16: Transforming Accessibility While Dana Chisnell was at Transform in her role as Design Researcher at the US Digital Service, talking about the transformation of online government services underway in America, and was co-delivering the workshop with Jared (possibly the best credentialled and most polished user experience tag team ever), her professional history also goes back to some extremely significant research into the needs of people with age-related impairments and disabilities that went on to inform the development of the W3C’s Web Accessibility Content Guidelines. A11y cred ++ Dana spoke eloquently and warmly about an understanding of accessibility that is becoming increasingly powerful: that it’s not about adding things on to compensate for inaccessibility - it’s about not building in the obstacles to access in the first place and, where those obstacles have been built in, removing them. This applies as much to the relatively young world of the web as it does to the physical world of bricks and mortar. They are both built environments that should not - and do not need to - exclude people with specific access needs. A focus of Dana’s professional experience (and personal ongoing interest) is the usability of the electoral experience and ensuring that it allows for the participation of all citizens. Her story about personally supporting the participation of people as voters who had always assumed they were excluded from this most basic of citizens’ rights was moving and inspiring, not least for the simplicity of the solution - make it easy for everyone. Transform 16: Transforming Accessibility Dr Andrew Arch is an Australian pioneer of web accessibility, having built Vision Australia’s accessibility training services in the early 2000s, then working in France and the UK with the W3C’s Web Accessibility Initiative, and returning here to work with the Australian Government Information Management Office on making government websites accessible through the National Transition Strategy. He is now Lead, Accessibility, Diversity, Assisted Digital for the game-changing Digital Transformation Office. Andrew spoke of Australia’s strong track record of involvement in web accessibility initiatives over the years, how accessibility intersects with the information needs of so many people in the community and how the DTO is working to make government information online more accessible to the whole community, including people who have disabilities. Australia is part of a global movement that acknowledges government information services have become increasingly complex, and need to be made more accessible. Andrew affirmed that there is much to be done in this area but also that progress is being made, with the critical factor of awareness being assisted by events like GAAD. Transform 16: Transforming Accessibility Robert Altamore is Executive Officer of People with Disabilities ACT, the peak disability advocacy body in the territory. His personal experience of disability, his years of involvement with Blind Citizens Australia and his participation in key advocacy initiatives in Australia have left him well placed to observe and comment on both the positive steps that have been taken and the need for much more to be done. The web represents a brave new world of information sharing, and it is critical that everything is done to ensure that people with disabilities are not only not excluded from it, but are actively empowered by it. Sue Salthouse was until 2012 President of Women with Disabilities Australia, the peak organisation for women with all types of disabilities in Australia. She continues to be an active advocate for women’s rights and the rights of people with disability, and was made Canberra Citizen of the Year in 2015. Like Robert, Sue drew attention to the expected positive impact of the National Disability Insurance Scheme, but reminded us all that there is much work yet to be done before we see the full potential of the NDIS for changing the lives of people with disability. Sue also drew attention to the terrible statistics around violence toward women that are often compounded for women with disabilities. The sum effect of the four speakers was to acknowledge that the web has enormous potential to benefit people with disabilities, but that will only happen if we make sure the web is accessible, particularly in the areas of government services and information so critical for people who require support. It was an inspiring, thought-provoking evening that left the web professionals present with a clearer awareness of what they have the potential to achieve through an accessible web. We asked Jacinta Cali, Director of Website Projects for digital agency Internetrix, what she thought of the evening. Transform 16: Jacinta Cali GAAD is so important Websites, software and mobile apps all have plenty in common: they want to be inclusive, easy to use and inviting. Still, so many of us are releasing new sites into the market with little or no care for digital accessibility. Not everyone who shapes the web knows just how important accessibility is and I believe it’s simply due to lack of awareness. Thankfully, we have Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) which is an important event aimed at doing just that - raising awareness. On the eve of the first ever Transform conference in Canberra, I attended Transforming Accessibility which celebrated GAAD. GAAD aims to get people talking, thinking and learning about digital accessibility. At Transforming Accessibility, we heard from inspirational speakers who educated us about what is at stake when we talk about accessibility. What I found so great was just how many people there were passionate about creating an inclusive web. What I learned was everyone has a need and a basic right to access the sites we create. Visitors to a website, including those with disabilities, can become excluded from its content in different ways that take just a little thought to remedy. As digital creators, we are responsible for delivering an accessible experience to all users. In 2016, awareness of accessibility in tech is increasing, but not everyone knows how to start or where to find knowledge on accessibility. GAAD aims to provide people in digital with the know-how for creating accessible sites and to educate related communities that influence technology. As digital creators there are some easy ways we can make sites more accessible. Here’s a few things you can do to make your sites better: Don’t disable zoom. Pixel perfect is so 2004. Ultimately it’s really bad for your visitors. Check out the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 section 1.4.4. Avoid bitmapped captcha images. Opt for non-interactive mechanisms to check for spam or other invalid content. Make downloadable files accessible. The files you embed on your website also need to be WCAG 2.0 compliant. Use focus styles. If you find focus {outline: none;} somewhere in your style sheet then remove it. Build a content style that removes jargon, using clear and simple language. Have meaningful Alternative (Alt) Text. Not too short, not a duplicate of the title and not too long (about 8 - 10 words is good). Making these changes gives a wider spread of the community, such as those with disabilities and seniors, the ability to join in with digital life. This is social inclusion in action. GAAD raises awareness for digital shapers to produce sites that are more usable for a wider audience, meeting compliance standards, and improving the quality of life for users so that the hard things in life are a bit easier. For more information on how to make your site accessible check out http://a11yproject.com/resources.html or get in touch with A11Y Bytes.    " ["post_title"]=> string(40) "Transform 16: Transforming Accessibility" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(39) "transform-16-transforming-accessibility" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-19 15:43:16" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-19 04:43:16" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7081" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [6]=> object(WP_Post)#238 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7094) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-22 13:00:03" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-22 02:00:03" ["post_content"]=> string(6930) "
Respond is an event you won't find anywhere else, bringing together as it does the whole front end team to address the challenge of delivering engaging customer experiences. This year, Respond 17 visits Sydney (4-5 May), Melbourne (8-9 May) and for the first time Brisbane (12 May), saving time and travel costs. We've extended Early Bird pricing by a week to 31 March and, as you'll see below, that means some significant discounts. But what is it that makes Respond a must-attend event for you?

