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Why I Go To MidwestUX

MidwestUX 2012 is fast approaching (May 31 to June 2 in Columbus, Ohio). And while I’ll be there to speak about negotiation, that’s not the only reason I’m heading to the Midwest.

I go to MidwestUX because it has the most dynamic conversations about corporate culture, and Experience Design’s role in cultivating corporate culture. I go to conferences for the conversations that come up with people I might’ve never met before. I know I’ll be around a group of people who do what I do and who are there to get better at what they do.

It’s the quality of Rackspace corporate culture that let me know it was the place for me to work. And, I know corporate culture is important to the founders of MidwestUX, because they give that topic even representation in the talks they select. They put together an event that teaches UX people how to see their work in a larger perspective – gathering leaders with cross-industry experience. I want to make the Experience Design team as valuable a part of Rackspace corporate culture and Fanatical Support as I can, so I choose to spend with people who are asking questions about how to do that where they work.

I know a couple of the other speakers, and look forward to talks like Chris Risdon’s “Mapping the Experience.” He’s a fellow Austinite, and I think his work would have a great impact at Rackspace. I expect to see a few new speakers this year, too. I’m especially excited about Richard Buchanan‘s keynote talk. He always opens people’s minds.

And, of course, I’m always looking for other UXers who would make a Fanatical Racker.

About the Author

This is a post written and contributed by Jay Morgan.

Jay is an Experience Designer at Rackspace, working in Austin, TX. Currently, Jay is redesigning cloud hosting web applications for individuals and enterprises, his UX experience spans user research, information architecture, iterative testing and prototyping and team management.

Jay has previously worked as UX Director at an Interactive Marketing agency, Senior IA at Target - Jay considers his work championing and building Target's Design Pattern Library to be his most significant accomplishment - and Interface Manager at He developed the UX practice in retail ecommerce companies, seizing every opportunity to advance the practice of UX.

Jay studied applied cognitive science, focusing on mental models, problem solving and judgment and decision-making. He is fascinated by our field's potential to earn a seat at the table by solving cultural, organizational and communication problems.

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