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DigitalDeuce
07-19-2003, 06:24 PM
Here's two shots of what the development of the interface for LightWave 8 is shaping up like.

I'm posting them kinda big so you can read it.

These are early concepts that are created in Photoshop (so they are not actual screengrabs) and are the two that seem to be the favorite around here. These are also just representative of the "look" -- nothing representative of workflow is shown.

Bear in mind these are early development sketches - and might not have any resemblance to the final version. Besides, these don't even have the character setup or dynamics tabs.

http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/mockup_a.jpg

http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/mockup_b.jpg

richpr
07-19-2003, 06:37 PM
Very slick!

TerryFord
07-19-2003, 07:12 PM
Wow, interface preview, unprecedented! :)

Thanks for the tantalising glimpse. Dynamics and Character Setup hmmm?...

I like them both, but I prefer the grey one, it looks more "hardcore" to me. Ideally the UI colours and gradients would be user definable/saveable/loadable without resorting to config file/text editor... Looking good though...


Regards,
Terry

policarpo
07-19-2003, 07:24 PM
i like the dark gray one.

but the gradient in the background is kind of distracting. any chance the background could just be a solid gray color tone? or tweaked so it doesn't feel like there is a highlight on the UI surface coming from no place in particular?

i like the feel of the buttons and controls in both also.

thanks for posting the screen shots. :D

Zithen
07-19-2003, 07:32 PM
I like the second one best. Not sure if I like the rounded buttons. It's almost looking like the very first LW versions.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-19-2003, 07:58 PM
No integration? Sniff. I like em both but I like the second one better. Softer on my eyes anyway. Of course, colors should be customizeable.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-19-2003, 08:01 PM
Changed my mind. I like the dark one better. No wait...

John Fornasar
07-19-2003, 08:09 PM
Nice shots, either color ok, however, I prefer the rectangular buttons in 7, they are less distracting.

hairy_llama
07-19-2003, 08:18 PM
I think I agree with John Fornasar, I like the simpler look.
I would really like to see a style more like this:

http://www.3dpoder.com/foro3dpoder/upload/lightwave_vx_interface2.jpg

Lightwaver "matt" created that.


I just found his LW verX interface site:
http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/

Doug Nicola
07-19-2003, 08:21 PM
Thanks for the shots and the hints...

I also think the rounded buttons are not a good idea. Looks too chunky/clunky to me. Too much like old old LW versions.

I've very much liked the way the interface has evolved to the streamlined rectangular buttons. It's very easy on the eyes.

The rounded buttons seem to grab my eye in an unpleasant way. Also, with so many buttons, rounded edges look very cluttered.

riki
07-19-2003, 08:34 PM
Thanks Deuce for posting some screenshots.

I'm not too sure about the rounded buttons, with the dropshadows.

I like grey becuase it's neutral, but maybe the top ones a bit dark.

I'm also not too keen on the gradient.

I think some intelligent colour coding, in relation to buttons is helpful, but shades of grey don't work as well.

I don't like the butter yellow colour, it makes me think of margarine. :)

It's looking good though, can't wait to see the final product.

Stranahan
07-19-2003, 08:36 PM
I love Matt's stuff. I wouldn't expect any major changes like that in 8.0, for a couple of reasons.

1) One design goal that everyone has in mind is to not screw up the transition from 7.x to 8.x - this was, IMO, a fairly fatal flaw in planning from 5 to 6 to 7 - it screwed everything up that you knew already. So, the idea is to retain legacy, but obviously with new features added there will be new buttons.

2) No time. It's just not a priority given everything else that needs to be done.

And of course, nothing pleases everyone. One idea is to possibly include some alternate UI designs with the release - but again, that would be within the current paradigm. Some good feedback here so far, though.

hairy_llama
07-19-2003, 08:51 PM
Even if you where to keep the workflow the same I like Matts "look". Its very understated in a way which I like. I feel that the new interfaces are a little to "in your face". I like the subtle color differances and the lighter happier "feel" of Matts. I understand though if you can't create a totally new interface in time. Out of the two you have up I would probably pick the second as its not so distracting. Just my personal opinion.
Thanks for putting them up for the community.

Kuzey
07-19-2003, 08:53 PM
The rounded buttons clash too much with the sharp group panels on the top...me thinks.

It's going to be great to see how this develops :p

Kuzey

Stranahan
07-19-2003, 09:19 PM
There's another interesting point my brother raised about the darker look, which is why Combustion and Fusion use it - easier to see for color critical stuff.

And Proton made a great point to me last week, too. He said that at a certain point in using any application you're not really 'looking' at the interface anymore - you're just going where you know the buttons are. So, an interface that fades into the background is better.

One obvious thing though - people want more ability to set up the interface the way they want. That seems to be a good development goal.

CIM
07-19-2003, 09:22 PM
I like the style--it reminds me of XSI in a way. I think the multi-colored buttons should be dropped becuase they look so hokey, though. Let ppl. add rainbow colors or whatever in if they like that.

Anyway, we gonna see some REAL workflow improvements? That's where LW REALLY needs the work. The last thing needed are some stylized, round buttons.

hairy_llama
07-19-2003, 09:23 PM
"One obvious thing though - people want more ability to set up the interface the way they want. That seems to be a good development goal."
Yep :)
Being able to create completely custom skins would really rock...

phrick
07-19-2003, 09:26 PM
I've never liked programs that look too "flashy". IMHO interfaces shall be straightforward and have a plain look. It's the stuff you produce with it that should shine.

I've taken the liberty to do a mockup of my own (only of the lights panel so far). I haven't color coded any buttons yet, but I'm planning to.

http://www.superstereo.nu/temporary/phrick_L8_mockup.gif

You can download the Photoshop original here (http://www.superstereo.nu/temporary/Lw8_GUI.psd) if you want to play with colors and stuff (requires Photoshop 7.0+).



Have a nice day, guys...

Earl
07-19-2003, 09:52 PM
Having skins for the LW interface (that users could modify and create) would be sweet. However, personally I'd rather stick with the current 'look' (7.5c) LW interface. The colors could be better, yeah, the functionality could definitely be better, but more importantly the whole thing is just easy on the eyes and groups, menus, checks/option boxes, buttons, and fields are all very easy to identify. Ultimately the most important issue is function and easy of use. If the interface is too graphical, it could very well distract the user.

I sorta feel that these concepts, while well designed graphically, don't really solve any interface issues and although they look cool they present new issues that didn't exist with the previous versions' interface (6.x-7.x) - including:



Bottom buttons for "Objects, Bones, Lights, Cameras" are hard to distinguish since their dividers are the same as the dividers for the shortcut key. I just looks overly complicated. Perhaps taking the shortcut key dividers out and simply making the shortcut key a lighter color (so it can 'fade' into the background for those who don't want to pay attention to it).
Rounded buttons (although look nice) do clash with the 'tab' look up top (Objects, Scene, Display, etc).


Obviously these are just concepts - and they'll be improved. I am eager to see what comes out, though I must admit I'm a bit worried. I agree with the idea of the darker interface 'fading away' so you can focus entirely on your work, but I just don't feel that changing the interface colors/look should even be done until the whole interface gets an overhaul to re-organize the workflow issues that cause headaches. I also am not really fond of a phased interface change. If it's going to be changed, I think it's best to change it all at once - just make sure it's changed for the better first! That way people don't have to get a 'new' interface with every upgrade. Instead, there's just one change that they can either decide to go for or decide not to go for. But afterwards they learn it and get used to it, they can expect SOLID CONSISTENCY with upgrades. Interface consistency is so important. The only interface changes should really be reorganizations and ultimately full integrations of things that weren't integrated before (core plugins, dynamics, character rigging, modeler?, etc). Don't mind that stuff in parenthesis - those were just examples for the type of things that would warrant interface workflow changes.

Well, I'm sure you guys will pull off something really cool...I just hope the 'interface' changes aren't simply eyecandy, but rather based upon functionality.

Last personal note: Matt's LightWave vX interface designs just ROCK. The functionality of the docking, floating, stretching, moving, etc - everything he's got there would help LW out in ways that I think are highly underrated. NewTek really should just buy the ideas from him and start from there. Create all that functionality, all that customibility (include custom colors and shading), and I don't think anyone would truly complain. Even if they didn't like it they could easily move things around until it was back to the old 7.x setup.

Well, there's my over-wordy but humble opinion. Lookin' forward to v8!

Earl
07-19-2003, 10:06 PM
Hi Martin,

Your post came up while I was posting mine, but I wanted to add that I agree with you completely. A graphically appealing interface is more sublte in its appeal than flashy. It can look good, but it must be sublte and simple. Your image is a nice example of this idea.

And it's not because his is 'light' in color - it could easlily be dark. But the simplicity is what makes it nice (IMO). The simplicity is also what makes Matt's nice.

Beamtracer
07-19-2003, 10:21 PM
The Mac version should be Aquafied.

Wouldn't it be easier to keep the Mac look and feel, rather than going for a different look? I assume the same would apply to the Windows version... Microsoft-style windows would probably be easier to create.

richpr
07-19-2003, 10:32 PM
Integrate a skinning system and supply a classic (LW7) skin, and new LW 8 skins (like these new ones)... Everyone happy...

For those who want it shiny, or Maccy or whatever, download a skin or make one...

stef
07-19-2003, 10:49 PM
It is a pity that NT did not opt to utilize the ready and by far the BEST resource/solution in that department.

Here's my recent email to the original creator that sums it up:

QUOTE
To: [email protected]
Subject: LW UI

Hi Matt,

I hate to visit your website, because I feel that if NT does not incorporate your ideas I shall be very, very disappointed....

I wish LW8 can 'sport' that type of interface as well as the Surface Editor solution proposed by the LWavewer from Greece. That alone would in part justify the price of the upgrade (+ improvement in some flagrantly missing areas - weighted edges a la Cinema4D + more control on Sub-patches, etc.).

Thanks for your effort and if NT does not utilize it - too bad for them...

Kind regards - Stefan (New York).
UNQUOTE

jin choung
07-19-2003, 10:55 PM
hey deuce,

thanks much for the early heads up! it is indeed unprecedented for us to have before release peek and opportunity for feedback.

but as the consensus seems to be, superficial APPEARANCE of the lw interface is one of the very last things that most of us care about.

alone, without a significant update of the underlying philosophy, and workflow of the menus, the look can't matter less.

i do think that the look is fine but it wasn't really an issue to begin with.

but are we gonna get bought out by the DFX people? it looks just like their interface.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

we need standard scroll handles on all long list pop ups, in modeler, EVERYTHING in CONSTRUCTION>ADDITIONAL re-assigned to sensible tabs and the elimination of the CONSTRUCTION tab altogether, a different interface to allow for different kinds of OPENGL views (like textured with wireframe, etc).

also, the ability to have tear off and DOCKABLE windows would greatly improve workflow. let us dock the 'p' properties in both modeler and layout.

anyhoo, good start. hope there's deeper stuff too. luck.

jin

Stranahan
07-19-2003, 10:55 PM
Stef,

All due respect - I don't think you're aware of the amount of work to implement that vast a change, nor do I think you realize how it would make many users heads explode. The goal in LW8 is simple - don't lose users with a radical makeover.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-19-2003, 11:02 PM
"Anyway, we gonna see some REAL workflow improvements? That's where LW REALLY needs the work. The last thing needed are some stylized, round buttons."

Amen. Gotta say after waiting so long for 8 I was expecting a bit more "Wow!" from a first glimpse. As long as there is some heavy duty stuff under that "character setup" tab, I'll be happy.

Stranahan
07-19-2003, 11:05 PM
Jin,

The consensus is that there's no consensus. There are a lot of different opinions - that's great, everyone is listening.

But the tone of your post is somewhat negative, as if this is it.

I thought Deuce was really clear - this is one thing, it's fairly superficial and he mentioned that other changes exist.

The look is an issue for a couple of reasons, mainly related to marketing. One, it's a good idea to have the product LOOK different so people know it IS different. Something as simple a color change signals that. Second, it is a goal to integrate the look somewhat more with Digital Fusion / DFX+ because there's an overlap with many of our Hollywood users, and a growing number of 'main street' users. Third, some of the sneak peeks you'll be seeing don't include the new interface, so NewTek wanted people to know that the interface will be changing somewhat.

There's not going to be a significant change in the menus, because they aren't the problem, either. There will, however be a lot of workflow improvements and see those as the days progress - and of course, with LightWave when you buy into an upgrade, you're buying into multiple free upgrades, as well. Who know what will hapen in the future?

And Chris - this wasn't a first glimpse at anything but exactly what Deuce said it was the first look at. I think you'll be happy, too.

Zithen
07-19-2003, 11:07 PM
I really think that LW, at this point, should come into its own. Don't try to copy or be like other programs, especially compositing programs that serve an entirely different purpose. That's a more technical application. LW is for creating, modeling and animation.

Please be innovative, take a few risks and be a better program. If being a better program means altering/changing things, then so be it. I personally did not have any problems moving from 5 to 6 to 7. I don't understand what the "fatal flaw" was. As long as the changes make a better program and UI, then I have absolutely no problems wanting to take the time to learn/adjust to the "new" and better way. But it must be better, or else it's pointless.

Saying that, I think the LightwaveVX UI designed by Matt is a great example of an attempt to try and introduce something better. It's slick, cool, well designed and new. It has a welcoming and all purpose, neutral mood and feel.

In contrast, the first UI pic DigitalDeuce posted looks very much like LW1, with the rounded buttons and darker grey color. That was because LW was bundled with the Toaster and everything had to have the same look. It's not a very pleasant tone for an animation program, in my opinion. Why go back to the "old" way? Keep it light. It's animation. I don't want to feel like I'm on the Death Star, here.

I disagree that the UI just fades into the background the more you use it, suggesting triviality. The UI will ALWAYS have an effect, we just aren't usually concious of it. The color, contrast, brightness, look and design of the UI reflects tone and feel that will certainly effect an artist on the subconcious level. If you're animating Care Bears, it won't help to work in a dark, technical UI. If you're animating Night on Bald Mountain, maybe a dark UI could help put you in the mood. These are things that the UI designer should think about and put some time in.

A neutral colored UI and design, like the lighter grey color, to me would be ideal because it offers a feel that is suitable for most creative conditions.

I'm very curious as to what LW8 will be. I thought more time and attention would have been spent on the UI design for LW8. I was also hoping that LW would become a more "creatively welcoming" app rather than a technical one.

DigitalDeuce
07-19-2003, 11:09 PM
workflow stuff --

like -- what if you right-clicked on a value field -- and saw this popup window?

Things like this really assist in the workflow.



http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/rightclick.gif

lord
07-19-2003, 11:10 PM
Hmmm,bit more stylish I guess. reminds me a little of Softimage's inteface.

Will be glad to see the end of that brushed steel thing.

Personally I still want to see some real interface improvements implemented not just a surface make over, Matt Gorner's idea's are a good place to start. NT Really need to find a solution to fix Lightwaves cluttered mess of layered floating panels.

There's nothing to say you can't mix the stylistic aesthetics in the images provided by Deuce with the practicle functionality of Matt's design concepts.

well that's what I reckon's anyways.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-19-2003, 11:25 PM
"And Chris - this wasn't a first glimpse at anything but exactly what Deuce said it was the first look at. I think you'll be happy, too."

Cool Lee. I have been very "happy" working with Lightwave lately, so I should have said "I'll be happier". :)

cgolchert
07-19-2003, 11:30 PM
Originally posted by Stranahan Jin,

But the tone of your post is somewhat negative, as if this is it.

That is because it IS IT...as of that post that is all Jin saw of LW8. The second post showing the add envelope thing was after. After all the hype that has been posted including a thread closure on CGTalk you HAVE to expect backlash along with the shouts of joy. When the first (and at that point only) thing shown was a photoshop mockup. :)


The look is an issue for a couple of reasons, mainly related to marketing.

Isn't Jin one of the people you are marketing to? He gave you feedback based on what you gave him.


We all know that LW8 will have more than a color change. It just seems like people are surprised when the hype machine backfires with a few people that want more than an admittedly "faked" image.

Zithen
07-19-2003, 11:31 PM
Mr. Stranahan,

The philosophy you are giving us is not what I want, nor does it appear to be what many other LW users want. If Newtek is listening then I hope they have/are acting on it.

It will NOT make our heads explode to have a different, yet better UI or app. A well thought out and intuitive UI will be easy to learn and adjust to anyway. Even pleasant. Presently, LW is fairly easy to move around in and get a handle on.

The biggest problem with it is the workflow between Layout and Modeler, plug-ins that are not well integrated into the UI and other fundamental things that have been mentioned by others many, many times. Most of us believe that in order for LW to advance the way it should, a drastic change is inevitable and necessary. As long as the change is better, it will be welcomed, not scorned, as some at Newtek seem to believe.

