Facebook’s head of product design, Julie Zhuo, doesn’t contain her opinions in a corporate silo. When the social application takes heat from critics who allege it’s placing advertisers’ needs over users’, she speaks out on her personal blog. When Facebook scrapped an image-focused redesign and people cried foul, Zhuo penned an impassioned argument that Facebook does “whatever is best for the people.”
I’ve recently questioned the motives of Facebook’s product design, especially when it comes to the news feed’s controls. On stage at Gigaom’s 2014 Roadmap design conference November 19th, I’ll be asking Zhuo about all of the above and more. Since she was Facebook’s first-ever intern in 2006, she has watched the product evolve dramatically and can provide insight into how the company’s design decisions contributed to its global growth.
Zhuo will be appearing on a session about awesome app design alongside Shalin Amin, creative director at Uber, and Mark Kawano, a former Apple evangelist and founder of storytelling app Storehouse. The trio will be sharing behind-the-scenes tales of the toughest design challenges they’ve faced.
Uber pioneered a brand new type of user behavior, and its app design played a key role. It set the precedent for the on-demand companies that followed — pink-mustachioed Lyft, delivery rival Postmates and the new wave of food startups like Sprig and SpoonRocket. Amin will discuss the process for engineering new consumer behavior.
Kawano, on the other hand, has shared loads of juicy Apple design secrets since leaving the organization to start his own company at the end of 2012. He can speak on building a design culture – it’s not about hiring the best designers, it’s about valuing design across the entire company. He’ll tell us what he learned at tech’s design mecca and how it impacted his process for building Storehouse.
This trio will take the stage alongside other great Roadmap speakers and design professionals, like Evan Williams from Medium, Mia Blume from Pinterest and Dantley Davis from Netflix. If you’re interested in tech and design, it’s not to be missed. Get your tickets here.
Disclosure: Storehouse was backed by True Ventures, which is also an investor in Gigaom.