new interface

The interface, modeling, 3d editing tools, import/export, feature requests, etc

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ch
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new interface

Post by ch » Sat Jan 08, 2005 1:34 pm

is the new interface going into blenderCVS or just tuhopuu3?
i think it would be great in bfblender, because it make more sense :D
http://www.web-play-3d.de
German site with Blender Tutorials

matt_e
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Post by matt_e » Sat Jan 08, 2005 6:07 pm

Of course I hope so, but right now, the focus is just on getting it 'finished' and working well, with a properly written proposal, docs, etc. Then those other sorts of decisions can be made. But it's very good to hear feedback, whether it's positive like yours or constructive negative feedback too.

Cheers

halibut
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Post by halibut » Sun Jan 09, 2005 1:26 am

ok, I will try to make this as constructive as possible, but it is hard because I feel the nature of the impletmentation is leading away from this:

Compact interface


Curved edges do not make for tight buttons, is there anyway a check box could be implied without the big "check me" box? How about checkboxes have a shading type that makes it look like a toggle button? I suppose this would be quite hard

Don't get me wrong, it is great work, and good for certain, especially new users. I think I have just answered my own question really, as the other less intuitive types are still going to always be there :)

matt_e
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Post by matt_e » Sun Jan 09, 2005 2:02 am

halibut wrote:I feel the nature of the impletmentation is leading away from this:

Compact interface
No, not at all. It's more about more efficient use of space - something that's lacking in the current layout. Compactness and keeping a 'dashboard' overview of what's going on has been a primary aim - a particular example is in the material buttons, which now (in still a WIP state) gets all the texture editing controls on the one screen instead of 3 tabs of panels: http://mke3.net/blender/interface/layou ... lwip03.png
Curved edges do not make for tight buttons
As for the curves, there are few reasons why it doesn't really make a practical difference to the use of space. The thing is that white space is not in such a short supply that every fraction of a millimetre counts. There will always be space between buttons, and as any graphic designer knows, 'white space' is crucial to allow visual grouping, weighting and direction. The only time it could potentially make a significant difference is if every button in Blender was crammed in like the 2.36 Mesh Tools panel, which would be a bit of a nightmare. Secondly, the amount of 'lost space' is not as big as it may seem anyway, since the widest parts of the button is where the text is anyway. It's mostly the empty space that's rounded off, and the round shaded theme uses exactly the same code to determine whether to show text or clip it off as the other buttons (barring the toggles that is). I think curves are something that people get worried about easily since it's something obvious they see it and think, "oh, the buttons are 3% smaller in the corners - lost space is bad!" but when you look in the big picture, it's really not an issue.

As for checkboxes, yes, these have less space, that's true. If you can come up with a way to make them look like a check box without looking like a check box, you're welcome to share :) The arguments for why this has been done is in the wiki, and I feel it's definitely a positive tradeoff to make, particularly since with a redesigned layout, it can fit just fine.

In any case, both these issues can also be 'solved' just by changing the theme :)

Anyway, don't let this seem like I'm shouting you down or being dismissive of the feedback - it's good. I'm just giving you the arguments and justification for these changes.

Money_YaY!
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Post by Money_YaY! » Sun Jan 09, 2005 6:18 am

neat but pointless. I still want drag out windows menus. I mean they look just like the floating window why not just rip them out to then?

theeth
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Post by theeth » Sun Jan 09, 2005 9:19 am

Money_YaY! wrote:neat but pointless.
I'm sure broken will appreciate you calling his work useless. Really, it's the best way to make yourself appreciated... :roll:

Martin
Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

Money_YaY!
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Post by Money_YaY! » Sun Jan 09, 2005 5:11 pm

theeth wrote:
Money_YaY! wrote:neat but pointless.
I'm sure broken will appreciate you calling his work useless. Really, it's the best way to make yourself appreciated... :roll:

Martin
:p Ok I was to rash.
But what about a gui builder tool then ? This kind of stuff is best left to tools that let you visually build the gui like with a vector program of sorts. Instead of the code it all in so only a coder can create the gui.

Example would be use Illustrator to make the template buttons and import that into coordinates somehow. Then have a tool that allows a WYSIWYG to place out the buttons<--Before running Blender-->. It could aleviate positioning a lot and allow custom designs.