1. The Speakers

We bring you the experts who are defining and redefining how we work. This year, Respond features:
  • Mina Markham (Senior UI Engineer, Hillary for America) on design systems
  • Rachel Nabors (Program Manager, Microsoft Edge; W3C) on web animation
  • Vitaly Friedman (Founder, Smashing Magazine) on responsive design
  • Elizabeth Allen (UX Researcher, Spotify) on conversational interactions
  • Cordelia McGee-Tubb (Accessibility Specialist, Dropbox) on accessible web development
  • Plus Rebecca Hendry (Westpac), Michael Taranto (Seek), Adem Cifcioglu (Intopia), Mike Riethmuller, Mandy Michael (Seven West Media), Brett Snaidero (Internetrix), Wayne Thompson (Australian Type Foundry), Mike Sharp, Shefik Bey (Loop11), Laura Summer, Warwick Cox (Crowd Delivery).
show me the Speakers
2. The PresentationsRespond is the pre-eminent Australian conference for front end design and development. Every year, Web Directions scours the globe to find expert practitioners exploring the areas that are most likely to inform and influence industry developments in the immediate and more distant future.
  • At Respond 15, UK design legend Andy Clarke talked about design creativity in a templated, frameworked world, US RWD pioneer Scott Jehl addressed accessibility in responsive design, and Yesenia Perez-Cruz talked about balancing performance and design issues – all topics that are top of mind for designers in 2017.
  • At Respond 16, we had Ethan Marcotte doing more with less code, Sara Soueidan on SVG and CSS, Jen Simmons on Flexbox and Grid, Karen McGrane on adaptive content and Rachel Ilan Simpson on security – all topics that are preoccupying designers here and now.
  • At Respond 17, the key topics are design systems and languages, UI animation and motion design, layout, conversational UIs, designing bots, accessibility, web components, text and typography, working with data and user experience. Get ready for tomorrow, today.
show me the Schedule
3. What You Get at the Event
  • Comfortable seats with clear sightlines and great acoustics
  • Scroll magazine, in print and digital
  • Delicious, healthy buffet choices for lunch
  • Excellent snacks for morning and afternoon tea
  • The best coffee youll have at any conference, anywhere
  • Free wifi
  • Device charging facilities
  • Connections – with colleagues, peers and speakers (Gold ticket holders even join us for dinner with the speakers)
  • Opening night reception
  • Closing night party
show me Scroll magazine
4. What You Get After the Event
  • Wrap magazine, a digital summary of every single session
  • Access to speaker slides, links and resources
  • Access to presentation videos (for Silver and Gold attendees)
  • Discounts to future Web Directions events
  • Advance invitations to special events
show me Wrap magazine
5. Early Bird ValueWith an event like Respond - a two-day or one-day conference with different ways to upgrade the experience by adding workshop attendance, access to post-conference videos and/or the speaker dinner, PLUS a series of possible discounts and season tickets - it’s hard to explain all the permutations in just a paragraph or two. We can say that the most basic ticket for the two-day conference in Sydney or Melbourne with most of the above packed into it can cost you less than $1,000 if you register before 24 March. As an investment in focused, professional development, that's hard to top. We've laid things out on our pricing page so you can decide which combination of options offers you the best value. Respond happens every year, but THIS line-up of speakers on THESE topics is only going to come along this year. We hope we see you and your team at Respond 17. show me the Pricing
" ["post_title"]=> string(50) "5 Great Reasons You Should Register for Respond 17" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(35) "5-great-reasons-register-respond-17" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-23 21:13:18" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-23 10:13:18" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7094" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [7]=> object(WP_Post)#239 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7077) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-22 10:00:30" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-21 23:00:30" ["post_content"]=> string(2768) "Kevin YankVideo Ristretto this week brings you Kevin Yank's timely reminder to check the CSS you already know, including whether and how it works, and what's coming soon in terms of both the spec and browser implementation. We asked Kevin, Front End Engineer at Culture Amp and regular contributor to Web Directions events over the years, to revisit CSS Selectors for our Respond conference last year, even though - or, perhaps, because - the use of frameworks and preprocessors has often hidden them from day-to-day use. His talk, CSS Selectors Redux, runs for just under 24 minutes. Watch out for MacGyver.  

