[LAD] User eXperience in Linux Audio

Gianfranco Ceccolini gianfranco at portalmod.com.br
Thu Apr 23 10:01:53 UTC 2015

Hi eveyone

Although I normally refrain from entering this kind of discussions, I just
can help myself from entering this particular one :-)

I think that the point that most of us are missing is that, prior to decide
the features on a particular product (a software in the discussed cases),
one needs to decide THE TARGET AUDIENCE of such product.

I see myself dealing with this issue daily when working with the MOD and I
imagine that any other product, be it gratis or paid, free or non-free,
hardware or software, is no different in this issue.

I personally believe that there is no such thing as "the perfect globally
accepted set of features" but only the ones that are accepted by a
particular group of users and thus the need to define the target audience
before deciding on the features.

That said, I think that eveyone is right in their arguments and the lack of
concordance comes from the fact that each one is considering a different
target audience.

Computer users (and Linux users also for that matter) can be spread over an
extensive spectrum that stretches from the "80 column monocolor terminal
lover" to the "keyoard hater" and will surely disagree on whats is a good
and what is a bad designed software in terms of user experience  - the
thing actually working or not is a totally different matter.

Best wishes to everyone.

Gianfranco Ceccolini
The MOD Team

2015-04-23 7:47 GMT+02:00 Thijs van severen <thijsvanseveren at gmail.com>:

> Op 23-apr.-2015 00:14 schreef "Fons Adriaensen" <fons at linuxaudio.org>:
> >
> > On Wed, Apr 22, 2015 at 08:43:11AM -0400, Paul Davis wrote:
> >
> > > Just one little note here. Back in 2001, I read an article in the US
> > > Keyboard magazine that made a strong case for stopping the use of
> > > skuomorphic GUIs (knobs etc) for a variety of reasons. It wasn't
> written by
> > > a software developer, but a musician. He was bemoaning how limited
> GUIs for
> > > audio software were because of their attempt to present things that
> look
> > > like hardware controls.
> >
> > There are different grades of that of course. Chickenheads, screws,
> > handles and ventilation holes in a plugin GUI just look silly IMHO.
> > But an 'abstracted' version of a rotary control can make sense, it
> > has some advantages over most alternatives.
> >
> > On the other extreme, I find the 'standard' widgets offered by
> > most GUI toolkits completely useless on anything that is supposed
> > to be 'technical' (including audio apps) rather than an office
> > application.
> >
> > People writing 'GUI standards' and trying to force them on everyone
> > should have a look at e.g. a modern 'glass cockpit'.
> We are not talking about someone that suddenly decided to make up there
> own set rules and then tried to fore it upon us
> We are talking about a group of people that conducted a study on a large
> group of random users, and based on that study they defined a set of
> guidelines for us to use ... or ignore
> #freedom :-)
> I mean the real
> > thing - Boeing or Airbus, not the Garmin etc. thingies used by sports
> > pilots that look like (and probabaly are) Windows apps.
> >
> > This is a very complex environment. A large amount of information,
> > often competing for attention, has to be displayed accurately and
> > unambiguously, in a way that is comfortable to be viewed for hours
> > on end, and that also remains functional in emergency situations
> > that may require split-second decisions. A lot of research and
> > effort has gone into designing these things.
> >
> > You won't find a single 'standard' widget on those displays. Nor
> > skeuomorphic imitations of traditional flight instruments. The
> > only thing that still looks a bit traditional would be the attitude
> > indicator on the PFD, but even that will be a very abstract version
> > of the old mechanical one.
> >
> > All of it is designed to be purely functional, no frills, no eye-
> > candy. Even the MCDUs (the things on the central console that look
> > like a calculator on steroids) have their own interface style and
> > conventions that will be quite different from what you may expect.
> >
> > And that's not because this is a primitive, conservative, or 'ten
> > years behind the state of the art' technology - these systems are
> > among the most advanced you can find anywhere.
> >
> > The same, but probably less extreme, you'll find in almost all
> > 'technical' environments where function is more important than
> > looks or tradition.
> >
> >
> > Ciao,
> >
> > --
> > FA
> >
> > A world of exhaustive, reliable metadata would be an utopia.
> > It's also a pipe-dream, founded on self-delusion, nerd hubris
> > and hysterically inflated market opportunities. (Cory Doctorow)
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Linux-audio-dev mailing list
> > Linux-audio-dev at lists.linuxaudio.org
> > http://lists.linuxaudio.org/listinfo/linux-audio-dev
> _______________________________________________
> Linux-audio-dev mailing list
> Linux-audio-dev at lists.linuxaudio.org
> http://lists.linuxaudio.org/listinfo/linux-audio-dev
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