Jony Ive expected to replace iOS, OS X textures with clean edges & flat surfaces

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  • Reply 61 of 198


    Don't confuse metaphors with skeuomorphs. Software graphic metaphors such as Desktop, Folder, Spinning Watch and Trashcan are what made Macintosh "the computer for the rest of us" by associating familiar visual cues with similar virtual concepts. The Trashcan icon per se is not skeuomorphic, but in OSX its realistic rendering is a skeuomorphic treatment.


     


    The skeuomorphic orgy of Game Center has its roots in Job's original vision for a computing environment that was intuitive for ordinary people that had never used a computer. Skeuomorphism is essential for modern gaming but since the attractiveness of real world materials and textures is so subjective, Apple would be smart to minimize skeuomorphism in most of its software interfaces. After all, millions of people world-wide are looking at these screens; there's no way everyone finds stitched leather or brushed metal attractive. Even so, humans generally are attracted to patterns, textures and pleasing color combinations. The great designers at Apple are masters at creating beautiful, subtle textures and shadings that have much more universal appeal than explicitly realistic renderings. Maybe now with Scott Forstall no longer pushing for hokey torn paper edges and wooden elements we'll see more refinement and subtlety. Flat, un-appealing surfaces and edges are extremely unlikely.


     


    Regarding the use of metaphors; perhaps these can be more subtle too. Presumably the whole world is now comfortable with virtual environments and "intuitiveness" can be re-imagined. Now that Scott Forstall is gone and this internal conflict is being aired I can see how the original brilliance of metaphors devolved into a mandate that became a major limiting factor in the ongoing development of the Apple ecosystem.


     


    Those pictures of Jony Ive's house were most likely the photos used in realtor listings; in other words, they reflect the previous owners' taste. It wouldn't surprise me a bit to see some fabulous architectural spreads at some point when he gets interiors that suit him.

  • Reply 62 of 198
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member


    There is much needless handwringing and celebration here. The confusion comes from the uninformed throwing around of terms like skeuomorphism, minimalism, flat, etc. Even the article points to the trash icon as skeuomorphic, which it really isn't. It's a very detailed but it's an icon. To really understand all this you would need a lot of experience with design, HCI, semiotics, visual art, and philosophy, which few of us have. Suffice to say, the real problem with SF was that he didn't get all of this, he didn't know he didn't get it, and he couldn't work with people who got it better than he did. As a result, among other things, incoherence and confusion was creeping into the user interface of OS X and iOS. I think under JI there will be a better environment to return to greater clarity and coherence. This doesn't mean icons, whimsy, playfulness, and beauty will disappear. It means function, clarity, consistency, and usability will be the foundational priority. Beauty, simplicity, fun, whimsy, and playfulness can't be forced. They will arise naturally from that consistent foundation, as is appropriate to the particular case. This is the essence of design.


     


    Quote:



    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    Software designed to look like real-life textures, such as linen or felt, is expected to become a thing of the past at Apple now that designer Jony Ive has taken over the user interfaces of iOS and OS X.




    Scott Forstall was previously in charge of iOS software, but his departure from the company was announced this week, while Ive will serve as head of Apple's Human Interface decision making. Forstall, along with late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, was a strong advocate for skeuomorphism, which is a type of design that replicates real-world objects digitally.




    But Ive is said to loathe skeuomorphist designs, which means Apple's software is expected to have a significantly different look and feel in the future.

    "You can be sure that the next generation of iOS and OS X will have Jony's industrial design aesthetic all over them," one unnamed Apple designer told The New York Times. "Clean edges, flat surfaces will likely replace the textures that are all over the place right now."


     

    . . . 



    Some skeuomorphic designs are helpful to users, like the trash bin utilized in OS X for deleting files.

  • Reply 63 of 198
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,983member
    malax wrote: »
    three-door compared to two-door/tudor.  har har.

    You're a riot.
  • Reply 64 of 198
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,983member
    Hate, hate, hate skeuomorphism. Especially that dreadful GameCentre. It is naff.

    Lie down on the couch and tell us how you feel. I'll get my pencil and pad.
  • Reply 65 of 198
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,983member
    valkraider wrote: »
    I loathe GameCenter and Find My Friends.
    Some skeumorphism is OK, but those interfaces are so out of band that it is annoying.
    Skeumorphism needs to make sense. It shouldn't be there just because.
    Why the hell does Find my Friends need to be bound in leather? Are your friends located in the Necronomicon? GPS and location tracking are a *new* thing, there is no need to hide the modern aspect of the functionality.
    Game center at least relates to gaming in some fashion (although I contend that perhaps a board game look would fit better than a casino look).
    And of course Ive won't be personally designing UI. However he does set design guidelines and expectations, and he will have Veto capability.

    We don't know exactly what he will be doing. I would be surprised, however, if he doesn't make some changes himself, and direct others.
  • Reply 66 of 198
    Hate, hate, hate skeuomorphism. Especially that dreadful GameCentre. It is naff.

    I doubt that people who use GameCenter a lot really care all that much.
  • Reply 67 of 198


    Thank God.


