Colored Icons

Finding many options in Renoise is like trying to find the layer mask option on Photoshop, you have to know where they are first before you can even make an attempt to find them—one of the biggest reasons for this is because Renoise does not use colored icons–everything’s basically monocrhome with colored window elements that don’t actually help one use the program any better–in fact, having monochrome icons while having “pretty” window decorations makes the program more cluttered and harder to find things–the window decorations have more going on than the icons, and that doesn’t just make sense for usability to me. A nice GUI should make a program easier to use, not just make it “look prettier” while making it harder to find important options. These icons are TINY—why make them monochrome on top of being so small?

I know I’ve asked this before, and the excuse that was given was that it might clash with people’s themes. Is your theme really more important than being able to see the actual options in the program? Is there some desire to keep Renoise retro-looking?

Sorry for my disgruntlement, I just can’t get my friends to switch–they can’t find anything.

Another solution: Ctrl+Space, type in a command name - as you type, Renoise highlights the controls which have matching terms in its tooltips. If there is only one matching control, hit Enter to click it (if it’s a button) or to focus it (if it’s something else that is focusable).

You could put this on steroids by popping up the list of matching items in the centre of the screen, with keyboard shortcuts listed beside each one. Use Up/Down/Enter keys to select one. (Try the Launchy utility for Windows to see this concept in action on your Start Menu. The way it matches misspellings and downright lazy typing is genius.)

This solution stays out of the way if you don’t need it, and won’t clash with themes. If you go the “steroids” version, it will also help existing users become familiar with the more obscure keyboard shortcuts more quickly.

(You can make it easy for newbies to be aware of this Ctrl-Space feature by describing it in the very first “tip of the day”.)

EDIT: This is a proposed feature, not an existing one! :slight_smile:

I did not know about Ctrl+Space. That’s good to know.

It’s not really a solution to the problem though. It doesn’t visually make anything easier to find, especially since the terms for many functions are different in Renoise than in many other music programs. It took me forever to stop calling a pattern a block. LOL

I have no problem with different colors for different icons, but really;…is it that hard to distinguish the transport buttons (play/stop etc)? Use Renoise long enough and even your friends will learn them eventually :slight_smile:

I am for sure also for everything that makes the GUI easier, but on the other hand adding another “dimension” via colors can easily result in a big mess. Hard to say if that works unless we make a visual draft for this…

Or does anyone know an application which successfully uses colors this way?

Or do you simply want to let the icons look like real symbols and not use different colors to separate/categorize them?

maybe add extra sliders for the different icons in the preferences/theme tab, make the default like it is now so that this is optional.

Only color I definitely know some programs use with corresponding icon = RED & record button :slight_smile:

Well, for one, you could add both versions of Play if you had colored icons–the play that starts from the beginning of the pattern, and the one that continues the song from the last point played. Green play button for regular play, blue play button for continue, red record button, and making that icon that opens up the side panel with the transpose options a different color so it can be easier seen. Another thing would be adding a rewind-to-the-beginning option and a forward to the end button. If those things were added without having some colored icons in that area, it would be confusing, which is why I imagine you’ve kept it only having a few buttons there.

If you have a bit of time, you could recolor some important ones yourself. They are in the textures folder.

It will accept those kinds of changes? That’s good to know.

I should also say that these icons aren’t a problem for ME. They’re a problem for those I try to get into Renoise.

I’ll probably try to set my friends up with it that way after modifying the textures. Again, that’s really good to know. :)

Thanks :)

Only guessing, haven’t tried out myself. Maybe they need to be monochrome, but worth a try.

We are closing in to create skins for renoise?

That would be great :)

This can already be done, no?
But seriously, I think that for me too many colors would just be distracting. I don’t think anyone has learned to use any music software without problems if the person in question wouldn’t read the manual, or even use it.

Not directly against this, but sense should be applied if implemented.

Themes are customizable. Custom skins are currently not an option.

I usually don’t read manuals before using programs because I don’t have the attention span. I fumble through every program I use and only use the manual if I’m stumped. Most of my friends are the same way.