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Jackolicious

mac Evernote for Mac 6: Design Feedback

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Hey Evernote land!

 

We've just launched a newly redesigned Evernote for Mac and we'd love your feedback. There has already been quite a lot of discussion, so let me sum up what we understand from it so far:

 

Text contrast: We've attempted to improve text legibility significantly from version 5. This is directly in response to your feedback. We have several upcoming updates that take even further steps to respond to your feedback and bump contrast even more! 

 

Light background: With the new version, we have adopted many of Apple's design queues from Mac OS X Yosemite (10.10). Lighter backgrounds and translucency (what Apple calls Vibrancy) are among the design themes for Apple's new OS (our new home). We've worked closely with Apple and their design guidelines to craft a beautiful new look without removing any existing functionality. Users on Yosemite should now see that Evernote fits right in. Users on 10.9: we’ve heard your feedback and you should see more contrast coming back to your UI in versions 6.0.2 and above.

 

If you have any additional feedback, please feel free to voice it below. Please keep the discussion constructive. We read every post, we put our hearts into this product, this is our life's work, and we love your feedback. It only helps us get better. 

 

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We have all bugs noted so far. General feedback can stay there. Let's keep this thread design-focused.

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I love the new look.

 

Please dont go back to the old.

I dont mind contrast improvements here and there...

 

But the new look is by far superior.

 

Great work evernote.

 

Evernote is supposed to work well with other apps... And having apps that actually work closely with apple to make a better hollistic experience really is a breath of fresh air!

Thank you.

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I'm all about change, improvement, technology, pushing the envelope.  That's what I do for a living.

But we must recognize when something is simply not working as intended for a large number of users, such as the recent UI color scheme "improvements".  And the Evernote team seems to be understanding this.

It seems that for myself and others, the new scheme is so egregious and visually counter intuitive to workflow that it warrants consideration of moving away from the program or not using it as much.  Given this, the simplest solution should be to provide both schemes asap (which would make most happy) and later the ability to further customize the scheme to your individual liking, which would make everyone happy.

Many thanks for listening EN team.  Look forward to resolution in update asap.

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The "Apple" design fad won't last. Is Evernote going to just follow them blindly? This is a total cop out. Low contrast makes things less intuitive. That's a fact. I understand wanting to blend in but how about some user testing. White on light light grey? 

 

I know Phil talks about Evernote employees being the main testers but is there any testing with non-Evernote employees? How about non-Evernote users to see if the product is intuitive? New version is very rough on the eyes.

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The "Apple" design fad won't last. Is Evernote going to just follow them blindly? This is a total cop out. Low contrast makes things less intuitive. That's a fact. I understand wanting to blend in but how about some user testing. White on light light grey? 

 

I know Phil talks about Evernote employees being the main testers but is there any testing with non-Evernote employees? How about non-Evernote users to see if the product is intuitive? New version is very rough on the eyes.

James its not a fact.... 

Secondly there is actually more contrast in many aspects than before...

 

You call black on black indentation to see if you are notes better contrast?

You call GREEN tags on white background better contrast?

There is a reason we write with blue or black on paper...

 

This update brings practical design... simplicity and superior colour contrast choices...

It also allows better visibility by making note titles... and tags stand out, whilst in note writing in snippet view.. take a back seat....

 

It is clean... It fits with the rest of the system...

I dont want to have my browser open and in use with Evernote in the backround... And Evernote stealing the show when I am not even using it... 

 

 

Also apple's design is not a fad...

In fact the design has always been rather consistent and similar....

 

Now its better than ever.

 

 

Screenshot... Showing beautiful integration with safari. (Note the app is in the background... Ussually there is even more contrast... Now it is whiter...

https://www.evernote.com/l/AS5WP_hgndlHf4PCCAHnfTN4fJTjvzJV2xo

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@lykoz:  Are you going to rebut every post that complains about the UI design?  I hope not.

We clearly understand that you like it a lot, and that's fine.

You made your very positive post at the top, and all over these forums.

 

But please allow others to express their opinion without a long rebuttal every time.

 

Thanks.

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Jackolicious - in your summing of what you understand so far from all the discussions - you basically chose to totally ignore what hundreds of users on this forum, and hundreds more on iTunes and other sites have been telling you repeatedly for the past two weeks. Which kind of makes this a pointless exercise. Do the words 'horrible', 'no contrast', 'horrid', 'bland' and 'blinding' (to name just a few) ring a bell? Have you read through the iTunes comments - most of which give Evernote only 1 star for version 6.0?

 

How much clearer do you need it to be? Your conclusion from all these posts seems to be that 'the beautiful new design fits right in' (??????????!!!). Wow. "Bump contrast EVEN more". (??????????????) Maybe you should take up politics? Or you really do live in 'Evernote-land' which is a make-believe place that has nothing to do with the real world... If you cover your ears and start yelling 'la, la, la, la...' - the bad people that are not telling you what you want to hear might go away. They probably will - but they will move on to other software providers - the ones that actually DO LISTEN.

 

More importantly - your comment about Evernote 'working closely with Apple' pretty much explains the misguided decisions in the new design and the likelihood that we will see significant changes.

 

So what is the point of this new thread - haven't people already posted enough - with well over 90% of comments being exactly the same and repeating to death the same thing??? How many times do you need the same thing explained to you? Pretty much everything that you chose to ignore - is everything that people have asked for. There you have your answer - if you are really looking for one. Or Is this just a marketing exercise as for weeks Evernote employees did not even find it fit even to reply to the concerns and negative comments? Which just don't seem to go away for some unexplainable reason.

 

More worryingly - if you really didn't get it from the hundreds and hundreds of posts - should you really be in that job? 

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Jackolocious - in your summing of what you understand so far from all the discussions - you basically chose to totally ignore what hundreds of users on this forum, and hundreds more on iTunes and other sites have been telling you repeatedly for the past two weeks. Which kind of makes this a pointless exercise.

 

How much clearer do you need it to be? Your conclusion from all these posts seems to be that 'the beautiful new design fits right in' (??????????!!!). Wow. "Bump contrast EVEN more". (??????????????) Maybe you should take up politics? Or you really do live in 'Evernote-land' which is a make-believe place that has nothing to do with the real world...

 

More importantly - your comment about you 'working close with Apple' pretty much explains the misguided decisions in the new design and the likelihood that we will see significant changes.

 

So what is the point of this new thread - haven't people already posted enough - with well over 90% of comments being exactly the same and repeating to death the same thing??? Pretty much everything that you chose to ignore - is everything that people have asked for. There you have your answer. If you are really looking for one. Or Is this just a marketing exercise as for weeks Evernote employees did not even find it fit even to reply to the concerns?

 

I agree 100% with this...

 

Jackolocious people have taken time to write comments and there has already been a discussion on this.  Based on what you just posted it feels as if you are intentionally ignoring all the previous posts related to this under the 6.0, 6.0.1, and various other threads.

 

Do NOT ask people to start over again. Take the time to do a better summary of what has been asked for and it was NOT just the two items you listed above. 

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Just to add my 2c worth - again, given that we have a new thread specifically on the topic of UI design, let me make the following points:

 

- lykoz and a few others like it. We can get that out of the way as a start.  Yes, there are some who actually like it - fair enough. But that doesn't make them "right" (there's actually no such thing), given that they're in a minority - at least on here, on the App store, and on Twitter, they are in a tiny minority of about 95:5 against.

 

- the problems are not JUST the changes in contrast. It's everything to do with the UI.  Some people like colour in both the app itself and also in the icons (I do) - what is wrong with colour? Colour makes the app look like an Evernote app with its own identity instead of bland grey nothingness of many other apps.  Colour in the icons and buttons makes them MUCH easier to take in without having to "read" every icon. Colour is good. That's why we now have the ability to use millions of colour shades. But what does Evernote do? It goes to grey...! And given that Evernote states that they are following Apple's design decrees, what about Apple's own products such as Pages, Numbers, Keynote etc?  They all still have coloured icons and buttons, especially under Mavericks. And we wont' mention the fact that Apple' own standards have apps with customisable toolbars, yet Evernote doesn't...

 

- a LARGE part of the problem is that Evernote are dictating the way the app looks completely, as well as dictating what features are in there, having removed some (progress bar, for example) and hidden others (email note). They have forced buttons on the toolbar that the vast majority of users will never use (chat) and introduced features like Context that only a few will ever use, but they still haven't got the basic functions working 100%.

 

- if Evernote want to stop the complaints - at least about the UI design - then they should give control of what the app looks like (within defined parameters) back to the users. That way, I can choose to use the Classic theme, for example, with a dark sidebar, green surrounds, and coloured icons. I could customise the toolbar and remove the Chat button, and put buttons on there (with coloured icons, of course) for Email note and for Print.  Others can tailor things the way THEY like. And people such as lykoz who actually like the new design can choose to have it that way.

 

- Surely, making as much as possible to be customizable will remove ALL complaints, grumbling, and downright ANGER about the appearance?

 

- Then we could use these forums to discuss REAL bugs in the software - things that actually affect how it works or doesn't work, as the case may be.  Sync problems, editing problems, formatting problems, etc etc. These are really much more important than the design of the appearance. But the design has met with such a storm of criticism that it has completely overshadowed the REAL bug reports and discussions. The mere fact that so many people have signed up to these forums as first-time posters just so they can complain, mostly about the appearance, should be a huge wake-up call.

 

- and LISTEN to what people are saying.  Stop trying to spin things to try and fit them to your preconceived design, with tiny tweaks as concessions but announced as "updates". Please just accept the fact that you have got it wrong on this occasion. Go back to the drawing board, stage 1.  And involve your users, especially those who are engaged enough to take part in these forums. Accept the input from everyone.  After all, they are not going to make suggestions that would make Evernote HARDER to use, are they? Nope - they are making suggestions to make it BETTER.  B E T T E R......  Got it? 

 

Fully customisable interface, no more complaints about the UI, and sort out the real bugs. Simple really...  But it does mean swallowing a bit of humble pie - something that Evernote seems not to be very good at!

 

Oh, one other thing. The move up to Mavericks was basically a no-brainer (although a lot of folks are still on earlier OS versions). But the move to Yosemite is fraught with problems, and please do NOT assume that all users are now on Yosemite.  Clearly, we are not. There are major problems with Yosemite (badly broken Mail app, serious WiFi problems, not to mention the radical look - translucency is a cool fad that has many people turning it off). As I've posted elsewhere, a lot of folks who went to Yosemite (at our university, for example) have been, or are being, downgraded back to Mavericks using Time Machine or SuperDuper or similar. The "uptake" of Yosemite is hard to judge, as the number of downloads of the OS doesn't equate to the number of people who stay on it. Personally, I hated it before downgrading back to Mavericks, and will be staying on Mavericks. So blindly following the Mac OS X upgrade is not a smart move.  Yes, make the app compatible with Yosemite - you have to do that, agreed. But DON'T work on the assumption that only a minority of users are still on Mavericks. Evidence - at least anecdotally - suggests that Yosemite is still only a minority or on new machines. This may be the case for some time to come. Bit like the fact that the most widely used OS on ANY computer around the world today is STILL Windows XP.

 

Sorry for the long post, but I will restrain myself from posting more - I just thought I'd summarise the situation as far as the UI design goes, given that we now have a thread dedicated to it.

 

Over and out :)

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Nightstalker - just so you don't feel left out - I am on Yosemite - believe me, the design of Evernote looks just as horrible on Yosemite... : )

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Without making any comments at this time, I just want to post my screenshot of EN 6.0.2 on Yosemite for all to see and reference:

 

EN-Mac-602-Yos.gif

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To compare and contrast, here is my screenshot of Mac Finder on Yosemite:

 

Revised on Mon, Dec 1, 2014 at 9:44 PM, to show Finder without TotalFinder being installed.

Not much difference, IMO, with the biggest difference being the color of the icons in the Sidebar.

 

 

Mac-Finder-NoTF-Yos.gif

 

You can view my original image at https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/7107976/Evernote/EN6/Mac-Finder-Yos.gif

Edited by JMichael
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I think I may just get myself a monochrome monitor and be done with it... (tongue firmly planted in cheek) :wacko:

 

PS: or I may just leave my cataracts the way they are!

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And here is non-classic layout of mail ( I use classic) but I thought this layout is more similar to the Evernote layout. Just for Reference. Seems similar to new Evernote... I kind of prefer the blue border to the all blue selection but thats just me.

 

Note the brown colour on the left is the translucency showing the background behind. Similar to Evernote.

 

https://www.evernote.com/l/AS7p7ifWuk9KJYUvb3EBTnKP-2N-toEGLJY

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To compare and contrast, here is my screenshot of Mac Finder on Yosemite:

 

 

 

Um your Mac Finder for Yosemite is incorect.... Thats not how it looks on yosemite.... dont know where you got that image by the way... I would advise removing it.. It paints a completely false image... That is simply not the finder look in yosemite.

 

here is what it looks like on yosemite...

 

https://www.evernote.com/l/AS4QsXpSD4xJx5Ud2tMGt0PiXolTTdTJlDo

 

less colour... Much neater... Much cleaner.

 

In fact very similar to new Evernote look...

 

All without colour except the cetral pieces... i.e. in the finders case the actual files... (similar to how evernote's central pieces (i.e. the notes also have colour)

Not the file lists on the left...

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To compare and contrast, here is my screenshot of Mac Finder on Yosemite:

 

 

 

Um your Mac Finder for Yosemite is incorect.... Thats not how it looks... dont know where you got that image by the way...

 

here is what it looks like on yosemite...

 

https://www.evernote.com/l/AS4QsXpSD4xJx5Ud2tMGt0PiXolTTdTJlDo

 

less colour... Much neater... Much cleaner.

 

 

Yuk - how can you say that less colour is much neater and cleaner? That's awful!  I know you like it, and it's a personal choice. But there are many more who don't like it.

 

What IS it with this trendy fad that seems to declare colour as being a bad thing?  After all the years of monitor and graphics card development so we CAN have colour (and in these days of 4K televisions with a bazillion colour reproduction), now the cool gang want to go back to grey!

 

THAT is exactly why Evernote should give control of the appearance, the theme, the toolbar - everything - back to the user. Then lykoz can have it in bland grey and white, while I have it in glorious technicolour!

