Human Centered Design Intern Blog 2018


Hi, My name is Jessica Alzamora and I am the Human Centered Design Intern for TSAI CITY 2018. This position is an amazing opportunity to further my understanding of design and the design process, as well as make a positive impact on the CITY community. By the end of the school year I hope to have created a blog style resource that displays interviews with professional designers ,and information about design thinking for Yale students interested in learning more. As my design project I also hope to create a physical and online design board. This will be a space for students looking for opportunities to post their skills, next to a space for teams looking for new teammates to post their requests. 

About Me:

I am a senior Mechanical Engineering Major who hopes to pursue design in the real world. Because of my schooling I tend to approach, and think about design from an engineers point of view. This year I hope to use this position as an opportunity to research and learn about design from the perspectives of different professions. 

At Yale I am part of several engineering clubs but also co-president of Design for America at Yale. Design for America (DFA) is a club that uses design thinking to tackle problems in New Haven. At the beginning of every year we reach out to different community groups and local institutions. We ask them if there is a project that they have always wanted to do but don't have the time, people, or money to start. We use these problems as a chance to both give back, and teach design thinking to Yale students through hands on experience. In addition to our projects we  give workshops for students from k - 12 and different professional schools at Yale, as well as bring in speakers three times a semester to talk about using design in a professional setting. 

To learn more about DFA national visit:

To learn more about DFA at Yale and the projects we have done (highly suggested some of them are super cool) visit:

What is Human Centered Design

Human Centered Design is a framework that allows people in various fields to solve problems by relying on information gathered from user interviews. 

The term was popularized by a famous design thinking firm called IDEO, but the idea of creating a framework for good design is much older. 

Check out this link to learn more about the origins of design thinking:

The Design Process

Though there are lots of different "design process'" they all follow a similar framework and most importantly emphasize the user as the major source of information. The idea is that instead of simply letting an engineer design the most efficient bike, the HCD process encourages the engineer to design a bike that is also comfortable to ride, easy to steer, and with handles that are easy to grasp. 

Below I will discuss the design process that we teach through Design for America at Yale. 

The deisgn process is broken up into two major phases, the Understand phase and the Create phase.


  • Identify: The first step is where you identify a problem in the world. This can be a problem you have noticed from personal experience, or a problem that someone posed to you. Ex: Reducing waste produced on college campuses or homelessness
  • Immerse: This is the step where you learn as much as you can about our problem. Try to learn about it from several points of view. Every problem has multiple stake holders, and each of them will have a different perspective on the problem. Interview all of them! Try not to ask leading questions, instead focus on asking broad questions about their experience. For instance when it comes to reducing waste on a college campus you can talk to maintenance, students, professors, organizers of local clubs, professionals who have designed programs for other schools, etc. One of the best things you can do in the Immerse phase is to talk to your user, and talk to a professional or someone who knows much more about the problem then you do. With these interviews we often find out that the problem you thought existed isn't the real problem at all.
  • Re-frame: You have just interviewed a lot of different people. Now try to parse out common themes in all of the interviews. This is the stage that allows you to narrow your problem space, but also identify the real problem. For instance you could have talked to lots of people about homelessness in your community, they talked about a million different things about what they would liked changed, everything from better government regulations to help with resumes. However the thing everyone had in common was that they mentioned how hard it is to get a good winter coat. That is your new problem! How Can We make it easier for the homeless to receive and acquire winter coats. 


  • Ideate: This is the fun part. Ideation in a fun term that basically means brainstorming. This is where you tackle your re-framed problem by coming up with as many ideas as possible. Don't restrict yourself, even crazy ideas are good ideas. After you have a list (or some sticky notes) with all of your ideas start to narrow them down. Try to think about three different things when evaluating your idea, does it solve my users problem, is it practical (does the scope match what I can implement), and is it feasible (do I have access to the technology or skills needed to make this idea happen). 
  • Build: Pick the three ideas you are most excited about and make some prototypes. These don't have to be fully developed and working ideas. They just need to be good enough to explain to a user what your idea is. Prototypes come in all sorts of forms, everything from a story board to a physical working model. The most important thing is to think about the prototype as a means through which to test a certain assumption about your solution or idea.
  • Test: This is the most important part of the process, put your users in front of your prototype. Have them use it, explain how you want them to use it, and record their thoughts and suggestions. Once again, try not to lead them to the answers you want. Instead ask them general questions about the experience of the product.

