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aero minimal WIP by nextmario aero minimal WIP by nextmario
I will update the skin every 1-3 days as I find time to work on it. Download and give feedback. Please no mods/rips until I do an official release. I'd like to have a stable foundation before anyone customizes it.

This is essentially an OPEN ART project to create a minimalistic aero interface that is open source, original and functional. I'm having a tough time meeting the functional part since transparency is a design element that's difficult to use effectively. I'm close to a pre-release. I should have done an opaque theme first, much less to worry about.

[This is ALL original work now, as you can see by my lousy widgets :)]

A note about minimalism. I consider Windows Classic theme to be as minimal as I would go, about the only thing I would change are the buttons. A good example of this is HmmXP which I still use. Some styles are too minimal where visual indicators like borders aren't distinct or the active window is hard to find. Good GUI design takes all of these into consideration. I'm certainly no expert in GUI design. I know what doesn't work for me. I strive for simplicity and usability.

[8/12]

Didn't start work on start panel yet. I wanted to be sure I liked the main window first as I will be using elements from there on the start panel. Added some inside roundness and applish active window.

Here's an early design for start panel: [link]

Not worthy of it's own screenshot yet. Will not be doing compact version :( It's open source, so maybe others will mod it.

[8/13]

More tweaks. Min/max/close buttons smaller. Not so much for close, I like its size to let in background. Start panel is almost done. Will redo separators and add a glyph for "All Programs". Still haven't figure out how to render the title bar text better. SkinStudio is so finicky.

[8/15]

Added shadows. Took a step backwards this weekend. Started from scratch instead of overlaying a theme I was given permission to use. All work will be original work, so there will be no open source issues.

[8/18]

Been busy with that overrated thing called work. Well I tried to work on it a little bit tonight and SkinStudio is completely hosed. It doesn't recognize half the properties of my skin! It just stopped working. I even opened skins it came with and the properties for those a re screwed up. Aaaaaaaaaaargh! I'm assuming it's something related to the last update I did a few days ago. It doesn't make sense since there was no update SkinStudio.

[8/19]

Don't have much time to work on it today. I changed the scrollbars. Maybe find time tomorrow to finish this up and have a pre-release.

Added all grippers, reworked start panel to match substyles, added Luna Blue substyle, close to limited release!

[8/23]

I haven't had much time to work on this, so I'll let you guys download what I've got. This is very much a work in progress. Since it's open source, I might as well let you guys try it out and give me feedback. Please give me feedback.

You must have Segoe UI font to use preview. I didn't add any substyles using the the more transparent, reflective inactive windows yet. The next preview will have them.

[8/24]

You asked for it, here's what I was saving for later. Blinding white, color-vacuum black, luna blue and wtf wood. Shadows, etc.

Wood is dead :( Someone wanted pink. These are the final colors: black, white, blue and pink. I'll start to concentrate on the inside widgets.

Tip: If you want shiny, use a dark background with the white substyle.

[8/25]

It's inevitable, so before anyone asks I made a glass substyle. I'm not really into 'glass' themes but I can see the attraction. I still use luna blue and starting to like black.

-

I reworked the glass substyle. The first one was awful.

[8/26]

Added just a touch of bling to the start panel. Changed the taskbar background, the reflective arcs were giving a bubbling effect on dark backgrounds.

-

Paid some attention to white. The inactive window is a more translucent white. Originally, I wasn't going to do a glass substyle so I was using a very transparent inactive window for the white. Anyway, take a look. I actually like the white now. If used with milk or mac'ish icons it would be a clean desktop.

-

Changed buttons, up/down left/right spin, tabs, grid headers, start panel hilite, progress bar. Can't figure out how to skin menus on applications.


[8/27]

Changed menu hilites, scroll bars, sliders, probably other things I forgot about. I'm closer to a beta than I thought.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconpanzertanz:
panzertanz Featured By Owner Aug 27, 2006
nice job !
Reply
:iconmoni190:
moni190 Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
Inactive white windows looks really "milky"! It`s very cool! The active ones would be perfect, when you make it a litte bit transparent so that the background things can lightly shine through! But only a little, little bit!

