Audacity Logo Redesign

Thanks for the response Steve! Happy to contribute!

A very similar logo exists in the same marketplace …

http://www.curioza.com/

By far the best proposed logo thus far. I think this, and a refreshed theme, could transform the brand entirely.

Trebor I do agree with you that there are similarities in form. I would argue that their waveform is more “medical”, similar to ECG or something for EMTs.

I’m not sure if you are familiar with Gestalt principles and how they correlate to graphic design, but I just don’t see it in the AAMS logo. I would recommend this read to get a good idea of gestalt principles in logo design: Exploring the Gestalt Principles of Design | Toptal®.

My Audacity logo proposal uses closure to create negative space that not only draws attention to the waveform but creates the letter “A”. Everything is up for interpretation, and this is certainly just my perspective but to me one says EMTs or medical services while my proposal is more effective in communicating a software program for recording and editing audio. I do appreciate your input and I may explore other iterations for the Audacity logo in the future. Thank you for taking the time to view my proposal and sharing your thoughts on my design!

Thank you Alectrocute! I appreciate the kind words. Working on theme designs. Focussing on icons and the toolbars at the moment. Still a work in progress still need to evaluate some things. I am just learning how to code but I would love to use this as a custom theme when finished.


I think the design of your Audacity logo is excellent,
but if something similar already exists in the same marketplace there could be brand confusion / litigation.

Hi there,

Even though there would be a natural resistance to change the logo, after all it is the project identity that was built along multiple years of hard work and continued usage of the logo in the current form, I believe we should unite as the users of the app and really propose good changes in UI, controls, buttons and maybe, even the splash screen which is small and timid.

The application in itself is really really good and it proved itself multiple times now that it helps all of its users around the globe.
In my mind, the question now is, how can we increase the usees base and the developers base? The answer (at leas to me) is the UI!

If we have a newer, fresher, and more modern UI that would spark a new interest of other users to avoid piracy and come to us to use Audacity.
We just need a new look and feel and your proposal is a great breath of fresh air in this direction!

  • Blender is popular because it has huge number of functionalities and its UI is beautiful.


  • Inkscape just revamped the theming options and will spark interest in a huge number of users (both new and old) to the app SOLELY because of the UI (not to mention hundreds of bug fixes as well, of course).


  • Gimp also benefitted largely on the dark, light, small, big, and huge button options

So all of the initiatives that push the project in this direction would be greatly benefitial.

QUESTION: is this only a high level proposal of new icons or is there a way I can use them inside of my Audacity 2.3.3 (or maybe 2.4.0?).
Super cool! Keep up the AWESOME work! GO go go!!

Thank you.
Victor

One of the primary considerations when thinking about developing the UI, is that it is built with WxWidgets (https://www.wxwidgets.org/).
WxWidgets has long had a reputation for making ugly UI’s, though much less ugly these days than back in the days of Windows XP.

WxWidgets was chosen in the very early days of Audacity (pre version 0.8) as the GUI toolkit because it was the only mature cross-platform toolkit to provide the features required by Audacity and also a guarantee of a permissible open source license. There are now tens of thousands of lines of code in Audacity that use Wx features.

There is speculation that Audacity may eventually move to an HTML5 UI, though that is likely to be years away.

Hi steve,

thank you for your answer. When you say that Audacity could move to HTML 5 UI… do you have any special framework or library in mind?

Are there any low hanging fruit tasks that designers could do to help the project move forward?

Thank you for your time.
Victor

Any move to HTML5 is a long way off, and any framework used is likely to be heavily modified to meet requirements. Many of the tools that will be required do not exist yet.

Good point. I completely agree with you, there coud be a path to ligitigation. If the concensus of the Audacity community was in favor of this redesign I would be more than happy to approach AAMS with a redesign proposal.

AAMS? What type of redesign proposal? What would be the scope of this?

Inkscape 1.0 was just released and they implemented a super cool new feature related to themes. If we could work on this (interface, skin, look and feel) on the audacity I believe it would help the project to become even more popular and even wider adopted. Just my 2c

Keep in mind that for cross-platform support, Audacity is built with wxWidgets. Theming the GUI in wxWidgets is not just a matter of designing some image files, it is much more complex. There is no such thing as “skins” in wxWidgets.

The current wxWidgets manual is here: wxWidgets: Documentation
Google search will bring up quite a few discussions about theme support in wx applications.

Hi steve, since you are the big boss of the project (or at least one of them), I need to ask you this: Is it ok if we discuss a way to make Audacity (alongside wxWidgets) themeable somehow?

