Chapter 5. Managing Design Systems

A good design system helps you improvise. Think of it like cooking: if you’ve done all the prep work ahead of time—chopped your vegetables, measured your spices—then you can start improvising as you assemble your ingredients.

Following this metaphor, your design system is your pantry, not your cookbook. You have space to create your own recipe, to add more garlic or less salt if you want to, but you won’t switch to an entirely different cuisine because you won’t have those ingredients.

How do you build a system people want to use? One that helps people improvise? That empowers but doesn’t constrain? If we ...

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