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I don't know a lot about development either so I could be wrong, but what have they really achieved? A browser based vector editor? You can find free and open source browser based vector editors made by single people as side projects.
It's not the technical side I find lacking with Figma though, it's the ideas it brings to the table. What does it really do that the more established, well supported, feature rich and native alternatives are not offering?
For me personally it's Team Libraries and the presentation utility that sets Figma apart. Team Libraries are unmatched currently, as my company relies heavily on design systems for our interactive side of things it's invaluable to have an always up-to-date version of our design system highly accessible.
Presentation is a big one and the prototype feature adds more on this. Being able to simply give someone a link to view the latest version of a design is a huge boon to accessibility and transparency. There's no issue of Mac/Windows for accessing files or exporting to a PDF and combining art boards to create a presentation every time someone needs to see a design.
Otherwise there is almost near parity with Sketch which is great because it made the switch very easy.
That's interesting. Would you be willing to share more details about how design works at bluebeam? How many designers, how are they organised and how do they collaborate with the rest of the company / each other, what does the design process look like from concept to release and testing.
I'd very much appreciate it.
Here's how I feel about this:
Dropbox / Something else used for collaboration > Sketch + random unmaintained/broken plugins > Airbnb's design to code ( to keep your styleguide in check ) > Craft / Invision / other prototype tools > Zeplin / other handoff targeted software > Code
Figma > Code
Hm, I don't use Sketch, I use Photoshop, so I wouldn't know your pains of relying on deprecated plugins (cause PS doesn't have any good ones), but I do understand the frustration of having to maintain the same design once in Dropbox, once in Avocode / Zeplin, once in an InVision prototype. Would you have a Figma file with a ready built prototype you can share so I can try it out - see what it can do? If you do, give me the most complex one you have. I wanna see what Figma can do.
Performance, real time collaboration, synchronized assets, better color management, better font rendering, better pixel snapping, better components support, better font management, better text handling, prototyping, cross-platform compatibility, better project management, handoff support, tidie&clearner interface, better mobile-preview app, better pricing, that's all I could think of, but they are all valid reasons.
Give it a try, and bring a friend with you, it's fun :)
Alright. Real time collaboration does sound great, but can you name one use case for it? Collaboration is indeed great, but have you ever worked on the same document at the same time with another person? What would be the benefits of that?
Better colour management, better font rendering than Adobe? Being better at colour management than Sketch's non existent solution is easy.
What do you mean by better project management? What features / tools does Figma offer to help us stay more organised? This is one of the areas where a lot of time gets wasted so I'd be curious to know what they bring to the table.
Cleaner interface - maybe, but it's also far less efficient: in the 10 minutes I spent with it I was annoyed at having to loose a ton of screen real estate because of Chrome's bars and the layers panel has a lot of indent, meaning when you go 2/3 groups deep, you'll stop being able to read the names.
Better pricing, really? It costs the same as Adobe and more than Sketch (albeit you have to pay for a handoff solution like Avocode with those two).
I don't mean to sound rude - I know my tone is not always the friendliest, but I think these are important questions to ask and we should hold our tools to the highest standards.
I think on the management side, a big plus is that the commenting takes place within the tool, right on the artboards, not in a third party tool like Zeplin or Invision. And the file exists in one place, there is one instance of the document with version control built in. No overwriting issues.
I think the collaboration thing is interesting because designers haven't been able to work on the same artboard before. Does it fit into existing workflows..maybe not…but there are a lot of possibilities for new ones. Where I work we have a remote team, it can be really handy. I can now have those conversations at my desk where we shift some elements around to see what works best, with someone in another office or time zone. If you build out reusable components, say for wire framing, you could do a lot of exercises with multiple designers all in one file. The collaboration/multiplayer features work great even if there is only one designer. Having the devs, and stakeholders on a call while everyone is in the same file (even as a viewer), and being able to see what people are pointing at, whilst making changes right in the document is very handy.
Re: pricing with Sketch. The difference is pretty marginal when you factor in Sketch's annual licensing fee + other tools.
I'm working on my start-up right now, and I'm collaborating in real time to set up the design direction with my co-founder, it's a lot better. It's amazing.
I'll send a more detailed answer later, but for now, I just wanna say this: I design on a 15' Retina MacBook Pro, so I know the pain of not having real-estate. There's a shortcut to hide the UI in Figma, on Mac it's CMD + " , and it's your best friend! Get a configurable buttons mouse and bind that shortcut to a mouse button, it's amazing ;)
Figma has a web app which gives you more real estate to play.
Where the design community meets.
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