BUt whatever I have seen this question asked before.

gabio
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Post by gabio » Sun Jan 09, 2005 5:41 pm

long ago a though about this , as it would be a cool time saver. a browse button next to the text field where you enter datablock name.
instead we could just click on it and a databrowse window would open (in the right dir if possible, ex:open in curve dir to search curve).
though it was not planned in you interface update. It would fit with the general recode.
where is an example:
Example

matt_e
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Post by matt_e » Sun Jan 09, 2005 10:12 pm

Money_YaY! wrote:BUt whatever I have seen this question asked before.
Yes, by you. And people have told you repeatedly that it's not going to happen. There seems to be a pattern here ;)

matt_e
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Post by matt_e » Sun Jan 09, 2005 10:17 pm

gabio wrote:long ago a though about this , as it would be a cool time saver. a browse button next to the text field where you enter datablock name.
Yes, I actually tried this one recently for the constraint panels, but failed. I got the menu working, showing the list of all available objects, but couldn't get it in the text field. I'm sure someone like Ton could do it though - there's a lot of similar code elsewhere in Blender. I'll try and remember to bug him about it when I give him all my other help requests :)

ilac
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Post by ilac » Sun Jan 09, 2005 11:04 pm

broken wrote: I'm sure someone like Ton could do it though - there's a lot of similar code elsewhere in Blender. I'll try and remember to bug him about it when I give him all my other help requests :)
...while you're pestering Ton please don't forget the problem you had with the Caps lock key not working as a record mode button! :wink:

Thanks :D

Eternl_Knight
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Post by Eternl_Knight » Mon Jan 10, 2005 3:02 am

Heya broken,

I'm wondering why the idea of a "customizable GUI" is not being developed. Not starting an argument, but asking a serious question. I think the idea has merit and would like to know what is stopping it.

Thanks.
Last edited by Eternl_Knight on Mon Jan 10, 2005 4:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

sunray
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Post by sunray » Mon Jan 10, 2005 3:36 am

The new interface is neat and Compact .
The improve of interface is more important than add some new function.
Thanks broken! :)

joeri
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Post by joeri » Mon Jan 10, 2005 11:31 am

Whats wrong with non-constructive negative feedback?


"The improve of interface is more important than add some new function."
I don't agree. I rather have some animation features. Ofcourse some are hard to implement because of faulty existing interface.

"I'm sure broken will appreciate you calling his work useless."
But it's hard to see what the advantages are. For people who use blender for a long time new interface means learning the interface all over again. That's spending time on something with no (or little) gain. Sure it's nice to select themes, to change all the colors and shapes of buttons, if you are a GIU designer or don't have any 3d work to do. For people making tutorials, reading tutorials change of interface is only a good idea if it adds functionality.
Now, luckaly sometime it does, and we can't stick to the same stuff forever.

There is another little comment I like to make on this. I don't need to agree with all the decisions that people make to appreciate that they are doing it. I don't alway appreciate what they are doing, but I do appreciate that they are doing it.

"I'm just giving you the arguments and justification for these changes."
They are good to read.

"Secondly, the amount of 'lost space' is not as big as it may seem anyway"
Fact vs Emotion. I'm not sure how much the facts matter.
The blender interface now is being designed, beyond the interface of the OS it runs on, this gives the users a standard 'taste'. That can influence the work they make, or just don't like the taste.

I think your work is to candy sweet for my taste, but thanks for all the work you are putting into it broken, I appriciate it very much. And no, I'm not being sarcastic.

matt_e
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Post by matt_e » Mon Jan 10, 2005 3:38 pm

joeri wrote:Whats wrong with non-constructive negative feedback?
It's rarely useful at best, and annoying and frustrating at worst. Constructive feedback should be encouraged, particularly in open source when people aren't being paid and volunteers won't just shut up and do something because their boss tells them to. It's reasonable to expect people to put in a little bit of work themselves if they want to be taken seriously and get what they want.
"The improve of interface is more important than add some new function."
I don't agree. I rather have some animation features. Ofcourse some are hard to implement because of faulty existing interface.
Not only that, but open source makes this a non-issue. Volunteer time is not a commodity that can be divided up and shifted around from project to project. There's no way I would or could work on animation tools, and there's just as little likelihood of other developers working on interface. The fact that I may choose to spend time on this doesn't preclude other people from doing other things at the same time.
"I'm sure broken will appreciate you calling his work useless."
But it's hard to see what the advantages are. For people who use blender for a long time new interface means learning the interface all over again.
"Learning the interface all over again" - oh come on, don't be melodramatic. It's not a different application, it's just growing. I'm sure most users can deal with these sorts of changes quite comfortably. They did with 2.3 and they can again. It's not as if with a new release, every experienced user is suddenly reduced to newbie status and has to start from scratch. And, as they did after 2.3, after the initial surprise wears off, people just might come to appreciate the changes and be glad that they happened.

