Yosemite hard to look at?

ScottishCaptain

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 4, 2008
872
474
I don't really know how to explain this, but is anyone else finding Yosemite extremely difficult to look at?

I'm not sure if it's the fonts, or the bright colours and lack of contrast, or what- but I can't stand using it for more then an hour at a time. My eyes feel incredibly strained afterwards, assuming I don't get a full blown headache. I have had no such problems under 10.8 (and I stare at the computer for well over 8 hours a day, with several short breaks in-between).

Don't get me wrong, I want to like Yosemite. I think there's some relevant stuff in there, and I like the idea of a flatter UI. I've just... Well, never experienced anything like this in the 20+ years I've been using computers (all the way from DOS to OS/2 Warp, BeOS, Solaris, AIX, various incarnations of Linux, Mac OS 7 to Mac OS X, and Windows 3.1 to Windows 7). I know some systems take a while to get used to and I'm fine with that, but every time I boot into Yosemite for a few hours I come away from it feeling like someone has been prodding my eyes with chopsticks or something.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm fairly certain that using a computer shouldn't be physically taxing?

-SC
 

markyr17

macrumors 65816
Apr 8, 2010
1,173
82
I personally haven't had the same experience, but it definitely seems odd...
 

JoEw

macrumors 68000
Nov 29, 2009
1,524
881
For me part of it is I have seen the same OSX look for over 5 years everyday for x hours. So moving to a pretty drastic change is gonna be hard for many, I think this is part of the reason Apple is having an open public beta and I assume there will be many changes based on complaints.
 

ErikGrim

macrumors 601
Jun 20, 2003
4,885
3,449
Brisbane, Australia
Completely opposite for me. Once you get over the novelty of the UI updates, it just fades back into the background just like you expect and OS to do.

* barring any visual bugs expected in a DP in any case.
 

Fimeg

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2013
150
4
I don't really know how to explain this, but is anyone else finding Yosemite extremely difficult to look at?

I'm not sure if it's the fonts, or the bright colours and lack of contrast, or what- but I can't stand using it for more then an hour at a time. My eyes feel incredibly strained afterwards, assuming I don't get a full blown headache. I have had no such problems under 10.8 (and I stare at the computer for well over 8 hours a day, with several short breaks in-between).

Don't get me wrong, I want to like Yosemite. I think there's some relevant stuff in there, and I like the idea of a flatter UI. I've just... Well, never experienced anything like this in the 20+ years I've been using computers (all the way from DOS to OS/2 Warp, BeOS, Solaris, AIX, various incarnations of Linux, Mac OS 7 to Mac OS X, and Windows 3.1 to Windows 7). I know some systems take a while to get used to and I'm fine with that, but every time I boot into Yosemite for a few hours I come away from it feeling like someone has been prodding my eyes with chopsticks or something.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm fairly certain that using a computer shouldn't be physically taxing?

-SC
I'm sure I know exactly what you mean! I can't stand it myself. I really do like the UI changes, I think they've easily simplified it for my customers (possibly too much, but that's another argument), and I'm sure that it will help with the intuitive learning for new converts.

However, I don't love to use the system. I have two machines, one with Yosemite and something just doesn't seem right. Like you, I spend at least 7-8 hours everyday staring at one screen or another, e.g., Windows XP-8.1, Linux both KDE and Gnome, and various Macs, Tablets and more. I don't think it's brightness because I don't mind KDE's plasma theme at all. My guess is that it's either contrasting colors, or too much transparency. I'm open to possibilities or speculation as to other causes.

Glad to know it's not just me.
 

zen

macrumors 68000
Jun 26, 2003
1,713
471
I haven't had headaches, but I did experience something which was a surprise to me - I like flat design, and have no problem with the Yosemite UI. I have Yosemite installed on my retina MBP, with my Mac mini (with Thunderbolt display) using Mavericks.

