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Skinning API planning
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orudge
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2002 12:55 pm    Post subject: Skinning API planning Reply with quote

This thread is for planning the skinning API.
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dr_linux



Joined: 10 Jun 2002
Posts: 45
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2002 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Owen!
Here is my skin with a logo:

The buttons should be placed like the users want it. the menu of each program is in the panel at the top. on the right side of the panel is the quick-window-change-button. on the left side is the menu-button
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Iamryan2002



Joined: 09 Apr 2002
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2002 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice idea... like a Mac or KDE desktop
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biggyp



Joined: 16 Oct 2001
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2002 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

very impressive thats one major thing we need, repeating windows textures and seperate window borders would be very usefull.
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CronoXG2



Joined: 25 Jun 2002
Posts: 45

PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2002 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote



This is an idea for a low-color skin I'm working on. It also features some of the things I'd like to see in the SEAL 3 UI, such as the file menu at the top, the taskbar at the bottom, the close button in the upper right hand corner of the screen, etc. It doesn't show how the taskbar would work though. I still have to work out more colors while still maintaining a raised look.

I'll design something for higher color/resolution users with a more Aqua look using the same basic UI design later.
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Paul Crighton



Joined: 11 Jan 2002
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2002 6:40 am    Post subject: Just an idea... Reply with quote

I think it would be nice to have skinning per application (you know the ability to skin each application independantly of the other). Also, the ability to skin the taskbar would be cool.

Just a thought!
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CronoXG2



Joined: 25 Jun 2002
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2002 2:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Just an idea... Reply with quote

Paul Crighton wrote:
I think it would be nice to have skinning per application (you know the ability to skin each application independantly of the other). Also, the ability to skin the taskbar would be cool.

Just a thought!


Well, for any skin to look nice, everything would have to be skinnable. As for being able to skin each application independant of all others, this could be done by having a database of applications and saved preferences, one of which would be which system theme it uses. By default however, all applications should use the selected system skin.

Also, will SEAL be able to have shaped windows? What about window shadows implemented so you can't grab them, but can grab the border?
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_xduffy_
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2002 3:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dr_linux: Youre pic is awesome... I really like the logo too... it's great!

Skinning applications independantly is not something I would recommend... that would clutter the ui for ppl... I think we should do Seal 3 with the unexperienced user in mind.


Shaped windows would be cool... but this is the skinning api planning thread... so you should suggest it in the appropiate thread
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BadSector
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2002 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

my skinning functions supports "independent" application skinning (which means that a window can use it's own skin or the global skin)
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CronoXG2



Joined: 25 Jun 2002
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 1:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Instead of just having a thread related to skins and the skinning API, why not have a thread also dedicated solely to discussion about SEAL 3's UI.

Also, here's a new revised UI based on my older one:


I've moved the SEAL menu to the menu bar (so it now looks more Mac-ish, although that was not the intention), and I've changed the way task grouping works (which was far from obvious in the last UI design, but was part of the UI).

I've also dropped the idea of putting another close button in the upper right-hand corner of the screen since the duplication of the same functionality in multiple places isn't usually good. It would simply have confused new users.

I also managed to finally reduce the number of colors to 5 (6 including the background), so it should be able to work at VGA resolutions (although the dark and light grays will be slightly off).



Something else I'd like to suggest is that instead of having pure skinning support, why not support the use of different rendering engines that would dominate the look and feel of the UI? You could make the entire look and feel of the UI completely changeable through the rendering engine (e.g. where the menu bar is placed, where scrollbars are placed, etc.).

There could be an engine created just to be lightweight and fast, while there could also be an engine that could use XML files and PNG and BMP images (PNG for alpha-transparencies) to specify the look and feel of the entire UI, so that non-programmers, skinners, and themers could design their own UIs, each with its own unique look and feel.

This would work by having each widget/control would pass on some basic information about how they can be drawn and placed to the rendering engine, and the rendering engine would handle the rest.

Menu bars, for example, would be able to be drawn in the main window of an application, or at the top of the screen. They could also be drawn as detached from the main window.

This probably isn't too great (or practical) an idea, but I figured I'd just mention it anyway.

_xduffy_ :

You're right about the skinning applications independantly part. But if some people with bad taste want to be able to do that, then why not just make it possible through registry hacks so normal users wouldn't be able to figure out how to do it?

Yeah, I suppose I should have posted the suggestion for shaped windows in the Window and Window Control Planning thread. I'll copy it over later.
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_xduffy_
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 4:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Crono: I agree on that the technical posibility to skin apps independently is good, but not something that we should use for the releases, but instead it's something for tweakers
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BadSector
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 7:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote



My proposition for the UI
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_xduffy_
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BadSector: Youre proposition is cool But hardly what the standard Seal 3 should look like
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Amos Vryhof
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 5:25 pm    Post subject: VGA Reply with quote

I think that low color Skin would be perfect for EGA, but Standard VGA is 16 colors.... EGA is 8....


Perhaps a 640x400 mode in Seal for EGA support would be a good idea!

BadSector....that UI is nice, but the transparency should be optional....It gets annoying after awhile....

As for the MenuBar being at the top, perhaps that could be Optional, since some people prefer it on the window (being on top confuses me easily since I run alot of apps)
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CronoXG2



Joined: 25 Jun 2002
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2002 12:57 am    Post subject: Re: VGA Reply with quote

Amos Vryhof wrote:
I think that low color Skin would be perfect for EGA, but Standard VGA is 16 colors.... EGA is 8....


Perhaps a 640x400 mode in Seal for EGA support would be a good idea!

BadSector....that UI is nice, but the transparency should be optional....It gets annoying after awhile....

As for the MenuBar being at the top, perhaps that could be Optional, since some people prefer it on the window (being on top confuses me easily since I run alot of apps)


A menu bar at the top could also be a bad thing for high resolution users, since the advantage of infinite size is counterbalanced by the distance the mouse must move. Imagine moving from the bottom of the screen to the top at 1600x1200 resolution (even if SEAL won't get up there for some time) to go to file and save. Wouldn't that be annoying as hell?
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