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San Francisco Design @ Withjoy.com Joined over 9 years ago
Michael Dorian hasn't posted any stories yet.
Hope they keep the old Framer around. Framer X might as well be called something totally different. Maybe have 2 product lines. Framer (For rapid ideation and prototyping) and Composer (Or something along those lines for production design and collaboration.)
Doesn't mean it's a bad product. The positive feedback comes from big companies with multi-user design teams trying to maintain design systems. Totally different problem statement.
Because moving to React is completely opposite of what the original goal was. Additionally, they completely abandoned the code editor. Want to try to "sketch" something? You have to now deal with the weight of React and even edit the code in a separate editor and import the component in. That's a workflow more a kin to building what you already know you want to build (final components) versus trying to figure out what you want to make. I would wager the move to React was purely driven by the desire to have this "design store". Reacts component and packaging paradigm lends itself well to this.
We will consider Framer for that aspect of the workflow, but what I'm arguing is its a totally different product now.
Not the same at all. Framer was way easier. Especially with the last release with the design surface. The way you mentioned above might actually be easier then the new Framer though.
This is a sad announcement as a fan of Framer who was excited about where it was heading and the problem it was originally trying to solve. With the release of X, it's no longer a tool focused on the ideation and prototyping stages of design. This part of the design process is a more difficult problem to solve. Tools that help designers unlock new ideas versus recycling old ones.
Framer before X had some amazing ideas on how to make a general purpose interaction sketching tool. They took the right approach. Use a general purpose logic model that code brings but slowly remove it's complexity through smart UI, simplifying the language etc. Continuing to abstract. So much potential to go further when the output doesn't need to carry the weight of being "production" code. And you focused on those 3 things. Framer was the first tool to get as close as possible to a free form prototyping tool for new and fresh ideas.
With Framer X, they are now exiting this space and clearly focusing on the hot flavor of the month which is design systems and collaboration. It's sad to see Framer abandon it's original unsolved mission of "Prototype Anything" and become another "glue" tool for large design teams. It make sense financially. A lot more money selling seats to design managers with big teams then focusing on prototyping and ideation which is more in the market of an individual designer.
Sure it's now dead simple to make the same boring interaction that every tool already lets you do (Page transitions, scrolling, etc) which I would argue doesn't even need to be prototyped anyways.
It's now visual screen design tool (Sketch, Figma) backed by a symbols / component library that you can edit using React and share components via some cloud hosting. And if we're working in mobile native or not React? Then we really just have a visual design tool with a fancy components library.
Framer went backwards in search of a holy grail that will never work - Design tools that aim to maintain production code. Its production code for a reason. The whole designer <> engineer thing has been tried for years. I worked at Microsoft in tooling and we aimed for the same thing. Crashing and burning because designers are not engineers.
Feels like after every release, Framer wants to reinvent itself. I kind of wish it stood tall and continue on the march of solving the unsolved problem in digital design. - Helping creative people move beyond screen design.
In the words of Koen the 3 things he wants Framer to become -
RIP Framer, Hello Framer X. Prototyping was sooo 2016.
This is awesome. Love the detailed look. I remember them. They were definitely "web 1.0" feeling. Feels like a good compete to Shopify now.
Me likey. Digging the motion in the logo.
Agreed. XD's visual design tools are a bit too limiting for exploring.
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A friend and I were discussing this here at the studio. Hard to pinpoint why it feels weird but he said "It doesn't feel like I'm using a tool. Like my work just blends into everything else. Catches me off guard." I think that is my sentiment too. Maybe we are used to what tools and inputs are suppose to look like and reacting to that. Things definitely feel less clickable / discoverable. Not sure if it's a reaction to change or truly a step back in usability.