Stranahan
07-19-2003, 11:45 PM
Just call me Lee...

And let's chill for a moment, everyone. We don't disagree as much as might you think.

I'm really glad for everyone's feedback. But Deuce was 100% clear about what this was. The thread name is clear - not LightWave Sneak Peek, but LightWave 8 - Interface Early Concept. Right? And the letter posted by William stated that a number of things would be shown.

Nobody's opposed to a better interface, or even a radically different one. But radical change is not what is happening for LightWave 8, overall. Could happen in an upcoming release, but not in the next one. There are a number of reasons, including many many complaints about all the changes between versions. There are techincal issues. There are time issues. And there will be changes to workflow in many areas, and you'll hear all about them in the coming weeks.

As Matt C. would probably be the first to tell you, it's one thing to design an interface. It's quite another to implement it. It's totally another to post it online - that part is REALLY easy.

The idea is for NewTek to show parts of LightWave[8] and get feedback. Some people are going to be somewhat negative, no matter what gets posted - and most likely they will be the same people who are always somewhat negative.

Is that disheartening? Yes, it is. And it's especially so when the post was very clear about exactly what was being posted. That's exactly why many people at NewTek don't want to post here. Hell, that's why many PEOPLE don't want to post here. The internet breeds rude thoughtless comment - and lord knows I've made plenty of them, myself.

But, it's not going to stop. NewTek is committed to staying the course. Much more to come - and (almost all of you) are going to be very very happy.

jin choung
07-19-2003, 11:54 PM
hey cgolchert,

thanks for the backup... sums up my reaction (and chronology of events :) ) pretty well.

lee,

i don't think i was negative of deuce's work at all. as i said it looks good and it's fine to me.

my negativity has to do with the 'brains behind the outfit' that considered the look to be an issue over more core and fundamental issues - such that resources are being diverted to superficial looks over more comprehensive changes.

but deuce's later example with the right click is a GREAT addition and should improve workflow substantially. color me heartened.

but you know what makes MY head explode? that the CONSTRUCTION tab doesn't mean anything. create and modify meant something. construction means jack crap. better to have create1/create2/create3 tabs than have a single badly conceptualized 'construction' tab.

you know what makes my head explode? the ADDITIONAL button.... the renovated architecture of being able to make most functions plugins was a fine idea. until it meant that newtek could just get lazy and give us a crap load of functionality - that just gets dumped in additional.

and if you think that the ideas that i listed are so far out as to make other lw user's heads explode... oh man.... we're gonna have issues.

jin

jin choung
07-20-2003, 12:07 AM
oh and to further elaborate on my POV,

i detest bull$hit. and i tend to call it when i smell it.

i detest superficiality. i shave my head and jeans and a t-shirt is probably what i'll get married in because i don't give a crap about how i look. (though i really do like smoking hot blonds for some reason).

style over substance is not my idea of a good time (except for the aforementioned smoking hot blond).

that's why i also take issue with whole 'lite' thing. it's a smoke screen.

and though you guys can't be faulted AT ALL for starting the revelations at whatever angle you wanted, starting out with the 'look' of the menus which i never ever complained about (yep, never even commented about the brushed steel look) lanced a very sensitive pet peeve.

combined with the strategy of doing a lw8 upgrade sales event without even releasing a feature list for lw8 (and the sole selling point being a completely separate software package) predisposed me to anticipate a very thick smokescreen for lw8 and starting out the p.r. campaign with the look of the buttons didn't help assuage my fears.

but consider me relaxed. the first impression kinda shocked me but i am hopeful.

jin

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 12:08 AM
"my negativity has to do with the 'brains behind the outfit' that considered the look to be an issue over more core and fundamental issues - such that resources are being diverted to superficial looks over more comprehensive changes. "

You're not in discussions about LightWave at NewTek, so let me assure you - this statement isn't accurate.

I agree with you, totally, about the Additional menu.

I don't want this thread to go far afield or turn into a discussion about other UI issues. Deuce posted the concepts, and I want people to give feedback with it turning into a pointless rathole. That's not to say the discussion isn't valid - just doesn't belong here.

Zithen
07-20-2003, 12:11 AM
Negative comments serve no purpose, but to discourage.

Criticism however may sting, but it shouldn't be taken as negative. It's constructive. It's the only way something will get better.

If Newtek posts something and all they get is praise, then that means LW has reached a state of completeness and perfection and there is no more work to be done.

It's strange that LW8 will not be a radical change, so to speak. It's been nearly 2 years since LW7. But I will simply wait to see what LW8 is all about and make the judgement then.

Psyhke
07-20-2003, 12:33 AM
hey jin,

More to be heartened with: Deuce stated there are multiple Layout undos in LW8. Kind of smacks of the core substance effort you are concerned with.

***

I really appreciate Newtek's openess to share this stuff, knowing that they had to know it very well may open a can of worms. The look and feel of the app IS more trivial than hard core technical issues and thus is more of a valid and fun subject to throw out in a casual back and forth setting such as this message board is.

Just because Newtek is sharing this cosmetic interface with it's users doesn't mean they haven't been listening all along to workflow and functionality issues such as the hundreds of issues discussed on the feature requests forum. And they have stated as much many times.

Weren't folks asking for Newtek to be more open about their plans-- well it seems they are starting to do it. What do they say, be careful what you ask for? Here it is maybe up to 6 months before the release of the next version and they are showing hands on previews at SIGGRAPH in a week, and showing cosmetic interface concepts for feedback here.

DigiLusionist
07-20-2003, 12:48 AM
Matt's interface is the way to go. Plain and simple.

I'm not sure why we would be asked for our input if Lee's going to immediately shoot it down. We also don't need to be instructed on the way of the world and how development cycles work, and how hard it is to implement anything.

If NT made radical changes to LW's interface, we'd all still be using it. The transition from L5 to L6 proved that. I wouldn't worry about losing anyone because of that.

Not updating LW's functionality will be the reason NT loses users. Matt's proposed interfaces are superior and no amount of back office rationale would make me think any differently.

I would also say that I pray LW gets an overhaul soon.

Thank you, Deuce, for sharing these with us. I hope our feedback is valuable, even if not all of us convinced they are the way to go.

archiea
07-20-2003, 12:49 AM
Duece,

Thanks for the preview post, and thanks even more for the request...

Some comments...

I still prefer the original LW screen for its minimalsim. In fact, the minimalism I saw in that LW VX page posted earlier is more desireable...
To address the issues of some flexibility of the intereface, how about some basic color palettes for starters? Have preset colors for LW7, "discreet", neutral grey (tied perhaps to the color profile of the monitor) and a lighter, low contrast color like on the LW vX page.

Functionality:

I recently go this great kennsingtopn Optical trackerball with a turnable ring around the tracker ball. What would be REALLY great is the ability for one to click in an input field, say the red channel value of 167. If I click on it so that the cursor is on the 6, I should be able to use the scroll/ring button on the mouse or trackerball to move that value up or down. So its click, slide, click slide, without having to touch the keyboard. Don;t know if this is already implimented.

I also have the Nostromi N50 speed pad that is becoming as invaluable to digital artist as it is for gamers. Considering the repetative keyboarding, this device provides 10 buttons x 3 functions, a 90 degree scroll button and a hat switch. Check it out. You're hand just rests there...

mastro3d
07-20-2003, 01:15 AM
Modeler and Layout still separated??? No!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mastro3d
07-20-2003, 01:20 AM
The wolf loses the hair but not the vice!

takkun
07-20-2003, 01:21 AM
I don't know if anyone else has mentioned this but it looks a lot like Digital Fusion's interface with the dark colors and the rounded buttons. Very cool, I always thought darker was better, much easier on the eyes. About the customizable buttons or themes, that sounds great but not if it will delay the release of 8.0, I could wait for that feature in 8.5 :)

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 01:33 AM
I'm sorry if you feel like I was shooting you down. That wasn't my intent, at all.

I have said that there's nothing keeping more radical interface changes from happening a few months down the road, but they aren't going to happen short term. I can see where this might be seen as shooting something down, but it's not. Let me explain.

Part of the confusion is on LightWave[8]'s ship date, If you think it's going to come out in six months, then I can see why my comments see negative. If you knew that LightWave was going to be released much sooner than that, then you'd see I was making a statement of fact. Does that make sense? It's a different way of looking at it.

When is LW8 coming out? There's no answer to that. Some people want to ship it soon. I'm one of those people. Some people want to wait a bit, and we have already announced Q4. I will let you know the issue is actually up in the air, and it depends on so many factors that I wouldn't bet either way. NewTek will probably announce a firm ship date at SIGGRAPH - or they may not.

I have already said that I like Matt's interface. Some other people do, too but let me just say again - nothing is simple. Some people -hate- it. It's not simple - everything seems simple when you have strong opinions. I suffer from this, all the time.

It's very easy to think of things in black and white. What NewTek is doing here is opening the door and letting you see some of what's going on behind the scenes. That's hard, because the internet is more about people popping off responses than trying to see the other person's point - and so people dash off things that oversimplify things. I've done it myself, and certainly will do it again. What I'm asking for is a less combative style of discourse - one that recognizes that staing the complexity of a situation isn't always a cop-out.

One other factual point - if you think all of our users will use radical interface changes, you're mistaken. We actually had a lot of people not upgrade to 7 because of the experience with 6. We do market research, both formal and informal and this came up as an issue, over and over. So, while it may not be an issue for YOU - realize that it is, in fact, an issue that has directly effected our bottom line in the past.

mastro3d
07-20-2003, 01:42 AM
Nice, very beautiful the chromatic choices.

DigiLusionist
07-20-2003, 02:04 AM
Lee, there's nothing THAT radical about Matt's interface. So why would NT fear users' heads would explode if it went that route? That is the implication you made and I guess I would like to be given more credit.

Like you, I've been training people on LW for years. My market research suggests LW users are made of sterner stuff. Of course, that's my experience and opinion. I am neither NT, and I don't know who it is you guys have been polling or talking to. I find the implication that a tentative development approach is being taken in an effort to keep us from looking at a new, improved LW and then huddling in a corner, rocking back and forth, mumbling, very condescending. Which is the reason I felt strongly enough to express this view.

I am a professional user. And, as a user, I would like to state for the record, that I personally CAN handle any changes to LW if it will vastly improve it. Now, if you need more than my lone opinion for that to be perceived as valid, then others who feel the same way should share their POVs. I doubt I am the only one who feels the way I do.

In the end, I have read many of your posts, in which you state "IMO." And many times, I disagree. But, they are YOUR opinions. I simply would like it if differing opinions are dismissed as being facile or uninformed.

If NT only goes by your opinions, then statistically, the opinions of users like me become unimportant. And, therefore, why ask for feedback? Which is what Deuce is inherently asking for by opening a discussion thread about the UI designs.

policarpo
07-20-2003, 02:19 AM
I really like Matt's UI comps, but his design direction would require a complete rewrite of LightWave from the groundup.

It's not a simple task of just making the LW UI skinnable. There are deep and penetrating architectural issues that will come into play once the LW dev team really looks at making LW a next gen application.

As a UI designer I know first hand what is and what is not doable when it comes to redesigning an application's UI. At this stage we can hope for incremental changes and workflow optimizations in LW 8 and 8.5. That is the best we can hope for.

It's the whole, Polish the rust out of the metal concept and maybe add a few elements that can be welded on to the surface.

If the UI is radically different, where true functionality is addressed, you need to start from the ground up and evolve it properly. Can you say complete rewrite. :)

Let's hope LW 9 will see to this.:D

m_luscombe
07-20-2003, 02:21 AM
In the spirit of offering constructive criticism, as per Lee's advice:

Part of any design is managing "negative" space. An interface without enough of it looks cluttered. When you add the bevels to everything, you do one of two things:

1) Space everything apart, so less can be on the screen at the same time. (The OSX way. I'm a mac user.)

Or

2) You fill the negative space we once had (the space between the buttons) with more detail. More clutter. Like bevel shading.

I find all the detail with the shading above and below the buttons and the AA on the rounded bits and the glowing "clicked' buttons is too much. It's starting to feel a bit Poser-ish. It's constrasty enough that it's fighting with the text.

Although I hate to jump on a bandwagon, I will to some extent.

If you take out all the "speculative" bits (the completely new interface elements) and just took the "style" from that VX shot: the look of the buttons, the spacing and the colour, and applied that to the current LW interface (with a dark option for those so inclined) I think you'd be on your way to having a winner.

Matt's idea has beauty in simplicity, like Porsche or Audi. It looks powerful and forward-looking, without being gaudy.

Overdoing the bevels is a lot like Chevy putting "speed fins" on their "future cars" from the 50's.

Did I put enough words in quotations there? Just imagine Dr.Evil reading that back with the hand signals for quotes: then we will attach the "laser" to the moon.

I love the comment about wasting the dev team's time with eye candy. Yeah, that's what happened: all the hardcore C(+) programmers took a month off to play with photoshop. Everything is at a standstill until we decide between round buttons and square buttons. No dynamics code can be written until that crucial piece of the puzzle is in place.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:25 AM
Matt's interface is a total redesign in a number of ways. I'm not the tech person, but it would take a fair bit of work to implement it. This isn't a reason not to do it, however - it's just a fact. Poli stated this REALLY well.

I explained that the 'radical change' factor was one reason, not the sole one. Here's a big one against Matt's design - a lot of people at NewTek hate it. I'm not one of them - I brought Matt in on UI discussions on this board. But it's not a slam dunk, by any means.

I never doubted your word, Digi - I believe you could handle it. I believe a decent percentage could. I also believe you can handle what we'll give you in LW8, which won't include interface changes to the extent of Matt's. I don't think you have a lone opinion. I don't even think you're wrong - but it's not going to happen in LW8, I don't think - for reasons I stated previously.

There's a statement I once heard about movie reviews. Basically, it said that you should review the movie they made - not the movie they COULD have made.

In this case, Deuce didn't ask for unlimited, open ended, say anything feedback or UI suggestions. He asked for feedback on two choices. He asked how people felt about A or B - because, more or less, those at the two options at hand. Are there a number of possible varients within there? Sure, of course - but it wasn't a question beyond those two possibilities.

That being said, it's all good information and thanks to everyone for it. But there's not a consensus on much of anything - some people feel strongly about Matt's design, some like the dark rounded buttons look, and on and on. It's all good data. It's all being watched by lot of people at NewTek.

In short....umm....Digi (don't know your name name) - I think you think we disagree a lot on interface, and we don't. If it were a magic wand situation, I might wave it and go with Matt's interface. But there are too many issues - techinical, esthetic, politcal and more. That's not the real world.

Really, what's required is more research. I've been pushing for real market focus groups in the area of UI for a couple of years now. My opinion shouldn't count more than anyone's, and that is why usabilty research is good. But - that's not going to happen before SIGGRAPH, nor do I think it should.

skarab
07-20-2003, 02:32 AM
I'd take the scheme of the lightwave VX project any day, I find all this chrome crap to be quite hideous and the shape of the buttons is also distracting and please no gradients!!

In my opinion you should just buy the vx design and maybe just give it a bit of a work over to make it functional with lw 8's new tools

oliver

badllarma
07-20-2003, 02:33 AM
Well I like the darker one best (the first out the two)

BUT what I would of really liked to see was (and I have posted this on the feature request board some time ago)

Is when you split the screen into say three windows where the tab is for the view EG "Perspective" or "Top" or "Camera " etc.. you could of set one window to show the current tool, light, surface editor details.

So instead of the light properties pannel appearing as usual as a pannel on top of the interface is apperas within a box on the interface thus saving me dragging the bloody thing out of the way every time it is opened!

mastro3d
07-20-2003, 02:34 AM
Interface apart, I believe that the thing more mattered is the deep restructuring of LightWave 3D. The first essential footstep is to melt Modeler and Layout and to align the software of house Newtek to the actual operational standards.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:35 AM
Yes, good suggestion - there's a lot of interesting uses for those windows. There are, I tell ya. And that's all I can say for now.

policarpo
07-20-2003, 02:37 AM
Matt's design won't work for LW 8...it would require a complete rewrite of the core application.

The best we can hope for is a reskinning of the existing UI and workflow optimizations and nothing more.

We have to wait for LW 9 before we can even think of having a new design of LW.

Matt's UI comp is a great place to start the discussion for LW 9, but it is really beyond what is possible in LW 8.

Does this make sense everyone?

cresshead
07-20-2003, 02:40 AM
my thoughts on the early concept art interface look for layout:

1.i like the dark u.i...my favorite interface coloursheme is the combustion dark u.i so this is quite close to it.

2.rounded buttons...don't like the hyper rounded buttons...they kill your area to write the text lables and seem to clutter look of the u.i...maybe a slight roundedness but basically a rectangle would serve us better.

