Wix team

Transcript from Thursday January 19th, 2023

Wix Team: Tom Raviv, Omer Kenet, Peter Shershov

Carl Vitullo: Welcome to our latest episode of Reactiflux Office Hours! I'm joined today by three team members from Wix, talking about the evolution of web development, the golden age of frontend that we're in right now and talking about their experiences navigating the tech industry. [00:00:17]

The three of them each have very different entrances into the tech industry. I thought it'd be fun to have everyone compare and contrast, talk about their journeys. [00:00:26]

Joining me is Tom Raviv the head of developer relations and Team lead for stylable.io. [00:00:30]

Omar Kenet, head of product for Codux. [00:00:32]

Peter Shershov, the engineering team lead. [00:00:35]

And in the #q-and-a channel, we've got Joshua, one of the developer relations people [00:00:40]

Wix Team: Hey guys. Hey guys. How's it going? [00:00:43]

Carl Vitullo: yeah. The joining us partly in celebration of the recent beta release they have for Codux. But before we get into it Tom, do you want to start us off and introduce yourself? [00:00:55]

Wix Team: Oh, for sure thing. Sure thing. My pleasure. So my name is Tom Raviv. I originally started my career doing technical trainings for telecom companies and all sorts of legacy systems. From there I transitioned to Wix where I've been for the. Almost close to 10 years now. I started off as a script kiddy programming position, working on some applications for our internal frameworks and some very old systems at Wix at this point. [00:01:20]

Then got my bearings there. Learned a lot about programming, about working in a company, working in a team, working with other developers and other stakeholders. Then I did a bit of a switch went and helped to found the Wix Academy, which is an internal group within Wix that does. [00:01:37]

Developer onboarding trainings, boot camps progression courses and tracks for their developers later in their careers, as well as all sorts of activities that relate to community and engineering branding. So we organized the conference called you Gotta Love Frontend for a number of years as well as some meetups and all sorts of community activities. [00:01:58]

Did that for about two years at Wix and for the last six or so I've been with the group that I am now the group working on Codux and on Stylable. Started as a developer on Stylable, turned into a team lead and very recently took up the reins on developer relations for the group. [00:02:15]

Carl Vitullo: Very nice. Wow, that is, that's a long resume. [00:02:17]

Wix Team: It's been a really interesting ride at Wix. Yeah, and I think that's about me. Omer, you wanna take take next. [00:02:23]

Yes, I will. Hi. Hi, everyone. I'm Omer Kenet. I lead the product of Codux so it's a super fun time for me, obviously. Yeah, so I've joined Ws four years ago, so not as much as Tom, but quite a lot as well. [00:02:35]

I've joined after founding my own startup in very similar areas. We've been working on frontend toolings and code editing visually in several ways in my startup translating design files to code as well. A lot of connection between what I did before and what I'm doing now in my team, in in Wix. [00:02:55]

Yeah, it's a really great ride been going on for a lot of time now in this environment, yeah it's me. Peter yes. Hi. Hi I'm Peter. I'm also for four years already at Ws team lead of engineering. I started as designer 10 years ago actually on ads and I call it web apps as well at mainly on like ads and stuff like that. [00:03:17]

And after that add into coding html, js and actually angular at first after that react and type script as of now. And that's about it. Yeah, that's about me. [00:03:30]

Carl Vitullo: Very nice. Yeah. I'm curious to talk more about how you transitioned from design to software engineering. But yeah, before we get too deep into it Tom, I do you want to kick us off here talking about Wix and how they. Some of their origins and how they've evolved through the years. [00:03:47]

I know that they're one of the early sort of d do-it-yourself website builders. Does that, is that still how Wix thinks about itself? [00:03:54]

Wix Team: It's changed and it's progressed and it's definitely grown in scope over the years. Wix got its start back in the flash days. It's first, it's very first visual editor for website creations was based entirely on flash. And you could do all sorts of crazy things. You could have bats flying across your applications and you could do all sorts of timeline connected, interactive experiences. [00:04:16]

But flash went away and we had to find things to work with in its place. HTML five was definitely the way to go, the way the industry and the web were was moving to. So Ws did that and then, still stuck to that early idea of do it yourself, create your website for your event or for your small business or for your own personal use. [00:04:37]

But as time progressed and as Wix grew both in user count, but also in employee count the range of audiences and the breadth of capabilities that we were looking to offer really grew. When I joined Wix, I was like, employee number 500 or something. I think right now it's about 6,000 or 7,000. [00:04:59]

So that posed a lot of really interesting challenges in how do you scale that much but also how can you take a product like Wix and find. New audiences for it, find new use cases for it. And for Wix, that was developers and designers, and finding offerings that can fit in this entire spectrum of very simple, no nonsense kind of users that are only looking to do something visually. [00:05:25]