Want more?

Like to see and read more like this? Be the first to score invitations to our events? Then jump on our once-a-week mailing list to keep up with everything happening at Web Directions. And you'll get a complimentary digital copy of Scroll magazine.
" ["post_title"]=> string(49) "Video Ristretto: Kevin Yank - CSS Selectors Redux" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(46) "video-ristretto-kevin-yank-css-selectors-redux" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-19 14:34:24" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-19 03:34:24" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7077" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [8]=> object(WP_Post)#240 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7066) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-21 10:00:16" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-20 23:00:16" ["post_content"]=> string(7908) "Aubrey Blanche is the Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Atlassian, the Australian startup that became a global giant. Her talk at our end-of-one-year, start-of-the-next Direction conference in 2016 turned out to be notable for several reasons. Firstly, the full title of this presentation, Scaling Walls: The Barriers to Female Representation and How Atlassian is Eliminating Them, tells you that it fits perfectly the discussions prompted by the recent International Women's Day about women in tech. In fact, much the same discussions happen every year, which makes you wonder if anyone's making any progress. This talk tells you that Atlassian is, by employing some devilishly ordinary common sense. Second, this talk would have had the highest rating of Direction attendees being heard to say afterwards, "We can do this. Why aren't we doing this? Let's do this". And thirdly, it's notable that Aubrey broached this complicated topic without the aid of any slides or other visual aids - yet it was utterly compelling. Here's how Wrap summarised her talk.

Scaling Walls: The Barriers to Female Representation and How Atlassian is Eliminating Them

Aubrey Blanche, Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion, Atlassian

