Oct 28, 2020

The infinite chapter

Sometimes writing takes you to strange places, as was the case writing chapter "2.2.1 Arguments against Atomic Design". I kept starting new sections, each time starting out with another argument why Atomic Design wasn't flawless and how there are many problems with it. Each time I ended up moving the section to another chapter after I'd finished discussing that particular problem and realised it wasn't a problem with Atomic Design.

In the end, I found a few arguments against using Atomic Design, but what once looked like it may become a long chapter now is barely two pages. I've since moved on to "2.2.2 Arguments for Atomic Design", a chapter I should be able to quickly jot down, but one that eludes me. I've started writing this chapter more often than I can count and deleted it again. There are many reasons why you should use Atomic Design for your design system, but which of them should I put into a bachelors thesis written for the target audience: designer? I'm not sure yet.

The good thing is, as these chapters turn out to be infinite wells of text, the rest of the thesis is growing while I'm writing them. The bad thing, snippets like the one below end up homeless and I have no place to put them:


Fun fact, there is no truly accurate translation for the German word "Ordnung" into the English language. There are entire articles attempting to outline what this word means1. The problem is, I could really use this word to explain why Atomic Design sometimes fails.

Ordnung translates to several English words, amongst them are tidiness, system, organisation, routine, and order. Yet none of those truly represent the meaning of this word. Sometimes when trying to describe a word it is helpful to name the opposite of it, in the case of Ordnung the opposite is chaos.

Ordnung means people don't j-walk, not because you shouldn't but because one shan't. It means you don't drive without a driver's license, not because it's illegal (it is), but simply because it mustn't be done. It means you separate your trash into paper, other recycling, brown glass, white glass, non-recyclable, and many more categories before disposing of it properly. Not because you care about the environment or because you have to (you don't), but you do it – it must be this way. This spirit or mindset of doing things you might not want to do but that are generally useful to you, your surroundings, or society, in general, can be surmised as Ordnung.

Rolling To Do

  • Problem Analysis [done]
  • Problem Definition [done]
  • Persona's [done]
  • Find a solution to the problem [done]
  • Written part: How I solved the problem [in progress]
  • Solution Content Writing
  • Solution Design [in progress]
  • Written part: The Solution
  • Design thesis paper
  • Design final presentation
  • Create a video trailer thesis
  • Document user stories and personas [in progress]

Until next time, take care!

1: The BBC: What makes Germany so orderly?