Annie Chun’s

Annie Chun’s wanted a consumer-focused Web site that encouraged user participation and developed a relationship with their customers. As part of a user experience team at Native Instinct, we designed an e-commerce site with over 100 recipes and Asian cooking tips. The challenge was to make the linking between recipes, the client’s product line and an external e-commerce engine seamless and intuitive from the customer’s point of view and easy for the client to maintain.

In addition to serving as lead Information Architect on the project, I also led the tech team implementing the site in Drupal. The result was a great-looking front end for customers with a customized Drupal content management experience for non-technical users who would be entering in new recipes and product information after the project once the site was live.

Salesforce Foundation

While at Native Instinct, The Foundation asked us to redesign their Web site to reflect the Foundation’s global status as a vehicle for social change. We built a 2,000+ page Drupal site and re-focused the site to support their mission, “A community of good people doing great things.”


  • Home page featuring dynamically updated information
  • Upgraded original Drupal installation with theme written from scratch
  • Migrated thousands of old posts to new design
  • Installed multiple modules to help with publishing workflow and maintenance of the site
  • Created training materials for content managers

Wells Fargo vSafe

Wells Fargo wanted to develop a new product that could provide their customers with a virtual safety deposit box–a place for them to store their most important digitized documents. For much of the project, I was a one-person user experience team responsible for concepts, initial look-and-feel and multiple prototype development, working with a large, cross-functional team.


  • Worked on site with the client as a virtual team member for nine months
  • Served as user experience team lead, information architect and prototyper
  • Personally created low-, medium- and high- resolution prototypes for multiple rounds of user validation, from concept through complex transactional flows
  • Worked closely with business analyst on comprehensive specs


My Role: Inventor, designer and developer

The original inspiration for Blue came from years of work in Web development, seeing how many of the tools for the design and production process, especially those for information architects, always came up short. In the mid-1990s, I worked with my co-workers at Ikonic to develop a tool called Bravo, which served as an early Web site development and production tool for use by IAs, writers, project managers, production engineers and clients. For several years, I used Bravo on virtually all of the projects I worked on, even my own sites.

In 2001, I became frustrated with the limitations of Bravo and decided to start from scratch with a tool that was much more flexible and easy to use. Blue is the realization of that plan. With proprietary syntax inspired in part by XML and XSLT, Blue allowed me to quickly create flexible templates for everything from pages to low-level widgets, and all types of content, including IA-specific information like on-screen annotations and interactive use cases. It also supported some of my theories of advanced content management and Web site quality assessment.

As the projects I have worked on changed, Blue evolved and in its most advanced versions, I used it to code highly customizable templates in HTML, Javascript, PHP and XML.

Home Depot

Home Depot | 2003 | Home page redesignIn July of 2003, I worked with a team at Carlson Marketing Group in San Francisco, helping one of the world’s leading retailers, Home Depot, redefine the user experience on their e-commerce sites. With ambitious goals and an aggressive timeline, I was part of a small but determined team that helped retool and relaunch the Home Depot U.S. e-commerce site three months later.


  • Worked with large team to rethink all aspects of the user experience in a large e-commerce site
  • Optimized product taxonomy in numerous categories to assist with searching and browsing products
  • Served as UI designer on Home Depot Canada’s first e-commerce site, working with colleagues in Toronto to bring dot-com site redesign to a bilingual market


Attingo pitch microsite | 1998

Attingo Pitch | 1998 | HomeIn the 1990s, I began my career in new media, including working on ITV (interactive television) and CD-ROM production. The “multimedia” industry, as it was called at the time, was transformed as the Internet gained in popularity and, by the late ’90s, the dot-com bubble was just getting going. The agency I worked for, Ikonic Interactive, was on the bleeding edge, as it were, and we were wooing every client with money to burn, and there were plenty.

One such company was called “Attingo,” a Web start-up with its eye on the greeting card industry–physical greeting cards you could order online and have mailed to you or directly to the recipient with a hand-written note (as I recall). Embedded above is the entire “sitelet” we created to pitch our services to the prospective client.

  • The resolution of the presentation is about 620 x 460 pixels. At that time, most people had monitors with 640 x 480 and used Netscape browsers so screen space was limited.
  • The home page features an early flash animation. Scrolling text was our “specialty.” I particularly like the copy once the animation finishes: “Brothers, Sisters, Cousins”–huh?
  • The code includes no style sheets, has “Navigator” javacript that no longer works and includes over 200 separate HTML pages. I only had to fix a couple of bugs to make it work again.
  • There’s a portfolio embedded in the presentation showing Ikonic’s showcase work. The screen shots are 300 x 200 pixels and show the level of sophistication of Web design at the time.
  • We didn’t get the account. Attingo did not survive the bust–their time had not come.