Saturday, July 28, 2007

Gtk UI Designer,

At this moment I'm working on a new application for n800. It's a mythtv-frontend using lib gmyth. Last week I received this ui specification to implement it using Gtk:

When I received this specification the first thing I thought was to create a GtkWidget and re-implement the expose function for drawing each controls with these images. But after reading how Gtkrc and Gtk engines work, I discovered a lot of useful things which can be used to create this visual in my application without workarounds.

But now I have few other questions, is it correct to create new design specifications only for my application? Won't it break all usability? My concern is the user is adapted with the current theme and styles, and I will change lots of things in my application.

Maybe the correct way is create the application using the default Gtk controls and a new Gtk theme with these design specifications if the user choses it.

What you think?

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Anonymous marcelo eduardo said...

I could talk this to you in person but here it goes :

1) HIG are to be followed, but also to be broke when: a. you think you need to, for the sack of usability or b. when you want to differentiate your application from the rest or even c. when you think the default controls SUCK for finger / touchscreen interaction.

2) Nobody todays follows HIG 100% Gnome breaks it, apple breaks it and there it goes. Even Nokia breaks with Skype and raphsody for example. The point then becomes:

does the HIG makes it easier this flexible approach?

It's well known that users wants different experiences with applications, and they will prefer "a intuitive" but very nice and good looking application that breaks the rules to a intuitive using a boring / standard look feel.

So what's the borderline for that?

My questions today are also :

1) each client wants something new but this will fragment a lot how can we avoid this re using even this custom components (like apple is doing for example with cover flow on finder)


10:42 AM  

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