But on the other side of that, to something that's more complex and can really support larger businesses, larger needs more complex cases. [00:05:33]

Carl Vitullo: Sure. Wow. So you said earlier that you've been working at Wix for 10 years, but you were still employee number 500 you said. [00:05:41]

Wix Team: Yeah. Yeah, thereabouts. I think Wix was founded around 2008 maybe. So something like that, give or take a year. I joined around 2013. [00:05:50]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah. Wow. So it's already a mature business and you know here now al it is almost three times older is when you had joined. That's that's incredible. [00:06:01]

Wix Team: Yeah, but it's still, despite the growth and the increase of headcount and capacity, it's still very much kept. It's roots and it's startup spirit. And this sort of can-do attitude where everyone can really find their niche, find their spot, and take ownership of what they want. [00:06:19]

Carl Vitullo: Nice. Very cool. Yeah. So, And you said you. Came at this sort of, from a script kiddy background. What's been your experience from that hacker ethos into a large company and staying with Alar one large company for such a long period of time in your career? Yeah, I think that's pretty uncommon in the industry. [00:06:38]

How has that experience been? [00:06:39]

Wix Team: I've it's funny, I've listened to several of your previous episodes and it seems like there's a somewhat of a recurring theme where I got my first kind of chops in programming through gaming. Back when I was a kid all sorts of games would let you expand, program, add script, do all sorts of things. [00:06:55]

The communities were on IRC or other sort of networking environments of that sort. And it's where I started to dabble and try out different things. Only when I got to Wix, it actually transitioned into this real thing, a job where you actually learn and are expected, to perform and to deliver. [00:07:15]

But really I had amazing mentors and amazing people who I could draw both knowledge and inspiration from in terms of where I want to take my career and where I want to take, where, what I wanna do in the future. And I think that's really part of the reason why I've been with Wix for so long. [00:07:32]

It feels like I've found home [00:07:34]

Carl Vitullo: That's fun. That's really nice. That's a good feeling to have. Yeah. And if you've been there 10 years, I would, I'd hope it still feels, hope it still feels good. [00:07:43]

Wix Team: Definitely. Definitely. [00:07:45]

Carl Vitullo: yeah. I'd love to hear some more about what, how long has Wix been using React? [00:07:50]

Wix Team: And as I mentioned we started off with the Flash, then we transitioned to the HTML five. That was not React, re React was not around at that time yet. I think it was more based on MO tools and an internal framework that, that we had created at the time. But then around 2015, was it, right? [00:08:08]

Yeah. Yeah. So 2015 Wix started to explore new frameworks, new avenues, new tools that we can utilize. The web was, has started to pick up the speed and how things were being released. What capabilities were available to developers. And we went fully on board with that. React has served us very well over these last past years. [00:08:31]

And I think that's part of the reason why we've also based Codux around it. True, yes. Totally agree. [00:08:39]

Carl Vitullo: Nice. Yeah. And Peter, you said that you had. Work with Angular as well. Is there, I see a question in the chat. Is there a professional reason or personal preference? [00:08:48]

Wix Team: Hello. I was working in startup company that actually used it in the product like ler Gs actually first one. And yeah, had to learn it, was tough and also interesting that as like a starter project to me still. Yeah. I think that's what's up. I think back when it first came out, angular, it was really quite a breath of fresh air. [00:09:14]

It was trying to do something that, not necessarily anything. Similar to it has done the binding. The binding. Yeah. The, yeah. Two-way binding was like, oh my God, it changed everything. But also a framework that kind of covered you from end to end and really tried to provide a localization yeah. [00:09:35]

Routing as well. The whole thing.. Yeah. I loved it. And at first, and then I realized how how to say, huge it is. And maybe you don't need all the parts. Exactly. Yeah. The binding is it's amazing, but also, perhaps not worth it. Yeah. maybe. Maybe. [00:09:53]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, for sure. Yeah, definitely Angular one, and I guess, react was competing with Angular one back in the day too. But I think that it came from a different era of the web where, maybe a little bit more framework focused, things like Laravee or Rubian rails that really did try to do everything all in one. [00:10:11]

And I think React was really a step in a different direction of saying and now it's that the reacts vision of being a low level platform upon which other things are built. I feel like that's, coming true now with tools like Remix or next, but yeah, I guess the, maybe that's a direction of poke. [00:10:27]

What's how are you thinking about things, products like Wix or like Codux in this, in the current, reality for the web ecosystem? [00:10:35]

Wix Team: Next.js You mean and Remix frameworks, like how we approach that? [00:10:42]

I think it's, first of all, it's, at the end of the day, it's what gets the job done, right? If you have a tool that covers your needs and is easy to use, will performs well in whatever metrics you care about, whether it's like things like actual performance in loading or if it's features or device support, or like new APIs. [00:11:03]