 

PS: JM can answer for himself, I'm sure, but his picture of Finder looks different from yours probably because he has translucency turned off, while you have it on.

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@lykoz:  Are you calling me a liar??? This was a direct snapshot on my MBA-13.

Are you an Evernote plant???

 

The look of the Finder depends on what is behind it.  And, you have chosen a different view than I did.

 

I think you had better check your facts before you challenge my credibility.

 

 

Um your Mac Finder for Yosemite is incorect.... Thats not how it looks on yosemite.... dont know where you got that image by the way... I would advise removing it.. It paints a completely false image... That is simply not the finder look in yosemite.

 

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Yuk - how can you say that less colour is much neater and cleaner? That's awful!  I know you like it, and it's a personal choice. But there are many more who don't like it.

 

What IS it with this trendy fad that seems to declare colour as being a bad thing?  After all the years of monitor and graphics card development so we CAN have colour (and in these days of 4K televisions with a bazillion colour reproduction), now the cool gang want to go back to grey!

 

THAT is exactly why Evernote should give control of the appearance, the theme, the toolbar - everything - back to the user. Then lykoz can have it in bland grey and white, while I have it in glorious technicolour!

 

 

Well we are going a bit off topic critiquing apple apps here...

 

I was kind of pointing out that JMichaels post was inaccurate.

 

Also this is painting a very clear picture... That you dont like Apple's yosemite look irrelevant of Evernote...

 

If you own a Mac you are going to have to deal with it or go to windows...

 

Also you cant say most people hate the new Yosemite look... 

 

Stick with your revolt of Evernote... dont go so far as to say most users dont like Yosemite... You are kind of over stretching here.

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@lykoz:  Are you calling me a liar??? This was a direct snapshot on my MBA-13.

Are you an Evernote plant???

 

The look of the Finder depends on what is behind it.  And, you have chosen a different view than I did.

 

I think you had better check your facts before you challenge my credibility.

 

 

Um your Mac Finder for Yosemite is incorect.... Thats not how it looks on yosemite.... dont know where you got that image by the way... I would advise removing it.. It paints a completely false image... That is simply not the finder look in yosemite.

 

 

I dont care what view you chose....

The sidebar in std Yosemite Finder DOES NOT have coloured ICONS... 

 

That is NOT the standard or default YOSEMITE LOOK! Infact the look you posted looks VERY different to the default yosemite look... That looks more like a previous Apple OS.

 

So even if it is a Yosemite finder Variant... Your a skewing what it was meant to look like by apple in order to support your point!

 

Which is very dishonest!

 

Sorry to say... But I have called you out on that one...

That is not the standard Finder Look...

 

Infact I dont even know how u changed it to look like that... Care to share it with us?

 

I might as well go to accessibility and tick 'grayscale' and call THAT the Yosemite look...

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Posted · Hidden by charboyd, December 2, 2014 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War
Hidden by charboyd, December 2, 2014 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War

@lykoz:  I think you are a troll. You have NO credibility with me, and I suspect, with few others here.  I haven't seen anyone "liking" your posts. You clearly don't know what you are talking about.  Please go bother someone else.

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Posted · Hidden by charboyd, December 2, 2014 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War
Hidden by charboyd, December 2, 2014 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War

@lykoz:  I think you are a troll. You have NO credibility with me, and I suspect, with few others here.  I haven't seen anyone "liking" your posts. You clearly don't know what you are talking about.  Please go bother someone else.

 

JMichael are you for real? Do a google search for Finder in Yosemite and see what comes up....

 

You are the only one trolling....

 

Are you sure you are even using Yosemite?

 

OSX HAS NOT HAD COLOURED ICONS ON SIDEBAR AS DEFAULT LOOK SINCE SNOW LEOPARD!!!!!!!!

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Also this is painting a very clear picture... That you dont like Apple's yosemite look irrelevant of Evernote...

 

If you own a Mac you are going to have to deal with it or go to windows...

 

Also you cant say most people hate the new Yosemite look... 

 

Stick with your revolt of Evernote... dont go so far as to say most users dont like Yosemite... You are kind of over stretching here.

 

 

No, I'm not. I never said that "most" people hate Yosemite.  I said "many". I'm going on the advice of our IT department at the university where I teach, where the IT dept has been busy downgrading most upgraders back to Mavericks.  The IT dept also put out a bulletin telling people NOT to upgrade to Yosemite - not because of the look, but because the Mail app does not play nicely with the university exchange server. There are all sorts of problems.  Also the wifi issues are a big problem for many.

 

And your comment that I am "going to have to deal with it" is completely wrong.  No I'm not.  I'm simply sticking with Mavericks, just as many others have stuck with Lion, Mountain Lion, or Snow Leopard. That is my choice - I do NOT have to "deal with Yosemite" if I choose not to.  What I do NOT like is Evernote pushing Yosemite appearance stuff onto me.

 

I can "stick with my revolt of Evernote", and you can stick with your "defence of Yosemite and Evernote".  That's fine - I don't really have a problem with that.

 

But it does seem rather odd that given the numbers of complaints, you seem to be marching to a different tune and claim to be the only one in step, while everyone else who has criticized the appearance of Evernote v6 must be out of step.

 

It is that dictatorial attitude - Evernote's and yours - that gets people annoyed. You're quite welcome to enjoy whatever appearance you'd like Evernote and Yosemite to have. But please don't tell everyone else that it is the only way to go, that it is "much neater" (only in your opinion) and that we are going to have to "deal with it".

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Also this is painting a very clear picture... That you dont like Apple's yosemite look irrelevant of Evernote...

 

If you own a Mac you are going to have to deal with it or go to windows...

 

Also you cant say most people hate the new Yosemite look... 

 

Stick with your revolt of Evernote... dont go so far as to say most users dont like Yosemite... You are kind of over stretching here.

 

 

No, I'm not. I never said that "most" people hate Yosemite.  I said "many". I'm going on the advice of our IT department at the university where I teach, where the IT dept has been busy downgrading most upgraders back to Mavericks.  The IT dept also put out a bulletin telling people NOT to upgrade to Yosemite - not because of the look, but because the Mail app does not play nicely with the university exchange server. There are all sorts of problems.  Also the wifi issues are a big problem for many.

 

And your comment that I am "going to have to deal with it" is completely wrong.  No I'm not.  I'm simply sticking with Mavericks, just as many others have stuck with Lion, Mountain Lion, or Snow Leopard. That is my choice - I do NOT have to "deal with Yosemite" if I choose not to.  What I do NOT like is Evernote pushing Yosemite appearance stuff onto me.

 

I can "stick with my revolt of Evernote", and you can stick with your "defence of Yosemite and Evernote".  That's fine - I don't really have a problem with that.

 

But it does seem rather odd that given the numbers of complaints, you seem to be marching to a different tune and claim to be the only one in step, while everyone else who has criticized the appearance of Evernote v6 must be out of step.

 

It is that dictatorial attitude - Evernote's and yours - that gets people annoyed. You're quite welcome to enjoy whatever appearance you'd like Evernote and Yosemite to have. But please don't tell everyone else that it is the only way to go, that it is "much neater" (only in your opinion) and that we are going to have to "deal with it".

 

 

All new Operating Systems have bugs at the start...

 

Also yes... In the case of apple you do kind of have to deal with it... 

Also the colour scheme is not simply a Yosemite refresh... There were many similarities in Mavericks, and even lion...

 

I didnt say the 'deal with it' line in reference to Evernote.

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OK, lykoz, this is my LAST response to your ill-gotten posts:

 

As you requested, here is an image from a google of "Yosemite finder"

Looks a lot like my post!  Imagine that!  Now, go bother someone else!!!

 

From:  http://www.macstories.net/mac/extensibility-and-automation-changes-in-os-x-yosemite/

 

 

Yes your second image IS how Yosemite Finder looks.

looks like you made a mistake and posted the wrong image initially...

 

Now go back to your first post....

And look at the image you posted.

Delete it... And update it with a relevant picture

 

Notice the Tabs.... How they look...

Also notice the sidebar.... One is translucent, one is not.... One has coloured icons, one has black/grey icons...

 

If you were not so defensive to start, you would have noticed a lot sooner, and we wouldn't have to go through all that.

 

 

Thank you.

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Posted · Hidden by charboyd, December 2, 2014 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War
Hidden by charboyd, December 2, 2014 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War

lykoz is now on my Forum Ignore list so that his/her posts don't clutter the threads I view.  See your forum profile to add anyone to your ignore list.

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lykoz is now on my Forum Ignore list so that his/her posts don't clutter the threads I view.  See your forum profile to add anyone to your ignore list.

 

What a child....

 

He doesnt even acknowledge he was wrong...

Even if you dont agree with my views...

 

or you dont like me...

 

You cant say the two images he posted are the same...

 

One is default/std Yosemite... The other Clearly is not....

 

Differences:

 

Menu Bar on 1st has coloured icons...(Not Yosemite)

Tabs are rounded (Not Yosemite)... They are square in yosemite finder... (his second image did not have tabs)...

Tabs are below Menu bar in Yosemite... Not above like his first screenshot...

 

Yosemite Menu bar 2nd image is translucent.... His first Image... There is NO Translucency.

 

Basically he was trying to show how yosemite finder has colour on menubar... WHEN CLEARLY IT DOES NOT!

 

How can this guy give an educated opinion... about what Evernote/apple apps look like when he can not even tell the difference between Yosemite and some other Finder he posted...

 

No credibility whatsoever.

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I didn't expect Evernote fellow to fail noting the difference when people talk about "contrast". Yeah there's contrast as in "text-agaist-background" contrast, which I assume is what @Jackcolicious was talking about. But there are also icon/button-against-background contrast, and the contrast distinguishing different areas, which is what I see most talked about on the forum.

 

As to theicon/button-against-background contrast, I don't think anyone in good conscience can say that it is an improvement from 5.X -- small size, extreme thin lines, light gray colors, no fill colors, lack of shadow/highlight when active, etc.

 

And the contrast in background color for different panes... I don't particularly feel like repeating hundreds of posts.

 

You can make fonts sharper, font color darker, and backgrounds whiter -- but that's not "improving contrast" if the whole thing looks so drab and blindingly white that people cannot even look at it. 

Edited by frogwell

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I will make one last suggestion to Evernote staff to please consider....

 

The layman does not tell a doctor how to operate...

The laymen does not tell a top architect how to design skyscrapers...

 

End-users need to be considered for functionality.. And what the market demands...

 

However at the end of the day... You simply employ the best designers...

And trust in their work.... UI is very specific with many considerations... If we trusted end-users to know what they 'think' they want... We would only have very terrible designs...

UI is not about what people think they like... Its about what works... Its about creative, calculated, logical design.

 

To be honest I don't care what Evernote does with regards to look..

They obviously care about their product enough to employ the best.

Im happy with whatever the professionals decide.

 

UI is not a topic for End-user discussion...

 

To do otherwise is bad management. It would simply create a ridiculous look if you try please everyone.

Users are always resistant to change...

In the long run they will get used to it and be happier for it.

 

Also the 9 people following this thread... and the 30 people following the previous thread... Is hardly substantive complaints, with regards to your millions of happy users... The users that rated the latest update were no more than 500... mostly disgruntled... Mostly people who were complaining about bugs... and it still got 3 stars from 4 which the app had prior...

 

Happy people dont complain or rate each release due to displeasure, on every update...

 

I truly believe the majority of the user base is very happy with this new look. It is certainly better than before. Otherwise i dont think it would get the nod from your design team...

 

Until the next look... waiting for more.. Better.. progressive and intuitive..

With Professional designers making all the decisions.

 

Just my two Cents.

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I have to agree completely with this. The team seems to have "selective hearing" when it comes to all the feedback that's already been given. Don't make us repost everything in this thread.

 

Like others, I think version 6.0 as it stands today has absolutely no character (not to mention that scrolling performance is absolutely atrocious). My opinion would be to use the new web interface as a guide. It has subtle colors while also promoting distinguishable areas (the left hand controls are a good example) - use this as a guide and better distinguish controls from the actual content (I'm looking at you note formatting toolbar).

 

I also have to throw in my opinion and say the lack of customization is unfortunate. I personally will never ever use Work Chat - I don't ever want to see it or be reminded of its existence. If I could customize the toolbar, I could simply remove it. iOS has multiple color schemes - I don't think it's a stretch to offer something similar for the Mac version. Wunderlist (as an example) completely follows Apple's guidelines while still having tons of character - they have distinguishing colors (themes! OH MY!) and an interface that doesn't blind us.

 

Please stop putzing around and spinning the new design as the best thing since sliced bread. It isn't. The outcry on the forums and App Store should be an indicator that something isn't right and it's time to acknowledge this fact.

 

I too hope we can resolve these design issues and focus on what the real problems are.

 

 

 

Just to add my 2c worth - again, given that we have a new thread specifically on the topic of UI design, let me make the following points:

 

- lykoz and a few others like it. We can get that out of the way as a start.  Yes, there are some who actually like it - fair enough. But that doesn't make them "right" (there's actually no such thing), given that they're in a minority - at least on here, on the App store, and on Twitter, they are in a tiny minority of about 95:5 against.

 

- the problems are not JUST the changes in contrast. It's everything to do with the UI.  Some people like colour in both the app itself and also in the icons (I do) - what is wrong with colour? Colour makes the app look like an Evernote app with its own identity instead of bland grey nothingness of many other apps.  Colour in the icons and buttons makes them MUCH easier to take in without having to "read" every icon. Colour is good. That's why we now have the ability to use millions of colour shades. But what does Evernote do? It goes to grey...! And given that Evernote states that they are following Apple's design decrees, what about Apple's own products such as Pages, Numbers, Keynote etc?  They all still have coloured icons and buttons, especially under Mavericks. And we wont' mention the fact that Apple' own standards have apps with customisable toolbars, yet Evernote doesn't...

 

- a LARGE part of the problem is that Evernote are dictating the way the app looks completely, as well as dictating what features are in there, having removed some (progress bar, for example) and hidden others (email note). They have forced buttons on the toolbar that the vast majority of users will never use (chat) and introduced features like Context that only a few will ever use, but they still haven't got the basic functions working 100%.

