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Think Blog

Design ideas, wit, and wisdom from Think Company.

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

Dragon Boat Festival; Why a UX Company Invests in Fun

For four years in a row, Think Company has participated in the awesomeness known as the Philadelphia Dragon Boat Festival. For those of you who are not familiar, it’s a race on the Schuylkill River with twenty team members paddling in unison to the beat of the team’s drummer. Why, you may ask, do we spend the time, effort, and money to coordinate across 30+ Thinkers and friends to participate in this event? We’re glad you asked! IT’S A DIFFERENT KIND OF TEAMWORK Our teams are exceptional at banding together with our clients around a common cause. No matter what … Read more of the post Dragon Boat Festival; Why a UX Company Invests in Fun

Our Mantra for Grace Under Pressure

We’ve all been there. We get some concerning news about a project, an important system or tool, an account, a colleague, a relationship… and our minds start racing to figure out what we’ll do in the event of the absolute worst-case outcome. It’s a stressful time, all bets are off, and in that fight-or-flight moment we also let down our guard in terms of how we talk to and treat one another—because nothing is larger than the challenge at hand and there’s no time for formality. Of course, this can happen in all areas of our lives, but it happens … Read more of the post Our Mantra for Grace Under Pressure