I think you have trouble seeing this from other people's perspectives. Obviously people like you, who have been around since Blender's very birth, are not the average user - you have an inherently biased point of view. Perhaps you are completely comfortable with the way Blender currently, or used to, work, looks and feels and think it's the pinnacle of perfection. Then there are other people who are currently satisfied with Blender, but who would still appreciate improvements. Then there are users who are frustrated with some current things and want something that works better, or easier to understand, or more logical. Then there are people just starting out, who could be helped by something that's organised better, with clearer feedback and hints. Then there are people that would like to use Blender, but who aren't prepared to spend the time getting their head around all the idiosyncrasies and obtuseness and just go and use a different app that doesn't suffer from these problems. There can be advantages for all these different people. People like yourself with years of experience and familiarity, who know all Blender's ins and outs should not be the only people considered in these sorts of decisions. At the risk of totally derailing this thread into off-topic or flamewars, I'd like to humbly mention that at least from my obviously biased point of view, the lack of consideration (interface-wise) for other types of people than those in the 'inner circle' was one of the major factors in Blender's past commercial failures.
That's spending time on something with no (or little) gain. Sure it's nice to select themes, to change all the colors and shapes of buttons, if you are a GIU designer or don't have any 3d work to do.
Ho ho, very funny. I hope you're not insinuating that I don't actually use 3D and just play with things. My clients and I would find that quite amusing.

It's the themes that allow progress to happen while at the same time still pleasing more conservative types. In my perfect world, there would be no customisable themes or anything, but the fact that we're having this conversation is proof that people have different opinions on this, and it's nice to satisfy as many people as possible - hence, choice.
For people making tutorials, reading tutorials change of interface is only a good idea if it adds functionality. Now, luckaly sometime it does, and we can't stick to the same stuff forever.
This is not just true for interface changes, it happens all over Blender. Most of the older tutorials on the net are completely out of date, from just the changes in tools and workflow, and for the better. This is a pretty weak argument for conservatism - people will always be making tutorials, and I think many users would agree that it's a positive thing that so much of the Blender 2.3 guide has been made redundant through Blender's advances.

Another side-effect too is that new things (in interface, and other areas) can make certain tutorials unnecessary. Many of the older Blender tutorials are just a sequence of steps, rote memorisation: "do this obscure thing, then press this key, then press this button way over here, then do this.", mainly because so much of Blender was previously very hard to grasp and explore, those sorts of tutorials were necessary. If we can make things more intuitive, easy to find, streamlined workflow, so that people don't need to read such tutorials to understand it, I think that's a very positive thing.
There is another little comment I like to make on this. I don't need to agree with all the decisions that people make to appreciate that they are doing it. I don't alway appreciate what they are doing, but I do appreciate that they are doing it.

"I'm just giving you the arguments and justification for these changes."
They are good to read.
That's good to hear, thanks. I don't care, or expect everyone to agree with everything. That would make the world a very boring place! Though disagreements on their own aren't very interesting without well reasoned justification for them.
The blender interface now is being designed, beyond the interface of the OS it runs on, this gives the users a standard 'taste'. That can influence the work they make, or just don't like the taste.
What do you mean now? Blender has always had a standard 'taste'. In my opinion the older taste is ugly and distracting. And I don't know what you meant by it, but it's funny you mention 'emotion'. You might like to have a look at a book called Emotional Design by Donald Norman.
I think your work is to candy sweet for my taste, but thanks for all the work you are putting into it broken, I appriciate it very much. And no, I'm not being sarcastic.
Thanks, my sarcasm detector doesn't work that well these days ;) Well, that's fine, you're entitled to your opinion or taste, and because of themes, nobody's forcing you to use it. And if that choice isn't good enough for you, the source is there. You can teach yourself to code C from scratch, change Blender yourself, and let other people agree with you and then include those changes. That's what I did.

Cheers

Phew.. I hope I don't have to write many more enormous posts like that!

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