iTunes Custom Interface...why?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by stoid, Jul 17, 2004.

  1. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #1
    I've been wondering why Apple uses a different interface elements for iTunes, when they could certainly just use the regular OS elements. I first noticed this when using the trial version of ShapeShifter. It wouldn't change the iTunes interface. Today I noticed that the edge smoothing on the iTunes windows is non-existent.

    [​IMG]

    The top window is Finder, the middle is iTunes, and the lowest is Safari. If you look closely you can see that Finder and Safari have anti-aliased corners while iTunes has a straight pixelated bitmap like corner. I never noticed it before, but now that I do it's actually rather jarring. Like that squeaky mattress spring that you don't notice until someone points it out and then it keeps you from falling asleep.

    Why can't Apple just use their standard interface elements?
     
  2. Benjamin macrumors 6502a

    Benjamin

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #2
    Well same argument for qt, and every other application that apple has used a carbon resource file for GUI widgets. But yes quiet ironic that apple publishes a lot of GUI "suggestions" and yet follows little of them in their "custom GUI applcations". Mainly i think they do this just to differ their products from 3rd party, granted that 3rd parties can copy but just the fact that apple likes to keep a theme for their suit of home apps, much like they custom GUI the pro apps.
     
  3. stoid thread starter macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #3
    So it's because iTunes is still a Carbon app that it has a 'non-standard' interface. I'm not really a developer, but when you use the Interface Builder in XCode, can you make both Aqua and Brushed Metal interface elements?
     
  4. FlamDrag macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    Location:
    Western Hemisphere
    #4
    I agree, the iTMS is a mess.

    I don't necessarily care about using standard UI elements, but the visual language of the iTMS is so garbled it's not even funny.

    It's a fun project to tackle though. I've written my own critique and redesign of the iTMS UI for potential employers. There are so many different elements and problems to consider that it's quite a challenge.

    Sure they're the market leader; sure, they've sold 100 M songs, but I submit that they could be selling more and faster with some minor changes.
     
  5. Benjamin macrumors 6502a

    Benjamin

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #5
    Yep itunes is still a carbon resource, i guess if it aint broke.. etc etc... And yep in Interface Builder you can make either elemenets. Apple made that really easy kinda why i get tired of it.
     
  6. HexMonkey Administrator

    HexMonkey

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2004
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #6
    I don't think it's Carbon vs Cocoa, if you create a new Carbon file in Interface Builder and add a brushed metal window, it looks as it should.
    I think the problem's roots go back to the original version of iTunes. When it ran in OS 9, it had a brushed metal appearance and Mac OS X like controls (aqua scrollbars etc), instead of the OS 9 platinum appearance that most other Carbon applications had. These appearances weren't built into OS 9, so instead iTunes had to do it all itself. When it went to Mac OS X only, it still worked, despite being non-standard (note that iTunes still doesn't use nib (Interface Builder) files), so it was probably thought of as a waste of time/resources to standardise it.
     

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