After using my MBP for a few hours, I shifted to my desktop. Immediately, Mavericks felt easier on the eye - not because of the brightness or colours, but because there was a tangible sensation of depth and solidity. Obviously Mavericks has the 3D dock, but also windows felt more solid and physical, and having multiple windows overlaid on each other felt like it had a distinct layering effect.

As I say, this was a surprise to me. I had no trouble using Yosemite and moving around in the UI, but Mavericks - in direct comparison - is definitely easier to look at.

Which brings to mind my primary concern about Yosemite (and iOS 7/8) - the flat UI design is following a trend, because Ive is a "designer designer", not a UI designer. Which means, when flat design becomes unfashionable again, I dare say OS X will get another UI refresh say for 10.12, which will bring some 3D elements back in.
 

matrix07

macrumors 603
Jun 24, 2010
5,472
2,158
This thread is interesting. Keep up the reporting folks. Personally I'm glad that they didn't go all out flat like in iOS 7, or make every icons candy color. I'm really intrigued by Dark Mode, and if it darkens the window then that might be the one I'll use.

I don't think transparency is suitable for OS design but we shall see.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,935
33,918
Boston
I'm not running Yosemite so all I can draw on are the screen shots. I will say that that the icons look nice for the most part (other then the Finder and the trash ;) ) but I agree the high color lack of contrast does appear to be something that will is not all that great for extended usage.
 

m4v3r1ck

macrumors 68020
Nov 2, 2011
2,341
355
The Netherlands
High Hopes for Dark Mode

I'm also still trying to adapt to the new color/brightness of the folders. I still have High Hopes for Dark Mode with dito color themes for folders etc. I also do hope 3rd party tweaks for the standard theme will come available. Fingers crossed...

~ Cheers
 
Last edited:

humar

macrumors 6502
Feb 17, 2012
397
7
Italy
Colors are good for my eyes. I just don't like how the new font looks on non-retina display, maybe fonts' lines are too thin for our "old" macs..
 

PsykX

macrumors 6502a
Sep 16, 2006
970
382
Never as hard as Pixelmator, but I do prefer the old fonts in Mavericks, and the window shades should be darker like in Mavericks. It's like there's too much whitespace now.
 

hugo525

macrumors member
Jun 22, 2009
32
2
I haven't had headaches, but I did experience something which was a surprise to me - I like flat design, and have no problem with the Yosemite UI. I have Yosemite installed on my retina MBP, with my Mac mini (with Thunderbolt display) using Mavericks.

After using my MBP for a few hours, I shifted to my desktop. Immediately, Mavericks felt easier on the eye - not because of the brightness or colours, but because there was a tangible sensation of depth and solidity. Obviously Mavericks has the 3D dock, but also windows felt more solid and physical, and having multiple windows overlaid on each other felt like it had a distinct layering effect.

As I say, this was a surprise to me. I had no trouble using Yosemite and moving around in the UI, but Mavericks - in direct comparison - is definitely easier to look at.

Which brings to mind my primary concern about Yosemite (and iOS 7/8) - the flat UI design is following a trend, because Ive is a "designer designer", not a UI designer. Which means, when flat design becomes unfashionable again, I dare say OS X will get another UI refresh say for 10.12, which will bring some 3D elements back in.
Couldn't agree more
 

jlsm511

macrumors 6502
Feb 26, 2008
342
80
KMIA
Its definitely a jarring transition, but just like iOS 7, I think subtle changes will occur over the DP builds to get to a much more easier to use and easier to look at UI.
 

weckart

macrumors 603
Nov 7, 2004
5,085
2,391
It's mainly the fonts for me. They look jagged on my iMac giving the effect of a cheap screen, which the iMac isn't at all. There are a few contrast issues with white backgrounds and barely contrasting greys on grey etc.