Aubrey Blanche

Key points

Aubrey’s job is to help Atlassian more effectively attract, recruit, retain, and develop people from traditionally under-represented groups. People in the tech industry believe tech is a meritocracy. That is not true. The Paradox of Meritocracy indicates that the more we believe in a meritocracy, the less it actually applies. A Newsweek cover last year showed the titans of Silicon Valley, and every single one of them was a white man. The increase in perspective brought about by diversity in hiring brings direct benefits in efficiency, work quality and higher achievements for all involved. When Aubrey started at Atlassian, there was a supportive attitude to diversity but nothing had been built to support it, which at least meant a clean slate. The process for recruiting a group of Sydney graduates offered a place to start - except that they had not one single application from women. One of the reasons was clearly a confidence gap. When women and men are equally qualified, women are less likely to rate themselves highly. Atlassian went to universities, tech meetups, hosted breakfasts to find out what would make women want to apply to work at Atlassian. Active encouragement to overcome the confidence gap was clearly important. Atlassian also overhauled their public image as a recruiter, changing their messaging to reflect what would appeal to anyone serious about working in tech: less on perks like beer and pizza, more about being a collaborative and flexible work environment that valued all employees equally. Positive steps also included emphasising skills over experience, ensuring imagery was diverse, and changing job ads to be more realistic and less about rock stars, gurus and ninjas.
"We don’t want rock stars. Rock stars come in at 11 and suck at building software."
Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche

Takeways

Why don’t we see women in technology in the same proportions that we see them in the general population? When PCs started being marketed in the mid 1980s, it was men and boys that were targeted, giving them a decade long head start over women and girls - despite some of the original computer scientists being women. We’re still dealing with this. We need to change the way we advertise the tech industry and the way that we brand, so that we paint a broad inclusive picture of who tech is, what tech is, and who it can be. Unconscious bias causes us to evaluate the skills of women in technical roles less, compared to their male counterparts. 10 years into their career in technology, 56% of women opt out. The comparable statistic for men is 17%. When asked, women said they didn’t feel they could thrive in predominant culture. Atlassian rejected ideas of a culture fit as being wracked with various biases, but structured behavioural interviewing for a values fit identified people who would prosper at the company. Atlassian’s methods are working. In two years, the proportion of women on staff has left from under 12% to over 45% and is moving toward equal gender parity. The huge, and often ignored, benefit to building a workforce that is diverse and inclusive is that you start attracting all kinds of employees who want to work with you. What this comes down to is that a tech company recruiting needs to be aware of, practise and hone organisational design.
"This stuff is really hard to talk about, but the more we talk about it, the more we can make progress."
Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche Sketchnotes by @the_patima.

Caveats

The culture in tech is not geared to be female-friendly - but culture is malleable and can be changed. The idea that addressing issues of diversity and inclusion is expensive is false. It’s about being smart. Interviewing is hard, and we’re not very good at using interviews to determine whether people are good at something. If your company remains committed to recruiting according to a culture fit, ask what that really means.
"Men were a third more likely than women to get an interview for a coding position. And we submitted the same code for both."
Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche

Resources

@adblanche website The Paradox of Meritocracy (article) Textio Work Rules! (book, by Laszlo Bock)

Tweets

Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche Direction 16: Aubrey Blanche " ["post_title"]=> string(44) "Direction 16: Scaling Walls - Aubrey Blanche" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(41) "direction-16-scaling-walls-aubrey-blanche" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-21 10:08:57" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-20 23:08:57" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7066" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [9]=> object(WP_Post)#241 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7061) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-20 10:00:33" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-19 23:00:33" ["post_content"]=> string(4144) "The speaker lineup for our Transform 17 Conference in Canberra from 29-30 March is complete. We've added not one, not two but three more sessions - this is going to be a seriously full day, and seriously good value! Please note our Workshop day with Dan Sheldon and Sarah Atkinson has already sold out, and it is very likely we'll have a full house for the conference, too.

Who's been added to the program?

Catherine Thompson, Transform 17 Conference Catherine Thompson Head of Digital Marketplace, DTA What's now, and What's next for the Digital Marketplace Hear what's new, and coming next for the Digital Marketplace, whether you're a buyer or seller of services. Stewart Hay, Transform 17 Conference Stewart Hay Intopia Digital accessibility in a post truth world Why are agencies still producing digital services that do not conform to the agreed Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)? Belinda Kellar, Transform 17 Conference Belinda Kellar Director, CX, DSITI Personalised and proactive service delivery for seniors The Queensland Government has been working with older people to improve access to concessions and the support they need to stay healthy and active.

Who else is speaking?

Ben Holliday, UK DWP Dan Sheldon, UK GDS Ariel Kennan, NYC Mayor's Office Sarah Atkinson, Pragmateam Jenny Hunter, Head of Digital, BOM Brian Dargan & Luke Hymers, Mentally Friendly

Why should I be at Transform 17 Conference?

