Hi Guys. Just me, reminiscing....

Those were the days.

Friday, August 17, 2018 by RedneckDude | Discussion: Skinning

Hey guys. Just sitting here, thinking about you all, my time here, and getting old.

I have been in a lot of pain the last few years, working harder than I did before I "retired". A few health problems.

I miss the everyday goings on here at WC. Seems like there are soooooo many new names (a good thing), yet soooo many of the old timers are gone. ( A bad thing ) Shame... I know a lot of them are alive, just lost interest, lurking, maybe.

I have a very long list of who I miss. 

( Boxxi, you are number one in DX, sorry I'm not gonna get to take you down...lol )

I have several skins unreleased due to the original artist fading away. Good skins, it sucks.

Original skins? I have many, and I have 3 unfinished windowblinds just waiting. The urge is gone.

I test a bit for several skinners here. Gives me something to do, I guess....feel a bit useful.

Looking at stats I see I'm still in the top 3 in top skinners for the last 3 months, yet I haven't skinned in a while. (Dunno how that happened)

I wonder if anyone is still interested in anything other than dreams and windowblinds…..

 

I miss DesktopX badly. But if no one can get it anymore, kinda takes the wind outta your sails.

I have Master status. Why? Who knows? Truly, I never considered myself a master. I just liked doing the "art".  But I feel like I lost a bunch of family sometimes.  (My best friend Wiz stands out most, but we have lost many others.)

 

Ahh, getting old sucks.

 

I want to end this by saying that I appreciate all the support over the years. This is a good place to be, here at WC.  I hope many more skinners, enthusiasts, gamers, etc. decide to become members of our clan. I may not be as visible as I used to be, maybe I'm more of a lurker, but I'm still here. I hope some of you still care if I am. Most of you don't even know me.  Sometimes, I miss being PuterDudeJim.  RedneckDude is ok, but his stats show him being a tad "newer" that the actual truth. Oldies know... 

 

Good friends, good fun, good memories.

 

First Previous Page 2 of 4 Next Last
JcRabbit
Reply #21 Thursday, August 23, 2018 4:10 PM

anotherside
What is left to do with current tech? Honest question. There are 5000+ WB skins for Windows. Maybe instead of feeling sadness, it’s better to feel “mission accomplished”.

Guys, I have to agree with him: it's been a 20 year run. 20 years is a lifetime, especially in this business.

I was 32 when I first run into WB, which eventually prompted me to start working on NextSTART and on creating Winstep. I'm 52 now - so much has changed between then and now.

Uvah
Reply #22 Saturday, August 25, 2018 6:42 AM

   I think I was the oldest newbie back in 2006 when I first signed on. Most did when they were knee high to grasshoppers. Getting started at 54 was kinda late but I did find some kind of niche. First SMX then calendars, docks, etc. Thought I found my thing with Xion but that sort of petered out because of one app, rainmeter. It did just about everything. Had a good run with PS but when it went to a subscription service, even though it was cheap, it didn't quite satisfy. So now I'm working with PSP Pro (trial version) and its ok. I don't get into every day because I went back to writing my book (third time around because the originals had been lost) and I'm up to chapter six in book two. Starts out in the year 2886 and I'm up to 2891 in September. I'll admit its very complex and I had to refresh my memory a bit.

   But back to skinning. Sooner or later, hopefully sooner, I'll nail it down and start again with simple stuff. Gonna take a while but I got lots of time on my hands. One thing that's really good is the fact that since I canceled the sub with PS I can now buy up some of those master skins I've been drooling over. Those skins are, believe it or not, a really good incentive. I get one or two a month but over time they'll add up. So...back to work.  

WebGizmos
Reply #23 Saturday, August 25, 2018 7:58 AM

JcRabbit

I was 32 when I first run into WB, which eventually prompted me to start working on NextSTART and on creating Winstep. I'm 52 now - so much has changed between then and now.

And we're glad you did!  

RedneckDude
Reply #24 Saturday, August 25, 2018 8:18 AM

1MrPaul1

Hi Everybody!

Hi Dude Jim!

