Apple's Ive brings software, hardware teams together in push for 'flat design'

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  • Reply 141 of 164
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by v5v View Post


     


    Still, there are aspect of it that could be changed to enhance ease-of-use. For example, I've seen several posts on this forum about the nuisance of having to drill down through settings menus to get at commonly changed switches like WiFi and Bluetooth. The addition of some kind of "macro" icon would allow those people to be happier and more productive while not having any affect whatsoever on those who don't care.



    The iOS system preferences definitely need to be, if not totally redone, then at least reorganised. I don't know how (that's the designer's job) I only know things are rarely in the first place I look.


     


    I also think 3rd party apps should not be allowed to add modules to the system preferences, their settings should simply be a screen in their own app. In makes sense in OS X to let certain apps add to the system preferences: apps that are daemons and don't have their own GUI. But that class of app does not exist on iOS. 

  • Reply 142 of 164
    ziadjkziadjk Posts: 52member

    When you quote a post, simply move the cursor up into the quote box and delete what you don't want to quote.

    Oh, cool, thanks!
  • Reply 143 of 164
    avidmacavidmac Posts: 12member
    I think Ive is restating the most important rule in design: Form Follows Function. Apple has gotten away from this basic concept, evidenced at first by the translucent menu bar and lately by the, uh, Address Book / Contacts Book which is less functional than before. As for the cutsy calendar design, it's plain awful.

    For what it's worth, I'm a longtime user interface and visual designer and user of the Mac for over 20 years.
  • Reply 144 of 164
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member


    Originally Posted by avidmac View Post

    As for the cutsy calendar design, it's plain awful.


     


    Change the yellow to black. Still whining?

  • Reply 145 of 164
    clemynxclemynx Posts: 1,510member
    jungmark wrote: »
    Sir Jony is a design guy. He just happens to design hardware.
    Who are these "a lot of people". You have a survey? People don't like change for the sake of change. We are creatures of habit. Now if functionality dictates change, so be it.

    v5v wrote: »
    In general I agree with the concept you put forward. I do find one aspect you pointed out to actually be useful though.

    In the image above the shadowing gives the impression that the top and bottom panels are fixed in space above a scrolling list below. To my slowpoke brain, that kind of visual cue helps me quickly and intuitively understand the controls -- the top and bottom and stay put, while the "layer" below them scrolls underneath them.

    In that case the skeumorphism is not just about appearance, it's a functional part of the interface.

    Lot of people = just about any reviewer and most people commenting, from personal experience.

    Of course there has to be some kind of separation between the section that scrolls and those that do not. A simple line combined with slightly different textures would do fine. If we buy into that metaphor completely, that would mean that the scrolling part would be under other parts, so if it were a physical object, it would be very impractical to scroll. It's like they created a representation of something no one would like if it were real. Same thing with the sharing buttons in the notification center. They aren't very visible and appear depressed, which is ridiculous for a button!
    Skeuomorphism is adding textures so that the user is consciously reassured by them. Like leather, poker table... Using light textures isn't skeumorphism, also simply because a texture doesn't need to represent an actual material. It's an ornament that the user doesn't see immediately. It's a lot more subtle and when Ive shows it, it'll be great.
  • Reply 146 of 164
    matt_smatt_s Posts: 299member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post



    I've said this before and it fell on deaf ears but Ive knows almost nothing about software design. This move is just as likely to be a bad thing as a good thing IMO.


     


    It's true, he's not the most accomplished software designer. Certainly not as accomplished as he is a hardware guru, judging by all his awards. Doesn't mean he can't get it done.


     


    However, if Mac OS X 10.8.3, or OSX 10.8.3 or whatever they're calling this piece of shit was done by experienced and polished Apple OS engineers, then I'm all for having someone else - ANYONE ELSE - have a go at it. Why not Jony?


     


    Maybe he will deliver an OS that doesn't obscure functionality from it's users, doesn't hide features stupidly, doesn't place grey on grey, and actually delivers smooth, reliable scrolling.


     


    We've been freaking scrolling since Sun started things in 1991. Scrolling in OSX 10.8.crap blows (see Mail.app, among others). It reminds me of Microsoft Excel many years ago - you'd try to go from cell C07 to cell E18 but instead, were instantly transported to cell WW38907. To MSFT's credit, they fixed the scrolling flaw quickly. Apple's issues were introduced in 10.7. We've been scrolling for 22-23 years, for crissakes Apple, fix this shit. It's elementary.


