Clinging to Windows Classic

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kevinski
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Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by kevinski » Sat Dec 27, 2008 6:51 am

I realize that this has been said before, but there's an aspect of ReactOS that really, really concerns me. Let me begin with a quote from the main page of the ReactOS Web site:
Additionally, the look and feel of the Windows operating system is used, such that people accustomed to the familiar user interface of Windows® would find using ReactOS straightforward. The ultimate goal of ReactOS is to allow you to remove Windows® and install ReactOS without the end user noticing the change.
Let's be realistic. Really, when is ReactOS going to be ready for the average person? There's no point in clinging to a user interface that - let's face it - hasn't been standard since Windows XP was launched. With Vista, it's even more difficult to recomment Windows Classic to most users. While I don't have anything against Windows Classic, I do think that it'd make more sense to modernize it while still embracing its strengths (i.e. low resource usage). How about just sprucing it up a bit, maybe making things look less archaic?

I do feel that - to some extent - ReactOS kinda needs to do its own thing.
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vicmarcal
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by vicmarcal » Sat Dec 27, 2008 7:06 am

As i said,,,begin changing color/themes...it´s not difficult(navigate in explorer.exe source code) making nicer graphics.
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Elledan
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Elledan » Sat Dec 27, 2008 11:55 am

Once ReactOS reaches a more mature stage it could support a theme manager or such.

kevinski
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by kevinski » Sat Dec 27, 2008 2:58 pm

I understand that you can change themes. My concern is that ReactOS is attempting to mimic Windows' appearance, but it's mimicking Windows' appearance from years ago. By the time that ReactOS is stable enough to run normally on most users' computers, the idea of replacing Windows with ReactOS and the end user not noticing the difference isn't terribly likely.
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Aape
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Aape » Sat Dec 27, 2008 3:14 pm

See my "A Modern Operating System" rants for most of my thoughts on this, but the OP brings up a fantastic point that I can't remember whether I brought up in my rants or not: The Windows UI is changing. The stated goal on our website is "To be able to remove Windows from the computer and install ReactOS without the user noticing the difference." Let's say that ReactOS had all of its compatibility goals finished today and the golded release was put out to the public, but the UI had no changes. Could you *really* meet the goal then? No.

But this project suffers too much from being like a Linux one. Too many purists who consider the concerns of non-techies to be an afterthought. Xorg is broken on your only computer, and you don't know how to fix it off by heart? Too bad for you! You don't deserve to be using a computer... I'm hoping it can get past that though, but we'll just have to wait and see.

Of course, the universal answer that kills all form of design discussion also comes into play here: We have more important things to worry about with ROS right now.

Z98
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Z98 » Sat Dec 27, 2008 6:47 pm

Let's phrase that statement a different way. Our shell32 is far too incomplete to even attempt anything fancier. If you want a better explorer or something that looks different, we need to work on shell32, and no, we can't borrow from Wine in this instance since shell32 is one of their least cared about components. And there was only one developer that was working on shell32, and he's currently busy with real life.

Aape
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Aape » Sat Dec 27, 2008 8:41 pm

Z98 wrote:Let's phrase that statement a different way. Our shell32 is far too incomplete to even attempt anything fancier. If you want a better explorer or something that looks different, we need to work on shell32, and no, we can't borrow from Wine in this instance since shell32 is one of their least cared about components. And there was only one developer that was working on shell32, and he's currently busy with real life.
Thank you for this more specific version of "We have more important things to worry about right now."

vicmarcal
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by vicmarcal » Sat Dec 27, 2008 11:42 pm

Aape:

I have a rule that HERE works.


"Show them they are wrong:Dont tell them.Show them"

What that means?

"You(you==as any of us) can waste time complaining,trying to show your ideas are nice and indeed better,but Devs are too busy to hear you,indeed they are bored of people suggesting while they have a OS which works just sometimes.
So change your mind.Do u want a better design?Go to the code,search the BMP,GIF files that makes our explorer looks old-fashionable.And change them with the BMP,GIF files that u made.Really,really easy.Change each "actual-looks-old-fashionable" BMP/GIF/JPEG files with a "new-looks-nice" BMP/GIF/JPEG files.

Dont u know how your new-explorer looks like because you dont know how to compile it?Ask here and I/and devs will tell u how to compile(it takes less than one minute,we have a tool that make it automatically).

And after you show to the Devs community u are so useful, that you really wanna expend your time in this project, that u arent a complaining troll,that u understand this project works slow and exists priorities (and also real life)...then and just then...they will begin to trust in you.

I felt exactly the same as u feel now("there are more important things to do now" statement hurted me a lot).Now my ideas/complaints..little by little (as the same time they begin trusting in me)..are been taken in consideration and some get done.