Repeat, or in design terms Iterate

Take the information you have about the prototype and uses it to jump back to the re-frame step. Make sure you are still answering the question you thought you were answering. Re-brainstorm, and build a new prototype. Do it again! Keep going until you have solved your problem.

Follow this process until you feel confident that you have solved the problem you set out to solve. Pivots are ok, often times you realize the problem you wanted to solve wasn't the problem at all. The take away should be that without talking to our users, we often assume we know what their experience is, and therefore design our solutions or products badly. By talking to them we get insight into how they actually want to and can use our products, and therefore can design easier to use solutions.


The Cooper Hewitt Museum

The Cooper Hewitt Museum is a museum focused on providing the public with a fundamental knowledge of design. It explores the ways in which design exists: as a way to track the values of our society, as a method to solve problems, and a unique way to experience a museum. 

Inclusivity in Design:

My favorite part of the museum was an exhibit that presented various objects that had been designed for people with disabilities. The idea of the exhibit was to question the very notion of "designing for disabilities" as inherently non-inclusive, instead of simply thinking of design as a way to improve peoples lives. The solutions ranged from a simplified radio for Alzheimer patients (one in which the user simply lift a handle instead of mess with buttons to turn it on). Others included a walker decked out with herbs to be used in a nursing home kitchen (including the residents in the meal prep process) and a dog made out of soap that could be washed while simultaneously helping the elderly (with dementia) wash themselves. My grandmother currently suffers from Alzheimers and I found this exhibit incredibly persuasive. 

The Pen:

One of the most unique aspects of the museum is the way that it strives to design new ways for visitors to interact with the material. The ideal visitor experience includes a statement along the lines of "wow, this is nothing like any other museum I have been too before." 

The pen is like an in person pinterest board, it allows the visitor to collect every icon or idea that they find interesting in the museum by simply pressing the pen to the item. The pen also created a way for the museum to display the part of their collection not currently on display. Using large touch screen tables visitors could explore the collection as well as edit and design objects from scratch (using 3D rendering). 

The Seven Sins:

One of the most thought provoking exhibits of the museum was the Seven Sins exhibit. This exhibit showed how society tends to create creative and beautifully designed items to fulfill our desires. For example it suggested that greed pushed us to design objects such as wallets, and cash registers. Or that we design a lot of household appliances out of sloth. If you think about it everything from roombas to coffeemakers are intended to make our lives "easier."

Interview with Joe Zinter

I had a chance to talk with Joe Zinter who is the associate director of Center of Innovation Engineering and Design at Yale. He teaches classes that use the design process to solve real world problems.

What would you call your occupation?

Primarily an Educator, but in some ways I have two jobs, I am assistant director of the CEID but also a facilitator. In the classes I teach, the students quickly learn more about their topic than I know, and as a result I really act as a choreographer who points them in the right directions and connects them to important resources. As Assistant Director I work in a much more fluid environment. My goal is to try and provide tools and resources for students, courses, and clubs so that they can realize their designs. 

How did you get involved with design?

Most of my childhood I was surrounded by tools, my father was a machinest and handy-man. He taught me to look at every piece of raw material as though it had something embedded inside of it already. I gained a high appreciation for the built world which led me to study physics and applied physics in college. This gave me a deeper understanding of how the built world follows the rules of nature. 

After college I moved to a job in the medical device field and for the first time gained an appreciation for how technology could make a difference in someones life. Someone who received a chest implant could go from not being able to walk around the house without getting fatigued, to running around a playing with their grandchildren the next day.

