Fundamentals

At its best, the front end is invisible; it gracefully gets out of the way to allows our users to do their work.

Elegance in evolution

Front end developers harness ever-changing media in elegant ways to build products prepared for the future.

An example web page on desktop animating to tablet animating to mobile An example web page on desktop animating to tablet animating to mobile

Prototype

Static assets only tell part of the story. At a minimum, living prototypes illustrate interaction affordances, feedback, animations, transitions, user preferences, technological inconsistencies and responsive interfaces. Medium-informed designs also set realistic expectations and give stakeholders a clearer picture of what they’re investing in.

Hands holding a smart phone and a tablet side by side, implying a comparison between how the content on the screens are laid out Hands holding a smart phone and a tablet side by side, implying a comparison between how the content on the screens are laid out

Connect directly with people

Brenda Laurel said, “A design isn’t done until a person interacts with it.” The best way to test and validate design decisions is to put a prototype into someone’s hands. Handing someone a functioning prototype provides insight and visibility into the exact moment their mental model is either confirmed or broken. It is the intersection of “I want to” and “I can.”

Code is a design tool

The way you build for an experience can make or break it. Code is the material in our fabrication process; it makes ideas tangible. Designing to the strengths of your medium from the start ensures that you deliver something true to the environment in which it lives.

Better together

The key to a great product is open and positive communication between designers and developers. A trusting and respectful environment encourages creativity and leads to a better outcome neither could have imagined alone.

Icon of two people holding hands Icon of two people holding hands

Performance

People depend on just-in-time products daily to get their jobs done, to connect with friends and family, or simply to pass the time. When someone has 30 seconds to check in, a product that gets them where they want to go quickly is one they willingly revisit. Performance brings speed and dependability to user experience.

Fast products are easier to find

Search engines rank high-performing sites higher because their content is faster to find, parse and index. If a product loads quickly for users, it loads quickly for search crawlers too.

Speed goes beyond user value

Speedy products are less expensive to operate and facilitate potential for more revenue. In terms of sheer numbers, if more people can access our products, more people can invest time and money into them.

One step ahead

Performance can surprise and delight the user. Strive to be so sharp and snappy that users will think you knew what they wanted before they did.

Shoe with a wing attached to the end of it Shoe with a wing attached to the end of it

Responsive

There is no way to plan for every device or to know how a particular device is being used. Content tells you exactly where a design breaks down, something lorem ipsum cannot do. A strong content strategy at the core of our product designs enables us to build experiences that are responsive to their environments.

With content as the foundation, we can progressively enhance, adding layers of polish, interaction and device capabilities. Because there are no guarantees, starting layouts with a mobile-first approach affords strict attention to hierarchy and helps you focus on what is truly important to users.

Meet users where they are

Content can live anywhere, even on devices without screens. Designing for sensors instead of screens keeps the focus on the information. Product ecosystems eventually boil down to the value of the content. Thoughtful content strategy and information architecture make APIs and URLs easier to design, and ensures portability and access of content regardless of interface.

Accessible content is for everyone

Just as there are no guarantees about how content is being accessed, there are no guarantees about who will access your content. Building responsible designs means inclusion, from the very beginning, of users with all types of needs. Accessible design is the difference between building stairs and building a ramp.

Fast-performing, responsible design also opens doors to our global community. Build designs to be flexible and resilient, adapting to written and spoken languages of all origins. Content-focused products should work just as well when read right-to-left.

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