If you have something that kind of covers all of the bases you need, I'm all for it. If it's ring mix or if it's Next or if it's Wix it's okay. Use the thing that. Having said that, supporting things like Next and Remix and things that really bring a lot of tooling with them, a lot of integrations, a lot of thought and perhaps opinions on how things should be done poses a somewhat of a challenge for us. [00:11:26]

On the other side to, to create a system that's agnostic to, like all of these opinions and needs components are components in the end. If it has span other components in it we'll render it in the end. Regardless of routing assets and stuff like that. Yeah. [00:11:43]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, for sure. Yeah. And I see that we've had a lot of new people join in the last couple of minutes. So let me just reintroduce I'm here with three team members from Wix. They are, they're celebrating a beta release of their new product, Codux. But we're also just here talking about the tech industry, how we've, how we got our starts. [00:12:00]

And just talking about the web. But yeah, I'm here with Tom Riviv, the head of developer relations and a team lead for their open source project stylable. Omar Kenet, head of product for Codux's recent beta release. And Peter Shershov, the engineering team lead. And we've got Josh, username, Alphonse helping out in the #q-and-a chat. [00:12:18]

One of the topics we had queued up here was the golden age of frontend development. Do you think that's now, do you think that was a different time? [00:12:26]

Wix Team: Oh, I think it's very much now, I think it started about. For luckily for me, about a decade ago there was some time where I feel like the web was in stagnation. There are all sorts of stories about ECMAScript for and how that got stuck in the pipeline. And there are all sorts of tales from like the CSS working group on how hard it was to create new capabilities like flex or grid and actually ship those to, to users. [00:12:55]

But things have changed and really the speed at which things, but, and by things APIs, tools, browser capabilities, all of those, even the language itself, if we're talking about Equi script six and everything that has come since it's. It's mad, it's great, it's wonderful. It does and can cause some fatigue because it's hard to keep up with the pace of everything that's going on. [00:13:21]

And you're almo like almost always in this situation where you're thinking, am I using the right tool? Maybe there's a new shinier one. Maybe there's a faster one. And running after that all the time is a bit tiresome. FOBO, and lots of people have talked about that issue and have offered various ways of dealing with it. [00:13:40]

But I think at the end of the day the proliferation of tools and capabilities on the web is fantastic and really helps drive forward everything that, that we can do as developers and the things that we can offer to our users no matter in, in what, like domain or area. And I guess like the fatigue is always better than not having enough options, oh, definitely [00:14:02]

Yeah. [00:14:03]

Carl Vitullo: for sure. Definitely a lot to keep on top of, but it's a, it's evidence of the boom times we're in that we have so much to stay on top of. [00:14:10]

Wix Team: And I think that like there, there's also been. Beyond just more things being added. There's been a lot of change in the mindset of how you approach things. If you look at it from like the 10,000 mile view we've moved from document-based development to component oriented development. [00:14:29]

And that's a very different experience. I think it really lends itself to scale, to growth, to even just for onboarding purposes, for learning pur purposes, getting people into very complex systems or very complex apps is, in my experience, a lot easier when you're talking about components than when you're talking about very dom oriented kind of development [00:14:57]

Carl Vitullo: Sure. Yeah. Yeah. And I think you know the audience here, react developers will be intuitively familiar with component-based development, but I'm not sure I have a clear picture in my mind when you say document-based development. Yeah. Could you, can you go into that? Can you dig deeper? What is document-based development? [00:15:15]

Wix Team: By document, of course, like the window document, in the browser. The dom. Yeah, the dom. And things like JQuery, where, a decade, 15 years ago, you had to use it because browsers were so out sync with each other. APIs were so lacking in what you could do, and third party libraries stepped up and tried to provide like the best that they could. [00:15:36]

And it was awesome. And really helped push the web forward. But at the end of at some point the browsers cut up, a lot of the functionalities moved in, and then the third parties could. Transition over to doing things that are like more about architecture and more about how you actually structure a complex thing. [00:15:55]

From like the beginning of the tool that you're using or the beginning of the language that you're using or components and your right. We saw it in in inquiry in the j query, the head UI as well, components. So it's like changing into other aspects as well. Yeah. [00:16:12]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, definitely. I think one of the big challenges that I remember from the document-based era of development was everything applied everywhere, so it was, you had, you just had to be so careful about what class names you used, what selectors you used. And that's, that is still a concern now. But we do have a lot more tools that help us keep scope narrow, [00:16:34]

Wix Team: Oh, definitely, even Stylable tries to keep you safe in whatever way it can, it will name, space, everything in CSS that could possibly collide. Whether you're talking about classes, variables container queries, layers you gotta namespace things these days because the browser is a big place and global scope is dangerous. [00:16:53]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, global scope gets messy quickly, for sure. Yeah. So all three of you have been working on on Codux or in a similar, problem space for a number of years now. What does it, how does it feel being a developer serving other developers? [00:17:09]

