June 24, 2015

A Design Handbook for the Code-Minded

These days, designers are increasingly expected to know how to code. At Soso, we think it is just as important for coders to understand design. There is a special type of creative magic that happens when we combine forces: we come up with ideas we'd never think of solo, we avoid hiccups in implementation, and we just plain appreciate each other more. A shared basic knowledge of each other's specialties helps us collaborate more effectively throughout the entire process of developing a digital work.

We've created the Sosolimited Design Handbook to establish a common language about design for all members of our team. The lessons compiled in the handbook cover the foundational design principles that we always return to—with a particular focus on applying them to screen-based media.

The Design Handbook curates useful design articles, tutorials, videos, and games available on the web into digestible and focused "lessons." The lessons rely on resources that experts have written, designed, programmed, and released to the world. In the open-source spirit, we are making our handbook publicly available as a GitHub wiki. 

So far we've created three sections for self-paced exploration. In the Typography module, learn the basics of typography with a particular emphasis on working with text on screen. The lesson covers type terminology, choosing and using typefaces, hierarchical layouts, and more. Grid Systems explains the mathematical underpinnings of grid-based design and includes some best practices and practical tools to help you implement them in your work. The Design for Screens lesson is full of great tools and references for creating pixel-perfect, typographically-excellent designs while improving your process and efficiency. 

We plan to continue updating the handbook to keep the information presented relevant, current, and concise. Check it out!