NOV
16
2005

Oxygen Icons Website Launched

David Vignoni, Kenneth Wimer and Nuno Pinheiro, 3 of KDE's finest artists, are very proud to present the Oxygen website, explaining what Oxygen is and the direction it is going in. Oxygen is the new icon theme being created for KDE4. Everything started in March 2005 when a bunch of KDE contributors met in Berlin to form the Appeal Project with the goal to promote KDE related projects and to push the open source desktop to another level. Oxygen aims to bring a modern, cool and very usable and consistent icon theme, in SVG format. In addition to high quality design, Oxygen also promotes technological innovation and increased usability by proposing new file interaction methods, animated effects and the intelligent use of SVGs.

Comments

> Please try hard to remain compatible to 'the other desktop'.

We will try hard to remain compatible when it comes to standards that actually make sense: like the icon naming specification, a common icon metaphor etc.

But like all other projects (Enlightenment, XFCE, Gnome, etc.) KDE will stick to its own style, its own color palette and its own visual identity.

Best Regards,
Torsten Rahn


By Torsten Rahn at Fri, 2005/11/18 - 6:00am

> We will try hard to remain compatible when it comes to standards that
> actually make sense: like the icon naming specification, a common icon metaphor etc.

Excellent, it's good to hear that.

> But like all other projects (Enlightenment, XFCE, Gnome, etc.) KDE will
> stick to its own style, its own color palette and its own visual identity.

I fully support this approach. May the schwartz be with you! :)


By Jakob Petsovits at Fri, 2005/11/18 - 6:00am

... and please use a different icon for internationalisation (locale.png) than Everaldo. I think the US flag is no longer a symbol for that.


By AC at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

The Esperanto-flag (Green background with a white star) would be nice as symbol for internationalisation!


By atrink at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

How about the UN flag ?


By Eduardo Alvarenga at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

I like both ideas. UN flag is also used in Mac OS X.


By David Vignoni at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

UN flag would raise some hackles in certain portions of the United States of America ;)

How about the Olympic flag? It's probably copyrighted or something, and honestly not quite ideal: too much association with sports. Still, I like the look better than the UN flag. Just sayin.


By jason at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

do klingons have a flag ?


By oliv at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

Yes, but it is oddly shaped to human eyes (a hexagon with very long sides on the upper right and upper left that results in a cut off teardrop shape). Similar to medieval war banners rather than the common rectangle flags that most governments have adopted.

How about a KDE flag? Blue with a white K on it?


By Evan "JabberWok... at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

"UN flag would raise some hackles in certain portions of the United States of America ;)"

But they would not have a clue about internationalization anyway, so why care?


By Morty at Fri, 2005/11/18 - 6:00am

Why not use the gay flag then. It has all the flag colors ;)


By carewolf at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

Hey guys, what happened with Everaldo and Crystal icons? Aren't his icons not good enough anymore for you or he does not commit anymore?

His icons were nice, and most importantly the license was a very permittive one without attaching any strings and royalities (not sure if it was BSD or LGPL). Ever since I have seen many apps using this icons, and even sites (especially control panels).

Here is posted the license polocy of Oxygen icons:
http://www.oxygen-icons.org/?page_id=4

Is Oxygen icon set planned to be released under license in the same spirit as Crystal was?


By Anton Velev at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

In the site it's clearly stated that the icons (SVG) will be released under a GNU License. LGPL or an equivalente license for graphics or icons.


By David Vignoni at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Still many apps and sites used Crystall icons. May be they were happy enough with PNGs.

My question is will this be possible with Oxygene?


By Anton Velev at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

the hole set will be lgpl or somthing that works in the same way, png's, svg's, documentation, you name it.
BTW and talking about site's any kde realated site is more than welkome to contact any of us in oxygen, we hope to help to create artwork, layouts, icons, logos, for all of kde not just the icons, or the desktop. Remeber Oxygen is not just an icon set.


By pinheiro at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

We are not doing an icon theme for websites but for KDE, so what webmaster will do is not very important for us. What we know is we will all the icons needed to KDE, this include apps (I mean the applications shipped with KDE).


By David Vignoni at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Re: pinheiro and David Vignoni

Thanks guys! So this icons (and themes) are really going to be avail to everyone, being it hobbyist contributor, commercial vendor or webmaster, good.

About the predcessor (Crystall), you may have not, but I have really seen this icons used not only in apps but also in website control panels (I think vdeck and plesk used exactly them). With your release their next versions will still be consistent with the UNIX desktop. You bet how important is millions of website owners to the user to familiarize with your icons, and you only can guess how easy and familiar will be to them when one day they see a running KDE! :)


By Anton Velev at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

this will very likely be the first time ever that i will use the standard icon theme! thumbs up! ;)


By fish at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Here, to the contrary, this would mean once again NOT using the default. This reminds me of the pre-crystal icons, altho they were better than the Gnome ones of the time. I'll stick with Crystal, thank-you very much.