As Australia’s premier conference on digital service delivery in government, you will have access to practitioners and thought-leaders working in digital transformation from around the globe. Our first Transform conference last year was a huge success, allowing us to compare progress in the UK, the US, New Zealand and Australia. Things have moved on since then (see my brief article Transforming Policy and Delivery) and Transform has grown, too. If you work in this area, the Transform 17 conference is a major avenue of professional development for you. You'll find detailed descriptions of the schedule, the speakers and their presentations at the Transform website. Register Now & Pay Later" ["post_title"]=> string(47) "Three Sessions Added to Transform 17 Conference" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(38) "sessions-added-transform-17-conference" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-19 10:06:43" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-18 23:06:43" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7061" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [10]=> object(WP_Post)#242 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7054) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 14:05:35" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 03:05:35" ["post_content"]=> string(2414) "Web Directions, and the Progessive Web Apps Sydney meetup are really excited to present an evening with Jake Archibald and Alex Russell. RSVP here, or at the SydPWA meetup site. Join two of the most influential people shaping the future of Web technologies, for an evening focussed on all things progressive web apps. Alex Russell Alex Russell invented the term and the key concepts associated with Progressive Web Apps. He works at Google on the Chrome Browser team, and among many other significant contributions to the Web he is on the W3C's Technical Architecture Group, the committee which steers the overall technical direction of the W3C, and TC39, the committee that standardises ECMAScript (AKA JavaScript). Jake Archibald Jake Archibald is well known around the world for his advocacy of, and contribution to emerging Web Standards like fetch (a much simpler API for doing what we've done forever with XMLHTTPRequest, AKA Ajax) and of course Service Worker. Alex and Jake will each talk about aspects of Progressive Web Apps from concepts to technologies, best practices to case studies. There'll be a drink or two and refreshments as well: 6:00 Doors open 6:30 Alex Russell 7:00 Jake Archibald 7:30 Networking 8:00 Time to go home, it's a school night. RSVP here, or at the SydPWA meetup site. " ["post_title"]=> string(36) "A very progressive (web app) evening" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(27) "progressive-web-app-evening" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 14:32:19" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 03:32:19" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7054" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [11]=> object(WP_Post)#243 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7038) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 13:30:00" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 02:30:00" ["post_content"]=> string(1810) "Less than two weeks to go until Transform 17, which makes it a good time for Video of the Week to revisit the closing keynote address from last year's Transform. Jared Spool is pretty much a legend in the world of user experience and usability. Writer, researcher, consultant, speaker and educator, Jared's talks, workshops, books, articles and courses have had a huge influence on a generation of designers, developers and well ... all of us. We could not have asked for a more relevant, pointed and inspirational closer for Transform 16 than Jared's talk, even though - at a conference focused on the digital transformation of government services - his talk ranged far and wide in search of the tipping point where UX is embedded in an organisation's culture. Set aside an hour or so, and enjoy a master at work.   Like to watch and read more like this? Be the first to score invitations to our events? Then jump on our once a week mailing list where we round up the week's best reading and watching on all things Web. And you'll get a complimentary digital copy of Scroll magazine.
" ["post_title"]=> string(51) "Video of the Week – Jared Spool at Transform 2016" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(37) "video-week-jared-spool-transform-2016" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 13:47:36" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 02:47:36" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7038" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [12]=> object(WP_Post)#244 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7041) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-16 10:00:17" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-15 23:00:17" ["post_content"]=> string(7106) "As the excitement builds for our Respond 17 conference (Early Bird closes 24 March), we have another Wrap magazine summary of a presentation from Respond 16. And not just any presentation. Russ Weakley is one of those Australians who has built an enviable global reputation as someone who not only has a comprehensive and detailed understanding of CSS and its role in delivering superior web experiences, he can also convey that understanding to others - which he's done in books, articles and video courses accessed by thousands of people. A particular focus of Russ's work is accessibility, a topic that strikes fear into the hearts of many but which Russ insists can be achieved without tears. This Wrap summary gives you a good idea of the clarity and directness with which Russ approaches the topic.

