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THE GUI SHOULD BE BETTER

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Posted (edited)
On 6/17/2020 at 6:02 PM, Ross Scott said:

No, I think you're misunderstanding me.  Ideally, I want accuracy to barely matter...  In other words, the GUI adapts to my movement and intentions, not the other way around.  I don't see what's contradictory about this... This is also why I got excited about mouse gestures.  It opens up a wide world of possibilities where accuracy isn't important.

 

This helps me understand your actual objectives a lot better but it's also completely unrelated to the issues I was trying to point out.

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I think you see what I said as contradictory, because you're looking at this in terms of hitting a target of a certain size across a certain distance.  I'm talking about the potential of targets where distance and size are irrelevant.  In other words, Fitt's law doesn't even apply for that kind of manipulation.  It transcends it!

 

Now for more conventional GUI menus where that's simply not an option, I want what's fastest and feels best.  That's where that Fitt's law thing people are talking about come into play.  Tiny targets take longer to hit.  Targets far away take longer to hit.  You want everything semi-big and close-by, which is probably why I thought of that pie menu system.

Think I understand the reason for these seeming contradictions and inconsistencies now. It's due to the fact you're mixing up two entirely different issues:

 

  • Loosing your current workflow when upgrading from Windows 7 to 10.
  • Developing the most efficient GUI possible, regardless of OS.

 

All my suggested solutions were solely aimed at helping you migrate to Windows 10 with as little change to your CURRENT workflow as possible. They had nothing to do with your IDEAL dream GUI that doesn't exist yet. That's an entirely different subject. However, when I pointed out a feature of Windows 10 that works exactly like, or very similar to, your CURRENT setup, you either dismissed it as not IDEAL or bragged that you've already had that feature long before Windows did. All of which is beside the point and makes it seem like you just have a personal vendetta with Microsoft (no big surprise, ha!).

 

Your latest response mixes these two issues together even more, which makes it feel pretty incoherent. And all of this makes trying to help you solve the issues you have RIGHT NOW very frustrating because the goalpost keeps switching. Now I know you're not doing any of this on purpose, but that's exactly why I'm trying to make you aware of it! Because I really am trying to help you.

 

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many comments seemed focused on me not providing solutions.  From my perspective, it's a little insane that's on my shoulders to begin with, but I plan to slowly figure out something for myself in the absence of other ideas.  I'll detail what I plan to have / what I think could be better in a followup later on, but it's a little disappointing seeing how narrow the range of ideas have been.

The problem here is that you're actually putting the burden of finding GUI "enlightenment" on the shoulders of everyone except yourself. The video could be summarized as "This all sucks and could be way better but I'm not an expert so I want you to show me how to fix it".  No offense but this is the easiest criticism anyone can make about literally anything because it doesn't require any real proof or effort from the person making it. So it's not surprising at all to have people ask for some kind of tangible course of action since you're making such a bold claim.

Edited by Isaiah (see edit history)

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Posted (edited)

Hi there. I'm not much of an expert on GUIs either, but it's something I've thought about more often recently, so I'm gonna chime in a bit.

 

On the subject of Browsers, I mostly jumped ship from Firefox when they broke most of their extensions a few years ago. I'm using Vivaldi nowadays, which is being developed by former Opera people. I'm mentioning this because of an old gripe I have with the UI of most browsers (and Vivaldi is not perfect in that regard, just better than others I've tried): most websites have quite a lot of dead space to left and right of their content. This is not necessarily a bad thing, I'm guessing it is like this for compatibility reasons. Yet all browsers I'm aware of put the majority of their UI on the top and bottom of the website by default, decreasing how much content is visible at any time, while the left and right of the screen go unused. (I suppose that is less of a problem if you are browsing windowed, but I do most of my browsing full screen.) Vivaldi at least lets me put the tab bar on the left, freeing up some of that sparse vertical space and making use of the huge amount of horizontal space (you can also turn off the tab close button, and it supports mouse gestures out of the box).

Ideally I'd want something like an old RTS, where everything is to the left of the main view, but I don't think that exists yet.

 

That wheel interface you proposed looks very interesting and I'm amazed someone whipped up a proof of concept already. I could see myself using that.

Edited by Emmes (see edit history)

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, Isaiah said:

This helps me understand your actual objectives a lot better but it's also completely unrelated to the issues I was trying to point out.

