Importance of UI

The place to bring up any design issues, or post your own creations

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Read first, then answer: Do you agree with me?

Yes
43
91%
No
4
9%
 
Total votes: 47

Crappish
Posts: 92
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Location: Tampere, Finland

Post by Crappish » Tue Apr 05, 2005 7:32 pm

As you are so extensively talking about UI design and what should be done and what should not, I presumed that you would have the basic knowledge to separate UI and GUI.
Basically UI is, in this case, everything you get from the computer, starting from post beeps to the way it handles errors and ultimately what it looks like. As, GUI is generally assosiated as the graphical part of the UI. I.e. everything you see, from taskbar to icons and OK -buttons.

Besides, I see no need to give you any textbook definition, nor any other definiotions whatsoever, because you should know that all already. You kept flaming me, at IRC, that icons aren't part of GUI.. etc. (+bashing my opinions at IRC. I discussed about XP icons being easier to recognize which you so well did put as "retard design") As you clearly aren't willing to part from that knowledge I see absolutely no reason to argue about it.

mf wrote:Allow me to simplify how communication between us goes:

Me: *brings up a point about GUI design*
You: "GUI Design is totally different from UI Design!!"
Me: "I agree, but how does that relate to what I said?"
You: "You don't understand! Go study!"
Me: "Eh?"
You: "This is turning into pointless conversation!"
Me: "Er?"
How nice from you. I guess that concludes the conversation.


Now, if there are any decent opinions from other people I'm willing to discuss about the matter. The UI still should be taken into serious consideration. (with or without the flameout)
Can't provoke anyone? Why bother posting?

Crappish
Posts: 92
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Location: Tampere, Finland

Post by Crappish » Tue Apr 05, 2005 7:41 pm

mammlouk wrote:It seems to me that what Crappish is sort of hinting at is that the UI can be changed extensively, but the GUI is where only minor changes should be made to keep inline with windows. I may be way out in left field on this one though so feel free to correct me :)
Yes, the UI can be changed, just like few people already have suggested. Hell, even changing the one beep error message to two beeps would be change to UI. The basic behaviour of GUI however should remain as much windowslike as possible, while introducing new features. Like minimize window to taskbar via middle-button. Of course the basic behaviour of UI should remain windows-like, like I have said before, and yes, this is just for new users. As new users evetually become experienced users. Of course when the ROS in at heavy development state the new users won't be the ones to get on with it however this is excellent time to build the foundation for new users.

Also one of the improvement could consider some way of using corners of the screen as hotspots for, i.e. middle-click, as the corners are the places that you get fastest from anywhere of the screen. However, this should be done in the manner that regular user would not get annoyed by them (that's why the middle click) and still can be extensively used by experienced users to make the work flow faster.
Can't provoke anyone? Why bother posting?

MadRat
Posts: 243
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Post by MadRat » Tue Apr 05, 2005 8:39 pm

I like how Longhorn has a CLOCK in the login screen. It should have included a pretty calendar, too.

I also like how Longhorn has 3 Flashes and a "alpha blend" overlay for the taskbar error reflex (taskbar item tied to the Window) whereas in XP and prior it continuously flashes until the error is addressed. The constant flashing was annoying.

The thing I least like about Longhorn, but the basic idea isn't bad is the toggle in the lower right corner. It has two modes, "sidebar-on and systray-hidden" or "sidebar-off and visible systray". I think the toggle would make more sense to toggle between systray on the lower right, the systray docked like the Apple Dock, or the Switch-Task menu to appear in the center of the screen. Just would solve an issue with when a guy is keyboardless and needs to switch programs quickly.

