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Colorless icons do have some merit though. You should always design your icons in a way that an outline is a good indicator and that a greyscale version works too. Relying on color to convey meaning is hostile towards the colorblind. I have had several users complain because we have used red and green lines to indicate correct and incorrect connections.



> Relying on color to convey meaning is hostile towards the colorblind

Making it equally hostile to everyone is not necessarily a better alternative.

It's possible to design colour schemes that are suitable for colourblind users. Going colourless is not the only solution.

> You should always design your icons in a way that an outline is a good indicator and that a greyscale version works too

Unfortunately designers don't always do this - even supposed design-centric stalwarts like Apple screw this up. The icons in the Mail app for macOS always make me end up spending a fraction of second figuring out which one is which (new mail vs get mail, and archive vs trash vs junk).


It doesn't need to be greyscale, colored monotone also works to help things stand-out without becoming too intricate.


It does not have to be, but it should gracefully degrade. Color should help but the outline/lightness should be sufficient.


Good point, but then perhaps the solution is some minimal theming? Good use of a menu item ;)


One reason I don't like to use alternative icon themes most of the time is that they rot easily. If the theme developer does not keep up with the application updates it will lack elements. Since themes are usually free or for a single low fee, this will happen probably as soon as the theme developer stops using the application.




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