LAB Radio Episode 35 – What is User Experience (UX)? Featuring Vitalik Demin, Software Program Manager and Information Architect at Horizen (formerly ZenCash)

In this episode, Aaron Mangal explores the concept of User Experience (UX) with Vitalik Demin, Software Program Manager, and Information Architect at Horizen (formerly ZenCash).

Vitalik Demin headshot

Vitalik Demin, Software Program Manager, Information Architect at ZenCash

“My passion is to fix and improve processes and technologies that are broken and not intuitive to use. I see process end-to-end and drive inefficiencies out by re-engineering the flow, building technology solutions, and ensuring the user experience is impeccable.”

S9 Billboard fail

User Experience (UX) and design are separate (albeit greatly related) disciplines. The science of UX has not always been as obvious as it seems today and has shifted into such force that it has it’s own specialization and job role in today’s startups.

According to, a website on UX maintained by the Department of Health and Human Services:

User experience (UX) focuses on having a deep understanding of users, what they need, what they value, their abilities, and also their limitations.  It also takes into account the business goals and objectives of the group managing the project. UX best practices promote improving the quality of the user’s interaction with and perceptions of your product and any related services.

Peter Morville, veteran UX and information architect made a User Experience Honeycomb to visually explain the concept:

User Experience Honeycomb graphic

User Experience Honeycomb

We greatly enjoyed learning about this super important yet often overlooked construct not only within Cryptocurrency but the digital (web) experience as a whole.  We hope you enjoy learning more about the philosophy and principles behind User Experience (UX).

After listening to this episode you will learn:

  • How Vitalik first learned UX and developed his craft
  • The origin story of Vitalik discovering Horizen (formerly ZenCash) and how he decided to work for them (due diligence process)
  • What some great (and not so great) examples of UX are
  • What Horizen is and what they do
  • The connection between Horizen and IOHK
  • The difference between designers and User Experience professionals
  • Why brands should maintain control end-to-end for their marketing (see Samsung S9 phone ad example)
  • Best practices and other insights around approaching User Experience (UX)

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Further Reading and Resources

Vitalik Demin | Instagram | LinkedIn | Twitter

Vitalik’s Books on UX (free)

Horizen (formerly ZenCash) website


LAB Radio Episode 5 – Meet Rob Viglione, co-founder of Horizen (formerly ZenCash)


Vitalik breaks down how Apple could reduce the AirPlay process from 6 steps to 2 on his YouTube channel:

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