or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Software › Mac Software › Alphabet soup in our docks
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Alphabet soup in our docks

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Forgive my rant, but Macromedia is perpetuating an annoying trend with their icons. Rather than creating icons that are at least somewhat indicative of the function of their applications, companies like Microsoft and Macromedia are lazily designing unimaginative stylized "letter" icons.

Let's see, my dock already has a W, two E's, an X, and a P. Now if I choose to purchase Macromedia's MX line (and add those apps to my dock), I will have an F, an FW, and a D, (Scratch that, I hate Fireworks).

Granted, the green swirly thing and the pink swirly thing gave little indication of app function, but they were uniquely recognizable as the Dreamweaver and Flash logos.

At least if we had more apps that started with vowels, we could spell things in our dock.

From Think Secret:
post #2 of 16
xicons...

There are TONS of Macromedia replacements...

Granted I'm REALLY getting tired of my 2 E's a W and an H.

Mac Guru

[ 03-06-2002: Message edited by: Mac Guru ]</p>
"The young people of America need be taught that the only pride they may properly hold is in the content of their character, and the achievements they make. There is no legitimate pride or moral...
Reply
"The young people of America need be taught that the only pride they may properly hold is in the content of their character, and the achievements they make. There is no legitimate pride or moral...
Reply
post #3 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by Mac Guru:
<strong>xicons...

There are TONS of Macromedia replacements...

Granted I'm REALLY getting tired of my 2 E's a W and an H.

Mac Guru

[ 03-06-2002: Message edited by: Mac Guru ]</strong><hr></blockquote>

Hey, just add that 'd' that was in the first post and you'd have 'weed'. I think it should be a game we play here: dock scrabble. It would be fun
post #4 of 16
Hmm... I never really noticed the trend with all the letter icons. I've got 2 e's, 2 x's, 1 p, 1 w, 3 m's, 1 o, and 1 a. Sheesh!

[ 03-06-2002: Message edited by: starfleetX ]</p>
post #5 of 16
"Alphabet soup in our docks " <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" /> LOL <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" />
That's actually a pretty good point though.
post #6 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by starfleetX:
<strong>Hmm... I never really noticed the trend with all the letter icons. I've got 2 e's, 2 x's, 1 p, 1 w, 3 m's, 1 x, and 1 a. Sheesh!</strong><hr></blockquote>

isnt that 3 x's?
post #7 of 16
I'm disadvantaged... I only have an E and a B

Not sure if the B counts... it's BBEdit, and has been that way for years!

Amorya
post #8 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by janitor:
<strong>isnt that 3 x's?</strong><hr></blockquote>D'oh! Well, that shows you what today's university education is worth!

editing to fix...
post #9 of 16
Mac OS X provides us with 128x128 pixel photo-realistic icons, and all the major app developers are reverting to the most basic designs, letters. Ironic?
post #10 of 16
i have to admit, i have been really pleased with adobe's artistic direction with their icon design. very nice, and still good (though a little low contrast) when booted in mac os 9. (though can someone explain the whole curly-thing that acrobat has used since the beginning of time? i've never gotten that... haven't used quark 5 in classic/mac os x yet, but it looks like they're going towards that lotus flower for their new "brand identity." hmmm. oooo-kay.

the folks at iconfactory still make the most drop-dead gorgeous os x icons on the planet (dave brasgalla is a friggin' genius).

[ 03-06-2002: Message edited by: rok ]</p>
When you're lovers in a dangerous time,
You're made to feel as if your love's a crime.
Nothing worth having comes without some kind of fight.
Gotta kick at the darkness 'til it bleeds daylight.

-...
Reply
When you're lovers in a dangerous time,
You're made to feel as if your love's a crime.
Nothing worth having comes without some kind of fight.
Gotta kick at the darkness 'til it bleeds daylight.

-...
Reply
post #11 of 16
Yeah letter icons are such an ignorant display of un-creativity. WTF?

I can understand it with M$, but these other companies...I expected more.

And I really fu[kin' hate having a "W" in my dock. No Dubya reminders, please.
post #12 of 16
i think that you have to consider the 90% of other Mac users who are not power users like us... (I can just imagine my parents for example... they bought a cube and 15inch tft and do little else but word, email, and browsing... DOH!) will they remember the first letter of the application or some artsy image? Granted that when you scroll over the icons the name of the app appears, but still... I think that joe-user remembers the first letters of the application rather than a nice icon...
I'm having deja-vu and amnesia at the same time. I think I've forgotten this before.
Reply
I'm having deja-vu and amnesia at the same time. I think I've forgotten this before.
Reply
post #13 of 16
Well, I have e, W, P, X, B and Q (in that order) in my dock. I actually had to reverse my original order of EXcel and Powerpoint to avoid having XP in my dock. (Heaven forbid!)

I do agree that icons are turning increasingly unimaginative. In fact a strict definition of an icon would exclude letters. It's got to be some sort of graphic. The new 128x128 icons are pretty, but their often photorealistic nature bothers me. Icons are supposed to be stylized representations of the application for which they stand. E.g. How would you know what OS X's hard drive icon represents if you've never opened up your computer and seen a hard drive? Photorealistic "icons" are useless. I long for the late 80s, when Apple was the posterchild of good icon design.

I love the Adobe icons: they indicate their function wihtout letters and you can recognize an Adobe app by the family resemblance among the icons. But my all time favorite icon is the <a href="http://www.panic.com/transmit/" target="_blank">Transmit truck icon</a>. It's pretty, not a photo and indicates that you can use Transmit to truck files back and forth to a server via FTP. Brilliant!

Escher
"The only laptop computer that's useful is the one you have with you."
Until we get a 3 lbs sub-PowerBook, the 12-inch PowerBook will do.
Reply
"The only laptop computer that's useful is the one you have with you."
Until we get a 3 lbs sub-PowerBook, the 12-inch PowerBook will do.
Reply
post #14 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by ZO:
<strong>i think that you have to consider the 90% of other Mac users who are not power users like us... (I can just imagine my parents for example... they bought a cube and 15inch tft and do little else but word, email, and browsing... DOH!) will they remember the first letter of the application or some artsy image? Granted that when you scroll over the icons the name of the app appears, but still... I think that joe-user remembers the first letters of the application rather than a nice icon...</strong><hr></blockquote>

i don't think so. The iTunes icon is FAR better than a T or an i in the dock. The whole point of an icon is to convey emotion and purpose regardless of language, not to force the user to remember what his applications are named. Applications are used to complete tasks, and the task needs to be represented to the user, not the incidental and often arbitrary name of the program. (Excel? Entourage? Outlook Express? WTF?)
post #15 of 16
It'd certainly be nice to see the Mac OS X icon guidelines being followed... i.e tool on rotated document... perhaps with a small branding letter or something...


So, say, Excel would be a spreadsheet, rotated 45 degrees, with the little X in the lower right hand corner.

Powerpoint? Pile of Slides, P in right hand bottom corner.
Word, text document Ã* la TextEdit, with W.

You get the idea...
post #16 of 16
So glad there aren't any icons reminding me of Al Gore. Or Hillary. Yet.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Mac Software
AppleInsider › Forums › Software › Mac Software › Alphabet soup in our docks