4:18 PM

I have another question?

posted under , by Pinheiro | Edit This
This is supposed to be format CD/DVD etc... I know its not perfect but I'm a bit short on magical ideas for format, (or erase that also exists) and I have to do it before the week end so that the usability study can be launched still in good time, the study will test several different ideas for this icons...

This is format cd :) (I know I know its not obvious).

I have also made a new burn cd icon to put in the same test.

We had an icon for this action But i think this one is better, any way something to test also.


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Danni Coy said...

Rewritable disks in my experience have quite a distinct blue/grey colouration. If keeping with a desktop metaphor then something like an erasor on the disk. Since erasors often end up looking like blobs the type that you find on the back of a pencil might be best.

Either that or showing a disk part new and shiny and part with stuff on it with an arrow to indicate which way you are transitioning.

Or perhaps like the 1s and 0s example from yesterday but all zeros or one big 0

Pinheiro said...

@Danni Coy in mt experience erasers are incredible doggy visual elements that look like nothing. I wish I could use them in a meaningful way.

The 110101 turning to 0000 is interesting but I guess it wont work in smaller than 32x32 were we will only see a couple of numbers.

Andrew said...

Perhaps having 0 1 0 ... on the one side and clean disk on the other. I think this would stand up to miniaturisation. I also agree with the blue coluration comment.

Andrew said...

BTW I still can't help but think the whole idea of "burning" a CD/DVD is a little esoteric (even if it is not very familiar). Would people *not* as easily understand a pen metaphor for "writing" a CD/DVD.

Pressed for time this is a non-issue. Given time it would be nice to as a wider opinion.

Pinheiro said...

@ Andrew most cd recording aplications reference to burning, Example K3B stands for K "burn baby burn" ;).

Nero well its fire loving emperor :).
CDBurnerXP name says it all :)
Free Burner 5.0

I know it makes litle sence to joe user but is a well established metafore.

gamemank said...

Looks like k3b is just going to have lots of CDs lying around everywhere. With many icons like these next to each other, I think it will be hard to tell them apart by the emblems. I think you should focus more on the action (i.e. make the emblem bigger). The CDs do look beautiful though :)

Anonymous said...

the flame with the empty space in the middle looks somehow strange to me.

pvandewyngaerde said...

data is written in circles, beginning from the middle, and not like it is depicted here.

Javi said...

I would go with what Danni said, the pen eraser for erasing. And i'll add the pen front for writing.

Write/erase are more user friendly terms than burn/format.

The cd icon looks beautifull ^_^

Anonymous said...

Another idea.
Sponge with with small bubbles on top of CD/DVD can look quite well and is readable for all (in my opinion). Bits 01 also can be added on surface in haotic way.

Anonymous said...

I like too the sponge idea, in particular after nuno comment on eraser

Fabrice said...

format a CD means erase it. Then what about using a metaphor for the erase action like a rubber, broom combined with your icon ?

Concerning the fact to "burn" CD, we should reallystop to think about the ... burning part and thus use flames.

Burning a CD is writing data to it. So what about using a write metaphor ? ( pencil, data flow to the CD building tools like a hammer, ... ).

For example an audio CD : musical notes going inside the CD

data cd : file. directories, images, videos icons going in the CD

for an idea of the of the data flow: http://s3.amazonaws.com/pixmac-preview/000012122743.jpg


roger said...

Very nice drawing, but for me erasing a disk is very close to cleaning it from the old data, so anything like a rubber or a sponge with foam...

For the burning, why not drawing a laser which start the fire of the burning

Pinheiro said...

@roger the laser as one problem, comes from were? it will be sliced on the edge couse it must come from some ware... problems about icons is that they need to be self contained.

@ the sponge is a realy nice idea for errase, cool will try, for format I will keep this one..

Anonymous said...

Regarding the "burning" of CDs : why not have a laser beam and flames & smoke where it hits the disc ?

Note: the "burn" metaphor is very english-centric. In other languages, the words are not the same.

Pinheiro said...

After thinking a bit about the sponge and found a problem, its clean CD not erase CD, which is a dangerously similar.
The erase as the format should use the red color because its permanent and implies deletion.

