Our story

In 1996, a computer-savvy physicist met a book-loving researcher.

Together they created OpenRoad; a firm that understood both human behaviour and technology.

Old photo of Gordon Ross and Darren Gibbons as part of Our Story page content
Gordon Ross and Darren Gibbons

Where user experience and technology converge.

OpenRoad was one of the first agencies to pair human-centred design with technology to solve complex business problems. By focusing on user experience we amplified the impact of their technology offerings.

Building a community of practitioners.

This passion for user experience contributed to a vibrant community of UX professionals in Vancouver. Through partnership with other local practitioners, we founded the Vancouver User Experience Group and the Vancouver User Experience Awards. With membership in the thousands, these groups remain an important part of Vancouver's UX community.

Photo from a Vancouver User Experience Awards night at the Imperial

Responding to market demand with a product offering.

In 2005 OpenRoad launched ThoughtFarmer, an off-the-shelf intranet product. ThoughtFarmer was born out of a client project and turned the standard approach to intranets upside-down by putting communication power in the hands of the employee.

Photo of Darren Gibbons and two other ThoughtFarmer staff

Bridging strategy and execution.

In 2013 OpenRoad acquired long-time design partner Mod7. With the addition of a Creative Services team, this acquisition closed the gap in our service offerings, increasing the scale and the impact of OpenRoad's work to include everything from design to build to implementation.

Rebranding from OpenRoad to OXD.

In 2019, OpenRoad became OXD. This rebrand articulated our evolution over the course of two decades, while setting the tone for the future. OXD is where past experience converges with new opportunities.

Photo of the OXD signage at Gastown office location in support of Our Story page

The next 20 years.

OXD represents a crossroad; the confluence, then intersection. It also represents the new possibilities that are born out of bringing together the unexpected. At its core, OXD is about making new experiences possible.

Gordon Ross and Darren Gibbons sitting at a shared desk laughing together in the office.
Gordon Ross and Darren Gibbons