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View Full Version : teach-a-noob: Vista, OSX, Ubuntu... glam-wars



zornan
March 30th, 2009, 09:06 PM
here is vista: http://www.intelliadmin.com/images/Vista%20RTM.jpg

here is OSX: http://www.slipperybrick.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/10/mac-osx-leopard-available.jpg

here is Ubuntu: http://www.pendrivelinux.com/wp-content/uploads/ubuntu804.jpg


If ubuntu is trying to gain users from the everyday world, why are its default colors brown and grey? I get it, earth, africa and so forth, but the first thing I do after installing ubuntu is apply some themes so it doesn't look like I'm using a monochrome monitor. I'm embarassed to have friends install it for its poor very first impression value. Opensuse is bright, colorful and inviting. Mandriva looks sharp, modern and friendly. Then there is Ubuntu with the grey gnome toolbars, the three shades of brown for wallpaper and icons that look like they escaped from 1997. Sure you can customize it later, but first impressions are critical. Can someone help me with my understanding here?

damis648
March 30th, 2009, 09:10 PM
When Karmic Koala comes out in October, it's supposed to have a brand new desktop and theme. :popcorn:

zornan
March 30th, 2009, 09:15 PM
I sure hope so. The reason for my post is not a rant. I'm not a graphic designer or someone who know marketing, so I give Ubuntu theme designers the benifit of the doubt, but in my opinion, something needs to be done. But it could just be me, i dunno.

xakh
March 31st, 2009, 12:11 AM
I don't get why everyone hates the brown scheme. It feels so relaxing on my eyes! I feel like the Vista theme is assaulting me with gaudy colors, and the Mac theme is a boring, dull metallic theme. Aside from that, have you looked at the default themes it comes with? there are plenty to choose from in terms of looks.

Marlonsm
March 31st, 2009, 12:39 AM
Actually, I like the brown theme, it fells different from Windows, where everything (at least on XP) is blue.

And in a few mins you can customize that to anything you want ( including to look like Vista and OSX ). But for new users it's really nice to be greated with a good looking screen on their first log in. Hopefully Karmic will get it right.

praveenmarkandu
March 31st, 2009, 02:52 AM
there is nothing wrong with the brown theme. the problem is with ubuntu, its difficult to change to anything else if the user wanted to.

GTK and metacity dependancies arent met most of the time. there should be a better way to implement themes FULLY.

Merk42
March 31st, 2009, 11:35 PM
I sure hope so. The reason for my post is not a rant. I'm not a graphic designer or someone who know marketing, so I give Ubuntu theme designers the benifit of the doubt, but in my opinion, something needs to be done. But it could just be me, i dunno.

Well don't get your hopes up. I don't think they'll deliver, they never have in the past when they said they would.

s.fox
March 31st, 2009, 11:46 PM
And in a few mins you can customize that to anything you want ( including to look like Vista and OSX ). But for new users it's really nice to be greated with a good looking screen on their first log in. Hopefully Karmic will get it right.

I 100% agree with you.

Would a new comer to Ubuntu know that they could change the brown look? Would they even know how to? I am not so sure that they would. Koala has a lot of promises to live up to. Hope it delivers :D

Godly
April 2nd, 2009, 02:24 AM
Ubuntu? It;s free. They didn't waste time on designing the glam appearance, they just made it totally customizable. Again, it;s free and sweeeeeeeeeeet. I got Ubuntu on my join date here, and I;ve done more customizing on here than I ever did in windows.

Blerp
April 2nd, 2009, 12:07 PM
I've installed Kubuntu and it has a cheery blue desktop. I don't like the way Gnome looks, but that's not Ubuntu's fault. I don't think there's anything wrong with the brown theme. It's different, not the safe blue choice.

tommyhot
April 2nd, 2009, 04:49 PM
here is vista: http://www.intelliadmin.com/images/Vista%20RTM.jpg

here is OSX: http://www.slipperybrick.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/10/mac-osx-leopard-available.jpg

here is Kubuntu: http://martinnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/snapshot2.png


This tuesday I had a presentation about operating systems and graphical user interfaces and I showed people KDE 4.2. They were impressed with the default look and default features. So maybe it's time to make kubuntu default instead of ubuntu. Gnome looks like it hasn't changed for years so even if you make some ubuntu theme (I personaly like them) it won't impress almost anyone.

Incognito-Here
April 3rd, 2009, 08:06 AM
> This tuesday I had a presentation about operating systems and graphical user
> interfaces and I showed people KDE 4.2. They were impressed with the default look
> and default features. So maybe it's time to make kubuntu default instead of
> ubuntu. Gnome looks like it hasn't changed for years so even if you make some
> ubuntu theme (I personaly like them) it won't impress almost anyone.

