1 2 Previous Next 18 Replies Latest reply on Apr 26, 2012 10:08 PM by Malcolm

    The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.

    jgalt

      The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy. They look like they were designed by a first year art student in a single day, not a team of professional graphic designers. Most of the themes are very similar with only minor color variations. When you dig into them you quickly realize that there's really not much to choose from.

      The big mistake that FileMaker made is linking the theme shapes and theme color palettes. Users should be able to manipulate these two things independently from each other. I should be able to define my own color pallet and save it as my own preset. How hard would that have been to implement? It seems like a talented programmer could have knocked this feature out in single day.

      Filemaker, you are hindering my ability to design the interface that I want. You have not provided a way for me to manipulate all of the graphic elements that my users interact with. For example, I want total control over the scroll bar appearance in portals. Control of inner and outer shadows on fields. I want to globally define the field glow effect, the tab appearance (inner and outer shadows) etc., etc. Where are these controls? Am I missing the inspector where these elements can be manipulated?

       

      If you give us an update that removes these design restraints you will sell more copies!

        • 1. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
          marianco

          I agree.  The new Filemaker themes are ugly.  I can't believe they were "professionally" designed.

          • 2. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
            intex

            currently you can only edit the underlying css files. In that file everything of what you want is possible. Plus you can create your own designs.

             

            Of course, at least the Advanced version of FileMaker should come with a design editor.

             

            And I agree - the given themes are ugly in most cases und unusable. But they are better than the Bento themes ...

             

            I wonder why there are no system native themes like Leopard, Lion and Windows 7.

            • 3. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
              Vaughan

              They are consistent with the themes in previous versions.

              • 4. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                jgalt

                I can  make minor tweaks to the CSS file and get the results that I want. It's a bit of a pain to do it...but it works.

                 

                The problem with modifying exiting themes or creating your own is that this is not officially supported by FileMaker. In fact, the official word is that they "strongly recommend" that you do not modify or create your own themes. 

                 

                Becuase it's currently unclear what impact creating your own themes could have on future updates it could be a bit risky to do so.  We really need FileMaker to provide more information in regards to why they are "strongly recommending" that you do not modify the themes. I assume that it is becuase they do not want users trying to do something crazy or use unsupported CSS code and mucking things up with their solution.

                • 5. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                  Stephen Huston

                  I suspect they also want the option to change the underlying CSS code in future revs if they need to for some reason, and are warning us that relying on CSS as it now stands may fail completely down the road.

                  • 6. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                    donjuancarlos

                    I am struggling with the designs as well.  Most of them are unusably ugly and only a couple make the text dark enough to provide easy-to-read screens.  Give us more choices Filemaker!

                    • 7. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                      marianco

                      It is not so much giving us more choices.  It is about giving us real theme tools.  Let us create our own themes.

                       

                      The current themes are old, flat, and just plain ugly. 

                       

                      As Steve Jobs said, the theme has to be lickable.  The current ones make you plain vomit.

                      • 8. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                        NickLightbody

                        Please don't feel I am being critical but I have to say that anyone making their living as a developer knows that delivering a software product is the art of the possible - suggesting that sophisticated stuff can be knocked up in a day suggests a degree of hopefulness which likely doesn't actually find any support in a real business environment :-)

                         

                        The new interface toolset is a major improvment and makes it possible to create really nice interfaces much more easily which display significantly faster over a WAN - I have no doubt that many enhancements - such as css editing etc - are waiting their time for approval and release and will appear in due course - but if you don't ship a product you don't get paid.

                         

                        To use another Job's quote - "Artists ship"

                         

                        In any case - which developer would put out all their goodies in the first new version of a major upgrade?

                         

                        So I am sorry but I think that Filemaker 12 is a great step forward and creates the foundation for some really exciting opportunities in much better looking software much more easily.

                        • 9. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                          fmp

                          How are the design tools "great" when in FMPA 12 I can no longer clone and constrain the movement of a field (Option-Shift-drag)?

                          • 10. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                            bnsonger47

                            Most of the themes do have a certain "look" about them. I guess they're a nice cross between what Windows fans might like and what Mac afficianados are used to. My only issue with the themes is that there should be some distinct list themes and form themes to account for the 3 pt. shift between the two popular views. Though I created my own for one theme style, this should have been done by FMI.

                             

                            I agree, the tools we've been given are a definite improvement over the old tools that had gotten "long in the tooth." I also think there's some room for maturity or growth here. A theme editor, or something similar, would be a nice compliment to the FMP Advanced version. Instead, it's a third party opportunity but not until FMI decides on what it wants for the future of it's implementation of CSS.

                             

                            Byron in Louisville, KY

                            • 11. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                              intex

                              Not only list themes are missing.

                               

                              There should be:

                               

                              • list themes
                              • table view themes
                              • print themes
                              • styles in the css for more objects

                               

                              There should be more object styles, not only tabs, fields, buttons and so. More objects should be:

                               

                              • Header 1, 2, 3
                              • Not active buttons
                              • Link texts
                              • Menu bar items
                              • help texts
                              • several box styles for normal boxes, shadowed boxes, highlight boxes, help boxes
                              • 12. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                                jgalt

                                How are the design tools "great" when in FMPA 12 I can no longer clone and constrain the movement of a field (Option-Shift-drag)?

                                 

                                What I should have said was, giving us new design tools (that are based on industry standards such as CSS) is "a great idea", but I agree, the current implementation is very very bad. Someone at FileMaker, Inc. really screwed up on this one. They did not resolve a lot of critical details and they obviously released it too early. Heads should roll!

                                • 13. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                                  pantarhei

                                  For the con/prosumer market, themes are a great concept. The consumer may well love one or the other of the ghastly, plain ugly or UI-wise hopeless templates for his or her recipes or home inventory.  But how many consumers buy FMP?

                                   

                                  A prosumer wants, methinks, more control & ”corporate identity” but won't/can't/shan't learn the arcane syntax of CSS.

                                   

                                  A typical FMP deveoper/consultant is, mefurtherthinks, either a pro of his or her particular professional field or a DB specialist. Either way, no interest in CSS.

                                   

                                  I am, in one of my other lives, sort of a programmer, but when I try to read & understand the CSS-templates of FMP I just stare at incomprehensible, arbitrary-looking sequences of nonsensical statements or instructions. There must be fine text books on the subject matter in general, but do they cover the (possible) special features of FMP?

                                   

                                  I have a couple of days left in my trial version; have to check whether creation of themes is covered in FMP Help. Based on my reading of these discussions, I don't think so.

                                   

                                  Designing layouts the old way would otherwise be fine, but they've removed at least one key feature, ie. cloning by Option-Shift-Drag, and in my (short) tests this is likely to double the development time in my typical (short-lived ad-hoc) solutions.

                                  • 14. Re: The new design tools are great but the new themes are pretty cheesy.
                                    Mike_Mitchell

                                    Slight correction: Cloning objects still works. It's just the constraining (using the Shift key) that doesn't any more.

                                     

                                    HTH

                                     

                                    Mike

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