     


     


    I doubt that they'll completely eliminate them.  Simply offering a choice of skeumorphic or clean presentation would go far.

  • Reply 68 of 198
    mj1970mj1970 Posts: 9,002member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SixPenceRicher View Post


    Simply offering a choice of skeumorphic or clean presentation would go far.



     


    Don't hold your breath waiting for that.

  • Reply 69 of 198

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post


    I never heard a word out of Forstall's mouth that didn't sound like it originated from Jobs. When one is going through what Jobs went through, it helps to have an energetic surrogate, but now that Jobs is gone...





    Sounds like you talk to Scott often?

  • Reply 70 of 198

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SixPenceRicher View Post


    Thank God.


     


     


    I doubt that they'll completely eliminate them.  Simply offering a choice of skeumorphic or clean presentation would go far.



     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post


     


    Don't hold your breath waiting for that.



    Indeed, as if Apple makes a habit of allowing us to customize.


     


    Having said that, the Game Center cannot just be all silver and no motif. Perhaps they'd allow some "skin", which is the extent of iOS freedom you get anyway.

  • Reply 71 of 198
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,524member
    gazoobee wrote: »
    This isn't even in the "rumour" category. This is merely repeating the idle speculation of other bloggers.
    Personally, I doubt that Ive will have much "hands on" with iOS design at all. Industrial and 3D design shares almost nothing with 2D and software design. Just because Ive can design an iPhone, doesn't mean he has any idea what to do when it comes to software.
    I've said this before, but one only has to look at Ive's horrible taste in clothes and the intensely tacky house he recently bought to see that his skills are not as wide as some people believe.

    And I've said this before: You, who wanted to see a plastic back on the iPad mini, have demonstrated that you have the worst taste of anyone around here.

    Let's see the inside of your "house" Gazoobee. Then again, let's not . . .

    But stop talking shit about Ive's taste. Your trollish "colours" are showing.
  • Reply 72 of 198
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,983member
    desuserign wrote: »
    There is much needless handwringing and celebration here. The confusion comes from the uninformed throwing around of terms like skeuomorphism, minimalism, flat, etc. Even the article points to the trash icon as skeuomorphic, which it really isn't. It's a very detailed but it's an icon. To really understand all this you would need a lot of experience with design, HCI, semiotics, visual art, and philosophy, which few of us have. Suffice to say, the real problem with SF was that he didn't get all of this, he didn't know he didn't get it, and he couldn't work with people who got it better than he did. As a result, among other things, incoherence and confusion was creeping into the user interface of OS X and iOS. I think under JI there will be a better environment to return to greater clarity and coherence. This doesn't mean icons, whimsy, playfulness, and beauty will disappear. It means function, clarity, consistency, and usability will be the foundational priority. Beauty, simplicity, fun, whimsy, and playfulness can't be forced. They will arise naturally from that consistent foundation, as is appropriate to the particular case. This is the essence of design.

    Quote:

    I wouldn't say that SJ didn't understand it. Without knowing him, and speaking to him about it, you can only guess at his understanding and aims.

    But moving people off what they know, and moving them into something entirely different is difficult. I know that from my own experiences in designing equipment. Even with engineers, it's tough. When HP came out with the first digital scopes, one of which I bought, they used new concepts in the interface. Gone were all the old knobs, and in we're buttons, and on screen controls that were use centric. This was so difficult for engineers to wrap themselves around, that HP went partially back to the older interface for several years.

    You need to bring people around a bit at a time (no pun intended!). They have to feel comfortable. Look at all the critics of Win 8. This may be too much at once. So skeuomorphism is there to help that transition. Over time, it can be dispensed with.

    Most people here are too young to remember anything from before OS X, in early 2001. Before that, there were many programs, free, shareware, and commercial, that existed for the sole purpose of allowing people to take Apple's UI and distort it to unrecognizability (not a real word, I know).

    We had windows that looked like various woods, stone and even creeping vines. Hi tech looks and low tech looks, fantasy and notwhat. Some made it almost impossible to even make sense of what the screen looked like, but it was considered to be an advantage of Apple's system software, as opposed to that of Microsoft, which allowed very little change. That came to a halt with OS X, to many complaints among users and developers.

    Now, we're arguing about minor infractions of some rigid thinking that none of this is correct. Well, just look at the Modern UI of Win 8 to see an extreme of this thinking. Do we want to go there? I hope not!
  • Reply 73 of 198
    sockrolidsockrolid Posts: 2,788member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    But Ive is said to loathe skeuomorphist designs, which means Apple's software is expected to have a significantly different look and feel in the future.


     


    YAY!!!


     



    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    In particular, the felt, casino-style table top in Game Center, and the "Corinthian leather" that appears in the Find My Friends and Calendar applications.


     



     


    The faux-felt of Game Center doesn't bother me.  The leather texture in Find My Friends and Calendar doesn't bother me either.  Those are simply background images that can be easily swapped out for something cleaner.


     


    The skeuomorphic graphics that really bother me are the ones that use up screen space for no reason.  Like the fake torn paper edges in Notes (in iOS and OS X.)  Anything that wastes pixels on screen is bad IMHO.  Every pixel is important, especially on mobile device screens.  