The main mistake is to mix up usability and first impression. Vista's example proved the first is much more important than the second. The schemers can make their distribs themselves ;)

alex.rayu
April 3rd, 2009, 09:29 AM
A number of people including myself have been saying that Grey/Orange/Brown is objectively not a good collection of colors to run with. But it's not all as simple. Here are a few things to consider.

Yep. for a few objective reasons, current interface the is weak. But bright colors is not an indication of a great interface. One thing is installing a desktop, wowing the bright colors, and uninstalling, another is making it usability-friendly. There is a bunch of different designs in Gnome-look.org, that are very bright - that does not make them better. A part of the problem is the icons. Many icons needed for a system. Too expensive to redraw. Tango is the only bid set there is. Very weak as compared to MacOSX icons. Gnome 3 is in the future - it would only be wise to invest in 3.0 compatible designs and projects.

alex.rayu
April 3rd, 2009, 09:31 AM
> The main mistake is to mix up usability and first impression. Vista's example proved the first is much more important than the second. The schemers can make their distribs themselves ;)

Precisely! I had to switch to Vista a few times for a number of projects requiring Windows. And every time I saw it I felt "Wow!" But it was very soon, that when I started actually using it, I would feel, "Drats, where is my handy and obedient Ubuntu! Why do I have to fight with this thing, when Ubuntu really served in many smart ways?"

Merk42
April 3rd, 2009, 10:59 PM
Gnome 3 is in the future - it would only be wise to invest in 3.0 compatible designs and projects.

Well at this point not even GNOME knows what GNOME 3 is. Yes I've seen the mockup stuff, with the left hand bar, but even in that interface they haven't figured everything out. Personally I hope they go with all svg icons, that way one icon can be used for a sort of areas at different sizes.


Precisely! I had to switch to Vista a few times for a number of projects requiring Windows. And every time I saw it I felt "Wow!" But it was very soon, that when I started actually using it, I would feel, "Drats, where is my handy and obedient Ubuntu! Why do I have to fight with this thing, when Ubuntu really served in many smart ways?"

Have you tried Windows 7 yet? I'm dual booting that, actually using it right now, and there are quite a few usability things I wish were in Ubuntu.

days_of_ruin
April 3rd, 2009, 11:37 PM
Well at this point not even GNOME knows what GNOME 3 is. Yes I've seen the mockup stuff, with the left hand bar, but even in that interface they haven't figured everything out. Personally I hope they go with all svg icons, that way one icon can be used for a sort of areas at different sizes.



Have you tried Windows 7 yet? I'm dual booting that, actually using it right now, and there are quite a few usability things I wish were in Ubuntu.

Gnome 3 has a plan.http://live.gnome.org/ThreePointZero/Plan

Merk42
April 3rd, 2009, 11:42 PM
Gnome 3 has a plan.http://live.gnome.org/ThreePointZero/Plan

I know about all that. I'm just saying nothing has been finalized. As of this writing, you can't point to something and say "That's GNOME 3.0".

kayosiii
April 4th, 2009, 08:06 AM
Well I don't see flocks of users moving to windows vista because it is nice and shiny. Though it admittedly it is the first version of windows that doesn't look butt ugly. MacOS I think the current incarnation is the ugliest they have done. (Generally there stuff looks good (not the way I like to have my desktop but looks good)...

There is no one colour scheme that suits all people. If I had my way everything would be dark charcoal grey with light grey writing... Most Pro photography and AV Apps use this colour scheme for a reason but a casual user would probably find it too drab. The safest choice is some variation of blue but every body is doing that. I like the fact that you can glance at a ubuntu desktop and know straight away that it is Ubuntu.

The current brown is good because it doesn't draw too much attention to itself. It doesn't say oooh look at me - I am shiny. From a usability perspective the desktop should not be competing visually with the apps you are running. Things might be different from a marketing perspective.

I agree with alex... what is needed is more polish.... More things need to just work. The artwork including icons needs to be complete. A lot of the things that need fixing rely on upstream projects.

tommyhot
April 4th, 2009, 11:28 AM
Gnome 3 has a plan.http://live.gnome.org/ThreePointZero/Plan

I think nothing is gonna happen though. They didn't even add tab support to nautilus for many years, so do you expect them to change gnome itself? I don't think so.

airtonix
April 10th, 2009, 12:11 PM
Have you tried Windows 7 yet? I'm dual booting that, actually using it right now, and there are quite a few usability things I wish were in Ubuntu.

