Raising Funds and Raising the Bar: Hats Off to Practice Fusion

When Practice Fusion recently announced it’s spectacular $70M financing round, cheers went up not only throughout the healthcare sector, where the company is one of the fastest growing health tech pioneers, but also within the halls of Cooper, where the design and prototype for Practice Fusion’s 2013 IxDA award-winning ipad app was born.

Stefan Klocek, former Cooperista and now Practice Fusion’s Senior Director of Design, had a critical role in the development of that iPad application while at Cooper, and now that he has joined Practice Fusion, he took a moment to get on the phone with us and share his unique inside perspective on the impact design can have on businesses.

“It’s not been hard to trace how Cooper’s original design for Practice Fusion’s mobile platform became a seminal turning point in how our business makes products today,” Klocek said, after we exchanged verbal high-fives. “Following the Cooper engagement I’ve been able to see firsthand how the organization shifted its perspective from design being something added on later, to actually driving decisions around branding and product development.”

And Practice Fusion’s investment in design is growing. “Our design team went from 5 to 17 people in six months,”Klocek added. “The original mobile app project that Practice Fusion worked on with Cooper really demonstrated to everyone here the value of design, ultimately driving decisions to rebrand our website and redesign our flagship product.”

To which we say, huzzah!

Big congratulations to Practice Fusion for continuing to raise the bar and the standard of data management for healthcare.

UX Boot Camp: Canine Companions for Independence

Join Cooper, Canine Companions for Independence and designers from all over the world, November 19-22 in San Francisco, CA, for the last UX Boot Camp of 2013.

The Goal:

Create interactions and experiences that stimulate memory and cognitive functions to facilitate communication between veterans and their service dogs

The Team:

Designers, Product Managers and Developers from around the world will converge on the Cooper offices for 4 days to immerse themselves in Cooper’s Goal-Directed Design methods and take their design-thinking to a whole new level.

The Client:

Canine Companions for Independence, a California based non-profit, enhances the lives of individuals with disabilities by providing highly trained assistance dogs and ongoing support.

Save your seat now!

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Explore New Interaction Paradigms at UX Boot Camp: Wikimedia

Advance and apply your UX design skills to a meaningful real-world problem in this intensive, hands-on workshop

BootCamp_WEB

This September, join Wikimedia, Cooper, and design-thinkers from around the world as we find new ways to spread knowledge through mobile Wikipedia. In this four-day workshop, you’ll use new UX skills to make mobile content contribution more approachable, intuitive, and less reliant on traditional input methods like typing. If you’ve wanted an excuse to explore new interaction paradigms and stay ahead of the design pack, this is your chance. Best of all, you get to do all of that in the creative classroom setting of Alan and Sue Cooper’s 50-acre ranch in Petaluma, CA.

Register now: UX Boot Camp: WikimediaSeptember 17-20, Petaluma, CA

What’s in it for you?

  • Learn new interaction techniques and approaches under the guidance of industry leaders, including Alan Cooper
  • Learn how to think through a problem from both a design and business perspective, rather than blindly applying methods by rote.
  • Energize your practice and make new connections by working on a real-world challenge with peers from around the world.
  • Beef up your portfolio with a smart, new design concept
  • Pick up leadership and collaboration skills that will help you better navigate your work environment.

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OneNote for Interaction Designers, Part 3: Research and Presentation

OneNote is, as you’ve seen in the prior posts (OneNote for Interaction Designers and OneNote for Interaction Designers: the Nuts and Bolts, awesome for design meetings. But it’s also useful in research and client presentations, too.

How we use it in research

[From the video, slightly edited:] Having a laptop open in a research interview puts a barrier between you and the person you’re interviewing, and the typing can be quite distracting and intimidating for the interviewee. But typed notes are searchable, making for very useful reference when you’re synthesizing your notes. OneNote is a nice compromise. With a Tablet in slate mode, we remove the physical barrier of the laptop, and as long as you have the pen in a “Create Handwriting” mode, you can later go back and search your notes as if they were typed. (The handwriting recognition is pretty amazing.)
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OneNote for Interaction Designers, Part 2: Nuts and Bolts

In a prior post I explained how Cooper uses OneNote as a tool for Design Meetings. In this post I’m going to presume you’re a designer and eager to get a quick primer to the tool. Then I’ll share some best practices we’ve developed at Cooper.

A quick primer: Five tools

OneNote is a rich program, meant for a number of different scenarios. Here I’m only going to introduce the most basic concepts you need to get going on using OneNote as a quick design sketching tool.

1. The infinite canvas

You write on a canvas that is for all practical purposes, infinite. You can simply use the touch screen to slide to empty paper. That canvas can have a grid-paper like background, or it can be white. For most of the time I leave that grid on, to help keep lines straight and aesthetically pleasing.
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OneNote for Interaction Designers, Part 1

Whiteboards are cool, I guess. Fast, easy, familiar. But really, they’re nothing compared to digital sketching. At Cooper, we use digital sketching in almost all of our projects, and almost always in OneNote. In the next few posts I’ll share how we use it and why we think it’s awesome, see what you think. But first, to whet your appetite, some example drawings from Cooper designers straight out of the program.

