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You are here: MacNN Forums > Software - Troubleshooting and Discussion > macOS > Ugly graphic design in Panther

Ugly graphic design in Panther
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asagoo
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Oct 31, 2003, 04:02 PM
 
This may just be me, but I think that the graphic design in Panther isn't as nice as in Jaguar. It almost looks like they replaced their design team:

1. The Lucida Grande font seems to have been updated. It's now slightly compressed, which makes it look a bit ugly, especially at 12 points.

2. Labels in the Finder are hideous, as are the address blobs in Mail.

3. The new title bars for non-metal windows look like plastic, which doesn't fit very well into the paper-like look of the rest of the interface.

4. The startup screen, login window and "about this mac" box don't look very nice.
     
Landos Mustache
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Oct 31, 2003, 04:21 PM
 
I hope they did get a new team as all those pin-stripes and drop shadows of the older OS were horrible.

I wanted 10.3 JUST for the new look.

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schmoe
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Oct 31, 2003, 05:29 PM
 
I definitely agree! Apple seems to have replaced all of the excellent UI designers who worked on 10.1 and 10.2 with ex Microsoft UI designers (who probably wear disco shirts and gold chains as the height of fashion)

Labels are really ugly, and I hate the new way icons are highlighted, it looks so crappy compared to Panther.

I miss my pinstripes, the stupid grey title bar is ugly and reminds me of Windows 95.

The startup screen and registration screens look like they belong in some crappy Linux UI; so blaise and unpolished.

And of course I hate brushed metal.

BOOOOOOO Apple, what a horrible thing you've done to a once beautiful UI.
     
cpac
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Oct 31, 2003, 05:52 PM
 
I for one (or two in this thread I guess) love the changes in Panther's UI.
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::maroma::
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Oct 31, 2003, 05:52 PM
 
I have an idea, why don't you create a theme? You obviously know what you hate about it, so why not change what you hate. You see, it would be infinitely more productive to create your own theme than to spend time posting about how much you hate the UI of Panther on a forum. Because, in case you didn't know, Apple doesn't base their UI design on the bitching and moaning on the MacNN Forums.
     
gif32
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Oct 31, 2003, 05:59 PM
 
What does anyone else think of the new lock icon?

The old one was very clean and minimalist (like good Apple design). The new one looks like a cartoon I think. Why did they have to change it?

This is of course trivial but it scares me to think maybe Apple design as a whole is going that direction - let's get back to clean, simple, elegant...
     
bonk
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Oct 31, 2003, 06:02 PM
 
Yeah, the new one is big and cartoony, I like the old one.
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Terri
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Oct 31, 2003, 06:08 PM
 
I like the new look. It is the first look that I've liked since X came out.

I love the new Labels, much better then how they were done in 9.
     
OAW
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Oct 31, 2003, 06:22 PM
 
Originally posted by schmoe:


Labels are really ugly, and I hate the new way icons are highlighted, it looks so crappy compared to Panther.
So I suppose you preferred the way OS 9 labels attempted to apply a color to an already colored icon ... often resulting in a completely different color than the label? Just imagine a yellow icon with a blue label in OS 9!

As for as how the icons are highlighted, I find it to be a big improvement. Previously, the only visual cue to a highlighted icon was a "darkening" of the icon. Unfortunately, if it was a photographic icon, there was no visual cue whatsoever. So it was very difficult to tell if a graphic file was selected or not. The new way handles all file types the same and makes it really easy to see that it is selected.

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Big Mac
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Oct 31, 2003, 06:25 PM
 
Opinions do indeed differ -- which means that art is in the eye of the beholder.

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Hydra
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Oct 31, 2003, 06:42 PM
 
I think the highlight is a big improvement form previous versions. The box around it gives a far more dramtic visual clue that that particular icon is selected. I also seem to remember in the olden' days of 10.2 (seems so long ago now ) that if you set the finder (or a folder) to display the preview of the file as the the icon instead of actual icon it wouldn't have any hihglight indication (shadowing in this case) at all. I was never sure if it was done this way intentionaly or it was a bug.