3.the colour change on buttons when they're in use is very welcome and works well for the dark u.i you have posted.
you can quickly see what is switched on...nice touch.

4.the lighter u.i looks more "arty" but tends to distract the eye when you are looking for a tool rather than help you.

5.the dropdown area on the undo button looks most promising!

6.the wireframe label on the current viewport is also a nice touch..but what's the dropdown next to it for???...

7.the general roundedness to buttons..
If you are going down that route..to give the whole U.I in layout a good unified look maybe you might want to round off the tabs for items, objects, lights etc

8.other ideas...
can you for example make the floaters [light properties dislog box]
transparent to some degree in a similar way to how discreet have gave thir users an option for the righthand click menu system they/i use?...i think it's a win 2000 ability so should be "do able"...just a thought...not a must do!

9. the fade of color on the background to the floater has alook that you ran low on spray paint..i'd sooner have a flat color with maybe a small bump to breack it up a little instead.

10...good luck

steve g

policarpo
07-20-2003, 02:42 AM
Originally posted by phrick
I've never liked programs that look too "flashy". IMHO interfaces shall be straightforward and have a plain look. It's the stuff you produce with it that should shine.

I've taken the liberty to do a mockup of my own (only of the lights panel so far). I haven't color coded any buttons yet, but I'm planning to.

http://www.superstereo.nu/temporary/phrick_L8_mockup.gif

You can download the Photoshop original here (http://www.superstereo.nu/temporary/Lw8_GUI.psd) if you want to play with colors and stuff (requires Photoshop 7.0+).



Have a nice day, guys...

This is nice looking Phrick. I just wanted more eyes to see it. ;)

j3st3r
07-20-2003, 02:43 AM
Having a nice UI is not so important than having a nice feature rich application. I like the interface as it is now. But I would be much happier with multiple undo in Layout, local geometry axis in modeler, etc. And some dependancy between splines and patches...

mastro3d
07-20-2003, 02:43 AM
I don't understand English well, therefore I don't succeed in picking the subtleties and the ironies of your language.
Please, speak to me in direct way and possibly with very simple phrases.

Alessandro Melis_
www.mastro3d.it
Sardegna - Italia

sailor
07-20-2003, 02:47 AM
Hi Policarpo :)

"We have to wait for LW 9 before we can even think of having a new design of LW"

Why LW 9? why not LW 8? who decides this? you? i remember reading that we will have to wait until LW6 , 6.5, 7, 7.5 etc for a rewrite...

personally i'm still waiting for that big rewrite and because for some years now i read some LW fan saying hey the next version will be the rewrite version! i dont believe this anymore...personally 29 July is the deadline...after that i wont expect any major changes from NT...i will probably continue to use it for fun and hobbying but i will definetely turn the professional use of it if nothing changes this time...

Nice interface designs BTW ...i dunno which one i prefer but as someone said after sometime i dont even see the interface so i think that it is not such an important imporvement but to be polite i will say it is nice :)

Policarpo no need to flame me huh? it is not personal and maybe you are not waiting for integration for as long as me? ;)

cya


JESTER: i second that !

dzogchen
07-20-2003, 02:47 AM
Originally posted by cresshead

5.the dropdown area on the undo button looks most promising!

6.the wireframe label on the current viewport is also a nice touch..but what's the dropdown next to it for???...



Deuce has indicated and LW8 supports MULTIPLE UNDOS!! I am curious what the dropdown arrow besides wireframe label is for??:confused:

cresshead
07-20-2003, 02:48 AM
hi just to add a small observational feedback i got from students yesterday in their cgi advanced class where i was teaching them character studio in 3ds max....

after a good few hours in character studio i said who'd like a quick look at lightwave and a run round wht it can do etc..seeing as most of them have yet to see it or use it..

one of the most popular comments i was getting was that lightwave [7.5 U.I] looked way more proffessional than that of 3dsmax 5..they commented [not just one but many students] that it has a clean look to it that is easy on the eyes and had "something" about it that said this is a serious app that "can do" cool things...

so..
what ever you do don't lose that coolness that potential users see in lightwave currently.


steve g

badllarma
07-20-2003, 02:52 AM
:D

sounds intresting Stranahan I tell you what if this is done I'd shake the person or persons responcible for it by the hand because that is one feature thats not really super flash or ground breaking and already in other software BUT

Would increase my work flow beyond comprehension, it really would, and boody usful it would / will :D be too.

glad I've paid for my upgrade already anyway:cool:

policarpo
07-20-2003, 02:58 AM
Originally posted by sailor
Hi Policarpo :)

"We have to wait for LW 9 before we can even think of having a new design of LW"

Why LW 9? why not LW 8? who decides this? you? i remember reading that we will have to wait until LW6 , 6.5, 7, 7.5 etc for a rewrite...

personally i'm still waiting for that big rewrite and because for some years now i read some LW fan saying hey the next version will be the rewrite version! i dont believe this anymore...personally 29 July is the deadline...after that i wont expect any major changes from NT...i will probably continue to use it for fun and hobbying but i will definetely turn the professional use of it if nothing changes this time...

Nice interface designs BTW ...i dunno which one i prefer but as someone said after sometime i dont even see the interface so i think that it is not such an important imporvement but to be polite i will say it is nice :)

Policarpo no need to flame me huh? it is not personal and maybe you are not waiting for integration for as long as me? ;)


well sure...i just don't think that 8 will be a rewrite because of all that has happened and the hiring of all the new developers.

i hope 9 is when we see the rewrite happen.

it's just my opinion that i am stating.

i know nothing more than you do.

:)

cresshead
07-20-2003, 03:04 AM
hi
regarding:the light floater u.i pik Originally posted by phrick .

that has a nice clean look to it...not sure about the light colours though...if it were a darkend version...i'd go for that type over the other 2 so far.

steve g

cresshead
07-20-2003, 03:22 AM
hi
okay i don't have phtotplop 7 so i only could re hash it in photoshop 5le...

here's a quick n dirty re colour of the light propeties window posted elsewhere...but toned down to a more darkend scheme

hope i don't offend the origional artist with my quick hack n slash effort!

steve g

colkai
07-20-2003, 03:27 AM
Well,
To answer the original question..
As much as I like the second version, the darker grey has more contrast, which makes it easier for my tired old eyes to read the buttons & text so yup, Dark Grey is the one for moi!

On the other matters, got to say, Deuce & Mr Stranahan, I like what your saying and how your saying it. I agree 100% - As for strong opionions versus the real task of coding - been there -done that ;)

Couldn't afford the DFX deal, but you can bet - I'm Ex-8-ted over what may be.

Regardless of all the posts we've seen, as I stated at the first NWLW UK meeting yesterday (Hi Guys!) - I fully expect '8' to be a real surprise. Call me a neophyte, but I can't see Newtek disappointing me! :D

lord
07-20-2003, 03:39 AM
OK,
If I had to choose, I'd go with the darker version.

Don't like that gradient thing though. In fact personally I don't like the gradient thing at all, especially on the example floating lights panel.

Incidentally looks a hell of a lot like Messiahs buttons and what not. Hmmmm...

cresshead
07-20-2003, 03:55 AM
hi okay just to show what i'm on about when i say the combustion u.i color scheme...which is the screen shot i've attatched below..
i like the subdued colour in *combustion as you spen such a long time in these types of apps concentrating on your work that you really don't want to be disctracted by goudy color shemes in the u.i also if your trying to perfect a render you really don't need some gright pixels from the u.i adding hassel to you trying to "see" what you should do next on your surfacing render etc...

also note the buttons on Combustion are quite clear and simple to read [this screenshot i reduced to 75%]

steve g

Lightwolf
07-20-2003, 04:08 AM
Originally posted by DigitalDeuce
workflow stuff --

like -- what if you right-clicked on a value field -- and saw this popup window?

:] Yes! I've wanted this for ages.
If we now had access to channel modifiers in there as well (adding, editing, removing them...)

Cheers,
Mike

mastro3d
07-20-2003, 04:28 AM
Darkness... Bad!

Psyhke
07-20-2003, 05:36 AM
Maybe instead of the "butter yellow" riki mentioned, something cooler colored like a light blue would fit better with the other LW marketing theme. Like this?...

j3st3r
07-20-2003, 05:48 AM
Sorry, guys...I don`t get it...

Look, a dropdown arrow at undo button? I`m pretty sure undo-redo options...

This undo-redo is crucial. I was told once, that the undo system requires a complete rewrite...This interface looks just a skin to LW, and I`m pretty sure, that it`s the end of LW, if it`s more important than the real issues. Skins are just for fun, but real multiple undos for work. And I do not need workaround, but comfortable solutions for the problems...LW UI looks prof as it is. But look...UI should serve the structure of the program and not hide it...

I do hope, that it has no deal with LW8, because LW won`t spread...

mastro3d
07-20-2003, 05:51 AM
Good!

dzogchen
07-20-2003, 06:15 AM
Originally posted by Psyhke
Maybe instead of the "butter yellow" riki mentioned, something cooler colored like a light blue would fit better with the other LW marketing theme. Like this?...

Yes light blue is much more chic!

colkai
07-20-2003, 06:31 AM
Originally posted by j3st3r
This undo-redo is crucial. I was told once, that the undo system requires a complete rewrite...This interface looks just a skin to LW, and I`m pretty sure, that it`s the end of LW, if it`s more important than the real issues. Skins are just for fun, but real multiple undos for work. And I do not need workaround, but comfortable solutions for the problems...LW UI looks prof as it is. But look...UI should serve the structure of the program and not hide it...

I do hope, that it has no deal with LW8, because LW won`t spread...

Oh Jeez - here we go again - what is it with you people? :mad:

Look - I'll say it slowy so those at the back can understand...

If..you...read...the...posts..by...Deuce...and...L ee.......they...have...all...but...made..it...clea r...that...multiple...undos...DO....exist...in...L W8 Layout!

OK? :rolleyes:

Deuce has said, as has Lee, the interface is a choice of two ideas - they are looking for input - not the age old "sky is falling" act.

Tell ya what - all those getting ready to say they're not gonna get LW8 cos Newtek have "dropped the ball" or (fill in your doomspeak of choice here). Do us a favour, just leave now so we can get on with more important stuff!

To Deuce, Lee, Chuck et al. - Folks eh? What ya gonna do? :confused: Be assured there are those of us who believe, even if we don't shout as loud as the naysayers. :D

Thomas Helzle
07-20-2003, 06:40 AM
I would also like to take the opportunity to vote against rounded buttons. LW 7.5 is very nice - just add an integrated Color-Selector for the buttons instead of changing .CFGs.

If the interface is going to be improved seriously - buy the design from Matt - it is the absolute Killer. (Congrats Matt!)
Combined with selectable colors, it would look fantastic and can be adjusted to please everyone.

Look at Cinema 4D, Maya, Max or XSI - they all waste a lot of space for the UI. Lightwave has the most economic interface I've seen in a 3D App so far.

Regards,

Thomas

battery555
07-20-2003, 06:52 AM
Well let me apologize for being frank, i guess the UI seriously can't cut it. Really the rounded button definitelly is a NO NO.
I love this software, as an owner of lightwave 7.5 so far I expect to see something that can be WOW at for 8. personally, i wish to see a cleaner & more subtle looking UI. is more easy to the eye i think and can't be too wrong in term of design sense.

pardon my bad english!:rolleyes:

sire
07-20-2003, 06:55 AM
Originally posted by j3st3r
Skins are just for fun, but real multiple undos for work.

Right, skins are just for fun - as long as the default look of the program has not changed to something which one absolutely doesn't like.

And this is the case for me with both of the design previews which have been posted at the beginning of this thread. If I had to choose between them two, I'd choose the second, but honestly the current look of 7.5 is waaay better. As people said, it not only looks more serious and professional, it really is: it has been said a few times already that the fancy details distract and waste space. The shown 8.0 GUI ideas simply aren't as functional as the current GUI is. So if the GUI will change in 8.0 it would very nice to have it skinable and together with a complete skin of the 7.5 style.

I also agree to the people who like Matt's design. This should be the way to go in the future.

simonbrewer
07-20-2003, 07:16 AM
Sorry, 'cute' rounded buttons just don't do it for me... The first mock-up just looks like LightWave 4 with the dark grey and bright yellow selected buttons. The light grey mock up just looks......odd

Keep those colours and gradients subtle - don't overdo it or you'll end up with something like the hideous mess of WinXP's default UI.

Personally, I like the nice simple square buttons in 7.5, and I use Meni's colour scheme (available from his website)....

If the UI is going to be changed, give us a option to easily modify the colours used (like in the options panel, not by modifying hub.config), and a selction of skins, so people can choose between rounded buttons (ugh) or the LW 7.5 style... And include Matt's LightWave X skin - that's a great example of subtle interface design :-)

Thanks for showing us your ideas though Newtek - it is appreciated to see what you are doing on LW8!

Simon

Emmanuel
07-20-2003, 07:19 AM
I prefer dark, and I find it important to be able to see instantly the difference between not selected and selected.
The yellow is okay, the blue is not as good.
I prefer combustion to AE, and Pshop to Painter because I am able to
see my picture on dark background, which is for me VERY important to judge colours and contrast.
I prefer the first GUI idea.The bright stuff is for toys like C4D.

j3st3r
07-20-2003, 07:34 AM
Guys...I beg your pardon...I hadn`t read the other thread about LW8 for a while, because it was pissing me up.

So there WILL be multiple undos...WOW!

I think Combustion`s interface is a good example (beside LW`s current UI) of functionality. I would suggest that way.

Darth Mole
07-20-2003, 08:15 AM
I much pefer an understated interface, and perhaps a toggle beteen or dark or light grey would be nice.

I hate the rounded buttons - design for design's sake; they do nothing to assist usability.

cathuria
07-20-2003, 08:18 AM
Pardon me if I try to wade through the clamor here and address the original issue...

re: the first post -- I prefer the lighter version if only because the black lettering is easier to read... but that probably varies with different eyeballs and different monitors. Would it be too hard to give us an option? Select 'dark on light' mode or 'light on dark'?

And I'll have to add my voice against the very round buttons -- yah, they're kinda cool, but they also have that look of: "I'm a cool little round button, cuz round is cool. Ain't I cool? Huh? Huh?":rolleyes:

re: right-click context menu -- love 'em, gimme more.

And so I don't disappoint anybody, I should add a little to the clamor... let's pick up on the calumny against the "additional" menu...
Oh, come on -- if I download a dozen free plug-ins, where else am I going to dump them until I figure out if they're going to be useful or not?

stef
07-20-2003, 08:22 AM
Matt's design so far is superior to anything shown to us. The PS concept is at best shoddy and it is better to leave the current scheme.

Mr. Stranahan wrote:

"Here's a big one against Matt's design - a lot of people at NewTek hate it.

...go with Matt's interface. But there are too many issues - techinical, esthetic, politcal ...."

Why do they hate it? This design (which probably is not possible to implement in LW8 for technical reasons as per Policarpo) - but estheticaly already the best in industry - will land LW multiple awards for best user interface alone (and give NT free advertising and curiosity visits to its site from potential customers). If it is political - drop it!

There is nothing, until unveiling of the real thing, that is better than Matt's design concept. PERIOD. Run a poll on this and it should open the eyes of those who hate it...

The danger is that some smart 'pre-emptive' competitors will approach Matt with the offer that he will have hard time to refuse. Hurry up NewTek! I shall pay extra $100 over the established upgrade price if NT implements Matt's scheme and charges more for it.

Deuce, thanks a lot for trying to be more open with us. Look, Apple is giving official previews to their next OS (Panther), so that practice becomes a norm...

Speaking for myself only I shall stick with you and wait for LW8 longer if I know you guys are putting in there things that we I am craving for (e.g. animation in modeller if you have to keep'em separate).

Proton's latest statement has made me keep the faith. The current design concept and what it entails (C+ programmers on a leave to tinker with PS as sarcastically mentioned before) however makes me shiver...

DigitalDeuce
07-20-2003, 08:26 AM
The current design concept and what it entails (C+ programmers on a leave to tinker with PS as sarcastically mentioned before) however makes me shiver...


Understand this -- the developers didn't do the mockup. It was done by the inhouse designer. You shouldn't shiver.

Cool?

felix_man
07-20-2003, 08:27 AM
I must say like the lighter one better also. But to be honest I really like the one that Hairy Llama posted

http://www.3dpoder.com/foro3dpoder/..._interface2.jpg

http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/

I like the clean feel and also it feels very well though out. Just my 2 cents.

Felix_man

DigitalDeuce
07-20-2003, 08:28 AM
I really want to thank all of your input.

I have to say, that I really feel that we have the smartest users. I appreciate and have read everyone's comments and will (heck, already have) taken the information back to the team.