I like this WBA! It`s the cleanest one I have ever seen! Itīs a fantastic classic theme!
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
I tried a little bit of transparency, about 5% on the active window and depending on the background it dilutes the color. In some cases, it looks better. However, for now I'll stick with active window the way it is. The problem is if I create too many substyles this early, I have to fix any issues in *all* of them resulting in extra work for me. Once this skin is stable it's relatively easy to create other substyles and I'll do some user requests especially from those who've been giving feedback :)
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
Thanks for the compliment! A few more tweaks on the borders and I'll clean up the internal stuff like buttons, highlites. Maybe one more week and I can do a beta release.
Reply
:iconcelix:
celix Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
my favorit is luna blue! I love it :) Good work!
Reply
:iconmoni190:
moni190 Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
THX! The glass-sub is greaaaaaaat! Are you planning glowing capture-button in the final? Now the glass-sub is my absolut favourite, but I like the black-one too!

Very good work!
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
not sure what you mean by capture button, please elaborate.

i want to change the logoff, shutdown buttons (if i can) to match the simple hover effect of the min/max/close. for a little bling, i might make the close button glow outwards but i don't want to overdo it.
Reply
:iconmoni190:
moni190 Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
Sorry I mean "caption buttons"! (close, minimize, maximize buttons in the titlebar!)
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
please comment on the white changes, thanks!
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2006
Yep, definitely the close button. Not sure about the other two but I might :)
Reply
:iconsilverhammer:
silverhammer Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2006  Hobbyist Digital Artist
cool update there :)
just one thing: i would make the Window Borders flat, it looks better this way in my opinion though these are just my two cents ;)
I'll download this Version too, i will have to edit it again though... i'm a transparency fanatic, i need transparence on active window borders too ;)
Reply
:iconmoni190:
moni190 Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2006
Wow! Now the inactive boarders of white substyle look really like glass! Please try to change the titlebar-font to a darker gray and make it less bold and make the white background shadow more blurry! Like in "YAFVC3 1.5 Update" from RoTKiv!

Good work!
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2006
Title bar fonts are a problem in WindowBlinds. According to the lead developer it's MS fault. I noticed how ugly the font rendering was on the title bar and posted the issue on their support site. The lead developer suggested I bold and blur it. I'll try your suggestion and other fonts in the future.

I can't get the shadow right :( It's why why I didn't post these styles initially. I'll figure it out. This is definitely on my TODO list. The only substyle that needs shadows are white. I may remove them from others.
Reply
:iconsilverhammer:
silverhammer Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2006  Hobbyist Digital Artist
niiiice, gotta test this right away :)

btw, thanks for adding me to your watch-list :aww:
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2006
updated borders since you downloaded, download again please.
Reply
:iconsilverhammer:
silverhammer Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2006  Hobbyist Digital Artist
done :aww:
will try it once i get home and post a report when i took a lookie ;)
Reply
:iconmoni190:
moni190 Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2006
I dont like the active "bump" window borders & titlebar! The inactive flat borders`n titlebar look much better! My favourites are the glass & black substyles! Maybe you can change the titlebar-font colour to darkgrayor black with a blurry white shadow in the background? Startmenu & Taskbar is simply great!

I`m looking for the next update that incl. Glass-substyle! Can`t wait to see it!
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2006
try it now, i think you'll like the blinding white and black
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2006
Changed border, bump wasn't as noticeable at 1600x1200. It's flatter 'bump' :)
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:iconcelix:
celix Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2006
~nextmario is still working on the theme I think and there was / is no downloadable release yet!
Reply
:iconnjboy69k:
njboy69k Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2006  Hobbyist Artist
download doesn't work. Was there a change?
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:iconshinekoo:
shinekoo Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2006
Great!
May I write in Chinese?
简洁之至!
Reply
:iconcelix:
celix Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2006
I like your previous version with the no glas start panel!
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:iconcelix:
celix Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2006
Please give us an update! When will you release it?
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2006
I've been busy with work. Will find some time this weekend. Maybe in two days, I'll have something.
Reply
:iconcharly3134:
charly3134 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2006
Look just great :nod:
Reply
:iconvystral:
vystral Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2006
I love it. It's vista without all the stupid-looking-ness!
Reply
:iconjfl:
jfl Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2006
Looking awesome, specially the dark ones, but the others are another god solution. :relaxed:

