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Thread: Time to make my first skin.I have some questions

  1. #1
    Maximum Bitrate tolisn's Avatar
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    Time to make my first skin.I have some questions

    Well since 1.6 is out, it’s time to start making a new skin. Since this is my fist time in making a skin for Centrafuse (I’ve done a couple for Roadrunner from scratch) and since there is no skinning program it is only reasonable for me to have many questions concerning the layout. So here it goes.

    1. Can all buttons be placed on all screens and in any position?
    (Example: placing audio control buttons on GPS screen and on the sides or placing main menu buttons on other screens like placing the media button in the gps screen ?
    2. Can pop up menus be supplemented with additional buttons (for example, add the button “planner mode-navigation mode” to the navi menu and remove it from the navigation screen.)
    3. Can indicators, labels, time and day info be placed in any screen and position.
    4. Can we design our own screens (for example a screen that is called “mysync” which when called will load a sync program.
    5. Can we control external applications by issuing commands like “sendkey” or similar. (many applications are not touch screen friendly so you need to design your own skin and use touch buttons which send commands (like “sendkey”) to control the application.

    It would be good, if a text file would be included with the install, that contained all the commands, labels, indicators and controls available.

    Sorry for the long post and all the questions. I’m a current RoadRunner user so I might be influenced by it as to the whole skinning process.

    Oh! and one more question, will centrafuse have at one time or another a fully operational skinning program. It will certainly encourage people to make their own skins and customize Centrafuse according to their needs easily.

    Thanks for taking the time to read the above

    tolisn
    The road is long but we are getting there.

  2. #2
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    I'm looking to port the iDrive skin to other front ends, and am finding it hard to understand the formats and available features of them all.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    good questions..... I'd like some more details as to what can & can't be done with skins...., a decent rundown would save a lot of trial & error, & with xml editing this would be alot of trial & error.......

  4. #4
    Maximum Bitrate tolisn's Avatar
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    bump !!
    The road is long but we are getting there.

  5. #5
    VENDOR - Centrafuse veetid's Avatar
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    The skin is not very complex, but opening the skin.xml in a text editor is overwhelming because of it's size... If you can find a XML editor that supports a grid view like the commercial version of XMLSpy, which is what I use, it drastically simplifies the process. I know there are some free ones out there....

    You basically just have images for each section, and one for the global nav. Each section and dialog is organized in the XML file. You have to specify the coordinates to tell the application what to highlight when each button is pressed, based on the images you create.

    You cannot currently add anything to the skin.xml, like new buttons or labels. They are named and static based on each section. Once you get the hang of it using a good grid view XML program and Photoshop with dual monitors, it's not that bad...

    I do want an skin editor, but we have to many other things currently on our list to get done, like stablize and optimize the application, write a user manual, add support for more devices, etc...

    I plan to talk/work with Zorro to potentially convert his skinning application to output/work with Centrafuse, but it is a lot more complex then a single page application.

    Main thing is try to find a good grid view XML application and open the skin.xml and take a look at it. I can easily see how it would seem too complex if opened in a text editor... I couldn't even skin my own application with a text editor

    I considered seperating the sections into independent files to make each xml file smaller and easy to read, but it increased the memory footprint more than it was worth...

    the key is a grid view XML application and it will all be a lot clearer... I just wish XMLSpy was free so everyone could use it. They have a free version, but it doesn't include the enhanced grid view...

    If anyone knows of a similiar free XML editor, please post some information because it really isn't that bad once you get passed trying to change the skin in a text editor, I can't imagine...

    david
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  6. #6
    Constant Bitrate djchicago's Avatar
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    I use XML Maker http://symbolclick.com, it is a free software check this out...see if this would work for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by veetid
    The skin is not very complex, but opening the skin.xml in a text editor is overwhelming because of it's size... If you can find a XML editor that supports a grid view like the commercial version of XMLSpy, which is what I use, it drastically simplifies the process. I know there are some free ones out there....

    You basically just have images for each section, and one for the global nav. Each section and dialog is organized in the XML file. You have to specify the coordinates to tell the application what to highlight when each button is pressed, based on the images you create.

    You cannot currently add anything to the skin.xml, like new buttons or labels. They are named and static based on each section. Once you get the hang of it using a good grid view XML program and Photoshop with dual monitors, it's not that bad...

    I do want an skin editor, but we have to many other things currently on our list to get done, like stablize and optimize the application, write a user manual, add support for more devices, etc...

    I plan to talk/work with Zorro to potentially convert his skinning application to output/work with Centrafuse, but it is a lot more complex then a single page application.

    Main thing is try to find a good grid view XML application and open the skin.xml and take a look at it. I can easily see how it would seem too complex if opened in a text editor... I couldn't even skin my own application with a text editor

    I considered seperating the sections into independent files to make each xml file smaller and easy to read, but it increased the memory footprint more than it was worth...

    the key is a grid view XML application and it will all be a lot clearer... I just wish XMLSpy was free so everyone could use it. They have a free version, but it doesn't include the enhanced grid view...

    If anyone knows of a similiar free XML editor, please post some information because it really isn't that bad once you get passed trying to change the skin in a text editor, I can't imagine...

    david

    So readng carefully behind the lines, what you are saying is


    to get a grid view XML program?





    or am I missing something?

  8. #8
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    I'm now using dreamweaver.... it works awsome for this sort of editing

    a really good free xml editor is visual c# express edition, FREE download from MS... much better than xmlspys free light software...

    david, I know the xml file is huge, but did you ever think of marking it up alittle?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by turbocad6
    a really good free xml editor is visual c# express edition, FREE download from MS... much better than xmlspys free light software...


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