     


    Anyway: </rant>. Give Ive a chance. Nobody could do worse shipping the crap they're pumping out now, so why the hell not?

  • Reply 147 of 164
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by matt_s View Post


     


    It's true, he's not the most accomplished software designer. Certainly not as accomplished as he is a hardware guru, judging by all his awards. Doesn't mean he can't get it done.


     


    However, if Mac OS X 10.8.3, or OSX 10.8.3 or whatever they're calling this piece of shit was done by experienced and polished Apple OS engineers, then I'm all for having someone else - ANYONE ELSE - have a go at it. Why not Jony?


     


    Maybe he will deliver an OS that doesn't obscure functionality from it's users, doesn't hide features stupidly, doesn't place grey on grey, and actually delivers smooth, reliable scrolling.


     


    We've been freaking scrolling since Sun started things in 1991. Scrolling in OSX 10.8.crap blows (see Mail.app, among others). It reminds me of Microsoft Excel many years ago - you'd try to go from cell C07 to cell E18 but instead, were instantly transported to cell WW38907. To MSFT's credit, they fixed the scrolling flaw quickly. Apple's issues were introduced in 10.7. We've been scrolling for 22-23 years, for crissakes Apple, fix this shit. It's elementary.


     


    Anyway: </rant>. Give Ive a chance. Nobody could do worse shipping the crap they're pumping out now, so why the hell not?



    Question is how much control will he have over core OS functionality?  I'm assuming most of that is in Federighi's shop?

  • Reply 148 of 164
    kdarlingkdarling Posts: 1,640member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    People familiar with Apple's daily operations told The Wall Street Journal that Ive has been briefing the human interface team on prototypes earlier than usual in hopes of fostering a collaborative environment, and to allow software engineers time to better take advantage of upcoming hardware.


    The new inter-office dynamic, called "a thawing," is a change from Apple's previous workflow, which largely kept iOS software and hardware designers separate.


     


    How does this jibe with years of previous claims about tight integration of software / hardware ?


     


    Or did that claim have nothing to do with design, but rather simply refer to the fact that the Apple software developers only had to work on whatever the hardware side decided on?

  • Reply 149 of 164
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    kdarling wrote: »
    How does this jibe with years of previous claims about tight integration of software / hardware ?

    Since when does designing SW and HW to work well together with the bare minimum of overhead and waste (see Windows and Android as opposing examples) mean that the groups need to be lumped together into one giant blob?
  • Reply 150 of 164
    kdarlingkdarling Posts: 1,640member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post



    Since when does designing SW and HW to work well together with the bare minimum of overhead and waste (see Windows and Android as opposing examples) mean that the groups need to be lumped together into one giant blob?


     


    Nobody mentioned lumping them into "one giant blob".  They're talking about no longer keeping them as isolated blobs.


     


    The article is about "fostering a collaborative environment", which would allow design idea cross-breeding... and about allowing the software developers more advance notice on hardware features they could use.


     


    It makes very little sense for hardware engineers to do all the primary decisions, when the software engineers might have ideas like "sure wish we had a swipe area below the screen" or "a secondary super low power processor for background facial or air gesture recognition would be nice", etc.

  • Reply 151 of 164
    nikon133nikon133 Posts: 2,600member
    No, you don't actually hate skeuomorphism.

    Citation needed.
  • Reply 152 of 164
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,217moderator
    nikon133 wrote: »
    No, you don't actually hate skeuomorphism.

    Citation needed.

    If the design model was hated, all the instruments would be removed from Garageband. Having a drum set, piano or guitar in Garageband is not much less skeuomorphic than a game table in Game Center. It's not the principle that's the problem but how and where it's applied. In Garageband, it could be argued that there's a functional familiarity required beyond aesthetic but that doesn't apply to the photo shelves in the iPhoto app, nor the yellow color of stickies nor the microphone in the voice memo app nor the compass in the compass app nor the pins on the maps nor the railway clock they paid $21m for.

    The problem is just in places where they have exceeded the design necessary to achieve the familiarity and actually limited it by being overly specific and grotesque.
  • Reply 153 of 164
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member


    Originally Posted by nikon133 View Post

    Citation needed.


     


    Anyone who has ever enjoyed any aspect of computing interfaces since 1984 does not hate skeuomorphism.

  • Reply 154 of 164
    kdarlingkdarling Posts: 1,640member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post



    It's not the principle that's the problem but how and where it's applied.


     


    And what the skeuomorph is referring to.   They need at least to reference something that everyone remembers and perhaps even knew how to operate.