 

- if Evernote want to stop the complaints - at least about the UI design - then they should give control of what the app looks like (within defined parameters) back to the users. That way, I can choose to use the Classic theme, for example, with a dark sidebar, green surrounds, and coloured icons. I could customise the toolbar and remove the Chat button, and put buttons on there (with coloured icons, of course) for Email note and for Print.  Others can tailor things the way THEY like. And people such as lykoz who actually like the new design can choose to have it that way.

 

- Surely, making as much as possible to be customizable will remove ALL complaints, grumbling, and downright ANGER about the appearance?

 

- Then we could use these forums to discuss REAL bugs in the software - things that actually affect how it works or doesn't work, as the case may be.  Sync problems, editing problems, formatting problems, etc etc. These are really much more important than the design of the appearance. But the design has met with such a storm of criticism that it has completely overshadowed the REAL bug reports and discussions. The mere fact that so many people have signed up to these forums as first-time posters just so they can complain, mostly about the appearance, should be a huge wake-up call.

 

- and LISTEN to what people are saying.  Stop trying to spin things to try and fit them to your preconceived design, with tiny tweaks as concessions but announced as "updates". Please just accept the fact that you have got it wrong on this occasion. Go back to the drawing board, stage 1.  And involve your users, especially those who are engaged enough to take part in these forums. Accept the input from everyone.  After all, they are not going to make suggestions that would make Evernote HARDER to use, are they? Nope - they are making suggestions to make it BETTER.  B E T T E R......  Got it? 

 

Fully customisable interface, no more complaints about the UI, and sort out the real bugs. Simple really...  But it does mean swallowing a bit of humble pie - something that Evernote seems not to be very good at!

 

Oh, one other thing. The move up to Mavericks was basically a no-brainer (although a lot of folks are still on earlier OS versions). But the move to Yosemite is fraught with problems, and please do NOT assume that all users are now on Yosemite.  Clearly, we are not. There are major problems with Yosemite (badly broken Mail app, serious WiFi problems, not to mention the radical look - translucency is a cool fad that has many people turning it off). As I've posted elsewhere, a lot of folks who went to Yosemite (at our university, for example) have been, or are being, downgraded back to Mavericks using Time Machine or SuperDuper or similar. The "uptake" of Yosemite is hard to judge, as the number of downloads of the OS doesn't equate to the number of people who stay on it. Personally, I hated it before downgrading back to Mavericks, and will be staying on Mavericks. So blindly following the Mac OS X upgrade is not a smart move.  Yes, make the app compatible with Yosemite - you have to do that, agreed. But DON'T work on the assumption that only a minority of users are still on Mavericks. Evidence - at least anecdotally - suggests that Yosemite is still only a minority or on new machines. This may be the case for some time to come. Bit like the fact that the most widely used OS on ANY computer around the world today is STILL Windows XP.

 

Sorry for the long post, but I will restrain myself from posting more - I just thought I'd summarise the situation as far as the UI design goes, given that we now have a thread dedicated to it.

 

Over and out :)

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By the way, who spends most of their work hours in Finder?  I spend 90% of my time working in applications, like Photoshop, Premiere, AE - not staring at Finder... so who cares if it matches Finder.  Beside, even Finder allows you to customize the file window background to a color other than white or an image when you are in icon view, not to mention the desktop itself so that you can choose the look (or luminance) that fits your needs.  

Since our previous post was "Locked" by EN in order to open this one on the same topic, this bares repeating:

 

If you work with Adobe products most of your work day, which have a nice subtle grey interface that can be adjusted and customized (leaving mostly your work area the central focus - smart),  try switching back and forth from Photoshop or After Effects to Evernote and prepare for the "Evernote Flash Bang" typically reserved for stunning bad guys on drug raids.  All that's missing is a deafening noise every time you switch to Evernote and your momentary sensory impairment experience will be complete. 

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Wunderlist (as an example) completely follows Apple's guidelines while still having tons of character - they have distinguishing colors (themes! OH MY!) and an interface that doesn't blind us.

 

 

Great example. Use Wunderlist everyday and the design is true to Apple's current style while providing great usability. That little gap between to-do list items makes it so easy to differentiate them. Someone can use Wunderlist without even thinking. That's great design.

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One quick question for EN Desktop Product rep Jackolicious:

In the previous thread on the new color theme, upon Locking the thread you mentioned that "Many of the concerns here have been addressed with 6.0.2".  I have 6.0.2 on my system and the new color scheme situation (which was the primary concern in that thread) was not addressed at all.  How was the "concern" "addressed" in 6.0.2?  I don't find an option to revert to the previous scheme or an option for customization of shading.  What am I missing?

Many thanks for your help.

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One quick question for EN Desktop Product rep Jackolicious:

In the previous thread on the new color theme, upon Locking the thread you mentioned that "Many of the concerns here have been addressed with 6.0.2".  I have 6.0.2 on my system and the new color scheme situation (which was the primary concern in that thread) was not addressed at all.  How was the "concern" "addressed" in 6.0.2?  I don't find an option to revert to the previous scheme or an option for customization of shading.  What am I missing?

Many thanks for your help.

 

6.0.2 appeared to slightly darken the background of the sidebar, thus allowing it to be better discerned from the section immediately to its right.  It is a very slight improvement, no question.

I think there's more to do here though.  

 

And a a Premium user, I'm a little bothered by the political style response from Evernote, almost denying the issue.  Of course those in the forums will be a vocal minority but the swing of opinion here shouldn't be ignored or denied.

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I dont care what view you chose....

The sidebar in std Yosemite Finder DOES NOT have coloured ICONS... 

 

That is NOT the standard or default YOSEMITE LOOK! Infact the look you posted looks VERY different to the default yosemite look... That looks more like a previous Apple OS.

 

I disagree with your unquestioning loyalty to the new Evernote 6 UI design, but in the interest of fairness, I do believe you are correct that JMichael's Finder screen grab portrays an inaccurate view of the "real" Yosemite Finder. It appears that he is using the "TotalFinder" tweak, which restores colored sidebar icons, as well as the characteristic "Chrome" style tabs:

 

http://totalfinder.binaryage.com/tweaks

 

None of this changes the fact that Apple's UI & usability standards for the Finder are extremely questionable, as I posted about in another thread. This is not just a simple issue of being "resistant to change". As a matter of fact, on the whole, I totally love the new Yosemite UI. But monochrome/low-contrast sidebars still makes for extremely bad usability. Your point about how a background app appears when another app is in the foreground, such as Safari, is well taken...but it seems like truly grasping at straws to defend the value of the new low-con EN6 look with that specific use case. I'd hazard to guess that most people are more concerned with how the app they're running in the foreground looks, even if the UI design of an underlying background app may look more distracting than they would prefer.

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@Mel:  You are correct.  I do have TotalFinder installed, and had forgotten about it.

 

I'll provide an update and comparison later, but my main points in showing the Yosemite Finder are:

  1. Clarity in fonts used in the sidebar, size, weight, etc -- very readable
  2. Items currently selected are clearly highlighted by a very visible background color.
  3. The main body does is opaque.
  4. All of the icons/buttons are large enough to be easily identifiable
  5. The selected icon is clearly indicated by a highlighted background

EN Mac 6.0.2 does not do any of these nearly as well as the Finder.  So when it is claimed that Evernote is just "following" Apple, it seems to me that they have fallen way short.

 

I do believe you are correct that JMichael's Finder screen grab portrays an inaccurate view of the "real" Yosemite Finder. It appears that he is using the "TotalFinder" tweak, which restores colored sidebar icons, as well as the characteristic "Chrome" style tabs:.

 

 

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EN Mac 6.0.2 does not do any of these nearly as well as the Finder.  So when it is claimed that Evernote is just "following" Apple, it seems to me that they have fallen way short.

 

 

 

What's horrible about this statement is that--despite my overall approval of the new Yosemite UI conventions--I think a lot of people would agree (including John Siracusa) that the Finder still remains the one major UI blunder Apple made in Yosemite.

 

Saying that Finder does anything better than Evernote 6 is a rather scathing indictment of the Evernote 6 UI.

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I dont care what view you chose....

The sidebar in std Yosemite Finder DOES NOT have coloured ICONS... 

 

That is NOT the standard or default YOSEMITE LOOK! Infact the look you posted looks VERY different to the default yosemite look... That looks more like a previous Apple OS.

 

I disagree with your unquestioning loyalty to the new Evernote 6 UI design, but in the interest of fairness, I do believe you are correct that JMichael's Finder screen grab portrays an inaccurate view of the "real" Yosemite Finder. It appears that he is using the "TotalFinder" tweak, which restores colored sidebar icons, as well as the characteristic "Chrome" style tabs:

 

http://totalfinder.binaryage.com/tweaks

 

None of this changes the fact that Apple's UI & usability standards for the Finder are extremely questionable, as I posted about in another thread. This is not just a simple issue of being "resistant to change". As a matter of fact, on the whole, I totally love the new Yosemite UI. But monochrome/low-contrast sidebars still makes for extremely bad usability. Your point about how a background app appears when another app is in the foreground, such as Safari, is well taken...but it seems like truly grasping at straws to defend the value of the new low-con EN6 look with that specific use case. I'd hazard to guess that most people are more concerned with how the app they're running in the foreground looks, even if the UI design of an underlying background app may look more distracting than they would prefer.

 

Your points are well taken. And they make sense.

 

 

However monochrome sidebar is the same in finder, mail, contacts, reminders... And just about every apple app...

 

So only thing I don't understand is how you can be on-board with Yosemite UI but not with Evernote's integration of the same principles.

 

I am not saying Evernote look can not be improved... I just like the fact that are on-board with yosemite..

I also believe improvement needs to be left up to designers... Its not for us to say how it should be, because hollistic design has a lot of professional aspects to consider. I understand fielding your displeasure... Or asking for improvements... However when the thread starter spoke of those improvements, a lot of posters wanted to jump away from yosemite principles altogether.

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@Mel:  You are correct.  I do have TotalFinder installed, and had forgotten about it.

 

I'll provide an update and comparison later, but my main points in showing the Yosemite Finder are:

  1. Clarity in fonts used in the sidebar, size, weight, etc -- very readable
  2. Items currently selected are clearly highlighted by a very visible background color.
  3. The main body does is opaque.
  4. All of the icons/buttons are large enough to be easily identifiable
  5. The selected icon is clearly indicated by a highlighted background

EN Mac 6.0.2 does not do any of these nearly as well as the Finder.  So when it is claimed that Evernote is just "following" Apple, it seems to me that they have fallen way short.

 

I do believe you are correct that JMichael's Finder screen grab portrays an inaccurate view of the "real" Yosemite Finder. It appears that he is using the "TotalFinder" tweak, which restores colored sidebar icons, as well as the characteristic "Chrome" style tabs:.

 

 

 

The fact remains that your comparison is null and void, as you did not show yosemite finder... You only did when I told you to google it... (and still persisted that the two screenshots you showed were one and the same, when clearly they were not)

 

So your updated post I assume will be with the real yosemite finder? or with Totalfinder? 

You can do either obviously... That is up to you...

 

But please dont post false statements.. If you use Totalfinder.... Dont call it Yosemite Finder. Or call me a troll when I simply state your obvious blunder.

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EN Mac 6.0.2 does not do any of these nearly as well as the Finder.  So when it is claimed that Evernote is just "following" Apple, it seems to me that they have fallen way short.

 

 

 

What's horrible about this statement is that--despite my overall approval of the new Yosemite UI conventions--I think a lot of people would agree (including John Siracusa) that the Finder still remains the one major UI blunder Apple made in Yosemite.

 

Saying that Finder does anything better than Evernote 6 is a rather scathing indictment of the Evernote 6 UI.

 

 

There are many things that I think Finder does better than Evernote, such as the highlighted menu item (background color), icon deisgn (heavier line width goes a long way... and buttons that actually feels "click-able"! -- the edit tool buttons in EN6 are just abysmal in terms of usability), and so on.

 

This crude comparison is EN vs iTunes, but the points stands.

Screen%20Shot%202014-11-24%20at%2012.36.

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But Evernote should not BE all about adhering to Yosemite principles. It should be about adhering to Evernote principles.

 

Otherwise they are ignoring the fact that a large, and significant, proportion of their user base is NOT using Yosemite.

 

Nowhere do they say that Yosemite is a requirement (if they did, they would probably lose a lot of their users), and the app needs to look good AND work properly on Mavericks at least, and probably on earlier OSs as well.

 

I keep coming back to it - but CUSTOMIZATION is the way to go. Let users choose how their own version of the app LOOKS, while Evernote determines how it WORKS.

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I dont care what view you chose....

The sidebar in std Yosemite Finder DOES NOT have coloured ICONS... 

 

That is NOT the standard or default YOSEMITE LOOK! Infact the look you posted looks VERY different to the default yosemite look... That looks more like a previous Apple OS.

 

I disagree with your unquestioning loyalty to the new Evernote 6 UI design, but in the interest of fairness, I do believe you are correct that JMichael's Finder screen grab portrays an inaccurate view of the "real" Yosemite Finder. It appears that he is using the "TotalFinder" tweak, which restores colored sidebar icons, as well as the characteristic "Chrome" style tabs:

 

http://totalfinder.binaryage.com/tweaks

 

None of this changes the fact that Apple's UI & usability standards for the Finder are extremely questionable, as I posted about in another thread. This is not just a simple issue of being "resistant to change". As a matter of fact, on the whole, I totally love the new Yosemite UI. But monochrome/low-contrast sidebars still makes for extremely bad usability. Your point about how a background app appears when another app is in the foreground, such as Safari, is well taken...but it seems like truly grasping at straws to defend the value of the new low-con EN6 look with that specific use case. I'd hazard to guess that most people are more concerned with how the app they're running in the foreground looks, even if the UI design of an underlying background app may look more distracting than they would prefer.

 

Your points are well taken. And they make sense.

 

 

However monochrome sidebar is the same in finder, mail, contacts, reminders... And just about every apple app...

 

So only thing I don't understand is how you can be on-board with Yosemite UI but not with Evernote's integration of the same principles.

