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Author Topic: Splinter  (Read 21626 times)
oblivion
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« on: May 04, 2012, 05:04:05 PM »

I genuinely don't know what to make of this.

Splinter claims to be a revolutionary new way to interact with Windows. It's a visually rich launcher, I guess, with a massive amount of (allegedly) simple ways to customise things.

I've been trying to persuade the author to add some words to the many, many pictures on his site but he seems to be struggling to clearly communicate the features, benefits and so forth of Splinter without getting, well, so deep into what you can do and how easy it is that you lose track fast.

He claims 15,000 hours of programming effort. It looks slick, but the videos and screenshots are, effectively, end products without much of a hint of the creation process.

The downside: .Net.

The upside: freeware.

I think he needs some users to push things around and help him pull all that potential into something that has a chance of getting non-geeks and graphics junkies enthusiastic. My view right now is that to get to somewhere useful/usable for a novice might be asking too much, but I'm just one (occasionally grumpy) guy. I've grumbled at him a bit, but maybe a few DC guys could bring a breadth of viewpoints and help him bring something that really just might be the Next Big Thing into the world...?

It's pretty clear he's lived and breathed Splinter for so long he's struggling to take the necessary step back to be able to handle the non-programming parts of the job, anyway.

Has anyone here already met this program and have any comments?
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tomos
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« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2012, 05:20:23 PM »

He posted here, just yesterday
Splinter - Turn your desktop into Wonderland

(I love the look(s) but dont think I'll be trying it, not bothered with customising much really tbh)
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oblivion
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« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2012, 05:34:34 PM »

So he did. I should have checked!

I've just tried it on my (look, don't go on about it, I know, I know) Vista machine and it just fell in a heap. <sigh> I'll take a look at the error log and let him know what failed...  Wink
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TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2012, 05:41:05 PM »

15,000 hours at 25/hours a week (assuming hobby after his day job) = upwards of 600 weeks!  ohmy

« Last Edit: May 04, 2012, 05:53:40 PM by TaoPhoenix » Logged
dmd7978
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« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2012, 05:48:40 PM »

15,000 hours at 25/hours a week (assuming hobby after his day job) = upwards of 600 weeks!  ohmy



Actually, 16-20/hr a DAY, for three years. Holidays included.
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dmd7978
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« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2012, 05:49:47 PM »

So he did. I should have checked!

I've just tried it on my (look, don't go on about it, I know, I know) Vista machine and it just fell in a heap. <sigh> I'll take a look at the error log and let him know what failed...  Wink

Well, THIS is lame, lol. Would very much like to hear about what it says. Truth is, I have never run, nor know anyone to run it on Vista. I have also, never had it, nor heard of it ever crashing on XP or 7.  I suppose I should remove the compatability for Vista listing. I just assumed if XP and 7 were all good, then Vista would be, too.

Vista?
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TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2012, 05:53:25 PM »

I have also, never had it, nor heard of it ever crashing on XP or 7.

Except sorry, it doesn't run on my copy of XP either! Sad

But then people have been telling me my machine is haunted/zombied. That's where my self appointed handle came from. ("Resident Pest")


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dmd7978
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« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2012, 06:00:51 PM »

I have also, never had it, nor heard of it ever crashing on XP or 7.

Except sorry, it doesn't run on my copy of XP either! Sad

But then people have been telling me my machine is haunted/zombied. That's where my self appointed handle came from. ("Resident Pest")




HA, well, now this is just getting silly, eh? Can you, please, tell me what you mean by "doesn't  run"? Will not launch? Get error? Not install?

I have used on dozens of XP and 7 boxes, never once had a problem. Haunted will not work for me, must fix issue, if I can.
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TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2012, 06:03:49 PM »

(Insert Melodramatic music here)
1. Install.
2. Get nice blue Orb-y desktop icon.
3. Double Click Icon.
4. Nothing at all happens.

Aka yes, completely fails to launch.

(Insert Deranged Cackling here. I pit my Haunted Machine and my Pest Nature against the best of DC! Results: Annoyed Skwire. Annoyed Mouser. I will not stop until I have annoyed you too! Muahahahaaha!!! Luv, Da Pest!)
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dmd7978
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« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2012, 06:22:36 PM »

(Insert Melodramatic music here)
1. Install.
2. Get nice blue Orb-y desktop icon.
3. Double Click Icon.
4. Nothing at all happens.

Aka yes, completely fails to launch.