I miss those time too.
WC community is a really the best that I ever seen

Jim, Do you remember https://forums.wincustomize.com/318308/page/1/#replies
Yes, I do remember. It was a blast!

DaveBax
Reply #25 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 8:06 AM


My apologies if that sounds bad, but it is what is. In truth, as you oldies move on, what do we younger people have? Well, nothing.

Doesn't sound bad at all. Just your thoughts. - What do you have left. Everything that has been made for the last 18 years or so. 


So let's get it out in the open. What do you old timers really want?

It's not about what we want as it's about what the younger people here want. If not the oldest I'm close to the oldest at 73. I still upload WB's on a regular basis. (been a bit but will be uploading soon again) I have over the last few years spend hours and hours helping skinners along. However as you asked can't help younger people if they aren't here, interested, or don't care to learn skinning. There are other older people here that would be glad to help. But if no one is interested what are the older people to do? Nothing as they can't. Except for me most of the people skinning here are several years younger. If SD stays around there will still be new skins for years to come. My opinion is the cell phone has changed this entire concept of computer skinning. Not many people use a computer for daily fun use anymore. Therefore don't even have a clue of how cool one can make a computer look. 

Uvah
Reply #26 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 9:57 AM

   I know this is a dirty word to some but you can't deny it works (ugh, I can't believe I said that) advertising does have its place, I think. So...what's to be done? You can't plaster it all over the air waves or billboards hangin' out on the side of highways or even wrapped around a local telephone pole (and yeah, they still exist lol) so, how to get around the conventional. This is the rocky road most don't do, unless they got a rock crawler. and since we can't get one those, very expensive and too much for my piggy bank, we do the next best thing. I propose a contest, not just any kind though.

   There are tons of people, up there in age and some just getting started (or doin' the second go round, like me) who love games. Personally I don't do games but those who do might get their brains tickled a bit. Ok, so can certain elements of SD's most popular games (characters, backgrounds or even widgets) be merged with or somehow included in the way of themes. If you look at some of the WBs there have been some and new ones too, that kind of push the envelope. LightStar does them, Don5318 does them too. Kitty and Andrew certainly do. Pirate themes and spacey themes and season themed packs. 

   Cell phones are all the rage these days (duh). People do play their games on them but those games are somewhat lacking for obvious reasons. Then come the tablets, bigger screens, lots of real estate and more room to do stuff. Can SD do its thing with respect to tablets like they do with a computer? Don't know, I'm not a dev. Maybe a combining of the two and skinners making all the stuff that breathes life into it. So lets get real. I'm grasping at straws here because I haven't got a clue as to what's involved and I'm not quite there with PSP yet. So I guess what I'm trying say is can we as skinners get with those in the know and see where something like this can go. There will always be games of all shapes sizes and what have you and many are rather complex, kind of like a WB. So, can it be done? Or am I whistling dixie? 

DaveBax
Reply #27 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 10:23 AM


So, can it be done? Or am I whistling dixie?

No offense Ross you asked so just stating my thought. Said most of it above actually. How many new full time skinners have we had this year? A few little things added but only one that makes WB's. To clear that up he isn't new either just a past skinner (Z71 Ross) that decided to skin again. Also makes a great WB to boot. Actual new people "0"

Fact, except for work now many younger people don't sit down at a computer anymore unless they buy them to play hi tech games on such as SD has for example. 

I'm sure that SD has looked at every angle for advertising for customization on a computer as possible. 

Tablets? People walk with them and some almost get killed crossing roads looking at their tablet. Others might be home, where ever sitting with feet up using their tablet. 

Me, you and others can sit back and think about this. Doesn't change the fact there isn't any answer that will get people interest in this type of customization. 

Since I see this as an area of no return I say this. Those of us that enjoy our computers looking cool need to continue that. At least we will continue to have new WB's, Icons, Wallpaper, etc. to enjoy.

Don't know what year but it will be gone at some point as we know customization now and enjoy.

 

Uvah
Reply #28 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 12:02 PM

No offense taken. I was just rambling on. But ya know, when you come right down to it, we can petition the government for a subsidy because we're almost but not quite an endangered species.   