Thanks everyone.
:D

Chuck
07-20-2003, 08:48 AM
Originally posted by j3st3r
Having a nice UI is not so important than having a nice feature rich application. I like the interface as it is now. But I would be much happier with multiple undo in Layout, local geometry axis in modeler, etc. And some dependancy between splines and patches...

Folks - I'm not directing this just at you j3st3r - assuming that because you are asked for feedback about a particular item, that may mean nothing else is changing about the program, is incorrect. Deciding to freight the thread with your other concerns destroys the focus of the discussion at hand. We're going to be asking for feedback on a number of topics, and if needed I will remove posts that are not on the topic. We have a feature request section of the board that staff review, and any requests you have, please do post them there. For our focused discussions, please stay on topic. This one is about two possibilities for the interface.

I'm only partway through the thread, and if on review it seems necessary, I will remove the off-topic comments from this thread as well.

j3st3r
07-20-2003, 08:56 AM
I beg your pardon again. The only reason I had, that it looked like as an attempt to distract our attention about the features of the new LW.

I`m sorry.

Zarathustra
07-20-2003, 08:58 AM
Personally, I don't care if the look of the interface changes, as long as there remains a button named "sphere" and not a cute little shaded ball.

I think the work should be the pretty thing, not the interface. That's why I like AE.

I use 2 monitors, so it would be nice if ALL the panels remember where I like them to be. The big ones do (all the Editors) but, for example, the individual surface channels ALWAYS open dead center over Layout. After I move one, the rest learn to open there but if I quit and reopen Layout BANG it's dead center again.

Stupid and trivial, I know, but it's a perpetual annoyance.

Once again, cosmetic interface change = unimportant. New features and functionality changes = top priority.

sailor
07-20-2003, 09:43 AM
hello,

somebody talked about multiple undos in Layout? where? :D

CB_3D
07-20-2003, 09:47 AM
I have to admit that i am with Matts design,too.

Not sure if this is OT, since it doesnīt answer the question directly, but just as i said on CG Talk:
What we have been shown so far should in all its variations, be it color, be it form, be completely user configurable through one nice tidy section in the preferences panel.

I donīt see why the colorshemes and button form couldnīt be integrated as one more option?! While some of the ideas shown in the VX designs certainly would require true re-pogramming, the visual style would not.

It IS exciting to see a real Undo hinted at, though.:D

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 09:50 AM
There's a new thread with a feature overview for LW8 layout.

papou
07-20-2003, 09:57 AM
hi,
Thank you for feedback NT,

i'd like to post my feeling about the interface, and somes request... maybe some of them are not only a interface request...

I don't care about rounded or not. Maybe the better is to let users to have skin choice..

Same for color. i prefer dark style, like combustion with orange highlight (not unsaturate yellow). Blue is nice too but little unreadable (maybe more saturate will be fine, for me)

agree with Zarathustra, when i start a new job, i like to align all my panels, but when i'm working on my dual screens, i have to move panels because the panel size are different then all become chaotic. a grid snaping for all panels will be nice (like aura2).

another thing, it will be nice to close the modeler surface editor when we switch to layout, and reverse too. Or name it "Modeler" and "Layout" surface Editor...

i'd like to access display (wireframe, shade, texture view) with keyboard shortcut.

i hope we can scale the timeline in the new scene editor.

another small thing, Can we have the load image into Backdrop Image World? hehe.

i'd love to see a little transparent popup with highlight border (like the middle mouse button item selection in layout) for all CTRL+SHIFT panels...

when items are locked in the scene editor, it will be great to hide them from the curent item popup...

in modeler, when you open a bottom popup, u have to scroll down to select your tool/action. Isn't it better if the popup will open from the bottom...(maybe i must screengrab, better than my poor english...)

sometimes in the numeric panel, we must resize to see all function....Can w have a sizer at the bottom right corner when the panel is not totally open?

one more about "additional", no prob with it because i can put additional plug/tool where i want in the interface...BUT the "search command list" in the "Configure Menus" are really strange, it don't seems to work well.

Thank you.
ciao-

Zithen
07-20-2003, 09:58 AM
I don't understand why people would want to go with a combustion/DFX+ style interface. LW is not a compositing application. Why mimic an app that has a completely different purpose? I'm sorry, but that seems like sheep mentality verses a well thought out, intelligent and innovative decision. Why can't LW be unique and come into its own and exemplify what is best for ITS purpose?

I think the darker UI for these programs works best because their compositing applications! In that instance, manipulating images in a darker UI gives contrast between the images and the UI, which would assist. This makes sense. I don't "hate" the darker UI for LW, but I would much rather enjoy the feel of a UI that is brighter and lighter in tone for modeling and animation. To give you a clear view of the scene within the UI.
Anyone that "hates" the LWVX design scares me. What's to hate, exactly? It may not be the perfect or best option for LW, but one should certainly have the capacity to appreciate the good things that it offers...the clean look, etc.

For me, I think it's unfortunate that anyone would want the LW UI to look like another program, especially without first doing some thorough research as to WHY they made it that way in the first place. My guess is that the makers of combustion/DFX spent much time to do the research (and through many revisions) as to what would make the best UI for COMPOSITING!

LW already had the rounded buttons and dark UI before. It's changed and evolved for a reason. Why is it going backward when it should be moving forward?

Also, I didn't upgrade to 7 either, until 7.5. But it was because there were no compelling reasons to spend the money to get the upgrade. I am baffled why anyone would not upgrade because of whatever experience they had with the previous upgrade, aside from bad customer support. Otherwise it makes no sense. LW7 was not a compelling upgrade, IMO. I saw most of the features as being plug-ins, and didn't feel those features were worth learning new stuff and paying for it. I wonder who's managing Newtek's market research? Is this a researching company that knows what they're doing and is asking the right questions???

Aside, it's been nearly two years since the major revision. I really hope for the best for LW8 and hope that it blows away my expectations. If there ever were a time where Newtek needed to blow people away, it would be this year. If it does not, I'm afraid it may be a little too late to have a radical new change next year.

jevinstudios
07-20-2003, 10:01 AM
The conceptual preview was an interesting idea, but I'd rather see a hardcore feature list on what to expect, instead of a snazzy UI pre-viz. LW's interface is not the priority that needs fixing, IMHO. There are MANY features lacking in LW that need desperate attention, and the separation of Modeler and Layout is becoming a major hinderance in the competition of the software with other apps (not in the case for me, though, because I've begun using LW only for modeling anyway, so I'm O.K. with that -- my models are imported into Maya for texturing, animation and rendering.....).

To date, I've not seen ANY glimpse whatsoever into the evolution of LW 8's feature list, so am frankly not interested in upgrading my product. Until I see a good reason to lay down the $$, a new interface just doesn't do it.....

Take Maya's latest upgrade for intance: the integration of a full version of mental ray, plus hardcore improvements in functionality and production. The UI remained unchanged. THIS is what an upgrade is meant to be.

I don't know about the majority, but I find this thread to be only fluff, with no substance. Disappointing.

RobinWood
07-20-2003, 10:19 AM
Of the two, I prefer the current design. :D

I find it easier to read than either of these. Probabaly because there's no gradient interferring with readability.

I agree with those who dislike the rounded buttons and gradients. Yes, I suppose they are "cool," but they also interfere with readability, and that's what's important.

I'm glad that it's still text, though.

If you do go with the darker interface, I like the idea of having the buttons change to a brighter color when they are in use. (The current change to dark wouldn't be very visible.) Would it be difficult to have the user choose the highlight color? I far prefer the blue to the yellow, if it's not. But it really would be better to give us a choice.

For those who are complaining about the current menu layout; if you don't like it, change it! It's not difficult to do. Which is one of the many things I love about Lightwave.

Alan Daniels
07-20-2003, 10:29 AM
Originally posted by stef
...as well as the Surface Editor solution proposed by the LWavewer from Greece...

Could you post a link to this surface editor idea? The idea sounds intriguing, but searching for this on Google, and on the forums here, didn't show anything.

Lamont
07-20-2003, 10:34 AM
Looks cool. I am a fan of keeping the overlaying structure/layout the same. I am sure the underlaying menus and tabs will provide a better workflow.

Even if the layout of the menus were completely re-done, I don't care, I am sure I will not have to scrap my workflow, but apend it because the changed will be intuitive.

The dark layout is good. Maybe there is a more simple way of changing colors than to muggle around with the *.cfg files?

Whit
07-20-2003, 10:35 AM
These are both very nice looking.

<ignoring advice about how I should answer>

Rounded buttons, scribed lines between labels and command key eqivalents, and dimensional shadows all take up more space. This forces the designer to give the button bar more width (which is precious) or to do things to reduce the space the text uses--things like smaller text or tighter kerning (both of which make the text a little harder to read). It looks like the kerning has been tightened in these versions.

I favor little change in the look that isn't forced by changes in function.

</ignoring advice about how I should answer>

Just my 2 cents worth.

--Whit

HowardM
07-20-2003, 10:37 AM
I hate them both, know why? because they look like LW7 with round buttons....damnit, who cares about the interface, how about better workflow and FULLY INTEGRATED state of the art features like other packages?!....

how about envelopes for every single variable?
how about gradients, and I mean every single type of gradient for everything?! (not one or two types here another 2 or 3 here...all the same list for every dropdown!)
how about MD, HV, PFX all working together seamlessly?!
how about all 3rd party pluginz using the same interface design, drop downs, etc....
MD doesnt even allow you to resize the stinking window!?
even simple things like that make you wonder who the hell is designing this crap!?

its a real bummer to see 8 is going to be 7.5z
:(
i was really hoping that NT would listen to the users, give us what we want...instead you play around with childish ploys like Protons little tease and now this lame preview of a photoshopped screen shot....whos marketing ideas are these?! does NT really think it can survive like this?

its funny, how you copied XSI and made round buttons...maybe we should just buy XSI considering its coherent and intuitive!?

not looking forward to LWs future....
:(

very upset...and its my bday damnit!

cgolchert
07-20-2003, 10:44 AM
Originally posted by Stranahan
I have said that there's nothing keeping more radical interface changes from happening a few months down the road, but they aren't going to happen short term. I can see where this might be seen as shooting something down, but it's not. Let me explain.

How are radical design changes going to harm the user when the title bar says Lightwave 8, but be OK when it says Lightwave 8.1 though Lightwave 9? Or has the reason why changes are happening shifted between time frames vs. user difficulty?

policarpo
07-20-2003, 10:45 AM
wow.

you might want to check what was in your wheaties this morning there buddy.

it can't be good for you.

happy bday anyhow!

get off the computer and go do something fun and distracting!

you only need creativity to be a successful artist.:D

Lamont
07-20-2003, 10:45 AM
Originally posted by HowardM
I hate them both, know why? because they look like LW7 with round buttons....damnit, who cares about the interface, how about better workflow and FULLY INTEGRATED state of the art features like other packages?!.... Bah, this thread is side-tracked.. I'm outta here till otherwise.

cgolchert
07-20-2003, 10:47 AM
Originally posted by m_luscombe

Part of any design is managing "negative" space. An interface without enough of it looks cluttered. When you add the bevels to everything, you do one of two things:

1) Space everything apart, so less can be on the screen at the same time. (The OSX way. I'm a mac user.)

Or

2) You fill the negative space we once had (the space between the buttons) with more detail. More clutter. Like bevel shading.

This is one reason why I never understod why so many people rave about Matt's design. I DO see a lot of good ideas but no one else seems to notice that most of the screen is taken up by empty button space, empty menu space and a relativly small 3d view. It is a good start but has anyone though of functionality or just button placement on it. Last time I looked there was stuff that belonged together and in the image it was spread out like a plane crash.

jevinstudios
07-20-2003, 10:48 AM
Happy BDay, Howard!

stef
07-20-2003, 10:53 AM
I was doing in fact an almost hour-long search (Sunday morning) to find that link, going also through old bulletin and such. I was looking for it since wanted to thank Deuce for his final note, as well as thank both of those fine gentlemen (Matt and ???) for their time, thought and effort spent on trying to help to improve LW and for opening my eyes to what LW could/can/will (???) do. Perhaps NT is incorporating those Surface Editor ideas and it was yanked off the internet. Perhaps someone else has it saved... Sorry, Alan, that cannot help.

cgolchert
07-20-2003, 10:58 AM
That surface editor was horrible for funtionality. They took every button they could think of and tacked it onto ONE panel. It filled the entire screen. There was way too much crap to be tripping over.

The current surface editor in 7.5 could use some things shifted from tab to tab but not all options on one panel.

colkai
07-20-2003, 11:03 AM
Originally posted by HowardM
I hate them both, know why? because they look like LW7 with round buttons....damnit, who cares about the interface, how about better workflow and FULLY INTEGRATED state of the art features like other packages?!....
MD doesnt even allow you to resize the stinking window!?
even simple things like that make you wonder who the hell is designing this crap!?

its a real bummer to see 8 is going to be 7.5z
:(
i was really hoping that NT would listen to the users, give us what we want...instead you play around with childish ploys like Protons little tease and now this lame preview of a photoshopped screen shot....whos marketing ideas are these?! does NT really think it can survive like this?

its funny, how you copied XSI and made round buttons...maybe we should just buy XSI considering its coherent and intuitive!?

not looking forward to LWs future....
:(


Buy XSI - Please!! -


Give us all an early birthday present - Chuck - is this thing on? Any chance of turning it off?? ;)

HowardM
07-20-2003, 11:03 AM
thanks for the bday greets!

:banghead:
Let the user design the colors and the buttons!!!!!!!!!!
I cannot believe how much time you all have spent talking about the buttons!!!!!!!!!!
LETS MAKE A BETTER WORKING LW!
:(

its funny, ya know, LW being made (or should be) by artists...
you think they could of figured out by now that it would be best to allow us to make our own choice, so that the user could make round, square, clear or whatever they think looks good, buttons....users could share skins....there could be a SkinDesigner2000 that would easily allow you to mix and match buttons, colors, whatever....how many years has the brushed metal been argued about?!
but see,....already you have sucked me in, and I have wasted TOO MUCH TIME thinking and discussing the look...

the point is, red, white, bluw, icons, words, alien language, it doesnt matter what it looks like if LW falls behind, because the programmers didnt worry about the state of the art being displayed at Siggraph and how they can utilize it...they worried about buttons...

LETS WORK TOGETHER TO MAKE A FASTER, BETTER LW!

...ungh, Im outta here...gonna go enjoy the hell outta my bday!
whos buying shots!?
:)

colkai
07-20-2003, 11:06 AM
...ungh, Im outta here...gonna go enjoy the hell outta my bday! whos buying shots!?


Hey- huntin' seasons open! - oh - wrong kind of shot..

CIM
07-20-2003, 11:17 AM
Originally posted by DigitalDeuce
workflow stuff --

like -- what if you right-clicked on a value field -- and saw this popup window?

Things like this really assist in the workflow.



http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/rightclick.gif

That's a good start. It's good to see Newtek looking at Maya and XSI for improvements.

StevenDS
07-20-2003, 11:48 AM
I like the darker gray. Easier to make color judgments.

Rounded buttons are distracting. No sir I don't like'em.

I can take or leave the interface gradient.

Could use speedier screen redraws/refreshing.

-Steven
"Can't wait for Eight!"
:D

chewey
07-20-2003, 12:10 PM
I like the silver interface with the black text.

milkman
07-20-2003, 12:48 PM
HowardM, you do not understand the purpose of this thread, and you are only serving to bring it in to the ground.

Your presence in this thread is not appreciated.

problemchild
07-20-2003, 12:50 PM
Thanks forn throwing this out to the masses for comment.

I like the rounded buttons.
I like the darker, higher contrast look, though that somewhat acheivable now.
I like the passing resemblance to Fusion buttons.

I like that Newtek is cautious abouit radical changes to the interface and ackowledges that major changes need to give the user options to reconfig or revert to early look/flow.

kenneth
07-20-2003, 12:55 PM
Three points:

1. The change from 5 to 6 lost some people who expected things to never change, seriously old school folks who just wanted a VW Beetle with newer parts instead of the new classic we have today. Since LW was much like the way it had been for 10 years, it was in _dire_ need of some changes. Still is.

2. "Darker gray" is not better for "color sensitive work". I'm not sure where you got that idea. 50% gray is best for color work, as the levels affect the overall tonality of the display less. A darker cast to the whole display will cause your eyes to adjust in very different ways.

3. Making buttons more prominent does not make a new interface. It's difficult to look at. I understand that it's a mock-up, but this is obviously the direction you're headed. I suggest a "classic look" option somewhere.

arcticwolfsong
07-20-2003, 01:01 PM
There's a difference between making something better, and making somethig different.

I think it would be wisest to make it so user-definable "skins" are graftable onto the interface, shipping whatever favorite new looks NewTek comes up with, along with the current, 7.x look.

I, myself, am not fond of either of the proposed looks that head this forum. They look too much like something/someone trying too hard to be different/neat/etc.

