[kde-artists] Icon Naming: animations/process-working, & animations/process-idle

James Richard Tyrer tyrerj at acm.org
Fri Jul 6 10:02:24 PDT 2007

Rodney Dawes wrote:
> On Fri, 2007-07-06 at 07:57 -0700, James Richard Tyrer wrote:

>> Unfortunately, KDE doesn't fit with either of these.  That is, KDE 
>> doesn't have an idle image.  It cycles through all of the images in
>> the PNG.  So, we are going to have to change something in the code
>> either way. :-(  However, I think that it would be easiest to 
>> conform to the current GNOME system with a separate icon for idle 
>> since this would make the: "process-working" icon the same as our 
>> current icon, and we wouldn't have to use the "process-idle" icon.
> Uh. KDE fits perfectly with the specification's way of doing it, 
> already. It doesn't have a separate idle image.

That appears to be what isn't clear.  KDE doesn't have an idle image the
way Firefox does.  It isn't a question of whether it is a separate PNG
file, there is no idle image in KDE as there is in Firefox.

> Fixing the behavior in GNOME is a simple matter of a few fairly 
> simple patches,

Yes, that is because what the code does will remain the same, only the
way it reads the image(s) needs to be changed.  However, with KDE, what
the code does will need to be changed.  It might not be very difficult
to do.

> as there are multiple spinner widgets in use. Nautilus and Epiphany 
> are the ones that stand out in my mind right now, but there may be 
> others as well. As far as KDE is concerned, I don't know what the 
> code looks like exactly, but as I was looking through the images to 
> see how it works, I found just the one multi-frame PNG image for the
>  animation.

Yes, a multi-frame PNG which doesn't have an idle image.

> I really don't understand why you would suggest making the 
> implementation mimic the current GNOME code, and then state you 
> wouldn't need the process-idle icon. That's highly contradictory. If
>  you don't want to show anything for the idle state, then KDE needs
> to do nothing, except to use "process-working" rather than the
> current icon name, as you claim KDE is already showing no image for
> idle state.

{I had a feeling that I should have provided a longer explanation.}

KDE isn't showing no image for the idle state.  KDE doesn't use an idle
image.  It has a continuous loop of equally spaced images and it appears
to show the first image when idle -- but this is not the same as having
an idle state image (like Firefox has) that isn't part of the animation
sequence.  See attached: "process-working-kde.png".

However, Firefox uses a separate idle image which is _not_ part of the
animation loop.  See attached "process-working.png" &
"process-idle.png", which follow the Firefox style.

Now, if I make a: "process-idle-kde.png" which is just the first frame
of "process-working-kde.png", these icons will work with either the
current GNOME system or the current KDE system.  The only small issue is
that KDE will never show the idle image from the Firefox style set.
However, the KDE icons will work fine on current GNOME.

However if we follow what the spec says:

"The first frame of the animation should be used for the resting state
of the animation."

This should mean that when in the resting state that the first frame
would be displayed and when working that frames 2 through N would be
displayed in sequence -- that is where the problem comes from: 2 through
N rather than 1 through N.  So, we would need to combine the two Firefox
style PNGs -- add the idle image as frame 0.  If this were displayed
with the current KDE code, this would cycle all N+1 frames and the idle
frame would be displayed between each rotation.  OTOH, if the existing
KDE PNG was displayed on code using the new system, one of the frames
would be skipped (a cycle would be 2 through N) which would cause a
jerk.  Yes, I tried it and it is quite noticeable.

So, as I said, the current GNOME system of using a separate PNG file for
a separate idle frame and the KDE system of not having an idle frame are
basically compatible with each other, but the system in the spec will
require changes to both the KDE icon and the KDE code as well as the 
GNOME code and icon.  And, therefore, it is basically compatible with 
all of the numerous icon sets which exist (if they are renamed) since 
all that is needed is a HiColor icon: "process-idle" that is a blank 
transparent PNG for apps that need the idle frame to fall back to.


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