I’ve been a crisis online hotline volunteer for over a year, and not once has the queue been empty. During a typical three hour shift, I chat online with people in crisis from all over the United States. These are often intense cases of domestic violence or abuse. About half of my conversations are with children. As a volunteer, I’m there to help in any way I can, whether it’s providing resources or just providing a listening ear.

I’m also a UX Designer. I spend my days listening to clients, developers, and users in order to design and improve digital…


Advertisement for Nestle PureLife, a bottled water brand.

We need to talk about Nestle and water.

Clean water is important. It’s a necessity. We can all agree on that, right?

Here’s a problem: when clean bottled water is classified as a human need instead of a human right, it allows giant corporations like Nestle to help themselves to whatever water they find.

Nestle’s former chief executive officer Helmut Maucher said in a 1994 interview with the New York Times:

“Springs are like petroleum. You can always build a chocolate factory, but springs you have or you don’t have.”

And Nestle, when they first acquired Nestle PureLife water, didn’t have those springs. …


The infamous UI vs. UX ketchup bottle meme makes its rounds in the tech community every few months or so, and many UI and UX designers resent this oversimplified meme.

A glass ketchup bottle is labeled “UI” while an easy squeeze plastic ketchup bottle is labeled “UX”

At face value, this meme appears to be a quick and easy tool for educating the general public about what the differences are between UI and UX. You might look at the attractive glass bottle labeled “UI” and understand that UI might have to do more with aesthetics. The less attractive but easier to use plastic bottle labeled “UX” is meant to be stored upside down, making it easier for the user to squirt out ketchup, rather than having to smack the bottom of the glass version. …


Twitter adds a fact-checking warning to President Trump’s tweet claiming Mail-In Ballots will be fraudulent.

As a UX Designer, my job is to design user interfaces such as websites and mobile apps and build them in a way that is user friendly. I try to design in a way that is not only visually appealing but practical and logical so that users can complete the tasks they want to on their digital devices.

I wanted to analyze Twitter’s handling of Donald Trump’s recent tweet from a UX perspective.

Trump vs. Twitter

Donald Trump has been a power user on Twitter for a long time, constantly pumping out his famously controversial tweets. …


This article will cover the definition and scope of UX

Conceptualizing Interaction

The concept of interaction in the context of UX has continued to evolve with the development of technology, from a human and a computer working together to accomplish a goal, to being a very broad term referring to a vast expanse of communication and collaboration between a human and an artifact.

Human-Artifact Interaction

Human-Artifact Interaction

It’s not just the variations of devices or artifacts that users are interacting with that have changed, but the nature of the interaction itself. For example, in the early nineties, interaction usually happened on desktops on home or at work. These interactions took place with the use of a…


When analyzing processes for executing and providing as a User Experience designer, it is important to consider how well the process responds to change. Handling and adapting to change is arguably one of the most important skills a UX designer can have because of its inevitability. No matter the company or project or team a designer might find themselves working on, changes along the path to a successful product are inevitable.

Types of change

The types of change a project may undergo include changes in the product concept or vision, available technology, the client’s direction or ideas, and design ideas. …


This challenge is designed to break you out of your UI design comfort zone and get you to try new (and potentially disastrous) things! I created this challenge for my YouTube Channel. Check it out!

While it’s called a wheel spin challenge, the wheel is really just for visual effect. To choose your options use a number generator. Google has a great one that we’ll be using for the purposes of our challenge. For each category input the correct maximum number and then generate your answer! Feel free to add additional options or change the existing ones.

1. Device (4 options)

  1. iPhone XS (375px…


I have never felt more validated in my decision to take this career path than in these past few months as the Coronavirus pandemic has taken over.

As the weeks of the federal stay-at-home order in the United States drag on, more and more of my friends and loved ones are losing their jobs. At first it was the friends that worked in fields like hospitality and tourism. But as the economy buckles under the lack of money spent on anything other than toilet paper and canned beans, I’m seeing many of even my most successful friends endure pay cuts and even complete layoffs.

I’ve been incredibly lucky to work where I do. As a UX designer working for the government, my job isn’t hanging by a…


I grew up loving to read. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve craved more real-life stories, and I’ve been seeking out more memoirs than fiction. I look for stories about real people going through extraordinary circumstances. Educated by Tara Westover is the most recent memoir from my personal library that I’ve finally gotten around to finishing, and I wish I had cracked it open sooner.

I credit my own education to a lot in my life — I’ve learned what I’m passionate about and what I’m not, and it’s definitely helped me land jobs. But Tara went until she was 17…


A recent image I posted on Instagram.

When I started my Instagram account (www.instagram.com/katfairbanks) a year and a half ago, I did so with the intention of learning how to grow an audience as quickly as possible and monetize it.

I grew my audience on Instagram pretty rapidly, going from 0 to 20k in about eighteen months. I also partnered with well-known brands and made a modest amount of money per month (several hundred dollars).

I used a formula that continues to work to grow my follower count at a consistent rate – I am the admin of several Facebook groups that link back to my Instagram…

Katherine Fairbanks

UX Designer

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