Plasmic

A WYSIWYG web app builder

Tom • UI & UX, Around the Web, Tools & Development •

Show, don’t tell

One of the biggest disadvantages when it comes to implementing user interface elements is the lack of a powerful editor that allows the elements to be edited according to the WYSIWYG principle. As a programmer, it is often tedious to implement the visual aspects of an app. Since this can only be defined via code, a constant change between code and the local preview of the web app is necessary during programming.

It all comes down to looks

However, Plasmic changes that. Users can design the user interface directly in the Plasmic editor, with the editor taking care of creating the code in the background. As with other, similar apps such as Photoshop, visual elements can be adjusted directly with Plasmic.

However, designing the user interface is not enough: the UI created must also be able to interact with other components of the app. A simple example would be the design of a button that should perform a certain action when clicked.

Plasmic has also taken this important feature into account, without which a UI editor would simply not be usable for programmers. The created components can easily be used in the code and relevant sections can be overwritten.

Integrating integrations

The Plasmic Editor was built with Next.js in mind, therefore it allows you to create a complete Next.js app - static or dynamic - without ever touching the code. Of course this only applies for simple apps, but you get the idea: Plasmic is really powerful and might change the landscape of UI building for apps.

Quick iterations

The greatest benefit of editing your user interface while seeing the changes live in front of you is an insanely fast iteration cycle. Instead of having to switch between your code editor and your browser to see the changes, Plasmic harmonizes this workflow and allows you to quickly advance on your app’s visual design.

Ready to try?

Plasmic is currently free to try, so you can just give it a shot. How well the tool can scale for large and complex projects has to be seen, but I’m very intrigued by its current set of features! Whatever makes user interface design for programmers easier is a very welcome change. I’ll be following the progress of this project closely!

Tom

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