Add some color to Visual Studio 2012
Usability studies have shown that both shape and color help to distinguis visual elements in a UI. The upcoming/current beta release of Visual Studio 2011 has removed color from the toolbars and from icons in e.g. the Solution Explorer.
Please make this optional so those of us that want a more accessible and user friendly IDE can have their cake and eat it too.
Please make more Color the the Visual Studio 2012. We must work with that black and white Studio. Colors help to find faster items. I don't know what Microsoft think about colors? Please give me my Color back!
I hate the chrome of the new Visual studio 2012. All toolbar icons are bitonal. Just blank and while not even grey shades in them and are tiny. I am having a hard time finding toolbar buttons. It look like i am back in early 1980s with bitonal computer screens. But this one is even worse than that. PLEASE BRING COLORS BACK!
revert to a more colorful theme so that screen elements are more easily differerentiated
Please bring back the colors in Solution Explorer. I am back to reading the words instead of quickly looking at the icons.
Have the UI designers of VS 2012 lost thier mind. Guys look at the UI, it looks so medicore that it seems older version than Visual Studio 1.1. I think VS 1.1 look and fill was better than VS 2012. Look at UI 2010. It was one of the best UI look and fill. How come quality of UI design degrades so sharply. I think designers of VS 2012 have lost theirs eyes. Folks go back to drawing board please.
Why microsoft is leaving the colorfull world? Some of the MS beauti doesnot require to change. You are making developer life so difficult with new IDE color theme.(I am sorry Black and white theme as there is no color.).
The User interface of VS2012 is ungly and black and white. Icons colors,location of toolbars all looks ungly.
I know in general if you want to teach someone color and picture is the best way to teach. but after seeing UI of VS2012 its hard to teach. I am feeling like I am a color blind.
Please do not change the nature.
I would like to add my voice to the list of those asking for color, at least as an option, to be brought back to Visual Studio. I understand the usability arguments that Microsoft is making, but it seems to me that you are overlooking one very important consideration. Many of us use autohide to solve this problem. Therefore, when we go into Solution Explorer (for example), we want our focus there, and the color schemes help us more quickly find what we need. Then, as soon as we click out of there, it is hidden and therefore cannot possibly distract us. Please don’t take this option away.
RC from Beta has a minor improvement, but its not enought!
The coloring is really almost not noticable, the problem was not with the status bar coloring, but with the items in the solution explorer and the ToolBox menu, and toolbars.
even in RC the files are not easily recognised!
and the all CAPS in the menu is really like watching Clipper from 1980 all over again!
guys please reconsider, METRO Style is NOT for an IDE developing tool!
you are making our lifes ******, and eventually we will stop folowing the .NET.
PLEASE!!!!!! Switch to a sane color scheme who ever had the idea to remove colors and contrast have him tared and feathered!!!
and sent to Siberia!
this color schema is painfull to look at and debilitating..
it will reduce productivity and programmers will to live!
even cats and dogs would complain and they only see a few more cholors the monocrome...
the human eye in contrast can see as much as 10 milion colors why should we be limited to gray scale?!!
I wont be upgrading my visual studio 10 if these colors remain that a absolute iron hard fact...
If your adding a theme editor to it and this is your way of forcing the comunity to find the optimal color theme by giving them a kick in the @$$ then by all means... but i seriously hope your not expecting anyone to work like this...
that would be insanity!
Removing color from icons and symbols in Visual Studio is a step in the wrong direction. What is the use of icons and symbols? They have to make functions recognizable. The more icons you have the more they have to be well recognizable.
Another aspect: the use of color makes Visual Studio friendlier. The actual beta looks gloomy and sad
Updated Status: 7/2/2013
Thanks to everyone who voted and commented on this issue. Visual Studio 2013 has increased color and contrast use within the user interface while continuing to focus on giving the content you are creating and editing visual prominence. We’ve utilized the feedback you gave us to help refine our approach to color and contrast within three main areas: 1) we added color to icons and reduced line weights to improve icon scan-ability and to better communicate icon meaning and categorization; 2) we added line work and raised contrast levels to increase visual separation between screen regions; 3) we included a built-in “Blue” theme option at product first launch to better support user choice.
