Git for this, Git for that. If it's not open-source, it's not Git.
I mean, to be fair, it's an interface on top of git ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Conceptually I'm not sure how a big a problem version control is between designers. Most designers are working in a very "conceptual" stage of creation. This is fundamentally different than the way developers work. Dev code is operational, while mock-ups are transient. They have a finite amount of value before they disappear in to the Archive folder.
Here is a normal workflow for two designers on a typical design team: Designer 1 > Does Task > Designer 1 Finish Task Designer 2 > Does Task > Designer 2 Finish Task and in extreme cases: Designer 1 > Starts Task > Designer 1 dies :( > Designer 2 Finish Task
Where is the flow where designer 1 and 2 would need to be working on the same task/file? Designer 1 and 2 would be working on a completely separate challenges. The chance of them overlapping is significantly low (ie. how valuable is this problem?)
The bigger challenge here is keeping a repo of COMMON elements in sync to some degree. I want my component library to be syncing and versioning every time someone is making changes to it because the benefits for consistency (and oversight/some level of control) is high. Version control could help solve this challenge. Craft and Brand.ai are kind of doing it, but I suspect Sketch should actually just be offering a way to sync symbols across files natively.
Anyway I'm rambling. Don't read any of that if you don't have time.
Working on a team of 4-5 designers I've also found that this type of workflow is fairly uncommon. I can see some value to versioning on a singular project: If I want to try experimental something you branch a project and go crazy knowing you can always revert to the initial version if it doesn't get approved.
I see some value to having one singular file that is the source of truth but just not enough to justify the costs here.
Maybe larger teams have a different experience?
I want my component library to be syncing and versioning every time someone is making changes to it because the benefits for consistency (and oversight/some level of control) is high.
Figma has this in Team Libraries. It's incredible.
I can see your point about smaller teams. I work on a team of about 50 designers and we're in the middle of a compete overhaul of our design system. Having a single source of truth for everything would be hugely beneficial.
Version control for designers is really awesome but is it $21 dollars a month awesome? For development version control ranges from free to <$10 per user. It feels wildly expensive for the scope of the problem it solves.
Been using since beta release. It's actually really fun to use besides all the other benefits. I also like not digging through the Finder. I'm a very organized kind of person with my files and naming, and this just brings that to the next level for me.
I had never felt so confident about version and change control in a design project :)
Gracias for this tutorial!
Sure! Tweet me if you have any questions :)
We've been using Abstract in our team, and it's very nice.. I'm having a difficult time with the price though.. It's too steep in my opinion.
As helpful as the product is, it's not a requirement for getting our work done, but it gives peace of mind.. At $21 per user, per month on a 3 person team - that comes to $756 a year...
Does the product save us at least $756 a year? Hard to say.. It probably does, but it's almost impossible to measure accurately..
I'm curious, how does the product actually save you money? It sounds more like $756 for peace of mind. Which is quite a lot, especially if you don't need the comment system and don't need the visual preview. Github can do this for as low as $84 year.
I'm curious, how does the product actually save you money
Think of it this way - the combined salary for our design team is around $200k. We work about 240 days of the year, give or take a few.. and an average day is 8 hours.. If we assume that 6 of those hours are spent being productive that would be 4,320 hours per year of productivity, making the combined hourly rate of the design team around $46 per hour.
Therefore if the design team spends more than 16.4 hours in total throughout the entire year on tedious tasks like ensuring file consistency, cleaning folders, chasing up each other for correct files (we are a multi city team) - then Abstract begins saving us money.
Added to that, we get peace of mind.
In terms of Github as an alternative - It's simply not as easy to use as Abstract, therefore less likely to encourage continual use.
Makes sense, thank you!
If it was free or one-time payment then I would consider using this but this feels like too much money for something you can do by yourself pretty easy.
I use GitUp for little GUI magic and Terminal (well, iTerm). Make a branch -> do changes -> commit and push to GitHub or BitBucket.... And that's it. Anyone can just pull latest changes without much hassle.
Interesting, this does not seem like a problem I currently have, but I can understand it being a welcome addition to a healthy team workflow.
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Abstract rewires how we think about the designer's workflow. It promotes focus and transparency and it's all there – every last change! I love it :)
I tend to use the built in browse all versions inside of sketch. Works well for me (unless I move the file which tends to sever the connection ) :/ but just don't move things
Is 2017 really a year of version control apps for designers? What happened so that everyone started developing them? Should designers control versions lol?
I wonder if LayerVault was ahead of its time, or if this next wave of similar products will see the same fate. Great idea, but for whatever reason, it didn't work out.
Do you have experience with Plant? Never heard of it and it looks really good
no sir, I don't..I bookmarked it to sign up for the beta..but never did..I guess it still is in beta..
I think, at least in the case of Sketch, it probably had something to do with them changing their file format to proper JSON which is easier to diff. I just signed up for Abstract and just found out about Kactus so I need to see how these tools work in practice.
Awesome, wonder how Kaktus is like
Hi! Mathieu, author of Kactus here. I'd love to give you a tour if you want :)
What happened so that everyone started developing them?
Robust nested symbols in Sketch and an industry-wide focus on pattern libraries. Which isn't to say that these are the only two reasons why version control is good for us to use (ever held CMD+Z down for more than 10 seconds?), but because of them, version control across teams makes a lot of sense.