[ubuntu-art] hardy gtk theme

Mikkel Kamstrup Erlandsen mikkel.kamstrup at gmail.com
Tue Nov 6 21:57:10 GMT 2007

On 06/11/2007, Günther Beyer <contact at guentherbeyer.de> wrote:
> Hey all.
> This is my first atempt to activly join an open source project, although
> I'm using Ubuntu for about two years by now.
> Short intro: My Name is Günther Beyer, I'm an interface-designer from
> Germany, using Gimp and Inkscape, doing icons, illustrations and mockups
> of all kinds.
> Here are my thoughts on the Hardy theme:
> First of all I followed the discussion between the two main approches -
> The Mac like interface from Neil J Patel and the darker theme derived
> from Ubuntustudio. I wonder, why we should at any time imitate Vista or
> Leopard. Why not use the best of both worlds and add a little extra
> Ubuntu-linux flavour? If we want Ubuntu to look like Leopard, why not
> just wait for Kubuntu featuring KDE 4 - compare:
> http://pinheiro-kde.blogspot.com/2007/11/decisionsdecisionsdecisions-so-many.html
> http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=382776013&amp;size=o
> http://cache.gizmodo.com/assets/resources/2006/07/02%20Peek.jpg
> I think we should go down the other way and try a darker theme with the
> style and astetics of Neils mockups. There were many of my friends, who
> went from Windows to Ubuntu, just because of thouse fancy 3D effects.
> Why not try to repeat this again? As somebody truly pointet out, that
> new users are drawn to a desktop because of its looks, not if the
> usability is much better than the competitors ones, see Vista. The
> transparencies are horrible concerning interaction, but still today
> people tell me how great Vista looks and how much they love it.
> Anybody who's doing office work on Ubuntu can change the theme to a
> lighter one with an handfull of clicks. All the other ones will be drawn
> to that darker, unique one.
> Imho Open Moko has a good start on an orange-black interface, but it
> looks a little cheap. Maybe we could start here and try to merge this
> with Neils stuff. The only problem I see is the fact, that I don't know,
> how to get black and orange into an theme, tha looks both extraodynary
> and business-style.
> Here's a first test:
> http://guentherbeyer.de/wp-content/uploads/2007/11/ubuntu_804_theme_test_02b.png

I was actually just looking at some OpenMoko screenshots and thinking that
they contained some of the stuff we need for Hardy. Maybe we read the same
blogs? ;-P

Anyway - I think that the black widget background is a bit over the edge.
I'm a big fan of  black/dark themes normally, but no matter how much I like
them I always end up resorting to a lighter theme. They are just not nice
for my eyes.

Another problem with dark themes is a purely technical one. I've done a
handful dark themes myself, but they always end up with small glitches here
and there because not all apps are designed to respect the theme 100% This
makes for a bit of an amateurish feel in the long run. That is not
acceptable for Hardy.

Ofcourse broken app theming is a shame for us, but there is simply no way we
can fix this for all known apps. Prominent ones like Firefox has problems
among others (or atleast it used to - have not checked Gutsy with dark

But the OpenMoko inspiration is a good thing IMHO.

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