Guest-Speaker Series #4 – J.C. Jubilo from Mophie

Guest-Speaker Series #4 – J.C. Jubilo from Mophie

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J.C. is a UX designer in Orange County and contracts with her clientele to create solid user experiences and strong visual designs for their websites and mobile apps. She founded the OC-Designers-Developers (OCDD) Meetup in Irvine in June, 2013, which now has over 300 members. In 2013 she won the UCLA Developer’s Contest (a.k.a “Hackathon”) for a currency converter app concept that her team presented.

She currently works for Mophie in Tustin, CA as a UI/UX designer and is currently working on constructing a UI/UX bootcamp for developers in her spare time. Some of her specialties include the following:

• User Experience Design • Information Architecture • Visual Design • Prototyping


J.C. Introduces Herself to Our Class of Fuzers

J.C. gave us great insight to our bootcamp on what UI/UX means to developers and end-consumers and how important good UI/UX is for profitable relationships.


UI/UX Defined

She defined UI (user interface) is the part of the product that faces the user when he looks at the site, and the UX (user experience) is how they feel when they look at the site.  An old saying that defined UI/UX fairly succinctly was, “UI is the saddle, the stirrups, and the reigns.  UX is the feeling you get being able to ride the horse, and rope your cattle.”

In short, the ENTIRE package is what makes good UX, whereas good UI is always a very important inner-element of that.


The UX & UI Relationship.  Illustration by Dan Saffer.
The UX & UI Relationship. Illustration by Dan Saffer.


It’s funny how our guest speakers will confirm what they say by overlapping each other’s philosophies and theory.  For instance, just two weeks ago, we had Marv Chan from Kelley Blue Book speak on Agile development and contrasted that with the traditional “waterfall method.”  Design is a vital part of development and therefore, so is UI/UX.  J.C. took us once again through the processes of waterfall and agile development in relation to UI/UX.


Design Processes

Waterfall (Traditional) – steps completed one at a time and in sequence

Agile (Continuous) – steps completed in conjunction simultaneously


Agile vs Waterfall Design Processes
Agile vs Waterfall Design Processes


J.C. also gave us a brief overview of the many various roles in design and development from the UI/UX perspective.


UX Design Roles

  • User Researchers focus on understanding user behaviors, needs and motivations through observation techniques, task analysis, and other feedback systems
  • Information Architects organize, structure, and label content in an effective and sustainable way.  Their goal is to assist users in finding information and complete tasks.
  • Visual Designers focus on the aesthetics of a site by strategically implementing images, colors, fonts, and other elements.  A successful visual design does not take away from the content on the page or its function.  Instead, it enhances it by engaging users and helping to build trust and interest in the brand
  • Usability Analysts gather, analyze, and documents user feedback and facilitate testing sessions.
  • Interaction Designers create engaging interfaces with well thought-out behaviors.  They understand how users and technology communicate with each other and anticipate how someone might interact with a given system, identify and fix problems early, and invent new ways of doing things.
  • UX Designers focus on having a deep understanding of users – what they need, what they value, their abilities, and also their limitations.  They will take into account the business goals and objective of the group managing the project.  UX best practices promote improving the quality of the user’s interaction with and perceptions of your product and any related services.


At a medium size company, here is what your Digital Production Team might look like:


Digital Production Team Table


On Demand and Salaries for UI/UX Designers in the U.S.

Querying “user experience” on returns 5,000 jobs in the U.S. alone in past 15 days.  Average salary for UI/UX designers is $85,000.


J.C. presents on UI/UX design in modern digital products.


Questions for J.C.


Where are some good information sources for beginner designers to network with others?

I recommend attending Apple’s Conference and the Android Conference; follow the “big players” and what they announce.  Also subscribe to TechCrunch, and follow designers on the social networking site, Dribbble.

How important is it for back-end developers to know design?

It’s really valuable to have the front-end guy also be interactive and help make decisions and design.  Knowing design is like knowing a second language, so when you know it, you will effectively break barriers down and workflow becomes more seamless and transparent, which benefits everyone on the production team.

What do you look for into working with a developer?

Good communication absolutely, and that he or she is a nice person.  I like them to be direct and not to take things personally.  If you’re a designer, and you come up with a solution, some people are going to comment.  It’s easy to take apart someone’s design.  What’s important is to not feel discouraged but to continue to make things better.

What applications do you like to use as a UI/UX designer?

There are many apps available for designers these days, but the one I like the most is Sketch, and it is starting to edge out Photoshop as the most used mock design tool for designers.


J.C. also gave us insight to a new UI/UX bootcamp that she is starting and gave our class great points on what it will offer.  We thoroughly enjoyed having J.C. come guest-speak to our cohort after hours and hope to have her again for the next one!

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