I split my time between personal projects and my day job. As Williams Carlos Williams describes “It is not two jobs at all...one rests the man when the other fatigues him.” I spend my days observing the world, noticing moments of frustration and asking Why? What if? then bringing those ideas to life. I'm interested in overlooked everyday things, bottom-up approaches, and designing tools and systems they way you think they should work.
I enjoy mentoring designers and guest crit at Parsons and Columbia GSAPP. If you like what you see here, let's chat! You can reach me on Instagram (where I post the most) and Twitter at @nsylianteng. You can also email me at [email protected].
To Park or Not to Park?
Rethinking the parking sign
A guerrilla project to redesign the confusing parking sign in collaboration with drivers, city officials, and the colorblind community. Created kits, maps, templates, and now a parking sign generator. Piloted in Los Angeles, New Haven, Boston, and Brisbane. Studies showed a 60% increase in compliance.
Designing for the people behind the data
An early stage startup building a safety wearable for factory workers. As the first product designer, I transformed the company's approach to product design into one that was more human, iterative, collaborative, and strategic. Resulted in a 60% total increase in worker engagement and improvement.
Bringing neighbors back to neighborhoods
At Sidewalk Labs, I led design for an app that increased interactions among neighbors. Worked closely with engineers and city operations to scope, prototype, and test the tool with families in downtown Chicago. Read about it on the Sidewalk blog.
The Story of the ZIP Code
A History of Things zine
A hybrid physical/digital zine about the little known history of the ZIP Code. The History of Things looks back at when old ideas were new, the challenges they faced, and how they evolved to become everyday things. These stories of invention, iteration, and paradigm shifts will make you look differently at the world -- questioning what is, what should be, and giving you ideas for how to push your own ideas forward.