Think Blog

Design ideas, wit, and wisdom from Think Company.

Exciting Leadership Changes at Think Company

I am happy to announce that our final commemoration of Think Company’s 10-year anniversary is an exciting change to the makeup of our executive team. But before I share the details, the backstory: Ten years ago Brian, Russ, and I were embedded on-site at Think Company’s first client’s office in Horsham, PA. Since we didn’t have studio space of our own yet, the three of us often took walks together around the grounds of the office park during the lunch hour to discuss Think Company stuff in private. I’ll never forget the day—probably sometime in the summer or fall of … Read more of the post Exciting Leadership Changes at Think Company

Data Visualization, and Identifying The True Challenge Within The Question

It started when a developer on a client’s team approached me with a question: “Hey, you know D3.js right? Could you help us visualize some data?” “Of course,” I said. That’s one of the reasons they brought us in, after all! “What are you trying to achieve?” Asking one seemingly simple question was the difference between delivering the requested solution and implementing a solution that went beyond the request to expose even more useful information. We were in the middle of reskinning a legacy application built in a tech stack from a bygone era. Most of the codebase was decades … Read more of the post Data Visualization, and Identifying The True Challenge Within The Question

Hour of Code: Helping Philly Kids Visualize a Career in Computers

“Hmm. Can I use a callback function to explode this zombie?” Earlier this month, three of our Thinkers—TJ Nicolaides, Brendan McKeown, and myself—arrived at Dr. Ethel Allen School in Strawberry Mansion to participate in CS4Philly‘s Hour of Code, along with other members of the Philadelphia Alliance for Capital and Technologies and Philly CoderDojo. What did we have to offer to the kids? Well, they certainly didn’t need us to teach them how to code! Kids are natural coders. Put them in front of a Chromebook, give them access to a great programming environment, and give them some Minecraft Challenges to … Read more of the post Hour of Code: Helping Philly Kids Visualize a Career in Computers

Reflections on 2017

Was 2017 a “great year”? Even in the most historically conventional of circumstances, that would be a highly subjective statement to make—particularly to individuals that could have been on any number of personal rollercoaster rides over the past 12 months. But couple that with the feeling that our collective baseline is more bruised than usual right now, and I just can’t proceed without acknowledging the very real struggles many of us right now are facing—particularly on the global stage, and the divides that hopefully we can bridge in the coming year(s) through the hallmarks of great design: Empathy, respect, and … Read more of the post Reflections on 2017

Web Accessibility: What You Say vs. What I Hear

My background is in web design and development. These days, I’m an Accessibility Specialist advocating on behalf of the user. I use assistive technology to audit, review, and examine software the way a person with a disability might use it. I then work with product teams to identify and resolve these issues. And I’ve noticed a recurring theme. Issues identified through assistive technology such as screen readers are often treated as bugs—backlogged and forgotten in lieu of new feature development. Let me be clear: I think looking at accessibility this way is all wrong. Accessibility issues are missed requirements Looking … Read more of the post Web Accessibility: What You Say vs. What I Hear