October 2023 Updates

October 2023 Updates
Photo by Nikhita Singhal on Unsplash

Take a breather.

A lot is happening in the world. While we’re not going to discuss socio-political issues and outline how things in the world are connected to each of us, along with our place and standing in society, it is overwhelming to understand the scope and magnitude of events that are taking place without jumping into a systems design exercise or consulting a map or an array of data visualizations to understand the impact and implications. Understanding the context of things is an ever-constant skill for a designer, not to say expected human skill. 

Meanwhile, let’s take some time to run through what has happened this past month with DIA and what’s coming up next month. 

#1: Read Experience Mapping with DIA!

We’ve started reading Mapping Experiences 2nd Ed. by Jim Kalbach. It’s a weekly endeavor, reading just one chapter a week. At this pace, we’ll get through most of the book by mid-December. As we alluded to data visualizations and maps earlier, you can tell that experience mapping has more direct applications in people’s work and life and even beyond. For instance, what are alignment diagrams and how have they been used to show the value offering that organizations create for their customers? 

We’ve had some good discussions on how certain aspects apply to each person’s current employment. If you miss a session or want to follow along on your own, we can share the PDF.

  • Book: Mapping Experiences, 2nd Ed by Jim Kalbach
  • Date time: Every Thursdays at 4pm Pacific / 7pm Eastern
  • Venue: Google Meet
  • Host: Julia DeBari
Read Together Book Club - Book: Mapping Experiences · Luma
Read Together Book Club - Book: Mapping Experiences

#2: Be a mentor with DIA

We’ve started preparing for the 2024 cohort of the apprentice program. The compact calendar has been set up, mapping when applications will be open for apprentices (December) to when orientation will be taking place (March). 

To keep true to our dedication, we are recruiting mentors for next year's apprentice program. We’re currently looking for people with 5+ years experience in UX in any role capacity to join DIA Design Guild as a volunteer mentor. Mentors spend about 30-minutes to 1-hour a week with apprentices. While we’re not instructors teaching the mechanics of UX, we are giving guidance, advice, and sharing our real-world experiences.

If you or someone you know finds this a worthy mission, consider being a mentor with DIA!

Be a mentor with DIA
How we mentor has a lot to do with our UX philosophy: User experience is a mindset, a process, and an approach to everyday life.

Local and community announcements:

DIA Design Guild hosts our own local events in the Los Angeles area as well as supports a number of communities in hosting and producing events. Here are a few we’re fond of:

#4: World Information Architecture Café

Over 60 people joined us at the last World IA Café event a few weeks ago, “Integrating Accessibility into Product Making for More Inclusive Products”, with ​Nandita Gupta. Check out past event recordings (Vimeo). 

Meanwhile, there are two events coming up in November: 

See the full calendar: https://lu.ma/worldiaday

World Information Architecture Café · Luma
View and subscribe to events from World Information Architecture Café on Luma. Events hosted by World Information Architecture Association.

#5: Taxonomy Talk, Nov 13

It’s been half a year since the first event and it’ll most likely be the last one for the year:

See the full calendar: https://lu.ma/TaxonomyTalk

Taxonomy Talk Events · Luma
View and subscribe to events from Taxonomy Talk Events on Luma. Events hosted by Taxonomy Talk, a Discord community open to anyone and everyone interested in taxonomy and taxonomy-adjacent practices.

#6: Building a Personal Knowledge Garden, Nov 28 - Dec 19

If you...

  • … have trouble managing, organizing, and taking notes. 
  • … seek ways to manage information in your life. 
  • … are looking for ways to remember what you’ve read or watched better. 

There’s a workshop for that! 

Information architects and authors Jorge Arango and Karl Fast have been developing a new workshop on digital note-taking. This is a 4-week workshop series with live sessions every Tuesday from Nov 28 through Dec 19, a community, and practical takeaways for life and work at the same time. This is an example of taking information architecture and applying its principles to the personal, individual level. 

Details and register early with a 20% off registration with code “PKGEARLY” by Oct 30 at: https://store.jarango.com/workshop-build-a-pkg

#7: Join us for a DIA Community Hangout Happy Hour

We host an open virtual happy hour hangout every month for anyone who wants to talk about what it’s like working at a nonprofit, startup, or enterprise company… or just come hang out and meet new friends!

Wednesday, November 15, 4pm Pacific on Google Meet

Register at https://lu.ma/sgvux-hangout

DIA Community Hangout · Luma
Previously known as the SGVUX Happy Hour, we are now resetting this as the monthly community hangout for the DIA community. Hosted on Google Meet. Join us virtually to chat about you, what you…


Whether to set up an apprentice program or talk about a new project or consulting, contact DIA Design Guild to get started.

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