Atomic Design: Discover all its advantages and benefits.

Atomic-Design-Brad-Frost-2013-BookIn previous articles from the Itequia Blog, we talked about the importance of having a good design in our websites and applications. Therefore, today we will talk about Atomic Design.

The concept of Atomic Web Design first appeared in the book Atomic Design de Brad Frost, first published in 2013. And since its publication, its theories have become a reference for the creation of design systems.

As Brad Frost explains in his book, he conceives web interface design as a whole composed of smaller units, which he calls atoms. And by reusing and combining these small components, we generate larger elements, which are the different parts of the design of a digital product.

What is Atomic Design?

 

We can define Atomic Design as a methodology for designing and developing websites or applications based on the concept of breaking complex user interfaces into smaller, more manageable parts.

The main idea is to create a hierarchical structure of reusable components, starting with the smallest and simplest elements, known as “atoms,” and building larger and more complex structures, called “molecules,” “organisms,” “templates,” and “pages.”

Brad Frost introduced the Atomic Design methodology in 2013 as a way to help designers and developers create more consistent, scalable, and efficient design systems.

By breaking down the design into its smallest parts, designers and developers can focus on creating and testing each component independently, making maintenance and system updates easier over time.

What are the 5 levels of Atomic Design?

Below is a summary of the five levels of Atomic Design listed by Brad Frost:

 

The-five-stages-of-atomic-design-Itequia

 

Atoms

In this first level, we can find the smallest and most basic components of the system, such as buttons, form fields, typography, color palettes, and icons.

Each of them has its variations that represent different states: selected, focused, disabled, etc.

 

Stage1-atoms-atomic-design-Itequia

Molecules 

In this second level, we find Molecules, which can be defined as a group of atoms that work together to perform a specific function with more complex elements, such as a search box or a login form. Or, for example, an area with an avatar, name, and informative text. Or an icon next to text that performs a certain function.

 

Stage2-molecules-atomic-design-Itequia

 

Organisms

In the third level, we find Organisms, a combination of molecules that form a distinct section of a user interface, such as a header or footer. Or when we create a user list or combine icons and text to create the navigation of an application.

 

Stage3-organims-atomic-design-Itequia

 

Templates

In the fourth level, we find Templates, a layout that defines the general structure, the skeleton, of a page, including placeholders for specific content. That is a combination of different organisms that make up a page or an application.

Pages

The last level of Atomic Design, Pages, would be the final result of the system, which includes content, images, real data, and other details that make up the final design.

What are the advantages of Atomic Design?

By following the methodology developed by Brad Frost of Atomic Design, designers and developers can create a more structured and organized design system, which will allow us to keep it up to date and scale it more easily over time.

Therefore, the advantages of Atomic Design are clear:

 

  • Facilitates the creation of the style guide
  • Allows for faster prototyping since the elements will already be designed
  • Speeds up the process of restyling the product and/or adding new features, as changes will not require programming everything from scratch
  • Fewer components will make the design and code more consistent and efficient
  • Allows atoms to be reused to create any required design

 

Atomic Design is a mental model that helps with the decomposition and creation of interfaces. It is not a linear and unique model to follow, as it also serves to improve and update already created interfaces.

Therefore, the use of Atomic Design allows us to create coherence and homogeneity within a product or digital environment. This will be reflected in a better user experience (UX) in the interaction and use of our product.

Whatever the needs of your project, you can contact us, and we will help you design your product or service.

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