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Boxes and Arrows is devoted to the practice, innovation, and discussion of design; including graphic design, interaction design, information architecture and the design of business.

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Book in brief — Trustworthy: How the Smartest Brands Beat Cynicism and Bridge the Trust Gap

Trustworthy by Margot Bloomstein Designers can empower people to make confident decisions. Empowerment goes beyond just basic functionality: we help people meet their needs and gain a sense of fulfillment and knowledge through their interactions with screens, products, and services. Empowerment is the sense of confidence people gain by making...

Designing Respectful Tech: What is your relationship with technology?

You’ve been there before. You thought you could trust someone with a secret. You thought it would be safe, but found out later that they blabbed to everyone. Or, maybe they didn’t share it, but the way they used it felt manipulative. You gave more than you got and it didn’t feel fair. But now that it’s out there, do you even have control anymore? ...

Introduction to Ontology Concepts and Modeling

What is ontology? An ontology is a formal system for modeling concepts and their relationships. Unlike relational database systems, which are essentially interconnected tables, ontologies put a premium on the relationships between concepts by storing the information in a graph database, or triplestore. (The following examples use data...

Activating Change: A Designer’s Guide to Systems Thinking

This past year we became acutely aware of how interconnected we all are. The toilet paper shortage gave the world a glimpse at supply chains, and the pandemic as a whole was a crash course in how our healthcare system can handle crises. It can be difficult to envision how we can make a difference even if we know the systems we live in don’t function...

The Dream of a More Human Navigation Realized

Using the customer intentions method to humanize our virtual worlds In the 2010 Sci-Fi film Inception a professional thief is offered a chance at erasing his criminal history if he implants one person’s ideas into the subconscious of another person. He aims to do this by crashing the second person’s dreams. He hires a graduate architecture student...

Running Design Sprint Kickoffs Remotely

As the workforce decentralizes through the increased availability of remote employment options, teams have to learn to compensate for the lack of in-person collaboration to tackle the daily work challenges. Currently, I am the Senior UX Designer for my division and am based in the United States along with our Program Managers, Leadership and Stakeholders,...

Flawed Products Harm – A Framework to Respond

Technology products are embedded in every aspect of daily life from homes, cars, phones, schools, workplaces. They’re in entertainment, healthcare, safety, and beyond.  While technology is often billed as making things easier, faster, cheaper, and fairer, it can cause harm at scale.  People face frustration, harassment, financial loss, physical harm,...

Forget the Trail of Breadcrumbs

Enterprises often have a simplistic understanding of navigational structures in UX Design. Companies shy away from messing with known organizational schemas for fear that their users or customers will become confused and run away. We don’t give our users enough credit. As a result, most software navigational structures either reflect hierarchical...

Flawed Products Harm – A Framework to Respond

Technology products are embedded in every aspect of daily life from homes, cars, phones, schools, workplaces. They’re in entertainment, healthcare, safety, and beyond.  While technology is often billed as making things easier, faster, cheaper, and fairer, it can cause harm at scale.  People face frustration, harassment, financial loss, physical harm,...

Forget The Trail Of Breadcrumbs

Enterprises often have a simplistic understanding of navigational structures in UX Design. Companies shy away from messing with known organizational schemas for fear that their users or customers will become confused and run away. We don’t give our users enough credit. As a result, most software navigational structures either reflect hierarchical...

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