Presented By O'Reilly and Cloudera
Make Data Work
Feb 17–20, 2015 • San Jose, CA

Architecting Interfaces that Learn

Tye Rattenbury (Trifacta), Jeffrey Heer (Trifacta | University of Washington)
10:40am–11:20am Friday, 02/20/2015
Design & Interfaces
Location: LL21 B
Average rating: ****.
(4.50, 4 ratings)

In an era of rich data gathering, personalization, and predictive methods, we should have high expectations of our user interfaces. They should understand who we are, what we do, and what we’re working with. And they should use that context to make sure that our user experience is efficient and fluid—highlighting the issues that matter most, removing unnecessary friction from interactions, and paring away complexity unless it’s absolutely merited.

Modern application software development toolkits—think Rails or Backbone.js—offer little assistance in this regard. While reasonably strong at helping developers with models and views, they provide little scaffolding for building feedback-driven learners in controllers/presenters. In this talk, we describe a software philosophy that drives our intelligent interface designs at Trifacta. We focus on the flow of signals, data, and prediction throughout the architecture of an application and its interfaces, and emphasize the design disciplines that can connect this flow together and lead to increasingly intelligent interfaces over time. As a case study, we describe Trifacta’s approach to creating an intelligent interface, and ways that our design philosophy has influenced our implementation.

Photo of Tye Rattenbury

Tye Rattenbury


Tye Rattenbury is a lead Data Scientist at Trifacta. Tye holds a PhD in Computer Science from UC Berkeley. Prior to joining Trifacta, he was a Data Scientist at Facebook and the Director of Data Science Strategy at R/GA.

Photo of Jeffrey Heer

Jeffrey Heer

Trifacta | University of Washington

Jeff is Trifacta’s Chief Experience Officer and a Professor of Computer Science at the University of Washington, where he directs the Interactive Data Lab. Jeff’s passion is the design of novel user interfaces for exploring, managing and communicating data. The data visualization tools developed by his lab (D3.js, Protovis, Prefuse) are used by thousands of data enthusiasts around the world. In 2009, Jeff was named to MIT Technology Review’s list of “Top Innovators under 35″.