Duncan


By Duncan at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

> This reminds me of the pre-crystal icons,
> altho they were better than the Gnome ones of the time.

Given that this is one of the most negative views and given that Oxygen is still in a very early stage (like crystal was back in that time) I guess that the Oxygen team is meant to take this as a complement ... ;-)


By Torsten Rahn at Fri, 2005/11/18 - 6:00am

Not bad at all, but I'm not seeing the 'oh wow!' that everyone else is. The folder icons look great, but the rest are a bit, well, plain. Maybe they're too flat? Don't know, and perhaps a screenshot with them would show them off better, but for now I like Nuvola, and probably Crystal better, though.


By Gábor Lehel at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Excellent Job David & Team!


By Mark Mahle at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Hi,

my hopes for the future of OSS are refreshed once again seeing this piece of work :)

One bigger nitpick:
With computers we already use analog measures for fonts, audio, time, etc. Please do so for icons, too. By using SVG instead of rastered pixmaps we can finally follow the route of free scaleable fonts (PS, TT) which is the way to go*. Please, please, take this into account. This would really rock.** ***

*There is even close to no difference between chinese characters and symbols from a certain POV ;)
**And widgets should follow the very same route. Let's control the window border size in mm, not pixel numbers.
***Once this is done there should be support for the perceived sizes. Looking at your pda, your monitor and a beamer projection results in different physical "display" sizes. But your perception might be the same as your distance to the display is different, too.

Thanks
Friedrich


By Friedrich at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Yes we will, that is the general idea, to make a fully svg theme. only one icon for all sizes. But also to vastly extend the svg features so that icons can starto interact with the uzer, in sum Oxigen is more than just an icon theme, itsa a second generation icon theme.


By pinheiro at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

imho the interaction idea rules :D

also the fact they will/might be dynamic, very cool. maybe you can make mouse-over animations?!?


By superstoned at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Still you speak in pixel sizes, like "The default size we would like for icon view is 128×128." or "All of the action icons are made in the 32×32 svg size and scaled to other sizes." (see http://www.oxygen-icons.org/?page_id=2)

128x128 pixels is different on a 19'' monitor with 1200x1024 from an 15'' with 1400x1024. You would choose the size of the icon based on the physical sizes, that is cm.

I think I understand that to gain less blur if rendered to the pixel grid in smaller sizes (-> less pixels) it is taken care to layout the shapes for this, so pixel numbers are still important. But they should not be the one we use to define the size finally rendered on the display.

Does SVG allow some kind of hinting? So details (like embedded symbols or shape lines) could be adjusted to match the pixel grid?

Friedrich


By Friedrich at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

:: Does SVG allow some kind of hinting? So details (like embedded symbols or shape lines) could be adjusted to match the pixel grid?

Yes... thus the "32x32 svg size". They can be rescaled to any size with all the nice look of a scaled vector image.


By Evan "JabberWok... at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

One even bigger nitpick:

"Analog measurements?" What the hell are you talking about?

Show me how any of the stuff you just described is "analog" in any way. It's all represented in binary at its lowest level.


By erg at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

Keep up the great work!

Thanks!


By Joergen Ramskov at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

While these icons in the previews are attractive. I wonder what will happen to Nuvola? Will David continue to maintain them or will they be superceded by the Oxygen icons? The folder and mimetype icons in the Oxygen preview doesn't look as sharp as Nuvola ones. Maybe a blending of the two?


By AC at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

They are the best icons I've ever seen. The perfect mix of colour, eye candy and easiness on the eyes. They're certainly not boring, but they're usable.


By segedunum at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Great work! as always
Only one thing, I saw people call the tango project crappy (joking I suppose) don't hear them, the tango project it's a good thing, and must be supported, just like oxygen it's needed in order to have complete themes for both DEs there, instead of duplicate icon themes in order to have a coherent desktop.
We could have finally (at the moment) two great Icon themes, that work out of the box in both envrionments


By ra1n at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

I still prefer everaldo's icons ( http://www.everaldo.com/ )... oxygens don't bring nothing new ... well, i'ts my opinion anyway :)


By Daniel Semblano at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Same here, I don't see why everbody is loving oxygen.
Nothing against it, but crystal seems much better to me.
Or this post have only atracted people who dislike crystal, or it's time for me to change the glasses ;)


By Iuri Fiedoruk at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Well Oxygen is nice and elegant and beautiful, for this reason they are loving it :)
Anyway, this doesn't mean they didn't find Crystal nice and elegant and beautiful as well, in fact this post isn't titled: "Do you like Oxygen more than Crystal?".


By David Vignoni at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

> Same here, I don't see why everbody is loving oxygen.

Probably because they are not so eye-distracting and "childish" as crystal (and XP) are?


