Be nice. Or else.
That’s a great question. First and foremost, please note that my answer comes from Basecamp’s perspective, and may not be indicative of other remote teams.
To start, all of Basecamp works remotely—even the 12 employees who live in Chicago out of the 45+ who work at the company. So to directly answer your question, our design teams do indeed work remotely—and we work together, and with other programmers in this way.
Our remote working setup is a bit like this: - We share work on real code bases on GitHub - We share process, progress, and visual decisions on Basecamp - We chat on Campfire everyday - We have individual conversations with Messages/Jabber
That’s really about it in terms of our communication tool set. Now, to further this.
At Basecamp, to be a designer—product and marketing—means you wear a few hats. - Designers write their own copy. - Designers write their own HTML and CSS. - Designers sketch and prototype interactions with CoffeeScript. - Designers craft the visuals and aesthetics.
Now, this doesn’t mean every designer at Basecamp offer the same exact skillsets. Quite the opposite! Jamie are relied on more for visual and graphic design and marketing, yet we both work on product features. The other designers may be better versed in native app code bases and UI designs, so we default to them to work on new features and new products. It’s a balance of skills with our ever-awesome design team, and we complement each other well.
But I’d be remiss to say that everyone in Basecamp is wildly talented, and inspire the hell out of me. You can meet them here: http://basecamp.com/team
Be nice. Or else.
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