[Systems & Namespace] Atomic Design

This page displays take away information I have saved from articles read focused on design systems and namespaces methods. I use this as a reference point for research in the design systems and namespaces category.

Take Away:

Atoms are the basic building blocks of matter. Applied to web interfaces, atoms are our HTML tags, such as a form label, an input or a button. Atoms can also include more abstract elements like color palettes, fonts and even more invisible aspects of an interface like animations.

Molecules are groups of atoms bonded together and are the smallest fundamental units of a compound. These molecules take on their own properties and serve as the backbone of our design systems. For example, a form label, input or button aren’t too useful by themselves, but combine them together as a form and now they can actually do something together.

Organisms are groups of molecules joined together to form a relatively complex, distinct section of an interface. Organisms can consist of similar and/or different molecule types. For example, a masthead organism might consist of diverse components like a logo, primary navigation, search form, and list of social media channels. But a “product grid” organism might consist of the same molecule (possibly containing a product image, product title and price) repeated over and over again.

At the template stage, we break our chemistry analogy to get into language that makes more sense to our clients and our final output. Templates consist mostly of groups of organisms stitched together to form pages. It’s here where we start to see the design coming together and start seeing things like layout in action.

Pages are specific instances of templates. Here, placeholder content is replaced with real representative content to give an accurate depiction of what a user will ultimately see.