Linked by Eugenia Loli on Wed 17th Nov 2004 07:44 UTC
Zeta BeOSFrance features a review of Zeta Neo. ZetaNews has a translation.
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v I miss BeOS
by Jackson on Wed 17th Nov 2004 09:37 UTC
English?
by Matt Lacey on Wed 17th Nov 2004 10:03 UTC

Is there an English version of this review anywhere?

@English?
by XemonerdX on Wed 17th Nov 2004 10:49 UTC

Like Eugenia said, use Babelfish to translate it to English. But then again, it is Babelfish, so don't expect decent results (bad grammar to the point where sentences don't make sense, words that aren't translated at all, out-of-context translations, etc).
The screenshots look very promising tho!

Native controls
by zele on Wed 17th Nov 2004 11:29 UTC

Looking at that player on the screenshots...
I understand that some people love player skins. But why use custom GUI controls for the playlist and the video frame? The buttons, the icons, the scrolls, everything looks so un-BeOS. Application skins and different GUI controls is the last thing I want in BeOS/Zeta (I have enough of this in Linux)

Provide a choice to use either a skinned player controls or a minimalistic native GUI. Use the native GUI for everything else (playlists, dialogs...). And everybody will be happy.

Re: Native controls
by Mat on Wed 17th Nov 2004 11:48 UTC

Speaking of controls... perhaps I am just too used to my old trusty R5 install, but the more I look at Zeta screenshots the less I like its default controls. Droplists and checkboxes with their blue-something are especially hard for me to swallow.

Screenshots
by AndrewG on Wed 17th Nov 2004 12:03 UTC

Show a truly hideous interface.

Interface
by bogomipz on Wed 17th Nov 2004 12:20 UTC

I absolutely agree about the interface comments. The media player in the screenshot looks plain awfull. Also the default window borders in Zeta are 10 steps back from R5.

new media app
by skiBUM on Wed 17th Nov 2004 12:41 UTC

such a weird decision to use a new interface style for the media app. It's bad, stick to one style!

What?
by Cron0 on Wed 17th Nov 2004 13:22 UTC

Isn't 100 bucks a little expansive for something that is still in Beta/Alpha/Pre-Release stage? And what if it still doesn't support my video card like in RC3? They should allow us to try it, a demo or something....

re: English?
by Anonymous on Wed 17th Nov 2004 13:30 UTC

Go to tools then translate and poof.... you pages is translated. Well, you have to be using mozilla....

Ick
by aviva on Wed 17th Nov 2004 13:43 UTC

Wow, the media player looks horrible, and so do the fonts. I loved BeOS back in the R5 days, but I can't find much compelling any more

Translation
by Treza on Wed 17th Nov 2004 14:39 UTC

Here is a very rough translation for french deficient readers from a limited english writer.
( Original text copyrighted by BeOS France )




I spent the night with Zeta Neo

No, it is not what you are thinking of! I've received last week the latest version of Zeta in a pretty DVD case...

Although already tested at BeGeistert013, I received last week the boxed Zeta Neo CD (still not accompanied by the great tee-shirt promised with the RC1 ).
I was astonished to see the box written in German but, I figured out afterwards that the paper is printed on both sides, wich was already the case with the RC1. Nothing changed on this text but the recommended minimal configuration, from a 90MHz Pentium with 16Mo RAM and 400 Mb of hard disk to a 200 MHz Pentium with 32 Mo RAM and 600 Mo of hard disk, I hope such limitations can't prevent you from switching to Zeta ! ( Also about the packaging, it would be a good idea to update the screen captures which still show the Origin theme which was removed from Zeta since RC2, and the thumbnailed images in the tracker, still unavailables without Thumbnailer)

The new first boot screen is much prettier that with the RC2 and nearly the same as for RC3.
'It is very clean and rather pretty'

Startup image
The installation software is nearly completely localised. Only the software descriptions are not localised. It's a bad thing for a newcomer which would expect more explanations ( For someone which have never used BeOS or MacOS, "Handbrake" doesn't mean anything).
The installation is not faster than in the preceding versions and is held without concern. After tuning bootman parameters (still in English), I restart the computer.

Starting is a little bit faster but stays slower that an original BeOS R5. In the Deskbar menus, many softwares were removed, mainly those with stability concerns in previous versions. One could regret their deletion instead of doing the hard work of fixing them. Other things have been added, like the new MediaPlayer (code name Champion) and the Personnal Settings panel which grown bigger gradually. The network configuration tool has now an easier step by step interface.
Another problem with the system configuration panel is that it still lacks some of the original tools from the R5 (I'm thinking of Keymap or BeMenu).
For these last two tools, the french localisation is very bad and inexistant for MediaPlayer (the patch available on BeosFrance fixes that problem, along with other software like Expander).
Still about localisation, once that the BeosFrance patch is installed, more software now uses the locale kit from Zeta, and it is a Good Thing.

