On Tue, May 14, 2019 at 11:36 AM Birkin Diana <[log in to unmask]>
> Inspired by a University web redesign, a few of us in the Library are
> beginning to investigate "pattern-libraries" to help us make and keep the
> look & feel of our disparate systems more in-sync with one another....
> To those of you that use, or have experimented with pattern-libraries, or
> something similar...
> - Are they used widely across the different library systems you have?
It's an institutional requirement for anything served from our
> - Do you as developers, designers, etc embrace their use? Chafe under
> perceived constraints?
Embrace the concept, but reality is messy. Three major issues: 1) Such
patterns are typically based on naive use cases that are totally out of
whack with services that actually do anything ; 2) Patterns assume what
systems can and cannot do as well as what the people working on them can
and cannot change. These assumptions are often spectacularly wrong; 3) Even
when (1) and (2) don't apply, patterns developed for on one system are very
nontrivial to implement on a system created for a different purpose which
is based on totally different technology stacks. Mimicking behaviors --
especially adaptive ones -- can be very nontrivial.
> - Are there "hierarchies" of adherence? i.e. do you try to 'mandate',
> say, the header & footer, while leaving other elements more customizable?
> Or does that unnecessarily invite chaos?
Ours are mandated and it dramatically reduces chaos. But sometimes the cure
is worse than the disease. Reminds me of a snake oil salesman's solution in
Tom Sawyer, "..Well, I’d been selling an article to take the tartar off the
teeth—and it does take it off, too, and generly the enamel along with
A related but different thing I'm curious about...
> Say you have some 'canonical Library elements', like a main Library header
> and footer.
This is controlled at the institution level. So the library gets the
institution elements down to having every element of the footer defined,
and so do the specialized services.
> The direct-point/load method makes it easier to disseminate updates across
> disparate systems.
The systems are so different in what they need to make things work and the
trend has been towards one of increasing complexity. This update issue is
only going to get worse for us.