The biggest difficulty in the proposed interfaces is that the buttons themselvs are competing visually with the information they represent. Areas of high-contrast capture the eye's focus, and proposed images have button edges with much higher contrast than the text contained within.

When I'm blazing away on a Scene, I don't want to have to break my pattern of Creative Thought. Clear, concise orgainzation based on PATTERNING, colors and the like, are what this artist needs to INSTINCTIVELY hit the control I need, (without having to weed-through visually over-stimulating stimulus).

I found the "LW-X" concept from an earily post to be more pleasing.

Timothy

Doug Nicola
07-20-2003, 01:23 PM
Well it looks like the voting so far is about 50-1 against the rounded buttons look.

The rounded, drop-shadow buttons are ugly old clunky Windows 3.1, LW 4 junk. I hate them, and I can't see how anyone at NT would think "hey we should look more like Fusion, that will really make our users happy." It makes no sense. I love DFX+, but I love it because it is what it is, not because it looks more like XYZ app. That is the same reason I love LW. It means nothing to me that these apps should look like each other. Good grief, that's what Office 2000 is for, not creative apps!!!!

The rounded buttons clash clash clash.

And forget the idea that the UI design just somehow "fades" with time... It's actually the opposite. When I open LW, the LOOK of the UI is what immediately makes me feel "ahhh, here's LightWave."

This design mockup is a big step backward for NT, and I'm kind of shocked it would be taken seriously there.

I for one have seen almost nothing but praise for Matt's design here on these boards. Of course something like that could be a future version, but I am again shocked that there seems to be some political thing going on at NT where people "hate" his design. Do these people care what so many folks have posted positively about Matt's design? Or are thay offended that someone not "in-house" could come up with something so good (and just plain better)? Grow up, get out of your heads, and see the obvious! LW's current disconnected system of pop-ups is very clunky. I can make it serve me with customization, but that's just a personal fix.

paul k.
07-20-2003, 01:25 PM
I agree with Howard M somewhat, Look the interface should be as invisible as possible. As well as being fully customizable. I also agree that we should have much more concern about how well the new features will be implemented.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 01:31 PM
Doug - I agree with some of your points, but even a quick look at the last few posts would show that your math is off. It's not 50 to 1 for or against anything.

The people who think Matt's interface is the obvious only choice are just being louder and more shrill. That's too bad, because it probably won't help Matt's interface gain adherents - it's a design, not a religion. Like Karl Marx said, "I hate Marxists."

There are at least half dozen posts that back any position you care to name, but the positive ones are shorter and more polite.

Still - we're listening to all suggestions, rude or polite, emotional or rational, informed or confused. It's all good data.

I'm not telling anyone how to post. But let me suggest that an atmosphere without posturing or hype would be better. And let me also suggest that everyone wait and watch to see how things unfold. I already have ideas based on the feedback, but there are no decisions that are going to happen on a Sunday.

KillMe
07-20-2003, 01:35 PM
people do like to get worked up over not a whole lot - these are jsut concepts not the finished product

newtek jsut bouncing afew ideas off us to improve the fianl product

and i think its nice that newtek is willing to let us see it and give our comments before it ships and were are stuck with what we got

anyway as for them i gonna go with the consensus and say that i like the dark colour scheme, but i would lose the high contrast beveled buttons. Make it a dark version of the exisiting interface.

skinning options would be nice so we can go back to a 7.5 look if we want but easily customisable since well i messed the the default colour settings of lw as i'm sure alot of people hve and i find my colour scheme much easier on the eyes

Nightwalker
07-20-2003, 01:52 PM
I assume that Newtek is just trying to make a decision on Lw's default interface, isn-it? The colors are configurable today, they wouldn't remove that feature....
If its for the default or oficial look I would just go for something close to 7.* colors.... And loose those round beveled buttons...

Neil_Campbell
07-20-2003, 01:53 PM
Personally I'm pretty happy with the current UI. It's clean, simple, easy to navigate, and doesn't really make itself overly visible - exactly what an interface should do really, simply provide access to functionality.

With respect to the proposed UI styles, I really don't like the rounded buttons, the gradients or the semi-embossed style - too busy by far.

And I can't see why LW should have an interface that aims to look anything like DFX in terms of style. Last time I looked LW was a professional app in its own right, and should have its own look and feel. I use Photoshop with LW all the time, but don't see the point of trying the make the LW interface look like Photoshop.

Stick with the clean interface you have now, and only change it where the new workflow improvements demand it. There are more significant things to be addressing IMO, but that's for another thread.

Doug Nicola
07-20-2003, 01:54 PM
Okay, I'll chill a bit, and apologize for my hype, but I got just a tad freaked when I saw that part about NT wanting LW to look more like Fusion. There is something seriously wrong with that thinking, IMO, that made me wonder where NT's priorities really are heading.

Think about this. To make an animation I am currently working on, I've used LW, DFX+, Paint Shop Pro, WaveLab, VirtualDub, and Aura 1.0. Do these apps look anything like each other, other than they all have buttons and menus? Not a bit. It would mean absolutely nothing to me if they did. Why change the great way the interface is evolving, to suddenly jump over to a look like Fusion? Unless somehow Fusion is going to be directly integrated into LW or NT has been bought by eyeon? I don't see how time or energy is well served by this kind of focus.

But, Lee, if you look back at this thread and count them up, you'd see the vote is pretty strong against those buttons!

Nightwalker
07-20-2003, 02:04 PM
One other thing, in Maya i use a litle script binded to a key that alows me to hide all the interface and have the viewport fulscreen, also for instance wen i open the atribute editor it docks in the side, so i can work most of the time in fullscreen. I would like something similar especialy in modeler.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:06 PM
Doug,

I'm actually thinking of doing an actual count....but uggh...man....that won't be fun, ya know? Tedious work.

Here's what I think on a gut feeling level and Deuce said this already - based on the feedback, we'll probably back on the rounding. Maybe not all the way, but maybe. It seems like a lot of people like the darker look fine, but it's not a slam dunk. If there's an easy way to do options for people, I would expect we'll do that - if not in LW8.0, sometime in the future. None of this is anything but a shoot-from-the-hip reaction - no promises, but like I said - we are listening.

The 'look like DFX+' thing - let me explain. That seems to be a nice modern look, and a lot of us Fusion users like it a lot. Combustion is similar, too. Do they have to look similar? No, of course not - it was a jumping off point for a color scheme and some font ideas. Nothing much more. I will say, though, from a marketing / sales perspective it's good, and NewTek and eyeon has a nice relationship.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:08 PM
Nightwalker - you already have this ability. Hit 'd', and go to the Interface tab. Turn on 'Hide Toolbar'

Now, use keyboard shortcuts or CTRL-SHIFT + RM / MM / LM to access tools.

BoulYaBase
07-20-2003, 02:13 PM
Hey Deuce,

Nice work. I like the dark version. Easier on the eyes.

I'd love to see a narrow or condensed font for buttons/labels (or at least an option for it). The fonts always seem so wide that it's tough to get enough characters onto a single button. Seems like I'm often reducing plug-in names to read like vanity license plates.

It might just be the mockup, but the interface in the provided screenshot doesn't offer enough room for multiple characters -- "^F3" next to Surface Editor, for example. This doesn't matter for regular (i.e. lower case) alphanumerics, of SHIFTed alphanumerics (i.e. capital letters and symbols above the number keys) -- but seems like it'd be tricky for CTRL characters and function keys.

Also it might be cool if you could right click on that 'shortcut key' area next to each command and select 'Assign New Shortcut'. That'd make it much easier to refine key mappings and develop better workflow.

-- Mike Morrison

stef
07-20-2003, 02:22 PM
Quote from post by Mr. Stranahan:

"The people who think Matt's interface is the obvious only choice are just being louder and more shrill. That's too bad, because it probably won't help Matt's interface gain adherents - it's a design, not a religion."

Exactly - it is a design and not POLITICS - as, acording to the above, those who supported him are louder and shrill (read "a lowly LW proletariat who does not accept our omniscient dictatorship"), so heck with Matt's design.

Nota bene: People simply CARE for LW (an incredible achievement by NT) and hope that only the best solutions will be implemented in it and are trying to tell this to NT the best way they can.

To Doug Nicola:

"Or are thay offended that someone not "in-house" could come up with something so good (and just plain better)?"

Since in the past NT acquired plug-ins from third parties it is within its business model (and not a "shame" or "politically incorrent" thing) to negotiate with someone (Matt Gorner) who has so far "won the contest" for overall best GUI for a future version of LW (barring a better design being in fact already implemented beyond our knowledge and a lame PS teaser presented to us).

If however the decision to equip LW8.x with the best posible toolsets is based on politics of finding adherents within NT to win them to a particular wish/concept then this is not NT that I know - the best company around that in their business model is driven by total customer satisfaction (I have nothing but praise for their TS) and can boast one of the most faithful and professionally sophisticated customer base in the world. It will be a great pity if that base is alientated by revelations of "politics" behind the scene (Lxology example was bad enough, and the quote above makes me "worried" that his design is not taken for what it is, but how we respond to it) and worse, if "vox populi" does not count.

I, for one, am voting (not requesting out of politness) for Matt design to be included in future editions of LW (unless again a better scheme is offered), since I want NT to have the best product around. I am truly wishing them the best success with their LW software, which is painful to see being overtaken by competition.

Also putting a roadmap of planned modifications (and not keeping it a secret up to this post) is the honest and responsible way for NT to take, if they care about continued customer support and loyalty, before people wil start looking around. LW is sorely lagging behind other apps and yet we stay with it because we have trust in NT that this can be rectified and especially if we know that requested changes are considered and are worked on to be implemented.

If however we need to make a huge effort "to gain adherents" withing NT for our legitimate wishes - it is better not to bother, not to give any feedback and wait and see what NT can offer us. We will simply take it from there.

Zithen
07-20-2003, 02:24 PM
It seems that Newtek is very sensitive about user feedback and very particular on what THEY want. It seems Newtek only wanted to know which of the two we liked best. If that's the case then why not set up a simple poll as well?

Problem I see is that I don't think this attitude furthers LW. If you open something for feedback, then you shouldn't say we only want "this" kind of feedback or response. How will that help you? ALL feedback reflects how people are feeling here. Everyone is different and expresses things in different ways. But Newtek should have the maturity to appreciate and encourage this, not stifle it, for it helps you see what your users as a whole really want from your product.

I understand that there is finite time to set up the UI and that these two choices are in debate. What I think is frustrating people, including me, is that UI discussion has been talked about at great length on message boards where users have actually taken the time to design UIs themselves for the community and product. Then we look at these two options and are a bit disappointed at the "seeming" lack of attention taken to the UI, because we see something such as LightwaveVX, where someone went all out and designed something, someone who doesn't even work for Newtek, did it on his own free time and...with all do respect, came up with a design that's much more appealing than the two choices Newtek presented us. LWVX looks like someone put a lot of time, thought and effort into it. That's what we want to see from Newtek. I'm not saying LightwaveVX is the design LW should be. But it's the attention to quality, innovation and lots of thought that is reflective in the product.

If Newtek hates Matt's designs, yet many users think it has appeal, then maybe Newtek should stop, listen, understand the why and act on it, regardless of what they may think. Because maybe what they think is right may not be what's best for the whole.

It's not supposed to be pleasant when you work long hours and someone gives you a harsh critique of what you've done. But if you dismiss it because it doesn't feel good, then you're actually hurting yourself even more.

Doug Nicola
07-20-2003, 02:24 PM
Okey doke! I trust you guys to do what you think is best! Just PLEASE tone down (or kill) the drop shadow? It really grates on me! It's all just my not so humble two cents.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:32 PM
Zith,

Do you feel as though I'm stifling your feeback?

Stef,

I never some NewTek hates Matt's design. I said it's not a slam dunk - some people inside NewTek don't like it, and neither do some people outside NewTek. It's not a simple decision

Both of you,

Please realize that not everyone feels the way you do. That doesn't mean you aren't being heard. You are. So is everyone. We have all heard your points, but don't expect a post where you 'win'. This isn't about any position winning, it's about gathering data and giving users data.

Zithen
07-20-2003, 02:37 PM
The 'look like DFX+' thing - let me explain. That seems to be a nice modern look, and a lot of us Fusion users like it a lot. Combustion is similar, too. Do they have to look similar? No, of course not - it was a jumping off point for a color scheme and some font ideas. Nothing much more. I will say, though, from a marketing / sales perspective it's good, and NewTek and eyeon has a nice relationship.

I think this is a shame. DFX+ should want to imitate US! LW should be the leader and the innovator! Not the follower.
If Newtek should follow anyone, it should be its own customers.
You cannot think outside the box when you're living inside it.

Afalk
07-20-2003, 02:38 PM
Just dropping in my .02

I really like the current, un-flashy, non-beveled, non XP or Aqua style interface. Personally, those style interfaces are simply a distraction. I prefer the darker colors (easier for me to work with), and while I think Matt's UI is pretty, I still think Id prefer the current version.

What it all boils down to though, is that from V5 to now, LW has just gotten better and better. I have faith that all of you at NT will continue this approach, so best of luck! I'll keep my eyes peeled for any further glimpses here on the boards.

Tony

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:40 PM
Seriously - does anyone here want to volunteer to do a count of 'votes' - only counting each poster's vote once, not the total number of posts?

Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

Emmanuel
07-20-2003, 02:42 PM
(beeing loud and shrill:)

I DONT LIKE MATT's DESIGN.
For me its to...clinical, too bright and it seems a lot of space is wasted for not so obvious "advantages".
My opinion, if its of any value...

Zithen
07-20-2003, 02:47 PM
Do you feel as though I'm stifling your feeback?
I feel you are not encouraging a wide range of feedback. I sense that you want specific feedback that will assist with the direction that Newtek has already chosen.

I know everyone doesn't think like me. And I'd be horrified if everyone did. The point is to get the best product for the collective. I don't want to win. I just want to use the best product I put my money into. I've waited nearly two years for something fantastic and I've had high hopes. I don't want to see a user who designs a UI in their free time come up with what I think is more unique and thoughtful than what Newtek delivers. And I would rather see Newtek come up with something that's "better" and more innovative than the compitition, rather than come up with something that imitates another app.

stone
07-20-2003, 02:47 PM
was just about to start counting, when i thought why to bother - lw7 looks so much better, so just stick with that, add a few more options for customizing the ui and this discussion would be over ;)

/stone

Psyhke
07-20-2003, 02:55 PM
Some people are saying the rounded buttons are clunky. Hmm, well, maybe it's just the prominent beveling. I always thought the current hard sqares everywhere looked sort of clunky, somehow.

I vote for some sort of subtle rounding of edges everywhere in the app. :cool:

Nightwalker
07-20-2003, 02:57 PM
"Nightwalker - you already have this ability. Hit 'd', and go to the Interface tab. Turn on 'Hide Toolbar'

Now, use keyboard shortcuts or CTRL-SHIFT + RM / MM / LM to access tools."

Thanks for the tip, but is it possible maybe via Lscript to bind a key to show/hide the toolbar, so you dont have to go to the interface tab every time?

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:58 PM
Zith,

I'm sorry you feel that way, and I hope I haven't said anything to make you think that way. This thread, clearly, has a wide range of feedback. That means there are a variety of different opinion - we have that, and I have said repeatedly - thanks, we are listening. Just to be 100% clear - Thanks for all the feedback. We are listening.

What I do worry about, however, is people developing a rooting interest and then being over-dramatic when they don't get their way. And I don't want a few users to hijack the debate.

This thread wasn't started to open the UI to any and all feedback. It was started to show users what LW8 was going to look like, more or less. People like Policarpo have done a great job of explaining why.

I've heard you, Zith. Some of your points are valid, and some are overbroad. I took some pains to explain the '2 year' deal. If you expect 2 years of change in LW8, you're not going to get them. That is just reality. But LW8 is still a great upgrade, especially for the price.

I am not trying to stifle anyone. We've all heard you. Now, why not wait and see what happens, without prejudging?

stef
07-20-2003, 02:58 PM
Dear Lee,

Thank you very much for your kind response. My post is by no means predicated on 'winning' it. I will vote (with my dollars of course) for the best solution which I will judge as suiting me. I am more, much more, concerned what will be under the hood than the GUI. It is secondary to me, since I need to have a job done no matter what graphical enviroment I am in. I simply expressed my "likes" and "dislikes" based on aesthetic values and overall potential matt's design and concept offers. I understand that Americans (those born here) have different aesthetic appreciation (or general lack of itjavascript:smilie(':p')) than e.g. Europeans or South Americans (comp. architecture and shoddiness of US cities) so it is possible we shall have a wide range of discourse (even though in reality there is only few votes on this thread against Matt's proposal). I trust NT will make the best decision, but if there is any need - then run the poll. We can indicate our likes and dislikes in a statistically impartial way. I also understand many of you at NT are working real hard now, befoire Siggraph and may be tired of listening to us. We want to assist you from the best we can and want nothing more for you than to be successfull with LW. It and you deserve it!
Cheers to everyone and happy lightwaving...