 

 

 

Oh don't get me wrong, I there are very few instances where I find monochrome sidebars acceptable. In fact, I'm hard pressed to think of a single example. I use Mail.app every day, but the monochrome sidebar still drives me insane, nearly as much as it does in Finder. Even though I singled out the Finder, I think Apple is wrong about this UI convention, wherever it happens to use it.

 

But the argument here (well, at least my argument) is that just because Apple does it, doesn't make it right. Uncritically mimicking these conventions only makes it compliant with Apple's current design preferences. But the fact is, Apple has made a LOT of UI mistakes which it later changed its mind on.

 

I think that most of the disgruntled EN6 users here are just annoyed that Evernote's UI/UX team seems to be just blindly following the latest "fads" in OS X UI design, giving more weight to aesthetics, without giving much thought as to how these aesthetic changes affects the usability of their product. And then when we complain about it, Evernote points its finger at Apple, in so many words saying "well if we're wrong about the new UI, then I guess you're all saying that Apple is wrong, tool!"

 

I think a lot of us would agree that Apple is wrong about a lot of things, as far as UI goes, and we wish that Evernote's design team would recognize that fact, and design for what's right for the usability of the Evernote app, and not for 100% compliance to the Yosemite HIG.

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But Evernote should not BE all about adhering to Yosemite principles. It should be about adhering to Evernote principles.

 

Otherwise they are ignoring the fact that a large, and significant, proportion of their user base is NOT using Yosemite.

 

Nowhere do they say that Yosemite is a requirement (if they did, they would probably lose a lot of their users), and the app needs to look good AND work properly on Mavericks at least, and probably on earlier OSs as well.

 

That is a VERY good point, but again has a logical answer.  :)

 

 

Mavericks shared many similarities... They used the same grayscale side menu.. albeit without translucency. Infact so did all of apple's offerings all the way to snow leopard (released 2009-5 years ago).

 

Apple has been Very consistent with this.

 

For all the critique of apple... We seem to all be using MACS....

 

Furthermore as a fairly recent MAC convert, and still using PC's with Windows...

I can say from the UI front they are lightyears ahead of all competitors.

 

If you consider Windows multi-coloured UI superior, I dont have much to say...

 

For me Windows is completely ugly compared to OSX...

 

This is from a aesthetical point of view AND Functional...

 

If you dont agree.. I wonder why you insist on using a MAC running OSX...

 

If you follow the apple forum's one of the biggest and consistent complaints with Yosemite is changing the green button to full screen mode instead of smart zoom... This is a testament that apple users dont like apps taking up full screens... They Use many apps simultaneously. And the hollistic experience is important.

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@Mel:  Well, if you don't think the Finder is a good example to compare Evernote to, what app do you think could/should be used as a model?

Please post a screenshot of the app you like best in Yosemite.

 

BTW, I have updated my post with the Finder screenshot after having removed TotalFinder.

 

 

 

EN Mac 6.0.2 does not do any of these nearly as well as the Finder.  So when it is claimed that Evernote is just "following" Apple, it seems to me that they have fallen way short.

 

What's horrible about this statement is that--despite my overall approval of the new Yosemite UI conventions--I think a lot of people would agree (including John Siracusa) that the Finder still remains the one major UI blunder Apple made in Yosemite.

 

Saying that Finder does anything better than Evernote 6 is a rather scathing indictment of the Evernote 6 UI.

 

 

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I will however make one concession that I just realised...

 

In Mission Control... 

 

All apps looking the same, can pose a problem...

 

Even though we have app icons... Its not so nice going into mission control and seeing: "white documents" for:

 

Word

Mail

PDF's (preview)

Excel

safari

AND Evernote getting mixed up in the whiteness of it all....

 

Mission control is becoming slightly less intuitive by this lack of differentiation. (i.e. takes me slightly longer to click on the one I want)

i.e. I can spot Spotify immediately since it is black, in misison control.

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If you follow the apple forum's one of the biggest and consistent complaints with Yosemite is changing the green button to full screen mode instead of smart zoom... This is a testament that apple users dont like apps taking up full screens... They Use many apps simultaneously. And the hollistic experience is important.

 

 

Good point, however, as far as this specific complaint goes, Apple did not remove Smart Zoom functionality from the green button. They just changed its default behavior (alt-clicking the green button performs the original Smart zoom behavior). Even Apple recognized in this instance that they HAD to give users a choice in this regard, even though they boldly decided to change the fundamental default behavior of a UI control that longtime Mac users expect.

 

I mentioned in another post that CocoaTech added the ability to restore colored sidebar icons in the recently released Path Finder 7. It's a simple Appearance toggle in the PF7 preferences. Path Finder 6 "followed" Apple's sidebar conventions back when Lion came out, and was ostensibly hoping/expecting/wondering that users would get used to the new UI convention. The appearance of the new Appearance option in Path Finder 7 seems to indicate that in the long run, this was not a popular design decision, and as such they are now giving users a choice in the way the sidebar looks.

 

"Opinionated Design" is a valid software-deisgn philosophy. But it's not appropriate for all types of products. Evernote is one of them. No doubt a lot of people like this new EN design (or at least they think they do...much like how I thought I "liked" the monochrome sidebar when Lion was first released), but obviously a much larger group of die-hard Evernote users don't like it. But Evernote doesn't seem to be interested in giving users the same kind of "choice" that even Apple acknowledges it needs to offer its users, in regards to fundamental UI conventions.

 

It's a rather concerning state of affairs. The fact that Evernote--without much good reason--removed account switching from it's web clipper , does not instill a lot of confidence that they are sensitive to the needs of "power users" (aka the very users that made their product what it is today)

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If you follow the apple forum's one of the biggest and consistent complaints with Yosemite is changing the green button to full screen mode instead of smart zoom... This is a testament that apple users dont like apps taking up full screens... They Use many apps simultaneously. And the hollistic experience is important.

 

 

Good point, however, as far as this specific complaint goes, Apple did not remove Smart Zoom functionality from the green button. They just changed its default behavior (alt-clicking the green button performs the original Smart zoom behavior). Even Apple recognized in this instance that they HAD to give users a choice in this regard, even though they boldly decided to change the fundamental default behavior of a UI control that longtime Mac users expect.

 

I mentioned in another post that CocoaTech added the ability to restore colored sidebar icons in the recently released Path Finder 7. It's a simple Appearance toggle in the PF7 preferences. Path Finder 6 "followed" Apple's sidebar conventions back when Lion came out, and was ostensibly hoping/expecting/wondering that users would get used to the new UI convention. The appearance of the new Appearance option in Path Finder 7 seems to indicate that in the long run, this was not a popular design decision, and as such they are now giving users a choice in the way the sidebar looks.

 

"Opinionated Design" is a valid software-deisgn philosophy. But it's not appropriate for all types of products. Evernote is one of them. No doubt a lot of people like this new EN design (or at least they think they do...much like how I thought I "liked" the monochrome sidebar when Lion was first released), but obviously a much larger group of die-hard Evernote users don't like it. But Evernote doesn't seem to be interested in giving users the same kind of "choice" that even Apple acknowledges it needs to offer its users, in regards to fundamental UI conventions.

 

It's a rather concerning state of affairs. The fact that Evernote--without much good reason--removed account switching from it's web clipper , does not instill a lot of confidence that they are sensitive to the needs of "power users" (aka the very users that made their product what it is today)

 

 

Look I didnt mind the change of the green button simply because I can double click the title bar on most apple specific apps... and get the same effect (Im not a fan of using mouse and keyboard... i.e. Alt green button.. also this is a huge extra step in expediency, whilst double clicking the title bar is not really)...

 

Problem is apps like Microsoft Word couldn't care less in updating their software to MAC standards... (Latest MS office is still from 2011, and support runs out after 5 years... Hopefully we will have a 2014 version soon.)

 

This is one of the reasons I am so happy and thankful Evernote choses to work so closely with MAC and OSX...

 

Right now (from the apps I use) Evernote and Wundrlist are the only two 3rd party apps that have implemented the double click on title bar to smart zoom.

This congruency and close working with apple I believe is a massive benefit and not a vice.

 

Also as far as features... I believe we need to ask for what we want!

I just cant fathom End-users deciding about the UI experience... There is too much to consider...

 

Its like painting the Mona Lisa... 3rd party users cant give suggestions... We would end up with a completely fragmented stick man...

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To extend your analogy - if we were given the ability for full customization of everything from the skin, the theme, the appearance, and the toolbar, then each user could have their very own version of a fragmented stickman - one that they in fact liked and wanted...

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I'd like to remind the participants here of the Forum Code of Conduct. The forums here exist so that people can discuss Evernote and its products. Comments, discussion, opinions, disagreement, criticism -- all are welcome so long as they stay constructive and more-or-less on topic, within reason (Item #4: "Don't engage in flame wars)". All members are explicitly allowed to use the reporting tool to have an Evernote employee review content that you find objectionable or contrary to forum rules. Carry on.

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@Mel:  You are correct.  I do have TotalFinder installed, and had forgotten about it.

 

Well, thanks for making that little mistake, because through that I learned about Total Finder, which I love!  One of the annoyances in Finder is not being able to quickly find a specific folder or share by color and shape.  While it's not as "purdy" as the operating-room antiseptic cleanness of the stock Yosemite finder, I'm already finding it much faster and more efficient.  And Total Finder just made a sale.

 

On the Evernote side... well... I'm still not a premium member, because they are not making my life easier at this point.  Putting aside the 'minor' issue of data corruption losing some of my notes on 6.0, the app itself is becoming less useful.  Yeah, you can say it's prettier or matches Apple design aesthetics, but what I'd like to see is things like the ability to color notes by tag, or notebooks with a shared color theme so I don't accidentally put a confidential work note (intended for a non-sync'd folder) into my home/personal notebook.  You know, use color to help me organize, not get rid of it.  

 

And by the way... on Yosemite I use the 'dark menu bar and dock' setting, which blends better with Aperture for the personal photo-editing work.  If EN is all about following the design aesthetic from apple, where's the 'Dark Mode' switch?

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I've been a user of Totalfinder for a long time.

 

Maybe there's an opening here for some entrepreneur to create an app that does for Evernote what Totalfinder does for Finder?

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I love the new look.

 

Please dont go back to the old.

I dont mind contrast improvements here and there...

 

But the new look is by far superior.

 

Great work evernote.

 

Evernote is supposed to work well with other apps... And having apps that actually work closely with apple to make a better hollistic experience really is a breath of fresh air!

Thank you.

 

I'm going to agree with Lykoz.

 

The new look is far better than what came before. It has elegance and subtlety that the previous version did not. And I would say that is partly due to the elimination of stark contrast and that 'thick' design aesthetic that I hope we won't see again for a long time, if ever. 

 

I recently had to look something up on the Macrumours forum and the 'Yosemite looks terrible' rage thread is alive and well, and people are having the same complaints. Contrast, colours, it's alleged effects on 'legibility'. I would say that this is why design in IT has been crude for so long: It is because of this kind of reaction by some users.  

 

Now the Apple team knows that both Yosemite and iOS 7 were generally well received, and the fastest adopted by far. They will have the confidence to stand by the design. I hope Evernote will not let forum complaints dictate design. The Evernote users I know have all reacted positively. But if you have 100 million users, some are going to complain. As with any new version there will be issues, and of course they should be addressed, I just hope that it will not be done by compromising the style. 

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the 'Yosemite looks terrible' rage thread is alive and well, and people are having the same complaints

 

Isn't that a self-defeating argument? If the design really WAS good, then why are so many people complaining about it, across multiple forums from Evernote to Apple, Macrumours to Twitter, and on the App store.  Once again, you can't claim that just because you happen to like minimalism, that it is the RIGHT way to go - not if so many are complaining about it. "Everybody is out of step except me" is the way that argument goes.

 

And once again, we come back to customizability - give us that, and all those complaints would simply disappear. You could have grey, bland, and delicate, while I prefer "crude" coloured, and individual.

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the 'Yosemite looks terrible' rage thread is alive and well, and people are having the same complaints

 

Isn't that a self-defeating argument? If the design really WAS good, then why are so many people complaining about it, across multiple forums from Evernote to Apple, Macrumours to Twitter, and on the App store.  Once again, you can't claim that just because you happen to like minimalism, that it is the RIGHT way to go - not if so many are complaining about it. "Everybody is out of step except me" is the way that argument goes.

 

And once again, we come back to customizability - give us that, and all those complaints would simply disappear. You could have grey, bland, and delicate, while I prefer "crude" coloured, and individual.

 

 

You are overstating the issue...

 

Happy people often dont engage in forums to comment on something they like...

 

Lets look at this thread....

 

It has a following of 9 people...

 

3 people are  pro new look... 5 are against and 1 is the Evernote staff...

How is that representative of the millions who use Evernote?

 

If you send me another thread... you might find 30 people... and most of those threads include people that are on this thread... In fact most threads have similar users posting that they dont like evernote new look.

 

Still a very small sample... And obviously a biased one. I stand by the fact that most people who are happy with the new look... Or dont really care at all outnumber the complainers by huge numbers.

 

A real uproar is completely different.... Its something like iphone 6 plus bendgate issue... And users are STILL buying them up like candy...

 

Or Windows 8 initial release... Before 8.1 update... In this case users walked with their feet... The rate of windows8 purchase pre 8.1 release was less than 5%...

 

Maybe Evernote should offer an official older version... If enough people go back, More than say 50%... They should revert back to old looks...

Let the users decide in real numbers. 

That of course would be a global, epic waste of time... In money, manpower and functionality... Less than 5% of users would probably revert to the older version.

 

Let me remind you that over 80% of MAC's are using Mavericks or Yosemite... And that initial adoption rate of Yosemite was greater than Mavericks.

http://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/os-x-yosemite-adoption-rate-slightly-higher-than-mavericks/

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You are overstating the issue...

 

Happy people often dont engage in forums to comment on something they like...

 

Lets look at this thread....

 

It has a following of 9 people...

 

3 people are  pro new look... 5 are against and 1 is the Evernote staff...

How is that representative of the millions who use Evernote?

 

If you send me another thread... you might find 30 people... and most of those threads include people that are on this thread... In fact most threads have similar users posting that they dont like evernote new look.

