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Figma temporarily suspended AI tool for generative designs

Figma temporarily suspended AI tool for generative designs

As The Verge mentioned

Figma has temporarily suspended its "Make Design" AI tool following accusations of copying Apple's Weather app. The controversy erupted during the Config 2024 conference, where Figma unveiled new AI capabilities to improve design workflows by generating UI mocks, organizing layers, and more. However, concerns were raised about the similarity of Figma's AI-generated designs to Apple's proprietary weather app interface. Figma is currently investigating the issue to ensure compliance with intellectual property laws.

The left bar how Apple weather looks like, and the Right 3 blocks show how Figma offers to design a 'weather app'

The company also introduced other significant updates, including a redesigned UI, enhanced Dev Mode features, and the launch of Figma Slides, a new presentation tool that competes with Google Slides and Microsoft PowerPoint. These updates are part of Figma's broader effort to enhance user experience and expand its capabilities in the design and prototyping space.

The Co-founder of Figma Dylan Field said:

The Co-founder of Figma Dylan Field

In posts on X, Andy Allen, CEO of Not Boring Software, showed just how closely Figma’s Make Designs tool made near-replicas of Apple’s weather app. “Just a heads up to any designers using the new Make Designs feature that you may want to thoroughly check existing apps or modify the results heavily so that you don’t unknowingly land yourself in legal trouble,” Allen wrote.

In a Tuesday interview with Figma CTO Kris Rasmussen, I asked him point blank if Make Designs was trained on Apple’s app designs. His response? He couldn’t say for sure. Figma was not responsible for training the AI models it used at all.

“We did no training as part of the generative AI features,” Rasmussen said. The features are “powered by off-the-shelf models and a bespoke design system that we commissioned, which appears to be the underlying issue.”

That generally matches something he said on Monday on X in response to a user who suggested Make Designs was trained on existing apps. 

“As we shared when we launched Figma AI last week, there was no training as part of this feature or any of our generative features,” he wrote. “We are looking into what extent the similarities are a function of the third party models we are using vs. the design systems we commissioned to be used by the models and we will address as needed.”

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