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21. Re: Morning Consolidation Jan 9, 2012, 17:30 killer_roach
Beamer wrote on Jan 9, 2012, 16:28:
killer_roach wrote on Jan 9, 2012, 16:03:
Beamer wrote on Jan 9, 2012, 15:13:
Would love to have the ability to radically reskin a console's system UI, but, sadly, I doubt that would ever happen.

What would you do?

Not sure exactly, besides experiment... there's a lot of things that could be done to revamp console system UIs. I have some ideas that I'd like to see somebody try, some of which drawing from other device operating systems (in particular OS X and Android).

Two operating systems I'm not a big fan of. I'm not even 100% certain how I'd describe Android, given that it's so rare to see it without the manufacturer's incredibly ugly skin.
Of course, I think WP7 is fairly beautiful, so my opinion is probably questionable (beautiful on small screens, mind you, and when not gunked up with tiles that do not fit the aesthetics, as most 3rd parties fail to do.)

Part of what holds back console UI is the lack of understanding of what it will be viewed on. Will it be on a 60" 1080p display or a 22" CRT running 480i (how does this new Metro display look on that, speaking of?)

It's a curious exercise. I'd guess HDTV will be a going assumption next round and they'll cut support for CRTs, but we'll see. That will certainly open up possibilities. I'd love to see a keyboard included, too, turning consoles into something more akin to GoogleTV, but that doesn't seem likely (especially as GoogleTV is mostly a failure thus far.)

I've done a fair bit of work with AOSP (open-source Android), so I've got a bit of familiarity with that. Mostly wanting to incorporate the search functionality that it has into a console UI (even better if it was voice-activated like Google Voice Actions are, so you don't have to mess with a tediously slow soft keyboard - Microsoft seems to be moving in this direction with Kinect).

As far as Metro goes, I have been running the Windows 8 Developer Preview on my laptop - it's okay from a functional perspective, but it really loses a lot of its utility without touchscreen capabilities. Scales decently enough with resolution, though - 480i isn't too far removed from smartphone resolution (once interlaced), and, while I can't vouch for size per se, it looked pretty good on my 1080p laptop display. A lot of the Metro apps, due to their reliance on vector graphics for their interfaces, look gorgeous in HD - just a bit confusing to use because you don't have touchscreen available to you (which may be where Microsoft is looking at tablet interfaces for their next Xbox).
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