You are not logged in.

#1 2019-05-25 16:50:46

wkd
Member
Registered: 2016-04-04
Posts: 19

GNOME developers against themes?

So I stumbled across this today:
https://stopthemingmy.app/

I tried searching the forums but didn't get anything. Does anybody know if this is for real?
Apparently developers for some pieces of GNOME software are annoyed with distributions shipping varying GTK3 themes or even users theming their desktops.
What are your thoughts on this? Since Arch is all about picking and choosing which components you want on your system and people in this community tend to spend considerable amounts of time tweaking the system to their liking (at least I sure do) I assume most people here will be on the other side of that issue. Although I can imagine that for some software developers it can get annoying to receive bug reports from people using a broken theme.

Personally I avoid GTK3 applications wherever I can as nowadays each brings their own design and with CSDs it just looks really messy to me personally, but overall GNOME3 and GTK3 are widely used. I'm wondering if I'm just some sort of dinosaur when it comes to this.

Last edited by wkd (2019-05-25 16:53:22)

Offline

#2 2019-05-25 16:58:02

Slithery
Forum Moderator
From: Norfolk, UK
Registered: 2013-12-01
Posts: 3,446

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

wkd wrote:

Apparently developers for some pieces of GNOME software are annoyed with distributions shipping varying GTK3 themes or even users theming their desktops.

Read it again, that's not what they're saying at all. They're against distros configuring non-default themes as standard which Arch doesn't do.


No, it didn't "fix" anything. It just shifted the brokeness one space to the right. - jasonwryan
Closing -- for deletion; Banning -- for muppetry. - jasonwryan

aur - dotfiles

Offline

#3 2019-05-25 19:59:25

archimboldo
Member
Registered: 2016-03-07
Posts: 150

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

Slithery wrote:
wkd wrote:

Apparently developers for some pieces of GNOME software are annoyed with distributions shipping varying GTK3 themes or even users theming their desktops.

Read it again, that's not what they're saying at all. They're against distros configuring non-default themes as standard which Arch doesn't do.

And we know GNOME is extension friendly.

Last edited by archimboldo (2019-05-25 19:59:44)


Rules for problems.
Everyone has problems. Animals have problems. And buildings. And cats, and trees.
Problems are your friends. Treat them well.

Offline

#4 2019-05-25 20:06:46

wkd
Member
Registered: 2016-04-04
Posts: 19

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

That's not how I interpreted what they're saying at all. Sure that's part of it, however they're also saying:

This is why we ask respectfully that our applications not be themed. They are built and tested for the upstream GNOME stylesheet, icons, and fonts, so that’s what they should look like on peoples’ systems.

Right before saying that it would be possible to disable theming altogether although they wouldn't want to resort to that. So this is not aimed exclusively at distributions, right? I'm also wondering how they think one should not theme their specific software when using one stylesheet for everthing GTK3, but that's another issue entirely.

They address the user directly here:

If you like to tinker with your own system, that’s fine with us. However, if you change things like stylesheets and icons, you should be aware that you’re in unsupported territory. Any issues you encounter should be reported to the theme developer, not the app developer.

So they're saying it's fine for the user to do whatever, but it's still a thorn in their side. It's basically a "warranty void if..." type situation. (I know there's no warranty whatsoever anyway)

Also following the links on that page it's clear that enduser desires are not regarded very highly.
https://blogs.gnome.org/tbernard/2018/1 … -at-scale/

Offline

#5 2019-05-31 21:29:39

Stewart Little
Member
From: England, UK
Registered: 2017-01-18
Posts: 106

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

I'm rather surprised that they're against themes on the apps that they create. I've thought the whole point of Linux and the GNU License is that it comes with the "freedom" and be less-restrictive like its Windows-counterpart. For that reason I'm not going to take its notice seriously since anyone can modify, create and redistribute software's if its under the open source license.


“Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” -Eleanor Roosevelt
“It is our choices, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” -J. K Rowling
-----
How to Ask Questions the Smart Way

Offline

#6 2019-05-31 22:14:51

robt77
Member
From: Manchester
Registered: 2014-10-26
Posts: 13
Website

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

Stewart Little wrote:

I'm rather surprised that they're against themes on the apps that they create. I've thought the whole point of Linux and the GNU License is that it comes with the "freedom" and be less-restrictive like its Windows-counterpart. For that reason I'm not going to take its notice seriously since anyone can modify, create and redistribute software's if its under the open source license.

