One benefit of Test-Driven Development (TDD) is facilitating the development of small, modularized code units. Teams can integrate these units easily into various places in the codebase. Similarly, Storybook-Driven Development (SDD) helps developers create extensible and lightweight user interface primitives. By using SDD, we inherently follow the principles of component-driven user interface design and dumb vs. smart component separation. It also creates stronger collaboration between developers and other team members.
Practicing Component Driven Design
The first benefit of using SDD is to implement Component Driven User Interface design. Component-driven design focuses on creating websites by building components, or site primitives, and then combining them into larger and more complex components. Structuring UIs with components, rather than screen by screen, helps create more flexible and reusable pages. SDD is essential for facilitating this modern web design methodology.
Intentional Component Design
Another benefit of SDD is that it helps in the development of dumb vs. smart components. Dumb components (also known as presentational or pure components) are responsible only for displaying data, without knowing its origin. Smart components communicate with the service layer to obtain and pass along data to the dumb components. Storybook is perfectly suited for developing dumb components. This helps us develop components more intentionally, with their end use in mind. In this way, SDD helps keep business logic out of your dumb components and sorts your components into the buckets of dumb vs. smart.
Finally, SDD facilitates communication between developers, designers, and clients. Clearly, Storybook is excellent for developing UI components in isolation. Furthermore, it is also great for allowing designers to see and “feel” what those components will look like, without having to navigate to where they live within the application. Deploying your Storybook link is also an effective way for the client to see the components being built and to easily communicate that information to internal stakeholders. SDD is important in that it allows developers, designers, and other stakeholders to collaborate in a relatively frictionless way; something that can be challenging with more traditional project setups.
Implement Storybook-Driven Development
SDD simplifies component-driven design, makes deliberate the design and implementation of dumb vs. smart components, and helps create a lively discussion between developers, designers, and other stakeholders. Implementing SDD on already established projects (especially those that don’t currently use Storybook) can be challenging. Therefore, to reap the advantages of SDD, I recommend you try it out at the start of your next project!