Now are those GUI or UI ideas? :) j/k

Lets not forget Keyboard shortcuts:

Code: Select all

BYPASS AUTO FEATURE	[SHIFT]
HELP			[F1]
RENAME			[F2]
FIND NEXT			[F3]
FIND PREVIOUS		Shift-F3
QUIT PROGRAM		ALT-F4
REFRESH			[F5]
OPEN MENU		[F10]
OPEN OBJECT MENU		Shift-[F10]
OPEN G/W E-MAIL		Ctrl-1
OPEN G/W CALENDAR		Ctrl-2
OPEN G/W ADDRESS BOOK	Ctrl-3
OPEN G/W TODO LIST	Ctrl-4
OPEN G/W JOURNAL		Ctrl-5
SELECT ALL		Ctrl-A
BOOKMARK FILE		Ctrl-B
COPY			Ctrl-C
END OF LINE		Ctrl-E
FIND			Ctrl-F
FRONT OF LINE		Ctrl-H
DELETE TO END OF LINE	Ctrl-K
NEW E-MAIL MESSAGE	Ctrl-M
NEW DOC			Ctrl-N
OPEN FILE			Ctrl-O
PRINT DOC		Ctrl-P
QUIT PROGRAM		Ctrl-Q
REPLACE			Ctrl-R
SAVE FILE			Ctrl-S
DELETE TO BEGIN OF LINE	Ctrl-U
PASTE			Ctrl-V
CLOSE DOC		Ctrl-W
CUT			Ctrl-X
REDO			Ctrl-Y
UNDO			Ctrl-Z
REDO			Ctrl-Shift-Z
ENTER INPUT		[ENTER]
OPEN OBJECT PROPERTIES	Alt-[ENTER]
DELETE SELECTION		[DELETE]
PERMANENT DELETE		Shift-[DELETE]
STOP PROGRAM		[ESC]
OPEN START MENU		Ctrl-[ESC]
NEXT FIELD		[TAB]
PREVIOUS FIELD		Shift-[TAB]
LINE UP			[Up Arrow]
SELECT PREVIOUS LINE	Shift-[Up Arrow]
LINE DOWN		[Down Arrow]
SELECT NEXT LINE		Shift-[Down Arrow]
BACK ONE CHAR		[Left Arrow]
SELECT LEFT ONE CHAR	Shift-[Left Arrow]
FORWARD ONE CHAR		[Right Arrow]
SELECT RIGHT ONE CHAR	Shift-[Right Arrow]
PAGE UP			[PAGE UP]
SELECT ONE SCREEN UP	Shift-[PAGE UP]
PAGE DOWN		[PAGE DOWN]
SELECT ONE SCREEN DOWN	Shift-[PAGE DOWN]
INSERT PAGE BREAK		Ctrl-[ENTER]
FRONT OF LINE		[HOME]
TOP OF DOC		Ctrl-[HOME]
SELECT TO LINE BEGIN	Shift-[HOME]
END OF LINE		[END]
END OF DOC		Ctrl-[END]
SELECT TO LINE END		Shift-[END]
BLANK SPACE		[SPACEBAR]
DISPLAY SYSTEM MENU	Alt-[SPACEBAR]
DELETE CHARACTER		[BACK SPACE]
ERASE ONE WORD BACK	Shift-[BACK SPACE]
ZOOM IN			Ctrl-[=]
ZOOM ALL IN		Ctrl-Shift-[=]
ZOOM OUT			Ctrl-[-]
ZOOM ALL OUT		Ctrl-Shift-[-]
Last edited by MadRat on Tue Apr 05, 2005 11:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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mf
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Post by mf » Tue Apr 05, 2005 9:27 pm

crappish wrote:Besides, I see no need to give you any textbook definition, nor any other definiotions whatsoever, because you should know that all already. You kept flaming me, at IRC, that icons aren't part of GUI.. etc. (+bashing my opinions at IRC. I discussed about XP icons being easier to recognize which you so well did put as "retard design") As you clearly aren't willing to part from that knowledge I see absolutely no reason to argue about it.
Wow. That is so mangled that I don't even feel tempted to seperate all the tidbits of misinformation into quote tags and point out where stuff has been kludged together in your brain. But it's at least cool to know how wrong someone can interpret normal conversation.

