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Related: Graduation, site closure, and a clearer outlook on the health of Stack Exchange sites

As of now I can see only Kurtis Beavers doing the design work, with Jin as Creative Director.

As an aside, would open/crowdsourcing CSS design for the betas to GitHub relieve the design backlog?

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Stéphane Martin also does site designs. Although the designer lineup can change at any time.

How many beta sites can SE design team get graduated per year?

Several*. Definitely several*.

Seriously, we don't know. The design backlog is currently shrinking now that more than just Jin is working on the designs. How long each takes varies by site, although the design team has put a lot of effort into paying down CSS debt and making the designs easier to set up and maintain.

As an aside, would open/crowdsourcing CSS design for the betas to GitHub relieve the design backlog?

I understand the temptation, but honestly... I doubt that. For one, this would require open-sourcing the entire Q&A design template, which would make it harder for us to make any changes to it internally. The overall amount of work that'd need to be done to support this in our dev/design workflows would negate any benefits.

But aside from that, and I mean absolutely no offense to our users out there... unless they're also designers, we aren't going to save that much time. If "design by developer" was going to be good enough, we have a whole dev team here that could slap a few colours together. :) But it's the research and the custom graphics and concepts and such that make our sites look awesome. Any crowd-sourced design would have to be reviewed and vetted by a designer in-house, possibly modified or cleaned up... and users don't necessarily have access to all parts of the site unless they also happen to be moderators.

Last but not least, a literal "design by committee" is not likely to be particularly fast. It's important to have someone whose actual job it is to drive the design forward and get it done.

Overall it's just not very practical.

* While supplies last. Subject to change without notice. Actual number may vary. No cash value.

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