     


    Already we're into generations that have never actually seen... much less used... a round phone dial, large microphones, or reel-to-reel recorders, and who might not recognize once-common shapes like those of long bellied movie cameras, or film sprocket slots to indicate video, or recognize an LP record player stacking mechanism as a skeuomorph for adding more albums to play in sequence, or even album covers.


     


    Heck, we might be running out of real world non-electronic references for some things like storage, type of broadband comms, etc.  Or perhaps it doesn't matter  whether the storage is internal, cloud or removable?


     


    Thoughts?   More examples?

  • Reply 155 of 164
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KDarling View Post


     


    How does this jibe with years of previous claims about tight integration of software / hardware ?


     


    Or did that claim have nothing to do with design, but rather simply refer to the fact that the Apple software developers only had to work on whatever the hardware side decided on?



    Clearly it had nothing to do with design if Ive was using his own 'stealth' software team for prototyping (not sure what devices Forstall's team was using for testing).  In the iPhone chapter of Walter Isaacson's book when Jony Ive showed off the multi-touch stuff his team was working on Scott Forstall wasn't even in the room:


     


    ...Jobs called Fadell, Rubinstein, and Schiller to a secret meeting in the design studio conference room, where Ive gave a demonstration of multi-touch. “Wow!” said Fadell. Everyone liked it, but they were not sure that they would be able to make it work on a mobile phone. They decided to proceed on two paths: P1 was the code name for the phone being developed using an iPod trackwheel, and P2 was the new alternative using a multi-touch screen...

  • Reply 156 of 164
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    Anyone who has ever enjoyed any aspect of computing interfaces since 1984 does not hate skeuomorphism.



    No but they do hate bad/ugly skeuomorphism.  And there's plenty of that in Apple's software these days.

  • Reply 157 of 164
    nikon133nikon133 Posts: 2,600member
    Marvin wrote: »
    If the design model was hated, all the instruments would be removed from Garageband. Having a drum set, piano or guitar in Garageband is not much less skeuomorphic than a game table in Game Center. It's not the principle that's the problem but how and where it's applied. In Garageband, it could be argued that there's a functional familiarity required beyond aesthetic but that doesn't apply to the photo shelves in the iPhoto app, nor the yellow color of stickies nor the microphone in the voice memo app nor the compass in the compass app nor the pins on the maps nor the railway clock they paid $21m for.

    The problem is just in places where they have exceeded the design necessary to achieve the familiarity and actually limited it by being overly specific and grotesque.

    I know what you are saying, and I agree with you. I do.

    Skeuomorphic is everywhere.

    Shiny realistic gun with serial number in Battlefield 3? Check.
    Realistic dashboard from latest Ferrari, down to the last stich on leather wrapped Momo steering wheel? Check.
    Cessna cockpit for in-cabine view in latest MS Flight Simulator? Check.

    I love those. They have their purpose. I don't love calendar with remains of ripped off page in my iOS calendar. I don't need calendar simulation. Just functionality. I also don't like wooden bookshelf as it distracts my attention from actual books' covers, which is why I am browsing catalogue in iBook application.

    There are scenarios where, without skeuomorphic, experience for me would be poorer. But that is not every situation where skeuomorphic can be used. Simple fact that it can be used does not, by default, mean it has to be used. It should add to the experience rather than distract from primary functionality. This is, to some degree, matter of personal preference - beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and so is functionality. But I would expect, further you go into insisting at skeuomorphic at any cost, more and more people would disagree with it.

    However.

    I know people who want only targeting reticle in their FPS games. Gun reduces their viewfield and they play game to shoot things, not to admire light reflections on their virtual gun.

    I know people who drive always with bumper view (low point road view with no car elements visible). If they want steering wheel, they will get gaming wheel hardware.

    Flight simm, same. No cockpit, only relevant data in screen corners.

    I'd say that there are people who actually do hate idea of skeuomorphic, even if they will accept it as necessary evil in some situations. Or maybe will just stay clear of those situations. Skeuomorphic is simulated reality, but it still isn't real. Not everyone likes and uses Garage Band, not even among Mac owners. Right?

    So... when guy says "I hate skeuomorphic" and TS replies with "No you don't", I'd like TS to give me some insight of his. How does TS know that person actually does not hate it as general concept? What arguments is that statement based on? Is there a statistic presented somewhere? Or is this opinion just pulled out of... closet?
  • Reply 158 of 164
    nikon133nikon133 Posts: 2,600member
    Anyone who has ever enjoyed any aspect of computing interfaces since 1984 does not hate skeuomorphism.