(Insert Deranged Cackling here. I pit my Haunted Machine and my Pest Nature against the best of DC! Results: Annoyed Skwire. Annoyed Mouser. I will not stop until I have annoyed you too! Muahahahaaha!!! Luv, Da Pest!)

Are you sure? Can you look in the tasktray for the icon? It doesn't, actually, DO anything at launch, except place the tasktray icon
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TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2012, 06:28:36 PM »

Oho! Round 1 to the Developer! (Curses! Foiled!)
Feature tip: First Run Dialog box!

Okay, lessee...

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dmd7978
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« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2012, 06:30:03 PM »

Oho! Round 1 to the Developer! (Curses! Foiled!)
Feature tip: First Run Dialog box!

Okay, lessee...



Noted, dialog box, check.

From there, you want to set Windows to show icon and notifications, so it doesnt get hidden, which will be a hassle, as you have to do a few things with that icon. Now, right click it and click New. Name and save the splinterface. So, then, you are able to right click it icon again and add a page. (just a standard Win wallpaper). After that, you can right click again and begin adding triggers. With trigger, right click it, go to splicon, and then select a 32bit png file. The right side of the dialog box is where the image will end up, the left is where it will start. Three sets of variables will adjust how it "opens"(which is called splanime). Set number of frames and fps, click okay, then click the trigger to see the splanime. You can drag any file, folder, or app onto that image to hot link it.
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tomos
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« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2012, 06:33:38 PM »

Portable version starts okay here in Win 7 (shows in the tray). Not sure where to take it from there, but I'm closing down now so will try look at it again tomorrow
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« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2012, 06:35:57 PM »

Portable version starts okay here in Win 7 (shows in the tray). Not sure where to take it from there, but I'm closing down now so will try look at it again tomorrow

Okay, thanks tomos. Just look at the post above yours for the next steps.

Or the following link will show you step by step dock creation

Splicon Dock Image/Text Tutorial
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TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2012, 06:44:42 PM »

New problem: Failure of Utility-Imagination.
I'm a utilitarian at heart. So I'm stuck trying to decide what this does for me (besides fun eye candy!) this does for me better than the usual windows icons on a desktop. I tend to work on a flat black background, so I don't use wallpaper flippers.

Edit: But then I'm a boring old pest not worthy of your vision. :/
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dmd7978
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« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2012, 07:03:58 PM »

New problem: Failure of Utility-Imagination.
I'm a utilitarian at heart. So I'm stuck trying to decide what this does for me (besides fun eye candy!) this does for me better than the usual windows icons on a desktop. I tend to work on a flat black background, so I don't use wallpaper flippers.

Edit: But then I'm a boring old pest not worthy of your vision. :/

HA, no problem. To tell truth, I used to be flat black background guy as well. The idea is that Splinter allows the desktop background/"page"/wallpaper and the desktop icons/splicons to be "one in the same".

It all depends on how you want it to look. If you want it to be "just" a wallpaper that can be clicked, splicons give the ability to seamlessly integrate into any background. Without knowing Splinter was running, you wouldnt be able to tell a splicon apart from the rest of the wallpaper. As an image is an image, anyone can begin to associate any app or file with ANY image, doesn't have to be what "they" make it to be. You don't read "internet explorer" below the IE icon to know what you are clicking, just know the image represents IE.

If you wish to have artistic background with "icon-y" looking icons, it allows for them to integrate perfectly, by allowing you to "fit" the icons, into the scene, like for example, standard looking icons placed and positioned "within" the display case of the bat cave.

If you want it to be a "high tech gui" looking thing with docks and stacks and such, it allows you to create it EXACTLY how you want it to look, it isn't hampered by the template of standard docks, as they are all pre-made, for the most part only allowing for slight adjustments of their look.

If you want to have it look JUST like the current desktop, only have the added option to hot link multiple file or app openings at once, it is as easy as a right click and the linking of them. Triggers can be any image, too. So they can be standard looking icons. Which allow to be dragged without restriction, can hot link multiple files, and have bonus benefit of opening up splicons, if you choose.

Splinter's ONLY purpose, is to give the end user access to information links(apps/media/files/folders/webpages/etc) that would previously not be available within a seamless looking, fully customized background/desktop environment. Splinter is, at its core, just a hot-linker that makes your "wallpaper" hot-linkable, by having blended splicons. This means that you can have information links to multiple locations without having them "clutter" up the destkop, if you wish.
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TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #16 on: May 04, 2012, 07:13:03 PM »

Hmm. Thank you for the nice response!