I'm not really looking to get into an argument about this, but you're accusing me of being contradictory, which I don't appreciate unless it's accurate (like what I said on memorization, fair enough).  So please, specify with no uncertainty, what did I say regarding targets where I'm being contradictory?  I want easy to hit targets with low travel time.

 

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Think I understand the reason for these seeming contradictions and inconsistencies now. It's due to the fact you're mixing up two entirely different issues:

 

  • Loosing your current workflow when upgrading from Windows 7 to 10.
  • Developing the most efficient GUI possible, regardless of OS.

Sorry if I wasn't clear here.  I'm not seeking to keep my current workflow.  I want something BETTER.  Moving from 7 to 10 is the catalyst.  10 struck me as shutting down more options, since it's hostile to custom shells, and updates will wreck some 3rd party programs with no consideration for customization. 

 

As for being incoherent, I can be guilty on that one.  GUIs are very complex, I'm juggling dozens of thoughts on this in my head, so sometimes it doesn't always come out clearly, even though there actually is merit behind the thought.

 

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However, when I pointed out a feature of Windows 10 that works exactly like, or very similar to, your CURRENT setup, you either dismissed it as not IDEAL or bragged that you've already had that feature long before Windows did.

2 responses to this:

1. Something that has the same functionality as what I have now, but is LESS efficient, I see as a downgrade.  The suggestions I saw you mentioning all struck me as accomplishing the same goal, but in ways that take more time.  It's more than just whether it can do what I was doing.  It's about whether it can do what I need as well or even BETTER than what I had before.  If somebody wants a new convertible because their old one has damage, and there is a new convertible available, but it only tops out at 45mph, they're not going to see that as a good answer.

 

2. As for bragging about having an option a lot earlier, I could have been mixing up my responses to other comments I saw, I forget.  Some people have pointed out that me using old software is ludicrous, whereas when I set this up, the options I wanted simply didn't exist by standard means, so I went with what did work, and didn't always keep up with what changed, often because new OS's would wreck options.  Part of that is me being behind the curve, but when I see how old software was sometimes ahead in some ways to what's even available NOW, it makes me frustrated with the entire situation.  In other words, look at it like this:

Old software:

-Could do functions A, B, and C

New software:

-Can do functions, A and B.  Does function A even better than the old software, does function B more poorly.  Can't even do function C.

 

 

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The problem here is that you're actually putting the burden of finding GUI "enlightenment" on the shoulders of everyone except yourself. The video could be summarized as "This all sucks and could be way better but I'm not an expert so I want you to show me how to fix it".  No offense but this is the easiest criticism anyone can make about literally anything because it doesn't require any real proof or effort from the person making it. So it's not surprising at all to have people ask for some kind of tangible course of action since you're making such a bold claim.

Listen, you say you're trying to help me, but you're either concern trolling now, or you're unaware of your own bias on this to say something like that.  Yes, I'm not an expert, and yes I'm seeking help from others.  But insinuating I provided no proof or effort on this topic?  Why do think the video was so long?  Here's what I did do:

 

-I showed my existing desktop and a few optimizations it had, even though I recognize it's very flawed

-I showed time trials how launching frequently used programs was faster in my method than the Windows default

-I proposed a pie menu system for rapidly launching software

-I recognized the potential of a custom keypad that's ergonomically designed for hotkey deployment

-I found research demonstrating that flat themes are objectively slower for users.

-I proposed mouse gestures as a way of doing things more rapidly and suggested some fundamentals for coming up with styles

-I gave a list of programs that I think are taking us in the right direction for customization as a starting point, suggesting possible implementations

-Demonstrated objective advantages for not having a close button in web browsers.

-Gave specific changes that should be made to an existing pie menu launcher for maximum efficiency

 

Think what you want, but if you watched my video and then say I'm making the easiest criticism possible and making no effort for trying to advance the GUI, then that's a troll move, whether you mean it that way or not.

 

Edited by Ross Scott (see edit history)

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In the spirit of brainstorming-- a couple of thoughts I've had in the interim.

I'd mentioned before the idea of bringing up a phone-password style grid to formalize the gestures. I think you could maybe combine that with the weapon-wheel concept to make something like is pictured below.