Just to throw in some much needed nuance (which seems to be terribly difficult for you): I said that icons are not subjected to UI design rules. They are part of the GUI but only their placement, size, what happens when you click it, etc, are the things that relate to UI design. The icon itself (the way it looks, or what it resembles), has two simple rules: to be consistent with its surroundings (iconsets should have the same style and blend in with the look and feel of the OS), and it should be easily recognizable in its depiction. PERIOD. You kept implying that there are other magic rules to abide to that I should go read books about, which I of course denied. Also, completely unrelated to what you said (you were idle at the time), I mentioned how I find it funny that people (IN GENERAL!) glorify the XP icons/skins even though it is made for retards. These blinding brightly colored in-your-face, the-button-can't-be-big-enough interfaces that seem to be designed with visually and cognitively handicapped people in mind that I find an insult to my intelligence. This is just my opinion that I ranted around a bit, which you took personally and started attacking. Feel flamed but I think it was my opinion that you attacked, not the other way around.

I see now that your distinction between UI and GUI is such an irrelevant one that I can hardly get into why you shout so loud about it. To me, what happens when you click a button with middlemouse or rightmouse is still part of how the GUI responds to user input. Keyboard shortcuts are ways to interact with the GUI without using the mouse. Basically, what you call GUI is the part that just sits there being pretty. I still count the interaction, be it with mouse, keyboard, or voice commands, interacting with that same GUI. It doesn't become "generic UI" all of a sudden just because it stopped sitting there being pretty and started reacting to user input. Personally, I'd say the way how everything sticks together could be called normal UI whereas anything that has buttons or such things is GUI. Still, if you ask a UNIX sysadmin he'll tell you that anything that can't be run under console is GUI. These are the sort of distinctions that keep me running after your definition of UI and GUI. It is because I know you can't talk about things when you both have something else in mind. You insist though that your opinion is absolute and the truth(tm), and that if I read enough books I'd understand.

You presumed I had "basic knowledge of UI", I presumed you had basic knowledge of how to conduct an argument. You know what they say, "assumption is the mother of all f*ckups"...

Blaskowicz
Posts: 26
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 9:19 am

Post by Blaskowicz » Tue Apr 05, 2005 11:46 pm

crappish wrote:First of all not meaning to bash you but all of the stuff you are talking as UI design seems to be merely GUI. UI design includes lots of other things even though GUI is one of the most important parts of it. It is important to understand and to keep these two separated as mere GUI design would still lead to "design as you go" solution.
Not directed to anyone specific

However, couldn't resist throwing my 2cents in and created a draft for the start menu. (Even though designing GUI piece by piece is not good for the overall design)

Image

As the two column start menu seem to create quarrel I created kind of a hybrid of those two. From top down (- {item name}: {things in the submenu}):
- Username, Help button
- The list of recent applications used
- My Documents: Recent files, Browse my files
- My Computer: Browse my computer, Printers, Control panel
- Network: Recent, Browse network, My shares, Network settings
- Search: Recent, Search
- Run: Recent, Run...
- All programs
- Power off (maybe add Log off, too tired to add that anymore)


This way both, old and new startmenu users should feel like home. I did put lots of stuff to i.e. My Computer but that's just because those things are seldom used.

mf wrote:Well, it could just be my humble opinion that they're not rocket science. To any other man ASM might be the easiest thing on the planet. Still there's 500-page thick books about it :) Personally, I think most has been said and done with regard to UI, and it's just a matter of choosing a "best of both" approach when looking at previous designs.
Not meaning to bash you but.. Boy, you really are out in the woods with this. Why do you think there are companies spending vast amounts of money in UI design if it would be that simple?
I really like this startmenu, both look and usage. mf says it has bad grouping but I don't think so. (BTW I don't give a shit about your flame war, GUI vs UI etc.)


