Monday, October 27, 2008

Looking for a better look

If you launch the About program in the System drawer, you'll find my name listed among the "Translation" and "Artistry" voices. That's because I helped developing AROS' italian catalogs and modified many icons of the Gorilla theme, filling all the holes and creating the "Gorilla drawers" which were totally unavailable before. This icon set has its lovers, but it is often criticized by people, so I decided - while keeping my interest on Gorilla iconset - to look around for better options. I've been repeatly told about Ken's Icons, and so I decided to give 'em a try. They are very professionally drawn and double-state, which means that the active (=selected) icon is different from the "sleeping" one.

I've downloaded the latest version and unpacked them. I got many .info files but, in order to create a proper AROS icon set, I need to integrate them in AROS sources and compile the whole thing. There is a problem, however: in AROS sources, icons must be plain PNG images, which eventually become .info files during compilation. I must do this passage, because I haven't found yet a way to correctly edit def_#? files into AROS, and associate the icons after compilation would mean re-doing the same work every time I update AROS system files. Which is odd.

I renamed all .info files to .png changing names where needed, to meet Linux case sensitive requirements. I compiled the whole thing and... tah dah! I've got a "nightly build" with Ken's Icons (and some VmwAROS custom components like the boot screen and the "v41" muimaster.library: there's also a screenshot). However it is only a half success, since the active status has gone, and I don't know exactly why. I hope someone in the AROS devs department will help me figuring this out.

In the meanwhile, the best news is that I contacted Ken Lester, icons' author, and he not-only allowed me to use his icons, but kindly decided to contribute in the artistry side, by creating missing icons and complete the theme in order to fulfit VmwAROS needs. I can only thank him publicly for everything and hope that this effort will make our users happier.