After that, I went back to school to get a PHD in designing mechanical systems, and as a graduate student was exposed to education as a TF. That experience helped me find my passion, I got so much joy out of working with the students. Now I have the privileged to work with and be surrounded by some of the finest students in the world. 

What is your design process?

There are two ways that I could answer that. First is what the actual process is, and what is the mindset of that process. The other is in terms of tools and techniques, this is what I would consider the structured design processes you can look up online. But mindset is equally or more important, the process has to be recognized as a guide. Only with a proper mindset can you effectively navigate the "design process". 

The three mindsets that I think are really important are:

1) That good design sits at the intersection of Desirability, Viability and Feasibility. Viability is the hardest to describe and understand. You have to look at an idea and think, is it a sustainable idea? Viability distinguishes invention from innovation. The transistor is an incredible invention but not until it became economical and scale-able (by a reduction in size) did it transform the world. 

2) The second mindset comes from a former mentor who said "you don't get to chose not to have problems, but you get to choose what problems you have." Design is a series of decisions with its own consequences, and we get to chose which consequences we want to tackle or face. 

3) The third mindset is striking the balance between self confidence and self awareness. Something I try to do in the classroom is instilling a student with enough confidence to share the idea, get feedback and iterate. But I also want them to have the self awareness to truly asses whether the designs are solving the problem.

Design is not about selling people on what the best idea is, when you present ideas you are trying to show what is possible. 

How do you think your design process is different than those used in other fields? What is the same?

I struggle to answer that because the whole idea of different types of processes doesn't sit well with me, it over prescribes a single process to every discipline. We all have relatively the same process, we start with collecting data in the real world, then we synthesize to find and target rich design opportunities, we iterate and then evaluate the ideas through a series of lenses. This is what allows us to pull the idea back to the real world. If the idea works it can be implemented. This idea of following an idea from concrete to abstract back to concrete is simple and robust, the duration may be different in different fields and the activities different, but the general arc is the same. 

What is the hardest part and easiest part about teaching design thinking?

The easiest part is getting people interested. There are a lot of really smart and ambitious students who are excited about working on real-world, open ended problems, in the structure of a classroom. The hardest part is for students to recognize how challenging the process actually is.

What do you think is the best example of good design?

A design I find very inspiring is the key ring. When I give lecture or workshops 

Designing the Student Job Board: An On-going Project

At the beginning of this internship I attempted to identify a project that could address a fundamental need in the student population. Multiple people had brought up to me how difficult it is to connect people on campus with ideas, to the people on campus that have the skills and desire to help make those ideas a reality. 

I started with the idea of creating a "self employment" board that would allow students to post skills like graphic design, and photography, online. When centers such as TSAI CITY or the CEID need a job done, whether its lighting design or photography, they can send requests to different students. This is different than current job postings because these would be one time jobs, and specifically jobs that revolve around skills students already have or want to develop professionally. 

We then considered different ways to make the board physical as well as online, which led us to a whole slew of new ideas.

The First Prototype

Screenshot (180).png

The first prototype was "built" on SolidWorks with the idea of making the board interactive. Six different planks would spin with information. On one side there would be information about potential opportunities, and on the other side there would be a picture to keep the board visually engaging.


The Second Prototype

The more physical board was exciting and interactive, but based on reviews it was potentially to bulky for the streamlined look of the TSAI CITY center. We decided to brainstorm a more "streamlined" physical look. 

The new board will be more "bulletin board" style but with color coded clip-board clips that allow students to post opportunities and skills available. 

However, we were still struggling to design a creative way for students to submit their information online without creating a too time intensive job for the CITY employee on the other end. 

The Final Prototype

Online there will be an up-to-date picture of the board and its posts, as well as a button to automatically submit either a "Skills Available" or "Opportunity Available" form. These are auto-formated using a widget for Google Forms that allows you to create a pdf of the final form, and then fills in specifically marked spaces with information submitted through a google form. This makes the process streamlined not only for the student but also the TSAI CITY employee. Now the CITY employee doesn't need to copy and paste each answer from a google form.The CITY employee only needs to print out pre-filled pdf sheets that automatically appear in their google drive, and clip them to the board once a week. The student can either come in person and fill out a form physically or do it online. 