     


    Note: when I say "waste" I mean "using up screen space that could otherwise be used by more information."  So skeuomorphisms like the spinning reel-to-reel tape deck animation in Podcasts don't count as "waste."  Because there's not much to display while the podcast is playing anyway.  But burning up a few pixels' worth of space that could otherwise have been used to display an extra line of text (torn paper in Notes) does count as "waste."

  • Reply 74 of 198
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,743member


    I like skeuomorphism in certain apps, it all depends.


     


    I like how iBooks looks like a bookshelf with real books. If anything, they can make it even more realistic and 3D looking now, and take full advantage of retina displays which allows for greater details and texture. I don't want some flat grey background for iBooks. I also like how iBooks mimics a real book when turning the pages.


     


    I also use a lot of music apps, and I like apps that mimic and look like real hardware, especially if somebody is used to the real hardware.


     


    I don't like how gamecenter looks, but I don't really give a shit about gamecenter, since I don't use it anyway.


  • Reply 75 of 198

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post





    I doubt that people who use GameCenter a lot really care all that much.




    Indeed. As it stands, when you are using GameCenter, you don't really see any "skeuomorphic" motifs (man, are people overusing this word or what). You see the pooltable-green background with the wood borders. But is it really a big deal cleaner to change it to another color or tone? I expect Ive's influence will be more meaningful, yet fundamental. He is not a frivolous man.

  • Reply 76 of 198
    Current Apple products remind me of Frazier Cranes apartment.
    Modern hard lines and materials on the outside, classic leather and cashmere on the inside.

    I actually like it,( but then, I've always liked Frazier) ;)
  • Reply 77 of 198


    DO NOT CHANGE:


    - Notes


    - Game Center


    - Passbook


    - Reminders


    - Compass


    - Voice Memos


    - iBooks


     


    All these work fantastically by giving the app a distinct look and providing great visual feedback by replicating/mimicking real world items.


     


    PLEASE CHANGE:


    - Calendar


    - Contacts


    - Find My Friends


    - Podcasts


     


    These apps suffer from too much design that detracts from the user experience.  Contacts as a book is much more difficult to navigate.  What exactly is the leather interface of Find My Friends supposed to me mimicking?  The reel to reel look of the Podcasts app is a bit too cumbersome.  I think Calendar is the least offender here, but I really dislike the faux leather look for some reason.  Especially on the Mac it really bugs me.  The torn pages look is great though.


     


    For OS X in general, I'd like to see a much more unified look.  Menu bars should generally look the same throughout the OS.  Please, no leather on the Mac.  The exception would be that I like when an app on iOS and OS X look similar.  So Notes and Reminders on the Mac shouldn't continue to be inspired by their iOS counterparts.

  • Reply 78 of 198
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,616member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by alansky View Post



    If Jony Ive places functionality above all else, why is the new iMac so thin that the RAM is now non-upgradable? How is that a benefit to anyone (unless you spend your time gazing fondly at the new iMac's slim profile)?!


    Non, really. But my bet is that the evidence shows that less than 1% ever upgrade Ram.

  • Reply 79 of 198
    igrivigriv Posts: 1,177member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


     


    I think Forestall is (perhaps unconsciously) aping his mentor again by getting "fired" at the peak of his career.  Remember, Jobs was an abrasive asshole as a young man also.  Now Forestall will spend a few years in "exile" doing some other project that won't work out, only to return to Apple after he has matured as a saviour of sorts in 2022 after Tim dies and Schiller has retired to his lazy-boy recliner.  


     


    As for skeuomorphism, it gets a bad rap because most of the tech press is, well ... techies.  And they have no idea about design or the possible reasons for such skueomorphic designs.  True, they have gone a bit too far lately but many of Apple's designs in this category are not only successful and popular, they are necessary.  


     


    Think about it.  If iBooks wasn't a book shelf but a simple list of titles for example, how does the average user tell the difference between a list of books on their device and a list of items in the store?  They *need* two separate metaphors there.  


     


    It's also confusing enough for the average person to tell the difference between iTunes the store (on their device) and iTunes the player (on their device).  Apple is introducing a whole new group of people to computers for the first time with iOS.  People who didn't previously use them because they found the whole deal confusing.  Just because a bunch of techies don't like skeuomorphism, doesn't mean that HUGE numbers of average people aren't greatly assisted by the concept.  


     


    Try showing Microsoft's "flat" "modern" Metro UI to a bunch of seniors and then come back and tell me how flatter is better and that skeuomorphism isn't needed.  Metro just a bunch of pretty squares to most non-computer savy folks and completely unusable.  



     


    Steve Jobs was 30 when he was fired, Scott Forstall is 44 now. Whatever his excuse for being an abrasive asshole, age is not it.

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  • Reply 80 of 198
    igrivigriv Posts: 1,177member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by paxman View Post


    Non, really. But my bet is that the evidence shows that less than 1% ever upgrade Ram.



     

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    A lot of the iMac users are in design firms (architecture, advertising, etc), and it is important for the machines to look cool. None of them EVER upgrade the RAM -- not cost effective to disrupt people's work, might as well pay a little more upfront.


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