Building accessible web components without tears

Russ Weakley, Web Designer, Max Design

Russ Weakley

Key points

Many web applications these days are built on top of pre-existing frameworks or code bases and there is little thought to how well these components will work for different assistive devices. A range of common application components can be made accessible - quickly and easily - for all users, including forms, modal windows, drop-down menus, in-page tabs and other commonly used web components. A simple way for a web developer to understand accessibility is to try to navigate a site using only a keyboard. If they cannot perform all tasks without issues, tell which element is in focus at any time or tab around the page in a logical order, then that site has accessibility issues. Fluency or even dependence on libraries and frameworks can lead to developers forgetting core web principles: basic HTML, CSS, accessibility and progressive enhancement. If we want to make our sites available to the widest possible audience, we have to include people with various types of disability, many of whom use assistive devices for input (keyboards, trackpads, head wands, puffers, switches, touch screens, voice activated software) and output (text browsers, screen readers, magnifiers, Braille devices).
"The best time to focus on accessibility is right at the beginning of the development process, when creating the individual components in your pattern library."
Respond 16: Russ Weakley

Takeways

Screen readers often dominate discussion of assistive devices but in fact keyboard only users constitute a bigger group of users (because it includes screen readers), and all types of AT should be considered. WAI-ARIA defines a way to make websites more accessible, especially JavaScript components. We can use specific HTML attributes to define roles, state and properties for HTML elements, and thereby make those elements more meaningful for assistive technology. Dynamic content presents some specific accessibility issues. For example, content that tells a user something in response to a user action may not be conveyed by a screen reader because it has already buffered the page and can’t re-read it, or because it can only focus on one part of the screen and thus doesn’t pick up the added content. The aria-live attribute can be applied to any HTML element to tell screen readers about changed content, with different levels of urgency. Aria-relevant, with its values of additions, removals and text, gives an idea of the type of content that has changed, while role=alert can also help to define how and when the user is alerted. If a screen reader is in “forms” mode (as opposed to “read” mode), it may not announce content that is near but not directly atached to the form controls. Because of this, many users will switch between read and forms mode to make sure they get all the info they need to complete the form. Form validation can present problems for screen readers as error messages may appear after a form control has lost focus. The screen reader may have to go back over the form to find the error message. There are various ways to let assistive technology tell users about form errors. Familiarise yourself with them and use them. Modals can also present problems for AT. A user may find that they can tab outside the modal window while the modal is active, but a screen reader can’t always tell a blind user that a modal has been triggered, let alone whether the user is in or out of the modal window. We can programmatically tell the screen reader how to treat the modal and tell the user what’s going on. In-page tabs and panels also need some work to make sure a user of assistive technology understands what’s going on, what they can do, what they should do and what will happen as a result of their actions. ARIA gives us the programmatic language to do this. Note that the steps you take to achieve this will tend to be useful to all users.
"Web accessibility begins with semantic markup."
Respond 16: Russ Weakley

Caveats

As aria-live=”assertive” is not well supported by browsers, it may be preferable to stick with aria-live=”polite”. Whatever you do, make sure you test: using keyboard only yourself will tell you a lot, use accessibility checking tools, test with screen readers, and conduct formal accessibility audits when needed. It’s important to note that it may not be necessary to do all that is described here. Aim for quick wins that deliver the most accessibility to users of assistive technology. Solve the problems that prevent users from completing actions first and then aim for making things progressively easier. Respond 16: Russ Weakley

Resources

@russmaxdesign website slides

Tweets

Respond 16: Russ Weakley tweets Respond 16: Russ Weakley tweets " ["post_title"]=> string(75) "Respond 16: Building Accessible Web Components Without Tears - Russ Weakley" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(72) "respond-16-building-accessible-web-components-without-tears-russ-weakley" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 13:48:03" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 02:48:03" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7041" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [13]=> object(WP_Post)#245 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7024) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-15 11:30:27" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-15 00:30:27" ["post_content"]=> string(2906) "Wayne ThompsonWith the full program for Respond 17 now out, this week's Video Ristretto reprises the talk given by Wayne Thompson at our Direction conference in November last year, as he is again on the schedule for Respond. Once you see this talk, you'll quickly see why we wanted to get Wayne back, this time in front of an audience of front end designers. The subtitle of his Direction talk is "everything you always wanted to know about fonts* But were too afraid to ask", which is a pretty fair summary, I think you'll agree. Note that Wayne has lined up another fascinating talk for Respond, a case study of how he met the challenge of creating a font family to represent Australia's national public broadcaster, the ABC. But for now, enjoy Wayne presenting "Beyond Helvetica".  

