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Failing Fast: Get Your App Out of the Lab and into the Arena

Strategy and Business Models
Location: 2010 Level: Intermediate

As demand for innovative and custom software applications/solutions increases, so does the challenge for businesses to understand how an iterative development process should work, as well as how critical user testing and feedback is to the success and adoption of their product or service. Often businesses come to their internal development teams or external vendors with a budget and a deadline, but the definition of the features and functionality is driven by the “domain expert” without a plan to get users involved in a structured way and loop user feedback into the software for the next steps or phase. All they know is that they need their business and technical requirements met within their budget and deadline. This panel will discuss common pitfalls, share stories and provide strategies and recommendations that will drive user adoption and maximize the success of their next-generation applications.

Photo of Tony Hillerson

Tony Hillerson

Tack Mobile

Tony Hillerson is a Software Architect for EffectiveUI. He graduated from Ambassador University with a BA in MIS. On any given day he may be working with Flex, Java, Rails, Maven, Ant, Ruby, or shell scripts. Tony has contributed to and developed on many community projects, such as RubyAMF. He’s written whitepapers, including one on Flex and Live Cycle Data Services, and is currently co-authoring a book on Flex and Rails. This year Tony has spoken at 360|Flex and Adobe MAX, as well as local user groups.

Tony is interested in all levels of usability and experience design, from the database to the server to the glass.

In his free time Tony enjoys playing the bass, playing World of Warcraft, making electronic music, making beer, learning Latin, and studying philosophy. Tony lives outside Denver, CO with his wife and son Titus.

Alan Lewis


Alan is the product manager and creator of eBay Desktop. He has worked at eBay for four years as a product manager, technical evangelist, and technical writer. Alan is a regular on the conference circuit, and speaks frequently about rich desktop applications and web services.

Randy Rieland

Discovery Channel

Randy Rieland has been with Discovery.com since it was created by Discovery Communications in May, 1995. Discovery.com includes the websites for all of the Discovery Communications networks, including Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Travel Channel and Discovery Health, plus the company’s various digital networks, including Discovery Kids, Science and Discovery Civilization. The website, which builds almost all of its network-related content in-house, typically generates about 3 million page views a day, with a daily average of more than 300,000 visitors. Prior to moving to Discovery in 1995, he had been a print journalist for almost 25 years, serving as senior editor for The Washingtonian Magazine and editor of Pittsburgh Magazine. Early in his career he was a reporter and columnist for the Baltimore Sun and the Pittsburgh Press.

Ryan Stewart

Adobe Systems

RIA Evangelist for Adobe

Scott Green

Google Inc.

Scott Green leads Google’s Boulder, Colo., engineering office. Google acquired @Last Software (SketchUp) in March of 2006. At that time, Scott was the VP of engineering. Scott joined the SketchUp team in October of 2003. Prior to joining Google, Scott was the director of technical operations at ReturnPath. Earlier, he was the director of engineering at E-mail Publishing / MessageMedia, which was purchased by DoubleClick. Scott graduated from Iowa State University in 1982 with
a BS in mechanical engineering.