As our expert guest blogger, Giovanni Calabro has an uncanny knack for hitting upon hot issues in the interactive design world. He penned an eloquent story about how newspapers should create more user-centered experiences to gain readers. He was an early proponent of Google Buzz as a creative collaboration tool. When the news broke about Google’s potential TV set-top, Giovanni pleaded for Google to get premium partnerships. And just hours after he had his mitts on an iPad, Giovanni had pitched us his story that we’re posting today, reviewing two e-reader apps, iBooks vs. Kindle.
None of this will surprise you, though, when you take a look at Giovanni’s years of experience. He began working in the nascent industry during the 1990s, at a time when most of us hadn’t yet logged onto a place called the World Wide Web. But it was at WashingtonPost.com where Giovanni scored a huge coup for the interactive industry: Giovanni was able to get the print newsroom and the digital newsroom to work together at a time when most newspapers didn’t see the value of multimedia reporting, then apply those interactive chops to memorable coverage of the Iraq War, the 2004 election, and the D.C. sniper attack. Currently, as vice president of user experience at Siteworx, Giovanni heads user experience strategy, brand analysis, search engine optimization and social media strategy for an array of clients like NPR, USA Today, JPMorgan Chase and Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group.
But what Giovanni brings to the site is more than his innate sense of media, tech and design. Giovanni is the ultimate user advocate. A self-professed couch potato and gadget geek, Giovanni lives for enjoying his interactive experiences just as much as he loves creating them. Right this moment, he tells us, he’s toting his new iPad around, testing it as an on-the-go replacement for his laptop (“Darn thing is working well as a travel computer so far!” he reports). It’s that very personal, engaged viewpoint that makes other designers sit up and listen: When Gio posted a recent rant about how bad remote controls were ruining his History Channel-watching, Verizon contacted him outright and asked to see some concepts for rethinking their clunky remote. Now that’s what we like to call an interactive experience.
Enjoy Gio’s blog, named Design Pragmatist, but before you do, check in on a few of Siteworx’s recent projects.
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group
Siteworx worked with Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group to convey their luxury brand across multiple mobile devices from concept through implementation.
Through testing, full rearchitecture and redesign, Siteworx helped the American Diabetes Association understand who their audience is and how to better reach them through multiple channels.
U.S. News & World Report
Siteworx rearchitected and redesigned U.S. News & World Report to reflect their daily news breadth, while balancing their rankings, products and advertising needs.