14 August 2013

Wow. It’s been more than two years since I wrote the “about” page, and such a lot has changed! This blog / site is now about my pursuit of my PhD in design research at Northumbria University, and about my experience of living in Newcastle upon Tyne.

15 May 2011

This blog is about my exploration of the possibility of entering a PhD program in the UK, including what I might research and where.

I’m a information technology professional with almost 35 years of experience. I specialize in human-computer interaction (HCI), providing services in the areas of user research, interaction design, and usability assessment of software and web sites. I run a solo practice called Luminanze, and I’ve also worked in a very large company and a very small company. I have two master’s degrees — mathematics (N.C. State) and human development (Maryland) — and I have often said that if I had discovered HCI before I started working full time I would have stayed in school and gotten a PhD in experimental psychology back then. Now that I no longer need to work full time I feel free to explore the possibilities for finally doing a PhD.

I have also long wanted to spend some time in the UK, possibly living there, and doing a PhD there strikes me as a good way to combine these goals. Besides, being a student is the easiest way to get the UK government to give me a visa. (NOTE TO UK GOVERNMENT: This does NOT mean that I’d be using my student status as an excuse to come to the UK and party. I am a mature professional who takes her work very seriously, and I will take my studies equally seriously.)

I’m looking to start this program in the autumn of 2012. That’s why I call this blog “Leisurely” (instead of “Desperately” as in the movie :), because (a) I don’t want to rush into anything and (b) I’ve lived in my house for 26 years and I have a crapload of stuff to do before I can get it move-outable or rentable.


  1. So I am starting this program in the autumn of 2012. I created this page almost two years ago, and things have progressed greatly since then. My activities were anything BUT leisurely during the past few months, but things have calmed down a lot since I’ve arrived, and life is much more bearable. I still have a few things to finish up at home and a few things to do to finish getting settled in, but at this point my life focuses on my PhD work. Which is as it should be.

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