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Telusman
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Oct 31, 2003, 06:45 PM
 
Aqua 10.2 made my eyes hurt after a while, i started to see stripes when i looked up and stared at a white wall... it was somewhat disturbing. I hated the 10.3 UI, for about a week, I used a Panther Theme on Jaguar, and forced myself to use it for a while, and i realized that i didn't get the headaches that i once did from the busy stripes of Aqua 10.2. I really like the OS, the multi-depth hues of gray is more neutral, easier on the eyes and not as distracting. I hate the brushed metal interface, with a passion (metallifizer rulezzzzz) so i managed to get my hangups out of the way but I will say i wish there were subtle stripes in the titlebars, i really miss those stripes, add a subtle stripe, and for me, the UI will be perfect.
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Hydra
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Oct 31, 2003, 06:47 PM
 
BigMac,

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( Last edited by Hydra; Oct 31, 2003 at 06:55 PM. )
     
zigzag
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Nov 1, 2003, 12:01 AM
 
I'm also disappointed in some aspects of the new design. I like the new functionality, but from a visual perspective I prefered the relative subtlety and elegance of Jaguar. The more strident selection colors in Panther remind me of XP, and the log-in box looks as though they weren't even paying attention. The whole thing is a bit of a grab-bag, visually. I've wondered if they aren't trying to make it look more familiar to Windows users. Maybe I'm just old-fashioned . . .
     
Apfhex
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Nov 1, 2003, 12:46 AM
 
What's wrong with the Login Window? It looks almost the same, just with some of Panther's new look which I happen to like a lot. Aqua looks great now, IMHO.

Brushed Metal, on the other hand, is starting to get on my nerves a little, and I think it could really use an update (though QuickTime 6.4 adds a darker gradient to the bottom of the player window which I think looks quite nice). I liked it in Safari, but adding it to the Finder was a little too much (I'll probably try out the new Metallifizer once it reaches a final build).
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clarkgoble
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Nov 1, 2003, 01:14 AM
 
I really like the "indented regions" that Panther uses. I think that labels work much better as well. As others have mentioned, the Sys9 labels really only worked if you had neutral icons you labelled. With more photo-realistic icons, that can be problematic. (I recognize that not everyone likes the photo-like icons and prefers more abstract ones. But I like them) I also think Panther looks cleaner. Even the metal is growing on me.

I do admit though that the locks look cartoonish and draw a little too much attention to themselves. Ideally the UI should be more subtle. (Although ironically a lot of people complained because especially in 10.1 the basic Aqua UI was too in-your face)

I especially like the new tabs. Much more refined and subtle.

I don't like the new "new message" icon in Mail though. I preferred the old one.

But all these are fairly minor and most can be themed away if you wish.
     
chrisutley
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Nov 1, 2003, 02:05 AM
 
Labels are hella-ugly, I must admit. You want a clear way to differentiate files, but don't overdo it to the extent that it's offensive to the eye! Crikey, that is just terrible. I cannot believe a group of people around a conference table signed off on that, much less Steve Jobs.

Oh well, overall I think the interface is improved just a little.
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zigzag
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Nov 1, 2003, 02:08 AM
 
Originally posted by Apfhex:
What's wrong with the Login Window? It looks almost the same, just with some of Panther's new look which I happen to like a lot. Aqua looks great now, IMHO.
It's a small difference but I reacted negatively when I first saw it. I'm not sure I can define why - the extra window seems unnecessarily busy and distracting, and I'm not crazy about the silver Apple. It's not a big deal but us Apple fans tend to be very attuned to such things.
     
forkies
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Nov 1, 2003, 02:24 AM
 
For the people who hate the new selection boxes and labels:

Do you realize their purpose? These features NO LONGER **** with the icon. The selection boxes only add a dark box with an outline, while the labels only add a background to the file name. Icons are will always appear the same in Panther, no matter what.