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 02:59 PM
NightWalker,

Keyboard shortcut is Alt-F2

Or make your own by hitting Alt- F9 and redirecting it.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 03:01 PM
Thanks stef,

Nice response - your under the hood questions are, of course, valid. That's why I posted the overview of features, and you'll see specifics this week.

Zithen
07-20-2003, 03:02 PM
Bottom line...

I like the silver look. :) LW has always leaned toward the light grey look. A lighter tone facilitates my creative flows.

The dark grey just changes LW's whole character and I don't think imitation is cool. While animating, the dark colors will not make for a bright day for me. Let DFX be DFX, and let LW come into its own.

I don't think Matt's design should be the UI for LW. But I do think the overall sleek, well crafted look is a direction I'd like to see LW go. The design has some good things in it that should be taken seriously, not hated.

And maybe there should be a poll where users could vote, that way you can clearly see which of the two people want.

Didn't mean to offend or hurt anyone's feelings with regard to my posts. It's just my opinion, nothing more or less. I really just want the best LW on the planet. The more people are satisfied, the better LW will be.

dennis
07-20-2003, 03:05 PM
Thanks Deuce for giving us an opportunity to provide feedback on this.

I prefer 7.5's current interface to either of the ones posted by Deuce; it's not changed much, and the changes don't really do anything to improve upon the current interface, other than the drop-down window, which to me is more workflow oriented - cool.

It seems to me like the motivation for this revision is for the Marketing Dept. to be able to add a bulletpoint on the box: New Improved Interface! I'm kind of put off by this, The main thing that bugs me about LW is alot of the functionality seems half-baked, probably so there could be "xxx" new features!

Perhaps just make an improvement to how you modify the current interfaces colors for 8.0, that seems to be what alot of people are commenting on anyway.

Since it sounds like it's too late in the game to make significant UI (Workflow) related changes, I would rather see 8.0's interface stay the same, and devote your energy into making a great interface for the next version.

For this I think Matt's approach would be a great starting point; all of the text could be darker, and it looks to me like there is a faint drop-shadow under all the text, I would remove this since it makes the text harder to read. Space optimization could be looked at.

I think the time for dockable windows is here; Lightwave is way too window happy, and most of them seem to me like they could be consolidated. Currently LW wastes alot of screen real estate (IMHO).

If spreadsheet didn't function so much like a plug-in (performance wise), it seems like it could be merged with the scene editor, and lose one of the windows I currently shuffle around my monitors, the same with Surface and Image Editor. If windows were dockable, I'd probably have the graph editor docked with the scene editor/spreadsheet, since I typically like them pretty large on a second monitor. I'd like to see Modeler and Layout integrated - Duck.

Matt's design accomodates this sort of functionality, and I think is more flexible; add the ability to change colors and configure menus like you can currently, and I think this would be the best approach.

I know that Deuce stated "These are also just representative of the "look" -- nothing representative of workflow is shown", but to me, interface design and workflow are directly related, you can't judge one without the other.

Nightwalker
07-20-2003, 03:12 PM
Thanks Stranahan :cool:

Btw, I think the round buttons might be acceptable if the beveling was smaler. As for colours I like the dark for night and a brightest vertion for the day, so an easy way to load diferent setups would be very nice. I just dont like the contratst in the first one, that yelow is just too bright and distracting.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 03:14 PM
Dennis,

Let me be clear - there will be no 'new improved interface' bullet point related to round buttons or new colors. We're not stupid....well, not THAT stupid.

There will be stuff about improved workflow - but of course, people are going to disagree about that, too.

But - a new look, even slightly, gives people a visual clue that it's a new version. It's a common tool, and one that we're going to use to help make LW8 succesful.

omeone
07-20-2003, 03:48 PM
1 more vote for better contrast GUI & right-click menu and 1 more vote against rounded buttons too :)

Re: UI enhancements:
Its a question of geography, I dont like floating panels, I like to know where everything is - always. Sticky panels would be nice. 4 monitors would be nice also.

Matt's interface does provide one good solution, another would be that floating panles could pop-up centred on current mouse position, and dismiss automatically.

This could work very nicely with more support for multiple button mouse devices e.g.

Thumb button = toggle dismiss/recall current panel centred on pointer (would be smarter than the TAB key as it exists now)

and user definable mouse chords with keyboard modifiers would be beautiful, I use these in Microstation and they are unbelievably fast

... could be implemented without a total rewrite?

Really great of Newtek to open a discussion on this.


edit

a click in the viewport to dismiss all panels, a thumb-click to bring last back, tab to bring all back

Harlock
07-20-2003, 03:53 PM
Thanks for the previews and oportunity for feedback!
While I'm not crazy about either design, If I had to pick one, I like the second one, I really don't like the first at all. I think they both look jarring and bulky, I prefer a sleek, glossy, colorful design like the newer MAC GUI's. (OSX?, I'm not a mac user so I'm not sure what version I'm even thinking of).
I hope that's not too opinionated for this post:D

freerider
07-20-2003, 03:55 PM
Personally I quite like the new design suggestions. I'm not a fan of to dark UIs allthough it seems it's where most apps are going these days. Seems people feel they look more professional. I'prefer a little less of a "graveyard look".

What I really like about the design suggestions, is how much easier it now is to see what tools belong in what group. Regardless of what you deside to to about round buttons or not, I hope you keep the nice separation between groups.

js33
07-20-2003, 04:03 PM
I kinda like the DFX look. I have DFX and haven't had time to install yet and I already like it.

But also I'm more concerned with workflow improvements.

Why can't the scene editor, graph editor, surface, image, spreadsheet and motion mixer all be in one window with tabs at the top to switch like other LW panels?

I would rather have that then 6 different windows.

Cheers,
JS

Gregg "T.Rex"
07-20-2003, 04:16 PM
Hello guys...
I've been watching silently this thread and since i was
mentioned here as the "LW Waver from Greece" :D,
i thought this is a good time for me to jump in and post
once again the link for, what i whould like to call:
"MEGA-Surface Editor for feature LW versions".

It was done last summer, its totaly fiction, made with Photoshop and not about
cool diesgns and stuff. Its only about needed features.
I was planning to do a second one presentation, about connection workflow but had too much work and haven't had a chance so far...

Anyway, here's the direct link to that... uhm... dream:
http://users.otenet.gr/~darkjedi/Index.htm
It uses Viewlet Builder and need Java to run properly...

Thanks,
Gregg "T.Rex"
----
ps: I had much more expectations from LW8 interface...:(

Dick Ma
07-20-2003, 04:28 PM
I made a little interface test....just for fun...
Actually I like something cleaner, but attractive.

js33
07-20-2003, 04:36 PM
Hi Gregg,

I just watched your Surface editor presentation and it looked pretty cool. I wonder how much of that could actually get into 8?
Maybe you should work for NT as a consultant.

Cheers,
JS

VascoDa
07-20-2003, 04:37 PM
LW already HAS GREAT interface.

but if u have to do something...

1. NO rounded buttons. [XSI has much worse interface than LW7.5]

2. Scalable fonts & tool boxes. [I can`t use higher resolutions 1600x1200 coz I can`t read tool boxes]

3. Fix problems when two monitors are present. After hitting TAB twice, active panels jumps back from monitor2 to monitor1.

4. Allow change colors of particular buttons

5. Do an ExpertMode [only viewport, without toolboxes]

Fast and usefull interface = less mouse moves and less mouse buttons clicks.

[I still believe LW8 will be more than new interface,
coz if not, it looks a bit like wearing corpse before funeral.]

allthebest

Nicolas Valencia

Dick Ma
07-20-2003, 04:38 PM
Sorry, here.

Gregg "T.Rex"
07-20-2003, 04:46 PM
>js33 said:
>Hi Gregg,
>I just watched your Surface editor presentation and it looked >pretty cool. I wonder how much of that could actually get into 8?

I wonder that myself... :)

>Maybe you should work for NT as a consultant.

I wish... :)

Thanks,
Gregg "T.Rex"

ps: As Chuck have stated, Luxology have nothing to do with LW feature. So, ignore Luxology from my last states of that presentation...

Anttij77
07-20-2003, 04:46 PM
I did a slightly updated 7.5 gui, just for fun. And now it might be the right time to show it...

It's not much different than the old one, but i like it myself...
( It does have slightly rounded buttons, however! )

GruvSyco
07-20-2003, 04:51 PM
So what about a compromise between what Deuce posted and Matts concept? Current LW interface with Matts color scheme and Button/Tab styles. I do think the buttons in the mockup look a little gawdy. In the end, I don't think it matters a whole lot though.

Psyhke
07-20-2003, 04:51 PM
Anttij77,

Yes! I like that, subtle rounding of corners is what I like. For my tastes, get rid of the brushed steel and you have a winner!

:D

js33
07-20-2003, 04:55 PM
Anttij77,

I like that. Not much different than the current though. :D

Dick Ma,

No offense but that is just plain ugly.
I don't like the orange everywhere.
Kinda reminds me of an old Amiga program where someone went nuts with the RGB sliders. :D

Cheers,
JS

DaveW
07-20-2003, 05:00 PM
I like the second one a little better, but the selected tools need to be made more obvious and the gradient in the background of the lights panel needs to go. I think it would be cool to have button color presets and NT could include both the dark and bright schemes, and users can make their own and pass them around. Skins would be even cooler.

About the drop down menu next to the wireframe menu, I didn't see that question answered but I'm guessing it's the menu for bone weight shade, x-ray, reset position, ect.

About Matt's interface: It's nice but far from perfect. I think the nice thing about it is the saved space by having some panels docked. I think that if LW8 gave the option to open any panel in a viewport or a seperate window it would help a lot. Also I don't think Matt's interface would work very well with Modeler, and Layout and Modeler should have a similar look.

Anttij77 I like your design a lot, I think rounded buttons, or at least rounded corners, looks a lot better than the rectangle buttons in 7.5. I think the brushed metal needs to go (never liked it) and the colors could be a little more saturated, but overall I think it looks really nice.

takkun
07-20-2003, 05:01 PM
Anttij77, I love that interface look that you've created! Newtek, check it out!

It's like an XP style but not as cartoony. Very cool.

Stewpot
07-20-2003, 05:08 PM
This must be the longest thread in history on rounded buttons!

Personally, I like rounded - but 'flat' rounded without the bevel. Much like the buttons on the current version, but with rounded corners.

Additionally, I was pleased to see that there were no icons anywhere!! I'm with Zarathustra on this one.

Oh, and some shade of grey, or at least muted colours.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-20-2003, 05:29 PM
You need an exorcist for that interface Dick Ma. I'm going to go weep for a while before tearing out my eyes. Thanks.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 05:35 PM
Speaking for me, not at for NewTek...

I like Attj's one, too - but I'd like it darker...

dennis
07-20-2003, 05:45 PM
I also prefer Anttij77's look to the first two, I'd also prefer it to be darker.

Once again, it seems like making colors easily user modifiable would please allot of people. (I know that you can do this now but being able to switch them from within the program and see them update would be cool).

Gregg "T.Rex"
07-20-2003, 06:15 PM
Speaking of screen real estate...
Attached are screenshots from my curent Layout and Modeler
custom interfaces, i use at work...

How am i gonna fit all my buttons on a 1600x1200 desktop,
with all that funcy beveling and shadowing decors? :mad:

I vote for a slim, slick and clean interface. And if we could get
rid of the Windows Title Bar from all the non-modal panel (like we can in Aura) that would be fantastic!

lunarcamel
07-20-2003, 06:18 PM
Ugh, I hope LW8 does not look like that.

After switching over to Maya 5 for a bit I feel like LW has a long way to go with it's interface. I've used LW since the Toaster days and it's come a long way - but this isn't doing it for me. Looks like a quick attempt to make something old look new.

I'll wait until I see more before I continue my rant ;)

CoryC
07-20-2003, 06:31 PM
Between the three being tossed around my first preference is Matt's version. The grey may be a bit hard on the eyes after 12 hours of use but I like the layout and the expanding/colapsing views.

2nd choice would be Newtek's #1 except with the blue buttons instead of yellow.

I am more concerned with what a button does than how it looks so I could work with any of the three really. As long as I don't need a rosetta stone to decode button icons I am happy.

Zithen
07-20-2003, 06:41 PM
I really like Anttij77's UI. The slightly rounded edges are perfect. If it had to go darker, I'd say a tad darker. Certainly not as dark as Newtek's first pic.

And if Newtek went with the first UI pic, I would also prefer a blue color opposed to the yellow. That and maybe lighten the background a bit, maybe. I'm just not a fan at all of everything being dark-grey, especially the viewport.

Lamont
07-20-2003, 06:44 PM
Hmm.. the slight rounded buttons are great. The click on the envelope button to apply and modify are extreamly cool. I just had to copy and paste a ton of envelopes last week. That would have sped things up.

I feel NT knows what they're doing. LW 8 will have tons of big features, and scads of little ones that aren't apparent on the surface.

Wow, two requests for "Hide the interface"... :D

I'll be watching the boards more for more of these announcements. It's great to get this "tease".

I also would like to see the concepts of the interfaces for LW8 all the way to the final release.

I'm gonna buy my upgrade.

KillMe
07-20-2003, 06:46 PM
its funny i had a go of maya ple 4.5 and i assume 5 is veyr much teh sme and my first though on seeing the interface was ughh - its clucky and hard ot use and ugly and well it jstu made me run back to lw and thanks the gods of 3d animation i didn't have to use maya

if lw interface ended up looking like maya's i would be one seriously unhappy guy, of cource it might inspire me to give up 3d aniamtion and move ot the carribean to be a scuba diving instructor

Matt
07-20-2003, 07:06 PM
Oh my word!!!!

I don't check the forum for two days and all hell breaks loose!!!

:)

Geez, where do I start! To say a lot of people don't care about what LightWave should look like is a total under-statement!
Talk about a hot potato, how many posts!!!

Thing is, people have to work with LightWave everyday, and if they don't like the interface, or some part of the interface it will annoy them, everyday, every minute, so it has to be right, you're messing with something very dear to peoples hearts!

I like many others must congratulate NewTek for being brave enough to show design concepts this early on, remember the competition could be reading this too so NewTek are leaving themselves open a little here, we should applaud them for being brave enough to do so.

Unless of course it's all a red herring and they plan to do something totally different!!! ;)

Thanks must go to all those who have spoken positively about the 'vX' concept interface, I had no idea so many people appreciated it, I'm a little taken back by that!

However as some people have pointed out, it's not perfect, it's just one idea from the many forms the LightWave interface could take, not everyone is expected to like it, which is why the main thrust behind it was user-configurability, it's the only way to please everyone - allow them to make it their own.

I would like to clear a few things up however:

It takes up too much space

The main screen mockup on the website is showing a small screen space, the only reason for this was to aid scrolling around the screen in Photoshop while I was designing it.

Most users operate a much higher screen resolution than shown which would give much more space to the main viewport.

All of the tabs / menus can be either torn off to float, or double-click collapsed when not in use, the functionality of the interface is shown here:

http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/gfx/lightwave_vx_functionailty_tbn.jpg (http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/gfx/lightwave_vx_functionailty.jpg)
(Click for large version)

So it would be totally possible for those that operate two monitors to have all the palettes on another screen with the main viewport on another. It would also be possible to have a configuration that follows the existing LightWave interface as it stands.

There is too much space around the buttons

Well, this is a personal preference I'm afraid, I don't like cluttered user interfaces (who can honestly say they do?) Cluttered interfaces generally tend be to badly designed, confusing, or are very old programs that have had feature after feature added to the interface without much thought to workflow impact.

I don't like heavy looking interfaces, I like ones that appear 'light on their feet' (i.e. fast) and clean looking (easy to use) without button borders squashed too close to the text, but that's just me!

The vX interface could be easily 'shrunk', reducing the spacing between buttons / menus / text etc. In fact it should be a user setting, rather than hard-coding a button width / height it would be based on a user percentage setting with some degree of 'design control' held by the program to stop users creating interfaces that get out of control!

But there is a certain 'breathing space' needed around buttons, in graphic design terms, it's not the shape you've designed but also the space around it too!

It's too light

Again this is down to user preference, so it should be user-defined (like it is now in LightWave but extended further) however, you show a light grey version and people think that's it! So here's a dark version! :)

http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/gfx/lw_7_5_interface_dark_thumb.jpg (http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/gfx/lw_7_5_interface_dark.jpg)
(Click for large version)

- - -

To re-iterate what policarpo has been saying throughout, the vX interface would not be easy to implement in LightWave 8 (and he should know working in Frog Design's interface dept. - I'm not worthy, I'd kill to work there!!!) this is why it was called vX . . . version 10! (It was never a reference to nerve gas!!!)