 

Still a very small sample... And obviously a biased one. I stand by the fact that most people who are happy with the new look... Or dont really care at all outnumber the complainers by huge numbers.

 

A real uproar is completely different.... Its something like iphone 6 plus bendgate issue... And users are STILL buying them up like candy...

Well, for the same reasons you could argue just the opposite. Many users that don't like the current UI are not going to post here because they can still use Evernote. What I find interesting is the fact that there is an unusual number of people who only registered to the forum in order to file a complaint about the UI. I think that tells something. And what about the negative ratings in the App Store?

 

But it doesn't really matter what we think. At the end of the day the Evernote Management has to judge the feedback and decide how to react.

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Well, for the same reasons you could argue just the opposite. Many users that don't like the current UI are not going to post here because they can still use Evernote. What I find interesting is the fact that there is an unusual number of people who only registered to the forum in order to file a complaint about the UI. I think that tells something. And what about the negative ratings in the App Store?

 

But it doesn't really matter what we think. At the end of the day the Evernote Management has to judge the feedback and decide how to react.

 

 

The latest versions had many bugs and usability issues... Lets not confuse the app store complaints, as all UI complaints.

 

Lets also not confuse the fact that mac app store only has 600 odd reviews... of latest update...

 

And many of those of very Sour users... Giving it 1 star to skew and show their dissatisfaction.,, of UI...

 

Do you really think they believe the new Evernote update is worth 1 star? Something they use everyday in their daily lives? And dont have a replacement for?

They will easily give a random insignificant app 3 or 4 stars... But rate one of the most functional app in the app store just 1 because they are exclusively basing it on UI? Obviously I said some of them were functionality and large amount of bugs... And that can be justified.

 

This is just people being Sour so they can get their way...

 

I havent even 'rated' the new update at all...

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Well its very clear that Lykoz and Limegreen like the new UI. Don't think you are Evernote staff - at least I hope Evernote would not resort do planting comments from staff.

 

But if you are objective and read up on responses on this forum and iTunes - on average, for every 1 person that likes the new interface - there are at least 10 that do not like it. So the obvious decision is to allow user to switch colors. That change could be made in about 10 minutes by programmers. I hope Evernote staff do not use the minority voices on these forums as another excuse against changing the UI - or spinning the story further how there is a clear difference in opinion.

 

And you are right Lykoz in your last post - at the moment Evernote is something that users do not have an adequate replacement for. But as soon as there is a replacement - a large number of dissatisfied customers is going to jump ship and never look back.

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@lykoz:  Are you going to rebut every post that complains about the UI design?  I hope not.

We clearly understand that you like it a lot, and that's fine.

You made your very positive post at the top, and all over these forums.

 

But please allow others to express their opinion without a long rebuttal every time.

 

Thanks.

@lykoz: I think you are a troll. You have NO credibility with me, and I suspect, with few others here. I haven't seen anyone "liking" your posts. You clearly don't know what you are talking about. Please go bother someone else.

Holy cats. Funny how some folks seem to think those who disagree with them should simply keep quiet. And if they don't, then they must have some ulterior motive.  People who actually LIKE something about Evernote are certainly free to express their opinion, too. 

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As far as the look goes, a brief preamble:

  1. I don't think we will se a dramatic return to v.5 aesthetics. This is not something we need to fear, or a reasonable request to make (depending on which side of the fence you sit on).
  2. Evernote clearly listens to all of our ideas but only acts on those which it can effectively integrate into the broader vision for the application as instructed from "above" (e.g., libin/execs, etc). 
  3. As users, we see only very poor and non-representative snapshots of what "users want". App store reviews are not likely representative of all users. Forum users are not representative of all users (though perhaps we could represent a microcosm, at least a bit better than the app store). Your buddy isn't representative of the general user.

Number three needs some elaboration. One thing to remember is that there are 100 million users of Evernote. These users span all ages and several continents and languages. They represent an enormous number of possible use cases. They come along with a large variety of hardware-body combinations, deficiencies, and advantages. So, what does it mean to say that something is "representative of users" or that they are or are not "listening to users". Which users? The "average" user? What is the "average" user? And what about the large proportion of users that exist outside of the "average"? I'd say no such "average" or  "typical" user exists. 

 

We, as users and as people who have no data except our own anecdotes, are in the worst position to make inferences about what the "average/majority/typical user" wants (if such a user could be said to exist). Evernote is, by far, in a better position to make such inferences (where it is appropriate to do so). They have the usage data, they have the forums, they have support data, they have survey data, they have social media data. While I'm sure their picture of users is pretty blurry (as all things based on stats invariably are), it is a lot better than what any one of us has. Of course, this blurry picture is then processed through the broader Evernote agenda which is dictated from above, so the amount of that picture that actually makes it into the product is.... well... hard to determine, and impossible for us, as users, to determine. 

 

What I'm ultimately trying to say here is that it isn't terribly productive for us to try and make claims about what "everyone" wants, what the "average user" wants. Those are not things we can speak to. We can speak to what we like and don't like, and why. We are able to speak with 100% accuracy about our personal, subjective experience using the new Evernote. Articulating those ideas should be the priority here. 

 

I'm not defending specific decisions made by Evernote here. You all know I don't hesitate to criticize Evernote. I'm just saying that we should do what we can do best, which is talk about our experiences with the application. We aren't in a position to evaluate what the "average user" wants (no such user exists), nor are we in a position to evaluate how closely Evernote's application resembles the desires of that user (since we don't know those desires). 

 

So, long story short: We can't infer what others want, we can't infer how much of what others want is in Evernote's application. So lets just talk about what we want!

 

----

 

Onto what I want:

In general following Apple's general user interface guidelines seems sensible to me. I know Apple encourages that, and I can understand the desire to make an application that generally fits with the design language of the operating system and with other applications that have taken up that design language. Whether I like or dislike the Yosemite aesthetic isn't terribly relevant here (though I lean towards liking it, though it has a way to go I think, before it is fully baked), not the least because I do not think Evernote will be turning back on that design language. 

 

I think the iTunes and Finder comparisons make some good points. (Ok, while nobody spends 90% of their time in Finder, I think the point JMichael was making is that it is possible to use the Yosemite design language in a way that results in higher contrast and readability compared to EN 6.0.2). There are small tweaks that can generally improve the visibility of currently selected interface objects and delineate between interface elements, without deviating from the Yosemite aesthetic. 

 

Wunderlist is another great example. I think they have really found that sweet spot between flash and dazzle, and the minimalism of Yosemite's design language (early Wunderlist, for those who were in the beta testing days several years ago, might remember that it was originally way too heavy-handed with the flash and dazzle even in the pre-Yosemite days). 

 

In general as of 6.0.2, I think Evernote has done a pretty good job with improving text contrast all around. I just took a little tour around to try and find any pain points and didn't find anything too troubling. I'm sure someone here can dig out a sore spot for text that I've overlooked (or cannot detect). As others have pointed out, text contrast isn't necessarily the main contrast issue (At least, not as of 6.0.2). I definitely think differentiating major section of the application could be improved. On my Retina MacBook Pro, I don't have a big problem with the left sidebar. It's both transparent and a slightly darker shade of grey then the rest of the application, and this contrast, while subtle, is well reproduced by my Retina display. Testing it out on a non-retina external display suggests it isn't too bad there either. As it stands it appears to be almost identical to Mail.app which I find to be clear enough for me. Perhaps there is the possibility of increasing the weight of the separators between sidebar elements and between the sidebar and main window. This might even be made contingent on the display so that non-retina devices will have a heavier separator than retina devices. The same could be said for differentiating list view from the note below, or perhaps attempting to ensure that the alternating dark rows in list view have a different shade of grey than the note editor that appears below it so they do not bleed into each other.

Screenshot:

https://www.evernote.com/l/ABmY1QLDWBhH0ryhCWgzbl8nFc7AsVnWp4E

A dark-highlighted row is adjacent to the note editor and while there is a separator, the colours of the dark row and note editor are the same (modulating slightly due to transparency and the desktop background bleeding through). Looking at this screenshot, actually, it doesn't look like such a big deal.... 

 

 

The other element that needs some work, and I have complained about this elsewhere, is between the note title and the note body. ​Adding a divider between the title and the body could help orient users so they know where they are within the note, and distinguish between body text and title text.  I understand that the absence of a divider is likely motivated by an attempt to visually unify the title and contents, but I find that it is disorienting. In particular, if there is no note content, or the content starts several lines from the top, such as with a brand new note or a note preceded by several line breaks, it is impossible to know how much padding is between the title and the body. This makes entering the note body a bit clumsy if done with the cursor (not so bad when using the keyboard to navigate from the title to the body). Another case is if there is text in the note body that is similar in size to the note title. If the note happens to be scrolled up so that this text is near the top, it can be potentially mistaken for title text. 

Altogether I think a horizontal line under the title (or some other visual means of differentiating these elements) would be a subtle way to improve the clarity and define the structure of the note window. 

 

Some slightly less critical design suggestions:

 

There needs to be a visual indicator for local notebooks. Currently there is no way to distinguish between synced and local notebooks, except by mousing over them. This could be easily resolved by some small, persistent icon on local notebooks, or some other means of making this attribute easily known, at a glance. Shared notebooks have a persistent trio of people, I'm sure something similar could be implemented for local notebooks. 

 

Disclosure arrow needed for stacks in notebook view. While it is visually clear that a stack is a stack, it might not be self-evident that stacks can be disclosed or concealed by double-clicking when in notebook view. A small disclosure arrow or some other indicator that the user can expand this stack, might aid navigation.

 

The contextual menu for notebooks is a complete disaster. In both the Notebook View and the Sidebar, the context menu (right-click) is totally incoherent:

https://www.evernote.com/l/ABkEPZi9BN9JaqX17eaI0gbKd4CupDJr_2k

In the first example we have:

Share Notebook(Modify Sharing) - Not present in an un-shared notebookPublish NotebookNotebook SettingsDelete Notebook

The first three (or four) items in this list could all potentially contain identical controls. It is not clear how a user can infer which tasks can be performed by which menu items. If I want to share a notebook, do I click on Share Notebook, Notebook Settings, or Publish Notebook? Is not sharing part of the notebook settings? Is publishing the same as sharing or different from sharing? 

 

The context menu in the Notebook view (Second screenshot linked to above) is worse. 

Share Notebook(Manage Sharing) - Only present in shared notebooksPublish NotebookNotebook SettingsRename NotebookDelete Notebook......

In addition to the issues with the non-mutually-exclusive sharing-related menu items described immediately above, why does it say "manage sharing" instead of "Modify sharing". Is this the same as "modify sharing" in the other context menu? Why are these different?

 

Resolve the share/modify sharing menu disjuncture. If a user wants to see who a notebook is shared with, they must click on "modify/manage sharing". This information cannot be obtained from the "share note" menu item. However a user cannot actually share from the "manage sharing" pane. To do so, they have to exit that pane and click "share notebook". From share notebook they can share with new users, but they cannot determine who the notebook has already been shared with. To do this the user must then return to the "manage/modify sharing" pane. 

To make things worse, the Publish Notebook and Modify/Manage Sharing menu items actually lead to the same screen. Why do two different menu items lead to the same screen? Does this not also conflate the concepts of "publish" and "share", which Evernote seems to want to actually differentiate? (As I see it, Evernote wants "sharing" to be understood as giving access to specific users, while "publishing" is to provide public access. Certainly an acceptable distinction to make, but Evernote should avoid subsequently conflating these concepts themselves!). 

 

You could put all of the sharing and publishing stuff into the notebook settings pane. This would keep contextual menus small and tidy and provide a single dashboard where all attributes of a notebook could be modified including sharing and publishing, which may or may not be the same concept. Rather than having sharing and publishing confusingly spread across three different menu items, place sharing and publishing all here. Conceptually it is likely easier for users to know where to go to modify these settings. A user would no longer have to try and decide whether publishing and sharing are different, and attempt to reconcile the fact that if you click "share notebook" you can't see who the notebook is already shared with, you have to click on "Modify Sharing" (or, vexingly, "Manage sharing" in Notebook view) to actually see who it is shared with.

 

 

Ok I think that's it for now. 

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There have be a lot of good ideas on the design side. I wanted to say that I agree with the comments regarding Wunderlist and the design approach they took for Yosemite. It was a blend of a flatter design with what they currently had in place. They did not turn everything "shades of gray" but left color in the app where it was needed.

Evernote does have its own branding look and feel and that should translate over to the desktop. I would even suggest MORE customizable options for Premium users like the iOS apps have that allow us to setup a color and a limited background.

My suggestions are as follows:

1) reduce the toolbar height down a little

2) give us the ability to customize the toolbar completely, with the new standard icons including making search wider or smaller

3) make all the toolbar buttons and icons share the same look and feel (new note and work chat do not look like sync)

4) bring back some color, such as the trademark green, in the app. Maybe the highlight color when selecting a note or the blue dates could be green, or selecting items in the side bar

5) add a thin line separator between the note title and nite body

6) improve the contrast behind the note section so that the note stands out more from the background. Both on the individual and notebook note list views

7) use a common "sharing" button for EVERYTHING with the option to email a note, work chat, whatever. Use the Apple sharing icons

8) follow some of your design ideas on the web into the desktop if you would like to minimize the UI when needed

Ok those are my items right off the top of my head...

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Its amazing how ScottLougheed's posts always add so much value, and make so much sense.

 

Very nice post.

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You came to comment on this topic just to flame me because of an argument on another post... Bout time you showed up...

I think that BnF was posting in your defense, if you read her post a little more closely. 

 

Again, I'd urge everyone to review the Forum Code of Conduct posted earlier.

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The latest versions had many bugs and usability issues... Lets not confuse the app store complaints, as all UI complaints.

 

Lets also not confuse the fact that mac app store only has 600 odd reviews... of latest update...

 

And many of those of very Sour users... Giving it 1 star to skew and show their dissatisfaction.,, of UI...

 

Do you really think they believe the new Evernote update is worth 1 star? Something they use everyday in their daily lives? And dont have a replacement for?

They will easily give a random insignificant app 3 or 4 stars... But rate one of the most functional app in the app store just 1 because they are exclusively basing it on UI? Obviously I said some of them were functionality and large amount of bugs... And that can be justified.

