March 20, 2019 – 10-Minute Talks

10-Minute Talks

Join us for FOUR 10-minute talks in one evening! The short talk format keeps things moving and allows for some engaging Q&A between each talk. The talks are…

  1. “That was Then, This is Now – Embrace the Changing Landscape of Design” by Christine Fajardo
  2. “All you need to know about ChatBots” by Benjamin Ho
  3. “UX is More Than UX” by Beth Houlis
  4. “Thank goodness for Ralph Baer” by Kelley Muir


6:00 – 6:30 Networking and refreshments
6:30 – 7:30 Presentation
7:30 – 8:00 Networking


10 Vaughan Mall, Suite 205, Portsmouth, NH 03801
Note: This is the company that took over the Alpha Loft office space.

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Talk #1: That was Then, This is Now – Embrace the Changing Landscape of Design

Christine Fajardo
Product Design Lead at Liberty Mutual Insurance

Changes in the design profession over the last several years have decidedly taken hold. How do we, as designers, move from tracking and monitoring trends in our industry, to adapting and embracing what the future holds?

Christine’s Bio:
Christine is a Graphic Designer turned UX Designer. She is focused on creating an optimal customer experience for Liberty Mutual’s cloud-based software development and delivery platform. Christine’s previous experience includes working as a Graphic Designer in the advertising industry, and prior to that, in publications. 

Talk #2: All you need to know about ChatBots

Benjamin Ho
Sr. UX Researcher, Tyler Technologies

If you haven’t noticed, Conversational UI’s and ChatBots have been pervasive in the past several years.  Everyone wants to get in the game – from digital assistants like Google, Siri and Cortana to chatbots for customer service. But why do you need one?  How do you get started?  Is it worthwhile?  What do you need to build one? This talk covers the why-to and the how-to and learnings when building a chatbot.  As a bonus, this includes conversational UI fundamentals.

Ben’s Bio:
Ben wants to better the human condition and reduce suffering so people can work and live fulfilled. With his innate curiosity, he does this by getting to the heart of what matters most, through understanding people’s goals, underlying beliefs and reasoning. His goal with every project is to get to the heart of what matters through understanding people’s goals and underlying reasoning to better the human condition and reduce suffering so they can work and live fulfilled.

Ben is a Senior UX Researcher for Tyler Technologies and has been in the industry for 19 years.  He has been involved in multiple strategic projects delivering client insights to define the problem space.  Ben has a background in industrial design and is also a Local Leader for IxDA Maine since 2009.

Talk #3: UX is More Than UX

Beth Houlis
Director, Innovation and Communications, The RiverStone Group

The critical role UX plays in helping teams identify the right problems to solve, and then building the right solutions.

Beth’s Bio:
Beth Houlis is responsible for building a practice and culture of visual design, user research and innovation and establishing a corporate communications function at The RiverStone Group in Manchester, N.H. With more than 17 years of experience in design, innovation, communications, marketing and knowledge management, Beth is passionate about helping teams create technology solutions that solve real human problems through design, rapid prototyping and experimentation.

Beth’s work experience ranges from consumer product marketing and public relations to employee communications and crisis management. She has a degree in marketing, adverting and PR from Emerson College in Boston, and an MBA from the University of New Hampshire.

Talk #4: Thank goodness for Ralph Baer

Kelley Muir
AVP Interaction Designer, CIT

It is always surprising to me how few people know about the impact Ralph Baer, the father of video games, had on our culture and the technology we use daily. We are aiming to fix that in Manchester and trying to encourage the sparks of innovation, creativity, and play he embodied. How? By creating our own holiday- Ralph Baer Day.

Kelley’s Bio:
A strange hybrid, Kelley’s ability to walk both sides of the Designer/Developer line allows her to create rich, thoroughly in-depth experiences while still understanding the limits and constraints of the technology. Kelley was recently named one of NH Union Leader’s 40 under Forty.

The local development community has a special place Kelley’s heart; as co-organizer of New England GiveCamp and BarCamp Manchester, she tries to foster creativity and collaboration not only inside her work environment but outside it as well.

Thanks to our food and beverage sponsor this year!

Market Street Talent logo

Market Street Talent is a specialized staffing and consulting firm focused on staffing solutions for Information Technology positions. From our offices on the Seacoast of New Hampshire, we service companies across a wide range of industries from Greater Boston to Greater Portland and beyond. Learn more:

Thanks to our host this month!

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HappsNow is an all-in-one solution for live events, used for event promotion, ticket sales, box office management, and fan experience. Our technology makes it not only easy for fans to find and purchase a ticket but to also experience the event in a way never imagined. If you sell tickets, or want to offer your fans more, we can help. Learn more about HappsNow.

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