Awesome License

Good news. The Font Awesome project's founder responded at speed of light to my request and now he plans to release the icon set under the LGPL within a month or so, making the icons as accessible for reuse as the default Oxygen set.

After that the "only" remaining matters would be adaptation to KDE and artistic vision. Here's a mockup of how KWrite's look could be transformed. Original:

To make it play more right I also reworked the Oxygen style quite a bit. Nearly no gradients or shines, post-Vista aesthetics inspired by web and mobile UIs where contrast is king. "Awesome" style:

Last week fri13 commented: "Monochrome icons are terrible from usability standpoint. They don't offer at all same information as colorful skeuomophisim icons."

Whoa about the colorizing the icons to give benefits of color coding?


Disregarding the monochrome vs. colour icon battle, the new icons have little detail and are difficult to decypher at a glance. The extant Oxygen icons are a work of art and are extremely easy to find at a glance. With the new icons, the eye must read the text as the icon does not give enough information on its own.

By dotancohen at Sun, 12/02/2012 - 11:08

At 16x16 or 22x22 (or equivalent physical size for high density displays) I doubt you see difference - if you do, monochrome is better because it's sharp. Information is there - the shape. Gradients and shines at this size do not exist - you can look Eyes work in other way (if you care you can find out some info on that). Also reading happens through entire words, not letter by letter.

If you go to the airport or train station or look at the road signs, you'll see how designers take advantage of sharp symbols in order to ensure fast recognition.

Moreover if you look at the _design_ of the Oxygen icons you'll realize that there are small versions are separately designed by reducing number of details.

Easy test: try to open JuK, Qt Creator and Qt Assistant and try to compare the icons in a task bar at 22x22 or 16x16. or put them in a panel at this size. Totally different icons are hard to distinguish (without reading the associated text) because of confusing colors.

If that doesn't convince you, there's matter of taste - and here the Freedom[tm] helps.

By Jarosław Staniek at Sun, 12/02/2012 - 23:45

This is miserable. Why oh why? Don't go the way of Gnome 3 and other UI designers who are disconnected from reality. If this becomes KDE default, I'm jumping ship.

By jdonenfeld at Sun, 12/02/2012 - 16:42

Don't be afraid. It's enough for me if this theme can be enabled in one click (I said - one click - together with widget style, contrast plasma theme, colors, reasonable fonts) in some future KDE. Regarding defaults, no doubt a good start would be to update the default high-contrast theme.

By Jarosław Staniek at Sun, 12/02/2012 - 23:50

Removing the borders on the side of textarea would make it much cleaner as well.

By pascal_a at Mon, 12/03/2012 - 12:39

I personally think the 'new' flat look of Win 8 is rather terrible. Just like I thought the glassy effects of Mac OS X were rather over the top, and the new 'reality' stuff in Mac is horrible as well. Meanwhile, KDE has had a theme which is both not boring AND not over-the-top: Oxygen. Let's keep it please, it's modern yet light on the eyes, just like a theme should be....

By jospoortvliet at Mon, 12/03/2012 - 14:07