The reason I am asking you this is because if you don’t like/approve/foster this type of discussions no one will waste their time thinking on ways/possibilities/icons or whatever and we will put this to sleep until it is time to start thinking about this. At least to make some discussions should be healthy in case this is authorized/approved.

Going to Google and searching for the terms “theme support wxwidgets” (in the search they were not in quotes, just putting them here in quotes so everybody knows exactly what I used).

The results that showed up were:

  1. Theming wxWidgets components (https://forums.wxwidgets.org/viewtopic.php?t=34742). Last answer was on 2012. wxWidgets 2.9.3

  2. can wxWidgets support skins? (https://forums.wxwidgets.org/viewtopic.php?t=4196). last answer was on 2005. (wxwidgets version being discussed is unknown)

  3. GUI themes/skins? (https://forums.wxwidgets.org/viewtopic.php?t=945) last answered on 2005. wxWidgets 2.6.0

  4. Help with the theme of a program (https://forums.wxwidgets.org/viewtopic.php?t=36877) last answer on 2013.

I read all of them and got most of what they were discussing (even though I don’t know how to code in C++).
It seems that the latest replies, at least in this small and quick research I did on Google, like you mentioned, took me to answers dated at least 7 years back. Which in the software world it is a lot. With that being said my questions are:

Q1) are those problems solved or are they still challenging to overcome?
Q2) Is it possible for us to change to GTK, Qt or an Electron app? What is the next natural path we can start discussing UI changes for audacity if we stick with wxWidgets?

Are there more people from the project we can talk to or is it only you steve?

Thank you.
Victor

:slight_smile: We don’t have bosses (big or small) in Audacity. We do have “roles” that certain people do, for example, one of my roles is administrator of this forum, and one of waxcylinder’s roles is main editor of the Audacity manual. Waxcylinder also helps out on the forum (and other things), and I also help out with the manual (and other things). It’s very much a matter of pitching in and helping where one can.


Absolutely OK.

My comment in the previous post was just for information. I think a lot of people imagine that theming Audacity can be done as simply as theming the old WinAmp player - just design some nice graphics and slice them up to skin the various interface elements. It’s actually a lot more complex than that.

Audacity does have some support for themes but it is quite limited. (Themes - Audacity Manual)



I agree.


Audacity has hundreds of thousands of lines of code. Many of them include wx code. Porting to a different toolkit would be a massive task.
Audacity does use GTK on Linux, via wxGTK.


Audacity is open source, which means that anyone can contribute to the project, or modify for their own needs. Other than myself, it is quite rare for Audacity developers to visit this forum. They are usually too busy doing code.

Hi steve, thank you for your quick reply.

So, do you think it is ok if I transport this thread to the dev mailing list just so we can get a clear comprehension on where are we (volunteers/designers/UX/UI people…) allowed to contribute? And how we can better contribute.

I believe that people do amazing mockups in the hope that they will be useful for the project but I think the time has come for us, volunteers, to understand what is the proper way to contribute to the UX/UI side of the project in a tangible way. People want to design a new interface, splash screen in a way that there is a chance it can be implemented in the real current project. :slight_smile:

Do we know all of the limitations of the wxWidgets library and how can we overcome them? Do you know if there any gains in theming capacity on newer versions of wxWidgets?

Thank you so much for your time.
Appreciate it.
Victor

There are two graphics that are currently required. Favicons for the Audacity wiki https://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/Audacity_Wiki_Home_Page and the Audacity alpha manual https://alphamanual.audacityteam.org/man/Main_Page and logos for the image in the top left corner. Currently these images are the same as in the Audacity release manual https://manual.audacityteam.org/

The graphics need to use the current Audacity logo.
The graphics need to be different on the three websites so that editors can see from the logo which document they are looking at.
The release manual will retain it’s current graphics.

Many of Audacity’s in-app graphics can be found here: https://github.com/audacity/audacity/tree/master/images

I remade an image you wanted to include on [u]https://manual.audacityteam.org/[/u]

I don’t know where to post it though to change it or send it to the devs. So I’m including it here:
ddwsiwg-4e2c16a2-8199-4284-ade8-0165e50d5c6c.png
I also have a SVG version of the full logo.
Can you give more in-depth info on how to contribute images to the project Steve?

Did you post the wrong image? That’s our current logo.

Hi steve, thank you for your endorsement in moving the UX/UI discussions forward then.

Is it ok then if we propose things like:

  • a splash screen (that the user can enable or disable)


  • a welcome screen (a different one than the one we have today)


  • and new interface? (buttons, and themes)


  • new organization of the interface? (moving things around)

Thanks!
Victor