Brad Frost

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Roll-Your-Own vs Third-Party Design System Reference Website

A design system’s reference website (such as lightningdesignsystem.com, polaris.shopify.com, and a slew of others) serves as the center of gravity for the design system. It rounds up all the design system’s ingredients and serves a watering hole for different disciplines, […]

Joining Project Healthy Minds

I’m thrilled to announce that I’m joining Project Healthy Minds, a non-profit focused on destigmitizing mental illness and getting people access to mental health care and resources. There is a growing global mental health crisis that has been exacerbated by […]

Notion Habit Tracking: Update 2

I wrote about how much I love Notion and I’ve been keeping track of my healthy habits using the tool. Keeping up with new years resolutions and forming new habits requires consistency above all else. When things start slipping, it’s […]

Front-of-the-front-end and back-of-the-front-end web development

The Great Divide is real, and I’m pleased that the terms “front-of-the-front-end” and “back-of-the-front-end” have gained traction ever since I quipped about them on the Shop Talk Show. A few of my clients have actually moved away from a culture […]

Notion Habit Tracking: Update 1

I recently wrote about how much I love Notion and have been using it to stay on top of my personal and professional life. One of the things I’ve been using Notion for is to track my progress on healthy […]

Design system components, recipes, and snowflakes

“When should we make something a component?” is a question I’ve been fielding for years. My strong answer: right from the start. Creating things with a component-based mindset right out the gate saves countless hours and wailing and gnashing of […]

Fear and Loathing in The United States of America

This is the first post I’ve ever written with the mindset of “I’m going to revisit this post 1, 5, 10, 20, 40 years down the road and either laugh or cry at how accurate or off the mark I […]

Slowly Falling In Love With Notion

This post is a long time coming. I’ve been using Notion since 2017, but it’s been a slow journey to get to a point where I can say that our relationship is official. Notion is now an invaluable tool for […]

2020

It’s difficult to put into words just how terrible 2020 has been. It’s been utterly devastating at a macro level, and at a personal level it’s proven to be the most brutal year of my life, shattering me physically, mentally, […]

Design System Interview Questions

Successful design systems are finely tuned to the organization they serve. At the beginning of every client design system engagement, we spend a great deal of time learning about our client’s culture, politics, products, tools, and workflows. Sure, we’ll get […]

Hobbies for the hell of it

I like playing music a lot. I love it, in fact. Playing music gives me an enormous amount of physical, mental, and spiritual satisfaction. I’m fortunate in that I get play music in some capacity every day, often starting my […]

Scattered Coronavirus Thoughts

I’m still processing this pandemic as I putter around my house and deep clean my kitchen. I’m pretty far away from being able to form fully coherent thoughts, so here’s some scattered thoughts that keep popping into my brain: For […]

Strange and Surreal Times

These are strange, surreal times. I hope everyone’s staying as healthy and safe as they can be out there. It’s really difficult to process the gravity of the coronavirus outbreak, especially since the situation keeps changing by the day (or […]

Sass !default and themeable design systems

I’m working on a couple themeable design systems right now, and we’re architecting components to offer a white list of themeable CSS properties, so each brand can define their design language using design tokens and then pipe those through into […]

Rolling Code Standards

Well-documented code guidelines and standards are absolutely critical for creating consistent, cohesive code together. Especially in the context of creating a design system’s component library, it’s crucial to establish consistent API and code conventions to create an excellent user developers’ […]

Deep Work Update #3

I just got a fantastic year-in-review breakdown from RescueTime that showed how I spent my (screen) time in 2019. It gave me some really insightful and beautiful data visualizations like this: Aside from the depressing realization that 30% of my […]

Switching to Firefox

I switched my default browser on both desktop and mobile to Firefox. It was incredibly painless to do and literally haven’t noticed anything different besides the UI. Reasons My reasons for switching? I’m not entirely sure to be honest. While […]

Design Systems, Agile, and Industrialization

Hoo boy, a blog post rebounding a blog post which rebounds a blog post. Let me jump on this train! Jeremy Keith clearly articulates a concern about design systems I often hear from many designers: In that light, design systems […]

Musicroll

Last night I had the pleasure of welcoming Ben Callahan and Rob Harr from Sparkbox over to my office/studio to hang out, talk shop, and play a little music. Ian and Melissa joined us and we had some fun jamming […]

Overcomplicatin’

Here are a few random stories from my last couple weeks of work. We have a datepicker field that has a calendar SVG icon sitting on top of the field. There was an issue where clicking the icon wasn’t triggering […]

3s and 7s by Queens of the Stone Age on Drums

I’m kicking off the new year trying to continue making things like I was attempting to do all of December. While I didn’t make something every day in December, but I made a lot of headway on projects and made […]

2019

2019 was thankfully lot different than last year. This time last year I was in the neuro ICU with my dad as he came out of a coma and was fighting off spinal meningitis. I’m so incredibly thankful he’s made […]

Making Things in December #19: Bad Girls by M.I.A. Drums

For day 19 of making something every day in December, I recorded myself playing drums along to Bad Girls by M.I.A. I really like playing drums along to other music, and Bad Girls by M.I.A. has long been a favorite […]

Making Things in December #18: Jamming with Melissa

For day 18 of making something every day in December, I recorded a late-night jam with Melissa. As with our other jams, there’s nothing planned and there are no expectations to make something that resembles a finished piece of music. […]

Making Things in December #17: Even More Cans

For day 17 of making something every day in December, I continued to work on a can art project. Once again, not much to look at, but I find the act of cutting and painting these cans to be really cathartic […]

Making Things in December #16: Another Jam with Ian

For day 16 of making something every day in December, I recorded another jam with Ian. Like the others, there’s nothing particularly special about this recording, but what is special is the deliberate act of playing and recording music. I […]

Making Things in December #15: More Cans

For day 15 of making something every day in December, I continued to work on a can art project. Still not much to look at right now, but a little bit of progress is still progress.   Making things in […]

Making Things in December #14: Cans

For day 14 of making something every day in December, I started an art project involving cutting and painting a bunch of aluminum cans. It doesn’t look like much right now: I’ve done some projects like this in the past, […]

Making Things in December #13: Cookie party!

For day 13 of making something every day in December, we went over to our friends Val and Jason‘s place for a Christmas cookie-decorating party! Val whipped up a ton of gingerbread and sugar cookies, which we then took and […]

Making things in December #12: Making progress on a song

For day 12 of making something every day in December, I made some progress on a song. Here are the results: This is a song that I’ve had around for a long while now, and while going through some stuff […]