Story of some Brits living in New Zealand for the Southern Hemisphere Winter in 2004
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Friday, July 02, 2004

APCHI2004 Conference - The Big Day - My Desire Lines presentation

Worked late after the conference reception the night before to finish my presentation on Desire Lines.

As I made my way early to my session I'm approached by one of the organisers who tell me Don Norman is looking for me! Don is the keynote for conference and has been a fan of mine since he wrote The Psychology of Everyday Things (or POET for short) - later renamed, The Design of Everyday Things. Well, to discover 5 minutes before my talk track is to start that Don is looking for me is a bit like being told Mick Jagger would like to see you right now, as you step up on the way to a Best Man's speech. Oh well, Don told me he liked my paper but couldn't make the talk. He then told me he'd brought me a copy of his Voyager CD, which he'd promised me by email several months before. I was really impressed he'd remembered, he must get a whole lot of email!

Anyhow, I finally got to the talk with my number 8 wire fashioned USB device for transfering data to another laptop. William Wong was very gracious about my lateness and got everything set up nicely for my talk. I was third in line to talk so was somewhat concerned at the fantastic nature of the warm-up acts. Michael Verhaart and John Jamieson (from Eastern Institute of Technology/Massey University, New Zealand) and then Wally Smith's (University of Melbourne, Austrailia) talk about the Misrepresentation of Use in Technology Demonstrations. Oddly enough, not only was Wally's talk very well presented (like the preceeding talk) but the topic was perhaps the closest to my own PhD than I have ever seen. Most distracting given that I had to stand up and talk about something completely different straight afterwards!

Well, I finally poured forth about Desire Lines, and it seemed to go down quite well. A lot of my inspiration came from Don's early work, and though he has moved on to new areas (like Emotional Design) I have not. So perhaps the material was perhaps more reminiscent of Don's earlier work than his own later stuff. Who knows, it was actually a lot of fun to stand up to present and say, 'I'm paying for myself to attend and I've written this paper because I can't leave it alone' and 'for fun', rather than being there to represent my employer!

I overran a little, partly because my brain switches off a bit when I'm presenting. I saw William's various signs (10 minutes left) and some others, and then a curious sign saying 'STOP NOW!' So, I only managed the one minute for questions instead of the prescribed five minutes.

Several people asked for copies of my Desire Lines Presentation Slides so they're on my website now.

Very pleased to get that out of the way I was happy to later kick-off and enjoy the formal conference dinner; Maori dancing; etc.

Didn't see a whole lot of Rotorua (which is known as RotoVegas in NZ) but had a great time meeting lots of people who have a similar job to mine.


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