    You are aware that bold statement like this also needs a citation, right?

    Like any other statement that starts with "no one...", "everyone...", "anyone...".

    Nothing against you. Only against generalizations. I sincerely think that no intelligent person should really formulate their posts in that way, ever. It took a lifetime for a smart Greek to realise he actually knows nothing. People who think they know everything sound like they are only at the beginning of their learning curve, if not ignorant that much to even realise size of their ignorance.

    I usually skip posts that start that way. You are among those I will actually read through, regardless. I guess there's a compliment in there.

    I personally enjoyed computing interfaces from GEOS on my CBM 128, Workbench on Amiga, Windows from 3.0 to 8, iOS, Android, PalmOS back in it's days. I wouldn't say that I hate skeuomorph, only pointless use of it. But I do like Metro/Modern more than classic desktop. Not that average desktop is skeuomorphic, not necessarily. Most will just try to simulate functionality of actual office desk rather than looks of it.

    But show me desktop that actually looks like quality wood table with everything else looking like tools and objects sitting on that table; opened and closed envelopes for emails, envelope knife for reading them maybe? Cassette player for my music library? Photo album for my galleries? There is a big chance I'd actually hate that.
  • Reply 159 of 164
    irelandireland Posts: 17,584member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by avidmac View Post



    I think Ive is restating the most important rule in design: Form Follows Function.


     


    Ive didn't speak

  • Reply 160 of 164
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,217moderator
    kdarling wrote: »
    And what the skeuomorph is referring to.   They need at least to reference something that everyone remembers and perhaps even knew how to operate.

    Already we're into generations that have never actually seen... much less used... a round phone dial, large microphones, or reel-to-reel recorders, and who might not recognize once-common shapes like those of long bellied movie cameras, or film sprocket slots to indicate video, or recognize an LP record player stacking mechanism as a skeuomorph for adding more albums to play in sequence, or even album covers.

    It does become a problem when it's something that applies globally to a large age range because they have to try and find the most familiar elements that work for everyone. The iPad seems to work though and it demonstrates another part of it where the design choices they make actually create familiarity rather than expect it. By making something so simple and intuitive or logical, it's already familiar. Children from really early ages can interact with an iPad because the gestures are so natural. The home button is now an iconic feature of the iOS devices.

    The places where skeuomorphism works seems to be places where the design in real-world objects can change but there are always the same basic requirements. Photos tend to all go on some form of shelf and in frames, compasses tend to have the needle pointer (not the digital ones but they have no familiar design anyway), instruments of various types have to be built in much the same way to produce the same sounds. The places where it doesn't work seem to be places where the design is not essential to what it represents.

    Calendars and games can be any number of hundreds of styles, none of which identify each other - a card game in a casino has no relation to a racing game in an arcade. So in those cases, they'd just take away the design elements that restrict the association to a small subset of implementations. Calendars typically all have the month/day/week views etc so the surrounding elements are not important. The Game Center one really broke all sense of decency. The flag icons for buttons, the dark backgrounds with dark text on top, the color scheme (blue + green + yellow + light brown + white + grey + red). I can't say similar features elsewhere look much better though - look at XBox Live Achievements or Playstation Trophies.

    I think the best they can do with raw stats is turn them into a nicely designed infographic like the following:

    http://mashable.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/ipad-infographic-large.jpg

    That way the only association is that you are looking at stats and it can look as nice as they want without fitting every design element to the concept of a game table.

    The same goes for the OS X Garageband wood effect, that doesn't really serve any purpose.
    nikon133 wrote:
    I also don't like wooden bookshelf as it distracts my attention from actual books' covers

    I agree, they even went with some tacky plywood texture. I don't mind the physical book representation, I quite like it when it animates opening but they can sit on a white background.
    nikon133 wrote:
    I'd say that there are people who actually do hate idea of skeuomorphic, even if they will accept it as necessary evil in some situations.

    It would always just be the bad implementations of it, never the entire concept. In your example with Battlefield 3, getting rid of the concept would mean getting rid of the whole game as everything in the game is a simulation of a real world counterpart. You'd have to get rid of folders in an OS filesystem, the trash can, the paint brush in Photoshop, the battery symbols, pretty much everything that has a real-world counterpart leaving only things that are abstract.

    People are defining skeuomorphism to be the UI elements they don't like and saying that skeuomorphism has to go despite the concept representing a huge number of things that work very well. Bad implementations of skeuomorphism should go and I have no doubt that the obsessive designers at Apple can spot the bad things very easily and will work to fix them.
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