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arielle @slimekat


Show me your favourite most beautifully ugly GUIs, From the clunky, to the bubbly and the weirdly overtextured.

Where’s the badass music player UI, the long forgotten Watched Too Much Hackers Linux desktop UI, the weird desktop buddies


@Gargron @slimekat hey, I used to make Winamp skins!

There was a particular category of them, where you just throw in a background image into a generator program and it added some 3d effects and buttons on top which were particularly ugly. I wonder if I can a picture up somewhere…

@kepstin @gargron I’m designing UI for a game thats looking to capture the feeling of using a computer from the time of winamps height

@slimekat @Gargron
Oh, wow, you can still download the thing, and they have screenshots:

@Sylvhem @theoutrider @slimekat I didn't even notice the little "buddy" that's trying to help out when I first posted this. I just remember using this terrible interface and wondering why, god, why.

@mdm @Sylvhem @slimekat turns out all of the early-2000s ~mainboard tuning utility~ UI designers never actually stopped working at mainboard manufacturers, they just did other things for a few years

@theoutrider @Sylvhem @slimekat And UEFI has given them untold amounts of free space to make even uglier interfaces with.

@mdm And it's not even a kind of monstrosity from the 90's. This thing is recent 😭.

@theoutrider @slimekat

@mdm @slimekat fuck I've only just noticed that they straight up nicked TransmissionBT's icon there

@Efi dang! I never got too much into it, just built the first room from the tutorial and looked at a few levels, but it's such a neat piece of software. Did you use the original or the fan-extended version?

@noiob I only had access to the original that came with the game! I had no Internet access! I did a lot with it, trying to expand the limits of what it could do, seeing what the biggest room size could be and making massive, impossible traps to run around in

@Efi Sweet!
I sometimes forget that when I got into Tomb Raider the game had been out for quite a while. I should totally check wether the editor runs on a modern computer

@noiob it should, although it may need a compatibility environment or perhaps a VM, but it should run well regardless (it ran fast on a Pentivm III)


How about unfinished websites?

@Tom @slimekat how can they release a skinned version of the MSI Afterburner, aren't they like, competitors?

@slimekat For just under a year, I worked on a tool called "the data pump" whose UI was designed by a math Ph.D. He used LessTif to do it. In 2004.

If you wanted to quit the program, and you had outstanding changes, the dialog window that it popped up asked "LOSE UNSAVED CHANGES?" It had a radio selector for yes and no, and an "execute" button. To save, you had to select the "no" radio selector and click "execute." Closing the window, picking yes, or making no selection quit without saving.

@slimekat This was the same software that provided an inline text area to let people write their own sort algorithms for doing complex data sorting. It accepted arbitrary perl code and made no attempt to detaint its input, which it ran as root, because the program ran as root on its hosts. When I asked him what his defense was against "for find unlink," his response was to tell my boss I wasn't a team player.

Good times.

@slimekat On the back end, his database was two fields: ID and DATA. DATA was an import of whatever Data::Dumper spat out, which prevented us from upgrading our OS because Dumper's serializing algorithms aren't consistent from version to version; they warn as much in their software. I suggested we should upgrade to Data::Serializer, perhaps, for compatibility. I got told maybe I should just stick to operating the tool, not trying to be a developer.

programmers bad

@literorrery I wanted to reply "AAAAAAAHHHH!" to each one of those toots. Oh my goodness, that was bad.

@slimekat I'd also very much recommend the toastytech GUI gallery if you haven't seen it before.


I'm totally guilty of being influenced by people in the movie Hackers designing their own desktops and have more or less done that as long as I can remember…

Have a shot of an #afterstep setup I did like 10 years ago. :P

@slimekat hey we've got this :awesome: compositing window manager, what can we do with it

@slimekat can I interest you in some classic firefox themes??

@slimekat the "dodge" effect is not as ostentatious but still totally impractical and yet it feels like your windows are trying to be accommodating

also note how the one window sort of disintegrates at the end here

@slimekat there was another one that made the window shatter like glass when you closed it but it seems not to be supported anymore and I can't find a video

@elomatreb @slimekat
CLI is great if you know exactly what you want to do
GUI if you don't know what to do
That GUI would work only if you know exactly what you want

@slimekat ah, I don't have any pictures but if you look up the Logixpro simulator it has a remarkably ugly gui

@slimekat thankfully, I haven't seen any of those in years ;u; <3

@slimekat oooooh i have a REALLY BAD piece of chromatography software you'd probably like

@sanspoint @slimekat Or the xmms plugin to let you use any of the k-jofol skins. 😄

I can't fathom why anyone would want to use it.

also the web app thingy every Hungarian university has to to use: Neptun
It runs on Windows Server and is made with ASP.NET and it's one of the major reasons I'll never trust people who use those.

@slimekat More Neptun shaming.
It does this stupid overlay thing while it's loading and uses fricking floating windows! What the hell were they thinking?

@slimekat Quote from the company that makes it (

"We aim to build ergonomic software solutions that help our users work quickly and efficiently on their daily tasks."

No comments.

@karyl i just realized the one i shared was a fake one for windows or linux or something. i shared a real one afterwards :)

@slimekat the first digital music player I used on Windows 95, including using a DOS debugger and hex editor to skip the shareware nag screen

@theoutrider @slimekat I think I played this one, but couldn't figure it our at age 6!

@Efi @slimekat I had similar problems, mostly down to not speaking English quite well enough, but I fucking loved the illusion of depth and complexity it got from the adventure game-y shenanigans

@slimekat This is Total Extreme Wrestling, a game with a fantastic premise and the clunkiest goddamn UI in the world.

@slimekat Basically anything for the early releases of the Enlightenment Linux WM.

Scroll down and let the awesomeness(...) soak in.

@BadWrongFun @slimekat iirc it had an option to draw @TheJare 's famous fire effect in the background of the UI, which i always thought was cool

@slimekat this is the map editor in Sword of Moonlight, the officially released SDK for making King's Field games. It's not so bad to use but they sure love embossed stone textures.

@slimekat I love this thread.

I think I'll contribute some dreadfully-colored UIs.

1. EnVision Publisher 2.0 for DOS, Rainbow color scheme. I actually used this.

2. Amiga Workbench 1.x - there's actually technical reasons for the colors (blue/orange works well with NTSC composite - green/magenta works too but is uglier), but the UI metrics just seem /wrong/, especially in an interlaced mode.

3. Acorn Arthur (I believe 1.2) - no technical reason for the color scheme there AFAIK.

@bhtooefr I was using Amiga OS 1.3 for at least 7 years. It was very usable & not ugly. You could choose your own colors from a 4096 palette

@mcscx Fair, but that's the default palette. (I also wasn't entirely fair to EnVision Publisher - that's not the default. But, that *is* how I remember it being set on the family computer...)

@slimekat I don't even know how, but this is from a git tutorial I found online somewhere just last year:

I had the "pleasure" of having to program fpga in Xilnix IDE
The old one

@slimekat does "all modern UI" count? ugly as can be: buttons look like nothing. text fields look like nothing. tabs look like nothing. menus look like hamburgers.

@penduin @slimekat I agree. Especially with the new Learning Management System we use at school, everything is a white void.