I have, and can't see anything that I don't already have via gnome-do, compiz and gnome.

windows, still can't mount ext3 partitions, still can't mount ssh servers, still does not provide true workspaces.

Still no apt.

not impressed.

Merk42
April 10th, 2009, 02:50 PM
I have, and can't see anything that I don't already have via gnome-do, compiz and gnome.

windows, still can't mount ext3 partitions, still can't mount ssh servers, still does not provide true workspaces.

Still no apt.

not impressed.

Clickable thumbnails
Jump lists
Aero Peek
Window snap
Libraries
Improved system tray

The average user isn't going to need ext 3 partitions or ssh servers, but if they do there are free downloads that allow these features.
True, they don't come with the installation of Windows 7, but GNOME-do doesn't come with the installation of Ubuntu.


I absolutely do not want to turn this into a Linux vs Windows discussion, because obviously there will be biased answers here. I was merely commenting on alex.rayu's dissatisfaction with Windows Vista. I was pointing out how Windows 7, unlike Vista, focused on usability rather than looks.

tommyhot
April 10th, 2009, 03:10 PM
I think some of these fascist linux users should grow up. Even if windows would make coffees, they'll still shout that it's lack of features.

I'm linux user for many years as well, but the times when I was bitching at windows are over. I just grew up..

Incognito-Here
April 10th, 2009, 11:58 PM
The average user isn't going to need ext 3 partitions or ssh servers, but if they do there are free downloads that allow these features.
It's not a good answer. The possibility doesn't make a desktop usable. It's obvious ubuntu is better just out of the box. This automatically makes it more usable in general, because new apps in windows makes it even more inconsistent, although even just out of the box it's quite eclectic.
Please, don't mix usability and design (Windows seben and vista design is just an amateurish stuff in my opinion). Usability is both the predictability of interface, the speed the novice can taught how to use it and speed of using the interface by expirienced user. Mac OS X is the best by this criteria, then Gnome, and only then windows (Windows 7 ~ Windows XP > Windows Vista).

Incognito-Here
April 11th, 2009, 12:01 AM
And don't talk about apps you missed in Ubuntu - it's another question (and show you are very stupid so can't destinguish :D)

lisati
April 11th, 2009, 12:07 AM
One of the key things for me is usability: if the particular tool lets me get on with the job, then great!

With the possible exception of one older machine (too old and tired, and probably not enough RAM), Ubuntu works well on my gear. I generally only switch to Windows when I have some video editing to do using tools that I haven't yet found a suitable Linux equivalent for.

(As for my older machine, I don't currently have the patience to put anything other than the Win98SE on it that it came with, even though I could probably get FreeDOS and OpenGem up and running in under an hour. But that's beside the point.)

Merk42
April 12th, 2009, 02:22 PM
It's not a good answer. The possibility doesn't make a desktop usable. It's obvious ubuntu is better just out of the box. This automatically makes it more usable in general, because new apps in windows makes it even more inconsistent, although even just out of the box it's quite eclectic.
Please, don't mix usability and design (Windows seben and vista design is just an amateurish stuff in my opinion). Usability is both the predictability of interface, the speed the novice can taught how to use it and speed of using the interface by expirienced user. Mac OS X is the best by this criteria, then Gnome, and only then windows (Windows 7 ~ Windows XP > Windows Vista).

Wait what? I mention how the average user isn't going to need ext3 and ssh which is why they aren't installed by default and then you go on that long thing about how Ubuntu is "obviously better", which "automatically makes it more usable in general" (nice circular logic there)
I'm guessing maybe the second paragraph wasn't directed at me and merely at the thread as a whole.


And don't talk about apps you missed in Ubuntu - it's another question (and show you are very stupid so can't destinguish :D)

What applications did I mention?
What was the different question?
I agree it was slightly off topic, since the thread is supposed to be about comparing simply the superficial between Vista, OS X and Ubuntu, but I said earlier I was replying to alex.rayu.

kayosiii
April 13th, 2009, 03:27 PM
I have yet to win7 in action.... I am not going to shell out for a windows upgrade unless somebody can give me a really good financial incentive to do so... At work we upgraded to Vista solely because we needed to address more than 3GB of ram in a single application and Vista 64bit sucks less than XP 64bit.... Not a single machine in our office has Aero switched on. I can't see us upgrading there in the foreseeable future. Would somebody care to share what that list of usability features actually do....

Can somebody tell me if there is a means of pinning windows to the top (like you can in KDE and GNOME)? Is there any sort of multiple workspace support? Is there anyway to switch windows Expose style just using the mouse? Is it possible/easy to use 3rd party themes?

