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As the web continues to become more complex, designing static pages has become untenable, so that many of us have started to approach design in a more systematic way. In this book, Alla Kholmatova sets out to identify what makes an effective design system that can empower teams to create great digital products.
Not all design systems are equally effective. Some can generate coherent user experiences, others produce confusing patchwork designs. Some inspire teams to contribute to them, others are neglected. Some get better with time, more cohesive and better functioning; others get worse, becoming bloated and cumbersome.
What are the key qualities of a well-functioning, enduring design system? Throughout the book, Alla will share an approach that will help you every day with your work.
PART 1: FOUNDATIONS
In the first part we’ll talk about the foundations of a design system – patterns and practices. Design patterns are repeatable, reusable parts of the interface, from the concrete and functional (like buttons and text fields) to the more descriptive (like iconography styles, colors, and typography). Patterns interconnect, and together they form the language of your product’s interface. Shared practices are how we choose to create, capture, share and use those patterns by following a set of principles, or by keeping a pattern library.
Chapter 1: Design Systems
Chapter 2: Design Principles
Chapter 3: Functional Patterns
Chapter 4: Perceptual Patterns
Chapter 5: Shared Language
PART 2: PROCESS
A design system cannot be built overnight – it evolves gradually with your product. But there are certain principles and practices that we can follow to make sure the system develops in the right direction and provide us some degree of control over it. The second part of the book focuses on practical steps and techniques to establish and maintain a design system, including planning the work; conducting an interface inventory; setting up a pattern library; creating, documenting, evolving and maintaining design patterns.
Chapter 6: Parameters Of Your System
Chapter 7: Planning And Practicalities
Chapter 8: Systemizing Functional Patterns
Chapter 9: Systemizing Perceptual Patterns
Chapter 10: Pattern Libraries