My experience spans communications, tech research, web design, marketing,
multimedia production, ethnography, and mobile UX. I hold degrees in
Anthropology (BA, Smith College) and Comparative Media Studies (MS, MIT).
I love to understand how people experience technology – how they harness it
for personal expression, activism, or productivity – and how that experience can
translate into better design.
Mobile UX design
Writing at Emerson College
Anthro BA at Smith College
Marketing & web content for startups
Rights-based communications positions
Freelance multimedia production
Comparative Media Studies MS at MIT
Research & teaching at MIT
Visiting Scientist at Deutsche Telekom Innovation
Digital Director at Adult Swim Originals
Senior UX Designer at Mobients (agency)
To me, “users” do not represent a
theoretical, homogenous audience.
Users are human beings living in a global
economy at a particular cultural moment.
In all my jobs, I’ve sought to understand
and improve people’s experience. I
entered the workforce during the dot-com
boom and have straddled tech and media
ever since. I love documenting stories and
deconstructing behaviors to figure out
how digital services and platforms can be
more effective for actual human beings.
For many years, I’ve used video as a
tool in this process, design and writing
as another. These days I am designing
web and mobile prototypes (sometimes
through code), running usability tests
and guerrilla research, and turning those
insights into meaningful digital products.
AAGO: for media capture & narrative storytelling
AGENCY WORK: Second screen & retail experiences
RENKU: Collaborative poetry game for creative writers
ROLE: Supervised 6 students from concept through prototype development (under PM).
Led and documented features development and weekly usability testing sessions with 5 community groups
of target users. Created a concept video for conferences, including Sesame Workshop.
PROCESS: Participatory design methodology & iterative UI
and backend development.
Interns ran a contextual inquiry of target users. Team met weekly for
9 months, refining feature sets progressively. All development was
informed by user testing (lab and field).
Wireframes for web portal
OUTCOME: High-fidelity prototype used in demo sessions. Major brands interested.
Deliverables: final report on design process; software development documentation; wireframes for related
web interface. Project required further bug-fixing for commercial release; code remains in an open repository
to be used by other developers.
PROCESS: Market and consumer research, persona development, feature prioritization,
For the TV client, I looked at market research to understand trends in second screen experiences, and
developed a service blueprint based on a user journey for the target audience. For the retail client, I led
guerrilla research using surveys and brief interviews (17 respondents at two locations) to learn more about
consumer attitudes regarding mobile use in-store, and conducted market research to forecast trends in
mobile retail experiences.
ROLE: UX strategy, research, design.
Conceptualized a responsive companion experience for a cable TV show,
and conceived roadmap improvements for a Top 50 mobile retailer, focusing
on in-store features. I also helped lead an internal rebranding project.
OUTCOME: Decks for clients (co-wrote & edited), including
documentation, research & wireframes.
For the TV client: Service blueprint, wireframes and process flows for
tablet experience. For the retail client: Customer journey and wireframes.
Recommendations for feature prioritization and wireframes showcasing
new MVPs for iPhone. For internal rebranding project: I wrote all the
website content, taught myself Bootstrap, then worked with another
person to design the site infrastructure using HTML/CSS/JS.
UI mockups for online prototype (me)
Final UI screens (designer)
PROCESS: Project conceived with
a developer during a coffee break
at a tech workshop. I planned
functionality & designed UI, he
Timeframe was 4 months. Designer made
the final screens under the guidance of
the developer and me.
ROLE: Concept, research,
usability testing, UI, online
Conducted interviews with
target demographic via snowball
sampling. Outlined features,
functions, flows. Created UI
mockups, paper prototype, online
prototype. Conducted all usability
OUTCOME: High-fidelity prototype (online only).
Developer had to finish his PhD; this otherwise-completed app has not yet been coded. Alas.
RURAL PERU: Evaluating internet entrepreneurship initiative
GERMANY: Interviewing residents in former East Berlin
SOUTHEAST ASIA: Documenting stories of displaced populations
ROLE: Concept, fieldwork, video production, analysis.
Pitched idea to MIT Entrepreneurship Center. Completed research, field interviews, analysis, film, articles.
PROCESS: Spent a summer visiting over 40 villages.
Conducted 50+ semi-structured interviews.
In the field, I was chaperoned by project managers from Rural
Telecom and a field translator. I recruited volunteers to help with
OUTCOME: Produced short documentary.
Published key findings.
Debuted film at a workshop at the National Association
for Media Literacy Education. Published article (MIT) and
conference paper (Int’l Journal of Technology, Knowledge &
Society) summarizing key issues. Proposed a follow-up project
with 5 pilot villages.
ROLE: Documentation of tsunami & conflict survivors
(Indonesia) and Burmese migrants (Thailand).
Led by my colleague. I documented her interviews.
PROCESS: Visited 6+ partner orgs. Wrote summaries of daily interviews, with photos.
Posted as summaries on our organizational blog and used in print material for fundraising.
OUTCOME: Produced articles
and photos for print and web,
which helped raise funds for
Posters, newsletters, web content
produced. Resulted in increased
donations from members.
germanyROLE: Planned and filmed field
interviews. Edited and coded
footage. Supervised designer
to plan UI for web portal.
Initiative for MIT Hyperstudio.
I worked with a team of five
researchers under the PM.
PROCESS: Two months
of collaborative planning.
Ten days of interviews
with 20+ people. Footage
was coded by me.
Interview data was intended
to be accessible as video clips
on a planned web interface
for a historical archive of the
neighborhood. I planned the
web UI and supervised a
designer to create assets and
OUTCOME: Video interviews; concept for web UI; mixed media presentations.
The project was paused due to funding limitations after initial design specifications were completed, but I
finished short videos and promotional presentations about the project.
MOBILE VIDEO: quant + qual analysis of production trends
MICROSPOTS: Surveying ideas about urban spaces
TEACHING at MIT & elsewhere
ROLE: Conceived and
carried out full study.
Explored overall trends
in the production of
video from producers on
the production of civic
(Mobile HCI ‘11).
for streaming video
Five months of
analysis of 1,000
Interviews with 7
Four months of
of 1,000 videos and
with frequent producers
to understand the
production of civic
analysis of texts,
analysis of interviews.
ROLE: Planned questions with two others; designed survey & analyzed results myself.
Built on a study by my colleagues about how people understand, map, and value their cities.
PROCESS: Reviewed prior research; composed survey questions; solicited responses via
snowball sampling; affinity analysis of results.
We ran a wide survey on peoples’ emotional ties to “microspots”, or small places in their urban environment,
based on 12 criteria for design of pedestrian landscapes by architect Jan Gehl.
OUTCOME: Received 112 responses from 11 countries, with media submissions.
Planned to turn findings into a conference paper and mobile app.
teachingCommunicating with Mobile Technology (MIT)
Teaching assistant in 2010, 2011 & 2014 (EdX) for this
class on mobile HCI and UX methods.
Promoting the Arts Through Design (MIT)
Sole instructor of this class in 2009, teaching students
how to produce artistic products for clients. The class
completed a promotional video to support fundraising
efforts for the MIT Glass Lab.
Digital Poetry (MIT)
Teaching assistant (2010)
Introduction to Digital Media (MIT)
Guest lecturer (2010 & 11)
M-Generations: 6-month mobile filmmaking
workshop with Kenyan group
Conceived and led in 2010, based on ethnographic
research. I built relationships with community
members and introduced the project as an
accessible means of entry-level filmmaking. The
intergenerational group produced a collaborative
film from over 200 individual clips. I also built project
Thanks for your attention!
@pAzonAdA // Audubon@ALUM.MIT.EDU // TAPIOCA.TV