About

Front-End Development: I’m a software engineer at Etsy and was previously the technical lead for Kabinet, a site for sharing personal care product recommendations. My personal projects include Pick-a-Color (a jQuery color picker for Twitter Bootstrap), SimpleSelect (a lightweight library for hierarchical DOM element selection), and We Still Feel Fine (a visualization of feelings from the Twitter Streaming API).

Product Strategy & User Experience: I was the first product manager at Outside.in, a hyperlocal news aggregator that was acquired by AOL in 2011 and merged into Patch, a network of local news sites. I led user engagement initiatives at Patch until 2012.

Hobbies: silkscreening, knitting, crochet, woodworking, vegan baking, figure skating, pilates, and picking up new crafts

This site: This blog/portfolio (blogfolio?) documents my work, side projects, and sundry interests. I blogged a ton on a site I called kenspeckle¬†(it means “conspicuous” in Scottish)¬†between September 2005 and September 2008. I’ve imported most of my old posts to this blog for posterity.

Find Me


Projects

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We Still Feel Fine

February 2014

An update to the 2005 project “We Feel Fine” by Jonathan Harris and Sev Kamvar. Uses the Twitter Streaming API, Node.js, and d3.js.

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Ease In

July 2013

Fade in DOM elements hierarchically with CSS transitions and 393 bytes of JavaScript. Possibly the world’s tiniest JavaScript plugin.

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CSS Specify Me

June 2013

A simple CSS specificity calculator to help you learn how specificity works.

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7 Minute Fit

June 2013

An iOS app that helps you get in shape fast by guiding you through a 7-minute high-intensity circuit training workout.

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SimpleSelect

March 2013

A lightweight, cross-browser compatible JavaScript library for hierarchical DOM element selection without a framework.

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Lauren Sperber Dot Com

February 2013

A simple, responsive WordPress theme for my personal site that showcases projects separately from blog posts. Uses Twitter Bootstrap and Font Awesome icons.

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Pick-a-Color

February 2013

Pick-a-Color is an easy-to-use jQuery color picker for Twitter Bootstrap.

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Patch Beta

November 2011

A revision of the Patch homepage designed to promote serendipitous content discovery. Based on extensive usability testing and focus groups.

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Patch Events Redesign

July 2011

A usability testing-driven revamp of Patch’s events section designed to help users find and share events more effectively.

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Blog

Pick-a-Color: now with 10,000%* more colors!

March 5th, 2013 in internet, technology, useful

Version 1.1.0 of Pick-a-Color is now available, featuring a new “advanced” tab that allows users to modify hue, lightness, and saturation to create any color their hearts desire. Plus: some modifications suggested by my friend Alex Cox. You can check out the documentation, read my original post about Pick-a-Color or look over the source code […]

RWW Real-Time Web Summit

June 14th, 2010 in internet, technology

On Friday I went to ReadWriteWeb‘s Real-Time Web Summit, repping outside.in and generally looking to find out what all the unconference craze was about and meet some nice fellow NYC geeks. I had a pretty great time (much better than I expected after this rather patronizing promo post for the event), so I thought I’d […]

semantic web documentary

June 10th, 2010 in internet, technology

Here’s a great compilation of interviews on the semantic web put together by one Kate Ray: Fave Quotes Clay Shirky: If I was going to start a news business tomorrow, I would start a news business designed to produce not one new bit of news, but instead to aggregate news for individuals in ways that […]

misinformation effect

June 9th, 2010 in education, science

Turns out I’m not alone in memory-is-an-illusion kick. Just the day after I posted that, Kottke gave a nice shout-out to this funny new blog called You Are Not So Smart. Dude is chronicling all the ways in which we delude himself. In other words: He picked the perfect topic for a blog. His subject […]

the disintegration of the persistence of memory

June 6th, 2010 in education

I’ve got what I’d call a crappy long-term memory. My earliest memory is from kindergarten. All my classmates were stretched out on their cots in the dark for naptime. I stayed awake because my mother was on her way to pick me up. We were going to get my first pair of glasses. My mom […]

phrenology chart versus dermatome chart

March 2nd, 2010 in education, fun, science

My mom just sent me this dermatome chart (actually, she sent me this more useful chart, but the first link is prettier). [More on dermatomes here.] And of course the first thing that sprang to mind was: “Hey, phrenology wasn’t as bat-shit insane as I previously considered it.” I mean, ok, it was really crazy. […]

11 seconds of snow

February 10th, 2010 in nyc

Here’s a timelapse I made of the snow in my (new!) backyard in Brooklyn of the snow today from 9:10 a.m. to about 5:30 p.m. (when I ran out of daylight): Embedded video doesn’t work in most RSS readers, so you may have to check out the original post. Set to the first 11 seconds […]

happy lonely hearts’ club month

February 1st, 2010 in art, fun, internet

It’s February! The month of Valentine’s Day and the Super Bowl; the shortest, coldest month of the year in the Northern Hemisphere; and, yes, the month named for the whips that pagans once cut from the animals they sacrificed, which were used to whip girls and women in celebration of the nascent Valentine’s Day holiday […]

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