"All programs" at the bottom is great, it allows fast access, and it makes sense next to the run button. (both are for launching a program and require an extra step or more, compared to clicking an icon). The place of "All programs" is the only good thing about the horrible double-column XP start menu.

The top icons are user added crap anyway. I use them as another quicklaunch bar, reachable with the keyboard.
With the classic XP startmenu (single column), "programs" is harder to reach when you have added shorcuts at the top (esp. using the keyboard)

The run button is nice (the arrow implies it develops, displaying the text bar for launching stuff)
You forgot the "Favorites" menu, I would put it above "My documents". Favorites are a great way of reaching most used directories either from the start menu or from explorer windows.

Help button is nice, it doesn't get in your way and is consistent with programs (it's always the top right menu)

Next to Power Off I would add a "Session" button. Just another name for "Log off", but I think it makes more sense, as it will open a popup window with "Lock Screen", "Change Session" and "Log Off" (you could put the "User Accounts" icon from the control panel too).

An icon at the left of "All programs" is missing too, that makes the menu look crappish :P
Other ugly things : it's too fat (too wide for no reason, but if it works like windows the width would be automatically set), and the top icons should be (in my opinion) a bit more on the left (but I would use the bigger icons anyway). I would remove the separator line between All programs and Run


Last but not least : the start menu should be customizable anyway (size of icons, placement of stuff, separators, maybe special objects like clock, an input field; and whether you want stuff to be display in the first place. Under windows I have to use TweakUI to get rid of Help and Documents)

Duck
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 4:44 am

filesearch

Post by Duck » Wed Apr 06, 2005 1:28 am

Crappish wrote:
"Sadly, this can't be done with the way the files are currently handled. For this ROS would need database driven FS or at least some way to index all files in real time."

Well that is really a pitty... The search mechanism in windows is one of the small things i would like Ros to correct. I really hope some of the devs picks this up and takes it into serious consideration.... But now is the right time to bring these questions onto the table right?

The windows search mechanism is stressful... :( :cry: :(

One more thought about UI (and GUI :lol: ). A friend of mine works on video editing and Uses both XP (at work) and OSX (home). He complains about the way windows explorer handles the preview of video files.
According to him, one of the exxelent features his Mac has over windows is that in finder the file appears in a a player and he can go back and forward with the mouse to view not just the first frame which windows shows and can be misleading but just about every frame in that video file with a fantastic control. On windows (he has a specialized workstation at work) when using the explorer he can only see the first frame or play the file. Of course when he plays the file its very hard for him to browse it in detail.

what do you think of ading the capability to browse through video files as i described (hopefully well enough) to Ros?
My friend has a point there. when you have hundreds of fies like he does seing the first frame only may not be enough to properly identify a video file.

Blaskowicz
Posts: 26
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 9:19 am

Post by Blaskowicz » Wed Apr 06, 2005 4:15 am

about file preview, I think it should be done via some kind of plugins, and without putting these boring thumbs.db everywhere.

Crappish
Posts: 92
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Location: Tampere, Finland

Re: filesearch

Post by Crappish » Wed Apr 06, 2005 8:21 am

Duck wrote:Well that is really a pitty... The search mechanism in windows is one of the small things i would like Ros to correct. I really hope some of the devs picks this up and takes it into serious consideration.... But now is the right time to bring these questions onto the table right?

The windows search mechanism is stressful... :( :cry: :(
I have already questioned few ROS developers of this (DB driven FS) but it seems that it is not going to get included for a while because it would create massive amount of work and as ROS isn't even stable yet there is no reason for this to be on, not just yet. I still hope they are able to implement it as fast as possible.
Can't provoke anyone? Why bother posting?