Big question. [00:17:10]

Wix Team: It's a great question. One that, I don't know, you could probably write a thesis about, I think like the first thing is that, You're both the developer and the user. So that means that on the one hand you have a lot of inherent knowledge about the domain. [00:17:26]

If, for example, you're a developer working for a medical company or for, I dunno, car insurance or something like that, you learn the domain in to, to, to a certain aspect or the things that you need, but you'll never be like as knowledgeable as a doctor or a surgeon or whatever. With developers, when you're writing for developers, especially if they're the users are using the same stacks the same technology stack and tools that we do then we do know a lot of what they know. [00:17:53]

And we do share a lot of their pain points or their successes or their approaches. But on the other hand, we also bring our biases. So if we have oh man, I don't like angular, I don't jQuery, I don't like from my own personal taste, then that will all of a sudden be reflected in that as well. [00:18:13]

And it's hard to balance that app. Yeah, I guess from my perspective as a product, working with the developers, building tools for developers, I get a bit of both, like the upside and downside. Like you have all of this knowledge right in front of you and people who are very deep into those concepts that you can learn from and shape the product based on what these people think and know and do. [00:18:37]

And yet, as you said, the bias part is always a challenge. People like what they like and many times really don't like what they don't like. And you need to play around with it and make sure that that you're getting what you need to get and put your filters on what are people's personal preferences and not like what's a common ground or what should be like the right approach I guess. [00:18:58]

So that's a lot of challenge for me. Really cool though. I think we're, at the end of the day, all of us are very passionate about what we do. And that can sometimes also be translated to like high energy interactions college athlete. We're, Al might come with a suggestion for a feature or a change to, to some aspect of the product. [00:19:21]

And we'll be looking at that and thinking and saying, no, this is terrible. You don't know what you're doing. But he does know what he's doing. Like he's been looking at the range of developers as an audience, as a group. And that's something that while we occasionally think about, it's not something that we necessarily have that much of a grasp on compared to him. [00:19:43]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, it's easy to think I'm a developer. I'm our target customer. I intuitively know what other developers will want, that is still at the end of the day, anecdotal, it's your own preferences. And yeah, definitely easy to let that get in the way of, just as over time, you, if you don't continually update your perspective of, developers, not just what you want as a developer, you risk becoming increasingly out of touch, I think that's maybe a restatement of what you're saying. [00:20:13]

Wix Team: Yeah. Yeah. It is though a lot of fun, I have to say, because we work together in very early stages of shaping the changes and the product. Like it's not just talking about implementation. It's also like from day one. Discussions about what should we do, how should we do it? [00:20:29]

Like I'm talking both with the people who will implement the product and yet people who are so deep into the pain that we're trying to solve. The whole planning and figuring out what would be a right solution or Right. Even what should we solve? So it's all very early stage done together and that's a real good fun I think for all of us working together. [00:20:49]

Oh, definitely. Yeah. I agree. If you hear the product manager on the team lead of the engineering, we have our conflicts and our disagreements still in the end of it. It's our product is interesting a lot. And yeah, it's true. I think like an, another interesting aspect of that would be that, Codux as a product like it's very much. Primarily targeted for developers. And we're using Codux to build Codux. [00:21:13]

So even in that place when we're just developing the thing itself, we're both the users and the creators of it. And to a certain ex as extent, the same thing could be said about our designers as well and about the product managers as well. The they're building it, they're creating the specs. [00:21:30]

They're planning out the product, they're doing the research that's required, but then they also use it so they get this k you get this kind of immediate loop of dog fooding your own product. And I think it teaches you so much about what you can do, what you should. [00:21:43]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, definitely. I know you actually using your own product is, it's the core of every product businesses, anytime someone gives advice to a product-based business, number one on that list tends to be actually use your product, understand how it works. So yeah, that's really, it's really cool that you have bootstrapped this, bootstrapped Codux into a place where you can use Codux to develop Codux. [00:22:09]

That's [00:22:09]

Wix Team: it's a testament of its capabilities. Like we're saying that you can use this to create complex apps, complex component, complex sites or whatever you want. And if you couldn't build Codux using it, then we've probably missed a Mark [00:22:26]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, makes a lot of sense. [00:22:28]

Wix Team: No, I was just trying to say like it is like someone who would look at it from the side would be confused. many times. Like you could see us editing this visual thing, like this panel or something, and yet using the same panel to edit the next version of that panel. So you could look at it from the side and be like, wait, what am I seeing here? [00:22:48]