In keeping with these three areas we have made many changes to the Visual Studio 2013 built-in themes. In high utilization and icon intensive areas of the product, such as common toolbar actions and code hierarchy elements, we refined the color and/or line weight of over 1,000 commonly used icons resulting in color being applied to ~80% of standard and debug toolbar icons, ~75% of code hierarchy icons, and 100% of active notifications. In both the Light and Dark themes we increased contrast levels and introduced more border line work to better highlight the edges of content areas such as input fields, tool window borders, active selection states, etc. We also introduced the ability to choose the theme that best meets your preferences and work environment needs as a part of the product first launch experience.
Many of the changes we’ve made are subtle in nature but broad reaching in their application. As Visual Studio 2013 Preview has now shipped, we’re closing this item to give your votes back for you to use on emerging topics. We encourage you to try out the changes we’ve made and then share additional feedback you might have.
Visual Studio UX Team
Take a look at the VS 2012 Color Theme Editor – it is an option for creating and editing your own Visual Studio themes.
Doug Turnure – Visual Studio PM
David Bradley commented
I have been bragging about how good the IDE was getting with VS2010. I read that VS2012's interface was bad. I downloaded the RC today and unfortunately I agree. I am not looking forward to spending my next few years without the visual benefit that I am use to with VS2010. I don't think I would jump ship at this time but also don't thing the ride would be very enjoyable. Please change it back or at least give us developers the ability to change it ourselfs.
For the first time I installed visual studio 2012 And I was absolutely stunned by its disgusting . Is that really Ms piece of **** ????? I cant believe the difference I had between 2012 and 2010 . 2010 was absolutely breeze with colors and beauty !! Well is that a trend in Microsoft that whatever developers / users like Microsoft needs to change it ? Whether the user / developer Likes it or not ????? Please bring back the colors of visual studio 2010 . We absolutely love it . Please dont remove that . That would be utterly disgusting to work on with 8 hours a day .
Phase I was releasing the beta with the really bad UI.
Phase II was receiving all the complaints about it and really not doing anything about it.
Phase III was releasing the product with the same really bad UI (remember, this is a product where its users typically sit in front of it all day long where it used to have a REALLY good UI).
Phase IV is asking for users for comments and not ack'ing that there might be anything wrong.
Phase V, I believe, just came with the MSDN article where MS tells us how it is really our fault if we have problems with the UI because the VS 2012 IDE is really a masterpiece. Read it for yourself.
>I need to know if I can keep developing on .Net, or become a Java developer and switch to Eclipse..
Microsoft obviously trying to drive out developers from VS. What is not understandable - why? Is this intraspecies struggle, one political group in MS trying to kill successful project of another group?
Christian Hawkins commented
Yeah, I gave this some time, thought maybe I'd get used to it... NOPE, STILL SUCKS!
I'd bet the same idiots that thought the Office Ribbon was a good idea did this.
Janie Pumphrey commented
We need brighter color in all icons, but especially in the Solution Explorer icons.
In VS 2010, I could use the colors in my peripheral vision to spot what I need and open it quickly - without taking time to look at the list in detail.
In VS 2012, I need to look at the files and folders individually to check the shape of the icon, read the file name, etc. It's not efficient.
The tiny splash of dull accent color in the icons isn't enough - we need the colors to be visible in peripheral vision.
As everyone said, the UI is plain terrible! At first, I thought I would hate VS 2010, but when I used it, I absolutely loved it... so I'm not the kind of people who can't accept a change if it is good...
Unfortunately, it is not the case here at all, the lack of colors makes my eyes hurt and decrease my productivity. I want to write code to make a living, not to become blind.
How such a thing could ship is beyond me...
Stop hiring art designers who don't have a clue about the applications they work on...
Do developers at MS really use VS 2012? What do they say? Do you have a mutiny on board?
It really makes me anxious for the future... what's next? A big ribbon in our VS, taking half of the screen?
Anyway, why is there NO reply or feedback from the VS team on this since June? Will this get fixed by an add-in or service pack? Please tell...
I need to know if I can keep developing on .Net, or become a Java developer and switch to Eclipse...
Hans Pfaff commented
The VS2012 GUI is as bad as it can get. Not enough contrast in toolbars, titlebars, tabs etc...
