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Please note: this iteration of Underexposed has passed. Please see the main Underexposed page to learn about the most recent iteration.

Basic Logistics | Agenda | Lodging & Travel | Code of Conduct | Contact

Do algorithms rule our lives?

Technologists must strive to understand the needs, wants, and perceptions of real users as part of the process of building useful, usable products. As technology becomes ever-more intertwined with our daily lives, many users are surprised to find that their chat programs, online shoe stores, and even their “smart” lightbulbs are aggregating data on their actions and behavior.

Much of this data-gathering is well-intentioned. Many technology companies use data to perform user research, learn about people’s needs, and improve their products accordingly. But as instrumented systems become the norm and the value of data grows, we must also ask: how does this information-gathering impact our sense of privacy, security, and well-being? In an era of increasing data complexity, where information seems to sift across boundaries in unexpected ways – both through intentional action and unintentional breaches – what does it mean for a technology to respect its users?

Underexposed is a workshop that brings together designers, user-experience researchers, and technologists to have hard conversations at the intersection of human-centered design, ethics, and computing. This year the event will focus on the data and algorithms that are coming to permeate all aspects of our daily lives, such as:

  • Chatbots and learning chat clients
  • Predictive recommendations for music, bars, and blind dates
  • Location-based ad targeting
  • Financial scoring systems for employment and credit
  • Stream filters and filter bubbles
  • Genetic matching and medical diagnosis
  • Predictive policing and algorithmic sentencing

Well-intentioned innovations in these and other domains may have scary consequences. Designers and user researchers must play a critical role in empowering users to both understand and participate in the data-driven decisions that surround them.

At this workshop we will explore new trends, critique example solutions, and identify hard unsolved problems. We welcome designers, user-experience researchers, technologists, and program/product managers to share their experiences, designs, solutions, and challenges.

The workshop is open in that all are welcome to propose talks or apply to attend, but limited in that we can only accept a small number of participants. Stay tuned for more details on the proposal process, or email [email protected] to be notified when the call for proposals is open.

Basic Logistics

Date and Time

November 11, 2016
Followed by a happy hour


Paul-Lincke-Ufer 39-40
10999 Berlin, Germany

Thanks to IXDS for donating space for the event!


This is a rough outline of the day; more details to follow.

9:00 – Underexposed begins

We start get started over a light breakfast. Our morning sessions are designed to set a shared vocabulary and frame of reference as we share stories as a global community working on thorny issues such as security, privacy, and transparency in the era of algorithms.

12:15-1:15 – Lunch served on site

Our afternoon sessions continue the work from the morning, and explore new themes brought forth by presenters.

5:00 – Official program ends and happy hour begins

Lodging & Travel

More details to come.

Code of Conduct

We are committed to providing a harassment-free workshop experience for everyone.

Harassment includes but is not limited to offensive verbal comments related to gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, religion, technology choices, sexual images in public spaces, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention.

Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately. If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the workshop organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning or expelling the offender.

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact Scout or Ame, who will introduce themselves at the start of the workshop. We will work with you to take appropriate action, up to and including contacting venue security or local law enforcement if necessary. We value your attendance and want you to feel safe.

We expect participants to follow these rules at the workshop and associated social events.


Questions? Concerns? Contact us at [email protected].

Learn more about Underexposed 2015.