New MediaPlayer

Online radios available directly from the deskbar

Some problems with CifsMounter, directory sharing software, wich does not remember anymore the folder parameters and makes Tracker hang when one tries to share NTFS folders. No enhancements for JukeBox, still unuseable even for the most bug tolerant of us. I still miss the automatic thumbnailing of images in the Tracker.

On the USB side, there was a real improvement, e.g the support of the USB 2.0 and the automatic hot plug mounting of removeable disks and USB keys onto the Desktop. Alas, the old USB controller of my machine is still not supported and probably never will.

Tracker SVG seems much more responsive than in the previous versions, for BFS, FAT32 or NTFS partitions altoegether. One approaches the speed of a tracker R5 to share on a long list of files on disc FAT32/NTFS ( It's tolerable, especially when you're accustomed to Windows )

In the end, this Zeta RC4 does not bring any big enhancement except the better USB support. The new MediaPlayer desappoints quickly by its unstability and its unfinished aspect ( stuck in repreat, no drag-n-drom screen captures anymore, and the somewhat abusive suppression of some softwares ( the old MediaPlayer, Keymap, BeMenu, ... ). One feels very optimistic at the very beginning but quickly the 'unfinished' feeling becomes prevalent.

It is a personal opinion but I don't understant why Zeta does not try to fix the existing tools instead of adding gadget tools ( Media Player, Online radio list, SkyOrb ... )

Let's hope that the announced Service Pack 1 will fix all these small concerns. If you have never used BeOS or Zeta, don't hesitate, Neo is more up to date than R5 and is a good product for those which wishes to pass from R5 to Zeta.

For the most demanding users ( you think I am like that ? ;) , I do not think that Neo will make you switch definitively.

Article written by BeosFrance 15-11-2004

screens
by snyd on Wed 17th Nov 2004 14:46 UTC

interface design is not a strength of yellowtab like driver and kernel prgramming. But its only a RC the final version will be a lot better.

Zeta
by ar on Wed 17th Nov 2004 14:59 UTC

I hope it'll improve since I don't think this Zeta is anywhere near to where Be originally wanted it to be ;) . I'll stick with me good old R5.

re: screens
by Syrek on Wed 17th Nov 2004 15:09 UTC

[quote]interface design is not a strength of yellowtab like driver and kernel prgramming. But its only a RC the final version will be a lot better.[/quote]

I looks like you wrote this to convince yourself, do you think yellowtab suddenly will see the light in GUI-design. The only "improvements" in the GUI I can live with is the control panel. If I look at these designs the only thing I can think of, is that an windows programmer did all the designs.

I have a strong believe skinning is to be controlled by the OS not in the aplication.

Something total different, media player is a third party aplication. They should focus on the OS and try to contact the so much needed third party aplication designers, to make Zeta recommended software and include those in the install. I rather see them work on the OS then reinventing the wheel and make it worse.

re: screens
by Andrewg on Wed 17th Nov 2004 15:19 UTC

kernel programming

Except that the don't have the kernel code so are not coding anything in the kernel. As far as drivers go they have not done much either. I realise USB2, but not much else.

ew
by helf on Wed 17th Nov 2004 15:20 UTC

Those screenshots looks horrible!

I think I'll stick with my customized r5 install. ;) Zeta is a waste of money for the most part.

Decors
by Thom Holwerda on Wed 17th Nov 2004 15:50 UTC

Me, being a long-time BeOS fan/user, aren't happy with these new widgets either. I do like the new BeOS inspired decors they use for normal apps ( http://www.beosfrance.com/images/articles/zetaneo_thumb.jpg ), but I hate the ones they made for those new applications. I hope they can be altered.

I prefer progress, but inconsistency is everything but progress.

And no matter what so many people say: keep up the good work yT! I'm very happy with my Zeta install, and I still believe that the BeOS community should support yT, instead of flaming them. yT helps the development of BeOS, and that's always a good thing.

Thom
by Buck on Wed 17th Nov 2004 15:54 UTC

Geez, Thom, you're incosistent...

5 years later...
by Mike on Wed 17th Nov 2004 16:08 UTC

So, 5 years (or more?) after BeOS, they replaced the spinning teapot with a shiny clock/watch thingy. Seriously, what's up with that? In the BeOS time it was neat, because it showed how powerfull BeOS was on your 1999 hardware, but today you don't need those show-off applets.

