Designing for the future

Tangity
4 min readSep 22, 2023

“Anyone who fights for the future, lives in it today”
Ayn Rand

Written by Fernando Magan

Illustration by Ozcar Aguilar

Creating future-proof digital products can be challenging given the rapid pace of technological change. However, there are some strategies you can adopt to increase the longevity and sustainability of your digital products.

Here are some tips:

  1. Stay informed about emerging technologies: Keep an eye on the latest advancements in technology and identify trends that have the potential to impact your product. By staying informed, you can anticipate changes and plan for them.
  2. Design for flexibility: Ensure that your product is built to accommodate changes and updates. Create a flexible architecture that can easily adapt to new features, functions, and integrations.
  3. Focus on scalability: Plan for growth by creating a scalable product architecture that can handle an increasing number of users, transactions, and data. This will help your product continue to function effectively as your user base grows.
  4. Embrace modularity: Create your product with a modular design, allowing components to be easily swapped or upgraded. This will allow you to replace outdated or inefficient parts of the product as new technology emerges.
  5. Ensure compatibility: Make sure your product is compatible with existing and emerging technologies. This will ensure that it can be used with a wide range of devices and software.
  6. Plan for maintenance: Create a maintenance plan to keep your product up-to-date and secure. This includes regularly updating software, monitoring for security vulnerabilities, and addressing any issues that arise.

As digital products continue to evolve and become more complex, design systems will play an increasingly critical role in ensuring consistency, efficiency, and scalability in the design process. Here are some potential developments that we could see in the future of design systems:

  1. Increased automation: As AI and machine learning continue to advance, design systems may incorporate more automated tools to speed up the design process and reduce the need for manual labor.
  2. Integration with development: Design systems may become more closely integrated with development workflows, allowing designers and developers to work more closely together and creating a more seamless process from design to deployment.
  3. Cross-platform compatibility: As digital products are increasingly used across multiple platforms, design systems may need to be more adaptable to work across different devices, operating systems, and screen sizes.
  4. Improved accessibility: Design systems may need to incorporate more accessibility features to ensure that products are usable by everyone, regardless of their abilities or disabilities.
  5. Enhanced collaboration: Design systems may become more collaborative, enabling teams to work together more efficiently and effectively, whether they are in the same location or working remotely.

As technology evolves, it’s important to assess whether your design system is still effective and whether changes need to be made to keep up with new trends and emerging technologies. While it’s true that some changes in technology may require significant changes to the user interface, a well-designed and adaptable design system can help streamline the process of making those changes. By having a consistent set of design patterns and guidelines, designers can more easily adapt to changes in technology while maintaining a consistent user experience across different platforms and devices.

In addition, a design system can provide a framework for exploring and testing new design ideas and prototypes. By having a solid foundation to work from, designers can more easily experiment with new design concepts and iterate on their designs, while still maintaining a consistent user experience.

A design system could also provide value for a voice interface:

  1. Include VUI design patterns and guidelines to ensure consistency in voice interactions, such as the tone of voice, phrasing, and pacing. These patterns can help users understand and navigate the interface more easily, and reduce confusion and frustration.
  2. Ensure that the brand’s messaging and voice is consistent across all interactions, whether visual or voice-based. This can help build trust with users and create a more cohesive user experience.
  3. Accessibility considerations for voice interfaces, such as providing alternative ways for users to interact with the interface (e.g. touch or text input), and ensuring that the interface is designed in a way that is easy to understand and use for users with different abilities.
  4. A design system can also provide guidelines for integrating voice interactions with other technologies, such as chatbots or augmented reality. This can help create a more seamless user experience across different platforms and devices.

On the other hand, artificial intelligence language models don’t have a traditional user interface that requires a design system. However, the companies behind use a design system to maintain consistency across their digital products and platforms, including a library of reusable components, design patterns, and guidelines that help ensure consistency in their products.

Overall, design systems will continue to play a crucial role in creating digital products that are efficient, consistent, and user-friendly.

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Tangity

We are a global network of design studios, enabling positive impact through tangible and intuitive solutions. We humanize complexity. Website → tangity.design