This is a streamlined and effective solution for everyone involved. 


The Museum of Art and Design

MAD was a great opportunity to explore a museum established to celebrate the intersection between art and design. 

The Exhibit (Femmenage)

Miriam Schapiro used her work to explore the ways in which "crafting" isn't considered art. These more traditional feminine art forms (such as interior design, sewing, crochet) use the same processes that formal artists use, and yet they are considered "women's" busywork. Miriam was a pioneering feminine artist whose work pushed the art world to reconsider "decorating" as artistic.

The Experience and the Building

One of the coolest parts of the MAD is the fellowship program that funds artists and houses them on the top floor. Visitors are encouraged to start on the top floor, and watch the artists work. These artists have open doors and we were invited to listen to them present and then watch them at their work.

Cleverly, guests are told to start at the top floor by elevator, and make their way downward by the stairs. The different floors not only allowed for a natural separation between exhibit but also allows us to interact with the buildings shape. The building is a trapezoid shape, where the back two corners act as a triangle shaped stairway with beautiful windows that look out onto Columbus circle. 

Final Thoughts

As I walked away from the museum I couldn't help but think about the definition of "design" which has evolved as I have embarked on this internship. I had always thought of design as an active decision making process, one that is almost more like engineering then like art. This museum as well as the Cooper Hewitt museum has pushed me to reconsider my idea of "design" and struggle with how art and design interact. 


What I learned from Becky Slogeris

Becky is a Professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art where see teaches classes in their Social Design Program. She came to visit CITY and I had the opportunity to sit down with her and talk about Design Thinking, Human Centered Design, and how to pursue a career in Social Design. 

Becky graduated from college with a degree in graphic design and was struggling to find a way to use her skills to help people. She felt that graphic design/designers often made beautiful work that never solved a problem. While on the other hand traditional volunteering, such as for Teach America or another organization, wouldn't let her use the skills she was best at to improve the lives of others. This seems to be a common trend with designers. There are many opportunities that allow students and professionals to help others, but few that allow us to use our skills and training to do so (instead of pushing papers). 

Through the MICA masters degree program Becky found a way to practice Social Design and hone her skills. Now she teaches both at the masters program as well as at a local highschool. 

How would you define design?

Hmm...thats difficult....If I was trying to identify what all types of design have in common I would have to say "creating something with a user and a purpose in mind"

With that in mind, how would you describe social design or human centered design. 

I often describe social design as "social" because it is collaborative and more importantly grounded in social issues and injustice. 

I would describe design thinking as an isolated process, one that doesn't necessarily need an end user. 

I understand that, like you can use design thinking to explore a problem, whether this is only a exercise on paper, or if it will end with a physical solution.

Yes exactly, where HCD ensures is a process that ensures that design thinking has a user. That being said Social Design is the Umbrella that includes it all. 

Artists create their own problems to solve while designers solve other peopls problems

If you were going to suggest how students could continue practicing design after college how would you suggest they do that?

I would encourage them to try and teach their co-workers about it. To start with workshops, and ways you can introduce the process even as an entry level position. Outside of the office you could always find meet-ups with people have similar ideas and are passonite about the same problems, and use whatever portfolio you have to start a conversation about new projects. 

If you were going to suggest a couple of resources for students new to graphic design or who want to learn more about social design what would you suggest?

Thinking with Type (Ellen Luctan)

Graphic Design the new basics (Ellen Luctan)

IDEO courses are well done and provide lots of new resources

Great Classes at yale for students interested in Design

This is a list of classes that either friends have suggested or I have taken that give some experience in design thinking or help you improve skills that are useful in design (whether you are an architect, engineer, or english major). 

