Wireframing for Non-Designers – A Crash Course

Wireframes are not just for designers! As a software maker, you can and should be using them to eliminate risk and validate concepts.

These tools benefit the entire team, and they can be created by any member of the team. This crash course will teach you why wireframes are important, when you should utilize them, and how to best present them to your stakeholders. Read more on Wireframing for Non-Designers – A Crash Course…

The Many Pros of Using Zeplin for Design Collaboration

There are countless design collaboration tools out there today. It can be overwhelming to know which ones are worth the time (and cost) investment, and which ones will turn into another item you need to maintain. I’ve recently started using Zeplin on a few of my projects, and I can confidently say it has improved my teams’ workflows. Read more on The Many Pros of Using Zeplin for Design Collaboration…

How Traditional Design Principles Apply to Software Design

There’s a perceived divide between “traditional” designers (who work in print and branding) and software designers. But the reality is, most of us received the same foundational education and follow the same design principles. The tools and outcomes are often different, but the ingredients have a lot in common. Read more on How Traditional Design Principles Apply to Software Design…

How to Bundle & Deliver Design Assets Properly

As a software designer, it is inevitable that at some point in time, you’ll need to hand your design files off to someone else. That person may be another designer within your organization, a designer within a client’s organization, or perhaps not even a designer at all.

I’ve been fiddling with different ways to bundle up deliverables over the years, while simultaneously growing more frustrated with the state of design deliverables I’ve received from others. We can do better. Follow these tips for a seamless design asset handoff. Read more on How to Bundle & Deliver Design Assets Properly…

What Is a Software Designer, and How Can You Become One?

I frequently get questions from traditional graphic design students, inquiring about what being a software designer is like. They want to know more about what I do and what they can do to get their foot in the door as a software maker. The answer to both of those questions can get complicated, but I think I’ve gotten fairly good at boiling it down. Read more on What Is a Software Designer, and How Can You Become One?…

The Macro Impact of Microinteractions – Making Users Happy

I’ll admit it. I’m that designer. I’m constantly sticking my phone in peoples’ faces and exclaiming, “Look how cool this is!”

But I’m never talking about a specific product or trending meme. I’m always talking about a unique and delightful interaction within an application—the thing that gives me the “warm fuzzies”—the microinteractions. Read more on The Macro Impact of Microinteractions – Making Users Happy…

The Developer’s Guide to Sketch

After several instances of developers ooh-ing and ahh-ing while they watch me quickly navigate and edit in Sketch, I’ve decided it’s time for a developer’s guide to Sketch. This guide will start with the basics and then jump into some very handy tips and tricks, equipping you with the knowledge you’ll need to quickly and painlessly dissect your designer’s files.
Read more on The Developer’s Guide to Sketch…

Why “Fake It ’til You Make It” Is Bad Advice, and What to Do Instead

Prior to joining Atomic, I was thrilled to read about the six values Atoms live by, with the notion of acting transparently resonating the loudest. This was a relief, since one of the previous pieces of career advice I’d received was to “fake it ’til you make it.” Fortunately, I quickly learned that this was a poor suggestion.
Read more on Why “Fake It ’til You Make It” Is Bad Advice, and What to Do Instead…

The Whats, Hows, and Whos of Empathy for Software Makers

Practicing empathy is for more than designers. Having empathy makes you a better designer software consultant. The notion that being empathetic can make you a better consultant is not a new one. The word “empathy” is thrown around a lot in software, but usually in a buzzword-like fashion. So, what does being empathetic mean in our line of work? How should we practice it? And who deserves it? Read more on The Whats, Hows, and Whos of Empathy for Software Makers…