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
Removed color by -100 points, and "adding" by 1, the result is -99 points!
You are scoffing.
"Please add color to VS 2012." "We added color to VS 2013, item complete!" ...well no, not if VS 2012 doesn't also get this update.
Much appreciated, thanks for listening.
Are the menus NO LONGER SCREAMING AT ME without requiring a registry hack? Is the washed out, dirty water grey now a real black? Sigh. I had such high hopes after 2010 came out. It appears that VS releases suffer from a similar predicament as Star Trek films: every Nth one is destined to be less than satisfactory.
Thank you for listening to your customers. :) You guys are awesome!
David Rickard commented
Thanks for adding the color back.
Michael Trigoboff commented
What about the menu bar? Has it stopped SHOUTING???
Visual Studio 2013 - Better.
I like the color scheme of the common action icons. The color usage is conservative but much more effective than the black and white.
The border line work - better. I think it's important to have it there. I would include the color of the border lines in the color editor.
Solution Explorer looks better. The icons at the top of the window need color. Maybe follow the common action coloring?
I would still like to see support for Aero in the main window border. The dialog boxes all support it, why not the main window?
Need an option to load user-defined icons. With such speed of "fixes", this seems the only way to restore normal icons in a reasonable timeframe.
>The icons have color
Seems it will take another 10 or 20 years until they will again have _true_ color.
The icons have color but the MENU IS STILL SHOUTING.. Arghhh.....
What will be fixed in VS2013 UI?
Jesse McGrew commented
This week the Xbox team surprised a lot of people by walking back the controversial Xbox One policies that sparked so much backlash. The Visual Studio team could learn a few things from them.
Not sure why anyone see this as a problem. The visual Studio we use is just about perfect.
Should add we are using VS2008 !
Microsoft get off your high horse and fix 2012 your take on Modern doesn't work.
Then you might just see some Windows 8 apps - Till then we are sticking with a usable version
despite having purchased VS 2012 for each developer - not one wants to use it!
I was happy with VS2008, it was perfect, UI wise. Then came VS2010: no borders and messed up colors. I tried the classic theme, but it's buggy: active files drop down, close cross and scroll arrow in document well is invisible until hoovered. And it had no way of fixing the missing borders. Also customization was messed up: drag and drop no longer works for customizing menus and toolbars. Several steps backward and loss of functionality, to satisfy your perverse need for UI change. Then came VS2012: no colors in menus and toolbars, and where you have colors, they are without shadows or gradients. Tree view is messed up, no lines and non standard icons. No support for XP. IntelliSense is messed up, don't work if file has a compilation error. I could go on.
Remember the reason you exist today is because of developers.
les baker commented
I am a Development Manager with a small but effective team. I feel it is important to say i have worked for various teams and used every version of Visual Studio from version 4 and up.
However this new interface, quite literally, gives me migraines. I've tried the theme editor, but after several attempts of it crashing my install I broke through and found it made no difference as the icons are still confusing and cause me eye strain to the point that I still suffer from Migraines after using the program for more than 10 minutes. I even tried a hack from one of my fellow develoeprs to replace the icons with those exported from 2010. This kept crashing and still I found the eye strain coming back.
I am REFUSING to upgrade my developers and our projects to 2012. As a result I am also refusing to start new projects using any technology incompatible with Visual Studio 2010.
Why? Because firstly i value my own health and secondly because EVERY MEMBER OF MY DEVELOPMENT TEAM FEEL THE SAME WAY. Come ON Microsoft, how many developers does it take before you will admit you got it WRONG?
Until Microsoft reverts the interface to something more akin to a development environment I am refusing to upgrade and if it goes on much longer i will have to follow my development team's idea of switching to Sharp Develop. At least that won't lose me my sanity.... or my team.
I see where VS 2013 will have an option to expand the pending changes window so I'm going to have to give them a pass on the "fiddly and small interface" remark - provided it works.
I do hope there's some attention being given to the icon coloring. It's amazing how much it helps.
Mark S commented
The theme editor does not fix the indistinguishable icons and the complete lack of borders/etc between UI elements. Every time I see VS 2010 again it reinforces how godawful the 2012 UI is. The only reason I use 2012 is because of async/await.