Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 30th Mar 2007 20:44 UTC, submitted by theosib
Linux The founder of the Open Graphics Project writes: "Good design and usability are very important. I haven't paid enough attention to the discussions between Linus and GNOME developers, so I can't address it directly. But what I can say is that a learning curve is not a bad thing. While it's good to think about the total novice, it's even more important to have consistent and logical mechanisms. This way, if someone has to learn something new to use the computer, they have to learn it only once. This is why I think it's good that Apple and Microsoft have UI development guides that encourage developers to make their apps act consistently with other apps in areas where their functionalities conceptually overlap. And this is where I start to get disappointed with GNU/X11/Linux systems."
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RE: UI guidelines?
by Luminair on Sat 31st Mar 2007 02:02 UTC in reply to "UI guidelines?"
Luminair
Member since:
2007-03-30

So if Microsoft and Apple have these UI development guides, why is it that every release of itunes looks different to the rest of OSX? Office XP had it's own menus, then 2003 went all blue. And Windows Media Player always looked different - then when they invented a new flashy UI, they gave WMP11 a different one again!

Yeah, okay, Linux is a long way from perfect in that regard, but if it's going to be criticised for it's inconsistency, can we at least find something to compare it to that is consistent itself?


You make a good point at the start. While they do have standards to adhere to, even they don't do it perfectly.

But the important thing here is that you notice when they go wrong -- the Office apps using off the wall window colors, WMP looking crazy, etc. Standards matter, and sticking to standards matters. That's the message to take home from all this.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: UI guidelines?
by butters on Sat 31st Mar 2007 07:56 in reply to "RE: UI guidelines?"
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

I guess the author of this article is unaware of the GNOME Human Interface Guidelines (HIG), which must be followed in order for an application to make it into the default GNOME desktop suite:

http://developer.gnome.org/projects/gup/hig/2.0/

KDE has a similar project that's a major part of the development process for KDE4:

http://wiki.openusability.org/guidelines/index.php/Main_Page

Free software desktops have a great advantage in the area of UI consistency because we have the notion of a cooperative community. In proprietary land, it's all about branding, marketing, and differentiation. There's absolutely no motivation for consistency. In free software, following the HIG can help expand your userbase significantly.

Reply Parent Score: 5