12 Replies Latest reply on Jul 15, 2016 6:12 AM by jameshea

    What do you think is the best theme/interface?

    carlsson

      I have struggled a lot with finding the best theme, but I still haven't found it.

       

      The new themes are all good-looking, shiny and flashy and so on, but my old pre-theme layouts still is better for entering and working with information in the long run. At least that's my and my clients opinion. It's hard to specify what's wrong really, but many of the themes are "blurry", and with that I think I mean that they have too little contrast. But I'm not sure, it's just a feeling I have.

       

      How about you guys? Do you understand what I mean? Have you found a good theme that's easy to work with, or have you made one yourself?

       

      BTW, do you know a place to download more themes?

       

      TIA,

      Andreas

        • 1. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
          coherentkris

          Without definitive objective criteria to assess "best" its not possible to classify themes.

           

          re: Subjective | Define Subjective at Dictionary.com

           

          filemakerthemes.com

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          • 2. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
            carlsson

            That is of course very true.

            But as some people prefer blue, and other red, I think that you and me can agree that there are some themes better than others, right?

             

            So just generally speaking, what do you prefer and why? For normal day-to-day basis of data entering.

             

            It would be nice to see some examples of "THIS is my preferred theme" or "The guys at THIS place really know how to do Human Graphic Interfaces".

             

            Sort of...

            • 3. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
              coherentkris

              Lecture Notes | User Interface Design and Implementation | Electrical Engineering and Computer Science | MIT OpenCourseW…

               

              What you can do is look at the bigs (Apple/Microsoft/FB et al) and see what the have designed. They have staff who are experts on human interaction.

              2 of 2 people found this helpful
              • 4. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                magna

                Hi Carlsson,

                 


                or database has migrated from FM3 to 14, that's a long way. But we found the familiar look of our first design and more so the familiar feel of the functions as they were more valuable than the time spent on recreating "our" theme.
                Users do want NEW and (some) CHANGE, but only if it does feel familiar. Just my 5 cents

                 

                Klaus

                • 5. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                  johnhenzie

                  I check out Filemaker themes & templates when I upgrade. In general, my opinion is that they serve to demonstrate FMP's capabilities, but are too time consuming to emulate.

                  For 18 years, I have used a turquoise background with white date entry field & mid-gray info fields & buttons for our core Db's. I have never tired of the colors & although I have experimented with other, I've only found one other enduring combination.

                  The turquoise background darkens the screen so it's easier on the eyes. Black text is easy to read on the blue & gray. White fields focus your attention on the important information.

                  I use Arial for numbers & Arial Narrow for text. This is because they were the fonts in FMP's templates at the time, and because they are near the top of the font menu, requiring less scrolling.

                  Scripts are initiated by gray buttons which darken when hovered over (text changing to white), and links, which are underlined text which turns bold when hovered over.

                  I used value lists whenever possible.

                  The other color combo is med green with ivory or ecru fields. The very light yellow is great for lists because black text is easy to read but the screen is easier on the eyes (for 8 or more hours a day) than a white background.

                  Anyway, that's my two cents worth.

                  1 of 1 people found this helpful
                  • 6. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                    Extensitech

                    We generally have our own theme, as well, which started with a FM theme but then got tweaked quite a lot.

                     

                    Changing the theme always prompts a lot of debate about what looks and "feels" better, and of course it's largely subjective.

                     

                    Just as a way to clarify the conversation, though, I find it useful to discuss size and position separately from color and line and such.

                     

                    Colors, gradients and so on are more subjective and pretty easy to change across the theme if you decide you got it wrong.

                     

                    Things related to size and position, though, while still being partly subjective, have more concrete effects, such as how things line up, what there will be room for on any given layout, whether you can "poke" it on iOS, etc. Also, once these types of things are established, they're harder to change because they usually involve moving stuff around layout by layout.

                     

                    While the discussions about color, gradients, line widths and so on pretty much never end, we try to focus first on things that affect size and position, and come up with concrete objectives for those things. Once those are established, we can continue to play with colors and such as long as we (or the client) wants to.

                     

                    Just my two cents.

                     

                    HTH

                    Chris Cain

                    Extensitech

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                    • 7. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                      keywords

                      All pretty sensible contributions so far. As already well expressed, it's a very subjective thing—if there was one "best" theme why would FM create so many variations?

                      My contribution is to strongly advise learning how to work with themes and styles, though. The point Chris makes about propagating changes across the theme is an important one, and the easiest way to achieve that is by using the theme and style tools provided. So if, when you say "my old pre-theme layouts still is better" you mean you don't want to adopt themes—which may mean your layout still use the so called "Classic" theme, which is not really a theme at all—then you would be wise to create a custom theme. I would suggest you start with the FM theme you find closest to your wishes, convert it to a custom theme, and then modify its elements to match your previous preferred layout. This at least builds your new, albeit "pre-theme and better", theme on a sounder basis than just renaming your old Classic—remember that Classic is not really a theme but just a way of carrying over "pre-theme layouts" into the new theme environment. One further point, a good idea is to create a master theme file, make all your theme changes their and then import the theme into any working files.

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                      • 8. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                        BillisSaved

                        Good afternoon carlsson,

                         

                        I hope your day is going well. There is myriad information regarding the psychology and complimentary properties of color to be uncovered with even the most rudimentary google-fu skills. When you combine that with the subjective nature of what constitutes appealing colors, you may find yourself pulled into the blackhole of wasted time should you attempt to find a definitive answer to that facet of your question. The problem is really that most people who have a strong opinion in this regard also have the experience or statistics to support it. Here are three things that I have discovered are important when determining the look of a solution:

                         

                        1. The primary colors of your solution should be something that is pleasing to your client, while not turning it into a Christmas tree.
                        2. Most of the end users I've had the opportunity to work with are of the opinion that a light colored back ground is less pleasant to stare at for hours on end than a darker one.
                        3. Ensure that you save your style and theme changes to the file, it will improve the performance of your solution - particularly if it is hosted on a server and accessed by remote and/or mobile users.

                         

                        Of course mine is just another opinion to add to the mix, which may not be a good as some of the others offered here. Good luck and have a great day!

                         

                        God bless,

                         

                         

                        Bill

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                        • 9. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                          keywords

                          "just another opinion to add to the mix, which may not be a good as some of the others"—another subjective judgement to add to the mix!

                          • 10. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                            bigtom

                            The one you make.

                            • 11. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                              PeterDoern

                              BizPraxis wrote:

                               

                              1. The primary colors of your solution should be something that is pleasing to your client, while not turning it into a Christmas tree.

                              +1: if you don't have buy-in from the client, you've set up a big obstacle to the rest of development.

                               

                              If you're starting from scratch with a client, you might want to start with their colour scheme. If they have multiple colours in their scheme, one becomes the dominant colour in your scheme and the other(s) become highlight or spot colours. You might have to adjust brightness or saturation to make it screen friendly.

                              • 12. Re: What do you think is the best theme/interface?
                                jameshea

                                Carlsson,

                                 

                                Here is a link to a free FileMaker file that lets you play with the various elements of the Themes so you can see them before you apply them across your solution. I created a layout in my own start up file with each type of field and object so I can play around with them myself.

                                 

                                FileMaker Themes - Design Palette Our Featured Dev Tool - FileMaker Today - The Original FileMaker Forum & Community

                                 

                                Check it out. And thanks to ChiyoFM for creating the demo file.

                                 

                                Hope this helps.

                                 

                                James