Firefox’s New Winstripe Theme

June 10th, 2004

Kevin Gerich and Stephen Horlander’s Winstripe is the new default theme for the Windows version of Mozilla Firefox, replacing Arvid’s Qute.

Qute Theme

Qute Theme

Winstripe 0.1 Theme

Winstripe 0.1 Theme

Winstripe 0.2 Theme

Update: The new Winstripe 0.2 Theme

Personally, I think there’s two issues at hand over this current controversy:

  • Open-Sourcing Artwork
    I can understand the difficulty Ben Goodger (and the rest of the Firefox team) faced working without a proper Mozilla-compatible license for Arvid’s Qute theme. But as a fellow artist, the idea of “open-sourcing” artwork (with derivatives!) is a very tricky and controversial issue. While Arvid’s being extremely difficult, I can still see why it’s hard for him to give up his “creation” initially.

    While this may ultimately be the best possible compromise for the Mozilla Firefox team, can’t possibily be good for the future of visual artists interested in open source projects. If Qute designer Arvid could be so quickly dropped on such a high profile project, who’s next?

  • Sacrifices Towards a Unified Theme
    Keeping in mind that Winstripe is still a work in progress, the branding team still needs to decide how far they are willing to develop a unified theme. Will changes be made to both Pinstripe and Winstripe to make them respectful of both operating systems’ user interface guidelines? Right now, it feels like the Windows theme is the only one being sacrificed in the name of a “unified theme”.

Related Links:

Graduation!

June 8th, 2004

Sheridan Convocation, June 8th, 2004.
Living Arts Centre, Mississauga.

Picture with my mom

Convocation 2004 Program Book

Yay!

Graduate Exhibition at Blackwood Gallery

May 5th, 2004

As part of my 2004 graduation from the joint Art & Art History program at the University of Toronto at Mississauga and Sheridan College, one of my works is currently on display at the Blackwood Gallery in Mississauga, Ontario.

Blackwood Gallery

Where We Are Instead

by Stanley Sy. Mixed media, 2001-2004.

Artist’s Statement
Even with the best laid plans, life often takes us to a different destination.

The installation consists primarily of two layers. The top-most layer is an archive of approximately three years worth of my own bus transfer tickets from Mississauga Transit. It consists of my daily grind of my travels during my studies. Each transfer is a statistical archive of my own movements across the city, down to the exact day and time. They are chronologically ordered and methodically arranged. But they are silent. It is under these records that show the randomness of life itself. These sub-layers consist of charcoal sketches, which were later photocopied and made translucent. They are personal and private observations; memories evoking the life and personal travel unseen in the schedule. The long waits, the cold winter air, the company of other passengers – all these are part of the journey. The orange lines, reminiscent of the distinctively coloured graphic signatures outlining the Mississauga Transit bus, adds to the movement.

The bus transfers, as a means of record, may show our physical journey, but it is our personal fragments of memory that brings us to where we are instead.

Blackwood Gallery

Blackwood Gallery

Blackwood Gallery

Blackwood Gallery

Blackwood Gallery

While the exhibition was to end on May 2, it has been extended till June 6th. So if you’re curious, take a look. Gallery hours and directions are available at the Blackwood Gallery website.

Current Projects

March 6th, 2004

I’m currently working on a few new icon sets. No estimated time of arrival though due to recent computer problems and my recent bouts with sickness.

In unrelated news (or is it?), StarDock is having another GUIOlympics. It looks like they took down last year’s entries, including some exclusive Antiseptic and Sakura WB skins I made a while back.

I’m also currently working on an isometric pixel rendering of a drawing studio at Sheridan College. Oh, it’s interactive too. :P
P.S. Thanks Pachunka for the linkage! :D

Merry Christmas!

December 25th, 2003

Merry Christmas to everyone! I’m in the process of revamping this website and maybe actually add some contents soon :)

Christmas Play

October 22nd, 2003

This is for the select few who are part of our Christmas Play…

The sky isn’t always blue…

September 29th, 2003

…The sun doesn’t always shine. It’s alright to fall apart sometimes.