Unlike iOS, these should be easy totweak/ fix by the end user even if Apple doesn't get a clue before releasing Yosemite.
 

iGrouch

macrumors member
Jul 28, 2007
96
0
Off Ramp M50
I haven't had headaches, but I did experience something which was a surprise to me - I like flat design, and have no problem with the Yosemite UI. I have Yosemite installed on my retina MBP, with my Mac mini (with Thunderbolt display) using Mavericks.

After using my MBP for a few hours, I shifted to my desktop. Immediately, Mavericks felt easier on the eye - not because of the brightness or colours, but because there was a tangible sensation of depth and solidity. Obviously Mavericks has the 3D dock, but also windows felt more solid and physical, and having multiple windows overlaid on each other felt like it had a distinct layering effect.

As I say, this was a surprise to me. I had no trouble using Yosemite and moving around in the UI, but Mavericks - in direct comparison - is definitely easier to look at.

Which brings to mind my primary concern about Yosemite (and iOS 7/8) - the flat UI design is following a trend, because Ive is a "designer designer", not a UI designer. Which means, when flat design becomes unfashionable again, I dare say OS X will get another UI refresh say for 10.12, which will bring some 3D elements back in.
I was afraid to suggest this before, but I have to agree with you. No mater how good Ive has been at the industrial design side of things, without a good grounding in UI/UX design nobody is going to be able to match the refinement of 30 years of work with their own drastic interpretation. Sophisticated GUI design is a lot more complex and difficult to achieve than one thinks.

There is no evidence the Johnny Ive had much influence on UI until iO7. He made a fairly good attempt at the first iteration considering but I fear that given free reign he may not have the expertise to pull it off every time. At least if Steve Jobs was still around there may have been some checks and balances (some might say dictatorship) on the direction the of the design with exacting attention to detail.

Much of the design of Yosemite is refreshing but as mentioned it lacks the solidity of the previous versions mainly because of an overuse of transparency. I can understand the intention of Safari's title bar showing content scrolling up beneath it to suggest its existence. But the cons outweigh the pros in that it can become garishly distracting.

I won't make a final judgement on the new system font as it might be a finely tuned Helvetica but one on the worlds Font experts has state that Helvetica is not the ideal font for readability. I am not a font expert but I recognize badly rendered text when using Windows. My mind boggles why Microsoft can't get this and other UI things right.

Perhaps all the best designers in the world only do Appley things
 

coldjeanzzz

macrumors 6502a
Nov 4, 2012
655
17
Colors are good for my eyes. I just don't like how the new font looks on non-retina display, maybe fonts' lines are too thin for our "old" macs..
I haven't upgraded but from all the videos I've seen the font change has bugged me in some areas (not all). Specifically in the URL bar of Safari, I just don't like when it looks that thin. It should be darker and smoother like how Lucida Grande is. I hope they fix this over the course of the next few months.

Also don't like the back and forward buttons being separated or the color of the folders.
 

ErikGrim

macrumors 601
Jun 20, 2003
4,885
3,449
Brisbane, Australia
There is a visual bug in Safari with font smoothing on a non-retina display. When you first open it, fonts are sharp and crisp. But as soon as you start using it, it’s like font smoothing turns into a sludgy motion blur like stretch.
 

VacantPsalm

macrumors member
Sep 21, 2010
85
0
I've gotten a bit from both sides. After using it for a while, it does fade into the background nicely. I'll still stop and notice Safari's toolbar changing colors from scrolling every once in a while, but overall it's quite nice.


However, I also was getting a bit of fatigue from looking at it for a long while. Lots of white usually does that to me. Dark Mode is one of the reasons I want to wait for the next DP before I spend most of my time on that side of the partition. (Hopefully the next one has dark mode.)


PS: I'm on a retina Macbook Pro.
 

eastamherstbias

macrumors 6502
Mar 18, 2012
394
66
It is the font. There is not getting used to it. It is tiny and your eyes need to strain. I can never tell if I am connected to the internet because the strands so thin.
 
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