Complainings of non-working people sucks. Help and then begin complaining,then the Dev community will heard them.
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kevinski
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by kevinski » Sun Dec 28, 2008 5:40 am

So, I'm a troll now? Forgive me for bringing up a very valid point. It was just a thought, and - as someone else has already mentioned - ReactOS is shooting for a goal that it can never reach with its current aim. I complete understand that some people have "real life" to contend with, but I hate the "If you want it, then program it yourself." attitude.

NEWS FLASH: Most programmers know very little about good interface design. Companies such as Microsoft know what they're doing in this regard, and - despite what a lot of people want to admit - many of the changes made in Vista make sense. I'm not saying that ReactOS needs to look like Vista, but its usability needs to mimic that of Vista, and going with Windows Classic from the Win2K era isn't gonna cut it. I'm more of a designer than I am a programmer, so forgive me for attempting to make a recommendation.

Don't you think that there are going to be problems when ReactOS deviates from the accepted UI in newer versions of Windows? Doesn't that directly conflict with its ultimate goal? This is why ReactOS needs to have its own identity, rather than being that OS that looks almost just like Win2K. It's as though any idea that makes a shred of sense with regard to improving the usability of ReactOS gets shot down, and it's pretty sad. Really, you'd might as well make a clone of Windows 3.1 at this point. It'd be every bit as relevant at this point.
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Z98
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Z98 » Sun Dec 28, 2008 6:30 am

Trying to tell us what our priorities should be won't get you anywhere. After all, what's the point of making the UI fancier if we still can't keep the system from corrupting itself? The majority of the developers are focused on this issue, since it can basically render the system unusable without even getting TO the UI.

The "show us code" message is quite simple. We don't have the time to do it right now, so if you want it done now, you have to do it yourself. I fail to see how that is unreasonable, since the developers are using their free time to work on this project. You've made recommendations, but it is our decision whether to act upon them. We know that the UI will eventually have to be updated, but we can't do it now. If you do not agree with that decision, that is your prerogative, but no amount of complaining is going to change the fact that it's US that have to do the work that YOU want to do.

Elledan
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Elledan » Sun Dec 28, 2008 11:47 am

Really... ReactOS is in alpha stage, the backend stuff is a lot more critical than flashy GUI stuff. Once we reach 0.4 I can see some work on the frontend occurring, but right now it'd be like waxing a car while it's undergoing an overhaul in the shop.

Aape
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Aape » Sun Dec 28, 2008 2:05 pm

My purpose isn't to tell the developers to get to work on a flashier GUI NOW, I'm perfectly aware that now is not an appropriate time to begin work on these things. However, it's not too early to start planning and getting ideas for what we can do when the time is right...

And ah, the mentality that brings every Open Source project to its demise: "If you aren't a programmer, shut up!" It seems as if ROS has a lot more to get past than I originally thought.

hto
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by hto » Sun Dec 28, 2008 4:30 pm

Aape wrote:It seems as if ROS has a lot more to get past than I originally thought.
Quite true.

Elledan
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Elledan » Sun Dec 28, 2008 5:01 pm

Aape wrote:My purpose isn't to tell the developers to get to work on a flashier GUI NOW, I'm perfectly aware that now is not an appropriate time to begin work on these things. However, it's not too early to start planning and getting ideas for what we can do when the time is right...

And ah, the mentality that brings every Open Source project to its demise: "If you aren't a programmer, shut up!" It seems as if ROS has a lot more to get past than I originally thought.
Oh, I know what you mean, and if you read the dev mailing list, you'll know that I have tried to change things for the better (only to meet a fair bit of resistance) :)

Thing is that the devs of this project (and many others) see it more as a kind of hobby, so they generally reject any kind of formal planning, documentation or specification writing.

*shrugs*

At least the sub-projects in ROS which I am leading are subject to more strict planning and design :)

Haos
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Re: Clinging to Windows Classic

Post by Haos » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:54 am

Aape, you sound like someone who really havent even tried ReactOS, alas once or twice. The short answer is: yes, there are more important things at the moment.
Its all the term of resources and using them effectively. Tell me, WHO is supposed to start planning the UI right now? Can you point your finger toward anyone? I dont have time, nor Z98, vic, not even mentioning any of the devs. Who are you gonna assign to this job? Lets review this thread... AH! Typical "Here is the idea, now go and make it happen" thread. For me, this whole section is next to pointless. If you review older threads, there were only few people, who actually planned something and helped us out. All the rest has this awful "take this is and do it" approach, and goes offended when refused.

We lack everything: time, manpower, hardware, devs, testrers, translators of some languages, docs of several areas, graphics and web dev people, random contributros, bug reporters... We are only abudant in bloody good ideas. One better than another...

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