My life was thrown off balance and I never regained my footing after that day, because I lost my ability to respect. An essential part of being human is to feel respect for those who may or may not be deserving of it. But it is equally human to feel painful disillusionment when someone or something you respected turns out to be much less than you thought. But the level of betrayal I felt when Microsoft announced their new VSCode icon tore something from me that I'll never be able to recover. They tore away my ability to respect anything, and they tore away my ability to feel human.
Microsoft was a company I respected, and their employees were people I looked up to. Visual Studio, SQL Server, MS Office were all quality software products that combined user friendliness with powerful features. These programs may have been mass-market-oriented at times, but deep down they were always sophisticated and crafted with a level of detail and skill that won appreciation from power users all across the internet. VSCode was their newest release, and the internet was in unanimous agreement that it was of unparallelled quality. Following it's long awaited release, Microsoft began releasing quality updates that raised the bar ever higher for text editors.
Then 1.17 was announced. This was not just an announcement of an update, it was announcement of Microsoft's suicide. It was an update intended to completely disregard any design principle, and instead shock the entire world with its lunacy. Microsoft had gone off the deep end and raised the middle finger to everybody who stayed loyal to them. They had announced that they didn't care anymore, that they didn't care for their community, and they were going to go out of their way to sabotage everything they had spent years creating.
The pain I felt from this betrayal has destroyed me on an emotional level, and has deprived me of my primary source of entertainment. No longer can I use text editors without remembering the day I ceased mattering to people I devoted myself to. Microsoft had not just destroyed me or their company, they had destroyed the one force of stability in the world: Trust.
One thing I've learned as a developer is that for most users, colors probably matter more than anything else. You can build software that flies to the moon, but if it looks like a terminal shell aka "scary black window" as my wife calls it, it probably won't be a mainstream fav.
> aka "scary black window" as my wife calls it
One day, the head accountant, who was also the owner's wife walked into the room to ask me a question. Busted. I was totally slacking, playing Angband full screen on my Mac. It looked something roughly like this:
She said, "Oh, I can see you're busy working on something complicated." The poor lady didn't even realize it was a game. Thanks, retro ASCII art graphics!
That's why I hate the current trend of a) removing icons and b) make the remaining icons monochromatic!
Every time I have to open the Android settings app on my phone I am wondering how that decision passed any usability test. Or press the Hamburger menu in mobile Chrome on Android... Every single time I want to search something on a webpage I have to read half the entries. Just give me a blob of unique color to identify the most important functions at a glance without reading!
I use Sublime for quick-and-dirty tasks/editing large files, but VS Code when I'm on a project. With the icons nearly identical I kept accidentally opening the wrong program.
It's such a small, stupid thing but kept impeding my workflow.
>Changing from orange to blue doesn't address all of the issues, however it is a step forward.
Just what I need the the next time I feel like I'm losing forward momentum.
Now, a few weeks later, turns out my users had statistically doubled, a few "outspoken people" (in fact just a previously-satisfied customer with an obscure technical problem) had hurt my fragile fragile mind.
And oddly enough, sometimes there is someone who really does get hurt very badly because of a small change like an icon. The world is weird, people are weird, software is weird.
My answer to that remains
Anyhow, thanks for expanding my urban vocabulary dictionary this morning.
In fairness to the outcries, I still miss Outlook's Gold icon. More than once have opened Outlook / Word when I meant the other.
I must admit being a little thrown when I upgraded VS Code a week ago and suddenly noticed the very different icon. I immediately thought "Ugh, I like the old icon better". But by the end of the day, I was actually struggling to remember that the old icon actually looked like. I was thinking "I know it was dark blue, but what WAS it actually again???"
Just goes to show that at least in THIS old programmers mind, I rely on colour matching far more than shapes to navigate to important apps that I use...