AMA: The team behind Adobe's design system, Spectrum

over 2 years ago from Shawn Cheris, Director of Experience Design - Brand & Experience

  • Shawn Cheris, over 2 years ago

    Great question.

    First, We've already applied a lot of Spectrum elements like colors to our flagship apps like Photoshop and Illustrator, and obviously those apps are more dense and have different needs. But if you look at how those apps looked five years ago and today, the Spectrum influence will be unmistakeable. We're looking at a second round of work on those apps now and those teams are doing a ton of work to make them ready for bigger UI shifts.

    But we're also investing as a company in new apps like Photoshop for iPad, Lightroom CC, Premiere Rush, and other apps that we announced at MAX last year. These apps have a lot of the power of their traditional desktop counterparts, but from their inception, the overall organization of the app has been considered with Spectrum in mind. We're using a lot more progressive disclosure and modality instead of just throwing every panel in the world at you all the time.

    Xd is like this, too... the property inspector in Xd only ever shows you what you need at any given moment. So even though there's a ton of power there, we're selective about what you see and when.

    From the beginning, Spectrum was designed to not only give us a North Star to aim for with new apps (some of which you're seeing now), it also considered what we'd need to do to start modernizing our existing flagship apps.

    2 points