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Re: "Why is emacs so square?"

From: Eli Zaretskii
Subject: Re: "Why is emacs so square?"
Date: Wed, 22 Apr 2020 19:55:30 +0300

> Cc: address@hidden
> From: Dmitry Gutov <address@hidden>
> Date: Wed, 22 Apr 2020 19:14:01 +0300
> On 22.04.2020 17:29, Eli Zaretskii wrote:
> >> It should be enough to change the name of the icons on the toolbar. No 
> >> need to take icons from GTK (if that means copying files into the Emacs 
> >> repo).
> > That would only help GTK users.
> Yes, indeed. But it's still probably the most popular toolkit among 
> GNU/Linux users.

And the icons look the same, no matter what distribution are we
talking about?  Doesn't something depend also on the desktop that's in
use, and perhaps also on the window manager?

> > I thought we wanted to improve the
> > Emacs appearance on more than just one toolkit,
> On e.g. Lucid all icons come from the same set, at least. We can improve 
> them as well (all together), but it's a fairly different task.
> Speaking of other platforms, I wonder if Windows and macOS also have 
> have standard sets of icons.

"Standard" as in "subject to change without notice" each time the
vendor decides to change the look-and-feel (which happens roughly
every 2 to 3 years).  And that's even before we solve the problem of
showing those "standard" icons in Emacs -- e.g., on Windows it is
customary to compile the icons into the binary, something that we
cannot do and then distribute the binary from the GNU FTP site.

> It would make our task easier (and the end result more native-looking) 
> if we could use a similar approach.

I'm not sure I like this direction.  It sounds like the opposite of
having an Emacs that looks more or less the same on all major
platforms.  How will the users (and newbies at that, since we are
talking about them primarily) be able to find their ways in Emacs, if
the icons change with the desktop/platform, and every few years even
on the same platform?  E.g., you buy the Emacs manual printed a year
or 2 ago, but the icons it shows are all different from what's on
display.  I don't even understand how will we be able to show the
icons in our Info manual, if the images don't come with Emacs and are
different on each platform/build.  Do we really want to go in that
direction? just to say we look "modern"?  Something people should
seriously think and make up their minds about before such decisions
are made, I guess.

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