Inspiration from existing UIs

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Inspiration from existing UIs

Martin Hanzel
I'm not sure it someone has mentioned this already, but I'd like to draw attention to Qt Creator - which, is an app to make programs. The interface really surprised me as it is very non-traditional and unique, and uses space extremely well, even on a netbook.

The buttons on the left switch into various 'views' or 'workspaces' but could also toggle features like the navigator or styles. A resizable pane can also be toggled by using the buttons on the bottom.

I know that this is far from an office suite UI, but it makes perfect use of limited space (on my netbook) and doesn't feel as claustrophobic as other applications I use. It would be interesting to see if we can produce a similar effect, perhaps by copying the UI to some extent, maybe replacing some boxes and buttons for other controls.

The size of the attached screenshot is standard netbook resolution - 1024x600.

Let me know what you think

-Martin

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Re: Inspiration from existing UIs

Nicolas Pujol
The interface is good looking and cool be a source of inspiration even if
the area of the software is very different from OpenOffice.

You can see screenshots here
http://qt.nokia.com/images/products/qt-designer-screenshot-mac and
here http://qt.nokia.com/images/products/screenshot-visual-studio-integration/image_view_fullscreen
until Martin give us his own.


2009/8/20 Martin Hanzel <[hidden email]>

> I'm not sure it someone has mentioned this already, but I'd like to draw
> attention to Qt Creator - which, is an app to make programs. The interface
> really surprised me as it is very non-traditional and unique, and uses space
> extremely well, even on a netbook.
>
> The buttons on the left switch into various 'views' or 'workspaces' but
> could also toggle features like the navigator or styles. A resizable pane
> can also be toggled by using the buttons on the bottom.
>
> I know that this is far from an office suite UI, but it makes perfect use
> of limited space (on my netbook) and doesn't feel as claustrophobic as other
> applications I use. It would be interesting to see if we can produce a
> similar effect, perhaps by copying the UI to some extent, maybe replacing
> some boxes and buttons for other controls.
>
> The size of the attached screenshot is standard netbook resolution -
> 1024x600.
>
> Let me know what you think
>
> -Martin
>
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> To unsubscribe, e-mail: [hidden email]
> For additional commands, e-mail: [hidden email]
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Re: Inspiration from existing UIs

Martin Hanzel
Of course!

There are so many features in this UI that we haven't thought of, for example, having panes pop up from the bottom instead of in a window (useful for document properties or the Page, Paragraph, or Character windows).

Anyways, here is an overview of some of the things that stood out, IMO. All of the screenshots are in netbook resolution (1024x600).

Qt Assistant is the included help viewer. It isn't too ground-breaking, but I've included it anyway. It supports tabbed browsing, a tree-like Contents, Index, and bookmarks. Not too different from what OOo already has in terms of functionality, but it looks a bit more streamlined. (Qt-Assistant-1.png).

Qt Creator is the big cheese. I've included some screenshots of it in action (pardon the programming jargon).

Lets start with the first one (Qt-Creator-1.png). It has a clean Welcome page, unlike the pop-up in OOo. Nothing too revolutionary here.

The Edit view (Qt-Creator-2.png) is the most interesting one. Despite a thick black button bar and sidebar on the left, it still manages to provide ample space for the open document on the right. The buttons change the current view, opening and closing panes as necessary. An interesting feature would be to implement this kind of behavior should OOo adopt a sidebar interface, with users changing the content of the sidebar at the press of a button. One button might display formatting options (bold, italic, etc) while another toggles styles. This is the best of both worlds for both the style-aware and the style-afraid portion of users.

Also, the two toolbars at the top and bottom are used to display information like the current document and section and page, for instance. They also might be changed to show common formatting buttons (bold, etc) like Apple's iWork.

The buttons on the bottom toolbar toggle a pane that pops up from the bottom. These might be used to display commonly-used items like the Page, Paragraph, and Character windows, popping them up in a tabbed, resizable, and scrollable pane instead of a seperate window. That way, the user can immediately see and apply modifications on text. Also notice the integrated search box.

Qt-Creator-3.png shows this kind of pane in action. Qt-Creator-4.png also shows a pane with the document properties, and collapsed sidebar. The blank button above the "Welcome" button might be used to show or hide the sidebar.

Qt-Creator-5.png shows Creator's integrated help system. (this is the same component as the Qt Assistant).

I'll also be creating a mockup of this kind of interface real soon (you can expect it tommorow or the day after at the latest). I think that this kind of UI has great potential, as far as space and aesthetics go.

-Martin


On Thu, Aug 20, 2009 at 1:40 AM, Nicolas Pujol <[hidden email]> wrote:
The interface is good looking and cool be a source of inspiration even if
the area of the software is very different from OpenOffice.

You can see screenshots here
http://qt.nokia.com/images/products/qt-designer-screenshot-mac and
here http://qt.nokia.com/images/products/screenshot-visual-studio-integration/image_view_fullscreen
until Martin give us his own.


2009/8/20 Martin Hanzel <[hidden email]>

> I'm not sure it someone has mentioned this already, but I'd like to draw
> attention to Qt Creator - which, is an app to make programs. The interface
> really surprised me as it is very non-traditional and unique, and uses space
> extremely well, even on a netbook.
>
> The buttons on the left switch into various 'views' or 'workspaces' but
> could also toggle features like the navigator or styles. A resizable pane
> can also be toggled by using the buttons on the bottom.
>
> I know that this is far from an office suite UI, but it makes perfect use
> of limited space (on my netbook) and doesn't feel as claustrophobic as other
> applications I use. It would be interesting to see if we can produce a
> similar effect, perhaps by copying the UI to some extent, maybe replacing
> some boxes and buttons for other controls.
>
> The size of the attached screenshot is standard netbook resolution -
> 1024x600.
>
> Let me know what you think
>
> -Martin
>
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
> To unsubscribe, e-mail: [hidden email]
> For additional commands, e-mail: [hidden email]
>


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