MediaMan Community MediaMan Forum
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Keep changing design style? good or bad? By: DancingDisc Date: March 27, 2010
Hi Sheming,
The 3.1 new design looks fancy. I can see you've put lots of effort for this completely new design. Thank you.
JMHO: But I really do not understand why the design style changes so dramatically compared with 3.0. As I remember the change of style occurred one time from 2.7x to 3.0, which caused some troubles for lots of users. For me, V3.0 design looks pretty good already and I've already got used to this version. I'd like to see other functions to be improved but interface should keep somewhat similar looking (e.g V3.0).
I can not imagine what users' reaction would be if MS Word or Excel keeps changing its basic appearance from version to version. At least as a commercial software, I think it should keep its basic design style and focus more on other functions.

Thank you for your dedication to making this software better.


Re: Keep changing design style? good or bad? By: He.Shiming Date: March 27, 2010
In my opinion, constantly changing design is bad.

That's the short version of the answer. The long version could take weeks to explain. But in a nutshell, the drastic change from version 3.0 is mostly because of:
1. feedbacks from v3.0 customers
2. technology improved
3. some other factors from my experience with this project

I've seen many projects, especially shareware products that never evolved or evolved in the wrong direction. I'd love to keep MediaMan the way it was as version 1.0, but I don't want to be just one of them. MediaMan is like a kid of mine, of course I'd love to see it sharp and shiny, despite of the hard work.

I would say version 1.x through 2.x are mostly about development of functions people need. The plan of version 3.0 was when I first started actually thinking about user experience, workflows, how people are using it and what do they expect. So as you see, areas such as Import are completely reworked. It's not exactly a UI change, but a workflow change for the users. Nonetheless, from feedbacks, I'm also seeing tons of areas to improve.

As for the planning of 3.1, I've got enough experience to create just anything I wanted. We have great open source projects such as Chromium, and skia, and boost to use or reference. As a result, V3.1 is better than any previous version in many ways. Compared to the change behind, the interface change is actually smaller. And most ideas are still based on the workflow improvement ones of 3.0, only better.

I would also like to point out that there are famous products going through drastic changes. The Office product you mentioned, actually experienced a pretty major UI change in version 2007, with the introduction of "Ribbon UI". And the Opera browser, as I recall, experienced at least 4 major UI changes. To some of the current users, any change could be bad. That's why we'll have to work harder. But you can see the desire of the designers and developers. They are working hard on it, so that we could relax and trust them.

Thanks for you opinions. They are very important towards designing. Let me know if you thought about other things that may harm current users.