About

👋 I’m a product designer, podcaster, and writer, currently living in San Francisco.

Right now I’m designing native mobile apps at GitHub. Before GitHub, I co-founded Spectrum, a platform for large-scale communities to have better public conversations. Spectrum was acquired by GitHub in November, 2018.

Before Spectrum I designed payments experiences at Facebook, working across Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram. I originally cut my teeth as the first product designer at Buffer.

I also co-host the Design Details Podcast, a weekly conversation about design process and culture. Design Details is part of Spec.fm, a podcast network for designers and developers, which I co-founded in 2015.

You can find me on Twitter where I talk about design and development, or on GitHub where I’m building in the open, or on Figma where I’m exploring how plugins can automate the tedious parts of interface design.

Photo by @rxnjmmt

Writing

Thinking out loud about design, development, and building software.

Becoming a better interviewer

What I've learned from studying interviewing principles and analyzing the meta elements of my favorite interviewers.

Updated 3 weeks ago

My playbook for shipping side projects

Tips and strategies I've learned for shipping side projects.

Updated 4 weeks ago

Reasons You Aren't Updating Your Personal Site

Tips and strategies to painlessly manage a personal website.

Updated 1 month ago

2020 in review

Looking back on 2020 and setting goals for the next year.

Updated 1 month ago

Incrementally Correct Personal Websites

It's time to change the way I think about building and maintaining my personal website.

Updated 1 month ago

Projects

Weekend hacks for fun and learning.

App Dissection

In-depth explorations of visual and interaction design in well-known apps.

Bookmarks

Internet things, saved for later.

AMA

Ask me anything.

Hacker News

A better Hacker News.

Security Checklist

Tools and resources for staying safe on the internet.

My Stack

A curated list of my favorite tools and software.

Waves Phone Wallpapers

A custom-made set of 10 phone wallpapers, each with a unique color palette and design.

Design Details Podcast

A weekly conversation about design process and culture.

386: Designing with Grid Systems

This week, we talk about designing with grid systems. In particular: when grid systems break, and what to do when they don’t align with our hardware screens perfectly. In The Sidebar, we talk all about design debt: how to work with it, pay it down, and eventually learn to accept it.

Released 3 days ago

385: Raising Your Team’s UI Bar

This week, we talk about strategies and tactical tips for elevating a team’s bar to design high quality interfaces. In The Sidebar, we talk about how to transition from web to mobile design.

Released 1 week ago

384: Finding Time for North Star Design

This week, we talk about the real struggle of finding the time to do North Star design. It’s complicated! In The Sidebar, we try to find the digital equivalent of a Norman Door.

Released 2 weeks ago

383: Invisible Design

This week, we talk about “invisible design” – those products and experiences that go unnoticed when present, but would be immediately noticed if absent. In The Sidebar, we react to the new Tesla Model S refresh.

Released 3 weeks ago

382: Designing Phygital Experiences

This week, we talk about designing experiences that weave between meatspace and screens. In The Sidebar, Marshall gives a deep dive into using modifier keys to level up your Figma productivity.

Released 1 month ago

See all episodes →

Figma plugins

Making the design process less tedious.

Dominant Color Toolkit

Generate a palette from an image to magically populate your designs.

Responsify

Quickly test your designs across multiple device sizes.

iOS Export Settings

Applies the correct export settings for every required iOS App Icon size and density.

Export .zip

Easily export assets from Figma directly into a .zip file.

GitHub Data

Populate data from GitHub into Figma mocks

See my Figma profile →

Open source work

designdetails / designdetails

The code that powers Design Details.

brian-lovin-next

The code that powers this website you’re looking at.

withspectrum / spectrum

Simple, powerful online communities.

specfm / spec-next

A podcast network to help designers and developers level up.

Follow me on GitHub →

Speaking and interviews

Layout.fm: It Ran Into the Wall of Reality

I spoke with Kevin and Rafa about the Staff Design project, career ladders, imposter syndrome, and Paul Rudd.

Building for open source

Ryan Nystrom and I talk about designing and building the mobile apps at GitHub.

Extend what’s possible with Figma Plugins - Figma Config

An exploration into the plugins I built to automate the tedious parts of designing mobile apps at GitHub.

Designing with GraphQL - GraphQL Summit

Exploring the possibilities that open up when designers and developers can speak the same language.

Interface Lovers Interview

An interview about how I got into design, my process, and past work.

Charmander++ – Interviewing ourselves on Design Details

Bryn Jackson and I interviewed each other. Totally humble.

Avocode Interview

An interview where we dig into my work at Buffer, Facebook, Spectrum, and what’s in the works at GitHub.

Software Engineering Daily: GitHub Mobile

Ryan and I discuss how we designed and built the first version of GitHub’s mobile apps.