On 2/8/06, Bill Kendrick <nbs@...> wrote:
> On Wed, Feb 08, 2006 at 09:11:23PM -0500, Albert Cahalan wrote:
> > I was thinking that the "currently unused stamps cells" ought to just
> > go away, with the file selector area growing to use the extra space.
> > I was getting ready to do that when I changed jobs, moved, and then
> > was sick for a couple months.
> I was just about to ask what "currently unused stamp cells" referred to,
> and then finally figured it out -- the 'selector' toolbar on the right! :=
> Yes, it should probably go away. The toolbar on the left can go away, to=
> Unless we decide that Tux Paint becomes kind of 'modal', like VI. :^)
> (In which case, clicking the paintbrush, eraser, etc. tools on the left
> would be a way of 'dismissing' the Open screen thumbnail browser.)
I really like the idea of letting the user dismiss the Open screen
by clicking on the left. Then, instead of disabling those buttons,
we could get rid of the cancel button. I'd love to see that dialog
lose _all_ of the oddball buttons.
> > I think it is best to reduce confusion in the "Open" and related dialog=
> > The existing delete button is kind of misplaced. Adding more awkward
> > UI stuff just digs a deeper hole to get out of.
> Yeah, I want "Open" to be as simple as possible. I'd like to move
> "Starters" to the "New" dialog, for example.
That would be wonderful. Start the list off with the current drawing
color, then maybe black and white.
> > Perhaps user-defined stamps should get their own left-side button.
> > That makes a clear distinction, yet gives the same stamp interface.
> The eventual idea will be to have a big "change which stamps set I'm
> looking at" bottom on the right, which would bring up a screen _similar_
> to the open dialog (but more likely it would look like a pop-up dialog,
> like you get when you click 'Quit').
> You would have all of the different 'major categories' (animals, vehicles=
> outerspace, etc.) which would load subsets of the ~250 we have now.
> (And _hopefully_ growing at some point! :^/ ) Along with the stamps we
> provide, a "My Stamps" option would be there, too.
> Sound reasonable?
No way. :-) It might be the only solution though. I'm not seeing
any solution that could rightly be called "reasonable", either for
the kids (using it) or for the parents (producing icons).
> > It also avoids making the stamp listing grow larger. All saved images
> > could show up as stamps. I only see two problems with this:
> > 1. not much space on the left side for that button
> Left side is getting crowded, without resorting to a set of scroll button=
> like we get on the right. At this point, on 800x600 mode, we've got room
> for four more buttons.
Dropping support for 640x480 mode?
I wouldn't waste a button on "fill" alone. I'd rather see the magic
stuff split in two: large area effects, and programmed brushes
Fill and flip are large area effects.
Smudge, grass, and lighten are programmed brushes.
Splitting allows some stuff to reasonably appear both ways.
For example, "lighten" could work either way.
> > 2. the user may still get confused by choosing an unintended
> > option, giving them the wrong set of stamps to choose from
> I feel there should only be _one_ "Stamps" tool button on the left.
> And, as described above, a way to 'swtich' between collections.
Psychologically, user-defined stamps are rather special.
> > One question left is: when does the stamp extraction happen?
> > a. on file save, and stored to disk
> > b. on file save and on Tux Paint start-up (not stored to disk)
> > c. on selection of the user-defined stamps menu (discard when done)
> > d. on 1st selection of menu, and kept up to date on file save
> I'm not sure I'm keen on mixing what the "Save" button on the left does.
> I'm also not sure about so loosely mixing 'picture' vs. 'stamp.'
> I prefer the idea of creating a stamp being a process:
I see this as adding an unnessesary step that kids will have
to struggle with. The unnessesary distinction adds a whole
new set of requirements that the UI has to handle. There has
to be a way to delete the stamp. (the other way, it would not
be jarring to have the stamp be deleted along with the image)
I really don't like mixing selections into this. That would
exclude all the younger kids. If someone wants selections,
they are probably ready to graduate from Tux Paint.
> I admit, though, this does not really cover what one would do with
> regards to later 'editing' a stamp (changing it and re-saving it as
> the same stamp) or deleting unwanted stamps that were generated by the
> "Make a New Stamp" Selection Action button.
Depending on UI details, I expect that editing attempts will cause either:
a. numerous redundant copies of the stamp
b. quality loss via repeated scaling
> > Perhaps the current image should ALWAYS be a stamp, kept
> > continuously up to date. (in the first slot?) One could do some
> > neat hall-of-mirrors effects that way, or magnify a too-small
> > image to fill the screen better.
> Oh man, crazy. :^)
I have some even crazier ideas for users with powerful CPUs.
Imagine seeing 4 copies of the image in a 2x2 layout.
Your brush appears as 4 brushes all at once, drawing
on all 4 copies of the image. It's seamless, so you can
go from one side of the screen to the other without
noticing a boundry. This lets you draw perfect tilable
background images. Where supported (GNOME, KDE,
MacOS, Windows), offer a "set desktop background"
button. Offer the tilable background when creating a new
image, with the normal scaling that stamps have. Maybe
even offer arbitrary rotation. Let the user use the tilable
image as a brush, again with scaling and rotation.
Imagine a make-more-room button. The existing image
shrinks, perhaps by a factor of two in each direction.
Then, extrapolate from the small image to create new
data to fill around it. For example, suppose I have a
drawing of a house on a hill with grass and dandilions.
There is a sky with fluffy clouds and a driveway that
goes to the bottom of the screen. The result should have
a smaller house. The driveway should still reach the
bottom of the screen. The dandilions should be smaller,
but there should be many more. The placement of the
dandilions should be natural, seamless with the ones
that were already there. The grass and sky should go to
the edge of the screen, just as before, with the horizon
being extended in a reasonable manner. (not flat) Like
the dandilions, the clouds should be smaller and more
BTW, there is a 3rd-party gimp plug-in that very nearly
is able to perform the make-more-room task!!! It's called
something like recompose or regenerate. It seems to do
a sort of fractal operation on the drawing. On my computer
(450 MHz Mac G4 w/ PC100 RAM on Maxbus) the code
takes dozens of minutes to process a Tux Paint image.
I got really close with the test image. The driveway often
came out nearly perfect. The house would be untouched.
(the shrinking was done manually, prior to starting) The
grass and sky would partially work; it was possible to get
the grass climbing up around the edges of the image.
> PS - Hope you're feeling well, Albert!
Pretty good, though much busier than I used to be. I have a
new job, and the oldest of my 5 kids is 6 years old.