 

This is just people being Sour so they can get their way...

 

I havent even 'rated' the new update at all...

You are right, the recent bugs and sync problems are much more serious than the design issue. You are also right about the fact that the relatively few users in this forum do not represent the 100+ million users. On the other hand, I think that the ones using the forum and expressing their thoughts are really using the product and therefore, I think this forum is very valuable for Evernote. I have quite a number of registrations that I don't use. I have a Microsoft Office account and have downloaded OneNote for some tests. But am I a OneNote user? No. Only Evernote really knows from the activities of user accounts who really is a user and who just has created an account for some tests. Of course, they will not tell us, I wouldn't. 100+ million sounds nice.

Therefore, I think it is quite relevant how the atmosphere in the forum is, what problems are reported and at the moment I think it is a critical situation considering the Penultimate and Mac V6.0 desasters. And one part of the V6.0 criticism is related to the UI just by counting the posts.

Anyway, I am always optimistic. The coming versions will be more stable and the design will improve. Evernote employees are heavy users as well and they will run into bugs and other problems and fix them. But they are also not representative of the 100+ million users :(.

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There are many things that I think Finder does better than Evernote, such as the highlighted menu item (background color), icon deisgn (heavier line width goes a long way... and buttons that actually feels "click-able"! -- the edit tool buttons in EN6 are just abysmal in terms of usability), and so on.

 

This crude comparison is EN vs iTunes, but the points stands.

Screen%20Shot%202014-11-24%20at%2012.36.

 

I like this comparison and Evernote could dome something similar when selecting items.  Instead of a blue highlight, maybe green or a small green bar that shows the selections.  Using green for selections VS blue would be a good simple idea.

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I just have to admire the brand new Evernote for Mac. It's amazing! 

 

Though, I've been looking for a opportunity to share an thought about Evernote. I used one notebook for my previous school-year and would like to print the whole notebook so I could store it in my bookshelf. But the printing options are limited. So if you're supposed to print a whole notebook, you could decide the header or footer, like the name of the notebook and the page number. If you're going print a single document the only options is to include "print header". Here it would be a lot better if the was an possibility to choose selective information; for instance tags, date (created or updated). And even better if you were able to choose the font of the header and the size of it as well, in other words the design/look of the print, which maybe makes this post relevant in this thread :) 

 

So to sum up:

1. Able to print whole notebooks

2. Customize the header (choose only note title, tags or/and date) and the look of it (title font, title colour)

 

In my opinion this would make Evernote even more versatile :) Thanks!

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Jackolicious - in your summing of what you understand so far from all the discussions - you basically chose to totally ignore what hundreds of users on this forum, and hundreds more on iTunes and other sites have been telling you repeatedly for the past two weeks. Which kind of makes this a pointless exercise.

The forum is just one place we gather user feedback. App reviews are another. There are many more. I appreciate all the constructive feedback people take the time to post. 

 

But Evernote should not BE all about adhering to Yosemite principles. It should be about adhering to Evernote principles.

Evernote's philosophy on this has never changed. We strive to provide the best Evernote experience for each platform. 

 

-------

 

Let's keep it constructive folks. Thanks for posting. 

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I think overall jackolicious, people have been offering constructive criticism. When a majority points out something, one must listen. And onwards we go.

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Jackolicious: I honestly believe the right thing to do would be to pull v6.0 from App Store. Not wait for Apple, but revert to a previous binary. Serving a version with data losing bugs should be unacceptable. Taking any action neccessary to prevent data loss should be a major cornerstone in building trust with your users.

 

Instead, that version has now been there for 12+ days.

 

Is some data loss acceptable? Please explain your inaction on this.

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Understanding and accepting that the design cues from Apple are becoming the norm in app design (a process I personally don't like), I can provide some positive feedback.  In my opinion, text in the interface is more readable and it "feels" more like a Mac app to me, as opposed to more of a "Windows" feel beforehand.  

 

That said, I am disappointed that this release is so buggy.  I waited for the app to load the first note in a list for a good 2 minutes!  I struggled to create a text-only note that weighed in at 342 bytes (I pasted my text in TextEdit and saved it locally to check).  

 

No I'm not running it alone... running other apps and a MAMP server, sure... but I have well over 75% of my system resources free!  There's no reason for an app like this to choke on such a minuscule note.  

 

Between personal and work notes, I find myself using Evernote constantly.  Now I am no longer confident in using the app on my Mac and will move to the iOS versions exclusively until an update is posted (hurry up and approve Apple!).  

 

If there's any information I can provide to the dev team that could possibly help to further correct any issues, I am willing to assist.  

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THIS IS SYSTEMIC:  The mass criticism and overwhelming one-star ratings seen on the new Evernote "update" is also present with their companion tablet software Penultimate, which used to be fantastic... until the recent update.  Turn on your iPad, go to the App Store and check out the same beating Penultimate is now taking with its users, including me.

 

Similar to Evernote, Penultimate was a really good note-taking program.  In fact, I've used nearly all of them but Penultimate really worked nicely, was very responsive, intuitive, nice interface, good interaction etc.  I loved it and use it as part of my daily creative and writing process.  Then the shoe dropped when my iPad updated to the newest version and it's virtually unrecognizable.  Terrible interface, functions are gone, the previous notebooks are lost and all the pages are now one long note that won't scroll, so I can't get to my notes.  And it crashes.  It also is incredibly slow, doesn't recognize the nuances of the letters as it did before, responsiveness and detail is terrible, etc.  It's a freaking mess and totally useless.  Drove me to Notes Plus and will never go back.

 

Evernote's brand is damaged and the brand loyalty will now follow.  Here's Evernote's current scorecard in App Store

 

          Evernote:  2 Stars (out of 5) of 655 ratings.

 

          Penultimate:  1.5 Stars (out of 5) of 402 ratings.

 

Wow.  It's hard to find any App with such low ratings, let alone one that used to have such a loyal, elated following.  Ouch.

 

What are you doing Evernote?  What happened?  This is obviously systemic.  It will be interesting to find out what happened inside at Evernote.

Evernote-Titanic.jpg
 

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And you didn't even mention Skitch! That poor app hasn't been updated with anything useful in an eternity (and working with it on a Windows system is absolutely atrocious). It may have good reviews but it's seemingly because a good build was produced and no one's changed the code since.

 

Edit: I'm sorry, this wasn't constructive. Skitch is a lovely app with tons of potential. I am frustrated that it continues to sit stalely on the sidelines in Evernote's product lineup.

 

THIS IS SYSTEMIC:  The mass criticism and overwhelming one-star ratings seen on the new Evernote "update" is also present with their companion tablet software Penultimate, which used to be fantastic... until the recent update.  Turn on your iPad, go to the App Store and check out the same beating Penultimate is now taking with its users, including me.

 

Similar to Evernote, Penultimate was a really good note-taking program.  In fact, I've used nearly all of them but Penultimate really worked nicely, was very responsive, intuitive, nice interface, good interaction etc.  I loved it and use it as part of my daily creative and writing process.  Then the shoe dropped when my iPad updated to the newest version and it's virtually unrecognizable.  Terrible interface, functions are gone, the previous notebooks are lost and all the pages are now one long note that won't scroll, so I can't get to my notes.  And it crashes.  It also is incredibly slow, doesn't recognize the nuances of the letters as it did before, responsiveness and detail is terrible, etc.  It's a freaking mess and totally useless.  Drove me to Notes Plus and will never go back.

 

Evernote's brand is damaged and the brand loyalty will now follow.  Here's Evernote's current scorecard in App Store

 

          Evernote:  2 Stars (out of 5) of 655 ratings.

 

          Penultimate:  1.5 Stars (out of 5) of 402 ratings.

 

Wow.  It's hard to find any App with such low ratings, let alone one that used to have such a loyal, elated following.  Ouch.

 

What are you doing Evernote?  What happened?  This is obviously systemic.  It will be interesting to find out what happened inside at Evernote.

Evernote-Titanic.jpg
 

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As far as the look goes, a brief preamble:

  • I don't think we will se a dramatic return to v.5 aesthetics. This is not something we need to fear, or a reasonable request to make (depending on which side of the fence you sit on).
  • Evernote clearly listens to all of our ideas but only acts on those which it can effectively integrate into the broader vision for the application as instructed from "above" (e.g., libin/execs, etc). 
  • As users, we see only very poor and non-representative snapshots of what "users want". App store reviews are not likely representative of all users. Forum users are not representative of all users (though perhaps we could represent a microcosm, at least a bit better than the app store). Your buddy isn't representative of the general user.
Number three needs some elaboration. One thing to remember is that there are 100 million users of Evernote. These users span all ages and several continents and languages. They represent an enormous number of possible use cases. They come along with a large variety of hardware-body combinations, deficiencies, and advantages. So, what does it mean to say that something is "representative of users" or that they are or are not "listening to users". Which users? The "average" user? What is the "average" user? And what about the large proportion of users that exist outside of the "average"? I'd say no such "average" or  "typical" user exists. 

 

We, as users and as people who have no data except our own anecdotes, are in the worst position to make inferences about what the "average/majority/typical user" wants (if such a user could be said to exist). Evernote is, by far, in a better position to make such inferences (where it is appropriate to do so). They have the usage data, they have the forums, they have support data, they have survey data, they have social media data. While I'm sure their picture of users is pretty blurry (as all things based on stats invariably are), it is a lot better than what any one of us has. Of course, this blurry picture is then processed through the broader Evernote agenda which is dictated from above, so the amount of that picture that actually makes it into the product is.... well... hard to determine, and impossible for us, as users, to determine. 

 

What I'm ultimately trying to say here is that it isn't terribly productive for us to try and make claims about what "everyone" wants, what the "average user" wants. Those are not things we can speak to. We can speak to what we like and don't like, and why. We are able to speak with 100% accuracy about our personal, subjective experience using the new Evernote. Articulating those ideas should be the priority here. 

 

I'm not defending specific decisions made by Evernote here. You all know I don't hesitate to criticize Evernote. I'm just saying that we should do what we can do best, which is talk about our experiences with the application. We aren't in a position to evaluate what the "average user" wants (no such user exists), nor are we in a position to evaluate how closely Evernote's application resembles the desires of that user (since we don't know those desires). 

 

So, long story short: We can't infer what others want, we can't infer how much of what others want is in Evernote's application. So lets just talk about what we want!

 

I would Like this 1000x if I could. Quoted its entirety because everyone should read it a second time.

 

[insert ramble; skip the next two paragraphs if you'd rather not bother]

 

Personally, I greatly disliked Evernote 5. I found the sidebar incredibly difficult to read - dark grey background with grey text? That is the opposite of contrast. The hugely detailed icons for Notes, Notebooks, Tags, etc. were distracting to me and blended muddily in with the dark grey background. This new version of EN, while mostly monochrome, is full of contrast in the areas that count. Text is BLACK on WHITE (or incredibly light grey). When it comes to contrast, that cannot be beat. I think EN 6 brings the focus to our EN content, which is the point. I'm personally very excited that Yosemite brings some uniformity to apps - I detest when they all decide they have to have a huge personality and suddenly having three apps open on my desktop has more color and shapes and flashes than a circus. I like that apps are being toned down, more reserved - the emphasis is on the design blending in. The best software design is the software that gets out of the way and brings your focus to the work you're doing. Take a 3 second glance at EN 5, then a 3 second glance at EN 6. Personally, I feel like EN 6 makes my note titles stand out more, making the information density that is Evernote much easier to navigate. I open Evernote every day for its content - not the app's design. 

 

That being said, yes, EN 6 is BRIGHT. But, so is a browser window. Websites are white white white. These forums are incredibly bright to stare at - much more so than the Evernote app. Doing a Google search - holy blinding Batman! Yet we use them every day. Someone mentioned the Adobe software as having a good UI and I vehemently disagree. I live inside Illustrator and Photoshop and the dark UI is, frankly, a pain in the tush. I stare at it for hours, then look up, and all I can see is the glaring white, minuscule text burned into my retinas. Websites with black backgrounds and white text do the same. The point I'm trying to make I guess is that it swings both ways and nothing is perfect (though I don't know that I made the point so much as just rambled on). When EN 5 came out for Mac, tons of new users flooded the forums to voice their complaints. The same can, of course, be said for EN 6 now, too. Does that necessarily mean it's a bad design? No. It happens every time. I do, also, think there's something to be said for giving it the good ol' try and waiting it out to see if perceptions change over time (though of course always being open to wise corrections like darkening the snippet text, etc. like the staff have been so far). I was incredibly displeased when EN 5 for Windows came out. If y'all want a white Evernote, look no further. White white white. And while I do still have some gripes about the design (like PDF previews in Card View that have terrible text overlays), I have grown to like the design. It's utilitarian. The design blends into the background and my ability to read and access my stored data has not changed for the worse (except for the PDF previews in Card View that have terrible text overlays) - it's improved.

 

[end ramble]

 

Alright alright, I'll stop blathering on. Here's the TL;DR summary of what I have to say:

 

What I like about the new design:

  1. The overall new look. Very clean, doesn't distract. Blends better with Windows v5 so the disparity between the two versions is no longer a distraction (as one of the probable minority who uses both daily, I thought I'd mention this is really appreciated because you probably don't hear it much)
  2. The titles of notes in any view (Snippet, Card, List) are all easy to read and scan at a glance. Major improvement over v5. Cannot, cannot, CANNOT state this enough. 
  3. Seriously, so much easier to scan the large swaths of data housed in Evernote. Focus is brought where it counts - sidebar items, note titles, note content. 