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zigzag
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Nov 1, 2003, 02:48 AM
 
Originally posted by forkies:
For the people who hate the new selection boxes and labels:

Do you realize their purpose? These features NO LONGER **** with the icon. The selection boxes only add a dark box with an outline, while the labels only add a background to the file name. Icons are will always appear the same in Panther, no matter what.
Of course. That doesn't mean we have to like the way they look, or the color choices. I'm not going to lose sleep over it, but I can express an opinion about it.

I don't especially care for the bright blue selection color in the finder, either. I understand its function, I'm just not crazy about the color. It's more strident, more XP-ish, and I liked the more subtle look of Jaguar. Neither am I crazy about having metal everywhere.

Apple has always been very concerned with style, so it shouldn't surprise anyone that some of us also focus on it. It's just a matter of personal preference. Don't worry, I still love my Mac.
     
clarkgoble
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Nov 1, 2003, 03:47 AM
 
Originally posted by zigzag:
I don't especially care for the bright blue selection color in the finder, either.
That is customizable. Mine is a light green. Go to the General Appearance pref pane and if you go to "Other" you can make it any color you wish.
     
SomeToast
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Nov 1, 2003, 04:19 AM
 
Originally posted by clarkgoble:
I really like the "indented regions" that Panther uses.
Yes, the new group boxes are a huge improvement. And the great thing is, even older software takes advantage of them. The new tabs are great as well.

Labels in list and column view work for me, but icon view just feels wrong.

If the label color area extended just one pixel lower so that text decenders didn't crash into the edge it would make a world of difference.



Of course, now that I look at it, for a single line label with 11 pt type, the color area is 13 pixels high. For a two-line label, each individual color line is 15 pixels high. Why the inconsistency? Does the single-line label team work in a different building than the multiple-line label team?
( Last edited by SomeToast; Nov 1, 2003 at 04:25 AM. )
     
zigzag
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Nov 1, 2003, 11:15 AM
 
Originally posted by clarkgoble:
That is customizable. Mine is a light green. Go to the General Appearance pref pane and if you go to "Other" you can make it any color you wish.
But those color choices don't match the actual implemented colors, which are much more strident and XP-ish than the ones shown in the Preferences menu (I'm referring to file selections, not text). Also notice that whatever color you choose for selections, the selection color in the sidebar remains that strident blue color (or so it seems on my machine). Also notice the trend towards bright orange indicators like the "logged in" indicator in the log-in window as well as the snapback button in Safari.

It's not life or death, it's just a stylistic trend that I don't particularly care for. And it doesn't seem as well-integrated stylistically. But others either disagree or don't notice at all, which is fine. And I'll get used to it, might even like it after a while.
     
addiecool
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Nov 1, 2003, 11:31 AM
 
I think Panther is way better than any OSX version. I love it
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DeathMan
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Nov 1, 2003, 01:26 PM
 
I don't like the purple help button. It just looks wrong there. I also don't like the lock. It looks like it came out of xp.
     
asagoo  (op)
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Nov 1, 2003, 03:22 PM
 
In my original post I wasn't talking so much about the functional aspect of these changes but rather the aesthetic.

I agree that the way labels and highlighting work make more sense than before, and I'm glad that the stripes in windows and menus are more subtle now, but some bits just seem to be implemented in a half-arsed way, graphically.

Labels, or maybe rather the file name itself, should be moved vertically so they align properly (same for Mail's names). The gradient labels use is unnecessary and XP-like, in a cheap-looking way.

The old startup and login screens looked more elegant, in my opinion, for their simplicity.

The arrangement and use of white space in "about this mac" seems very unbalanced.

The couloured help button is a good idea, and works (I find), but could have a colour that looks less out of place.

The point I'm making is that Apple have in the past paid a lot of attention to graphic details like these, and have had a good feel for what looks Right(TM). Some of that talent seems to have been lost in Panther.
     
clarkgoble
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Nov 1, 2003, 07:27 PM
 
Yeah. You're right. It follows the basic color but doesn't respect the brightness or saturation of the color you pick. Weird. It does seem a little more "in your face." I prefer the more refined pastel appearance. This is surprising since through 10.2 the move in the UI was to be less in your face.

I didn't notice the color in the left pane. That's definitely a bug and should be reported to Apple. (Once again the more people that report it the more likely it is to change)

The other things I noticed is that the country flags in the keyboard input menu still aren't anti-aliased and are also a little garish. If I could find where those icons were I'd definitely change them. (Along with the iKey icon -- what a garish icon for the menubar)

http://abs01.info.apple.com/feedback/osxfeedback

As you said, fairly minor but not quite as nice as could be.

I do disagree about the initial login screen though. I kind of dig it.
     
the_sisko
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Nov 2, 2003, 04:52 AM
 
I really dislike the lack of pinstripes on the windows. I suppose Apple wanted to differentiate the title bar of windows with the menubar. It seems to me that the four most recognizable features of Aqua were: pinstripes, drop shadows, the Dock, and the red/yellow/green buttons in each window. I don't like the idea of getting rid of one, even if it's only on the Windows!

I don't like brushed metal on the Finder...ugh

Labels are okay, but it looks like it came out of Microsoft instead of Apple. Anyone can do just a plain color like that.
     
curmi
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Nov 2, 2003, 07:12 AM
 
The new lock icon is really poor. Not only does it look like a cartoon (very XP ish), it also doesn't look like a button until you mouse over it (also Windows-ish).

This is really bad usability - preferences now have some buttons with borders, some without. You actually need text next to the button telling you to click it, in order to realise you CAN click it. That should have sent off alarms at Apple.

Much as I love Panther, I do think some UI decisions were poor, and someone is asleep at the wheel in the usability labs.
     
Jim Paradise
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Nov 2, 2003, 07:14 AM
 
Originally posted by schmoe:
I definitely agree! Apple seems to have replaced all of the excellent UI designers who worked on 10.1 and 10.2 with ex Microsoft UI designers (who probably wear disco shirts and gold chains as the height of fashion)

Labels are really ugly, and I hate the new way icons are highlighted, it looks so crappy compared to Panther.

I miss my pinstripes, the stupid grey title bar is ugly and reminds me of Windows 95.

The startup screen and registration screens look like they belong in some crappy Linux UI; so blaise and unpolished.

And of course I hate brushed metal.

BOOOOOOO Apple, what a horrible thing you've done to a once beautiful UI.



There's nothing worse than Apple's current trend of reverting to the ugly and out-dated gray looking interfaces of yester-years gone by.
     
asagoo  (op)
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Nov 2, 2003, 07:43 AM
 
Oh, and I forgot to mention the new Finder icon.
     
Dirk Lenz
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Nov 2, 2003, 09:56 AM
 
Well - from a graphic designerís perspective the biggest drawback in Pantherís UI design is the action buttonís icon text being off-center.

     
TheSpaz
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Nov 2, 2003, 10:05 AM
 
Take a look at all my pet peeves.

http://homepage.mac.com/justspaztik/panthergui
     
KidRed
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Nov 2, 2003, 11:06 AM
 
Originally posted by asagoo:
This may just be me, but I think that the graphic design in Panther isn't as nice as in Jaguar. It almost looks like they replaced their design team:

1. The Lucida Grande font seems to have been updated. It's now slightly compressed, which makes it look a bit ugly, especially at 12 points.

2. Labels in the Finder are hideous, as are the address blobs in Mail.

3. The new title bars for non-metal windows look like plastic, which doesn't fit very well into the paper-like look of the rest of the interface.

4. The startup screen, login window and "about this mac" box don't look very nice.
-I love the font, it's easier to read and takes up less space.

-I have no issue with labels, and if by 'blobs' you are referring to threading, I love that too.

3-Long over due, the stripes are dead, thank god.

4-Startup screen and bout mac are very simple clean and effective, not sure the problem here either.
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stew
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Nov 2, 2003, 11:43 AM
 
Got to agree with the poster above. The old Lucida Grande was way too big (the new one still is, but it's a step in the right direction) and the reduced pinstripes are good too. I never liked them.


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dharknes
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Nov 2, 2003, 01:16 PM
 
Originally posted by asagoo:
This may just be me, but I think that the graphic design in Panther isn't as nice as in Jaguar. It almost looks like they replaced their design team:

1. The Lucida Grande font seems to have been updated. It's now slightly compressed, which makes it look a bit ugly, especially at 12 points.

2. Labels in the Finder are hideous, as are the address blobs in Mail.

3. The new title bars for non-metal windows look like plastic, which doesn't fit very well into the paper-like look of the rest of the interface.

4. The startup screen, login window and "about this mac" box don't look very nice.
1. Funny but I really don't notice a difference in the fonts sorry. I do find the anti-aliasing to be a lot better. Making everything just generally easier to read.

2. The only time I ever see the labels in when I accidentally drop something on my desktop. Column view still highlights to selected item. I do think the new UI is to "in your face". But I do like the new way icons are highlighted. I'm personal indifferent about labels in Mail.app, but I do think that using names instead of addresses in a big improvement.

3. First I don't like brushed metal, it wasn't bad on QT Player and safari is okay, but the finder is just to much. And yes I know I can install a hack to turn it off but why shouldn't I have to why not just give me a check box? I don't like hacks, makes the system to unstable. And for me stability and uptime are the name of game. As for non-metal apps, the plastic looks strange, and I'm not sure if I like it. But I did prefer the way apps in the background in 10.2 had a transparent title bar.

4. More or less indifferent on the login window.

All said and done I think the functionality changes in Panther are wonderful. The OS feels more finished. But the UI changes generally suck, it makes the UI more like Windows. Which may have been the plan. Make it easier for Window users to migrate to OSX. The problem is the Windows UI and way of doing things is muddled confusing, and quite often broken. So in order to make OSX more like Windows, Apple has to break and confuse the UI.
     
lngtones
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Nov 2, 2003, 11:59 PM
 
I think the new Finder selection boxes are more of homage to NeXTSTEP than a Windows thing. (Well Windows copied NeXT just as much as the Mac)



     
DaGuy
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Nov 3, 2003, 01:33 AM
 
Originally posted by asagoo:
This may just be me, but I think that the graphic design in Panther isn't as nice as in Jaguar. It almost looks like they replaced their design team:

1. The Lucida Grande font seems to have been updated. It's now slightly compressed, which makes it look a bit ugly, especially at 12 points.

2. Labels in the Finder are hideous, as are the address blobs in Mail.

3. The new title bars for non-metal windows look like plastic, which doesn't fit very well into the paper-like look of the rest of the interface.

4. The startup screen, login window and "about this mac" box don't look very nice.
1. Really? I can hardly tell the difference.

2. Could probably use some improvement but better something than nothing at all.

3. Completely disagree. The old style looked like crap and did not photograph well. The new style is clean and elegant.

4. They all look good except the "about this mac" that looks out of synch with the rest of the OS.

Overall, from a purely esthetic perspective, Panther is a huge improvement over Jaguar -which wasn't too bad to begin with.

     
ApeInTheShell
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Nov 3, 2003, 05:36 AM
 
Labels are helpful if you think about it.

Imagine your a web designer, you have gif, tiff, jpeg, html, css..etc
Why look through a long list of files or make seperate folders for them when you can color code them. That way visually you'll know: hey, red means jpeg and blue means gif. aha!

Just look for the file in the blue section and tada, less hassle, carefree day.

Apple did something right with Panther. They made it fast on older machines. Windows in general has always been ugly. Are you sure your a mac user?

If you had watched recent cartoons you'd know the animation is evolving each year just as this operating system is.

The problem is your complaining instead of doing something constructive like a previous post said.
     
curmi
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Nov 3, 2003, 07:54 AM
 
Originally posted by DeathMan:
I don't like the purple help button. It just looks wrong there. I also don't like the lock. It looks like it came out of xp.
Agreed on the purple help button. It was unneccessary to make the button purple. And now the eye is actually drawn to the purple button rather than the main buttons in the dialog.

This is just making changes for changes sake.
     
Orion27
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Nov 3, 2003, 09:12 AM
 
When I first saw labels in the Finder I cringed. Looks like they were in a hurry to get done.
Very unApple and amateurish. And to have carried over the theme when highlighting and icon is more disturbing. Can't believe Steve let this pass. The backlight behind the file names is unnecessary, redundant and inelegant. More is less. I do like the motiff in the Finder window though..
     
Spheric Harlot
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Nov 3, 2003, 10:48 AM
 
Originally posted by Orion27:
When I first saw labels in the Finder I cringed. Looks like they were in a hurry to get done.
Very unApple and amateurish. And to have carried over the theme when highlighting and icon is more disturbing. Can't believe Steve let this pass. The backlight behind the file names is unnecessary, redundant and inelegant. More is less. I do like the motiff in the Finder window though..
I thought so too.

In use, though, it's a lot better than it was before.

-s*
     
kovacs
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Nov 3, 2003, 11:12 AM
 
Originally posted by Orion27:
When I first saw labels in the Finder I cringed. Looks like they were in a hurry to get done.
Very unApple and amateurish. And to have carried over the theme when highlighting and icon is more disturbing. Can't believe Steve let this pass. The backlight behind the file names is unnecessary, redundant and inelegant. More is less. I do like the motiff in the Finder window though..
I would like to see labels in the same visual style as Mail.app highlights threads...
     
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Nov 3, 2003, 11:25 AM
 
I also hate 95% of the Panther GUI changes. In particular, brushed metal Finder, tabs that looks like buttons, and icon selection are all candidates for Worst Design Decision Ever.

On the up side, faster sheets, standard dial controls and Cocoa disclosure triangles are good.

Of course, bitching here on a forum is good for stating your opinion, but it has zero effect on Apple. Anyone who has a strong opinion one way or the other ought to be submitting it to either:

http://www.apple.com/macosx/feedback/

or

http://developer.apple.com/bugreporter/
     
benb
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Nov 3, 2003, 11:26 AM
 
Originally posted by TheSpaz:
Take a look at all my pet peeves.

http://homepage.mac.com/justspaztik/panthergui
BaHahahaha!

Idiot. You don't even know how to shut off Fast User Switching.
     
kovacs
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Nov 3, 2003, 11:37 AM
 
Originally posted by arekkusu:

Of course, bitching here on a forum is good for stating your opinion, but it has zero effect on Apple. Anyone who has a strong opinion one way or the other ought to be submitting it to either:

http://www.apple.com/macosx/feedback/

or

http://developer.apple.com/bugreporter/
I don't think any of the GUI changes qualify as a bug
     
Orion27
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Nov 3, 2003, 12:13 PM
 
Don't tell me Apple doesn't look here. We all like to read good press about us and they get plenty of it here. But when they do something ugly, it's a stick in the eye I can tell you how much I like Panther, I can tell you backlit file names on the desktop is poorly implemented and it sucks. Now I'm going to get a life and dwell on why I even give **** about such a teeny bit of the interface.
     
SomeToast
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Nov 3, 2003, 12:52 PM
 
Originally posted by benb:
BaHahahaha!

Idiot. You don't even know how to shut off Fast User Switching.
Two bowls of Superi-Os for breakfast this morning?
     
benb
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Nov 3, 2003, 01:34 PM
 
Originally posted by SomeToast:
Two bowls of Superi-Os for breakfast this morning?
No. Just one of "I dont put up with people whose gripes stem from their own lack of knowledge".
     
Developer
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Nov 3, 2003, 01:40 PM
 
Originally posted by benb:
No. Just one of "I dont put up with people whose gripes stem from their own lack of knowledge".
Apparently you have a very small brain which lacks reading comprehension.
I suggest you slowly and carefully re-read TheSpaz' web site before you call him an idiot.
Nasrudin sat on a river bank when someone shouted to him from the opposite side: "Hey! how do I get across?" "You are across!" Nasrudin shouted back.
     
 
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