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THE GUI SHOULD BE BETTER

If you ever wanted to know all my thoughts on the GUI, here you are! This has honestly been brewing in my mind for decades and while this video took way too long to make, it’s an accomplishment for me that I was able to put this into something coherent. I’m really hoping this leads to somebody bestowing GUI enlightenment upon us, though I’m not betting on it.

This post also doubles as a thread for people to post any helpful information regarding my GUI quest at the end of the video. Thanks in advance for anyone who finds some answers!

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This is like watching 1950's take on the future, like robots working in McDonalds but they all carry around oversized CRT monitors for faces.

Katie: "What's a GUI?"
Blahaglaflahblah: "Look at my eyes, Katie. One of them is a fake because I lost it in an accident. Since then, I've been seeing the past in one eye and the present in the other. So, I thought I could only see patches of reality, never the whole picture. "

"You don't get to bring friends."

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Yes, Ubuntu Mate. All hail.

"You don't get to bring friends."

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52 minutes ago, Ross Scott said:

 

(im sorry i dont know how to get rid of the quote)

Hi Ross, I'm midway through the video and you mentionned trying to upscale magic the gathering illustrations?

There's a utility that's similar to that called waifu2x.

Althought it was made originially for anime-style images, it should also work for photos. https://github.com/nagadomi/waifu2x http://waifu2x.udp.jp/index.fr.html

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I think there are two types of people in the world, product oriented and detail oriented.

Product oriented: Does it do more or less what I need it to do? -> Done. It's perfect. Any more revelry is a strain on my energy.

 

Detail oriented: Does it do more or less what I need it do? -> Not good enough. Every nail needs to be hammered down.

These people will understand each other, and one of these days we will meet in the field of battle.

"You don't get to bring friends."

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See also: the Eastern Front.

 

The Germans had much better small unit tactics, while the Soviets were concerned with grand strategy. We may all die in droves, but we will win in the end.

"You don't get to bring friends."

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42 minutes ago, jacquie48th said:

(im sorry i dont know how to get rid of the quote)

Hi Ross, I'm midway through the video and you mentionned trying to upscale magic the gathering illustrations?

There's a utility that's similar to that called waifu2x.

Althought it was made originially for anime-style images, it should also work for photos. https://github.com/nagadomi/waifu2x http://waifu2x.udp.jp/index.fr.html

I tested it with some art work, scaling it from 1600x900 to 3200x1800 and it worked flawlessly. It was painterly artwork and worked quite well actually!

This was done using the demo web app so I'm not sure how good it is for upscaling to specific resolutions if that is even possible. But I can confirm it works with painted illustrations and such.

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Posted (edited)

At one point of my life I was trying to become a librarian and of the things I should have learned was Information Architecture, which is basically half of your problems and your truths were basic principles there. The less clicks and less time used to get to the desired end, the best. But, yes, it seems like the user experience has been getting more and more "curated" and less open to experimentation/freedom, supposedly the people working on the GUI think that the way smartphones are doing things are better (easier/quicker with less clicks/taps) which also leads to harder to access and change the UI for your needs.

Good video, and, yes windows 98 had the best windows GUI, no need to change whats perfect.

Edited by luvearlykyary (see edit history)

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9 minutes ago, luvearlykyary said:

At one point of my life I was trying to become a librarian and of the things I should have learned was Information Architecture, which is basically half of your problems and your truths were basic principles there. The less clicks and less time used to get to the desired end, the best. But, yes, it seems like the user experience has been getting more and more "curated" and less open to experimentation/freedom, supposedly the people working on the GUI think that the way smartphones are doing things are better (easier/quicker with less clicks/taps) which also leads to harder to access and change the UI for your needs.

Good video, and, yes windows 98 had the windows GUI, no need to change whats perfect.

Many people don't use computers for "work", and those who do, use excel. For software developers/engineers (computers ARE work), hostile GUIs don't pose as big of problem since most of the time they work in a specific scope that can be fine-tuned. True power users are a dying breed.

"You don't get to bring friends."

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This has nothing to do with anything, but if he doesn’t already, Ross should have a Discord server

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Hey ross and friends, I thought of the ideas mention in the video, and think there a good project to do. https://github.com/HawaiinPizza/Ross-Good-Gui If anybody else wants to join in here it is.

Basically, the mousewheel, mouse gestures, and key bindings chord program with an important condition: you can set conditions for programs. So if you're in Doom 2, pressing Ctrl-Click does nothing, but when outside of doom, it changes wallpaper. The reason I WANT this so fucking badly, is I hate how you can't just disable global hotkeys easily. I had Ctrl-bracket left and right and Alt-bracket left and right control multimedia keys, and there were some programs were it didn't work for. If I can just have a way, to stop it for working in those programs, but works any other place, I'll be happy.

