San Francisco, California

The Least Harm

Frequently my work in the field of design systems isn’t about pushing an interface to the best visual fidelity or using the coolest and most crazy CSS tricks. It’s also not about building the most beautiful interface with the most delightful interactions in the world.

Instead – and this is something I fear a lot of folks generally don’t quite get – is that it’s often about evaluating damage to the system. Every new product and feature is a threat to the integrity of the system.

Good design systems work is not about consistency. Although yes the more non-reusable parts we have in our front-end, the more likelihood there is for visual regressions and bugs. It’s not about the UI though – looking at an interface is not a measure of the quality of its system.

Good design systems work is often about doing the least harm instead.