I currently have 85 items on my desktop. They're laid out in thematic semi-conceptual groupings spaced visually across the desktop in mixes of rows and columns, with several strays.

Some 60 of those are folders. So if those folders are already "1-click" I'm still lost what Spinter does for me - I would need to spend a lot of work encoding all those items and I'm not even sure what background would make sense except MAYBE the Tron Legacy ones.

But Lemme say this, a few threads back, I bewailed "what hath become of innovation", I'll give you the chops for innovating. My (semi) deal is this: Lemme think, on something you can implement with less than 15,000 hours of effort, that feel useful to me.

/Quick Ruthlessly Ugly App/Feature: Just Click randomly on your desktop and start typing a memo, your choice of font size and color, but not "encased" in anything, with ability to maybe Hide/Show and move it around so when you move your folders around you move your text memos. Edit: Double Click to Hide - Show.When it "Hides" it becomes one of those little Splotchy things.

NSFW: (Am I the only one that moves my icons to accomodate a nice busty babe as wallpaper!?  Cool    )
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dmd7978
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« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2012, 07:33:48 PM »

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSwktZ7lYrA" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSwktZ7lYrA</a>

This is the spli-script that runs it. (The first "command is actually the Tron logo splicon opening which does not need to be in the script, as it is the trigger's own splicon. That is why the delay is the first script command). The way I see it, if something like this is this easy to make happen, why not have the ability to do so.



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TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #18 on: May 04, 2012, 07:45:48 PM »

Naw Awesome effort guy, really it is, that doesn't still do anything for me... I'm sayin, I'm thinkin' ... What do you think of Text Typing Items that collapse into those little purple spiders?
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dmd7978
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« Reply #19 on: May 04, 2012, 07:51:52 PM »

Hmm. Thank you for the nice response!

/Quick Ruthlessly Ugly App/Feature: Just Click randomly on your desktop and start typing a memo, your choice of font size and color, but not "encased" in anything, with ability to maybe Hide/Show and move it around so when you move your folders around you move your text memos. Edit: Double Click to Hide - Show.When it "Hides" it becomes one of those little Splotchy things.

NSFW: (Am I the only one that moves my icons to accomodate a nice busty babe as wallpaper!?  Cool    )

Well, it COULD be, that Splinter would not be for you. I mean, if you are actually happy with 85 icons, 60 of them folders on the desktop, always looking the same and being completely "separate" and un-integratable into any and all wallpap----wait, that is it. It is the black background. I TOTALLY know what you mean, as I said, I used to be that way. First 15 years of my desktop experience, black background. I just see it differently now. (But I find it hard to believe that you 100% WANT EXACTLY 85 icons on screen at all times. Wouldnt you prefer, to have either more, or less? If less, then some current ones could be hidden as splicons and then opened when you wished. If you wished to have 150 links available, then could have those new ones hidden the same way. ) - Perhaps not, as other apps can perform that particular function, and so it surely wouldn't be for you, I think. I don't pretend it will. But I believe that Splinter would improve your desktop if it were judged by random end users, and so, that is probably what counts, for me. I will keep trying to make it work for everyone, though, that is the whole idea.

 But, also, the desktop environment doesnt have to JUST be utilitarian. Interactive stories, wiki databases, spli-sites, etc, can all be created with it.There is no other way, on Earth, to experience something like a media driven splinterface. It is the interactivity and hot linking to web info that makes these things unique and FUN to experience.

The desktop environment, with Splinter, is the most diverse and capable medium there is. More so than film, more so than video games, more so than the internet. Because it blends all of these together. It is capable of bringing them all to YOU, into your realm. Instead of having to immerse into the game or film "world" and having to go OUT to get access links to data over the net. It is all placed into your environment and things play off your customized desktop.

Anything Can Be Anything, within your UDE, is as simple a way to say it as there is.

 Now, about this.----
/Quick Ruthlessly Ugly App/Feature: Just Click randomly on your desktop and start typing a memo, your choice of font size and color, but not "encased" in anything, with ability to maybe Hide/Show and move it around so when you move your folders around you move your text memos. Edit: Double Click to Hide - Show.When it "Hides" it becomes one of those little Splotchy things.

I am sorry, I do not have any idea if this is a question or statement or if it is translated incorrectly, lol. I am sure it is funny though, judging by the sentence following it.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2012, 08:04:09 PM by dmd7978 » Logged
TaoPhoenix
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« Reply #20 on: May 04, 2012, 08:01:35 PM »

Hmm. Thank you for the nice response!