You are free to theme it, but if after theming it, you run in to an error/issue it needs reporting to the themer rather than app developer, unless you can recreate the error/issue without the theme being applied.

Offline

#7 2019-06-01 01:12:14

Trilby
Inspector Parrot
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 22,276
Website

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

Stewart Little wrote:

I'm not going to take its notice seriously since anyone can modify, create and redistribute software's if its under the open source license.

So open source developers give you something with no requirement of payment, and they grant you great legal freedoms, but in return ask for one minor courtesy that you in turn deny.  Their generosity in removing legal stumbling blocks has already precluded them from legally forcing you to honor their wishes, but they put some trust in the general decency of open-source users and would assume that their free offering of their software to you would not be met by you spitting in their faces.

It's impressive how comfortably you crawl right under that already low ethical bar.

This isn't to say that there could be rational counterpoint to that letter.  But the premise that because someone released their software as open-source they can be disrespected, their wishes ignored, and their requests about the usage of that software discarded is just disgusting.  This is the mindset of a parasite.  Open-source works because of contributors and despite some leeches - don't take pride on being on the wrong side of that balance sheet.

Last edited by Trilby (2019-06-01 01:19:41)


"UNIX is simple and coherent..." - Dennis Ritchie, "GNU's Not UNIX" -  Richard Stallman

Online

#8 2019-06-01 05:02:36

TarsolyGer
Member
From: Korea
Registered: 2019-05-19
Posts: 56

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

It is a very interesting thing, I'm far from being the authority on this issue, but I'd be interested in someone's opinion who's has more experience in developing graphical UI for software than me.

Isn't it the case, that most of the issue is that there are some parts of the apps where the style is hard coded to the app and other part is taken from the system-wide theme? Like the background of a text input field is taken from the system, and the text color is set to dark blue, so if I turn on a dark theme with dark text input background, the text gets totally illegible?

Starting to use Linux beside Windows made me very happy that when I switch to a certain theme, suddenly all the basic apps take on the same look, and I got sad that Opera looks like a sore thumb with their client side window decorations, and I need to activate the dark theme separately in Opera if I want it to confirm, and when I go back to a light theme, I need to switch in Opera specifically, too. I also understand, that some software have some very unique work flow, so basically every part of the GUI is built ground-up (like in Blender) regardless of any system theme, and from a branding perspective, I kinda see the point of the developers wanting to go for a unique and easily distinguishable look for their products.

In the meantime, as an end user, it would be nice, if buttons in every app looked the same, preferably the way the user wants it to look. Some examples would be high contrast themes for the visually impaired. More bright colors and avoiding confusing colors for those who have some degree of color blindness. So I think, there is a point to be made that app developers should only focus on the placement of the buttons and such as the design process, and let the exact look be defined by the theme the distro or the end user choses.

And I'd hope I didn't have to say this, but it seems like I have to: Of course, everyone develops apps the way they want and design their UI and UX the way they want, and if they allow me to use it with a free, libre licence, I'm more than grateful, and I support their efforts wholeheartedly, and if they don't give a flying f*** about my opinion, I'll still respect and admire and support them. But I would be happy if someone could explain me what I did get wrong about the assessment of the situation.


Nutritional nihilist

Offline

#9 2019-06-01 10:58:39

Trilby
Inspector Parrot
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 22,276
Website

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

TarsolyGer wrote:

Isn't it the case, that most of the issue is that there are some parts of the apps where the style is hard coded to the app and other part is taken from the system-wide theme? Like the background of a text input field is taken from the system, and the text color is set to dark blue, so if I turn on a dark theme with dark text input background, the text gets totally illegible?

Not really, no.  Certainly that's possible, but that'd be bad design on both the program's end and on the theme's end.  Setting only one of text color and text background but leaving the other to be - essentially - random, is just silly and should be considered a bug.

TarsolyGer wrote:

In the meantime, as an end user, it would be nice, if buttons in every app looked the same, preferably the way the user wants it to look. Some examples would be high contrast themes for the visually impaired. More bright colors and avoiding confusing colors for those who have some degree of color blindness. So I think, there is a point to be made that app developers should only focus on the placement of the buttons and such as the design process, and let the exact look be defined by the theme the distro or the end user choses.

Agreed.  This is a rational counterpoint to the letter.  I don't think the requests in the letter are practical either much for these same reasons.