It was weird today. It was dark and cloudy in some parts of the sky with a strong wind. But in other parts, it was very bright, sunny and warm. Weird. Kinda like today.

Still the One

September 14th, 2003

Looks like we made it
Look how far we’ve come, my baby
We might have took the long way
We knew we’d get there someday

They said, “I bet they’ll never make it”
But just look at us holding on
We’re still together
Still going strong

GeoURL and deviantART

September 5th, 2003

On August 9th, 2003, many GeoURL users might have noticed a large influx of websites from deviantART. And for a lot of deviantART users, they probably noticed the benefits of GeoURL. How did this all start? A recap might be in order:

GeoURL is a location-to-URL reverse directory. This will allow you to find URLs by their proximity to a given location. Find your neighbor’s blog, perhaps, or the web page of the restaurants near you.

deviantART provides a central location for graphical artists to display their creations for feedback and exposure. It’s also an online art community for artists and art lovers to interact in a variety of ways.

Each of the thousands and thousands of registered users at deviantART receive a free userpage, which includes a current listing of artwork submitted (”deviations”), a blog (”journal”), an internal intra-site messaging system (”notes”), and many other features.

Friday, August 8th, 2003
deviantART completely and radically revamps their website. This was months in the making, and included an overhaul of the backend and a move to an XHTML 1.1 and CSS design. One of the new features included was the addition of adding GeoURL geographic coordinates.

Screenshot of deviantART's user settings page

The site was officially launched. But nothing happened yet at GeoURL. That’s because users were limited from logging in until the next day.

Saturday, August 9th, 2003
Users were greeted with a new geographic coordinates setting (this along with another three pages of various settings). Users were able to type in their longtitude and latitude coordinates, and in exchange, deviantART would post the required meta tags and ping GeoURL. In effect, thousands of deviantART members who logged in that day, from around the world, entered their coordinates and created a non-stop flow of pings into GeoURL.

Screenshot of GeoURL on Aug 9th

Today
While it seemed like deviantART was pumping coordinates like a some sort of spamming machine based on bulk user location profiles, each listed deviantART userpage on GeoURL was effectively entered by an individual user who went to Maporama and found out his or her own coordinates. It still boggles my mind that each “recently updated site” was a deviantART user who just figured out the whole GeoURL thing in semi-real-time. And it’s facinating to see the list of nearby cities from deviantART’s large member base.

As a deviantART user, I’ve found and talked to several members that I would have never known. There’s even one deviantART member who lives 0 miles away from me. So yes, I’ve met a bunch of new people who not only live near me, but who are also artists.

As a blogger, I have mixed feelings. It really did feel like deviantART was bombarding GeoURL. And sometimes, I miss seeing independent blogs, rather than rows and rows of deviantART members. There have been some good changes though, as GeoURL’s Joshua Schachter says that “deviantART and other bulk URLs are still being loaded, but they are not being shown on the front page“. And in the future, I’m sure more (blogging and non-blogging) sites will feature GeoURL features. Maybe we’ll even see AOL’s blog-like Journals with this feature as well. But all in all, it has been a beautiful thing, and I’m glad that Joshua’s been able to handle the load and accept all these new deviantART sites.

What is the Meaning of Life?

September 1st, 2003

The Journal of Humanistic Psychology has used a (not-so?) scientific analysis of 238 quotations by 195 different people (from Rousseau to Bob Dylan) to find an answer to this question.

The Top 10 Answers:

  • Life is to be enjoyed (17%)
  • We are here to love and help others (13%)
  • It is a mystery (13%)
  • There is no cosmic meaning (11%)
  • We are here to serve or worship God (11%)
  • Life is a struggle (8%)
  • We must make a contribution to society (6%)
  • Our mission in life is to seek wisdom/truth, and to become self-actualized (6%)
  • We must create meaning for ourselves (5%)
  • Life is absurd or a joke (4%)

From Social Studies, Globe and Mail (A14, Aug. 18, 2003).