I am not trying make out that KDE/Gnome is better because it has these features, They are just things that I would like to see work out of the box on windows. (particularly pin to top)

tommyhot
April 13th, 2009, 03:41 PM
Can somebody tell me if there is a means of pinning windows to the top (like you can in KDE and GNOME)? Is there any sort of multiple workspace support? Is there anyway to switch windows Expose style just using the mouse? Is it possible/easy to use 3rd party themes?

I am not trying make out that KDE/Gnome is better because it has these features, They are just things that I would like to see work out of the box on windows. (particularly pin to top)

Microsoft powertoys has multiple workspace support, but it's not installed by default though. Also there is expose like feature and many more in microsoft IntelliSense not installed by default as well. I guess it's because of European Union penalty fees. They kind of don't like monopols, so they are trying to force microsoft to not make windows that much usable out of box. At least in Europe.

Simian Man
April 13th, 2009, 03:46 PM
Ubuntu? It;s free. They didn't waste time on designing the glam appearance, they just made it totally customizable. Again, it;s free and sweeeeeeeeeeet. I got Ubuntu on my join date here, and I;ve done more customizing on here than I ever did in windows.

Fedora, OpenSuse and Mandriva are free too. Yet they don't look like crap.

Izek
April 14th, 2009, 07:38 PM
I currently like the default theme as the default. if I need to get a cooler theme, I just get one. That simple.

Merk42
April 14th, 2009, 09:10 PM
I currently like the default theme as the default. if I need to get a cooler theme, I just get one. That simple.

Although in your case, you like the default, the (tired) argument is that you shouldn't have to get a cooler one, it should be there by default.

Mister LinOx
April 15th, 2009, 12:49 AM
I actually like the brown theme, and it was what made me look into it more. I enjoyed the fact that it took one step away from glossy and took a earth-like brown theme. Of course, I have nothing against glossy, but I like them both I guess. I'm going to get ubuntu with the Xfce desktop environment instead of gnome soon. My brother is bringing over a disc. Been so long since I've even touched a desktop with any form of Linux installed.

airtonix
April 23rd, 2009, 12:56 AM
Clickable thumbnails
Jump lists
Aero Peek
Window snap
Libraries
Improved system tray

COuld you clarify what you mean by these entries?

Clickable thumbnails
examples, or i assume you mean, window previews from the taskbar. which compiz does.
Jump lists
gnome-do does this
Aero Peek
compiz has this
Window snap
compiz has window snap in about 5 different forms.
Libraries
media libraries?
Improved system tray
system tray is missing from gnome-do, but i'm not sure how it's "improved" from winxp...seemed exactly the same.

Ticketoride
April 23rd, 2009, 01:12 AM
windows, still can't mount ext3 partitions
I doubt very much they'd be overly thrilled fielding Linux Support.

The best Way to show something does not exist is by ignoring it.

Merk42
April 23rd, 2009, 01:19 AM
COuld you clarify what you mean by these entries?

Clickable thumbnails
examples, or i assume you mean, window previews from the taskbar. which compiz does.
Jump lists
gnome-do does this
Aero Peek
compiz has this
Window snap
compiz has window snap in about 5 different forms.
Libraries
media libraries?
Improved system tray
system tray is missing from gnome-do, but i'm not sure how it's "improved" from winxp...seemed exactly the same.

Sure I'll clarify

Clickable thumbnails
Well unlike Compiz, in Windows 7 you can click on the thumbnail to bring that window in focus, or un-minimize it (AFAIK a minimized window won't even preview) you can also close the window via the preview with the X that appears in the upper right corner of the preview.
There's also an API where a multiple tabbed program would have multiple preview thumbnails. It's in IE8, but not yet into Firefox, though they have that planned.
Jump lists
Meaning you can right click on the shortcut/minimized window and get common tasks, like bookmarks, or recently used items for that application.
Even if GNOME-DO does it, I was only comparing things on a default installation of both Windows and Ubuntu.
Aero Peek
Rolling over a preview, highlights what application you want (by making others transparent) a part on the extreme right makes all windows transparent
Window snap
I don't mean snapping windows to each other if you misunderstood. I mean Pulling it to the top and it maximizes (I've only noticed the inverse to be true in compiz) as well as moving a window to the right has it take up the right-half of the screen, and moving to the left has it take up the left half. You can also double click on the up/down resize arrows and it'll fill the whole height, but keep the width.
Libraries
It's more like pre-saved searches. A media library is an example, it could be Music, but the files could be all over the place on the drive.
Improved system tray
You can reorder the items, as well as tell it how often a particular one shows (always / never / only notifications)

You can do a quick youtube search for Windows 7 Features and see some examples.