The pièce de résistance. Hear some of the brightest minds in the industry speak about their craft, tell their story, and share their knowledge.

Thursday at The Waterfront Studio
  • 10am

  • Opening Address

  • 10:15am

    Robin Sloan
  • Robin Sloan

    Inventing Media

    Think of the formats we love and take for granted: books, two-hour movies, serial TV dramas, blogs… the list goes on and on. All of these formats had to be invented. As soon as you realize that, the media landscape gets really interesting, because you realize there's still more to invent. What will the great new formats look like? They’ll almost certainly live on the internet—but where, and how? Walk through the secret history of media invention, talk about what it means to work like a media inventor today, and learn why we should bother at all.

    About Robin

    Robin Sloan grew up near Detroit and now splits his time between San Francisco and the internet. He graduated from Michigan State with a degree in economics and, from 2002 to 2012, worked at Poynter, Current TV, and Twitter. His first novel, Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore, was published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in October.

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  • 11am

    Kirby Ferguson
  • Kirby Ferguson

    Everything is a Remix

    Creativity, like remixing, is the result of three basic techniques: copying, transforming and combining. By exploring our centuries of culture we can see how remixing—creating music from samples of existing music—is a good metaphor for all varieties of creativity. By discussing the myths around creativity and investigate how this view of creativity clashes with current laws and norms, we’ll find out how we are all really remixers.

    About Kirby

    Kirby Ferguson is a New York-based writer, filmmaker and speaker. He is the creator of the popular online video series, Everything is a Remix, and the upcoming free-and-open political series, This is Not a Conspiracy Theory. He has worked with, the Discovery Channel, Fight for the Future, and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and spoken at TED, South By Southwest and Google.

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  • 11:30am

  • Break

  • 12pm

    Rob Giampietro
  • Rob Giampietro

    The Art of Unbuilding

    When we invent, we disrupt. When we learn, we disentangle. When we scale, we disseminate. And while each of the former is intimately connected to act of building, each of the latter is equally connected to a different act, one we might call “unbuilding.” In building, we press forward and work with confidence and know-how. In unbuilding, we look back, make adjustments, find patterns, put things where they don’t belong, and take the time to reflect. Far from the opposite of building, unbuilding is building’s other half—an essential part of any effort to open up new possibilities on the web.

    About Rob

    Rob Giampietro is principal at Project Projects, a design studio in New York. As a writer, his most recent essay, “School Days,” was published in the Walker Art Center’s Graphic Design: Now in Production catalogue last year. As a teacher, Rob currently serves as a graduate thesis advisor at RISD. Other writing and teaching efforts are archived on his blog, Lined & Unlined. Rob was vice president of AIGA/NY in 2008.

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  • 12:45pm

    Mandy Brown
  • Mandy Brown

    The Cut

    To edit is to cut: to remove, to shear away, to crumple up on the floor. We edit so that the message can get through, so that what we say is clear. It’s a necessary skill no matter the medium in which we work. Whether editing words or film or designs, a good edit requires the right combination of timing, compassion, and ruthlessness. And just as it is a necessary skill in our own work, so it is in the way we consume the work of others: we edit what we build, and then we edit the world around us.

    About Mandy

    Mandy Brown is an editor and co-founder of A Book Apart and a former contributing editor for A List Apart. She previously served as Communications Director at Typekit. With her husband, Keith, she created Made by Hand, a short film series celebrating the people who make things by hand. At home in Brooklyn, she spends her days at Studiomates.

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  • 1:30pm

  • Lunch (served at St. George’s Market)

  • 3pm

    Jeff Veen
  • Jeff Veen

    Design for Disaster

    A while back, Jeff sat on a couch in the Typekit offices, staring out the window, and wondering if everything their company had been working towards was about to slip through their fingers. How that story ends is interesting (spoiler alert: they’re still going strong), and Jeff will share lessons on how they got through it and why they were ready for it. But beyond that, he’ll look at how you, your team, your clients, or your company can cultivate a culture of making amazing things—not just on the next project, but on everything you work on for the rest of your career.

    About Jeff

    Jeff is the VP of Products at Adobe, where he is currently focusing his attention on their new Creative Cloud service. He joined in late 2011 when the company acquired Typekit, which he co-founded and ran as CEO since September 2009. Jeff was also one of the founding partners at Adaptive Path, which was later acquired by Google.

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  • 3:30pm

    Tiffani Jones Brown
  • Tiffani Jones Brown

    True Story

    We are all storytellers. Everything we create—from opinionated tweets to designed products—says something about who we are. At their best, these stories help us relate and call us to great acts. At their worst, they reduce us to absolutes like “Top 10 ways to win” or “Here’s how to fail” when the truth is rarely so clear-cut. Let’s consider what telling truer stories means, examine how storytelling operates in our work, poke at our hero myths and excavate hidden narratives. Along the way, we’ll learn how to get more from every story we tell.

    About Tiffani

    Tiffani Jones Brown is a writer, editor and content person at Pinterest. Before, she was a content strategist at Facebook, co-runner of design agency Things That Are Brown, and getter of a master's degree in philosophy from the University of Chicago. She lives in San Francisco with a husband and two cats.

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  • 4:15pm

  • Break

  • 4:45pm

    Ethan Marcotte
  • Ethan Marcotte

    The Map Is Not The Territory

    When we create for the web, we participate in a kind of public art. We code, we design, we build for an audience, and our work feels successful when—if—it’s met with their delight. We shape digital experiences that provide a service, or that create joy, or that simply connect readers with words written half a world away. But in this session we?ll instead look at some ways in which our audience reshapes the way we think about our medium, and see where they might be leading us—and the web—next.

    About Ethan

    Ethan Marcotte is an independent designer based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His clients have included New York Magazine, the Sundance Film Festival, The Boston Globe, and the W3C. Ethan coined the term “responsive web design” and, if given the chance, will natter on excitedly about it—he even went so far as to write a book on the topic. He swears profusely on Twitter, watches entirely too many movies, and has an unhealthy fixation with animated GIFs.

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  • 5:30pm

  • Closing Address

  • 7pm

    21 Social
  • After Party

    at 21 Social

    After you’ve had the chance to get some dinner, come grab a well-earned pint and wind-down at our after-party. Hosted at 21 Social, one of Belfast’s best new nightclubs, we promise we’ll keep the music down low and the drinks flowing all night.

© 2012 Andy McMillan / Design by Kyle Meyer / Development by Riot / Icons by Tim Boelaars / Refund Policy