What I do not like so much about the new design:

  1. Text is a bit small for my liking. I'm one of those designers who makes the font on his/her website huge, though, so take it worth the grain of salt that it is. I also have a Retina display, so I REALLY can't whine. Still crisply legible.
  2. I miss green. I love the green in the mobile apps and do wish the desktop apps would touch on it. Does my world come crashing down without it? Nope. Moving on.
  3. I do desperately need some sort of delineation between the note title and its body. Struggling with this still. Definitely my biggest gripe, now that snippet text is darker.
  4. Icons are a bit small and thin in the note editor; they are small in the Windows version, too, but at least they're a bit fatter and easier to see. Deal breaker? Nope.
  5. It's brought out the bad side in a lot of people - some being old hats in this forum whose posts I've read many times and respected. I hate losing respect for people but this topic's done it for me for a few, across the various threads.
“If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude. Don't complain.”
Maya Angelou
 
"Life is just a short walk from the cradle to the grave, and it sure behooves us to be kind to one another along the way."
Alice Childress
 
“Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.” 
Henry James
 
I could go on and on, so I'll save you all and stop here. Text is bold in my response to emphasize that my response is solely my opinion, and by expressing it I do not call you wrong, a liar, or ignore you. At most, I have a different opinion - nothing more.
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I just want to remind everyone that this thread is specifically dealing with design aspects of Evernote Version 6.0 for Mac. NOT Skitch or Penultimate, or the broader features of Evernote Version 6.0

 

Lets stick to talking about Evernote 6.0.X for Mac, and direct any Skitch or Penultimate discussion to the appropriate threads. Likewise for the non-design related Evernote chatter. 

 

EDIT: Chirmer's post is very much on topic, she just slipped it in there seconds before I submitted this post! Thanks Chirmer!

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Chirmer, I agree with everything you say. Well stated. I think you also highlight that a lot of what goes into design is rather subjective and that design decisions are fraught with tradeoffs. 

 

 

  1. Text is a bit small for my liking. I'm one of those designers who makes the font on his/her website huge, though, so take it worth the grain of salt that it is. I also have a Retina display, so I REALLY can't whine. Still crisply legible.
  2. I miss green. I love the green in the mobile apps and do wish the desktop apps would touch on it. Does my world come crashing down without it? Nope. Moving on.
  3. I do desperately need some sort of delineation between the note title and its body. Struggling with this still. Definitely my biggest gripe, now that snippet text is darker.

 Agree about text size. It should be increased everywhere doing so is possible without massive effort. 

Green would be nice from a branding perspective and curly for the purposes of looking a bit pretty. 

Isn't it funny the almost inexplicable nature of the feeling induced by the lack of a divider between the note title and note body... I can't quite articulate the reason I dislike it, but I dislike it a great deal. 

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Chirmer, I agree with everything you say. Well stated. I think you also highlight that a lot of what goes into design is rather subjective and that design decisions are fraught with tradeoffs. 

 

 

  1. Text is a bit small for my liking. I'm one of those designers who makes the font on his/her website huge, though, so take it worth the grain of salt that it is. I also have a Retina display, so I REALLY can't whine. Still crisply legible.
  2. I miss green. I love the green in the mobile apps and do wish the desktop apps would touch on it. Does my world come crashing down without it? Nope. Moving on.
  3. I do desperately need some sort of delineation between the note title and its body. Struggling with this still. Definitely my biggest gripe, now that snippet text is darker.

 Agree about text size. It should be increased everywhere doing so is possible without massive effort. 

Green would be nice from a branding perspective and curly for the purposes of looking a bit pretty. 

Isn't it funny the almost inexplicable nature of the feeling induced by the lack of a divider between the note title and note body... I can't quite articulate the reason I dislike it, but I dislike it a great deal. 

 

 

  • Text size is logically a bit small. I personally like small so that everything fits on the screen, but I can understand a need for it to be larger.. Not everyone can see small text very well. (I use 1920X1200 resolution on my macbook pro 15 inch Thats most allowable scaled resolution... so on the Best for Retina Resolution, I actually don't find it really small at all... So I think a users settings also has an impact on this) I will say however the apple counterpart apps are a lot bigger in general....
  • Icons can be larger too like reminder/annotate/etc... Although I am ok as it is...
  • We need more space for tags... If I use half screen for evernote even on my high res scaled display, I can only see one tag, and am unable to add tags... maybe have more visible space for tags... maybe under... again this is on maximum allowable scaled resolution... On best for retina cant see tags at all without full screen app... In fact it doesnt even allow me to set evernote to half screen...
  • I would also like to see collapsable/expandable snippet view... To be able to maximise note size... Half screen Evernote is how I always use it... So it takes up a lot of my screen...  

 

Question what would you like to be green?

Green is traditional evernote colours... HOWEVER... Before we had tags etc as green on white background... That is very bad for visibility... Blue does a lot more justice from a visual point of view in my opinion.

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Isn't it funny the almost inexplicable nature of the feeling induced by the lack of a divider between the note title and note body... I can't quite articulate the reason I dislike it, but I dislike it a great deal.

Right? I can't figure out why it bothers me so much, but I am BOTHERED by it. I have terrible vertigo, and somehow it reminds me of looking out from a glass elevator down 5 floors. I NEED STABILITY IN MY ELEVATORS/NOTE EDITORS.

 

 

Question what would you like to be green?

Green is traditional evernote colours... HOWEVER... Before we had tags etc as green on white background... That is very bad for visibility... Blue does a lot more justice from a visual point of view in my opinion.

I do like blue! It stands out very well and fits within Yosemite's standards. I just have a thing for green and love how the iOS apps use it. I actually like this blue (below) from the Windows v5 app - subtle bit of color. I also like how the date is written in green. Subtle things like that. 

 

XvqG0jFMJL.jpg

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I do like blue! It stands out very well and fits within Yosemite's standards. I just have a thing for green and love how the iOS apps use it. I actually like this blue (below) from the Windows v5 app - subtle bit of color. I also like how the date is written in green. Subtle things like that. 

 

 

 

Personally I think blue is a lot cleaner, and easier to read, with regards to date, and tags... (current use of blue)

Just my personal opinion. I prefer it...

 

But yes you are right, Evernote does lose some of its trademark marketability i guess by not using green.

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Yosemite has been a bit of an acid test for apps that implement non-native or custom widgets.  Apps that have followed the Apple guidelines have and used system defaults have made the transition smoothly.  Vibrancy in particular has been hard for really customized apps to get right.

 

There's a great contrast between Mail and Evernote.  Mail can be considered a gold standard for how Vibrancy is supposed to work in Yosemite.  Mail and Evernote have extremely similar UI needs, so there're a great pair of apps to compare and contrast.

 

Here's a key point.  Vibrancy does something very specific.  It's supposed to make your personal content pop and make you aware of your personal content just beyond the boundaries of the scroll pane.  If you just throw blending effects at the wall you're not going to hit the mark at all.

 

You can see this in the way that Mail uses Vibrancy.  Mail uses opaque backgrounds for your content.  It uses Vibrant backgrounds for your ancillary content, like sidebars.  Sidebars aren't content, so they get the vibrancy background to distinguish them from content.  This increases the contrast between the ancillary matter and your own content.  Vibrancy also blends your opaquely-backgrounded content through the toolbar and column headers, adding to you awareness of what's just beyond the scroll pane.  Your content is not only opaque, but it burns through the toolbar to get to you.

 

Another key point is that Vibrancy is used to ADD contrast to your content.  It NEVER subtracts contrast from your content.  That sidebar in Mail is not content.  Vibrancy blends margins, helping you distinguish between padding and content.

 

Mail uses the system standard of solid backgrounds for selection, both in the message list and in the sidebar.  Blue is the system default, but if you choose another color in General Settings, then Mail and every other app uses that color.  This puts the user's action foremost.  This solid background has additional weight with Vibrancy, because the solid background nearly glows through the toolbar when it scrolls past the scroll pane.  This shows the user's action is being respected and emphasized, to the expense of the window chrome.  Evernote, by contrast, uses a faded blue border reminiscent of  button focus in Mavericks.  It's hard to spot and breaks system conventions—the blue border means the indicated element is not yet selected, yet Evernote uses it to indicate ​current selection.  Personally, it causes me to act uncertainly and I'm never quite sure which note is selected.  In addition, there's no indication of what notebook is selected in the Evernote sidebar.  Mail, again, uses a solid background in the vibrant sidebar to indicate selection, though it's a vibrant background because it's a vibrant panel.

 

Another thing to note is that Mail uses exactly TWO backgrounds: vibrant and opaque.  Content is opaque, and ancillary or marginal space is vibrant.  Any compromise between those two choices is an error.  Evernote uses no less than three levels of opacity.  The sidebar is the weakest opacity (which does not appear to be the native Vibrancy effect, which is a burn effect not the blur-and-blend effect Evernote uses).  The column view itself uses a slightly heavier opacity, and the selected note in the note list uses an even heavier opacity.  The overall effect is to be blurry.

 

The content panel is another point of contrast.  Mail uses exactly two kinds of content panels.  The first is the single-message panel.  The single message panel is opaque, edge-to-edge with the message list.  Note that the mailbox sidebar is hidden by default in Mail, which means the default view in Mail is 100% opaque.  The second content panel is the conversation view.  In this view, the messages are still 100% opaque but the margins between and around messages take on a vibrant background.  This adds contrast, helping you spot the dividing space between the messages in the conversation view.  The hard boundary line between the message list and the message panel is always obvious.

 

Evernote, by contrast, uses a blended background in the content panel.  This blended background isn't adding information like it does in Mail.  There's only ever one note in the content panel in Evernote, so it should be edge-to-edge flush opaque.  It might make sense to go vibrant if you have Related Notes (or "Context") visible.  In the Evernote content panel, there's a rounded border around the note body and that blended background is reminiscent of the linen background that we killed back in Mavericks with most of the skeuomorphism. It just adds noise, and makes the boundary between the note list and the note hard to see.

 

A particularly glaring fault in Evernote's use of the language of Vibrancy in Evernote is that when you scroll down the note, the note vanishes behind the blended background of the toolbar/infopanel/buttonbar thingy at the top of the note.  That is, not only is the note body not popping out through the toolbar, it's vanishing behind the background.  In an FPS game, that'd be a drawing order bug, which is particularly disorienting.  

 

There are a couple of things Evernote could do to improve things.  First, Evernote should follow Mail's lead and make content opaque.  Content should never have a blended background.  Second, reduce visual complexity.  There should only ever be two backgrounds in the app: opaque and vibrant.  Any compromise between vibrant and opaque is an error.  Third, Evernote should use the system convention of solid background for selections.  This applies to both the note and the sidebar.  Fourth, try getting rid of the margins in the content panel.  They add noise without information—Mail gets this one right.  Fifth, please just standardize on the system standard single font face.  I don't mean just matching the font, but using the system definition.  OS X has taking big strides to resolution independence, and Yosemite lets uses really tweak their fonts for accessibility, including bumping the font size and font weight up.  Evernote uses smaller fonts when people are trying to use bigger fonts.  If Evernote uses the system font definitions then people can bump the font size up in System Preferences and get the results they expect.

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[...]

 

QFT.  Very nicely said, and I second everything.  I had started to go through the OS X Design Guidelines doc, quoting sections about Vibrancy, color, font, etc., but gave up.  You put it much more clearly and succinctly.

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John Christopher Jones, on 03 Dec 2014 - 3:28 PM, said:

 

 Excellent post indeed. If they're going to follow Apple (and many think that may not be necessarily a good thing), then at least do it properly.

 

But still I harp on about customization. Your comparison between Evernote and Mail is valid - Mail has a fully customizable toolbar, a customizable layout, and generally much more user-friendly interface. Just needs a bit more colour for even faster recognition of icons, symbols, etc.  As does Evernote.

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But still I harp on about customization. Your comparison between Evernote and Mail is valid - Mail has a fully customizable toolbar, a customizable layout, and generally much more user-friendly interface. Just needs a bit more colour for even faster recognition of icons, symbols, etc.  As does Evernote.

 

 

Agree on customization.   I'm (slowly) moving over to a competitor (aesthetics are interesting to argue about, but data loss is a deal breaker...), and while one can argue the 'purity' of the Apple design, I'm getting very attached to the competitor's use of color.  I can tell what notebook/project I'm using without scan for the dark-grey text on light-grey drop-down in the menu bar.  Nice.  

 

Going back to Evernote is getting more and more jarring on my Mac Air... the translucency in Evernote is starting to work against me.  My brain is already starting to associate "If it's red, it's work.  If it's green it's personal", as that is what I have chosen in the other app that I'm giving a test run.  My desktop background changes, and I happen to have a sunset picture and a picture of leaf, so the "color scheme" of the Evernote app changes as it shows through in the sidebar and menu area, and I get confused about what notebook I'm looking at.  On my imac, which is still running Mavericks and EN5.x, I don't have the confusion, but I do miss the visual cue.

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Just got the dreaded update and jumped in  to voice my dissatisfaction with the new look. And judging from the threads about this subject, I guess I'm not alone.

 

The current design is not only bland and lifeless, but if you are sitting in a dark office it is positively unpleasant to work with. As a fairly heavy user I often have Evernote open on my desktop, but this version basically turns my screen into a 27" white lamp. I have searched desperate for a way to at least change the colour scheme or skin it, but to no avail. So I am in a situation where I have to change the way I work just to fit your update. That is not particularly user friendly, and I am not happy about it.

 

I cannot fathom what prompted your UI team to consider this a good - or even acceptable - idea. Yes, I have read the argument about following Apples UI philosophies, but you are Evernote - not AppleNote. If you must mess around with the UI, please show us the courtesy to  provide us with an option in the settings to revert to the traditional skin.

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Everything constructive that's been said in this thread is great. I would just like to point out something (okay, two somethings) that may be getting overlooked by those who support the Yosemite-style design ethics, from the point of view of a designer/typographer with aging eyes.

 

First is the issue of transparency/Vibrancy. Prior to the development of Yosemite, transparency and translucency have almost never been considered beneficial behind type. "Content" or not, type over a variegated background that the designer cannot predict (because it is dependent upon what the user has open behind it) is typically going to be harder to read than type over a solid background chosen to contrast with the type. (A variegated background chosen by the designer is not necessarily better for type to appear on, but it's at least possible for the designer to try to coordinate it.) This is a well-known premise among professional typographers. There are few instances outside of computers where you will see type over a transparent or translucent background, and most of those are situations where text is applied directly to a window or mirror without an opaque background being added. (Yes, I know that a mirror is technically not "transparent", but the human visual system perceives reflected images as though one were looking through the surface at something behind it, so from a sensory-processing perspective, it is equivalent.)