Sed
Reply #29 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 12:33 PM

So nice to see the peeps replying to this thread. I go back so far with you too. Have definatly had some sad moments but we are all plugging away. Sharing.   

DaveBax
Reply #30 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 12:37 PM


But ya know, when you come right down to it, we can petition the government for a subsidy because we're almost but not quite an endangered species.

   

good luck with that Ross.

JcRabbit
Reply #31 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 6:14 PM

In truth, you guys are the ones that decide the future for WC and skinning as a whole. Look around you. You already know that sites are closing left and right. In time, that will happen with WC if the thinking around here doesn't change. Think about it a bit, is that what you really want? Or do you wish to pass on these things to a younger generation?

You're looking at this backwards. When 'we' started there was no previous generation to set the example or tell us what to do. We did it because we liked to do it and applications in general and the OS itself were pretty basic in terms of aesthetics.

The problem is not the 'older generation', it's that everything these days looks 'good enough', is professionally made, and the newer generation is no longer interested in skinning it because the results will be, more often that not, WORSE than what is already there by default.

That's also the reason why shells like Litestep, etc, died and are no longer relevant. Their reason to exist no longer holds true.

Anyway, no amount of discussion on figuring out WHY people these days are no longer interested in skinning is going to change the fact that people these days are no longer interested in skinning. Utilities in general have also taken a dive - years ago there were whole sites dedicated to reviewing applications and software utilities, now all you hear about is games.

Things change. Old things die down and new things appear to take their place. Sad, sure, but it's the nature of the beast.

anotherside
Reply #32 Tuesday, August 28, 2018 7:28 PM

I think mobile was the next frontier for skinning that never materialized. It could have happened though. Sony created a "theme creator" for Android and then open sourced the framework. I think it was adopted by LG and some other big handset maker. So we had a universal way of creating Android themes that could be adopted by any handset maker.

Then came Android 8 and Google took this possibility away. Maybe it's still possible to use this if you root your phone, but no regular users are willing to to that so skinning on Android is practically dead.

This video shows what was possible before Android 8 lock-down.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6oH6BojrcM

Looks a bit like SkinStudio, doesn't it?

 

sViz
Reply #33 Thursday, August 30, 2018 1:04 AM

Hiya Jim.   Hi all. I get nostalgic about this place and all y'all rom time to time. Sometimes I get an itch to DX again, but i was always trying to one-up myself and I have already done everything I wanted to do with the program. Plus, the program is no longer available so it is what it is.

I think Jorge and DaveBax have it right, re skinning. Things change, the user experience is much different now. If Apple/MS could find a way to make a profit from skinning, sure it could make a comeback (likely in the vein of SD's MyColors exclusive brand deals) but I don't see it. The desktop is pretty much a static home base to the constantly changing web and mobile interfaces, not to mention the ever-updating OSes themselves. 

Skinning is a niche, always has been. You either love it enough to be dedicated at it or it has no bearing on your computing experience at all.

starkers
Reply #34 Thursday, August 30, 2018 5:26 AM

Yeah, skinning and desktop customisation is what brought us all here, but  at the end of the day it became a whole lot more than that... much, much more.  We became a community, a group of people who became friends and people who are there for each other.

That is what matters most here, the people who come together to create a community of like-minded individuals who share not just love of skinning but of life and the appreciation of art as a whole.

Yes, skinning has taken a hit for the worst in recent times, and that is sad to say the least, but if we are to survive as a community, we need to embrace each other, regardless of who skins or not.

Having said that, however, we need to support those who still skin and encourage those beginners who would like to have a try at it.  I mean, what's a community if we don't pull together as a team?

Sed
Reply #35 Thursday, August 30, 2018 9:50 AM

Well said Starkers  

DaveBax
Reply #36 Thursday, August 30, 2018 10:26 AM

starkers

We became a community, a group of people who became friends and people who are there for each other.

 Well that is correct. However it's a very short list compared to what it use to be. You tell me how we are going to make it long again? You can't Mark, no one can. You or any of us can say how maybe it can be done but it will end with that.

starkers

however, we need to support those who still skin and encourage those beginners who would like to have a try at it.

