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New homepage graphic (Ubuntu menu)

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ariadacapo's picture
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Joined: 2006-07-13

Since translations are coming along, I thought it would be necessary to "localise" the ubuntu application menu displayed on the homepage.

I took this opportunity to try new things. Taking inspiration from the graphics on the Kexi-project homepage, I tried to put some perspective effect on the menu.
This has two advantages:
- It looks nice without being too flashy
- It avoids users mistaking the menu for part of the actual website (this has happened already as I could read in a review).

A trial version is available at:

http://www.getgnulinux.org/index2.htm

The question is whether this is too much. Do you find the effect intrusive or inappropriate? Should we stick to the original version? Please give any comment that goes through your mind.

I shall wait another three days to see whether the application menu changed in the latest release of Ubuntu.

Thanks

Olivier.

free-zombie's picture
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Joined: 2006-03-08
I get a 404 on the image.

I get a 404 on the image.

ariadacapo's picture
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Joined: 2006-07-13
fixed
free-zombie wrote:

I get a 404 on the image.

Pardon me... fixed.

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04
That looks cool. I like it.

That looks cool. I like it. Smiling

tbuitenh's picture
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It looks nice, but it makes

It looks nice, but it makes me wonder if the image is appropriate in that place. What is it supposed to tell us?

"this is what GNU/linux looks like"
Not really, GNU/linux could like anything (even LCARS!).

"this page is about ubuntu GNU/linux"
No, it isn't.

"GNU/linux has menus"
Well that's a relief!

"You can do anything with GNU/linux"
I guess that's the real message, right? It's not very clear.

libervisco's picture
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I see another possible

I see another possible message. "GNU/Linux can look good!" Eye

Because of that I like it like this.

tbuitenh's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-21
I would suggest something

I would suggest something like this svg image.

It's only a quick sketch I made in inkscape. Because Tango icons are licensed cc-by-sa, this file has to have the same license. I would have put a penguin in it, but I couldn't quickly find one with a compatible license.

ariadacapo's picture
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tbuitenh wrote: What is it
tbuitenh wrote:

What is it supposed to tell us?

It's a good question.

I needed one simple image that would sum up the whole of GNU/Linux for everyday users. I could not think of anything better than the menu, because it says: It has a "start menu" just like Windows - It's nice and clean and understandable.
The extra advantage is that it's tanslatable. For most "lambda" users around me, software in French is a relief, for example.

But a couple of screenshots, maybe set-up like on the Kexi page, could do the job well as well. All that I wish is that it stays simple - because we only get one chance to make a first impression and that no visitor should ever think "it's not for me".

Unfortunately tbuitenh, I cannot read your file (with either Eog, Firefox, Gimp, Inkscape...) . I blamed my poor connection but there seems to be an error within it.

I'll try to work out something with screenshots for the coming 24hrs, so we can settle on a decision. Please anyone post your suggestions here, thanks!

dylunio's picture
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file
ariadacapo wrote:

Unfortunately tbuitenh, I cannot read your file (with either Eog, Firefox, Gimp, Inkscape...) . I blamed my poor connection but there seems to be an error within it.

I get the same problem - it's due to some extra foo at the end of the file. I've cleaned up the file and put it up here. If you want to clean the file yourself open up the file in a text editor, go to the bottom and remove the stuff between the 'Libervis' comments.

dylunio

tbuitenh's picture
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*sigh* stupid blog software,

*sigh* stupid blog software, a svg file is not a text file!

at least it doesn't modify pngs: http://www.libervis.com/blogs/3/tbuitenh/resource/main_album/download/windows.png

ariadacapo's picture
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summing up

Excellent tbuitenh - I like your proposal very much.
There were many proposals for printscreens in the translation mailing-list, so I thought I would compare all main proposals.
We can compare easily with these test pages:

[A] actual design
[B] with perspective ubuntu menu
[C] couple of printscreens
[D] tbuitenh's proposal

All of these are trials that can be improved! This is just to get an idea of the look.

My preference goes for B then D then C. I think it's best to keep very simple and enable localizing, so the screenshots don't really match up. What do you think?

Olivier.

PS licensing is not an issue - we will respect the original authors' choices...

nwrman's picture
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My vote is for D

I think it could be a mixing of option D and what has been said in the translation mailing list

Miguel said:

tbuitenh made a good point about it. In my opinion, there should be a screenshot showing the multiple
capabilities of Linux (you can do anything with GNU/Linux).
What about a screenshot contest? We could make a image map with some captures of people working with Linux:
Enlightenment, Gnome, Kde, Xfce, console (framebuffer)...
An example could be: http://www.frankmanno.com/ideas/css-imagemap/
I am talking about WORKING with Linux: screencaps of web-designers, students, 3d design, administrators, etc

I guess the though question here is: what should a screenshot need to show to be simple enough as Olivier pointed out?

tbuitenh's picture
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I guess each screenshot

I guess each screenshot should show a pretty windowmanager decoration and one application.

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D is also my choice

Hi all,
I think tbuitenh's proposal is really good.
The only thing missing now is the internationalization (i18n) available in Linux, but it is visible with the tabs in the main page.

I have done a test page for my proposal, too. You can check it:
http://anilinux.hopto.org/test/

Instead of showing my background, the one of tbuitenh could be used and load the screenshots with some sort of decoration such as lightbox.

I am 'open' to suggestions Smiling

libervisco's picture
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I actually quite like all of

I actually quite like all of them, but C and D probably the best. C because it presents two nice looking screenshots of a productive desktop so it implies that GNU/Linux looks good and is productive (duh! Laughing out loud ). D because it in a more simple way actually says that it can be productive, good looking and cool, that is, have transparent windows. Eye

So I'd split my vote between C and D. I wouldn't mind D winning at all. Smiling

Alternatively, the screenshot contest doesn't sound like a bad idea either.

