Writing Code with Designers

When working on side projects, usually you wear all of the hats. Sysadmin, developer, designer, marketing, etc. You have to do all of them, and presumably you do one or two of them well, and the others well enough to get by. Working at the Journal World has been the first time that I have worked with real designers, and it has been a learning experience.

I think it would be interesting to see a talk or a panel at Djangocon this upcoming year about how to write code with designers. There are a lot of little things that allow them to work with your code better. A couple things that I can think of off the top of my head are:

  • How to structure data for templates

  • How to write templates that are easy to mark up, with the least amount of effort

  • Writing good template tags and filters

I think that there is also a design process, where it really helps if you include the designer in the process of scheming functionality. I really find that designers have a better handle on asking the ‘what does the user do here?’ and ‘what does this actually accomplish?’ questions. Working with them on projects is a really interesting difference than working by yourself on things.

Do you have designers that you work with, and does it help your program design? Do you just have other programmers to bounce ideas of off? Does it work in a similar way?

I find that this workflow is really beneficial to all involved. It is the first time I have had the luxury of it, and was wondering if other people have this process as well.

Hey there! I'm Eric and I work on communities in the world of software documentation. Feel free to email me if you have comments on this post!