Call this a first draft. I call it a "Constellation Wheel". As is, it has the power of gestures but without the uncertainty about what you actually wanted to invoke which can cause gestures to misfire. It does require more precise aiming than the weapon wheel, which is a problem. It also doesn't really tell you what you're invoking, you kind of have to just know. One way you can help the precise aiming problem is by tiling regular polygons like hexagons instead. I have a couple of pictures of what this "Hexagesture" layout would look like.

Its ADVANTAGE over the weapon-wheel is that it can invoke a stupidly-large number of things quickly. The weapon wheel example is amazing but I'm still not sure how well it scales once you're choosing between more than a dozen items. Granted, there are ways to sub-categorize-- programs, programs beginning with numbers 1-9, programs beginning with A-E, etc. Heck, I can even somewhat imagine algorithmically adjusting categorizations based on how much is installed where-- like if you install a BUNCH of programs starting with A, maybe it goes from "programs A-E" to "programs A" and "programs B-E". You get the point. But somewhere in there the inherent complexity of the maze of sequential gestures you're navigating is maybe gonna become a problem.

I think the weapon wheel will be fastest for commonly used items and actions but will struggle at picking specific items out of large sets. The "constellation gestures" or "hexigestures" concept will, conversely, not be as good as the weapon wheel for common items but would excel at picking specific items out of large sets and might be considered as a way to supplement it. It is, however, less intuitive. It's also potentially targeting a small subset of items-- ones I need/want to invoke quickly, and use often enough to remember a gesture for, but have to pick out of a large set. I think it would be best for things like programs. It could use further tweaking or UI improvements to help deal with the cognitive burden of use-- that is, the fact you have to memorize the gestures, in the current form. Other solutions would be better for sorting pictures or text files out of large sets.

One other thing to note-- it's occurred to me that you can shrink the sets of things you search, and make searches more efficient, by constraining searches to things that actually exist on a system. That may make sub-searches within the weapon wheel more doable? So, EG, I have 13 programs that start with A but only 11 unique second-letters (EG-- aC, aD, aL). Not really a new idea, per se. The Win 10 search honestly already makes use of this. Within typing a few letters it shows you only the things that match them on the system. Unfortunately it also automatically searches the web if it can't find the thing or you mis-spelled it, which I hate. I'd love to be able to constrain it to only let me search things it thinks exist.

I never asked, Ross-- you mentioned that you often find yourself trying to locate a program but not knowing the name. I'd sort of toyed with date-ranges as a possible filter for getting at that kind of information, but I never explicitly asked-- what kind of info DO you usually know about programs you can't recall the names of?

Phone Grid Gestures Small.png

Phone Grid Gestures Used Small.png

Hexigesture Small.png

Hexigesture Use Small.png

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6 hours ago, Ross Scott said:

I'm not really looking to get into an argument about this, but you're accusing me of being contradictory, which I don't appreciate unless it's accurate.  So please, specify with no uncertainty, what did I say regarding targets where I'm being contradictory? 

I already gave specific examples but I never wanted to get into an argument or upset you so much either. I was Just trying to point out what I thought were some issues with your complaints but that was obviously a huge mistake on my part. So let's just move on.

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Listen, you say you're trying to help me, but you're either concern trolling now, or you're unaware of your own bias on this to say something like that.  Yes, I'm not an expert, and yes I'm seeking help from others.  But insinuating I provided no proof or effort on this topic?  Why do think the video was so long?

You're misreading my comment completely. I'm talking about the effort to actually create the ultimate GUI itself. Not the effort you put into making the video. Most of the "truth" and "proof" presented in the video is also debatable because of it's subjective or vague nature. So they're not as definitive as you think.

 

In any case, my efforts to help here seem to have all been in vain so I'll try to restrain from giving any further feedback. But I do sincerely hope you find some kind of solution.

 

The real shame though is that your further comments on what you actually want had inspired me to think of an exciting new gui concept that I was planning to work on. But the fact I have upset you so much now has really demotivated me from even getting started on it because I fear it will just be another waste of time ☹️

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Great video by Ross. Hard to believe that Mouse Gesture video (easystroke) was made 10 years ago! The technology has been available for years.

