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San Francisco

Product Manager and UX Designer specialized in building mobile products using location data. 


BEIJING | June 19-20

Cathrine Gunasekara

Shanghai | June 16 - 19

Cathrine Gunasekara

World Tour 2018/19

Cathrine Gunasekara

I've quit my job, put all our stuff in storage and set out to see the world.
The plan is to travel for about a year and come back a lot wiser than when we left, ready to tackle new challenges.

My 2015 Reading List

Cathrine Gunasekara

 Figuring out what books to read in 2015. 

Figuring out what books to read in 2015. 

The last few years I've been working my way through books about product management, user experience design, interaction design, product design, product marketing and business strategy. 
It started with a self development project born on New Years Eve 2011 (don't they all?) where I set up a reading list of the books I wanted to read in 2012 to start the journey towards my dream of becoming an Interaction Designer. I was a product marketing manager at the time, but found myself more and more interested in how the product was designed and the decisions made getting there, rather than marketing the finished product. (I thought then that interaction designer was the coolest thing to be, but later I've found that Product Manager is the perfect role for me because it lets me be involved in all phases of the product development and I can use my wide skillset.)

Since 2012 my reading list has just kept growing, you're obviously never done learning!


2015 Reading List – My New Year's Resolution

This afternoon, my husband who's a product designer,  laid out piles of books he had just ordered from Amazon on our dining table to figure out which books to go into his own reading list for 2015. I found some good ones there that I would like to add to my own list, so decided to take a moment to update and prioritize my reading list and this is what it looks like for 2015 - one book to read per month. Sounds like a New Year's resolution.... Who's with me?

  1. Microinteractions, Dan Saffer
  2. Jony Ive, Leander Kahney
  3. User Story Mapping, Jeff Patton
  4. User Stories Applied, Mike Cohn 
  5. Designing For The Digital Age, Kim Goodwin
  6. Crossing The Chasm, Geoffrey A. Moore
  7. The History And Future Of Mind-Expanding Technology
  8. Brand Bible, Debbie Millman
  9. Designing Interfaces, Jennifer Tidwell
  10. Designing Web Navigation, James Kalbach
  11. Effective UI, Jonathan Anderson, John McRee, Robb Wilson and the EffectiveUI Team
  12. Package Design Workbook, Steven DuPuis

Knowing myself, I'll probably skip some and add some, but at least I have a plan:)

Go the distance

Cathrine Gunasekara

When you first attack a problem, it seems really simple because you don’t understand it. Then, when you start to really understand it, you come up with these very complicated solutions because it’s really hairy. Most people stop there. But a few people keep burning the midnight oil, and finally understand the underlying principles of the problem and come up with an elegantly simple solution for it. But very few people go the distance to get there.
— Steve Jobs, 1984

Expedia iOS app sidemenu – Small tweaks to increase retention for travel booking apps

Cathrine Gunasekara

Most people don’t have the need for travel booking apps more than a few times per year. For that reason, retention is a metric travel companies are typically struggling with.

Retention is an important metric. And to retain a user, first step is to be the brand that I associate with travel and my go-to app for checking prices, getting inspired to go places, finding good deals etc. But if your app is not on my phone when I think about travel because I deleted it after last trip, that could be a lost opportunity. 

I took a look at different travel booking apps in the app store and it struck me how few of them were trying to increase my loyalty or be an app that I would open in between trips. But with just a few tweaks, the travel booking apps could easily be something I would open when I get triggered to think about travel and when I'm day dreaming about my next trip. 

Here's an example of some simple tweaks that could maybe increase the retention for Expedia's iOS app. I followed some of the lessons learned from reading Hooked by Nir Eyal.

(Best experience in full screen)