And welcome aboard Kuan! Smiling

tbuitenh's picture
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I forgot to tell I put an

I forgot to tell I put an implicit message in my quick design: "yes, you can use linux for playing games and editing movies"

ariadacapo's picture
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keep it very simple

We have to decide what we want to say.

My idea for the message is: "you can use GNU/Linux too".
For this, it needs to be apparent that it's not very different from Windows, usage-wise.

I think the "collages" and "screenshots' screenshots" and ideas of competition that are proposed are too complicated. We should keep in mind that people who come from Windows only ever use one desktop, on one desktop manager. They're everyday users.
At all cost, we should avoid the message "so many possibilities you'll lose your mind". This will make Joe User think "it's not for me" and it's not even true. Let's look at the facts: we're mostly young, male, with a penchant for "very cool" on computing. Most users aren't like that. They want things to just work. They are "My Mom".

In my opinion, introducing new concepts like "different window managers" or "multiple window captures on one page" is too much for the homepage. These are things that are perfectly fitted for PolishLinux, but not for a very-first-time introduction.

So. I must say my preference is still balancing between all four possibilities, including just keeping the menu "as is".
Probably, C is the choice that works best as a compromise, since it suggests there are different looks but says little more. I could maybe reduce the perspective effect and/or change the colors to obtain something simpler?

Keep commenting so we can settle on something!

Olivier.

PS: Don't misunderstand me. I think the screenshots are cool! Just too much for the homepage. We could put them in an "advanced" section in the Screenshot page for example.

PPS: Sorry for previous double-post. My connectivity is terrible.

Gustavo's picture
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Hi all. I vote for B: I

Hi all.

I vote for B: I think we are better off sticking to the KISS principle (Keep It Stupidly Simple) in this case Eye

Cheers.

a thing's picture
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B

I say B too. [possible overanalization warning] The tilt of the menu is kind of like an arrow inviting you to come on in and move forward.

ariadacapo's picture
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Let's go for D

What a difficult choice.

Simply by counting votes I think we should go to D.

It's "mostly" chosen by Nwrman, tbuitenh, Kuan (?), Libervisco (?), Miguel (?) and me (?) (although no-one seems to be sure!). Each of the other possibilities gets less support (as far as I can observe).
It might not be "the perfect most representative choice" but it's the lesk risky. The meaning comes through easily and we avoid problems related to the choice of a distribution.

Unless several members scream out in despair, I will put this graphic on the homepage in a day or so when the Spanish translation is released. I hope no-one is offended by the choice...

tbuitenh, I much prefer the corrected svg version to the png you set-up, because the X looks more like a "close button". Is it ok if we use a version similar to the svg, with completely "perpendicular and straight" crosses?

Thanks

Olivier.

tbuitenh's picture
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It seems you get a different

It seems you get a different X in your SVG because you don't have the font I used. I actually like my more "playful" X, but if you insist on a straight X then at least make sure it is a bit smaller so it fits inside the windows properly.

If something I made is "just a sketch", then it is licensed IDCLMA (I Don't Care Leave Me Alone): do whatever you like, as long as you don't suggest it is a design you paid me for Sticking out tongue .
That said, do adjust that X because then it will look better. If you want my X after all, but a different scale, just tell me the image width or height in pixels.

a thing's picture
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why not D

I don't like D because it's just a drawing; it's not showing GNU/Linux.

ariadacapo's picture
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final proposals
a thing wrote:

I don't like D because it's just a drawing; it's not showing GNU/Linux.

But what will? We only have 200px width and 0,5-1 second of the visitor's attention to get a message across. The drawing is not the most exact but is the less controversial and the less likely to be misinterpreted.

tbuitenh, I like your licensing policy for sketches Smiling I changed the crosses so they are more easily recognised as close buttons.

So now two final proposals:

[D] tbuitenh's proposal with modified crosses
[E] the same with the classic "perspective & shadow" recipe

Unless there is some general disagreement I will go for E.

Gustavo's picture
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Hi. I vote for E, but I miss

Hi.

I vote for E, but I miss something that also represents freedom.

Cheers.

ariadacapo's picture
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Gustavo wrote: I miss
Gustavo wrote:

I miss something that also represents freedom.

Ah... who doesn't? I guess it's impossible to represent. If any ideas come up let me know Smiling

Olivier.

libervisco's picture
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A flying pigeon (darn I

A flying pigeon (darn I almost wanted to say penguin). Laughing out loud

I'm just kidding though.. One way we represent freedom on Libervis is by a sun coming out of the box (in a Libervis logo and there's also a sun as my avatar Sticking out tongue). The idea comes from an obscure woman called Catherine Phelps which licensed the image and the concept as free.. and so we embraced it here..

Not sure if some variation of that could be used here...

Maybe one of those windows in the graphic could contain a sun shining with all colors as if someone drew it in?

tbuitenh's picture
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There are three problems

There are three problems with using a sun:
1 totally non-obvious
2 Sun Microsystems
3 suggests the other "free", at least in Dutch there is a saying "Only the sun rises for free".

Gustavo's picture
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I don't know either
ariadacapo wrote:
Gustavo wrote:

I miss something that also represents freedom.

Ah... who doesn't? I guess it's impossible to represent. If any ideas come up let me know Smiling

I know that's a hard question... Not even I have something to suggest.

I think that It would be great if this graphic has an element that represents freedom, something like the Statue of Liberty, but I know the Statue of Liberty is not a good candidate because people will think that Linux has something to do w