Have a better default Desktop Environment


I wouldn’t expect anyone to waste even 5 minutes of their time implementing themes and gimmickery of that nature, but I’d be willing to listen to ideas about it - if any real reasons could be presented, that is.

Desktop computers are for doing things. Things like email and other online communications media; composing music; numerical calculations, etc. The operating system is there to support that, in various ways, particularly a file system and a variety of user interface conveniences.

Where the UI can be improved in terms of better support for the things we do on the computer, then we’re talking about real improvement. A simply more glamorous UI appearance, on the other hand, is an absurd and futile pursuit, the kind of thing that gets us nowhere and is never good enough for the people who clamor for it anyway.


Sure, it can be as an optional desktop environment but what is the problem with the original one? It is so clean, simple and even people who don’t know to use computers can easily get used to it. Modern desktop environment takes all the simplicity and making it complicated and messed up. I would not recommended to make a modern desktop environment to replace the existing desktop environment of Haiku. But the existing DE can also be improved by making it simpler or even put some animations, etc. but not like modern ones.


It kinda looks like Windows 98, why would I want something to look crappy?


Nothing looks that bad :smirk:


You, you don’t remember Windows 1.0 :wink:


Windows 1.0 GUI look quite good for its time, for DOS user it must seem like a miracle.
And you cannot deny it’s resemblance with Windows 10. Is this a cycle of GUI fashion? Then seeing Windows 3.1… we can extrapolate next trend and expect super realistic GUI elements with all 3D GPU capability staf. Yes, controls that will look like real diamonds, or chrome, or wood. I think someone somewere already working on that.


If we wait long enough the Haiku look will be trendy again! It would be such a bad idea to change it just a few years before it happens!

More seriously, over the years we’ve seen people asking for more rounded corners and textures. Then for more flat design. I think the Haiku look has a nice balance, with subtle gradients that qelp seeing what you do, without overdoing it. Yes, it looks a bit unoriginal. Yes, you can’t miss that bright yellow window border. But that’s the point.

There are a few tweaks to do here and there, but overall I like the design a lot for it still works just as well after all those years.


I like full tweakable GUI style, and GUI elements theming. I liked BeOS dano style, and BeOS 5 style. It would be good to have them on Haiku as option. Some times is good to not be bored by one style. Also, I think, Deskbar must have independent styling capabilities.
I think this is that what Haiku Must Have.


Maybe theming will be good thing to work on GSoC? And lets`s give devs theire time to make things, that are important to them, like, maybe making system more stable, less buggy and closer to beta?


It would be great if the Theme Manager had both Dano and Zeta themes available for Haiku, unless they’re already there and I don’t know it. I use to toy with the old Amiga theme on BeOS back in the old days :slight_smile:


Theming is a rather boring thing to implement, and probably not enough work for a GSoC project. There are also more important things to work on, especially if the goal is to look towards the past and replicate the BeOS look more closely.

If at least there was a good proposal for a new UI look, that would add motivation foreimplementing it. I don’t remember seeing anything that would motivate me, yet.


I’m under the opinion that Haiku’s UI could definitely use a refresh.

There are too few devs lately though to do a complete revamp though. The goal for Haiku R1 has always been a “BeOS replacement”. R2 is generally where we (as in the community) planned to make UI improvements.

We have been dragging our heels though on R1 due to resource shortages.

My personal favorite mockup is Haiku UI Mockup The exact details have aged a bit since 2009, but it shows that our UI can be improved while keeping our current timeless UX.

If you want something better, i’d recommend writing it. Nobody is going to outright reject a decent attempt at UI improvement. Worst case if nobody else agrees… it becomes something outside of Haiku you can install.


I thought Gonx from WAY back was pretty sweet: http://cotito.free.fr/projects/gonx+index.html


these themes should be included n.n nah but is beautiful themes, and even if haiku today can be compatible with the old zeta themes it would be a good step…


Sure, the UI could use a refresh. I do agree with others that this a R2 task. For now the UI is clean and simple. The downside is it is a bit dated looking. However, I perfer that to a hastily implemented UI that ages in 6 months. A lot of the Linux UIs that have come and gone haven’t been very impressive or timeless. So when we do implement a new UI, I think it’s worth taking the time and doing research and making sure it’s done right. The Haiku devs seem to have very high standards for code quality so I expect that will be the case.

I’m not a front-end expert, but I am curious what the possibilities are to make a UI that is still desktop focused but also works well with touchscreen laptops. Microsoft is trying with Windows 10… but the new touch enabled Windows Universal Apps just don’t seem to fit well for regular desktop use.


Yes on haiku we can change so much. It is not the modern system but i see the vip things not in the design of haiku. We have so much other work to do, to have one time a beta and then a rc.

It is good to talk about it, but this should not the highest priority. If one of you want to work on it, starting up and if your work is good, it will be find a way to haiku. But this should not be the part of the haiku main devs.


where to start? to learn about it, i am very at least interested on understand what is the difference betwen the Zeta themes and the Decorator themes :slight_smile:


Short answer: No, you can’t.


From promoting point of view good GUI theming one of most noticeable features. I think it is a mistake to not acknowledge importance of how OS actually looks. There is ‘must have’ thing that shows that something is modern or outdated. For operating system this is GUI look, not technologies behind that look. You can see how outdated technologies with new dress conquers world (Windows, MacOS, Android). OS look gives first impesion of a product, all succeseful products use that tooday. Only after first impression of how looks something people will look on tech specs.

Lets compare:

  1. Buy PC with newest intel superX (8 core, 4 GHz, 16 Gb RAM) chip!


or this:
2. Buy PC with newest intel superF (2 core, 2 GHz, 4 GB RAM) chiphttp://theitrefurbisher.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/hpz400set-500x358.jpg

— witch you want more?


The first one, because i want a desktop system not a oversized handy.