The speaker at today’s 8th Light University (on 3/23/2012) was Stephanie Briones. Stephanie completed a design apprenticeship under Billy Whited. Her presentation on bridging the gap between developers and designers was the final challenge in her apprenticeship. She is the first design apprentice to complete a residency at 8th Light!
The presentation was fun. Stephanie started by presenting some of the issues that cause the gaps between the two camps and then focused on what can connect the two gaps. The final part of the presentation was designing a web application that had an overview screen, a login screen and screen to manage a subscriptions (possibly a large number). It was an interesting challenge. The audience divided up into groups based on where they were sitting with at least one designer in each group (8th Light is currently developer-heavy if that wasn’t clear already). Then each team presented one or two designs.
From listening around the office, I came to the conclusion that having Stephanie complete her apprenticeship and move onto client work is a big deal. 8th Light has had a number of developer/craftsmen apprenticeships complete and accept positions with 8th Light but we need more designers. I am very encouraged to see that Paul and Micah really do believe in growing the company in a careful way instead of trying to get big fast.