I can see Joe user clicking the icon clean CD because he wanted it nice clean and sparkly. (never underestimate the stupidity)

Anonymous said...

>BTW I still can't help but think the whole idea of "burning" a CD/DVD is a little esoteric (even if it is not very familiar). Would people *not* as easily understand a pen metaphor for "writing" a CD/DVD.

>@ Andrew most cd recording aplications reference to burning, Example K3B stands for K "burn baby burn" ;).

I agree with Andrew,especially that if KDE is internationalized app. For example in Russian the metaphor "burn" is not so often used. I suppose the same is with other languages (at least Romanian)

shamaz said...

I know that in English you say that you "burn" CD. But in France we use another word which mean "engrave".

So for the French an icon with fire does not make any sense. And they would better understand something like this :

Maybe the same problem exist in other languages.
So, using 'fire' is an usability bug .
Using a pen would be a better idea.

Javier said...

ing process of a cd doesn't write data, it BURNS data XD
It's mentioned as burning, because lasers literally burn the data in the disc, so something to represent burning just makes sense, no need to sybolize writing.

As for the formatting, I like the icon, can't presonally come up with anything better so yeah :/

Fabrice said...

@Javier : you have the technical point of view ( a cd is burned by a laser ). We are not expressing the technical factor, the what the user intend to do.

The user don't want to burn a CD, and he don't care about the way the CD is done. What he wants is to write the data ( audio or whatever else ) to the CD. Now if the recorder burn, engrave, or summon the CD, he don't care. However if you tell to a user that the recorder will burn the CD, ... he will fear about his CD, and about putting fire in his house ...
- can you provide me a copy of your audio CD joe ,
- no way, it's too dangerous. Someone told me that the recorder was literally burning the CD. i don't want to put my house on fire.

Fabrice said...

And as said by shamaz, indeed in other languages we are not using the word burning. In France, it's engrave : "je vais graver un CD", and not "je vais brûler un CD". The same for the name of the application. So a fire ( or even a beam ) is completely meaningless.
On top of that, which color to use for the beam ? red ? blue ( cf blue-ray ) ?

risbac said...

I agree, "burn" is specific to some languages. I would instead use a pen or something meaning that you are writing on the CD.

And about the format thing, I would use a little broom maybe, like the icon you are using to empty a search field, or the "computer janitor" icon.

What about if the erase CD would be empty - just an outline?

James said...

I can imagine a window wiper thingy wiping over a cd changing from a dull grey to the shiny cd

Pinheiro said...

About burn, you guys are aware it is the metaphor used in 90% of the burning, software in the world.

I don't mind reinventing the wheel sometimes, but I'm not sure its a good idea to excape the industry methaphorical standard...+ the application icon is already a burning CD.

notriddle said...

Agree with the pen for writing CDs. Even in areas where the word "burn" is used, the pen has unmistakable meaning. In areas where "burn" is not common, the fire is easily mistakable (perhaps the idea is to destroy the disk, to keep the contents private?).

notriddle said...

Or for format. If we do go with a pen for write, how about use the exact same pen, but have the eraser facing the CD instead of the tip.

Fabrice said...

@Pinheiro : I didn't knew that english was spoken by 90% of the world ...
Sorry, but in France we never never use the word burn, but the word engrave instead. So flames on a CD s completly meaningless. People manage to use the software because next to the icon, we have "engrave" written.
Burn is english specific, and technical, as it talks about a low level information ( how the Cd is written ), and not about what you want to do ( write/copy my data on the CD )

Dave said...

Maybe if you switch the colors on the format icon, it would make more sense. In a few burning apps I've used, there's a tray icon that shows the burning process, which turns the CD from its original silvery state to another color (usually red or gold) in the clockwise fashion you depict here. So going backwards, it would make sense to have the CD go from gold to its oringal silver color.

Pinheiro said...

@Fabrice no I did not ment the language but the visual metaphore, the visual metaphore for trasfering data into a cd is in 90% of the apps fire related. The names of the apps are also 90% of the times fire related.

Fabrice said...