"UNIX is simple and coherent..." - Dennis Ritchie, "GNU's Not UNIX" -  Richard Stallman

Online

#10 2019-06-01 15:22:50

Head_on_a_Stick
Member
From: London
Registered: 2014-02-20
Posts: 4,940
Website

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

Stewart Little wrote:

I've thought the whole point of Linux and the GNU License is that it comes with the "freedom" and be less-restrictive like its Windows-counterpart.

http://islinuxaboutchoice.com

Offline

#11 2019-06-01 17:42:38

Alad
Wiki Admin/IRC Op/TU
From: Bagelstan
Registered: 2014-05-04
Posts: 2,003
Website

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

Ironically, Arch is all about choice. Or people wouldn't have week-long arguments on even the most basic of tools to use.

Last edited by Alad (2019-06-01 17:42:48)


Mods are just community members who have the occasionally necessary option to move threads around and edit posts. -- Trilby
Honest Alad's Package Emporium—Now with added bugs! (Grand reopening: December 1st 2018)

Offline

#12 2019-06-01 18:25:12

ugjka
Member
From: Latvia
Registered: 2014-04-01
Posts: 1,362

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

I can't complain, i haven't contributed a single line of code to GNOME (or KDE or anything significant)
But i do know that programming is a bloody time vampire and many of these guys sacrifice their free time to make free software for rest of the world to use or abuse.
So shut up and move on


ENTER

~ Arch is not Arch unless it is Arch ~

Offline

#13 2019-06-03 16:51:15

jlindgren
Member
Registered: 2011-02-27
Posts: 218

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

It seems like a reasonable request for application developers to make of distributors.  If those developers don't want to spend their free time making sure their app looks good with a variety of themes, that's their call.

But as a counter-example, I'm also an "independent app developer" that uses GTK (for now), and I don't agree with the spirit of their request.  Because I disagree with the very idea of "apps for the GNOME platform".  I think it's unfortunate that GNOME 3 has become this kind of silo, where stuff designed for GNOME 3 is so different from common/traditional UI expectations that it doesn't fit in well anywhere else.  Theming is only one problem; the very application layouts are, well, just weird (in my opinion).

If you're serious about an application being widely useful, then I think that GNOME and GNOME users are too small a target.  I miss the days when there seemed to be more interest in cross-platform apps, which (at least in theory) worked well and looked good most anywhere.  GTK 2.x made it easy to develop an application that *did* respect the system theme whether in GNOME 2.x, KDE, XFCE, or even MS Windows.  In stark contrast, one of the main GTK developers told me in the early 3.x days (on IRC, so this is paraphrased) "GTK is for GNOME apps, so I guess you have to decide whether [application] is going to be a GNOME app or not".

That was one of many signs that GTK3 was not the old GTK anymore -- so we started porting Audacious to Qt (which remains a work in progress).  That effort has been a bit of a time sink, and I wonder about an ideal world where we could all agree on a design philosophy (i.e. do we support themes or not) and a toolkit.  It seems like it allow our combined development time to be put to better use.  Oh well ...

(edit: spelling)

Last edited by jlindgren (2019-06-03 16:52:41)

Offline

#14 2019-06-03 17:16:15

ugjka
Member
From: Latvia
Registered: 2014-04-01
Posts: 1,362

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

I guess that's why electron is so popular, because it (i think?) guarantees that your app will look the same everywhere, at the cost of raaaaaaaaaaaaaam ofcourse


ENTER

~ Arch is not Arch unless it is Arch ~

Offline

#15 2019-06-04 05:50:08

ngoonee
Forum Fellow
From: Between Thailand and Singapore
Registered: 2009-03-17
Posts: 7,244

Re: GNOME developers against themes?

Alad wrote:

Ironically, Arch is all about choice. Or people wouldn't have week-long arguments on even the most basic of tools to use.

Arch isn't all about choice. It's only about choice in small unimportant decisions like which browser to use. When it comes to the important decisions like the holy emacs over the dastardly imposter vim, there is no choice!


Allan-Volunteer on the (topic being discussed) mailn lists. You never get the people who matters attention on the forums.
jasonwryan-Installing Arch is a measure of your literacy. Maintaining Arch is a measure of your diligence. Contributing to Arch is a measure of your competence.
Griemak-Bleeding edge, not bleeding flat. Edge denotes falls will occur from time to time. Bring your own parachute.

Offline

Board footer

Powered by FluxBB