  • Introduction to Architecture (Arch 150)
  • Globalization Space (ARCH 341)
  • Basic Drawing (ART 114)
  • Engineering Innovation and Design (ENAS 118)
  • Intro to Computer Science (CPSC 201)
  • Lab Instr Design and Mechanical Arts (machining class) (Chem 562L)
  • Visual Thinking (Art 111)
  • Drawing Architecture (Arch 154)
  • Intro to Cultural Antrhopology (ANTH 110)
  • Media and Medicine in Modern America (AMST 247)
  • Materials in Architecture (ARCH 162)
  • Medical Device Design (BENG 404)
  • Musical Acoustics and Instrumental Design (ENAS 344)
  • Ecological and Urban Design (425)
  • Mechatronics (ENAS 994)

Interview With Alexander Fellson:


Architect and Ecological Designer

What would you call your occupation?

I would call myself a landscape architect and ecologist. 

What got you interested in the design process and HCD?

I have always been interested in this bridge between humans and nature. I like learning about how people modify and influence nature and how [nature] becomes a part of society. As an undergrad I was searching for how I could study that. I started with botany but that was very plant focused....I wanted to find the human element. I later worked in a Native American reservation in Wisconsin where I worked on how their culture used and celebrated the natural plants. 

One day I met this guy, who literally had a warehouse filled with a huge map of the state of Wisconsin. They were using this to test different places for recreational sites  in Wisconsin, this sent me on a path towards understanding how landscape architecture and ecology intersected.

What is your design process?

Design is a methodology that you learn over time and through making lots of assumptions and then breaking them down and deconstructing them. As you rebuild your knowledge base, your building a scaffolding in your mind. 

I noticed that you use a roll of trace paper when you take notes...

There is a link between the hand and mind, and the way you express it is different for each person. I like the way the roll of paper represents time, as I write down my thoughts they naturally get recorded in a linear format, its like a conveyor belt. You also learn a lot from looking at other people's design process. There is also an aesthetic to the way you work, and it starts to get caught up in your design thinking and the way you solve problems. 

Is going to school for design necessary?

I wasn't really a designer before graduate school, I did arts and crafts, and I think everyone uses a type of latent design thinking. Design school expands your aesthetic and what your process is.

In your class Ecological and Urban Design you talk a lot about Designed Experiments, what are they and how do they bring design thinking into ecology?

Well researchers have a very different mind-set, a different process, researchers like that have more structure and less open ended. They are much more comfortable studying within a system in order to understand how it works. On the other hand architects like to study a system in order to understand how they can influence and/or form a new system. There has always been a one way street of knowledge from ecologists to designers. I don't think its the personalities of the people so much as the trainning that reinforces this structure. Designed experiments are ways in which architects can propose changes/designs that simultaneoulsly improve the environment for humans and also evaluate the way the environment is affected by them. 

(I will interject here to explain this concept more. Fellson has detailed a set of guidelines that help architects propose designs to ecologists in a way that convinces them to participate in development projects that they would otherwise find problematic. For example, a storm water drainage system can be implemented into a community with the dual purpose of re-directing the water but also testing the water quality in order to get the sense of the river's health).

What do you think is the best example of good design?

Bridges are really interesting, the quality of engineering and aesthetic quality necessary are really interesting. In general things that require heavy engineering and specific construction practices. I also am really interested in design strategies that evolve and adapt overtime such as bryant park, the flexibility is an interesting model, so is the emerald necklace in Boston.

But a pencil is also a nice design, it is essentially a holder for graphite but also improves the functionality by being able to be sharpened. 

What is something you always wanted to fix or re-design?

Transportation systems in cities!

What books or resources would you give to a student interested in learning more about design?

To take design seriously its essential to take classes and find mentors. Also, a lot of real world design processes are less about the "design" and more about what happens in terms of communication and translation between different stakeholders in the project. 

Interview with Dr. David Rosenthal

Professor for the Yale Medical School, Physician and Designer


What would you call your occupation? 

Broadly a primary care physician. So a doctor who sees patients formally but also in a clinic I run for a homeless VA in Connecticut. I am also on the faculty at the (Yale) medical school. 

What got you interested in the design process and Human Centered Design?

Before I was in medicine I was a visual and enviromental studies major, then a fiction and non-fiction film maker. I was really interested in narratives and especially patient narratives. In medical school I still worked on narratives, in particular patients. This got me interested in health information technology (digital health technology) and actually started a company around health and wellness. Through this I learned a lot about designing software, both front and back end developing and the importance of user testing. 

When doing more training in residency I got really interested in human centered design and was exposed to IDEO. I did a residency with IDO and saw how they design their products, which was the first place I got interested in the "design thinking process".

What is your design process?

As a doctor we see lots of problems every single day, our job is to fix problems every day. The question is often more of a scoping one, there are lots of things that physicians and clinicians are asked to fix on a micro scale. Every day being a doctor is designing assessments, which can be seen as a design frame work and the patient as the user. 

Whether it's taking a medicine once a day or three times a day based on the users daily habits, working with patients is an iterative process. The process of being a clinician is one of design and fixing problems.

From a more administrative standpoint, designing clinics for a larger population, or a clinic for a specific set of patients is human centered design. Many physicians however don't have the training necessary, but more and more different types of design thinking, quality improvement, LEAN and Six Sigma training are really big in health care right now. 

How do you think your design process is different from other fields? What is the same?

No doubt very different, especially the technology. My boss once described design thinking as building lego blocks for adults, but the stakes in health care are often much greater. 

Changing something in health care, even the way something looks on a website, or the flow of a room, there is significant stakes. You could kill people or have serious consequences, because of that there are tremendous amounts of resistance. 

Its nice to design something from scratch because there is no existing architecture, changing something pre-existing is really really heard. Its also hard to do any sort of rapid prototyping, years of FDA processes and clinical trials before you can user test. This means that functionally rapid prototyping is hard in health care. It happens, but more at the fringes than at the core. 

What do you think is a/the best example of good design?

When you get a new apple product, and you open the box and it guides you through start up, the entire process is clean and simple. Its prescriptive, there isn't much choice, and the users "arc" of use is limited and constrained. This is a good thing because its very clear what is happening and what needs to happen next. That's my ideal user experience, what its like when you open up an apple product. Everything from what the packaging looks like to how it walks you through the process. 

The McDonalds drive through lane is also very clear and clean, its easy to tell what they prioritize in how they present their menu options. It's all pictures, the choices are clear and limited. Constraining is really hard, especially in health care. People don't like constraints, but partly its because the current health care system isn't designed for patients or for doctors.

What is something you always wanted to fix/re-design

Right now redesigning the process to get people on a certain drug, I think that would help tackle the opioid problem, maybe with an app or some other system. In general I would love to re-design and fix health care intensives and how physicians get paid. I also wish we could re-design a system for how people are determined to be disabled.

What books/resources would you give to a student interested in learning more about design?

The IDEO tool kit, but I would also look and see what leaders of different fields are reading right now. At Virginia Mason, Bon Ku is a physician that created a health design boot camp. Stacy Chang is someone else, she used to be the head of health care for IDEO. The previous surgeon general was also very involved with working with IDEO and did all sorts of interesting design thinking for the office of the surgeon general. 

Claire Miflin 

Architect and Biomimicry Masters Student at Arizona State University

Biomimicry is the idea that we can design better solutions by taking note of how nature solves different problems. Claire is part of a professionals program that allows people from different backgrounds to study and practice the idea of using biomimcry as a way to solve problems. 

claire 2.jpg

What would you call your occupation?

Architect by trainning. My trainning has always been very practical.

Why did you start studying biomimicry

I was interested in studying biomimicry as a way to expand my horizons and understand how to approach designing buildings better. I try to create less waste, especially in density in terms of NYC, biomimicry helped structure that process somehow, ecological performance and material consumption and zero waste but by looking at the problem from an ecology level. 

Is everyone in your class an architect?

Its actually very diverse for example some are architects, ones a mechanical engineering- he actually works for the university now developing a program that integrates biomimicry and engineering better. 

What's an example of how biomimicry can be used in architecture?