/Quick Ruthlessly Ugly App/Feature: Just Click randomly on your desktop and start typing a memo, your choice of font size and color, but not "encased" in anything, with ability to maybe Hide/Show and move it around so when you move your folders around you move your text memos. Edit: Double Click to Hide - Show.When it "Hides" it becomes one of those little Splotchy things.

NSFW: (Am I the only one that moves my icons to accomodate a nice busty babe as wallpaper!?  Cool    )

Well, it COULD be, that Splinter would not be for you. I mean, if you are actually happy with 85 icons, 60 of them folders on the desktop, always looking the same and being completely "separate" and un-integratable into any and all wallpap----wait, that is it. It is the black background. I TOTALLY know what you mean, as I said, I used to be that way. First 15 years of my desktop experience, black background. I just see it differently now. (But I find it hard to believe that you 100% WANT EXACTLY 85 icons on screen at all times. Wouldnt you prefer, to have either more, or less? If less, then some current ones could be hidden as splicons and then opened when you wished. If you wished to have 150 links available, then could have those new ones hidden the same way. )

 Now, about this.----
/Quick Ruthlessly Ugly App/Feature: Just Click randomly on your desktop and start typing a memo, your choice of font size and color, but not "encased" in anything, with ability to maybe Hide/Show and move it around so when you move your folders around you move your text memos. Edit: Double Click to Hide - Show.When it "Hides" it becomes one of those little Splotchy things.

I am sorry, I do not have any idea if this is a question or statement or if it is translated incorrectly, lol. I am sure it is funny though, judging by the sentence following it.

Again thank you for replying!

So let's see here... I like my 85 items, because they do 85 things, into about 40 new things in the cases of the folders. So I wouldn't really want to expand it much over 100, except for a little clarity in a totally overloaded folder.

Less? Not really - I'm not really a fan of the google-Esque "let's mash 7 menu items worth of options under a gear wheel" approach.

And none of it is funny - I do want to be able to just randomly type text objects that are like 1-3 day reminders that I can drag around like any other desktop object. (Amazing how rare that is for a simple concept!) (Well except the NSFW moving icons part.) But none of the rest is funny - it's an app/feature. He Who Builds The Feature Wins. See Mouser for my rant about when the World's Leading Screen Capture Utility failed to (as of X build, later fixed by the generous graciousness of Mouser) cover the single low level use case I actually used.

Whew! A Lot of words!



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dmd7978
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« Reply #21 on: May 04, 2012, 08:12:48 PM »

Hmm. Thank you for the nice response!

/Quick Ruthlessly Ugly App/Feature: Just Click randomly on your desktop and start typing a memo, your choice of font size and color, but not "encased" in anything, with ability to maybe Hide/Show and move it around so when you move your folders around you move your text memos. Edit: Double Click to Hide - Show.When it "Hides" it becomes one of those little Splotchy things.

NSFW: (Am I the only one that moves my icons to accomodate a nice busty babe as wallpaper!?  Cool    )

Well, it COULD be, that Splinter would not be for you. I mean, if you are actually happy with 85 icons, 60 of them folders on the desktop, always looking the same and being completely "separate" and un-integratable into any and all wallpap----wait, that is it. It is the black background. I TOTALLY know what you mean, as I said, I used to be that way. First 15 years of my desktop experience, black background. I just see it differently now. (But I find it hard to believe that you 100% WANT EXACTLY 85 icons on screen at all times. Wouldnt you prefer, to have either more, or less? If less, then some current ones could be hidden as splicons and then opened when you wished. If you wished to have 150 links available, then could have those new ones hidden the same way. )

 Now, about this.----
/Quick Ruthlessly Ugly App/Feature: Just Click randomly on your desktop and start typing a memo, your choice of font size and color, but not "encased" in anything, with ability to maybe Hide/Show and move it around so when you move your folders around you move your text memos. Edit: Double Click to Hide - Show.When it "Hides" it becomes one of those little Splotchy things.

I am sorry, I do not have any idea if this is a question or statement or if it is translated incorrectly, lol. I am sure it is funny though, judging by the sentence following it.

Again thank you for replying!

So let's see here... I like my 85 items, because they do 85 things, into about 40 new things in the cases of the folders. So I wouldn't really want to expand it much over 100, except for a little clarity in a totally overloaded folder.