It would require a total rewrite of the interface code, and the degree of user-configurability we're talking about here is absolutely massive!!! Not to be taken lightly at all!

- - -

However dragging myself back to the purpose of the thread's initial post, comments regarding the look of the two design concepts.

I'm ignoring the colour schemes because they will be user-definable right? :)

I have to agree with what most people have said regarding the rounded buttons, they look too 'heavy' for my liking, the radiussed corners could also hinder the clarity of the text they hold, not to mention that heavy borders all take pixels away from workspace (which seems to be a major issue) do we need borders at all?

http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/gfx/rounded_vs_square.jpg

For me the first concept has too much contrast, this is a problem with really dark interfaces with white text, it will become uncomfortable after a while, which makes me prefer 'looking' at the second concept.

Having said that though, the second concept looks too much like the Windows XP silver theme (I don't care for XP's 'luna' look at all, too clunky!) which makes me prefer the 'look' of the concept 1!

So I guess if I had to go with this concept it would be a merging of the two, but given the options however I think I'd prefer to stick with the current interface but lose the brushed look, add more control over ALL the UI element colours, and add the ability to change the default font being used.

Actually I can't believe no one has mentioned the font yet, the font shown in the concepts looks like 'Tahoma' to me, which is better than the font currently being used.

A font sensitive user interface is a must, being able to change the font adds a huge impact to the look of an interface.

- - -

While this thread is talking about the look and feel of the interface, deuce did point to one area of workflow, I'd like to add to it: Can we have some of this please . . .

http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/gfx/drag_and_drop.gif

Cheers
Matt

CIM
07-20-2003, 07:10 PM
Originally posted by KillMe
its funny i had a go of maya ple 4.5 and i assume 5 is veyr much teh sme and my first though on seeing the interface was ughh - its clucky and hard ot use and ugly and well it jstu made me run back to lw and thanks the gods of 3d animation i didn't have to use maya

if lw interface ended up looking like maya's i would be one seriously unhappy guy, of cource it might inspire me to give up 3d aniamtion and move ot the carribean to be a scuba diving instructor

Clearly you didn't even try to learn how to use Maya or you'd see how much better designed it is (worflow-wise).

wp_capozzi
07-20-2003, 07:13 PM
I would have to vote for a cleaner interface. I'm happy with 7.x interface.

I'm not so much against the rounded buttons for LW 8, but the drop shadows and bevels are very distracting, and would seem to take up too much UI space.

Dark or light schemes are fine. I think readable button titles and entered values are extremely important, as well as some kind of contrast indicating whether a button is on or off. Distractions are counterproductive. A customizable UI would be welcome, even if it's just changeable skins at it's most basic.

Personally, I'm much more interested in the inner workings of LW 8. I would hope workflow enhancements means less fishing and clicking for tools, more intuition and continuity between panels, and very, very importantly that features and especially 3rd party plugins will work consistently.

Being a LW user since version 3.1, it feels like home most of the time. I can't say that there hasn't been a creeping dissatisfaction with "it" over the past few years. Focused functioning features and streamlined interface are most important to me as an existing LW user.

- Bill Capozzi
- Dedicated Digital

Matt
07-20-2003, 07:21 PM
well said wp_capozzi!

:)

nuclearchutney
07-20-2003, 07:22 PM
hehe this is playing devil's advocate but is it me or was Matt looking at Messiah Studio when he created these comps? Both Messiah Studio and Animate's interface look pretty similar.

hehe maybe Fori, Lyle, Dan and company have been included in the LW dev team this time around.

milkman
07-20-2003, 07:45 PM
i REALLY hope Deuce/Stranahan reads this. It was said that there were other prototypes shown, but that these were just two of them.

COULD YOU SHOW US THE OTHERS?!?!?!

:confused:

:)

Cman
07-20-2003, 07:48 PM
Wow, Matt's design rocks even more that I see how configurable he designed it.
Sweet job!

I also like Attj's diminished rounding, for a more immediate application.

Matt
07-20-2003, 07:55 PM
nuclearchutney said:

". . . was Matt looking at Messiah Studio when he created these comps?"

was influenced by lots of other interfaces, but not Messiah, and I hadn't seen Digital Fusion until LightWolf said to look at it, which was after I'd done and posted all this work the first time!

Main influences were Adobe / Macromedia / NewTek

:)

Matt
07-20-2003, 07:57 PM
oh, Anttij77's version of the rounded look is much more subtle, I prefer it too.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 07:59 PM
Nice to see you on the thread, Matt....

policarpo
07-20-2003, 08:03 PM
eh...this is all a big distraction.

just show us cool features and what the v8 will do for us so we can all lose sleep for the next week.

just show me 1 movie of some cool dynamics simulation.

i could really care less if the UI changes at all for v8. these conversations are best suited for afternoon lattes slurps and bar chit chat.

i am interested in workflow enhancements and VFX optimizations so i can blow things up faster and cooler than ever.

Leave the UI dialogue for v9. really.:D there isn't any point in drastically changing the UI if there isn't any rearchitecting going on.

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 08:06 PM
Movies are coming up....don't you worry....

nuclearchutney
07-20-2003, 08:06 PM
Originally posted by policarpo
eh...this is all a big distraction.

just show us cool features and what the v8 will do for us so we can all lose sleep for the next week.

just show me 1 movie of some cool dynamics simulation.

i could really care less if the UI changes at all for v8.

i am interested in workflow enhancements and VFX optimizations so i can blow things up faster and cooler than ever.

Leave the UI dialogue for v9. really.:D

Well yeah.
Policarpo's right!
I really wanna see demos the new rigid bodies and the soft bodies system. I never was the biggest fan of Impact.

Also high on my list, is the new character tools being included. Would love to see whats coming.

I guess like the rest of the public will have to wait till Siggraph hits.

Go Newtek Go!

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 08:07 PM
And by the way - this isn't a distraction. Matt summed it up well - people use the UI everyday.

This thread isn't keeping us from revealing more. More stuff will be posted, soon enough.

hairy_llama
07-20-2003, 08:07 PM
"Movies are coming up....don't you worry...."

Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet :)

policarpo
07-20-2003, 08:11 PM
just doucing the fire with more fuel ya know.

my daddy always told me if someone is gonna talk about the big fish they caught they had better serve it up on a plate or there'd be hell to pay.:D

Stranahan
07-20-2003, 08:13 PM
Poli,

Dude - you can just come on over. I live like 20 minutes from you...let everyone wait. We have the software in Austin...


:D :D :D :D :D

policarpo
07-20-2003, 08:19 PM
Sweet!

Sounds like a plan.

Is it at the house or the studio. :)

Man i love LightWave.:D

mdunakin
07-20-2003, 08:21 PM
Personally, I like the "current" interface the best.
If anything, maybe just lighten things up a bit and maybe use the coloring of the buttons on the second screen shot, but really, those round buttons get on the nerves of the eye, IMO.

I don't like the too dark of one and I don't like those gradients on the second one.
If anything, take the basic "look" of Matt's designs, (minus all that crap at the bottom that bogarts half the screen space) but keep the same basic "layout" of the interface that currently is used.

And PLEASE let's make it so that when I click to minimize a panel, that the next time I go to minimize that same panel, the window will be where I want it when I minimize it.

Totally gets on my nerves when every single time I minimize a panel, like say, Viper or the render window, it ALWAYS falls right over the top of the slider and buttons down at the bottom and I have to every single time, move the minimized little windows up a bit to get out of the way.
And YES I do minimizing a lot with windows, as I like to keep the current renderings or Viper or whatever still loaded up, so that way I can compare changes made to what the last rendering looked like and so on and so forth.

Hope that makes sense to others?
Maybe this is something that just can't be done, because of the way the OS works, I don't know?

And I hope that they actually will let it also keep my settings for the antiailiasing on or off in the Surface panel's Preview Options.
I get so tired of having to set that to use Antialiasing every single time.

Anyway, that's my basics on the supposed new "looks", but I'd much rather they spend time on "important" things, not messing with an already great interface design. But if they "have" to mess with it, then keep it "mellow" and not hard on the eyes.

thanx........................md :)

DigitalDeuce
07-20-2003, 08:25 PM
In response to a few people -- here were some of the other designs of the interface.

Bear in mind -- the main focus of this exercise was the look of the buttons -- and a look at color.

Again, these are photoshop, and are not screenshots -- more 'artist explorations' as it were.

http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/mockup_1.jpg

DigitalDeuce
07-20-2003, 08:26 PM
and another:

http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/mockup_2.jpg

DigitalDeuce
07-20-2003, 08:26 PM
and the other:


http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/mockup_3.jpg

nuclearchutney
07-20-2003, 08:27 PM
Originally posted by Stranahan
Poli,

Dude - you can just come on over. I live like 20 minutes from you...let everyone wait. We have the software in Austin...


:D :D :D :D :D

Thanks for messing with the rest of us :)

policarpo
07-20-2003, 08:30 PM
Originally posted by DigitalDeuce
and another:

http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/mockup_2.jpg

i prefer this one...but you gotta kill that background gradient.

flat colors in large areas like backgrounds and such work best with this sort of UI treatment.

:)

mdunakin
07-20-2003, 08:36 PM
Hey Deuce, thanx for posting these up :)

As for the latest version, "deffinately" the first of the last three you just now posted, is by far the best one.

I guess I have to feel that the round buttons are just too distracting and more then that, they come off as looking like they took the 4.0 version look and tried to make it modern, which doesn't feel right or look right.
Or at least not IMO.

And the mellow colors look a lot better on that first one too.
Still am not sure how I feel about the gradients in the panels, but not sure why?
Maybe it's just because the thing tries to bother the eyes when you see the left half all bright and the right half darker?
Not sure what it is?

Anyway, still nice to view and critique these either way.
maybe if they just made it so that there were different "skins" or something, then there could be several styles for people?

...................md :)

CoryC
07-20-2003, 08:52 PM
I think the first of the new images (mockup_1.jpg) are the best of the 5 Newtek has posted. The gradient could be toned down some though. Mockup_3 is a close 2nd. It could look really good with the radius on the buttons smaller like someone did in an earlier example.

Psyhke
07-20-2003, 08:56 PM
Hmm. I think that new one (the first of the new set) is easily the worst. The prevalent clunky squareness, the heavy use of gradients, the hodge-podge of bland and mismatching tints of color-- all add up to one of the least aesthetically pleasing interfaces I have ever layed my eyes upon. All MHO, of course.

js33
07-20-2003, 09:02 PM
Deuce,

I like the DFX version but perhaps lighten the dark gray color up so there is not too much contrast. Have you ever read a web page with white text on a black bkgd. You know how that is bad on the eyes. This could also be bad on the eyes after hours of looking at it if the bkgd is too dark. Also I would like the highlight color to be blue instead of yellow if you are going with the DFX design. Also I agree with losing the gradients in the popup windows.

Cheers,
JS

Nightwalker
07-20-2003, 09:05 PM
You now, the more I look a those roud buttons the more I like them... The first impression was negative maybe because its so diferent for what I'm used, but after a wile looking at it...with a litle less bevel it might do the trick IMHO.

lord
07-20-2003, 09:26 PM
Get rid of the gradient background, it's a bit cheap, no offense. The bevels would work fine if they were much less obvious.

Having said that the squared buttons version below looks cleaner, more sophisticated less cluttered, still need to remove that gradient thing please.



I still havn't established whether the color scheme will still be customisable or not? That's quite important for a few of us I think.

Cheers,

Lord

archiea
07-20-2003, 09:26 PM
thanks again deuce..


Sorry bit I think its stepping back from 7.5's simplicity. I have both your mock ups and LW's current up now.

Some tips"

Alot of people using Combustion feel the interface too cluttered. Shake users aren't liking the bubble bevel, as porposed in one of your concepts.

The premise being that an unatrursive interface wins... no shading, beveling, gradiants. Its all distracting. It makes the interface look too candy. Rounded tabs clutter the screen as they insist on taking up screen realestate without offering any more clarity. its all just embelishments without adding functionality.

Also loosing the ever so slight pastel color coding for grouping of buttons is also a step backwards.

I see all of these designs, while polished, are trying to look too fancy. Too much like an deluxe MP3 player or $99 enthusiist app that requires a busy display to attrach impulse buyers. Really think minimal. use contrast to separate, not just all over to make it flashy, otherwise, keep contrast minimal, as its heavy on the eyes.

Note the current 7.5 interface...

The slight grad on the tabs draw your eye to the left, helping to read the text.
The scrlling timeline has a grad towards the bottom to variably add contrast to the black nubers. thats more soft, pleasing and lest straining tham black on light grey background.
Look at how much more open the space looks without all of the curved beveling.

Lightwave just doesn't need such a facelift to match it to the busy, cluttered(read: appearance of more features) layout of other packages....

Look at Quantel... the interface, with its pink, grey and black display looks boring. Boring is what you need if you are staring at it for hours, not loud...

or

Just look at the interior of an Audi TT. Simple. No overdesinged embellishments

I hope this helps...

DigiLusionist
07-20-2003, 09:46 PM
Of these, I prefer the first and third, with the third being the best (to me).

Mike Pauza
07-20-2003, 09:55 PM
I vote for #1

It's visible, clean, non Max-like, and XSI-like...only better. Awesome! Do get rid of the window gradients though, add docking, and allow for multiple custom window configurations controlled by hotkeys. Nice work.

-Mike

CIM
07-20-2003, 09:57 PM
Originally posted by DigitalDeuce
In response to a few people -- here were some of the other designs of the interface.

Bear in mind -- the main focus of this exercise was the look of the buttons -- and a look at color.

Again, these are photoshop, and are not screenshots -- more 'artist explorations' as it were.

http://www.cimagineering.com/lightwave/mockup_1.jpg

Clearly this one looks by FAR the best:

- The buttons aren't TOO round.
- It's one nice, cool color. The multi-colored ones don't look professional.
- The dark grey and yellow one just looks like a cheap ripoff of Combustion or other compositing apps.

milkman
07-20-2003, 10:11 PM
The first one of this new batch (the one CIM posted above) is by far the best out of any I've seen in my opinion :)

Ramon
07-20-2003, 10:29 PM
Personally, I like the grey one. it's less intrusive due to the lower contrasting button colors. This would help focus on the scene better due to less distraction.
However, it would be nice to have the option of either one and the option of having the highlighted buttons whichever color you want. That way, whichever colors are more pleasing to your eyes is the one you would choose of course. Hope to see much more at Siggraph in S.D.

Newtek, I'm glad to see that the look is not a radical departure from LW7's interface. However, one concern is; the button (menu) column is not wider is it? I would not be too happy about anything taking up more scene real-estate.

Thanks and nice job so far,
Ramon

polas
07-20-2003, 10:31 PM
Square buttons are much much better! I don't like those round ones. To be honest I really like current LW7 look and in my opinion workflow should be improved not button design...

IMHO in new interface projects combustion gray/yellow collors are better because of higher contrast between selected and unselected items.

-Pawel

milkman
07-20-2003, 10:32 PM
Just saying the "grey" one is a bit... general. All of them have grey.

:)

Chris S. (Fez)
07-20-2003, 10:35 PM
I'm with CIM too. Maybe make the RGB values display and the "X" slightly more pastel. Those round beveled buttons are really distracting. Square buttons are much easier on my eyes.

UnCommonGrafx
07-20-2003, 10:50 PM
Wow. This is research and marketing as they speak about in schools!

I really don't care about this portion of the program, generally, as I'm not asked and have to use what they give me. :o
Gradients are cute for a UI, not functional.

Seriously, I like that the shortkeys are right there, obvious, for those learning. It would mean that people would learn the shortcuts better and would be more entrenched as to the 'hardcore' user-type. This is good.
But as many have said, it's really about the workflow that folks are interested. The menu action was cool.

I really just want a very capable program. I want one where the users' were listened to, regardless of the re-write issues.

I have (and will continue to do so) purchased my upgrades blindly, as I am not a programmer and rely on youse guys to give me good sh... um, stuff.

Mesmerize me. Show me what I'm gonna whip my comp with. I have to be honest: if you give me the opp to change the UI, I don't care what you put forth if it doesn't work for me; I'll change it to what I want. That's the beauty of the circa 2000 GUI: user designed, user focused.

So, having said that, I like the roundness, dark, and without gradients; DFX is a good example of no grads but muted.
Now, having paid for it, give it to me. :p

Karmacop
07-20-2003, 11:09 PM
I like Anttij77's buttons much better. They are rounded but not rounded enough to cause wasted space.

I still like Matt's interface. Maybe not all the options etc that he wants but just the look is nice. I also like his drag and drop colours .. although I'm not sure how useful that'd be ..