I started using easystroke (mouse gestures) and gnome pie (pie menu) for about a week and it has been useful but not perfect. The gestures are nice if I need to something once (copy, paste, minimize, maximize, move to other screen, etc.). But if I want to something like scroll through Browser tabs, then I tend to move my hand to the keyboard and use a hotkey. The Pie Menu is convenient avoiding the need to move the mouse to an edge of the screen to launch an app.

 

I don't see moving the hand from the mouse to the keyboard going away. Typing needs 2 hands (one-handed layouts seem too slow) and the analog mouse movement is needed too. It could be reduced, like with a separate numpad (i.e. not on the keyboard but a separate USB device) or remap hotkeys for the arrow keys.

 

I could see Ross switching to Linux. I did the same when Windows 7 came out a decided to go from Windows XP to Linux instead. Ross used a 3rd-party file explorer to have 2 windows in one. I could never find a good one for Windows so that's one of the reasons that I switched. If Ross did switch, it would be another set of problems to get setup and running but some of the customization is built in to the OS.

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Not gonna lie, I only stick with Windows because it's almost a Pavlovian thing of being so used to it that my brain would take ages to acclimate to anything else.  I regret the fact that I was "raised on Windows", and never even knew how to properly run games in DOS (despite having an uncle who avidly collected the latest shareware back in the day).  After watching Ross's video, though, I'd welcome a new, improved GUI over ANY version of Windows any day of the week.   Ross made so many good points in the video that I can't help but think of an alternate universe where the anti-trust lawsuit went a completely different way and GUI development blossomed in the years following. 

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Posted (edited)
On 6/20/2020 at 9:07 PM, Isaiah said:

I already gave specific examples but I never wanted to get into an argument or upset you so much either. I was Just trying to point out what I thought were some issues with your complaints but that was obviously a huge mistake on my part. So let's just move on.

Okay, I think I found the problem.  I thought I made a post explaining it in detail, but it looks like that never happened, so I understand why you think I'm sounding irrational and irritable on this.  Let me spell it out clearly then, I think it will clear up the confusion (I'm hiding the text so it doesn't flood the chat):


 

Spoiler

 

You said this:


 

Spoiler

 

"

For example, in your video you complained about small GUI elements that demand too much precision from the user and recommended a kind of runway vs helipad approach, reasoning that "the less precise you need to be the faster you our". Okay, fair enough. But here in the forums you complain about increased travel distances being inefficient, which your very own "runway" concept would actually produce. The very mouse gestures you love being the perfect example of that

 

But for the sake of argument let's assume for a moment that greater travel distances are less efficient. Well with the alt-tab method I mentioned you instantly see all open app names at once with very helpful preview images, which is an objectively faster way to identify them than your method of moving the cursor all the way down to the bottom of the screen and across each icon to see the name of each, one at a time. And there displayed in the center of the screen closer to where the cursor most likely already is. And finally you only have to move your cursor to the exact app you want once identified. Meaning the alt-tab method is faster either way because it requires less travel distance and precision overall.

"

 

I said this


 

Spoiler

 

"

No, I think you're misunderstanding me.  Ideally, I want accuracy to barely matter.  Take that pie menu I demonstrated.  Say I want the upper left, so I flick the mouse that direction.  Maybe I flick it 10% of the screen, maybe I flick it 60%.  Ideally, it won't matter.  It detects I moved it to the upper left, so it draws a new menu where I am (or returns me to the center automatically).  In other words, the GUI adapts to my movement and intentions, not the other way around.  I don't see what's contradictory about this.  When you press most buttons or a D-PAD in a videogame, does it matter EXACTLY how hard you pressed it, or just that you pressed it?  It's a similar concept. 

"

 

 

That explains HALF of the not-a-contradiction-that-you-think-is-a-contradiction part.  Like in Back to the Future "Where we're going we don't need roads", I'm talking about a scenario where we don't even need TARGETS.  In other words, the travel time becomes irrelevant, because it becomes automatically optimized for the user.

 

If I just have to swipe left for a function to occur, I can swipe a little bit left, or I can make a big swipe left.  They'll both get the job done.  The reason it's FASTER is because I can be sloppy and not even THINK about it.  I don't have to concentrate and hit a target.  That saves me time and brainpower.  Now a short motion will be faster IF I don't spend time thinking about and concentrating on doing it.  The time savings comes from having no target and requiring no precision.  Again, this sort of transcends Fitt's Law.  There's no contradiction on the travel time because it can be as short or as long as you want to be.  All that matters is the total time required for the action, which is going to be more rapid than almost all scenarios of having targets.  I hope this part makes sense.

 

MISSING HALF OF THE EXPLANATION:

Alt / Win Tab in Windows still isn't as efficient as the dock for multiple reasons.  Some of these are subtle, others are not.  I hope you follow here:

 

-I think what I didn't state overtly is I'm assuming you SELECT the appropriate program you want.  So if you have 12 programs open, you're not JUST trying to get their names, you ALSO  want to SELECT the program you want.

 

-First off, Win-tab is not faster.  There's a delay in arranging the squares before the names come up.  Now this is only milliseconds, but I can literally scroll through all my items on the dock during the time I'm waiting on the system.  However, alt-tab is near-instantaneous, so we'll go with that.

 

-This is a subtle inefficiency, but it's still there.  If you have all the names displayed at once for many tasks, this is all over the screen and your eyes may have to hunt around to know where the name of what you're trying to find is.  Using the dock method, the name is always going to appear directly above where the highlight icon is.  Now just so you don't think I'm contradicting later, I WOULD want the screen flooded with info like this if I was browsing through a LOT of files, like hundreds.  But for open tasks, it's slightly faster to have the visuals a little more concentrated.  Again though, this is subtle.  See, you say it's a contradiction that I have to move through the names my way, HOWEVER, since I know exactly where the names are going to appear, it could STILL be faster.  It's not necessarily a contradiction.  It could be on average, it's still faster!  Even though the information is presented instantaneously, my EYES have more travel time now compared to the dock.  I don't have hard evidence on this however, but I hope you at least understand that this isn't a black and white thing.

 

-Next, the inefficiency differs depending on how you're using Alt-Tab.

If it's keyboard only:  You either have to hit tab multiple times until you find your target, then if you overshoot, go through it all over again, OR use the arrow keys to navigate it.  That means that if you only use one hand, this becomes a less efficient method because you're having to concentrate more (or I do, anyway) and hit the tab key the appropriate number of times.  So if you need the 10th program, you need to hit the tab key 10 times.  Alternately, you can use the arrow keys, but now you require TWO hands to accomplish your task and it takes your hand off the mouse, plus navigating via arrows is a little inefficient, it depends on how many programs there are.  So either you're spamming the tab key, or you're having to take your hand off the mouse and it may STILL be less efficient.

 

If it's the mouse and keyboard:

Here's where it honestly depends.  The travel time depends on where your cursor was when you pressed alt-tab, however, the targets are a decent size. However, this still has some inefficiencies:

1. There's still the visual hunting for the name which I mentioned earlier (though I admit this is subtle)

2. You can accidentally close your program because now "x's" are available as you navigate.  This means it takes a little more concentration not to hit them and increases the chance of accidentally closing a program you want open.  That reduces the efficiency a little bit (though I confess being able to middle click to close this way is awesome)

3. Here is where Fitt's Law is debatable.  The dock is a smaller target, but requires less travel time.  In this case the menu is a larger target, but requires more travel time.  It would take trials to determine which is faster.

4. This way REQUIRES 2 hands.  One for alt-tabbing, one for mouse navigation.  This part is not a subtle difference.  The dock can be 100% one hand. Now you can argue the trade off is worth it, but for something I do a LOT, like switching programs, the efficiency of only needing one hand is certainly worthy of consideration.

 

Anyway, I hope that settles why I don't think I made a contradiction on this and I'm not just talking out of my ass here.  What I'm measuring is not actual travel distance, but total time and effort.  In some scenarios, that might look like I'm saying opposite things, but it's probably not contradictory since I could be looking at a different metric than you thought I was.  I'm not looking for subservience from people to agree with what I prefer, but if you're going to say I'm WRONG about something, back it up (like the point on memorization, that WAS a contradiction and I'll own that).

 

 

Now HERE is where I don't think you have a leg to stand on:

 

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You're misreading my comment completely. I'm talking about the effort to actually create the ultimate GUI itself. Not the effort you put into making the video. Most of the "truth" and "proof" presented in the video is also debatable because of it's subjective or vague nature. So they're not as definitive as you think.

No, I didn't think you were talking about the work put in on the video, I took you at face value, saying I'm putting the burden of GUI enlightenment on everyone else except me.  Let's quote what you said:

 

On 6/19/2020 at 6:23 PM, Isaiah said:

The problem here is that you're actually putting the burden of finding GUI "enlightenment" on the shoulders of everyone except yourself. The video could be summarized as "This all sucks and could be way better but I'm not an expert so I want you to show me how to fix it".  No offense but this is the easiest criticism anyone can make about literally anything because it doesn't require any real proof or effort from the person making it.

Whether you meant it or not, your tone is kind of insulting here, man.  If I wasn't taking any of the burden, I would have demonstrated NO solutions to inefficiencies I mentioned, I would have given NO examples of visuals I liked better, I wouldn't have pointed out specifics for more rapid deployment of that Linux pie menu, I wouldn't have listed maybe a dozen programs for doing things like changing icons, changing the taskbar, adding desktop labels, more rapid deployment of shortcuts, showing PAST solutions I had for the start menu, changing the visual appearance, etc.

 

You say I'm misreading, but YOUR WORDS said I put the burden on everyone except myself.  If that were true, I would have criticized everything, and offered NO solutions.  Now were my solutions complete?  Not by a longshot, it's true, I DON'T have all the answers, but I also tried to show enough examples to show that I'm not just imagining this stuff either.  Again, think what you want, but I still don't see how you came to that conclusion.

 

 

 

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In any case, my efforts to help here seem to have all been in vain so I'll try to restrain from giving any further feedback. But I do sincerely hope you find some kind of solution.

No, damn it.  BY ALL MEANS propose GUI solutions, that was the whole point!  I plan to use your keymouse link in the followup video as it is!  I didn't know about that!  Just maybe be careful before making accusations, that's all.  Try to focus more on new ideas / software, that sort of thing.  Getting into a giant debate is unlikely to solve much, whereras I think more brainstorming would be way more constructive considering the state of the GUI today.  I WANT people proposing more ideas, screenshots, etc.

 

Edited by Ross Scott (see edit history)

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Posted (edited)

Just wanted to add a little something here. I found it surprising when you mentioned you didn't like dark themes because you're bound to run into something white when browsing the Internet and that's always unpleasant. I've been using dark themes everywhere for a few years now, and recently I ran into this same problem. I found an interesting solution, however.

 

There's an extension (for Firefox and Chrome, as far as I know) called TamperMonkey that can run simple scripts to change your browsing experience. With this, you can add custom code on a script to change the background on most sites. It doesn't work on all sites, of course, but it really makes things easier on the eyes.

 

If you want to try it out, add this to your browser, then create a new script, paste this:

Quote
// ==UserScript==
// @id             noWhiteBackgroundColor-gray
// @name           noWhiteBackgroundColor-gray
// @version        2.0
// @namespace
// @author         HowardSmith
// @description    Version 2: Generic version which can now be configured to any background colour you like:
// @include        *
// @exclude
// @run-at         document-start
// ==/UserScript==
(function () {
    function noWhiteBackgroundColor() {

        function changeBackgroundColor(x)  {  // auto change colors too close to white
            var backgroundColorRGB=window.getComputedStyle(x,null).backgroundColor;  // get background-color
            if(backgroundColorRGB!="transparent")  {  // convert hex color to rgb color to compare
                var RGBValuesArray = backgroundColorRGB.match(/\d+/g); //get rgb values
                var red   = RGBValuesArray[0];
                var green = RGBValuesArray[1];
                var blue  = RGBValuesArray[2];

                // ============================================================================
                // Set the base colors you require:
                // use: http://www.colorpicker.com
                // to find the rgb values of the base colour you wish to suppress white backgrounds with:
                // Default gray provided:
                // ============================================================================

                var red_needed   = 220;
                var green_needed = 220;
                var blue_needed  = 220;


                if (red>=220&&green>=220&&blue>=220) {   // white range detection

                   if      (red>=250&&red<=255&&green>=250&&green<=255&&blue>=250&&blue<=255) {
                      red_needed   += 0;
                      green_needed += 0; }

                   else if (red>=240&&red<=255&&green>=240&&green<=255&&blue>=240&&blue<=255) {
                      red_needed   += 6;
                      green_needed += 3; }

                   else if (red>=230&&red<=255&&green>=230&&green<=255&&blue>=230&&blue<=255) {
                      red_needed   += 10;
                      green_needed += 5; }

                   else if (red>=220&&red<=255&&green>=220&&green<=255&&blue>=220&&blue<=255) {
                      red_needed   += 14;
                      green_needed += 7; }

                   x.style.backgroundColor="rgb( " +red_needed+ ", " +green_needed+ ", " +blue_needed+ ")"; // the background-color you want
                   }
                }
            }
        var allElements=document.getElementsByTagName("*");  // get all elements on a page
        for(var i=0; i<allElements.length; i++)  {
            changeBackgroundColor(allElements[i]);}
    }
    window.addEventListener("DOMContentLoaded",noWhiteBackgroundColor, false);
})() ;

 

 

Then you just save the script and refresh your browser windows. This will turn the white backgrounds into grey ones. It's still quite easy to read black text and I haven't had any problems with it so far; also, you can change the RGB colors to make it clearer or darker if you want to. It's a bit of a hack, but it's made my browsing way easier on the last few months.

Edited by Juju (see edit history)

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Hi all,
So after seeing this video, I realized how much I have a thirst for a radial menu, and I went on a hunt to find a radial menu that is compatible with windows 10. So I'll get right to the point. I found 2 applications. The first one was very basic and lacked key features but I'll leave a link to it at the bottom of this post. However, the 2nd application that I found which is called Radial Menu...actually the first one is called Radial Menu as well... uh anyway it had every feature that I needed, and ever since I've downloaded the application, I use it daily and it has significantly increased my workflow speed.

So this is my current desktop:

spacer.png

I use fences to sort my applications, and when I hover over the label, it opens the container and I can select what I want. And this is a picture of the radial menu:

spacer.png

It's really amazing because I can simply choose any application I want with a quick flick. I set the trigger to mouse4 hold and it's simply amazing.

It has lots of customizability options such as different shapes and colors, sub-menus, ability to show other menus based on different applications, etc.

slc8Wmc.png

Anyway, I felt this is a very useful application and I wanted to share it with you guys. So if you like radial menus give this a try in my opinion it's worth it.

p.s. I didn't find it interfering with me playing video games which is even nicer. (I didn't put it to test though)

1st application: http://www.jacobiedema.nl/RadialMenu/

2nd application(recommended): http://radialmenu.weebly.com/

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Also, this might interest some people.
So I have a pretty neat setup to toggle dark mode on my PC.

So this is how my PC normally looks like:

gmRa2ks.png

And this is how it looks like with dark mode toggled on:

BQIXkOh.png

So, the best bits about this setup is that it is quickly toggled with 1 button press and it also makes every website dark.

So I use this auto-hotkey script to toggle the dark mode on windows 10 with a quick shortcut :

+F2::  ToggleWindowsDefaultAppMode()
ToggleWindowsDefaultAppMode() {
    RegRead, appMode, HKCU, Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Themes\Personalize, AppsUseLightTheme
    RegWrite, REG_DWORD, HKCU, Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Themes\Personalize, AppsUseLightTheme, % !appMode
}

I set the toggle button to Shift+F2 but it can be changed to anything. And I use an add-on for Firefox called Dark Reader and when the dark mode on windows is toggled, it also signals this add-on to toggle as well which is very neat. This is the setting that you need to toggle in order for this functionality to work:

ZgL3LXw.png

Hope this will be of use to someone.

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Also I stumbled upon this app which is a solid replacement for a "custom shell". The important thing is that it works for windows 10 and is packed with features.

So if you're not a fan of radial menus, this is the go-to option.

u7JugZh.png

 

Link: https://www.quickaccesspopup.com/

 

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12 hours ago, Juju said:

Just wanted to add a little something here. I found it surprising when you mentioned you didn't like dark themes because you're bound to run into something white when browsing the Internet and that's always unpleasant. I've been using dark themes everywhere for a few years now, and recently I ran into this same problem. I found an interesting solution, however.

 

There's an extension (for Firefox and Chrome, as far as I know) called TamperMonkey that can run simple scripts to change your browsing experience. With this, you can add custom code on a script to change the background on most sites. It doesn't work on all sites, of course, but it really makes things easier on the eyes.

 

If you want to try it out, add this to your browser, then create a new script, paste this:

 

Then you just save the script and refresh your browser windows. This will turn the white backgrounds into grey ones. It's still quite easy to read black text and I haven't had any problems with it so far; also, you can change the RGB colors to make it clearer or darker if you want to. It's a bit of a hack, but it's made my browsing way easier on the last few months.

 

There's also the "Dark Night Mode" addon for Chrome that works for any page you want it to.

Don't insult me. I have trained professionals to do that.

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13 hours ago, Juju said:

Just wanted to add a little something here. I found it surprising when you mentioned you didn't like dark themes because you're bound to run into something white when browsing the Internet and that's always unpleasant. I've been using dark themes everywhere for a few years now, and recently I ran into this same problem. I found an interesting solution, however.

Yeah I actually tried a plugin like that in the past and the results were fairly hideous and it still let some white through, but it's been a while since I've used it also.  I can see the potential for a dark theme if you really can clamp down on all colors above a certain brightness level, ideally it's something I should have tested out more, but I only had so much time.

12 hours ago, pro1ton said:

Hi all,
So after seeing this video, I realized how much I have a thirst for a radial menu, and I went on a hunt to find a radial menu that is compatible with windows 10.

Thanks, I'll try to add these as an option, maybe mention them in the followup video.  For me it's not the radial menu I want exactly so much as rapid access.  I've actually used some radial menus in games and applications before that I HATE (they'll track the mouse movement in a non-intuitive way, where you have to move the mouse left or right like a dial and up and down don't behave the way you think they would.  I imagine ones designed for the OS are more intuitive though.  That's great hearing that it's increased your workflow speed, that's what this is all about! (well, that and things looking nice)

 

 

8 hours ago, pro1ton said:

Also I stumbled upon this app which is a solid replacement for a "custom shell". The important thing is that it works for windows 10 and is packed with features.

 

Right on, though I doubt it's a replacement for the whole shell, but rather the start menu, although that's something I was having trouble finding a replacement for that which could be launched anywhere, so thanks a bunch!

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Oh, btw. I just remembered something else from your video. You said something about the clipboard dying at times. I too have experienced this many times and not only on Windows. Granted, the most I have experienced this has been on Windows XP, but most notably this has happened after a game or some other software like an editor to a game. I can't remember exactly which one(s) but it has happened that I play around with something and either after a crash or extended usage suddenly I can't copy any text. I do know that it has also happened on Linux but very, very, very, very seldom. That time I must've played some game or editor under wine that ended up being a system-wide clipboard killer (even the middle-click-clipboard).

 

 

On another note, if you don't like moving your hand off your mouse for a keyboard shortcut, maybe find a 7+ button mouse and map button and manipulation key combinations (shift, ctrl, alt, win, menu) so that most keycombos can be done from the mouse. No need to stretch for the Function keys or right of H. 😜

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Hey guys, I've been a fan of Accursed Farms for a few years now but have just now joined the site. 

Watching the GUI video, I got to the section on Linux, and really liked one specific GUI, even though Ross used it as an example of something too dark. Does anyone know how I can reproduce this in Ubuntu? I think it looks slick as hell.

The text is in Spanish so I don't think this is Ross' personal computer, but any help in replicating this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

 

guiShot.png

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It took me a while to figure out how Ross was doing the "no close button" on Firefox Tabs. I thought I'd post the steps to do it in case anyone else was interested.

 

I found that you have to enable the option toolkit.legacyUserProfileCustomizations.stylesheets in about:config. Then, create the chrome folder in your Firefox profile folder, create "userChrome.css" in that folder with this content:

@namespace url("http://www.mozilla.org/keymaster/gatekeeper/there.is.only.xul"); /* only needed once */

#tabbrowser-tabs .tabbrowser-tab .tab-close-button { display:none!important; }

 

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I also removed my tab close buttons after the video, and the new tab button (which was much easier to do), but now when I have ~8 or so tabs open, firefox doesn't react to middle-clicks in the little space that's left. I've tried putting a "flexible space" there from the customise menu, but that doesn't let me open new tabs by middle-clicking it either.

 

Any ideas to fix this would be appreciated, I'm just using Ctrl + t to open new tabs past 8 in the meantime.

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