Implementing a Pattern Library in the Real World: A Yahoo! Case Study (29 Apr 2005)
The pattern library allowed our small, centralized group to tap into the broad expertise of the Yahoo! design staff. What would have been impossible to write (authoritatively) by a small team is now being contributed to and reviewed by an expert staff. We were able to achieve this by understanding and agreeing on the problem, building a workflow that fit with the existing design process, generating buy-in by creating incentives for contributors, and by carefully designing and building an application with attention to user feedback.
We were then able to convert this library of patterns into a workable set of standards by agreeing on an appropriate rating scale and by assembling a representative group of reviewers who rate the content according to the same criteria.
Ultimately, we expect that pattern library will result in a strengthened Yahoo! brand and a more efficient design staff.
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