So for us it's like really an interesting approach and I did have the same experience with my previous startup. So it's so cool to, to see people like, figure out that this is what we're doing. It's oh my God, this is mind blowing and yet so confusing at the same time. definitely a bit trippy. [00:23:04]

Carl Vitullo: Very neat. Yeah. Yeah. Oer. So you said that you were, before you started working at Wix, you were building your own startup in the same problem domain. Is that right? [00:23:17]

Wix Team: Yep. Yeah. It was very similar in many ways. Very different in other ways. But yeah, it was like on the same problem space. We know that we're dealing with a problem that like the entire industry could feel every day, probably. So the startup had a different approach of how should we tackle frontend and collaboration and kind of heat up the process, improve our workflows. [00:23:40]

We were focused on translating design files into code. We had full on editor to create whatever you wanted to do with your website once it was converted from the design file, either Figma sketch, Photoshop those were days that were still used for ui. And yeah obviously sharing the same kind of vision towards How the future of web should look and how the future of frontend should look. [00:24:02]

That's what got us to Wix, I believe. [00:24:09]

sorry. We've also talked about like the range of users that, that a complete like Wix might expect to, to support or want to support from the very basic beginner level all the way to the most pro of pros the experts that do everything right down on, on the metal itself close to the core of the system. [00:24:27]

But even if you look like at the group of developers as an audience, even that's not a single thing, right? You have developers that are at the beginning of their career and you have developers that are much later and much more experienced, and those types of users really expect a different sort of experience. [00:24:45]

The beginners would need more handholding. They'll need things to be more verbose, whether we're talking about actual text in, in the product, in tutorials, in documentation and so on. But also like in how the product itself is shaped. Beginner use, like beginner level users might need buttons that are label labeled a certain way or certain actions that are exposed in a clear way. [00:25:10]

But this might come at the expense of being professional that works with a thousand keyboard shortcuts and can zoom all over the place and do things with 17 heat strokes and they're done. So there's a tug of war of balancing those two groups and finding where you can provide the optimal experience for both audiences and how they can fit it or adapt it or configure it to their needs. [00:25:33]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah. Very neat. Yeah. So Omar, how long had you been building that startup before you joined Wix? [00:25:39]

Wix Team: So I guess it depends on how you would look at it. We had a previous round to that startup, the same founding team and team members working on something completely different from our last startup called Rapid ui. started with something called Gono Go. It's really not in the industry, but it taught us a lot about the pain and drove us to, to the place where we wanted to solve it. [00:26:01]

We realized that there's a much bigger pain here that we can deal with such a bigger. Issue that we want to put our focus in. And we're so motivated to try and solve all of those things that we could feel on our own. And we did a complete pivot. We changed everything. We, even though we were doing pretty well, I have to say especially in terms of like early stage startup we just realized that it's a much bigger thing to, to handle and we completely transitioned to Rapid ui. [00:26:29]

Working on Rapid ui, I guess it was like around four years almost. We had users paying money for the product, getting value out of it. Obviously because of that we were got funded so we're doing pretty well a long time about that. So got very deep into the, those problems based, I think the first times we met like that when your company and our company met it was very. [00:26:53]

Immediately evident that there's a common language there. We were looking at the developer groups and developer experiences in much the same way and trying to solve a lot of the same issues, but in slightly different ways. Yeah, I and it was true both on professional aspect and like the personal aspect at the same time. [00:27:11]

Like we had a click from day one, I believe. All of us could feel it. And yeah, like the professional aspect we're working on such similar problems like technical problems editing code in, in many ways. And yet providing a way to write code freely. So there's always this kinda mix between the freedom that you want to give and both the startup and Codux give ultimate freedom. [00:27:35]

Like you're not, you were not, and you're still not limited in any way. And yet at the same time comes back to what Tom said earlier. How do you wrap these things with great experience? How do you make sure that you can cater different kinds of users and yet still allow the ultimate freedom? [00:27:51]

So both products had these similar problems and I think that both sides could really feel the value of being deep in those problems. Like we joined the company and it didn't take long or took very little time before we could start actually doing things, make changes, improve, I hope [00:28:08]

Yeah, it taught us a lot and we started so fast in weeks in our team because it was just like so aligned. Oh yeah. We like, had a common language immediately. It was just like jumping straight into the water and getting stuff done. [00:28:21]

Carl Vitullo: Very neat. Okay, so it sounds, so you worked at, worked on rapid. For about four years before you joined the Wix team, and you've been now been working at Wix for eight, four years as well, you said? [00:28:34]

Wix Team: That's true. [00:28:36]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah. Very cool. Wow. So eight years working in the same problem space. That's incredible. [00:28:41]

Wix Team: Yeah. Yeah. When you have the passion for that thing, doesn't feel like eight, like it feels from one hand, 80 and yet from the other it's like I can do it a lot longer. Every day there's a new challenge and usually challenges that I like tackling. So yeah, we like editors, what's up? [00:29:00]

