GMU Usabilathon Recap


GMU Usabilathon Recap

Last Saturday, MetroStar Systems opened its doors to George Mason University’s Human Factors and Applied Cognition students for a 9-hour Usabilathon, which challenged them to build visualization projects from social media data. We were honored to have the opportunity to host GMU’s incredibly talented students during #UsabilathonDC and observed great examples of how to make data products usable. To relive the excitement, below is our “social visualization” of the day, as narrated by tweets.


What’s on Today’s Menu



The Anticipation

I was warned upon arrival to keep the coffee flowing because “this group goes through coffee like none other.” Thanks for the tip, Clare.


Ok, take your seats, everyone. Dr Boehm-Davis Dean of the GMU College of Humanities and Social Sciences has arrived!

Team @zoomph working their magic on real-time social media analytics for #UsabilathonDC

You know it’s game time when MetroStar Systems CEO Ali Manouchehri takes the floor.


Let the Games Begin

Due to safety reasons, I was unable to hit “record” during the rush to the rooms… However, here’s the closest thing to a hack-a-thon launch.




MetroStar’s John Gianopoulo talks shop & tips.


Zoomph’s Lee Kohn saves the day and offers his assistance with user testing.


When the whiteboards are in play, you know that things are getting serious!



Is the Food Here Yet?

Quick Lunch, because coffee can only last us so long…


Grab your food and talk ideas with Zoomph.


Side note: yes, we know, our HQ is pretty sweet. Why not join us to get an insider’s view?



After speaking in code all day, it’s time to switch back to plain English for presentations (unless, of course, you brought your translator with you).



#ICYMI: Zoomph’s creative director @CroninTilt proudly rocked the red, white, and blue high tops throughout the whole event. Nicely done, sir.


We’re Judging You…

The judges kindly asked me to turn off Snapchat during the deliberation. (But don’t worry, we have other snaps for you to enjoy — check below).


Insider tip for future #UsabilathonDC presenters:


Who’s Taking Home the Gold?

The anticipation leading up to the announcement of the winners is almost unbearable!