Can't wait to use it !
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:iconhellburst:
hellburst Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2006
Looking good :clap:
Can't wait to use it !
Reply
:iconkimtaei:
kimtaei Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2006
hmmm cant wait for it to c the daylight...
Reply
:iconkunhuagou:
kunhuagou Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2006
doesn't work
it say no .uis file in the skin yet!
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2006
It's a work in progress. In order to create this under topic under WindowBlindsXP, I had to fake DeviantArt by submitting a zero byte file.
Reply
:iconodd-e-ceed:
ODD-E-CEED Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
any chance of gettin it for windowsblinds 4.5 ???
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2006
It currently works with the latest version, which is 5.01. If 4.5 supports per-pixel alpha blending I'll try to make it work after the initial release.
Reply
:iconodd-e-ceed:
ODD-E-CEED Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2006
that would be kool unfortunatly windows blinds 5+ just freezes my pc and i cant access anything (cant even get into safe mode) so im stuck on 4.5 but all the rele kool stuff is 5 onli :(
Reply
:iconslomo-shun:
slomo-shun Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
I would definately use this theme when it is released. I hope skinners do join this project and contribute to this already minimal, clean, and usable WB Theme.
Reply
:iconmoni190:
moni190 Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
I like such modern classic styles! Very simple and clean! Please release it with a compact startmenu sub-style!
Reply
:iconmoni190:
moni190 Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
It open source? Great! Please release the beta now! Good work!
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
Yes, it is open source meaning rip it, mod it, rename it, do whatever you want with it. (i just ask you give all prior contributors credit in a credits.txt file). I'll make available all photoshop files and glyphs.

It will be released in due time my friend. I believe in quality too :)
Reply
:iconjfl:
jfl Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
This is awesome!
Waiting for the release .........

A :new:fan of you.
Reply
:iconnoucamp99:
noucamp99 Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
Too simple for me what about a colour in the glass or a reflection of some sort maybe to try and give it some depth.
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2006
Hmmm, you think the current screenshots do not have enough reflection? I think it might be a little too much. I've experimented with colored glass. It doesn't work that well. I decided to go with opaque milk instead for the active window.
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:iconavneet:
Avneet Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
looking awesome mate..cant wait for the release..have u worked on ur shutdown/loggoff screen yet ?? if so then post the screeny of those tooo
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:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
oops, i replied to wrong person. no, i haven't worked on logon/logoff. i'm hoping others join me in this project to do things like a logon screen. *nfxus has already agreed to do a styler theme. i could use the help. it's consuming a lot of my time. if anyone wants to join, please don't hesitate to reply. you'll be given equal credit.
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:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
Anyone know how to do inline images. The FAQ says to use the normal HTML <img/> tag but it doesn't work. Here is the start panel, needs a little work but it gives you an idea.

[link]
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
The title bar text is not rendering cleanly. ClearType seems to work on the buttons but not on the captions. I don't see this problem with other WB5 skins. I've tried every setting possible. If any other skinners had this problem in the past and know the fix, please reply. It's really bothering me.
Reply
:iconkimtaei:
kimtaei Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
i respect on ur decision...nevertheless it will be a very perfect theme...putting different colors is a wise idea...and also with 1280X1024
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
hope you like active window
Reply
:iconsunbeam2000:
sunBeam2000 Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
very good job. the shading of the glass is one of the best and interesting, i've seen yet.
and the fact, that u are not creating just another vista-clone again!!

i agree to simplicity and usability. i want to work with it, not just look at it.
looking forward to try it.

nevertheless i would prefer rounded corners and a light shadow. ;-)
Reply
:iconnextmario:
nextmario Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2006
i may add rounded corners at top and a light shadow :) i wanted to be different than Vista but rounded corners are more pleasing and I don't think anyone can say this is another vista clone or rip
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Submitted on
August 11, 2006
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