 

 

I do know one thing: this project will be in python/Go/any other programming langauge that allows for cross platform support. I initally thought about

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The whole video I was waiting for you to talk about window managers (WM) like i3 or dwm or even just fluxbox but you got mostly got stuck on the default DEs like KDE, GNOME or XFCE. Checkout this dwm build (this is not linux but the WM works for both linux and OpenBSD) or just go to r/unixporn to find something at least looks cool and can get you inspired.

If you dislike the colors (which are very nice imo), I would not even let that slide as a nitpick since it is very easy to change. Btw, people who prefer the terminal over the mouse have the same issues as you. It is inefficient to switch your hand from mouse to keyboard. Your solution is to make everything revolve around the mouse but theirs is to make everything revolve around the keyboard. Even using a webbrowser can be done by using something like qutebrowser or an addon like vimfy.
Modifying your GUI like this is usually called ricing which might be helpful for you if you want to look up more stuff on your own (e.g. type "dwm rice" into youtube or if you dislike dwm maybe look for i3, awesomewm, cwm, bspwm and you will find more videos than you would want to watch).
Now I am not delusional and know that for most people, something like dwm would be too much of a hassle to setup yourself. And I am not here to convince anyone to use it. Do what you want, I am not your mom. However, I think it is exactly everything I need in a WM. This is why people choose free software. They let you do whatever the fuck you want, even rewrite their code. With proprietary software there will always be artificial boundaries but with free software there are only real ones (such as your knowledge and skill). Not everything is perfect and sometimes it sucks but at least I don't have to bend over and say please to Microsoft or Apple.

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For anyone interested in seeing what true (but impossible for current systems) GUI enlightenment looks like, read up on the Genera operating system for the Symbolics Lisp Machines. That whole OS was so perfectly integrated that no other system to date has beaten it, and it came out in the 80s!

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I think forcing people to make their own gui is the way to go.

 

Id imagine that when you install an os it gives you a text on a black background(so there is no "default" gui that you see for the first time), it asks you what you want for your background(you can import it from a website), then it asks you what style are the windows(you can get them from the web or make them yourself), where are the buttons and how do they look, etc.

 

This way the user will make the gui and it will be the way they like it. Its important to not give the user a "default" gui because it will implant a gui in their head which will mess with their decisions. Its also important to make the gui creation as user friendly as possible(no messing with configuration files). Another thing that is important is how the user makes the gui. Everyone can agree that dragging and dropping assets from a toolbar is the best option; its intuitive.

 

If everyone took 20 minutes of their time making their gui, they wont have problems using it.

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1 minute ago, relt said:

I think forcing people to make their own gui is the way to go.

 

Id imagine that when you install an os it gives you a text on a black background(so there is no "default" gui that you see for the first time), it asks you what you want for your background(you can import it from a website), then it asks you what style are the windows(you can get them from the web or make them yourself), where are the buttons and how do they look, etc.

 

This way the user will make the gui and it will be the way they like it. Its important to not give the user a "default" gui because it will implant a gui in their head which will mess with their decisions. Its also important to make the gui creation as user friendly as possible(no messing with configuration files). Another thing that is important is how the user makes the gui. Everyone can agree that dragging and dropping assets from a toolbar is the best option; its intuitive.

 

If everyone took 20 minutes of their time making their gui, they wont have problems using it.

That actually sounds like quite a good idea. Maybe some Linux distro will do that someday.

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45 minutes ago, blazerules said:

I tested it with some art work, scaling it from 1600x900 to 3200x1800 and it worked flawlessly. It was painterly artwork and worked quite well actually!imageproxy.php?img=&key=0058c50e2e2043a4

This was done using the demo web app so I'm not sure how good it is for upscaling to specific resolutions if that is even possible. But I can confirm it works with painted illustrations and such.

From my experience of using the caffe desktop version of the program, it's pretty good at upscaling all kinds of images. And yes, it does allow for specific resolutions, as well as batch conversions!

I'd personally recommend waifu2x-caffe, and although it hasn't been touched in over a year, it still works fine out of the box.

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1 minute ago, Duuqnd said:

That actually sounds like quite a good idea. Maybe some Linux distro will do that someday.

Um, there are minimal distros which have the bare minimum of software installed. You can install X11 and whatever DE or WM you like and do not have to use some default DE. Now if you want a DE or WM without a default look that makes you design it yourself, I don't know if that exists..

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8 minutes ago, Duuqnd said:

For anyone interested in seeing what true (but impossible for current systems) GUI enlightenment looks like, read up on the Genera operating system for the Symbolics Lisp Machines. That whole OS was so perfectly integrated that no other system to date has beaten it, and it came out in the 80s!

Don't forget about the ergonomic Lisp keyboard
brackets.jpg

"You don't get to bring friends."

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2 minutes ago, Yllia said:

Um, there are minimal distros which have the bare minimum of software installed. You can install X11 and whatever DE or WM you like and do not have to use some default DE. Now if you want a DE or WM without a default look that makes you design it yourself, I don't know if that exists..

That's not really what the idea there was. Arch or Gentoo is always there if you want to brag about how cool you are, but a simple graphical installer that lets you customize the GUI would be better.

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