Less? Not really - I'm not really a fan of the google-Esque "let's mash 7 menu items worth of options under a gear wheel" approach.

And none of it is funny - I do want to be able to just randomly type text objects that are like 1-3 day reminders that I can drag around like any other desktop object. (Amazing how rare that is for a simple concept!) (Well except the NSFW moving icons part.) But none of the rest is funny - it's an app/feature. He Who Builds The Feature Wins. See Mouser for my rant about when the World's Leading Screen Capture Utility failed to (as of X build, later fixed by the generous graciousness of Mouser) cover the single low level use case I actually used.

Whew! A Lot of words!





No need to thank ME, thank YOU.

The text typing, will, likely, never be integrated into Splinter. But Splinter, due to its fundamental hotlinking ability, is able to integrate ANY other desktop application into a splinterface. It isn't wise to try to do better what other apps were designed to do. Splinter does what it is designed to do best, access information. And it is able to do that, in part, when other apps whose features are not Spli-specialties, are integrated into splinterfaces.

Just like it does with Win Explorer. It doesn't interfere or go around, it just bosses it around and tells it how, more efficiently and effectively, access, locate, store, and share thngs, and Explorer obeys. EVERYTHING, within the desktop interface, other than the shell I guess, is 100% revolving around hot linking. Even text typers file launchers are locating the files the same way. An arrow pointing to where you want to go or what you want to get. Add to that list, the desktop background now able to be thought of just like a large, multi-linkable icon. It is the ability to link to things, in NUMEROUS new ways that Splinter does. That is all, really. Nothing more.

It uses hotlinking to create new ways to hotlink.

---Edit --- MAYBE some type of text typing would be implemented, don't know. Probably, I guess. I suppose it would be a very small memory layer and so would be foolish not to do it. However, it isn't NECESSARY, as it can just hotlink to "launchy" or whatever it is called. I have never been into the typers, is all.

Splinter DOES do this, kind of. Just does it as a preset typed link. In script tab, just type name of any file on pc, and when clicking that trigger, it will open it. Not the "exact" same thing, as there is the extra step of having to click "ok" in order to close dialog box and then click trigger.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2012, 08:41:00 PM by dmd7978 » Logged
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« Reply #22 on: May 04, 2012, 08:58:44 PM »

Well there you have it, we have formed a UN pact of non-Aggression, however my one use case isn't yet covered. No intent to "guilt" here, just that I have seen a couple of times now that a super-high-end program sometimes misses the "low level apps". Conceptually, it's not tough. If my background is Black, my text should be White and Yellow. Just type. It makes an object. Maybe Scroll Bar to toggle font size. Then you click out, and click to drag it.

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« Reply #23 on: May 04, 2012, 10:08:02 PM »

I think that Splinter may not matter, to you, at all, if you are not also interested in the appearance of the desktop, as in being able to make it appear however you wish. Because you can get the functionalities it has, differently, by using other apps. Splinter only allows everything to 'come together", to all be part of the "same experience". When I say that Splinter allows for the integration of all other apps into the 'splinterface", I just mean a seamless desktop environment, not something above the desktop.

It is about making it all one "thing". Lke the wallpaper is not separate frm the icons which are not separate from the apps they open or the files that display information, etc. For me, it is much more immersive/comfortable experience when I am able to work with something getting close to the "everything interface". To me, it improves utilitarian aspects when I am not "pulled" from one thing and "put" into another.

And your request is a good one. I used to love that about linux shells. I will implement something very much along exactly the lines that you are talking about, actually. I just realized that the ability to open up a splicon that appears as any number of glowy text displays below the text, is ideal for this feature. Still, unless you care about appearance, wouldn't matter, as visuals are 98% of Splinter, due to the visual aspect EXPANDING the utilitarian abilities.
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« Reply #24 on: May 05, 2012, 03:38:01 AM »

I get the impression from the above that one possible use of Splinter would be to have a rapid ability to switch between desktop environments. So instead of having everything you frequently use in one place, all the time, you could define a desktop for, I dunno, gaming, another for work, another for surfing... allow for all the crossover that happens between those things too. If I'm reading this stuff right, then an important marker of difference between the standard Windows desktop and Splinter could be that a "Splinter Desktop" isn't just a wallpaper, it's a wallpaper with embedded functionality. So if you can switch to a new desktop by choosing it off a pane of available desktops you can also be changing your working environment entirely, not just the way it looks.

Or am I still misunderstanding what this is supposed to be about?
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