These guidelines are designed to help developers and designers create a beautifully consistent experience on the elementary desktop. They were written for interface designers, graphic artists and software developers who will be working on elementary OS. They will not only define specific design elements and principles, but will also instill a philosophy that will allow you to decide when it is appropriate to deviate from the Guidelines. Adhering to the suggestions contained here will provide many benefits:
To help you achieve these goals, these guidelines will cover basic interface elements, how to use them and put them together effectively, and how to make your application integrate well with the desktop. The most important thing to remember is that following these guidelines will make it easier to design a new application, not harder.
However, keep in mind that this is a guideline, not a rulebook. New, amazing interaction paradigms appear every day and more are waiting to be discovered. This is a living document that can and will be changed.
For sections that have not yet been written, please refer to The GNOME HIG