Oh yeah. The, The UI experiences. [00:29:02]

Carl Vitullo: Very nice. Yeah. There you go. I'm trying to imagine what it might have been like to go from a small startup that, or I'm assuming small, but a startup that you're running yourself to being, it sounds like a acquired and joining, so like an aquire situation. What was that experience of going from, totally self-directed startup you founded to someone who works for a thousand, multiple thousands person company? [00:29:29]

Wix Team: Oh, wow. That was a big big day. a big change. Obviously it's, in one hand it's very different. Yeah, it was a small startup. You said it right? We were like seven people or eight. When maybe a bit more by that time, but very small. And I was like one of the founding members it was like, it was my thing. [00:29:47]

I joined a very special team. The company. Even though I guess regardless to the team, Wix is a very special company in general. We touched it a bit, but I know that throughout the entire organization people feel like they're part of this big thing and they can contribute to that big thing even though they're like thousands employees that, that do it. [00:30:06]

And especially in our team I would say that we are working as if we're a startup, right? We're working on new things, trying to find new technologies to solve problems for people. So we are very oriented to think as a startup. So it wasn't as extreme as we thought it would be very different in many ways, like day to day and all of that different organization, how it manages throughout the day to day. [00:30:31]

And yet at the same time, whips is such a great company to work for in so many ways. That just gives you the feeling that you're a lead role in this big thing. And I know that almost everyone in the company feel that way. So yeah you're not just a cog in the machine. You make an impact. [00:30:50]

If you want to, if you wanna take the responsibility and step up and do the things that you wanna do, then that's the doors are open. And I think I'll add something, just a small thing to what almost said, and that's the, yeah. Our group is somewhat unique at Wix and that we're very much focused on developers and on only developers for this point at time. [00:31:12]

And. This group is led by Nada Ajami, who is one of the co-founders of Wix. So it definitely has its place and definitely has its vision. And we're all along for the ride. [00:31:25]

Carl Vitullo: Nice. Yeah. That everything you've said about the culture at Wix sounds pretty rare actually. I've worked at, so I've, it sounds like I've been working about the same length of time as you have. I got my first job in 2012, but I have in that time rather than working at one company I've worked at I think nine. [00:31:43]

So yeah. My experience, my, my personal anecdotal experience is that the kind of culture you're describing is pretty rare in the industry.. That's pretty cool. [00:31:51]

Wix Team: you should drop a visit. Definitely [00:31:53]

Carl Vitullo: ha. [00:31:54]

Wix Team: Come see what's up. But you're very right though. Like I have to say I think it's one of the company's main pillars. Like we're gonna keep that vibe, we're gonna keep the atmosphere, we're gonna grow as a company, we're gonna grow as a product, but we're not gonna lose touch with the origin, and that, that's one of the most beautiful things in this company. So yeah. You should definitely stop by. [00:32:13]

Carl Vitullo: We have a good, sorry. have a good [00:32:15]

question from chat coming in. [00:32:18]

Fransen is asking how does the actual conversion of visually creative components take place to convert it into legitimate clean, react and CSS code? Yeah. So I guess asking about the process of taking the visual design and turning it into code that you can use yourself. [00:32:36]

Wix Team: So it's important to mention translating code design to code is not what Codux is about. That was my startup Rapid UI was about. Coded X's approach is very different. You are creating your components visually. You're not starting from a design tool or translating something into code. [00:32:54]

You're working with code since the beginning. It's always working with React and with TypeScript and with the styling solution that you choose. There's no translations at all actually. So we, you just worked with React. You may start your design off in in, with a mock or with a design tool or with something like that kind of lets you play around and explore the space of the problem and see what might work and what might not. [00:33:18]

But at a certain point you want to get to the real thing, and that's where Codux enters the picture and really provides. An experience that is code oriented, meaning your code is the source of truth, the files on your hearts, on, on your file system the code in your component. But wrapping that in an experience that's visual and that can actually do some things in a much nicer, leaner, more streamlined sort of way. [00:33:45]

Not sometimes writing code by hand, character by character is not necessarily the best way to describe a visual thing. And if you've ever created a very complex background in CSS that has like multiple layers and things like that, you might know what I'm talking about. Through the ui, you can do that very easily. [00:34:04]

But in hand it, like we've all used all sorts of builders on the web for shadows, for backgrounds, for corners, for all sorts of stuff like that. Because they work and they make our lives easier. So why not bring them closer to the table, closer to the code, and closer to our development experience? [00:34:21]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. Little follow up from Roberto. Does Kod Oaks work with Tailwind? [00:34:27]

