UI themes (was Re: Serious Squeak (other "survey"))

Bert Freudenberg bert at freudenbergs.de
Sun Oct 15 11:07:10 UTC 2006

Am 15.10.2006 um 10:00 schrieb Andreas Raab:

> Bill Schwab wrote:
>> At the risk of sounding a bit hostile, Jim Benson "put some damn  
>> effort
>> into it" and was treated horribly IMHO.  I know it is not a popular
>> statement (or at least it wasn't the last time I pointed it out), but
>> there is still a glass ceiling in terms of affecting Squeak.  If you
>> want people to "put some damn effort" into Squeak, the leaders  
>> needs to
>> "put some damn effort" into reviewing their work.  Reject it if you
>> will, but do not ignore it.
> ... the "mainstream" cannot necessarily cater to every subgroup. In  
> Jim's case it was pretty clear that this is work that will be  
> interesting for a particular subgroup of the community - people who  
> need 100% Windows looking apps. Jim did a *great* job at this but  
> the simple fact of the matter is that Squeak community is roughly  
> 30/30/30 between Windows, Mac, Unix and only a subset of the 30%  
> windows users really wants Windows looking apps. Meaning that  
> Zurgle might be interesting for (probably less than) 10% of the  
> overall users of Squeak. Personally, I don't see how Jim could have  
> been treated "less horribly" other than the people who care about  
> the native looking stuff to pick it up and help him. That he didn't  
> get much support -to me- is a clear sign that the percentage of  
> people who want Windows look is a lot less than 10%.

IIRC Zurgle was not about Windows look but a general skinning  
framework, no? It was just that grabbing Windows bitmaps was easiest  
for Jim at the time, but he had a second theme, scifi-ish I think.

At the time (1999/2000) several skinning projects were started. I  
contributed "Fur" (mouse-ish for "Skin"), which in Squeak tradition  
was about being able to change colors per window (I started with  
scrollbars, see http://wwwisg.cs.uni-magdeburg.de/~bert/squeak/fur/ 
fur_prealpha.gif). Others like Jim's or Stephan's were "regular"  
bitmap themes (http://minnow.cc.gatech.edu/squeak/1114). None really  
took off, though.

I think a new skinning framework (or resurrecting one of these) would  
be very worth-while. It *must* have an import capability for some  
existing themes so we get a decent look early, because the community  
lacks designers with spare time.

I should also mention that in the Sophie project a XUL-based UI  
skinning framework was developed, and impara's designers put very  
nice-looking graphics into it. I bet there is a screenshot somewhere ...

- Bert -

More information about the Squeak-dev mailing list