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Alvin Chan

How to better influence your team and feel more confident about your design choices.

Image from Razvan Vezeteu on Dribbble.

Like most new designers, when I first started to learn about UX, I thought it was all about prototypes and wireframes. In school, I would spend the majority of my time on sites looking for the hottest and latest UI. It wasn’t until I worked in team projects, got design critiques from my professors, and tackled my first project at my first job did I realize it was the complete opposite.

I spend a large part of my learning switching gears from learning hard skills to…

Cover Image from Odama on Dribbble

In my senior year of college, I remembered telling myself to live life to my fullest. Things weren’t going to be the same after college. Everyone’s moving to start their own careers. Absorb it all.

With a job lined up after college, I was extremely grateful I was able to spend genuine time with friends and family and just, celebrate! I still remember sitting during graduation laughing that I would be working as a full-time employee among an extremely smart group of designers.

And here I am right now, in this moment, writing this. I’ve successfully navigated into a career…

Cover Image from Oelhan on Dribbble.

Whenever I feel uninspired or feel like I’m having a meh day, I try to be grateful and appreciate of the good things in my life. Today, instead of practicing my gratitude in my personal life, I’d like to express my gratitude in my professional career as a product designer. Here are some things that bring me joy:

When my teammate says something positive about someone else.

When my team always assumes positive intent.

When someone gets to know me personally before working together.

When my co-worker adds a funny meme or image on a Figma file.

Not dwelling on…

Barriers that make people question their desire to switch into this field.

Cover Image from James Round on Dribbble.

Over the past few months, I’ve had a chance to mentor students transitioning into design. It’s no easy task for these students, and I learned a lot on how brave these people were to be willing to change their careers to better themselves, their career, and sometimes even their families (while being in the midst of a pandemic). When I was in college, I could barely stomach to guts to change majors or even decide on minor.

While any move into design may be daunting, career ‘transition-ers’ have it more challenging. They might come from a background that isn’t immediately…

Tips on applying rational thinking in design.

A hand throwing a pair of Kings cards on a poker table.
A hand throwing a pair of Kings cards on a poker table.
Image Source

A week ago, Reddit launched Second, a simple experimentation used to test rational thinking. The rules were simple:

  1. Each round you’ll be presented with three image. They can be anything ranging from country flags, actors/actresses, phrases, etc.

2. Users vote for the image they think would be the second most popular.

3. The earlier users vote, the more points they can win or lose and the higher the stakes.

What the queue is, how it works, and how to potentially improve it.

Disclaimer: Everything written in this article are based on my own assumptions and opinions. In no way are they affiliated with Top Shot or representative of all the testing, data, decisions and work needed to make Top Shot the way it is today. So in other words, this is for entertainment purposes only!

What is NBA Top Shot?

Started in October 2020, NBA Top Shot is an online community for trading virtual basketball cards. As a member, you are able to trade what are called moments, which can be ‘signature moves, jaw-dropping…

A man holding a blue ballon which covers his face.
A man holding a blue ballon which covers his face.
Image Source

In my sophomore year of college, when I told myself I wanted to get into user experience, I didn’t know what to expect. I was on the verge of switching majors, I wasn’t getting enough sleep and I needed an internship badly because my resume had more white than black on it.

All I knew was that I didn’t have to code, I would be paid for it and it was a field that sounded interesting, which was pretty rare considering I was constantly pressured by my parents to pursue a more sustainable and reputable career as a doctor.


This was written back in 2018 and was saved in my drafts…’s never too late, right?

Last month, I had a chance to do some leather making at the Chicago School of Shoemaking and Leather Arts.

Our instructor was Sara McIntosh, and she draws on over 35 years of experience in leather making. She gave us the option of making a pouch, phone case, or wallet as part of the three-hour workshop. I decided to choose a wallet, since I’ve been buying a new one every couple months. Why not make one myself that’ll last?

We began by picking the…

Applying design thinking to our six-month long internship in a goal to make universal education a reality.

Written by Alvin Chan and Nikkie Ella, 2017 UX Design and Research Interns.

1) Please introduce yourselves

Name: Alvin Chan

Age: 22

Educational Background: Cognitive Science with specialization in Human-Computer Interaction (Class of 2017).

Interests: Designing and creating experiences that create an emotional impact for people, content strategy, accessibility, virtual reality, project management.

— By: Alvin Chan —

This week, we decided to take continue talking about the idea of our food website. As college students ourselves, we often eat out too much and spend a lot of money. Even if we have some ingredients in our house, we never know what to cook. The basic idea we have is to create a website that allows a student to list all the ingredients in their kitchen, and will be given a possible list of recipes and dishes that they can make. We feel that this is a great idea for college students because…

Alvin Chan

Product Designer 🖊️ Writing is an outlet for me to learn new topics, share ideas and improve as a creative.

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