These aren’t meant to be finished designs, of course, but examples of how communicative and illustrative designers can be with their earliest ideas using the tool, and doing so very quickly. Each of our designers has their particular way of working, but in general we share the same setup.

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Cooper wins Best in Category, Optimizing at IxDA’s Interaction Awards

Cooper is honored and delighted to receive the award for “Best in Category, Optimizing”. We are proud to be in the company of some of the most creative and innovative designers and grateful to the Interaction Awards Jury for their consideration.

Over a year ago, Cooper teamed up with Practice Fusion to design an app that revolved around how medical professionals think. Instead of asking them to learn a new way of organizing information, this EMR for iPad app leveraged their natural mental model of treating and working with people. This app significantly simplified and reduced the work of using an EMR by eliminating complex navigation and abstract categories. Now doctors can clearly view and capture details about their patients, without being chained behind a desktop.

Related Reading

Behind the scenes of Practice Fusion’s EMR for iPad app

To create our new iPad interface, which just released as a beta version to active providers, Practice Fusion partnered with the award-winning design firm Cooper. Cooper is renowned for its work across the design world, from startups to over a third of the Fortune 500, with its emphasis on creating simple and enjoyable user experiences.

Testing the iPad EMR 300x200

Our iPad User Experience Designer, Kramer Weydt (R), worked closely with Cooper’s Stefan Klocek (L) to make the Cooper design a reality. We met to chat about the process:

First of all, what exactly was your role on the iPad design?

Stefan Klocek: We are user experience designers, meaning we focus specifically on how users interact with the EMR. Instead of just designing from scratch, we first understand our user’s needs and we determine how we can fulfill those needs with the technical resources we have available.

Kramer Weydt: We’re not doctors, but we understand how people interact with devices and we learn from doctors what they need from this technology through research and interviews.

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sCoop: Week of April 30

Life at Cooper

Photo

Cooper recently brought back the Friday Afternoon Social Hour! Everyone enjoyed Suzy’s seriously strong sangria and tasty tapas, and the great conversations in this all around good time. If this sounds like how you’d like to wrap up the work week, join us! We are currently looking for a Business Development Manager.

See more of our life at Cooper on our Tumbler

Sketch 2.0 Released

sketch2

*Download the sample .Sketch file from my Dribbble account.

Sketch 2.0 is a new Mac application designed to be what Adobe Fireworks has struggled to become: the defacto standard for interface design. With a toolset targeting the professional user interface and icon designer, Sketch seems to be headed down the right path.

Sketch is not without its issues and may not be mature enough to replace Photoshop or Fireworks as of the version 1 release; however it’s an excellent start and well worth your time to checkout.

Several of us at Cooper are very excited by Sketch, so expect a more detailed review soon. In the meantime, checkout Sketch for yourself.

The Monoprice Graphics Tablet

*Video Monoprice Graphics Tablet line quality by Ray Frenden.

In the world of drawing tablets, there is Wacom and…umm…well…nobody else. That’s what I thought before I read Ray Frenden’s review of the inexpensive Monoprice graphic tablet “The Little Monoprice Graphics Tablet That Could.”

With a starting price of under $50 for a 10X6.25 inch graphic drawing tablet, the Monoprice tablet seems too good to be true. After reading Ray’s review and a quick twitter search of other Monoprice tablet users, I’ve become a believer and am seriously considering replacing my Wacom Bamboo tablet.

Checkout the Monoprice tablets for yourself; it just might save you a couple hundred bucks.

Stay up-to-date with your favorite web service feeds

Feeds

If you’re a Basecamp, Github, Dropmark, or Dribbble user, you might find Feeds interesting. Feeds lives in your menu bar monitoring your favorite web services, notifying you when new content is posted.

Dialoggs enters private beta

dialoggs

Dialoggs is a new web service that just entered it’s private beta phase. Dialoggs describes it’s self as a combination of Twitter, Facebook’s privacy controls, and Tumbler’s multimedia features.

Dialoggs allows you to follow people and send public and private messages just like in Twitter. What separates Dialoggs from Twitter, and what I’m most excited about, is Dialoggs ability to have long form conversations. Not having to worry about how many characters I have left? Priceless!

 

If your interested in learning more about Dialoggs, checkout “Introducing Dialoggs.”

Follow the creators on Twitter to win invite codes to Dialoggs: @drewwilson, @ammmir

Dialog.gs Website

 

Interacting with media across multiple devices

 

With the rise of mobile devices, more and more I need to be able to move files from my desktop to my mobile devices. Apple, Google, and Microsoft, along with several other third parties, have developed solutions but nothing that delivers a truly seamless user experience. Interaction designer Ishac Betran, in his article “Watch This Ingenious UI Idea For Dragging Files From Your Phone To Computer” details an elegant seamless drag-n-drop solution.

iPad Keyboard Prototype

 

Another interesting concept is the “iPad Keyboard Prototype” created by Daniel Chase Hooper. The video demonstrates a simple, intuitive way for simplifying text editing on the iPad. Instead of tap-and-hold to edit text, the user can swipe the cursor around the text block to quickly edit the text.

App pick of the week: Track 8

IPad ui

Track 8 brings the Metro experience to your iPad in a slick music player, allowing you to browse your music in an immersive visual experience.  

Checkout Track 8 for yourself.

 

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