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October 08, 2022, 01:10:08 am
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Author Topic: What is an outdated practice that you miss?  (Read 162 times)
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« on: September 20, 2022, 06:51:30 am »

Here is an example:

One thing I (kinda) miss is Skeuomorphism, the practice of making UI "Realistic". While I do get it can turn out ugly, but when it's done well it can look amazing.

Take Windows 7 for an example, while it's aero theme might have made it difficult to run on older computers it does look really good.

But at the same time I do understand why designers went away from this practice as it is a pain in the ass to design.

Are there some other outdated practices that you miss?
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« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2022, 10:25:41 am »

Oh, I love skeuomorphism too. One of my favorite examples of that is actually early iOS design, with its leather UI elements and physical-looking knobs.

But at the same time, I also like its predecessor: design that is not particularly meant to imitate a real life equivalent, but is simply abstract but in a way that has plasticity and sleekness. Particularly, things like late 90s desktop environments like CDE:

(Image description: Screenshot of a computer running the Common Desktop Environment, featuring a light pastel color scheme and engraving-like UI elements in a 3D-ish pixel artstyle)

Everything in that image has this three dimensional tangibility to it. It's like you could reach in and feel the rim of the windows! I love dithering, pixel perfect fonts without anti-aliasing, and all that jazz. I hate that today's design blurs the lines so much between background and foreground, and makes everything to flat, monotone and reductive. Even when they introduce color, I feel advertised to.

Just to please your skeuomorphism enthusiasm, I also miss UIs, especially video games, but also desktops, extravagantly themed to fit a setting:

Same with things like the Wii. Having Miis and Marios everywhere performing tasks like file copying, music in menus, little bits and blinkies here and there, really made things feel like you were at a playground more than using a corporate product, like the Switch sometimes feels in comparison. Video games like strategy games, various simulators, all of them used to have themed UI elements that really communicated some personality, that got substituted by random modern design (Humankind for example, a game I love but with comparatively bland [although usable] UI). With notable exceptions, like Europa Universalis or Anno for example.

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« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2022, 11:53:45 am »

~moved to life on the web

Im not sure I like calling something "outdated" since old or disused things are not necessary outdated!

I think too much information is hidden today in the quest for simplicity; hiding useful info is not simplification, it's dumbing down. I like to believe that people are smarter than they know, and it's better to give people power even if they don't fully understand it, rather than hiding things away to make life easier; it doesn't pay in the long run.

That and sound effects, EVERYTHING should have a sound effect !<o

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« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2022, 08:55:59 pm »

Using a mechanical drill (https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e4/Carpenter_at_work_on_Douglas_Dam%2C_Tennessee1a35241v.jpg) to dig holes in your appartement walls. Sure it's a pain and it requires force and technique, but it's nowhere near as noisy as an electrical drill. And having done hard work can be quite rewarding afterwards. To be honest, everything mechanical where we have an electric evolution now was a good practise, for simplicity.

Old UIs being animation-free for performance reasons. A window appears... immediately! Go, go, go! Using Windows 98 can be very fast and responsive for that reason. Netscape Navigator 9 (2008) has a little animation too, when all downloads are finished. A small window slides up... super scrappy and slow on my Windows 98 machine. Opera 12 was of course a much more modern browser too, had animations everywhere, that definetly cost performance on old hardware. From a functionality point of view, animations are mostly useless. And should always be an option to be configurable.

Linux anecdote: Animations also made LXDE inferior against XFCE, because on Lubuntu with LXDE, hiding the window while moving it wasn't possible. And that killed the graphical performance on some tiny Nvidia Vanta 16MB something, being built inside a P3. On XFCE, you could hide the contents of the window and only display it as a frame.
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« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2022, 09:30:13 pm »

Who doesn't love an old winamp skin. Great inspo source for the aesthetic too!


Skeumorphism is so interesting, Theres almost a level of genuinity to it. Im sure Baudrillard would have something to say about that!


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« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2022, 06:25:13 pm »

One thing that I will definitely miss is when games that were released generally were not able to be updated. I remember when I was a kid when I'd look up glitch videos for my DS games and do some wacky stuff in them. It sucks that games typically patch glitches now. I feel that games that add content later aren't as sophisticated as games that didn't have that ability and needed to be completed for release.
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« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2022, 07:33:27 pm »

One thing that I will definitely miss is when games that were released generally were not able to be updated.

same here! it meant that when a developer released a game, it had to be fully-functional and contain all intended content - there was simply no way around it. you could just buy a disc/cartridge, pop it in your console, and the game just worked instantly. no several-gigabyte day-one patches required, and content couldn't be cut out of the base game last-minute in order to make lazy, cash-grab DLCs.

games that require updates and patches to even be functional are also huge issues for media preservation. once a console's online store servers are taken down, all those physical copies of games that require day-one patches are now completely useless, even though they're physical and shouldn't require anything else in order to run.

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