 

For type (and type-like icons) to maintain legibility against that kind of background, a good designer will normally increase line weight—that is, make the text bolder. (They also will replace finely detailed typefaces with simpler ones, but since Yosemite already calls for Helvetica, that's not really an issue in this matter.) Relative contrast of color and shade are important, but it takes a lot of fine-tuning of color adjustments to match the effect on legibility achievable by increasing boldness. Apple's Yosemite HI Guidelines do not appear to clearly address this point, however, so interface designers without a typography background are often prone to overlooking this simple solution—and Apple's designers themselves are not consistent in applying it throughout Yosemite (or iOS 7 & 8). But that is the simplest immediate change that could be made to EN 6 in the areas where lists appear over translucency: make the text bolder. The improvement in legibility for everyone would be appreciated.

 

The second thing I wanted to mention is the plight of those of us who depend upon the aging 17-inch MBPs. Yosemite-focused design, by Apple's own decrees, assumes that everyone has a Retina screen. All the fine-line details, the thin-stroke text...that all is crisp and sharp only on a Retina screen. On a standard-resolution screen, it comes out looking broken. (The App Store is a major offender in this, as the appearance of App Store pages completely switched over to Yosemite-style shortly after 10.10 was released, regardless of which App-Store-compatible version of OS X you're on—and since the App Store has been available all the way since 10.6.8, there are a lot of older machines out there that can't run Mavericks, or some even Mountain Lion, that are stuck with this visual nightmare.)

 

Every time I've commented to someone about how hard on the eyes Yosemite can be without a Retina screen, I keep getting told, "So replace it with a newer model that has Retina." Setting aside for the moment the fact that my budget doesn't permit me to just drop a grand or two on a new laptop every three to five years, I have to point out to these people that you can't get a 17-inch MBP with a Retina screen, because Apple discontinued the 17-inch line once they gave all other current laptop models Retina screens. They've never made a 17-inch Retina MBP. I'm sure that power requirements are a major factor in that decision, but regardless, there is a statistically significant number of users still clinging to 17-inch MBPs. For a lot of us, it's a matter of needing the physical size of the screen combined with the portability of a laptop. I don't give two shakes about battery life, as it's rare that I'm using my MBP somewhere that I can't plug it in—but I need to be able to take it away from my primary workspace on a regular basis. (Please don't give me arguments or "plans" for how I could use such-and-such method to keep a desktop model in my workspace and sync a laptop to it to carry around. Suffice it to say that I've looked into a lot of possible solutions and found none that meet the dual requirements of being physically suitable and being something I can afford to implement.)

 

The upshot of all that is to point out how not only is Yosemite adoption proceeding much more slowly than Mavericks adoption did, but there is a sizeable portion of the user base who will likely never move to Yosemite because of their hardware and budget limitations. My story is just one anecdote, but there's a huge number of similar anecdotes out there. (Ask your local Apple Store Genius sometime—several of them have been collecting these anecdotes.) So it's really important for a program like Evernote, which is a major component, or even the centerpiece, of many people's workflows, to maintain visual compatibility with both the old and new design guidelines. It doesn't do me any good to stay on Mavericks because my eyes can't handle Yosemite on my hardware, if the programs I depend on are all going to force the Yosemite look on me anyway.

 

So please, please, PLEASE give us the option to keep Evernote looking like a Mavericks app! My eyes, my wallet, and my ophthalmologist will all be happier that way!

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@Quantumpanda: GREAT post (and a great name too) :)

 

I should point out that I'm one of those clinging to a MBP 17" in addition to my iMacs. 

 

And your comments about the App store are spot on. It's not an app I fire up very often, so I just went to check it out - and you're right. It's light grey on white, and the text is fuzzy. And that's on my non-retina iMac 27".

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@NightStalker: Thanks. There's a long story behind the name—I've been using it online for nearly twenty years—but it's not a terribly interesting story, just a long one.  ;)

 

Something I'll mention as a specific addendum: between posting that last piece and now, I checked my installed version, saw that I was still on 6.0.1, and updated. The improvements are appreciated, but...

 

Maybe it's just my perception, but it appears that the contrast between the body of a note and its surrounding background (which presumably would be translucent on Yosemite, but is simply opaque and pale on Mavericks) is even less in 6.0.2 than it was in 6.0.1. And that's making my eyes go buggy, because I can perceive the shade difference enough to see that it's different, but it's not a strong enough difference that the edge is easy to see. (My primary eye problem is in acuity and sharpness—I have very little difficulty perceiving differences in colors themselves, but the boundaries between them are tough for me if the contrast is low.) 

 

So could we either make this surround have more contrast with the note body, or simply do away with the differently-colored surround altogether (making that entire portion of the window be the solid white note body, with possible exception of the tag-and-date header—if you put an edge line between that header and the note body)? The almost-but-not-quite-distinct difference that's there now is going to give me a headache before long. And without a clear boundary, the surround doesn't really serve any clear purpose.

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Everything constructive that's been said in this thread is great. I would just like to point out something (okay, two somethings) that may be getting overlooked by those who support the Yosemite-style design ethics, from the point of view of a designer/typographer with aging eyes.

 

First is the issue of transparency/Vibrancy. Prior to the development of Yosemite, transparency and translucency have almost never been considered beneficial behind type. "Content" or not, type over a variegated background that the designer cannot predict (because it is dependent upon what the user has open behind it) is typically going to be harder to read than type over a solid background chosen to contrast with the type. (A variegated background chosen by the designer is not necessarily better for type to appear on, but it's at least possible for the designer to try to coordinate it.) This is a well-known premise among professional typographers. There are few instances outside of computers where you will see type over a transparent or translucent background, and most of those are situations where text is applied directly to a window or mirror without an opaque background being added. (Yes, I know that a mirror is technically not "transparent", but the human visual system perceives reflected images as though one were looking through the surface at something behind it, so from a sensory-processing perspective, it is equivalent.)

 

For type (and type-like icons) to maintain legibility against that kind of background, a good designer will normally increase line weight—that is, make the text bolder. (They also will replace finely detailed typefaces with simpler ones, but since Yosemite already calls for Helvetica, that's not really an issue in this matter.) Relative contrast of color and shade are important, but it takes a lot of fine-tuning of color adjustments to match the effect on legibility achievable by increasing boldness. Apple's Yosemite HI Guidelines do not appear to clearly address this point, however, so interface designers without a typography background are often prone to overlooking this simple solution—and Apple's designers themselves are not consistent in applying it throughout Yosemite (or iOS 7 & 8). But that is the simplest immediate change that could be made to EN 6 in the areas where lists appear over translucency: make the text bolder. The improvement in legibility for everyone would be appreciated.

 

The second thing I wanted to mention is the plight of those of us who depend upon the aging 17-inch MBPs. Yosemite-focused design, by Apple's own decrees, assumes that everyone has a Retina screen. All the fine-line details, the thin-stroke text...that all is crisp and sharp only on a Retina screen. On a standard-resolution screen, it comes out looking broken. (The App Store is a major offender in this, as the appearance of App Store pages completely switched over to Yosemite-style shortly after 10.10 was released, regardless of which App-Store-compatible version of OS X you're on—and since the App Store has been available all the way since 10.6.8, there are a lot of older machines out there that can't run Mavericks, or some even Mountain Lion, that are stuck with this visual nightmare.)

 

Every time I've commented to someone about how hard on the eyes Yosemite can be without a Retina screen, I keep getting told, "So replace it with a newer model that has Retina." Setting aside for the moment the fact that my budget doesn't permit me to just drop a grand or two on a new laptop every three to five years, I have to point out to these people that you can't get a 17-inch MBP with a Retina screen, because Apple discontinued the 17-inch line once they gave all other current laptop models Retina screens. They've never made a 17-inch Retina MBP. I'm sure that power requirements are a major factor in that decision, but regardless, there is a statistically significant number of users still clinging to 17-inch MBPs. For a lot of us, it's a matter of needing the physical size of the screen combined with the portability of a laptop. I don't give two shakes about battery life, as it's rare that I'm using my MBP somewhere that I can't plug it in—but I need to be able to take it away from my primary workspace on a regular basis. (Please don't give me arguments or "plans" for how I could use such-and-such method to keep a desktop model in my workspace and sync a laptop to it to carry around. Suffice it to say that I've looked into a lot of possible solutions and found none that meet the dual requirements of being physically suitable and being something I can afford to implement.)

 

The upshot of all that is to point out how not only is Yosemite adoption proceeding much more slowly than Mavericks adoption did, but there is a sizeable portion of the user base who will likely never move to Yosemite because of their hardware and budget limitations. My story is just one anecdote, but there's a huge number of similar anecdotes out there. (Ask your local Apple Store Genius sometime—several of them have been collecting these anecdotes.) So it's really important for a program like Evernote, which is a major component, or even the centerpiece, of many people's workflows, to maintain visual compatibility with both the old and new design guidelines. It doesn't do me any good to stay on Mavericks because my eyes can't handle Yosemite on my hardware, if the programs I depend on are all going to force the Yosemite look on me anyway.

 

So please, please, PLEASE give us the option to keep Evernote looking like a Mavericks app! My eyes, my wallet, and my ophthalmologist will all be happier that way!

 

 

 

Your solution is very simple if you dont like Transparency/translucency on any Yosemite apps... OR on Evernote:

 

 

System Preferences-> Accessibility ->Display -> Reduce Transparency

 

Also try

 

System Preferences-> Accesibility -> Display -> Increase Contrast

 

Evernote has followed apple guidelines very well... This will no longer be a problem for you in any app if you dont like it on Yosemite.

This may also increase the OS speed on older systems.

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Evernote has followed apple guidelines very well... 

 

 

If that is the only reason behind this UI change - and so far it looks like it, since usability certainly hasn't improved - it doesn't earn the design team any gold stars in my book. Changes of this nature should be done for the sake of the Evernote users and not as a fashion statement to Cupertino.

 

Thanks for your suggestions though. I will try them out. Hopefully there will be an "update to fix the update" soon.

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Question what would you like to be green?

 

 

Green is traditional evernote colours... HOWEVER... Before we had tags etc as green on white background... That is very bad for visibility... Blue does a lot more justice from a visual point of view in my opinion.

 

This is a good point. I suppose I imagined UI designers with far greater creativity than me would be able to come up with something. A few places might be the tag "pill". Also, any interface elements that get highlighted when enabled, or the "Add a reminder to NOTEBOOK X" text which is currently in a light blue could potentially be made green. 

 

That being said, making any text green could be misleading as it might be confused with note links. 

While I agree with Chirmer about the green, and I don't want to speak for her, I think for me and I'm assuming for her, the desire for green is very low on the design priority list. 

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I also have a 17" MacBook Pro and see no issues with the current Evernote 6.x design.

That said, I'm avoiding retina Macs like the plague since I'd probably want one after seeing it in person.  ;)

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The new design is so horrendous that I no longer wish to use your service (at least not as a premium subscriber anymore.) I don't need to tell you what everyone else has said, but the UI is hard to see and there isn't any clear definition for the folders as contrasted against the white background. You can't just change the color scheme and say 'it's Yosemite-esque.' It needs to work. I also am having bugs like mad -- ie. I can't see my notes now.   I'm really pissed. You all should have tested this more thoroughly before wasting my time.

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Well, I think a good compromise might be to have different options available -- the designers should have considered this before releasing. 

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The bit I dislike the most, is the 'Notebooks' page.  That is the most painful on my eyes, it's just a large page of pale grey on pale grey.  I have dozens of stacks & Notebooks and your new colour scheme totally ruins this page.  All those pale grey notebooks sitting on a pale grey background looks horrendous, and ugly, as well as sore on the eyes. It's just not a nice place to work anymore.

 

I have rolled back to the previous version, and I can see now, how you want to change the appearance of the notebook icons from heavy wood to something more simple, but you got it very, very wrong and made something classy looking, into a washed out blandness. This page NEEDS some colour, and perhaps some of your brand palette could be used on the notebooks, or on the background on this page.  

 

Evernote has NEVER been ugly - why make it so now?

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Long-time Evernote user, first-time poster and all that -

 

just wanted to add another vote to PLEASE add a darker theme. There are enough people asking for one that regardless of Apple's design guidelines (and whether you agree with them or not), demand should speak for itself. I'm currently using a free account, but I would be willing to upgrade to a paid account if dark theming was available. I rely heavily on Evernote to keep track of things at work, so I wouldn't mind paying for it at this point. But if that doesn't come with an option to not make my eyes bleed when I look at my screen, I'm out. 

 

I am not on Yosemite and won't be for a while (company security configurations need time to catch up before we'll be told to upgrade), but regardless, I work in a dark office (my office-mate cannot tolerate fluorescent lights, so we usually have the overhead lighting off) and the white-on-white-on-white is terribly hard on the eyes.  

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 The new interface of Evernote for Mac is just too bright and has very low contrast, to the point of making it hard to use. It is quite a struggle for me, with my 40+ y.o. eyes, to use it for a long period of time. If you add to this the several bugs that the new version brought (v. 6.0 was awful - notes disappeared, it was almost impossible to edit some notes, and so on), you can really understand why people are complaining.
 I hope the company will listen to the users and improve the interface and fix the bugs. It would be a pity to have to move to a different service only because Evernote wouldn't listen...

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The new design is not what breaks the deal for me, but I feel compelled to post anyway on the notion that this new design is all about following Apple's design guidelines.

 

It's already been pointed out by others that Evernote does not necessarily follow Apple's design guideline (such as it is perceived by those of us just using the native apps). For instance the different approach to applying Vibrancy  and selection highlight in sidebar, where Evernote only follow their own concepts.

Here's another example regarding icons:

 

Sk%C3%A6rmbillede%202014-12-03%20kl.%201

 

Safari:

Sk%C3%A6rmbillede%202014-12-03%20kl.%201

 

Finder: 

Sk%C3%A6rmbillede%202014-12-03%20kl.%201

It does not take much explanation. These white  background icons - especially the back and forward buttons - are obiquitous in most Apple apps. 

 

My point is: Since it does not take much analysis to realise that Evernote strays as much from Apple's design guidelines as they adhere to them it is obvious that it does not really make sense defending the design choices with Apple's design guidelines.

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The only logical explanation I can find for the appalling new design - is that they are hoping to be bought by Apple.

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