I love the look of the skin … until … there’s dumb stuff like a left/right white/grey toggle switch for binary options like ‘enable subtitles’. Somebody needs to go back to UI school, that sort of mysticism just isn’t appropriate.
I wouldn’t call it “poor skin”, I would say it is simplistic and I have not changed it and happily use it everyday. But with >400,000 Users there will always be people using different skins and that is the freedom they can enjoy.
I actually think it’s a great skin, hence my frustration at a few (for me) deal-breakers (the on-off switches I mentioned). It’s a masterpiece of simplicity, but I recall Einstein’s “Everything should be as simple as possible … but no simpler”.
In trying to find a really elegant simple checkbox representation, it’s got too simple - so simple you can’t tell which side is off and which side is on without trying it! The sliders in the audio menu ought to be like the check boxes in the settings menu. Niggles aside, ceteris paribus, I prefer the OSMC skin to Confluence and will be changing back if/when these are fixed.
I agree, it was actually the skin that got me into OSMC, I extracted the skin from the repo and used it on my android device. In it’s current iteration I do find it some ways off from being fully usable. Mainly some bugs (seeing which items are selected in lists, library update overlay showing on video among others) which I presume will be ironed out.
But not regarding bugs, just looks: I think the skin now is a too dark, needs a bigger and lighter font, fanart background on the home screen.
All of these could be options on the skin settings page.
Except for these small adjustments I’d love for the home screen to be more dynamic - Hitcher’s ftv skin is the leading skin in this area, but this skin could go in a different direction, maybe more text based stuff (easier on the cpu(?)) - For example in the default submenu of the movies section, going down to year, waiting there for more than say 100 ms (so as not to trigger while scrolling through) would reveal a submenu below it with years in a horizontal menu - Allowing you to go directly to that year (or genre or whatever)
I generally like the OSMC skin but very much dislike the guide in the LiveTV section. I’ve never used kodi for LiveTV in the past so I don’t know how other skins handle the EPG but OSMC’s approach seems sorta clumsy. When pressing to the left, options pop up but the text overlaps the EPG which makes it very difficult to read.
Also, if it would be at all possible, can you add an option to return to the Favorites menu rather than the main menu after exiting an addon that was launched from the Favorites menu? Not sure if that’s possible in Kodi but it would save me a lot of clicks.
I have a good amount of experience with UI and UX as a user and a coder.
Without getting too involved (eg over my head) I will be using OSMC for a long time from now on and would feel guilty just slotting into ‘user’ territory.
I have plans soon to post a clear HowTo guide for users with no previous experience of OSMC (or RaspBMC) to allow them to get up and running with the minimum of fuss, stress and hassle.
I am using a RPi 1 Model B 512MB RAM however, I am sure the steps will be helpful for people installing OSMC onto other devices also hopefully.
This is my immediate plan to contribute however I will be mainly intending to help with the wiki and other HowTo guides as and when I can carry them out on my RPi 1 Model B.
The other thing I would like to assist with is the UI/UX primarily offering vital feedback for the skin initially from not only a user point of view but also from a dev point of view.
Open Source should be just that, unfortunately a lot of users just aren’t willing or able to help and some users just end up frustrated when things don’t work easily.
My best advice for all the tireless devs working for free on OSMC is to go onto amazon and order the book Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krugg. It is mainly regarding websites however when it comes to UI/UX the same basic principle still applies… the users will always say ‘Don’t Make Me Think!’