IEEE Computer Society, GBC/ACM and BostonCHI

7:00 PM, Thursday, January 19, 2012

Constant Contact, Reservoir Place, Waltham, MA

[Admission is free, but you must register at]

The Secret Lives of Links

Jared M. Spool, Founding Principal, User Interface Engineering

jaredspool Links are the molecular bonds of our web sites, holding all the pages together. They are the essence of a web site.

Yet, what do we really know about them? If you create great links, your users easily find everything they need on your site. If you do a poor job, your users will find your site impossible or frustrating.

We never discuss what truly makes a good link good. Until now. Jared will show you the latest thinking behind the art and science of making great links. Join him for this entertaining and amusing look at the secret lives of our site's links.

If you’ve ever seen Jared speak about usability, you know that he’s probably the most effective, knowledgeable communicator on the subject today. What you probably don’t know is that he has guided the research agenda and built User Interface Engineering into the largest research organization of its kind in the world. He’s been working in the field of usability and design since 1978, before the term "usability" was ever associated with computers. Jared spends his time working with the research teams at the company, helps clients understand how to solve their design problems, explains to reporters and industry analysts what the current state of design is all about, and is a top-rated speaker at more than 20 conferences every year. He is also the conference chair and keynote speaker at the annual User Interface Conference and manages to squeeze in a fair amount of writing time.

Constant Contact is part of Reservoir Place, which is nominally on Tracer Lane and at 1601 Trapelo Rd. This is just west of exit 28 of Route 128. Free Parking is available in front of the silver building. After turning off Trapelo Road, follow Tracer Lane to the right. Enter the building's main entrance, walk straight down the hall, and take the elevator to the 3rd floor. You can see the Reservoir Place building on a map here. Constant Contact requires us to provide a list of attendees in advance, so if you want to come, you need to register at, but admission is free.

We will be taking Jared to dinner at the Green Papaya after the talk at about 9pm.

Up-to-date information about this and other talks is available online at You can sign up to receive updated status information about this talk and informational emails about future talks at, our self-administered mailing list.

For more information contact Peter Mager (p.mager at

Updated: November 21, 2011.