I like the first new one Deuce posted. The square edges on the buttons look much better. I like the way the titles stand out a bit. I'm not sure about the buttons being 'split' between the title and the shortcut. It sort of looks like the shorcut bit is the button. I also like the muted colours. The interface should be grey, not black or white. A nice neutral grey is the best for working with.

Zithen
07-20-2003, 11:15 PM
Yes, mockup_1 is something I think is closer to what I'd want to use.

But....

I like the blue tint (or a more pronounced color tint) given to the buttons like Spreadsheet, MotionMixer...the main editors, for example the way mockup_3 and even the present 7.5 does it.

Also Anttij77's image has the slightly rounded buttons and tabs which I find very appealing. I'd like to see how that would look, for I think it's an even balance.

I like the indentations in the buttons (the line that separates the black arrows), rather than the straight black lines in mockup_1.

I also think the gradient is too pronounced in mockup_1, but it may not be a bad idea to have a subtler gradient.

Also, the black arrows are a bit too large for my taste. Again, I think Anttij77's example has some nice size arrows. Or just make them somewhat the same size as in 7.5.

The best improvement I like in mockup_1 is that the worldview is a brighter grey. I think that's very important. The other worldviews are too dark.

Overall, mockup_1 is the right direction for me. But just a few modifications here and there would make it perfect for LW8 IMO.

Hey, thanks for sharing the UIs and allowing us to give our opinion!

Ramon
07-20-2003, 11:52 PM
What's wrong with options? How hard is that to program? I'm not a programmer so that's a honest question. If you want square buttons or more of a nuetral interface colors (which is my preference - like it is now in 7.5) then you should be able to choose that option in say, the interface options tab or something like that. Options are what it's all about when it comes to interface esthetics and interface funtionality. Give people the freedom to work in the envirnoment that best suits them.

As I've said all along since L6, Newtek has the LW esthetics going great right now (in 7.5) I love it's no nonsense, straight forward interface. Tools are at easy access which is right on. There is however, some people that have a understandable concern about the "additional" button in modeler. It seems as though all the plugins get dumped into there. To me that's no problem because I know where they're all at - in the additional drop down button.
Here's a thought Newtek - keep that as you have it yet since there are a lot of plugins in that additional button, allow the users to create subfolders within the drop down button which they name as they please and drag whichever plugins they want into those folders. That will allow users to better negotiate the management of so many plugins. Anyways, just a thought.

All about freedom.
Peace

m_luscombe
07-21-2003, 12:43 AM
Originally posted by cgolchert
This is one reason why I never understod why so many people rave about Matt's design. I DO see a lot of good ideas but no one else seems to notice that most of the screen is taken up by empty button space, empty menu space and a relativly small 3d view. It is a good start but has anyone though of functionality or just button placement on it. Last time I looked there was stuff that belonged together and in the image it was spread out like a plane crash.

Maybe you misread my post.

Negative space: good.
Every option known to man with goofy bevels around it: bad.

I was merely suggesting that the style of the VX mockup be given a shot. Not all the speculative stuff like the graphs and stuff on the bottom. Just the look of the buttons, bars and tabs.

It was outlined that this is just a graphics change, not a complete program rework, and my suggestion falls directly in that camp.

Who said that the VX type of "look" would have to wait till v9 or something? If they don't have the manpower to change the button graphics, why are they showing us mockups at all?

jiip
07-21-2003, 12:58 AM
The dark one is "discreet" (3dMax) style, and the lighter design is more individual, but is another windows XP style application.

http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/lightwave_vx/
is very good idea.

sorry!

Dick Ma
07-21-2003, 01:09 AM
Someone said I need an exorist. Never mind.
Well I would like to share my current UI settings.


To UI Designer: Please keep in mind that please keep the flexibility of UI, that is the user can change the color scheme.

I3D
07-21-2003, 01:10 AM
Hi Matt, first of all let me say thank you and the rest of the Newtek team for having the opportunity to share your thoughts and our thoughts on the UI concepts, it is very brave and a wonderful thing to have.

for your design I like the first of the three if your asking, I don't care about colors although cause I know they can be changes at will.

but the reason for my post is off topic :D well slightly off topic and chuck feel free to delete this post if you see fit. But I'd like to have the chance to share a couple of thoughts about the UI.

I've been using for years now along with almost all major 3D apps out there. So my opinion will be greatly influenced by this. but thought these years of using these programs a person tends to have a simple view on how a UI should look like and operate. I'm not going to start naming any 3D app here because this is not about competition (I'll try not to any way ) And to make it clear from the start I want you all to know that even those Appz offer great deal of flexibility in the UI design they still have their short comings like any other app in the market.

That being said I'll start listing some of the ideas to be adapted in LW and might have a good thing to do.

1- Non Panel windows & built in panel windows
looking at how LW operates I should say that having a simple windows to host all the parameter of an item (depending on state and item) with a simple key stroke (e.g. p, m, or n etc) is very intuitive. but in the long run it becomes annoying I'm afraid, especially if your working for 14 hours or more. So the logical step would be to incorporate these windows within the view panel. Just like I can change from Perspective to any ortho view, why not have other options like Motion Graph, Mixer, Parameter window and basically any window that shows at pop window? of course this needs the view panel window to have a functionality to expand in either direction, Vertical or horizontal. but this should be done in a very simple mouse button or a combination of keys. like clicking the Left mouse (or pressing 0 in key pad, thank you Newtek) expands the to full screen, we already have that, but why not have two more option to expand to Vertical (in case of having the surface editor or parameter window) or horizontal for graph and mixer, scene editor. these could be Middle mouse button and may be a right mouse button. You should really see the benefit of this workflow, imagine having the ability to view both the Viper window, Surface Editor and camera view, or front view all at once WITHOUT cluttering the workspace or having non model panels obscuring things all the time. hey even 1600x1200 isn't enough these days

2- Desktop manager, I know we have a predefined choices of ortho view arrangement, but what if I have the option to arrange my desktop as I see fit, and I need access to that. simply have a selection menu at top that lists all the saved layouts of the UI for you to choose from. So if I have a layout for Texturing and another for Dope Sheet for blocking animation, and another one for Graph window with perspective view only. and a third one for mixer with graph and dope sheet. then it would be simple to switch between these layouts at will and depending on the stage I'm in. it's takes allot of hassle to rearrange your workflow, Yeah you can keep them all open but why distract your self.

3- Splitting views. ok this I'm sure will be a tough one :D but you guys rock and I'm sure you can pull it off if you want to. up until now the only way to split windows is not there, unless you consider the predefined choices a solution, but consider this for a second. lets say I have the perspective window at full screen. if click alt-[ for example I will split the window vertically. now if I have my mouse over the left area then I can hit Alt-] and it splits horizontally, now if I bring my mouse over the upper left view I can split it vertically if I want and so forth. what if I want to close a get rid of a window, simply bring your mouse over it and press Alt-/. of course you'll have the option to do that from a right-click pop up window.

4- connecting view, ok this will be hard to explain, but consider the following. imagine if I have a four view split. and I have to combination of view, the top two ones are regular Viper and surface editor. the bottom ones have also a viper and say HV window. I can connect the bottom ones with a number or a letter and the top ones with a letter. so if I change one of the upper window to light view only the upper windows will change to reflect that. so I'll have Viper for Volume Light and Light window. sweet ha? :D

ok so far so good, I'm not shot yet :D I'll continue

5- Tearing of panes. I'm working on a window arrangement and I have the perspective view that I like, I can make a copy of it and also I can tear it apart and have it floating :rolleyes:

6- Easy access to last command. ok LW UI can get extremely cluttered some times, that because people don't like to hunt for a command every time they use it, for instance in modeler if I use like the clone Array allot, I would let it stand out in it's on. that's why the buttons are scattered around because people don't want to go inside menus every time, but imagine this. If I have a like a Clone Menu that hosts all the clone tools in modeler with the choice of adding more. lets say I tend to use Array from this menu allot. I have two options, Have a Hot key for that, and believe me all my hotkey are taken, there can't be enough any way. of I can simple click with the middle mouse button on the Clone menu and it automatically remembers my last choose and execute it for me.

Ok I'm going to shut up now before I get shot or something :D but to say one last thing, LW is a great app and like it more than any other application I use even with it's shortcomings, but it would great and I do look forward to that day when I can do what ever I want with the UI. I am aware of the challenges Newtek face when considering such things and I'm aware of the huge of time it takes to implement something like this, but believe me it's worth the try for future version, yes I'll stick around even if I'm the only one left.

Anyways, thank allot again guys for sharing your thoughts and thanks for reading this far.

Cheers

I3D

riki
07-21-2003, 01:13 AM
Yeah I agree with CIM, the lighter grey one is miles apart. Just a shame we can't keep the brushed metal finish, I think it's much better than the gradient look.

Ade
07-21-2003, 01:23 AM
Dont like it, already looks outdated and linux like.
I liked the UI from whoever did that conceptual LIGHTWAVE X, it looked like itunes and just felt more cleaner. (I know these scretches are prelim)

RLM
07-21-2003, 01:41 AM
It seems like the designers have a tough one here.

I think Mat's design is excellent, and certainly what I would like to see.

However I'm guessing the designers at NT are at the whim of the programmers here and therefore have had a real task on their hands working within some tight restricitions. ie not a total rewrite and not having maybe more input from the start. I did say I'm guessing.

Regarding the right click and drop down menu, that seems like a great addition.

Regarding the design however I think in this case if it ain't broke don't fix it. I realise you can't just sit there twiddling your thumbs or talk yourself out of a job by saying nothing needs doing, but that's my opinion. It seems you haven't had the luxury or freedom of re designing so you've gone for the what seems to be the only available thing embellishment(should really buy a dictionary), and in this case it doesn't really work.

I realise that this initial discussion was whether you like A or B, but I also think the customer should be entitled to got a tad off topic if they aren't convinced by either. Sorry

RPG










:(

takkun
07-21-2003, 01:45 AM
I too am not a fan of the heavy gradients, the thick borders and the button shadows.

Please try a design like Anttij77,

1. slightly rounded buttons

2. 1 pixel borders

3. very faint gradient, like what Lightwave has now.

4. keep the colors customizable with a panel in lightwave to adjust the values.

I think the key is to keep things clean and stay away from anything gaudy or cartoony
and to not use up more space for buttons then 7.x already uses.

And about Matt's vX design: Woohoo!!! I love it. Especially now that he's shown how customizable it could be.

I hope it ends up being v9 instead of vX. :)

papou
07-21-2003, 02:27 AM
i like the Anttij77 style. (but more dark)
i don't like the butter yellow.
i don't like the too much background panel.
there is some undigest interface too here...
a+

j3st3r
07-21-2003, 02:49 AM
I prefer the dark one with yellow buttons...It`s nice that I can see immediately (even if almost sleeping after a 24 hours work) what is the currently selected tool...

stone
07-21-2003, 03:21 AM
will try to add to the discussion with another mockup - original made by kretin, i only modified it so that equally coloured button groups aren't rounded individually.

http://www.peroxide.dk/temp_pictures/MockupUI_Jonny_modified.png

personly i prefer the current colours over the two shots shown, but as long as it customisble then im happy.

/stone

Matt
07-21-2003, 03:53 AM
I like that, nice compromise over what's up in the air at the moment!

KillMe
07-21-2003, 04:18 AM
yup thts pretty cool - with complte colour control that would be great

Red_Oddity
07-21-2003, 04:25 AM
Hey, now that's not only a nice comprimise, but it groups buttons even more...

Dick Ma, dude you are sick...:D

Red_Oddity
07-21-2003, 04:28 AM
BTW...what will the new CTRL-SHIFT popup look like, more like the nice flower like popup Maya has (which works 10 times faster than just another popup menu), it's so much more better to just have everything unfold 'around' your mouse...

Lightwolf
07-21-2003, 04:30 AM
Red_Oddity:
I think Alias have a patent on marking menues, at least on their implementation.
Then again, discreet got around that obstacle in Max too...

aristos
07-21-2003, 04:30 AM
I think that the developers at newtek try to give a new fress look because it's hard to us to understand the new code under lw that always refress and make better....

however I don't like this round buttons style
and I prefere the 7.5 look.

my idea is to not waste any pixe on the screen and I think that is archive in the 7.5 look

also I prefer somthing that is not track my attention out of the subject.

I love lw for many thinks and really dont care if change the look for time to time, if this change is not reall 100% necessary.

I prefer a change that really help me to improve my productuvity.

I think that the dialog boxs need some new ideas (like the camera p|objects p|lights p|effect etc) more close to the windows stlyle maybe - more close to ps style maybe... don't know.


thank you for make lw.
Aristos

comanche
07-21-2003, 04:33 AM
Originally posted by Anttij77
I did a slightly updated 7.5 gui, just for fun. And now it might be the right time to show it...

Very nice! Me likes :D

Cheers,
Andreas

GruvSyco
07-21-2003, 04:55 AM
Here's a really poor attempt to try and apply some of the elements of Matt's "not likely for version 8" interface and apply them to Deuce's mockups. I would have liked to make all the fonts match Matt's, bevel the edges of the workspace a little and just tidy it up more but it's getting pretty late here... maybe some more work on it tomorrow.

http://66.124.151.154/lw_mockup.jpg


This will probably kill my web server.

Lightwolf
07-21-2003, 05:05 AM
GruvSyco,
very nice and clean, I like it... except for the garish neon "I gotta wear shades" green.
So far my favourite, even though I think you could kill the gradients on the buttons too :)
Cheers,
Mike

GruvSyco
07-21-2003, 05:13 AM
Thanks lightwolf but if anyone should get a pat on the back, it should be Matt... I just reworked his interface a little. I'm sure he could mock it up better.

Lightwolf
07-21-2003, 05:18 AM
GruvSyco,
I've already patted Matt though, so now it's your turn :)

On thing that I still find distracting are the little vertical separators within the button, between the button name and the shortcut / hotkey.
I'd expect dual functionality, depending on what part of the button I click on...

Matt
07-21-2003, 05:21 AM
hey that's not bad! :)

GruvSyco
07-21-2003, 05:28 AM
Originally posted by Matt
hey that's not bad! :)

Yeah yeah... I'd like to see you do it though... at least change the fonts. Thanks though.

Nemoid
07-21-2003, 05:43 AM
Deuce, of the latest design posted i like the 1st one, but it feels like a bit heavy and I'd remove the gradient at all. it disturbs instead of giving a lighter look IMO

I like very very much the GruvSyco one! this design is very elegant.and light, relaxing!!!! :)
compared to this one, also the 1st new Deuce posting appears to be heavy and cluttered. Five stars here.

some tips on GruvSyco : the grey has some warm tone. should be neutral,true grey. and the green you used in the timeline doesn't fit.

Dick -Ma i hope u are a very sarcastic man, cause in the opposite case, you really need some help!!!! :)

Karmacop
07-21-2003, 05:52 AM
I like Stone's buttons how they "clump" together. Much better than having them all seperate like in Deuce's. Maybe make them clump be the group they are in instead of the colour buttons though?

GruvSyco's version has a nice colour scheme. I like his buttons more, but I'd maybe remove the edges bewteen the name and the shortcut. I also like I like his tabs (that look like matt's) too.

Karmacop
07-21-2003, 06:02 AM
Actually, you know what'd be a cool interface? If it looked like the new Newtek site. I like the tabs on there ;)

Dick Ma
07-21-2003, 06:15 AM
Dick -Ma i hope u are a very sarcastic man, cause in the opposite case, you really need some help!!!! :) [/B]

Ha ha! Everyone concern about HOW the buttons distracted our visual so they make the buttons in plain color...

I only concern one thing"Where is that function button located in that Layout!!"

Sometimes I think myself using Lightwave is similar as taking gems from the jewel box.

Newtek, please make it more extreme in user interface.

Trulsi
07-21-2003, 06:19 AM
Lovely. *hugs Dick Ma*

mattclary
07-21-2003, 06:56 AM
I vote for mockup_3. I personally like the rounded buttons. I like that the new mockups are more subtle and less "contrasty" than the original mockups.

Thanks for the peek, Newtek!

jeromeOlivier
07-21-2003, 07:13 AM
I like the new design, it has its merits. The round buttons don't add much (as has been pointed out), but the right little bit (for pulldowns & shortcuts) is a good addition. As it stands in LW7.5c, a lot of the shortcuts overlap on button text. This new division is a definite plus.

The pulldown triangles in 7.5 seem cleaner than those in the LW8 mock ups.

Though I don't know how the new menus will be set up - since there'll probably be lots of new commands to go with new features, I'd still like to encourage Newtek to follow Meni's layout. I've been using his menu layout for a while and really like it. It is well thought out and the simplest I've encountered.

As far as color design is concerned, grey works for me. My personal suggestion in terms of tone would be the set-up I currently use: