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Discussion: Classic Skin Development Direction

by BEN GOODGER | Over the past few weeks, Classic skin development has really taken off and the Classic skin is, I believe something that can be used every day, on all three platforms.

I recently posted to the n.p.m.ui newsgroup soliciting feedback on the development. I want to reach a broader audience so I'm asking mozillaZine readership the same questions...

  1. What role should the Classic Skin take in Mozilla?
    I've heard people define two general roles for the Classic skin.

    • is that of a 4.x clone, matching the look of the Netscape predecessor as much as possible. The point is to demonstrate the 'power of skins' - you can create a browser that looks native like 4.x

    • is that it should attempt to be a contemporary (but still familiar) native-look front end. Designed to be something new, and distinct from 4.x (with the obvious exception of the icons, which we're stuck with for now), the intent is to create a new native looking app.

    Should the Classic skin indulge itself in stylistic differences like the Aqua-style striped toolbar background in the Mac version and so forth while still adhering as closely as possible to the original design goals of familiarity and respect for system settings?

    My personal opinion is for the latter - I do most of the development on the Windows version and my intent has been to create something that looks like a cool new Windows app, but I'm interested to hear what people think. Given "cool" and "new", is "Classic" even a good name?

  2. How are we doing?
    What do you like or dislike about the Classic skin today (Today being M18 tip, not M17, as significant changes landed after the M17 branch). If you can pinpoint exact issues, help us quantify our work by filing bugs.

Thanks for your feedback,
Ben Goodger <ben@netscape.com>
mozilla UI module owner

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