So what ?
1. most Cd recording application are done by english dev-> so they use burning metaphor

2. inertia : once one begin to use a metaphor, the others will follow. Especially if they are native english speaker ( cf point 1. )

3. 90% of the world is using Windows. Why do we bother using Linux or KDE ? Keep the same thing as others and the same concept ...

Pinheiro said...

@Fabrice "..application are done by english dev-> so they use burning metaphor..."

Nero for example is a German application

"once one begin to use a metaphor, the others will follow"
Yeap that is the reasoning for using those industry established metaphores

"90% of the world is using Windows. Why do we bother using Linux or KDE ? Keep the same thing as others and the same concept"

Being different for the sake of just being different doesn't make much sense.

damian said...

90 % the apps use burn methaphore but k3b doesn't have to look like them.
english speakers might find better the burn methaphore as they have seen it in all other apps but they would also understand a pen methaphore.
what would be the problem in making pen methapore icons , that would be good for everyone, instead of burn metaphore icons , that would only be 100% understandable for english speakers?
for example in argentina we use "grabar" that would be save, like save data on a cd.
PS:sorry for my english

nameless said...

The cd-burning icon is verry nice.

Anonymous said...

Well, in Québec, where we also speak french, it's not rare that we use "brûler un cd" meaning "burn a cd"... It's a bit exagerated to say that the "burning cd" metaphor is only meaningful for english people...

Fabrice said...

Quebec is a special case ... tabernacle !


Anonymous said...

>Pinheiro said...
>About burn, you guys are aware it is the metaphor used in 90% of the burning, software in the world.
>I don't mind reinventing the wheel sometimes, but I'm not sure its a good idea to excape the industry methaphorical standard...+ the application icon is already a burning CD.
I never found burn icon intuitive so making a better icon with 'engrave' or 'pen' meaning might be a good idea.

Pinheiro said...

In portuguese its "gravar" (engrave) and not "escrever" write a CD any way i will make an option to write witha pencil on a cd in the test so we can test that option aswell.

p-l.auclair said...

I've been thinking about it previous days and what I'm wondering is :

- Does the user really care what the color of the disc looks like ?

Basically the reasoning is that all discs (compact disc, digital versatile disc, blue ray disc) are discs. I think this should not be present anywhere since it's irrelevant.

People who burn different type of media will know what type of disc to enter per-size.

When I enter a disc in my computer, I really don't give a damned what its type is.

So I think in the end it's counter-productive to try to show different media types with the icon, it has no purpose.

Pinheiro said...

@p-l.auclair I have at times inserted a media in the computer to know what it was, yeah i dont tag all that much and I tend to prefer the unbranded cd/dvd's.
But the main reson herae for the difrent types of cd is that in K3B you can create difrent types of média, music data, video etc etc...
Also it does no harm making that visual distinction....

Damiga said...

For the erase icon, I suggest trying an upside down pencil with an eraser. Something like this:


Except with your skill of course.
And maybe show a portion of the DVD lighter.

usr said...

As I say for the K3b icon: The fire must be more realistic, seriously.

Anonymous said...

I don't like this, why does it have two different colors? Looks ugly.


Anonymous said...

maybe for your next icons you could tell everyone what you're thinking and people could respond with their ideas. When a concensus is met you could then mock up images? it might make more people happy and save you valuable time??

Just an idea? Could you see how it works for your next icons?

Anonymous said...

I'd say the first one, since
I think that from the second
you might get the idea that it
means burning something to
the disc.

usr said...

Anyway, I prefer the first icon.

Anonymous said...

Well, I advise that you replace that thing becoming golden with becoming white as a sheet of paper so to show that it s empty now

Anonymous said...

Oh I understand now what your first icon means, but they don't get formatted that way, they get burned from the inside to the outside.

Anonymous said...

I asked my friend who is a designer to make an icon according to the idea. This is what he gave me:

I think burning is well known as the process to put data in the CD/DVD. In Brazil we say "gravar" (record) instead of "escrever" (write). The format icon is awesome, but I think a little more speed effect in the red line formating the disc would make it more clear.

This is what I meant:
(Sorry about the lame skills)

You should put more fire in the flame. Add orange and blue to it so it will be a lot better

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Thats exactly what I was searching in this time...


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