Product teams from AirBnb and New York Times to Shopify and Artsy (among many others) are converging on a new set of best practices and technologies for building the web apps that their businesses depend on. This trend reflects core principles and solve underlying problems that we may share, so it is worth digging deeper.
Some of that includes:
- Visual consistency: Presented as a design system (not to be confused with a pattern library or style guide) often built with libraries like styled-components and tools like Storybook.
- Internal consistency: Created with static typing tools like TypeScript.
- Data manipulation: These work with GraphQL-speaking clients like Apollo.
- Data representation: Displayed with a library for reusable components and behaviors, like React.
Naming things is hard, and our industry has struggled to name this new generation of tooling for web apps. The inimitable Orta Theroux calls it an Omakase; I slimmed it down and opted for a simpler backronym pulled from letters in the tooling outlined above: STAR (Design Systems, TypeScript, Apollo, and React).