Only now I can honor how wonderful the VS2010 GUI was.
I hate having to look at this smeared blurr of like colors.
Dark theme is all black in black, Light theme is white in white. This stresses my eyes and I am afraid this damages them in the long run.
I customized my editor colors; unfortunately this is not possible with the rmainder of the %#@!*&^$# application.
Billy Carson commented
This is the most disguisting and dissapointing UI I ever seen. When demostrated on MS conference I thought is was a joke. Later on I really thought it was a RC or beta.
WTF is this crab. I can't be true I have to look at this piece of **** 8 hours a day :-(
DROP THE CAPS and add some colour. Surely MS must of checked with developers (real developers) before going live?!??! If they all agreed the CAPS and colour scheme was fine, then they can't be developers.
I'm struggling with this guys, please allow us the option to change colour and remove the CAPS, who the **** liked the CAPS!
The dark theme is too dark, and the light is too light!
And it is hard to differentiate different window areas!
..i wonder how long failure can continue without crashing the system, as microsoft they deeply know, how to save system and not corrupt anything else, immediate BSOD and restart is quite necessary, at least on windows systems ;}
Crispin Wright commented
I'm currently working on a gig where we have solutions with upwards of 350 projects, I've loaded them into VS2012.
Scrolling up and down between projects to find anything is simply excrutiating.
Even with Resharper helping me find files, classes and types e.t.c, I still do a fair bit of scrolling up and down as you can imagine. In terms of giving your team something measurable, I'd say it takes me at least three or four times longer to find any single item in solution explorer in VS2012 than it does in VS2010.
In terms of using the actual UI for 8 hours a day, it's not even remotely funny.
The new features in VS2012 are great, but the UI is absolutely and completely unusable.
I'd say it's so bad it's comparable to the first fifteen minutes of the movie Elizabethtown. I feel sincerely sorry for whoever is Orlando Bloom....
Please Please Add Some color to VS2012 IDE, and Drop the Caps!!! on menu items. VS2005-2008,Great IDE, VS2010 Even Better...Something went pear-shaped on VS2012.. makes me not want to use it at all
The GUI for VS 2012 is just plain ole hard on the eyes. In prior VS products I could deftly hit an icon from recognizing a color pattern. Now I actually have to stop and focus on the actual shape inside inside the icon. I have two high resolution monitors that can handle color. So really VS 2012 Interactive Design Team put the color back in visual studio.
From looking on the MSDN site yesterday, it appears to me that Microsoft still believes that this interface is their "best yet". I couldn't find any mention from anyone at Microsoft where they even recognize that people are unhappy with the UI (or just avoiding using it altogether).
In their user comments section, they only respond to those who like the UI or have very specific issues (as in a certain library not working properly).
It would make us users feel much better about moving in the "adoption" direction if we knew that it was going to get fixed. For example, the VSCommands add-in already fixes the "all caps" menu problem. Is there going to be an add-in that fixes the missing colors / distinguishable icons / borders issues? Is there an API that allows these to be built?
VS 2012's look reminds me of an overexposed photograph: it's difficult to tell one thing from another and it's hard on the eyes. The problem with the look of VS 2012 for me is that I have to work really hard to tell where one thing starts and another ends. And the all-upper-case menu items: really!?
I totally agreee I use vs 2010 and vs 2012 and I hate vs 2012 because they look different. What kind of mellon designed this new studio with the black and white feel and look. Listen to your customers. This new VS 2012 s u c k s plain and simple.
ADD COLORRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR PLEASEEEEEEEEEEE
Nick Gilbert commented
This is just so ugly that I'm actually considering uninstalling it and getting a refund. I honestly can't stand to look at it and I find the "50 shades of grey" appearance annoys me so much that I can't actually concentrate on doing my work. Are you sure your UI designers actually have good eyesight and proper cognitive function? A big part of me thinks they're just thinks they're sitting their in their studio laughing hysterically that you actually went with their suggestion. It's just so ugly (like anything metro styled) that it makes a mockery of your product. And why ignore the 15,000 User Voice comments relating to the awful theme when you had the chance to fix it during the beta or RC? I simply do not understand.