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" ["post_title"]=> string(50) "Video Ristretto: Wayne Thompson - Beyond Helvetica" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(47) "video-ristretto-wayne-thompson-beyond-helvetica" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-14 12:05:45" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-14 01:05:45" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7024" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } [14]=> object(WP_Post)#1262 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7008) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-15 10:00:00" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-14 23:00:00" ["post_content"]=> string(2107) "Closeup on Sausages “Laws,” says that illustrious rhymer, Mr. John Godfrey Saxe, “like sausages, cease to inspire respect in proportion as we know how they are made.” I've written a fair bit about how we spend a lot of effort curating the programs for our conferences. But even then, themes often emerge organically that we never really considered. When we first imagined the conference that became Transform, about 18 months ago, we had been taking note of the rise of a "second wave" of government digital service delivery. The UK's Government Digital Service had kicked off this human centred, design and research led approach, which was adopted increasingly around the world, including in Australia with the DTO (now DTA). Our focus for Transform was originally very much "the last mile" – delivering (as, for the most part, has been the focus of GDS, and DTA and the US Digital Service) the design, development and delivery of services. But this year, in particular, as I've been chatting with speakers both international and local about the event, time and again the conversation has turned to the importance of policy. No matter how good service delivery is, poorly developed policies, or policies that - even with the best possible motivation - are created in a vacuum, will not deliver ideal outcomes. More than one speaker has talked about the need for an 'agile' approach to policy development, and the sense I get as an outsider is that policy is still very much made in a 'waterfall' manner. This issue has come up with almost every speaker, more or less spontaneously, and I feel (and hope) it is an issue that may gain momentum in the coming months. I'm sure it will get a lot of attention at Transform, in Canberra March 30th." ["post_title"]=> string(32) "Transforming Policy and Delivery" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(372) "Agile, human centred, research driven government service delivery is increasingly at the heart of the development of government digital services. But these services exist to implement policies. And yet how are these policies made, and isn't it time the development of policy became more agile, human centred, and research driven? This will be a key theme for Transform 17." ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(28) "transforming-policy-delivery" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 13:47:12" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-17 02:47:12" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(37) "https://www.webdirections.org/?p=7008" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["post_category"]=> string(1) "0" } } ["post_count"]=> int(15) ["current_post"]=> int(-1) ["in_the_loop"]=> bool(false) ["post"]=> object(WP_Post)#232 (25) { ["ID"]=> int(7115) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "3" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-03-28 11:10:49" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-03-28 00:10:49" ["post_content"]=> string(3678) "Two days of Transform 17 starts in Canberra tomorrow with a sold out day of workshops followed by a full day of talks focused on the ongoing transformation of government services. As our last warmup, we have one more presentation from Transform 16 to get you in the mood. Monica Ritz from South Australia's Office for Digital Government gave a terrific talk about spending time on secondment with the (then) Digital Transformation Office before taking ideas and processes back to her State department. Here's how we summarise it in Wrap magazine.

A Digital Transformation Story

Monica Ritz SA Office for Digital Government

Monica Ritz

Key points

Six weeks secondment with the DTO changed everything, including a true understanding of agile and of user-centred design. Government knows processes, policies, legislations but they never use the services so how do they know what their users need? The SA government is implementing the Digital Service Standards on a tight timeframe and it will be difficult. DTO is showing that agile is a culture, not a methodology tacked on.
"Agile is a culture and not scrums and stand-up."
Transform 16: Monica Ritz

Takeaways

The people who face the problem hold the key to the answers and we need to develop empathy and it’s got to be the whole team. Resolve a problem, don’t just present a solution. Resolution requires understanding the problem. An example: women prisoners were not applying for bail and it was thought the form was the problem. It turned out the form wasn’t the problem - the women had their own reasons for not wanting to apply for bail. The mantras we’re hearing: continuous improvement, taking feedback, user research, multidisciplinary teams, agile and user-centred approach - they all involve big changes for SA government. Transparency and teamwork go together - make everything open. Transform 16: Monica Ritz

Caveats

You have to show the benefits of transformation. Metrics become important. You have to be able to fail, not to celebrate your failures but to learn from them. The biggest challenge is getting staff to not just acknowledge but truly understand user-centred design. Authority and support has to come from the top down. Transform 16: Monica Ritz

Resources

@sagovau website

Tweets

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Posts by

Transform 16: A Digital Transformation Story – Monica Ritz

Two days of Transform 17 starts in Canberra tomorrow with a sold out day of workshops followed by a full day of talks focused on the ongoing transformation of government services.