Crappish
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 2:26 pm
Location: Tampere, Finland

Post by Crappish » Wed Apr 06, 2005 8:29 am

Blaskowicz wrote:Next to Power Off I would add a "Session" button. Just another name for "Log off", but I think it makes more sense, as it will open a popup window with "Lock Screen", "Change Session" and "Log Off" (you could put the "User Accounts" icon from the control panel too).
To power user it makes more sense but what about the mainstream audience? The regular Joe. To him Log off makes alot more sense than Session button, as they might not even know what session is. True, the Log off button should be there but like I said, I was just too tired to add it.

Blaskowicz wrote:Last but not least : the start menu should be customizable anyway (size of icons, placement of stuff, separators, maybe special objects like clock, an input field; and whether you want stuff to be display in the first place. Under windows I have to use TweakUI to get rid of Help and Documents)
Personally I don't see this happening in near future as it is not that necessary as the rest of the stuff. But it would be nice to have at least some customizing options.
Can't provoke anyone? Why bother posting?

mf
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Post by mf » Wed Apr 06, 2005 1:23 pm

crappish, what's up? Don't tell me I wrote all that for the cat's ass! If you can't or don't want to respond to my post, you're even worse at arguments than I thought! It's kinda like my father, when he runs out of arguments he runs off and slams the door behind him. I guess I'll have no choice but to assume that you give up and agree with me. Also, don't come with any pacifistic proverbs or shit like that because you started this flame in the first place, and you better damn well end it properly too, and no Tao Te Ching wisdom can save you now. Stuff like this usually ends with either me admitting to be wrong, the other side admitting to be wrong, both sides admitting that even though it was an argument in the end we agree on both our valid points, or me concluding the other side lacks intelligence. Please don't let it be the 4th option.

Harteex
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Post by Harteex » Wed Apr 06, 2005 4:29 pm

I really think a UI department would be a nice idea, and I really like most of crappish' designs (especially packet manager)

but I vote to stop the flames :P

Crappish
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Location: Tampere, Finland

Post by Crappish » Wed Apr 06, 2005 5:54 pm

*puts out the flame*
Can't provoke anyone? Why bother posting?

mf
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Post by mf » Wed Apr 06, 2005 6:49 pm

crappish wrote:*puts out the flame*
Yeah. IRC is so much better to solve conflicts. ^^

MadRat
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Post by MadRat » Thu Apr 07, 2005 12:08 am

I see the need for 3 icons at the bottom of the START MENU:

FAST USER SWITCH
LOCK SCREEN
SHUTDOWN

The options for these 3 choices should be as follows:


FAST USER SWITCH
|-SWITCH CURRENT USER
| |-LOGIN SELECTED USER
| |-LOGOUT SELECTED USER
| `-SUSPEND SELECTED USER
|-MANAGE PERSONAL PROFILE
| |-BACKUP PERSONAL PROFILE
| |-SELECT PERSONAL PROFILE
| `-EDIT PERSONAL PROFILE
|-CHANGE MY PASSWORD
`-LOG OUT

LOCK SCREEN
|-LOCK SCREEN
|-SCREENSAVER ONLY (NO LOCK)
|-TURN OFF MONITOR (NO LOCK)
`-SUSPEND MODE (LOCKED)

SHUTDOWN
|-HIBERNATE MY HARDWARE
| |-HIBERNATE COMPUTER
| |-DISABLE DEVICE
| `-ENABLE DEVICE
|-QUICK RESTART
|-SHUTDOWN AND RESTART
`-SHUTDOWN AND TURN OFF
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Stead
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Post by Stead » Thu Apr 07, 2005 12:34 am

i don't know if its just me, but i think crappish seems to be really into making reactos user friendly, would it be to much to ask for crappish to bring up basic designs for the most common parts of reactos? developers don't have to accept any of it, but if one person can make the design of the screens throughout reactos, you have that nice consistant feel which i for one am a big fan of! one of the many reasons i've never liked linux (sorry for mentioning :p)

or create a standard idea for the control panel applets, as i guess most of hte interface would be through those...

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