It’s an honor to be referenced at Figma’s Config keynote and follow-up article AI: The Next Chapter in Design

I like how Figma used the atomic design methodology to articulate where AI might prove to be most useful. Lower-level atoms and molecules might be boring, but they serve as the foundational structures that can be assembled in millions of ways at the relatively-complex organism, template, and page levels. It’s at that more complex level that AI might be able to help designers imagine many different concepts or executions.

I agree with my pal Dan Mall here that the machines can help us splat out slews of designs, because it’s good at that stuff:

Because I’m human, I’m not as good at coming up with the quantity of ideas that a computer can in the same amount of time. Where it often takes me hours or days to draw 100 different logos, Midjourney can do that in a matter of minutes.

But it still requires human discretion and decision-making (and don’t forget that important moral compass!) in order to separate the wheat from the chaff.

There’s lots more to say about this whole AI-driven world, and I was recently asked a question on this topic at Front Conference. In my view, so many of the conversations, predictions, and anxieties around AI are very reactive, myopic, and short-sighted. I’m presently trying to zoom way the hell out from any specifics of the AI world and am instead trying to stay focused on the bigger picture. What are we doing here? What are we trying to accomplish? What are our values? What do we collectively care about? What could go wrong? Any conversation around AI (or anything really!) should be guided by the answers to those questions.