Export, Import, Interoperability, Libraries, Offline, Local

(1) I think it would be great to be able to export a spec out into a JSON format for other tools/libraries to be able to make use of.

(2) Additionally as a way of having local saved files of the system sketches. (SPEC format?)

(3) Or if a tool/library generated a new or modified an existing system sketch

(4) Having a library (available on NPM) to generate sketches

(5) Having a library to render sketches

(6) Service Workers (https://serviceworke.rs/) have good, wide browser support now, having an offline version of the web app would be great

(7) To be honest, I’d really, really, really love an Electron version of this tool

(8) Bonus points for an Electron app that can do stuff like interacting with other tools, e.g. import designs from Sketch

All in all, these are all ideas to make this a power tool. If you had all of these ideas, you’d have something truly impressive: I could get all my designers on board, I could build tools to make our lives easier, I could see myself and others using this.

This would be a step forward, like with https://spiritapp.io/ towards real, meaningful, tooling of a Design System.

Hey @Martin-Pitt—thanks for all the suggestions!

Before we build out too much, @kevin and I want to focus on teaching some of the core concepts (more videos and tutorials). We also want to get a better sense of how folks are using Sketch.systems and how it fits (or doesn’t) into the daily product design workflow.

On that note…

Is there anything in particular that’s missing right now for you to get your designers up and running making sketches?

I just wanted to throw in there that—for me—making sure that sketches are private and that accounts could be created with something other than Github would be super. Means of collaboration and better onboarding would also be beneficial.

We’d definitely like to add this feature down the road if enough folks are interested.

Is this just a factor of not having a Github account or something about Github in particular?

Can you expand on this a little more?

Collaboration: Co-editing a single sketch? Something else?
Onboarding: Is there something we’ve left out of the tutorials that would be helpful for you to get up and running?

Hi @Martin-Pitt. Re: #1, I’ve just added the ability to export specs to JSON for use with the xstate library and as EDN for use with datascript:


Take a look and let me know if that meets your use case.


Hey Ryan, apologies for the delay getting back to you bud. To elaborate:

Obviously I have a Github account personally, but if I was to bring this in to work it’s less likely that other users would have Github and so it’d be harder to get people to join up. I work at Sky Betting & Gaming so privacy is a big part of what we work on.

Collaboration: I mean being able to invite another user to edit my Sketch System directly without forking it first. Or, if they forked it, be able to merge it back into the ‘master’ (if you like) sketch.

Onboarding: I can’t remember exactly as this was early in the month, but I think I meant something that takes you through the process of sketching directly in the ‘app’ rather than having to leave to go to the tutorial pages and follow from there.

Got it. On-prem or own-cloud installs and multi-user editing open up a lot of questions (permissions, versioning, SSO, etc.), so it’s not something we have plans to tackle immediately.

If it’s something your team would be interested in custom commissioning for your workflow, though, drop me a note at ryan@generalreactives.com.

We talked about implementing more step-by-step/wizard style tutorials and I can definitely see the upsides. Thanks for the +1 on this, we’ll keep it in mind going forward.

I’m definitely interested in this feature.

I’m working on a project for my employer, so it needs to be private. Right now I have to manually copy-and-paste from a secret gist, which is time-consuming and makes sharing with other people on the team almost impossible.

Heads up — a brand new native file system is being experimented with for standardisation, this is super good for tons of tools out there, but I’m sure would be appreciated here as well: https://github.com/WICG/native-file-system

Also — I noticed that since the clipboard export functionality uses a text input, instead of a multi-line textarea or other alternative, that the newlines are stripped out from the JSON export. This requires re-formatting the pasted JSON, which is an annoyance to the user experience. Could this bug be fixed please?