By Davide Ferrari at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

I saw a picture of a 3.5" floppy disk grouped with their "action" icons. A set of action icons designed in 2005 shouldn't use a picture of a floppy disk to indicate "save". That makes as much sense as using a picture of a reel to reel tape or a punch card. There's a whole generation of computer users coming up who've never seen a floppy disk. We need a new metaphor for 'save'. I'm too old to come up with a good one though. We really should ask kids under 15 to 'draw a picture of what it means to save a file.'


By Scott at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Well, we still save to harddisk, so perhaps a harddisk would be a symbol that is not too far away from the floppy symbol, so comprehensible by "older" users and also not counter-intuitive for "younger" users.

Have a nice day!


By Nicolas Goutte at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

This is what Tango does right now, a harddisk with an arrow on it:
http://tango-project.org/static/cvs/tango-icon-theme/scalable/actions/do...
It's an experiment, but I think it works fairly well.


By Daniel Borgmann at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

How about an icon of a file cabinet, e.g. http://images.google.com/images?&q=file+cabinet

It would complement the icon of a folder commonly used for Open.

I agree, that more suggestions would be helpful (especially from people not biased by previous computer use.)


By jeremiah at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

Reminds me windows 3.1


By David at Sun, 2006/11/12 - 6:00am

Random fun fact: The Xbox version of GTA: San Andreas uses a floppy as a save symbol.


By Mikal at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

or even better: get rid of the save action... seriously!
but then, what's the icon for 'name document'?


By bangert at Sat, 2005/11/19 - 6:00am

Maybe I should see the whole picture, but I'm not convinced yet. In my opinion the icons bring less new than expected. Don't get me wrong, I thing those nice icons, but they're not as innovative as I hoped for. :)


By mOrPhie at Wed, 2005/11/16 - 6:00am

Since I'm only replying to people who say that Tango/Crystal/Whatever is better, I would like also to thanks all the people for the nice messages and interest, this was not really expected.


By David Vignoni at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

Don't make me laugh. Did you really expect no comment about something related to KDE 4? When you raise four fingers in our KDE world, you always discover a pirhana at each tip. :-D

By the way: Very nice work! I can hardly wait to have the whole set. (I'm tired of the Crystal icons.)

And, shouldn't the Oxygen icon theme remain "secret" until KDE 4's release? Now, these icons won't look so fresh and new in six months...


By Remi Villatel at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

No comment and more than 80 comments, 3,5GB traffic in 36 hours no :)
Also because it's just a preview, but that's good, it's incentivating.

About secretiveness, remember this is a preview, it may change a little or even a lot, folders for example are will sure been changed to scale down better, browser action may change as well. And in the end we ar just showing less than 5% of a complete theme.


By David Vignoni at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

Eh.

They're okay. I mean, they're nice. I don't understand some of the raging boners that some guys here have for these icons, e.g., "they're the most beautiful visual expressions of icon-oriented symbology ever have I laid my eyes upon, O Beautiful Icons, Blessed Art Thou ...", etc.

I think that's a good example of how KDE has a devoted fan base that, at times, can be one toe over the Line of Rational Thought, but hey, I get it, when you're passionate, you're passionate.

Overall, the icons are all right. Good job.


By Greg McClure at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

These look very nice.

So, the first question is: are the actual icons available somewhere?

The Oxygen theme appears to look more contemporary without the usability issues which I have complained about in the Crystal styles. So, they have done a good engineering job as well as good artwork. Since they look so good, perhaps they should be installed as HiColor which would solve various issues including the FD standard compliance.

I do wonder about the MIME type icon though. I think that the folded upper right corner is standard across many desktops and would be preferred. also, the shadows on the MIME type icons seem wrong for the standard light source over the viewers left shoulder.

I also wonder if some of them, while the look very nice in the large size, have too much detail and are too photo realistic to render well in 16x16 and 22x22.

22x22 suggests another issue: can we manage to switch to 24x24 (or just add it) in KDE-4? Other desktops use 24x24 and it creates real problems when optimizing an icon from the 128x128 px SVG.


By James Richard Tyrer at Thu, 2005/11/17 - 6:00am

> I do wonder about the MIME type icon though. I think that the folded upper right corner is standard across many desktops and would be preferred.

I also had this question. It looks as if the folding of a lower corner as opposed to an upper corner was done merely to be contrary, without an eye to why the upper corner is usually folded.

It seems that, by having the upper corner folded, the bottom is wider and flatter and appears to be the base of the icon. Thus, when in an icon-view in a file browser (the main place where mime-type icons are used), the text naming the file appears to be placed at the base of the icon. Also, as noted, the upper-corner-fold maintains cross-desktop consistency.

Of course, this may have already been addressed inside of the group working on these icons, but I wonder as to their reasoning.


By jameth at Fri, 2005/11/18 - 6:00am

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