Meta Refresh 2018

Meta Refresh 2018

The web in your pocket


Meta Refresh 2018 will cover four primary topics:

  1. User research and design -- how user research is carried out and translated into design (whether engineering or designing user interactions).
  2. Design systems -- how collaborations are being enabled between engineers and designers. Here, we are looking for case studies.
  3. Tooling for design systems -- share your experiences (and evaluations) of open source tools for design systems.
  4. Why the boundaries between UI and UX are not the way to proceed for design and designers.

Criteria to submit a conference proposal

You must be a practising web developer or designer, and must be able to show how your own work has advanced the state of the web in the past year. You are expected to present original work that your peers — this event’s audience — recognise as being notable enough to deserve a stage. If you are excited about someone’s work and believe it deserves wider recognition, we recommend you contact them and ask them to submit a proposal.

Guidelines for submission

Every proposal MUST be accompanied by:

  • A two minute preview video where the proposer gives an elevator pitch about the talk.
  • Detailed outline of the talk – either in the form of draft slides, mind map and/or textual description.
  • If you are proposing to speak on a topic where the code is not open-sourced yet, the editorial panel will consider your proposal only if the code is made open-source at least three weeks before the conference.

Without the above information, your proposal will not be considered for review.

If you are submitting a Workshop Proposal, you must clearly state:

  • Background knowledge that participants must possess in order to attend your workshop.
  • Details and links to software / packages which participants must install before coming to the workshop.
  • Laptop configuration.
  • Links to background reading material and GitHub repos.
  • Duration of the workshop.
  • Maximum number of participants who can attend your workshop.
  • Instructor’s past experience with conducting workshops.

There is only one speaker per session. Workshops can have more two or more instructors.

Entry is free for confirmed speakers.

If you are an outstation speaker, HasGeek will do its best to provide a grant that covers part of your travel and accommodation expenses in Bangalore, subject to budgetary constraints.


The 2018 edition is a multi-track event with the following session formats:

  1. Full length talks of 40 minutes
  2. Crisp talk of 15 minutes
  3. Workshops of 3-6 hours
  4. Off the Record sessions (OTR)

Important Dates

Deadline for submitting proposals: TBD
Conference date: 26-27 October, 2018


Meta Refresh will be held at the NIMHANS Convention Center, Bangalore


For more information about speaking proposals, tickets and sponsorships, write to [](mail or call +9107676332020

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Meta Refresh is an umbrella forum for conversations about different aspects of design and product including: UX and interaction design CMS, content management, publishing and content marketing Information architecture more

Dhruv Saxena


How clumsy engineering can lead to powerful research

Submitted Aug 23, 2018

In most of user research practiced today, designers build click-through prototypes to get quick user feedback, which saves the product team a lot of time and money. The practice is extremely useful, but only during the infancy of a product.

After a few iterations the team has learnt all it could from a prototype and needs to build the real product with real data and real interactions to learn more. Months of painstaking engineering goes into building this ‘real product’. When the product is finally out, the team realises that it was built on a shaky foundation of incomplete research and has to put in many more months of work fixing problems that could have been surfaced had the research been more sophisticated.

What if we could use a tiny portion of the engineering bandwidth to turn a prototype into real software? Could the final production software with clean scalable code benefit from another piece of clumsy experimental software that can go out into the real world and test design assumptions with minimal engineering effort? If the experimental software has real interactions and real data, could it actually facilitate more sophisticated research than a prototype?

In this talk, we answer all these questions using an ongoing project at Uncommon as a case study.


  • Introduction to case study (with a small video)
  • Introduction to the common process of user research
  • Difficulties in doing user research with just a prototype
  • Benefits of building dirty but real software for user research
  • How to build real software for user research
  • How to get a buy-in from engineering for building real software just for research
  • How to collaborate with engineering and get them accustomed to the make-and-break process of design
  • How to use real software in user studies
  • How to synthesise user studies and come up with actionable results for engineering
  • How to incorporate learnings from experimental software into production software

Speaker bio

Dhruv heads the design practice at Uncommon - a digital product design consultancy that has helped many of India’s and SE Asia’s unicorn startups - Go-Jek, Flipkart, Myntra and Swiggy to name a few, achieve rapid exponential growth through design.

At Uncommon, Dhruv helps clients use design as a foundational pillar alongside business and technology to build products that people actually want to use.

In a previous life, Dhruv’s work was concentrated on designing physi-digital interfaces, which he built through collaboration with designers and professors at the Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design (his alma-mater), MIT Media Lab and Stanford.


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Hosted by

Meta Refresh is an umbrella forum for conversations about different aspects of design and product including: UX and interaction design CMS, content management, publishing and content marketing Information architecture more