Stack of old books on an empty table with a blank backdrop
Stack of old books on an empty table with a blank backdrop
Photo by Monika Sojčáková on Unsplash

What does STEM mean to you?

Programming? Development? Engineering? Chances are, one (or more) of the above. And, chances are, fiction books might not come to mind at all.

I work in STEM—UX to be precise—and I live for fiction. I spent four years as an English major in college, studying all sorts of literature by writers who have perfected the art of human understanding: Toni Morrison, Jane Austen, Junot Díaz, Ian McEwan, and more. I dreamed of living in the city and building a wordsmithing career in tech.

If you’re a current or aspiring techie, it’s easy to feel…

Multiple colorful balloons dangling from the ceiling
Multiple colorful balloons dangling from the ceiling
Photo by Adi Goldstein on Unsplash

On May 16, 2014, we welcomed PatternFly into the world. Since then, UX has never been the same.

Maybe you use PatternFly for your design and development. Or maybe you only read PatternFly’s Medium publication. Or maybe, you’re a contributor who has made PatternFly into the open source design system it is today.

No matter how you use PatternFly, we welcome you to join us in celebrating its sixth birthday. Let’s take a journey back in time and honor some of PatternFly’s milestones throughout the years.

Ready? Let’s go!

Becoming PatternFly

PatternFly wasn’t always the PatternFly we know today. In fact, it…

Group of people at the peak of a mountain during sunset
Group of people at the peak of a mountain during sunset
Photo by Natalie Pedigo on Unsplash

This year, DevConf.US will be a virtual experience, scheduled for September 23–25.

The PatternFly community believes everything is better in the open, especially UX. We’re not alone there, either. One of DevConf.US’s tracks this year is “user experience in open source.”

We’re getting ahead of ourselves though. Let’s take a step back and talk about DevConf.

DevConf: What it is and why it matters

DevConf is an annual technology conference for contributors to free and open source technologies. It’s sponsored by Red Hat, and 2020 will be its third U.S. event (DevConf.US).

Open source isn’t possible without teamwork and strong communities, so we’re thrilled that DevConf.US …

Two people at a table working on paperwork
Two people at a table working on paperwork
Photo by Gabrielle Henderson on Unsplash

As Flyers, we never get too comfortable in our work. While we make sure to celebrate wins, we also pour a lot of energy into continuous growth and development, especially in areas where we have potential to improve. That’s why we’re eager to share the results of a recent PatternFly audit by the Open Source Program Office (OSPO) at Red Hat.

The OSPO audits various Red Hat communities every year, making sure they’re all running smoothly and contributing positively to the open source community. …

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To our Flyers,

Hi, I’m Abi. I help run PatternFly’s Medium publication, and I just wanted to send a quick word to all of you who fly with us.

I started working with PatternFly in October 2019 — so about five months ago. In that short time frame, I’ve been blown away, time and time again, by the PatternFly community. All of your talent, smarts, and UX know-how is simply unparalleled. There are many ways to celebrate this, but I choose content.


Because content brings people together.

Back in school, I learned that storytelling is everywhere, ingrained into the…

Hands covered in paint, holding a pencil and a paintbrush
Hands covered in paint, holding a pencil and a paintbrush
Photo by Alice Dietrich on Unsplash

When you think of content, chances are GitHub isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. GitHub is primarily for developers, right?

Right. But developers need content, and GitHub can be great for that too.

Specifically, README files come in handy when exploring new projects and setting things up, as well as contributing code and sharing your work with the world.

PatternFly has various GitHub repos filled with README files. We recently decided to take on a rather ambitious initiative: to make those README files amazing.

In other words, we’re working on revamping PatternFly’s README documentation so that the content…

Open books on a flat surface
Open books on a flat surface
Photo by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash

Have you ever felt left out? Maybe you weren’t invited to a party. Or maybe you were the last person picked for a team.

We can all probably agree: Being left out feels awful.

You wouldn’t want to make someone else feel like that, would you? Of course not! But what if I told you that lots of people are excluded from using software products every day?

Luckily, we can fix this. That’s why accessibility is so important.

Quite a few people mistakenly believe that accessibility only applies to product design features like colors and sound. That’s actually not true…

black screen with colorful code
black screen with colorful code
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

In early 2019, the PatternFly team set a goal: Create developer training to teach PatternFly implementation best practices.

This was no easy feat. To provide the training we had in mind, we needed lots of people involved in this project: writers, editors, developers, and more. With everyone contributing their unique skills and experience, we were able to publish 19 developer tutorials: 5 HTML/CSS tutorials, 5 React tutorials, and 9 React chart tutorials. We’re also in the process of creating contribution guidelines, which are coming soon.

These interactive tutorials are geared toward both designers and developers. You can use them to…

A black pencil on a white background
A black pencil on a white background
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Think of the words you see on your computer screen. Like the welcome message when you log in to an online account. Or the little words of reassurance when you enter your email address into an online form: Don’t worry. We won’t share your info with anyone. It’s our secret.

Those words matter.

They affect how people think and feel when interacting with a product. They also have the power to guide users through a product, teach them how things work, and even encourage them to try out new tools. …

People talking at PatternFly event booth
People talking at PatternFly event booth

Progress. Growth. Freedom. Evolution. Knowledge. Influence.

All those words sound pretty good. And all those words depend on teamwork. That’s why open source is so powerful.

The software? Like, Linux?

Yes, but open source extends a lot further than software. It’s a mindset, a business model, and a culture.

Open source can look different depending on where and how it’s used, but one thing’s for sure: Transparency, inclusivity, adaptability, collaboration, and community make open source flourish.

Working the open source way

When people operate “in the open,” they share visions, ideas, thoughts, and insight. Diverse perspectives from diverse minds prevent anyone from hoarding knowledge or…

Abigael Donahue

Writer. Editor. Storyteller.

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