Wix Team: Oh, we've been, we launched our beta on December 5th, so just over a month ago. And I think that's gotta be our highest like the most requested feature, right? Yeah. Top of the list, that's for sure. We are working on supporting Tailwind as we speak. We as Tom said, we just launched a beta like not that long ago. [00:34:46]

We didn't support Tailwind. We launched. Launch. But we got so many requests for tailing and we actually believe that it can be a really good experience the way, like the Codux approach of editing and how tailing works. So we are working on figuring out the best solution and the best experience of using tailing within Kodak. [00:35:04]

So it's not gonna be too long before you'll sit in the product. It's gonna be very close, actually. [00:35:10]

Carl Vitullo: Very neat. Yeah. I can see how it might not be a sort of a natural extension. If you're already working on code, interacting with code from a visual perspective, then you know that you, that doesn't obviously backport, into working with Tailwind. So you'd, you to work with Tailwind, you would need to then operate on Tailwind Primitives rather than code, I guess is what I'm trying to say. [00:35:35]

Wix Team: Yeah. And it's a bit different from like the editing class names and like selectors and it's slightly a different approach. It's very similar in many ways, but the editing experience I'm using those classes in a lot of them on each of my elements usually to style them. Slightly different approach. [00:35:53]

Nothing that is too too different or too complex. We just want to give a really good experience when using tailwind. It's all so visual. And this is what we're working on right now. And I think in general, like if you're working with a design system, whether that's end or something of your own th those are places that Codux could really shine because you've already have a lot of the building blocks. [00:36:15]

Like you have the Lego pieces, and now it's just a question of how you wanna put them together and play with them and see them in various states and situations and really explore how you can create it and what you're trying to do. We currently have already scalable support also. S, css, and yeah, sass, sas, css and Stylable. [00:36:35]

All those come supported out of the box including the, like the modules version of CSS and SaaS. Sticking to that component oriented design kind of philosophy. So yeah it's really a question of what tools you prefer to use and what tools fit the problem space. [00:36:50]

And as time goes on, we'll be looking to add more and more support for new tools and new frameworks and new languages. Even like React is just where we're starting off. We'll be exploring web components, ve solid angular. I don't know. It's, it'll be a question of what the community wants from us. [00:37:09]

It'll be a question of how technically feasible it is. Although Codex is designed from the ground up to, to support and facilitate this. So yeah it's all about choice and en enabling the choice for our users. And obviously you have to start somewhere, right? You have to make those hard decisions of where do I cut it? [00:37:25]

Where do I say, okay, this is what I'll start with. And we'll get to all of those technologies and will support more and more. But you have to start somewhere. And we've decided. Like a while ago. This is where we're gonna cut the cut and we want to put it out there. And we wanna listen to the community. [00:37:39]

We want to get people's requests. And it took so little time to start getting requests, especially for Tailwind. I think that we're all happy to just make sure to put it out there as fast as we can and start getting feedback. This is where we are all about today. And I think if anyone had a chance to take a look at the very recent state of JS that just came out for 2022 react is still King of the Hill. [00:38:03]

That's what most people use, that's the most common solution out there. And it makes a lot of sense for us to start there. Even all, like all of the development at Wix is done using React. So it's really our breaded. [00:38:16]

Carl Vitullo: Very nice. Yeah. Should we pick up talking about sort of our different journeys through the tech industry? We were talking with, Omar was speaking before, but yeah, I'd love to hear some of the, peter, some of your story of transitioning from a designer to a developer. [00:38:33]

Wix Team: Yeah, it's tough. It's interesting, right? It's not the craft is how to say separate. Like it's not the same. But it's interesting. I actually applying it everything on, so coding and in interactive experiences. The, I like styling in css, right? It's same kind. Stylability is also thing of mind. [00:38:57]

But yeah, it's it's interesting. [00:38:58]

I think it's like speaking as a longtime friend of Peter I don't know a lot of people who has, who have that level of passion for interactive experiences. It's we get a an opportunity to create complex things. And with that comes the challenge of making them accessible. [00:39:15]

Yeah. Yeah. It's true. It's true. And accurate, I guess from my point of view, like seeing it from the outside. But all a lot of our people like are great, but once you have that passion for interaction, for the styling aspect of things I can feel that like really is affected from your background. [00:39:34]

I, I believe, thanks guys. I love. Yeah. Also if you think about your interactions with our designs, with our UX people Yeah. I have stakes on like sides, like the. In UX and in our other development teams. So I have my opinions over there and also there, which is interesting. Yeah. But yeah, it's true. It's sometimes hard to keep those up, Yeah. to to remember that you're the developer and in this conversation, I know it's speaking in the name of our designers, it's probably hard for them as well. [00:40:04]