As far as any beginners needing help. I'm not giving myself a pat on the back however. No one has any idea of the hours I have spent helping people skin. Using PM then email. I don't need a star for that because I enjoy helping. No names mentioned but a couple here were ready to give it up except for me. SOO the help is here and if anyone what to learn to make a Windowblind look me up. Also there is someone still active I made a Startmenu template and had the slice lines on it. also included other things. This person changed their mind but it wasn't from lack of trying here. 

So words can say a lot. Said it before and now again. Skinning is dying and when you or anyone figures out how to save it let me know. I will help with making WB's for anyone. 

Another big problem is this thread. Straight up. Only a few have actually looked at it or care about it. Make no mistake about it. There are old time sand baggers here all the time. They no longer wish to be part of anything. That is there right and we can't do anything about it. 

My bottom line: Just do our best to enjoy what we still have and be thankful for it. Nothing we do will bring it back to where it was 6 to 10 years ago. People got tired of it and moved on. New people don't give a damn about buying a graphic program, learning it and skinning. To much time taken from them for Facebook, Snapchat. Twitter and all the rest. That is where most of the World is. Hell can't even watch the news around here without one or more of the social sites being mentioned.

My rant is over.

don5318
Reply #37 Thursday, August 30, 2018 10:42 AM

starkers

Yes, skinning has taken a hit for the worst in recent times, and that is sad to say the least, but if we are to survive as a community, we need to embrace each other, regardless of who skins or not.

Having said that, however, we need to support those who still skin and encourage those beginners who would like to have a try at it.  I mean, what's a community if we don't pull together as a team?

Well said Starkers, couldn't have said it better myself Mate!     

sydneysiders
Reply #38 Thursday, August 30, 2018 11:12 AM

yeah.... it's been quite a ride over the years... great fun...

I miss the days of a new vSkin on the way and all the Maxstylers waiting for graphics to start all the accessories... getting the first glimpse and starting the search for matching wallpapers and the first work in progress to do tease screenies along the way... then watch it all come together with all the accessories in all its splendor... and I add my little matching bootscreen and logon offerings...   *sigh...  miss it all... but wouldn't have the time to do it all over again now... real life catches up with us all... but lovely to have the fond memories to look back on.

So many talented skinners I've enjoyed works from over the last 14 years... (ye gads!.. has it really been 14 yrs!) and great fun with silly threads and fun antics between some fabulous people here.  Still, we get to drop back from time to time to see how people are going and check out new skins and wallpapers... and give a thought to the wonderful people we have lost forever too.... only not completely lost... they live on in the pages here... forums and galleries... they're like a walk down memory lane...  

And Jimbo... you are the definition of a Master.... I'm kinda fond of that PuterDudeJim dude too.... 

DaveBax
Reply #39 Thursday, August 30, 2018 12:04 PM

sydneysiders

And Jimbo... you are the definition of a Master....

Yes Jim what Syd said. No more talk about why you even made Master. 

All the work you did and uploaded for so many to enjoy. All the support and help you have given. You already made Master 10 times over.

Jafo
Reply #40 Thursday, August 30, 2018 6:33 PM

Skinning evolved through necessity and was sustained by critical mass.

If you remember what the 'default' skin/look was for Winamp you can understand the 'necessity' .... and same applied to Win 95/98/2000/XP [in particular].  Their 'default' was utter crap, too.

It's fair to say Windows 7 was a big reason for skinning becoming far less relevant.... and a big part of its fading, that. and the increasing scope/complexity of the OS Shell and thus such critters as Windowblinds becoming less newbie-friendly.

Actually, Winamp was the public face of main-stream skinnables .. probably more people knew/used it than just about any other skinned app.  And then it too went 'complicated' [and buggy] and people began to avoid it.

Me being a skinner for 'a fair while' I still use the old Winamp ver [2.9x] for which just about everyone did skins at one time or other.

There's always going to be die-hard devotees of skinning ... those with a critical eye on design and human interface, but by and large the hey-day is now a time in history...

 

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