Figma disables its AI design feature that appeared to copy Apple’s Weather app

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Figma CEO Dylan Field says the company will temporarily shut down its “Make Design” AI feature, which was said to be copying the design of Apple’s own weather app. The problem was first noticed by Andy Allen, founder of NotBoring Software, which makes a suite of apps that includes a skinnable weather app and other utilities. He tested Figma’s tool and found that it repeatedly reproduced Apple’s weather app when used as a design aid.

Allen accused X (formerly Twitter) of “heavily” training its tools on existing apps – an accusation that Field has now denied.

The “Make Designs” AI feature was introduced at Figma’s Config conference last week, where the company explained that it was not trained on Figma content, community files, or app designs, as Field wrote in his response to X.

“In other words, the allegations made in this tweet about data training are false,” he added.

The Make Design feature is available in Figma’s software and will create UI (user interface) layouts and components from text prompts. “Simply describe what you need, and the feature will provide you with a first draft,” the company explained at the time of its launch.

Figma said the idea was that developers could use this feature to quickly present their ideas, start exploring different design directions, and then arrive at a solution faster.

But in the rush to launch new AI features to stay competitive, the quality assurance work that should have accompanied the new features has been overlooked.

Echoing complaints in other industries, some designers were quick to argue that Figma’s AI tools, like Make Design, would eliminate jobs by bringing digital design to the mass market, while others countered that AI would only help eliminate the repetitive work done in design, leading to more interesting ideas.

However, Allen’s discovery that Figma essentially appeared to copy other apps raised concerns in the design community.

Allen warned others at X, “All designers using the new Make Design feature are advised to thoroughly test existing apps or make drastic changes to the results, to avoid inadvertently getting into legal trouble.”

Field explained that Make Design uses off-the-shelf LLMs (large language models), which are paired with “systems we commission to be used by these models.” The problem with this approach, he said, is that variability is very low.

“Within a few hours of seeing (Allen’s) tweet, we identified the issue as being related to the underlying design system that was built,” Field wrote on X. “Ultimately it’s my fault for not insisting on a better QA process for this work and putting pressure on my team to meet deadlines for config.”

Field says Figma will temporarily disable the Make Design feature until the team is confident it can “stand behind its output.” The feature will be disabled starting today, Tuesday, July 2, and will not be re-enabled until Figma completes a full QA pass on the feature’s underlying design system.

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