RE: Decors
by bogomipz on Wed 17th Nov 2004 16:10 UTC

What?!? You like the radioactive-looking tabs? They're awful in my eyes. Like I've mentioned in other contexts before; one should be very careful about using any kind of glass effects, otherwise they will bring an amateurish look to your interface.

BTW; the WinXP-ripoff scrollbars are ok, except I don't really feel that they fit in.

@treza
by Anonymous on Wed 17th Nov 2004 18:34 UTC

Thanks for the French-English translation.

Neo and Zeta
by anonymouse on Wed 17th Nov 2004 18:55 UTC

For BeOS technology (and enthusiasm) to survive it must be able to be installed on contemporary hardware. I support Zeta because it offers a path of installation on new equipment.

I installed Neo on a P4 3G box from Dell and it installed pretty well. Install went smoothy but there was one conflict that popped up. I seem to have fixed so that pretty much everything seems to be working well. It is vital to be able to have successful installations or the curiosity people still hold for BeOS will be overwhelmed by painful installation processes.

Zeta not only offers a bit of competition for the efforts to recreate a BeOS-like product but at this point Zeta critically supports the platform as hardware development continues to push forward.

My install of RC 2 had been running continuously for 90 days when I rebooted to install Neo. I am pretty happy to have available what Zeta offers.

Certainly there are opportunities to look to and problems to overcome but I look forward to what both Zeta and Haiku offer in the future.

looks inconsistent and non-pro.
by Andi on Wed 17th Nov 2004 19:41 UTC

Why is every GUI-Design trying to copy that shiny, glossy aqua-look? It's annoying and has nothing to do with professional gui-design.

Let the GUI be effective, reduced and lean. Offer massive functionality instead of cooking eye-candy soup.

For example, look at some AKAI or Revox Audio-Machines, they know about reduced and clear UI (a machine has an UI too, in hardware...) ...

My only hope is that after all that fx-crap is done a thousand times people might concentrate on the core of GUIs again.

ps. i'm not against skinning / theming, if it can be done systemwide and consistent.

I would prefer
by DF on Wed 17th Nov 2004 20:56 UTC

that they work on getting "supported" hardware to actually work. Or, don't advertise something as being "suported" when in fact it really isn't. How about that for a great idea?

RE: bogomipz
by Thom Holwerda on Wed 17th Nov 2004 21:23 UTC

What?!? You like the radioactive-looking tabs? They're awful in my eyes. Like I've mentioned in other contexts before; one should be very careful about using any kind of glass effects, otherwise they willbring an amateurish look to your interface.


Yup. I like them. And in case you don't know, you can easily switch back to the standard R5 decors. They are included.

RE: screens
by Julian on Wed 17th Nov 2004 23:04 UTC

The only "improvements" in the GUI I can live with is the control panel. If I look at these designs the only thing I can think of, is that an windows programmer did all the designs.

They ruined the preference apps! They windows-ified everything , not just the looks. And it's damn slow compared to R5. So practically all yellowtab is doing is making BeOS shit.
The only thing they did which is good for BeOS was leting one of the Haiku developers attend Kansai Open Source.

RE: RE: bogomipz
by Kancept on Thu 18th Nov 2004 02:44 UTC

"And in case you don't know, you can easily switch back to the standard R5 decors. They are included."

I wouldn't call it standard R5 decors, cuz you can't move the slidey tab, so it's all just a pretty factor. Slidey tabs forever!!!!

Slidey tabs
by sasquatch666 on Thu 18th Nov 2004 05:17 UTC

Funny thing is ...I remember using a BeOS theme in linux awhile back(it was either in KDE or Enlightenment)where the slidey tabs actually worked and the windows behaved in a very BeOS-like manner aside from the fact that everything was laughably dog-slow compared to a real BeOS install.My point here is if this can be made to work under a totally foriegn environment like linux why cant it be brought back to it's native environment BeOS?

is it BeOS or Windows? I can't tell.
by rain on Thu 18th Nov 2004 08:22 UTC

One of the many things I hate about Windows is the incosistancy, and now yT will try to bring it into the BeOS world?
I'm perfectly OK with custom widgets, I mean the original mediaplayer doesn't get its widgets out of the box either, but at least it fits nicely with the rest of the OS. Champion, no matter how good it is, just doesn't fit.

If yT had access to the sourcecode they would be able to change the default looks of the widgets instead of trying to improve it on app to app basis.

If both Gnome and KDE can pull this off, why can't yT?

Unprofetional
by Pier Luigi Fiorini on Thu 18th Nov 2004 08:34 UTC

Even SkyOS looks more profetional