Latest issue

Issue #53

Redesigned comments. Design tools performance. Staying organized.

Hello! 👋 If you’re in the US, I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. This week, I’m thankful for the comments redesign that makes it much easier to work with feedback. Great update!

Marc Edwards, the creator of iStat Menus and a few other Mac apps, wrote a blog post comparing hardware utilization by Figma, Sketch, Adobe XD, and Affinity Designer. As expected, Figma’s web app can’t load CPU as heavily as native apps, but it uses GPU a lot for some operations. Helpful to know if you’re looking to get a new Mac.

Josh Cusick from the Design Systems team at Microsoft wrote how they build and maintain an internal Figma UI kit. Lots of good tips on organizing files and preparing for developer handoff. See also an in-depth guide on using design tokens and tips for file organization from Ridd.

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Recent issues

Issue #52

Plugin parameters. Maker Week. Automator.

If you’re reading this newsletter in your email client, chances are my latest project went well! 😅 Lately, I’ve been working on the final major piece of the new Figmalion 2.0 — moving the newsletter from MailChimp to a custom setup. The new website and content are handled by a powerful Craft CMS, mailing lists and campaigns are managed by the Campaign plugin, and the emails are delivered with Postmark’s Broadcast Stream (hey, I work there!). Now I finally have more control over email templates, can stop copy-pasting content from the website to MailChimp, and save time and money during the publishing process. Hopefully, this setup will help me switch to a weekly sending schedule soon, as issues have been getting too long for a while.

In the meantime, Figma released plugin parameters accessible from the keyboard to speed up the workflow. It was also time for their regular Maker Weeks, where many cool projects were presented — see a roundup at the end of the issue. Christine Vallaure wrote a great post on designing with relative font sizes, and Rafa shared a few highlights from switching to Sketch 😮 Last but not least, the Automator plugin by Jordan Singer is now the hottest project and a few folks have already shared their automations made during the private beta.

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Issue #51

Interactive Components. FigJam widgets and plugins. Design tokens.

During the last couple of weeks, Figma released multiple updates that were in the works for a long time. First, after being introduced at Config Europe in 2020, Interactive Components are finally out of closed beta and available to everyone! The power they provide is hard to take for granted, and I’m excited about using them in my projects and getting fully interactive components from the Community.

Second, FigJam rolled out its biggest release to date: new pricing, open sessions, widgets, plugins, embedded content, new shapes, code blocks, templates… oh my! I included a few tweets from the team giving an insider look at how these features were built, along with some of my favorite new widgets.

Last but not least, read how Google’s Material Design is teaming up with Figma to bring great UI from design to code, see how GitHub uses Jan Six’s plugin to work with design tokens, and listen to Dylan Field talking about creators economy and low-ego leadership.

Enjoy the issue!

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