In September 2003, prior to beginning my current job at PeopleSoft, I built a Flash-based digital portfolio slideshow to communicate my interests and skills and introduce a sampling of my academic and professional project work from recent years. (A Flash Player plugin is required for viewing.)
Additional design work and links to publications are provided below.
Interaction Design and Prototyping
Interaction design and Excel-based rapid page prototyping.
In support of development teams for three applications within PeopleSoft's
Supplier Relationship Management product suite (Purchasing, Contract
Management, and Strategic Sourcing), I have created maps to visualize
page flows and interactions, and conceptualize page designs. Much
of my recent prototyping has been done using an Excel-based method
I have helped to develop within the company.
The SF Muni Map Project
A SIMS Final Masters Project by Maggie Law and Kaichi Sung; 1st prize winner of the Dr. James R. Chen Award.
Increasing numbers of public transit riders are using computers to
access information about buses, subways, and other modes of mass transportation.
Today, transit systems worldwide have online counterparts to their
paper map alternatives, many borrowing common visualization and presentation
techniques from popular mapping websites. The result: a spectrum of
approaches to the seemingly simple problem of getting from point A
to point B. Many fall short of tapping the full potential of the online
environment. This project compares a variety of public transit sites
and explores techniques for solving a set of fairly standard mapping
problems. We then apply the more usable approaches to a web- and kiosk-based
prototype designed for the San Francisco Municipal Railway (Muni)
system. In doing so, we hope to offer a user-centric model for use
by transit systems everywhere.
Full-time students today expend unnecessary effort hunting down course-related
information (assigned readings and deliverables, lecture aids, required text information,
related online references, classroom locations, instructor contact info, etc.)
from disparate sources. Bits and pieces of information might be scattered throughout
separate course websites or paper-based syllabi, distributed at the beginning
of the school term. The Digital Syllabus provides a single, web-based interface
for students to display and form custom queries against their own course plans.
Instructors (or assistants whom they designate) benefit from the guidance of standardized
wizards for crafting a course syllabus, maintaining it throughout the term, and
comparing important milestones with other instructors' courses.
"New Calendar" Project.
I was asked to build a prototype for an internal web site that would bridge all
functional groups involved with product internationalization and localization
(sales and development). The general look and feel of the site was to be consistent
with Documentum's public web site at the time. The prototype would contain all
new content, and a taxonomy re-design to suit its new purpose. The project was
tweaking, and some information architecting. I constructed user scenarios, diagrammed
in Visio, to validate my assumptions and collect suggestions from target users.
Web Site Design and Development Projects
Team intranet site design and development.
I designed and built an internal web site to track and promote team
work progress, explain and advocate User Experience work, and introduce
each member of the Supply Chain Management User Experience team to
the various organizations we support. My charter was to create a site
that would be easily maintained by 8+ people of varying technical
The CIO Collective
Website development and maintenance services and support since 1999.
The CIO Collective is a non-profit association of senior IT executives providing
strategic guidance to emerging businesses, technology audits and assessment, management
coaching and mentoring, and a variety of other consultative interventions. I created
the public face of the Collective as a simple brochure web site to answer frequently
asked questions, publicize the member roster, explain the mission, and provide
news and updates. I also developed a members-only community site in which the
85+ associates may seek and share information online, or access a variety of self-service
tools: a member directory, a document archive, service request forms, a message
board, and a newsletter archive.
Websites and business process visualization tools (1999-2002).
KMERA Corporation was a small services start-up with a focus on knowledge management
and business continuity. In addition to Staff Consultant duties, I lent my services
to build websites for public promotion, internal communication, and client team
Pronoun Usage in UI Conversations
Working title for forthcoming article for boxesandarrows.com.
I am currently writing an article detailing appropriate uses of first- and second-person pronouns ("my" vs. "your", etc.) in web-based service sites and web applications.
Personal Knowledge Management
A compendium article commissioned by the Information Work Productivity Council, 10/2003.
Personal Knowledge Management shares the best intentions of Knowledge Management
principles, but applies the lessons of KM's shortcomings. KM's inflexible, top-down
strategy poses too many obstacles, and all too often undermines the successes
of expensive, large-scale initiatives. PKM's more flexible and personalized bottom-up
approach focuses on the individual knowledge worker, not the business enterprise
as a whole, to achieve valuable personal benefits and a competitive business edge.
The KM Conundrum: History Lessons Point to a Brighter Future for Knowledge Management
A white paper commissioned by KMERA Corporation, 08/2001.
In a knowledge-based economy, an organization’s success or failure is directly
tied to its ability to manage its collective intellectual assets effectively.
From the very first industry analysis reports (circa 1997) trumpeting this announcement,
the panicked race to implement the smartest, fastest and cheapest means to accomplish
this goal produced a rush of new technologies, many actually pre-existing technologies
with a new spin. The hype and its accompanying pattern of disappointments resulted
in a legacy of failure to deliver on the promise of knowledge management. In this
paper, I drew conclusions about why KM had so consistently failed to live up to
its potential, and I proposed new approaches based on simple paradigm shifts and
informative history lessons.
Academic Papers and Presentations
ECMS: An Analysis of the Collections Tracking System at the Bancroft Library
An academic paper written by Maggie Law, Behrang Mohit and Leah Zagreus for InfoSys 208 (Spring 2002).
A thorough analysis of an internal collections tracking system currently in use at the Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley's primary special collections library. Remaining sensitive to historical and practical context, this report examines the existing system, proposes several alternatives, and makes a recommendation for a solution based upon several months of interviews and research. Due to sensitive client information, this report is available by request only.
A Gateway to the Unknown? A Usability Study of the UC Berkeley Library Home Page
An academic paper written by Diane Ghorbani, Maggie Law and Leticia Valdez for InfoSys 214 (Spring 2002).
In this report we maintain as givens a) that a university library is a service organization, and b) that the focus of its web site should be squarely on information and service delivery. We offer a detailed usability analysis of the UC Berkeley Library website home page, both to determine whether it is realizing its full potential in service to library patrons, and to suggest improvements. Due to sensitive client information contained in this report, it is available by request only.
Exploratory Data Analysis: School Effectiveness in Inner London Schools
An academic paper written by Maggie Law and Vivien Petras for InfoSys 247 (Spring 2002).
Starting with a dataset collected by the Inner London Education Authority (ILEA),
representing 140 secondary schools over the 3-year period of 1985-1987 and consisting
of 5 nominal, 1 ordinal and 3 interval data types, this paper demonstrates how
visualization tools ParallAX (which employs parallel axis coordinate mapping)
and Inxight Eureka were used to analyze hypotheses about the data.
Visualization in Conversations
An academic presentation by Maggie Law and Vivien Petras for InfoSys 247 (Spring 2002).
Seminar discussion slides presenting experimental techniques -- including related
technological and social structures -- used for visualizing conversations. Specific
focus given to Comic Chat (a Microsoft product no longer in development, but still
quite widely used), Chat Circles (an experimental tool created at the MIT Media
Lab) and former SIMS professor Warren Sack's Conversation Map (first developed