It's true. It's true. But it probably provides value. Yeah, for sure. It's it's like you're talking to people who know their stuff and that always makes it Yeah. A nicer experience. [00:40:16]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah. I guess it's, I guess having. Crossed a barrier like that for teams like, a lot of the time design and development is very siloed. It just because it's very different domains, it's very different problem spaces with very different language that's been built up and, the jargon, terminology and tools. [00:40:33]

So I guess having started in one and progressed into a different division there, that can be, that can leave you in a position where you are able to speak to both teams very effectively. So I could see how that could be a very valuable spot to be in. [00:40:48]

Wix Team: I agree. Trade off as well. It's I have opinions on styling and stuff like that. Also on coding and algorithms and Yeah. [00:40:58]

Everybody against me in [00:40:59]

Carl Vitullo: remember which hat you're wearing. [00:41:00]

Wix Team: Yeah, I know. Even though like I'm a developer in the end of the day. [00:41:05]

Carl Vitullo: Sure. [00:41:05]

Wix Team: But in this era of kinda trying to bridge you said like you talked about different silos or something like that, like separated mindsets for design and development. [00:41:16]

I that's all changing, like these two are getting closer together. The tools try to bring them closer together, not just Codux obviously of the industries is full with these changes like design tools or prototyping tools are all of it is more oriented to be like more similar to how the implementation works. [00:41:34]

It's all trying to bridge and connect better to, to one another. I can feel it for many years, obviously with my experience, but you can see it throughout the entire industry. It is a big advantage. I think like it also it's a con, it's a continuation of the conversation we had earlier about like the massive growth of capabilities and features in, in The web and that problem space. [00:41:58]

But the thing is that progression has happened in separate silos. Designers used to work with Photoshop to create websites, and you would create, you, you were able to create all of these possible designs that you would never be able to implement because the capabilities just weren't there. [00:42:12]

So then you had either illustrator or stuff like that, and then Sketch came along and now Figma is the hot stuff. And all of those things are trying to of bring designers closer to the real thing. And similar things have happened with perhaps product managers and their mock prototyping tools or with QA engineers or automation engineers and the environments that they have to test and validate and make sure that things work. [00:42:38]

All of that. Exploded. All of those users or audiences have gotten new tools with new things that they can do, but they didn't go back and interlink. And that's where our industry finds itself now, trying to find ways of reducing. Barriers between stakeholders. So there's no reason I'm sure many people can relate to the experience of ping I call it ping ponging with a designer where you get a design and you implement it, and then you get it, give it back to the designer, and he looks at it and he is oh, yeah, that's great, but three pixels here are off, and that color of that background isn't exactly right and all of those things. [00:43:20]

So he sends it back to you and you fix that, and then you send it back to him. And now he's okay, that's great, but we've gotten a change in the spec and now we need to do something slightly different here. And you just keep going over and over, even for things that are like small or mundane and if only that person could do it themselves, right? [00:43:36]

So the industry is looking for new ways of onboarding stakeholders from different domains, providing them with tools that are familiar to them, that solve the problems that they need. Without compromising the experience of any of the other users, [00:43:52]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah. I really like what you said about getting stakeholders CL closer to. Closer to each other. I think that's a, I think that's a really powerful thought and a really good way of framing tools like this. [00:44:03]

Wix Team: We can proudly say that our ux designers work on codes in codes. Like they can jump into the product they can jump into the product and change whatever they want. Like they wanna realign, recolor, change, fonting, chase font, spacing. It doesn't really matter. It's all css at the end of the day, or Stylable at the end of the day in our case. [00:44:24]

But yeah, just give them, empower them, let them be in, in your part of the neighborhood and let them play. And I guess look at the same source. That's one of the biggest upsides of this whole thing. It's not just like the power to do on my own. It's like there are no separated sources that are created along this whole like, complex situation that you've described just now. [00:44:47]

A lot of sources of truth are created and that can cause chaos in many cases. So putting them all together in that one place just that can eliminate so much troubles and like process pain, yeah. Yeah. Just, having a new feature kind of request come out and then needing to update your prototype and then update your design, and then update the actual implementation and making sure that all of your QA and automation things are supporting this new feature. [00:45:13]

That's massive amounts of work. That could probably be streamlined in various ways. [00:45:18]

Carl Vitullo: Yeah. Makes a lot of sense. All right, we are, we're coming up on 7:00 PM here. We had budgeted about an hour for this. Anything you, any, anything else you guys would like to talk about before we get off here? [00:45:31]

Wix Team: Wow. I dunno, I think we've covered like a lot of our bases. We've definitely spoken about like the various aspects that we're interested in the relationships between stakeholders and the project. How do web got its shape shaped? Its path throughout the last decade and where we feel it's going. [00:45:49]

I can talk about Stylable or Codux or any of that for hours on end, but that's probably for another time. So yeah. Yeah. I think we've covered a lot of things.