As our last warmup, we have one more presentation from Transform 16 to get you in the mood. … Read more »

Transform 16: NT.GOV.AU a case study – Ann Combe

Transform 17 kicks off this week in Canberra (workshop Wednesday 29/3, conference Thursday 30/3) and it looks like it might just as compelling as last year’s event. One of the aspects of Transform 16 that was especially pleasing was the range of perspectives represented by the speakers, including … Read more »

Plan Your Professional Development for 2017

Those of us who work in Web and the digital arena don’t have to be reminded that our fields are constantly updating. Whether it’s underlying technologies, or broad strategic practices, what was cutting edge last year is often common practice this year, and out of date the next.

Both in terms … Read more »

Video of the Week – Rachel Andrew: CSS Grid Layout

Now that it has support in browsers like Chrome and Firefox, CSS Grid is being recognised as the gamechanger it is for front end designers and developers.

That support has only come this month, but those who attended our Code 16 conference in July/August last year have been preparing … Read more »

1 Week Out from Transform 17

Well, we’re just one week away from our first conference of the year, Transform 17 in Canberra on 30 March. It looks like we’ll have pretty close to a full house – at last count, there were just a couple of dozen conference … Read more »

Transform 16: Transforming Accessibility

When we held our inaugural Transform conference in Canberra last year from 18-19 May, we didn’t realise it would coincide with Global Accessibility Awareness Day on 19 May. Once we knew, we decided to organise a small event to celebrate.

There is, of course, a great crossover and overlap between the … Read more »

5 Great Reasons You Should Register for Respond 17

Respond is an event you won’t find anywhere else, bringing together as it does the whole front end team to address the challenge of delivering engaging customer experiences.

This year, Respond 17 visits Sydney (4-5 May), Melbourne (8-9 May) and for the first time … Read more »

Video Ristretto: Kevin Yank – CSS Selectors Redux

Kevin YankVideo Ristretto this week brings you Kevin Yank’s timely reminder to check the CSS you already know, including whether and how it works, and what’s coming soon in terms of both the spec and browser implementation.

We asked Kevin, Front … Read more »

Direction 16: Scaling Walls – Aubrey Blanche

Aubrey Blanche is the Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Atlassian, the Australian startup that became a global giant. Her talk at our end-of-one-year, start-of-the-next Direction conference in 2016 turned out to be notable for several reasons.

Firstly, the full title of this presentation, Scaling Walls: The Barriers to … Read more »

Three Sessions Added to Transform 17 Conference

The speaker lineup for our Transform 17 Conference in Canberra from 29-30 March is complete.

We’ve added not one, not two but three more sessions – this is going to be a seriously full day, and seriously good value!

Please note our Workshop day with Dan Sheldon and Sarah … Read more »

A very progressive (web app) evening

Web Directions, and the Progessive Web Apps Sydney meetup are really excited to present an evening with Jake Archibald and Alex Russell.

RSVP here, or at the SydPWA meetup site.

Join two of the most influential people shaping the future of Web technologies, for an … Read more »

Video of the Week – Jared Spool at Transform 2016

Less than two weeks to go until Transform 17, which makes it a good time for Video of the Week to revisit the closing keynote address from last year’s Transform.

Jared Spool is pretty much a legend in the world of user experience and usability. Writer, researcher, consultant, speaker and … Read more »

Respond 16: Building Accessible Web Components Without Tears – Russ Weakley

As the excitement builds for our Respond 17 conference (Early Bird closes 24 March), we have another Wrap magazine summary of a presentation from Respond 16.

And not just any presentation. Russ Weakley is one of those Australians who has built an enviable global reputation as someone who not … Read more »

Video Ristretto: Wayne Thompson – Beyond Helvetica

Wayne ThompsonWith the full program for Respond 17 now out, this week’s Video Ristretto reprises the talk given by Wayne Thompson at our Direction conference in November last year, as he is again on the schedule for Respond.

Once … Read more »

Transforming Policy and Delivery

Agile, human centred, research driven government service delivery is increasingly at the heart of the development of government digital services. But these services exist to implement policies. And yet how are these policies made, and isn’t it time the development of policy became more agile, human centred, and research driven? … Read more »