One project we did was designing different collars for trees, collars used for tree houses and research pavilions. The biomimicry process encourages us to realize that the tree gets larger and that the collar has to adjust. We looked at different organisms and different hooking mechanisms they use to designing a hook that allows the tree to grow, but is also stable enough to hold a platform. 

There is actually a database at that is a great place to look for inspiration and design ideas based on nature.

What is your design process like? How do you approach problems?

They have come up with a process based on multiple fields to describe biomimicry. Say you have a problem, say the trees example, how does nature attach, we look at a hundred biological examples and come with some abstracted design pricincpal based off of the natural example and use it to design a solution.

We use specific phrases such as "expanding the solution space" which basically means coming up with novel ideas. We talk about "life's principals" to see how sustainable something is, nature is functional design or readily available materials. We talk about green chemicals or more simple chemical reactions to stay sustainable. 

How does the biological approach integrate into architecture.

I actually find it very difficult to integrate it into architecture directly. Architecture is always solving different issues at once, and often we cant spend lots of money on research vs a product where you have funding. Biomimcry is not super applicable, but could be in the future, such as self cleaning glass or resistant paints.

What is your design process like for architecture?

With architecture the design process starts with looking at the site and the resources, solar, water, energy and the context of the site. We play with the wind, gradient changes and the program of the building. I actually hate blank sites without a lot of constraints, its difficult to design from scrap. I prefer the difficult sites like historical sites or with established neighbors. 

If its an open ended design you almost have to create your own agenda. 

What do you think is an example of good design?

A potato masher I own, instead of having a vertical handle it has a horizontal handle and its more ergonomic. You have a chance to push down with your weight and the different hole sizes helps mash it without getting clogged up. 

What is something you always wanted to fix or re-design?

A sink strainer I once saw, it was basically the shape of an ink blot, but it blocked everything from the sink while also floating with the sink filled up. The crud would get caught in the lip and it never helped draining. This is in contrast with the metal strainers that fit perfectly in the sink and stay at the bottom of the sink when it fills with water. 

How To Learn More: A collection of Resources from various PROFESSIONALS

Books I read During the Internship

  • Design of Everyday Things (Norman)
  • Humble masterpieces: 1000 everyday marvels of design (Antonelli)
  • The Death and Life of Great American Cities (Jane Jacobs)
  • Cradle to Cradle (Michael Braungart)

Dr. Alexandra Mack's suggestions - anthropologist and former human center designer for xerox

Dr. Alexandra came and spoke to Design for America at Yale to talk about how anthropology can be integrated into an engineering company to produce more human centered designs. She also talked about how to pursue a job in human centered design, namely that there are many design firms out there looking to hire and train out of college candidates with little formal experience. 

Communities, places to learn and learn about jobs:

• Anthrodesign on Yahoo groups

• Ethnography hangout Slack channel


• Wendy Gunn, Design Anthropology

 • Sam Ladner, Practical Ethnograpy

• Rita Denny and Patti Sunderland, Handbook of Anthropology in Business and Doing Anthropology in Consumer Research

• Sue Squires and Brian Byrne, Creating Breakthrough Ideas

• Kathy Baxter, Understanding Your Users

Graphic Design Suggestions from Becky Slogeris


• Type Personality Quiz -

• Kerning Game -

• Shape Type Game -

• Rag Time Game -

• Thinking With Type, Ellen Lupton -

• Upping Your Type Game by Jessica Hische -

• Helvetica -

• Hillman Curtis Artist Series - David Carson -

• Butterick’s Practical Typography -

• What The Font -

• Lost Type Co-op -

• The League Of Movable Type - Color

• Color Matching Game -

• Color Theory for Designers -

• The Tricky Science of Color Perception -

• Colourlovers color trends -

• Adobe Kuler -

• Pantone Fall 2013 Fashion Color -


• Graphic Design the New Basics, Ellen Lupton and Jennifer Cole Phillips -

• Hillman Curtis Artist Series - Milton Glaser -

• The Noun Project - '


• Paula Scher on designing in and with perspective -

• Live Surface - Apply Free weekly design lessons -