christina.tran@ac4d.com

Alumni

Christina Tran

Christina Tran is a designer who has experienced life as a journalist, photographer, writer, and teacher. She is full of big questions, wanderlust, and peanut butter cravings. She aims to delight, inspire, and make a positive impact through her life and work.

Next up for me is a personal shift in thinking. Instead of thinking of my skills as a designer in terms of end product, I can start to offer my design thinking as a valuable asset in today’s world. Next up for me is a personal commitment. Instead of despairing about the state of our society, instead of giving up on our ability to make change within larger systems, and instead of waiting around for someone else to create a cause that I can fall behind, I will forge ahead into unknown territories of myself as designer as force of change. Next up for me is a year of thinking and working and designing and learning and exploring and pushing and connecting and growing. I surely hope that that year happens within Austin Center for Design’s inaugural class.

Recent blog posts

A reflection on Closure

I’ve gotten a reputation for redesigning AC4D via blog posts. It’s a testament to the school’s openness and our relationship to the school as inaugural class that I’ve been able to channel my critical reflections into something proactive and creative. And I’ve realized that everything that the school has put forth this first year has…

Marketing 101 from @getmetacos

So whut had happen wuz: Hour School was like, “Yo Scott, whut joo know bout marketing?” And Scott was all like, “Bring it.” And lemme tell ya, dat boy Scott dropped some dope wisdom on us. If you want some framing and language and context and understanding to enhance your nuts and bolts and excel…

Healthcare marketing AKA games AKA interaction design

When I started writing this post, it was about marketing trends in healthcare. Rereading the draft, I realized they were actually gaming trends, and that they apply to interaction design in general. But those are all just surface key words. The reason these ideas resonated with me is because of the opportunities they open up…

Why now is the time to be in #IxD and #SocEnt

We are interaction designers. We are social entrepreneurs. We want to work toward social change. We want to make an impact. And we want our lives to have meaning. The moment is more than ripe. The possibilities are breathtaking if you think about where we are now as… As designers and the general public start…

Theory of Social Entrepreneurship

AC4D is a different kind of school. We quickly realized on day 1 of student orientation that we were all here to work toward social impact. There weren’t going to be endless discussions about whether or not we should be “doing good” because it was pre-defined and a given in all of us as AC4D…

Business Model Generation

Meet my first business model canvas. Isn’t she cute? I was spurred on by our IDSE 401 discussions about income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements—and the ‘oh snap!’ realization that we haven’t solidified our revenue streams. I’ve been using Alexander Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur’s Business Model Generation book (recommended by Justin Petro during…

Thoughts on studio learning

The last week of our Q3 studio class was much more informal than previous weeks. It was open work time as we prepared for our final presentations with no structured check-in’s with Justin, though everyone ended up chatting with him throughout the day. Because of those small changes, I realized a few things about the…

Reflections from Q3

It’s a shame we didn’t do POW reflection videos the last week of Q3, because a lot of things clicked, and I learned a lot during that last week. What you get is a long thoughtful blogpost instead. Design Research is integral to the Design Process In my last post, I wrote about our cycles…

The evolution of Nudge

Nudge Presentation & Product Demo on Slideshare View more presentations from sodelightful. Nudge is a communication service to connect case managers and families experiencing homelessness in-between face-to-face meetings. We believe that strategically increasing the amount of low-key communication will enable case managers to serve clients better, enable clients to reach out for help, save time…

Design research themed links of the week

I’ve come across some cool Design Research stuff in my web-surfing of late. How-to: cheap POV video for mobile phone studies: By Kevin Wong at Artefact Doing international field research…successfully! A 4 part series by Masuma Henry at Artefact “Well, we’ve done all this research, now what?” Slides from a presentation by Steve Portigal of Portigal…

On-the-Fly Programming Lessons

This is what programming looks like. I didn’t expect a lesson tonight, but it sort of just happened in the course of our project-planning conversation. As context, I know HTML/CSS. I tried learning PHP online last year but didn’t get very far. I tried to learn Flash last summer from a book but only got…

Reflection Time

Does anyone watch our “Personal Growth Videos”? Our “Peaks of the Week”? Our reflection videos? The idea behind the videos is that learning requires reflection. This week, Ruby tried to redesign the format of the videos, and ask new questions because the videos were feeling staid. You can’t force reflection, but it’s an interesting interaction…

Co-Design Resources

“Design with” is definitely newer, and therefore less documented than “Design for” (within the already hard to talk about messy design process). But there are some trailheads on the internets. Design specific Article written by Carl di Salvo about Public Design Workshop at the Georgia Institute of Technology called growbot workshops. They presented technology to local…

Getting back on your feet again

This is not just a story about little ducklings. This is not just a test of your empathy and heartstrings—or of your sense of humor. This is a story about how people can lose their way, and how they can find it again. After doing a lot of research, especially when you’re in synthesis mode,…

Design Research Toolkit

She carries this black bag with her at all times. Day in and day out, everywhere she goes. But what does it hold? School books and art supplies? Secrets and lady things? Blueprints and wireframes? A change of clothes and a wig for quick getaways? Do not be fooled! One unassuming bag can contain a…

More from Christina Tran...