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008: There’s a Lot of Opportunity for Those Who Are Willing to Take Some Risks with Ben Callahan

User Defenders podcast
User Defenders podcast
008: There’s a Lot of Opportunity for Those Who Are Willing to Take Some Risks with Ben Callahan

User Defenders "Mr. Middleman" Ben Callahan

Ben Callahan inspires us to be passionate about the interfaces we design and put ourselves in the shoes of the people who are using them to do amazing things. He shares a really interesting parallel from Jazz music to the work we do. He reminds us to make every day count by first thinking about what’s truly important and impactful for that day. He also encourages us to not be afraid to make stuff and put it out there because we’ll only get better by trying.

Ben Callahan is the president of the insanely talented and nimble web design studio Sparkbox in beautiful Dayton, Ohio. Ben is unquestionably one of today’s foremost experts on Responsive Web Design and building responsibly. He’s an active blogger and TedX speaker who has been invited to speak at pretty much any notable web design conference that exists. He’s also a family man, a fellow coffee snob, and one of the nicest, down-to-earth guys I’ve met in this industry.

Ben’s Twitter
Ben’s Website
Ben’s Blog
Codepen Redesign
[VIDEO] Ben’s TedX Talk

[BOOK] On The Run (A Fugitive Life In An American City)

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Artwork by Cesar Lemus | Editing by Chris Combs | Music by Wyman Gentry

I fell in love with the idea of that intersection between the code that we write, and the people that use it. The interface that provides access for people to do amazing things. Embrace the editing process. To be successful in this industry, we have to be able to put ourselves in other peoples situations.

Curiosity. It’s not enough for me to see that something works, I need to know how and why. I have an unrelenting desire to ask a lot of questions.

People expect things to be tailored to them. In the future, individual preference will be filtered into the actual experience, not just the content of a site or application, but how it impacts the way an interface is actually built.

There’s a lot of opportunity out there for those who are willing to take some risks. Don’t be afraid to make stuff and put it out there. You only get better by trying. Without the possibility of failure, there’s no possibility for real success. You can’t just do the same old things. You have to push yourself to do something new. You have to try something that’s outside of your comfort zone. And you’ve gotta push yourself to be willing to try those things if you want to have real success. So, Try stuff, get out there, and put it out for the world to see and be ready to let your skin to get thick. It’ll be painful too, but it will make you better.