Why do people still use Proteus?

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The_Tick
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Why do people still use Proteus?

Post by The_Tick »

Ok, so this needs some base rules:

1) No "OMG ADIUM RULEZ SCROTEUS DRULEZ!" posts. Those will be deleted.

2) No "OMG SCROTEUSH IS TEH WINNAR!" posts. Same deal, except I'll make fun of you first because you said WINNAR.

3) We're looking for seriousness here folks.



Alright, so I've been a long time member of the proteus forums. So long that I even used to use Proteus for about a week (if anyone is curious, this thread is why I stopped using proteus)


Now, I enjoy competition like the next person, but they haven't released much in a while. Yet some folks on this forum still use proteus, or want to use it, and it just doesn't make much sense to me.

Take this forum post for example:
http://www.defaultware.com/forums/viewt ... 567#p49567

The discussion turned into why everyone hates Adium. Obviously they don't get that the duck is a messenger bird, which was the point (I don't get the proteus app icon, it's so bla), but beyond that nobody really backs up their comments.

Anyhow, if anyone could just relay to us the why of these comments, or just anything in general that would be helpful, it would be appreciated.
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Post by Simba Cub »

I don't exactly see anything wrong with honest criticism - freedom of opinion operates.

People still use Proteus because - no offence - the UI is superior. It's better than Adiunm 1.x as it stands, providing you unify it. It's more polished, more professional and more consistent. Then there are the extras; whilst Proteus can't compete with Adium in terms of numbers, the variety and quality of the existing extras triumph. There's a loyalty aspect too I guess.

Proteus is currently stagnant. No group chat, no blocking, no custom emoticons etc. Updates are non-existant and news reports form the devs are as rare as chicken's teeth. Proteus 5 is planned for release, but the release date is yet to be announced properly - the last I heard, it was due for release sometime in September '05. I fear that Proteus may die now, due to the displayed development (or lack thereof).

Interestingly, the 4.13 release entered beta and then disappeared without a trace from the sites. All questions asking why have been ignored - I fear it may be harmful! That was months and months back; it was slated for release "within the week" initially. That's how rubbish the support and development side is.

As for "slagging off" Adium, well, it happens. Some people plain don't like it, which is understandable. It does operate both ways though - ironically I'm posting in a thread entitled "Why do people still use Proteus?".

If Proteus 5 pops up at the same time as Adium 1.x, I know enough to say that in current standing Proteus would be superior. If it's ever released.

I use both Adium and Proteus and have done for yonks, depending on which takes my fancy. I even possess a license for Proteus. Sadly Proteus 4 just doesn't cut it any more, so Adium gets more use.



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Post by Crypt »

Simba Cub wrote:I don't exactly see anything wrong with honest criticism - freedom of opinion operates.

People still use Proteus because - no offence - the UI is superior. It's better than Adiunm 1.x as it stands, providing you unify it. It's more polished, more professional and more consistent. Then there are the extras; whilst Proteus can't compete with Adium in terms of numbers, the variety and quality of the existing extras triumph. There's a loyalty aspect too I guess.

Rich::


Like you said, extras. Adium can look as good and as professional as you want so.
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Post by medicine »

I think that the main reason that people have stuck with proteus is the ui design and ui logic. You can tell when developers take great pride in a ui and when developers aren't interested in gui and just want a program that does what its told. Justin was a developer that understood GUI and so Proteus became a polish and well designed product. Adium takes a different approch with GUI ' if you don't like it customize it' for me and may others thats not really good enough. There are many apps that drip with OS X beauty and simplicity Newsfire, appZapper, TypeSet, Acquisition, to name some and I believe that in part this is what makes them successful. The design of proteus had the same result, its what made a number of people choose it over adium.

As for the Duck - Most people do understand that it is a messenger bird. Its a character a happy face not a application icon. How many successful applications can you name that have a character as its Icon. I can only state how I feel and I think the duck looks a little childish and lowers the tone of what really is a really great application. To me it says were not professional and this application is just fun. Again this is only the way I perceive it, please don't beat me :wink:

Having said all of this I have been using adium for months now and think it is a great piece of software it just lacks the elegance of Proteus. Adium is miles ahead of every competitor, keep up the great work.

p.s Sorry if this sound really negative I do use adium and I think its a great piece of software.
Last edited by medicine on Wed Feb 22, 2006 11:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Spartan »

People may still use Proteus, but I doubt many new users are picking up Proteus. I know when I first got a Mac (a little over a year ago now) I looked for a Trillian Pro type program for IM. I saw that there were three options out there, Fire, Proteus, and Adium. When I looked around at Fire, I didn't see many positive comments about it, and it generally seemed to be inferior to Proteus and Adium. So I was left with choosing between Proteus and Adium. What made me download Adium rather than Proteus? Active development, plain and simple. When I checked out Proteus, it seemed to have just been sitting there with no updates whatsoever in ages. Adium, however, was being worked on daily and constantly updated. Therefore I chose to download Adium and haven't looked back since (well, I also used iChat for a month or so but let's not talk about that :P). I really doubt many people new to OS X or suddenly needing a multi-protocol client would rather go with a (practically) dead app over one teeming with life. Old habits die hard, but the constant effort that the devs put into Adium is very very apparent.
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Post by Paul »

So what exactly is it about the Adium GUI that you dislike?
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Post by Simba Cub »

Crypt wrote:
Simba Cub wrote:I don't exactly see anything wrong with honest criticism - freedom of opinion operates.

People still use Proteus because - no offence - the UI is superior. It's better than Adiunm 1.x as it stands, providing you unify it. It's more polished, more professional and more consistent. Then there are the extras; whilst Proteus can't compete with Adium in terms of numbers, the variety and quality of the existing extras triumph. There's a loyalty aspect too I guess.

Rich::


Like you said, extras. Adium can look as good and as professional as you want so.


Well, not really. Both apps have a glass ceiling - Proteus' is above Adium's.

Of course, you could reprogram the entire UI, but I doubt that most could.

Disclaimer: I don't dislike the UI in Adium. but as a user of both for some years I can attest that the UI in Proteus has got said higher glass ceiling.



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Post by Simba Cub »

Paul wrote:So what exactly is it about the Adium GUI that you dislike?


There is no easy answer to this question without inadvertenly causing the developers some upset - so I won't. ;)

The Adium 1.x is marginally better, although not quite there yet (duh - it's not even in beta :P )



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Post by medicine »

Simba Cub wrote:
Paul wrote:So what exactly is it about the Adium GUI that you dislike?


There is no easy answer to this question without inadvertenly causing the developers some upset - so I won't. ;)

The Adium 1.x is marginally better, although not quite there yet (duh - it's not even in beta :P )



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Maybe there is just something wrong with us people from sussex :lol:
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Post by Paul »

Simba Cub wrote:
Paul wrote:So what exactly is it about the Adium GUI that you dislike?

There is no easy answer to this question without inadvertenly causing the developers some upset - so I won't. ;)

Well I see no point in criticizing the UI of Adium if you're not willing to go the full way of actually admitting what you dislike about it.

I mean, if you wish for Adium to improve on things UI wise, admit what you specifically dislike about it and then maybe the devs can improve on those points so that you like Adium more.
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Post by memark »

Personally I do believe that quite a lot could be done to improve the 'uncustomized' appearance and behaviour of Adium. I was once scared away myself by the hideous default message style, the duck and that awful sound set that hardly anyone can stand for more than five minutes... :twisted:
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Post by bgannin »

The offense is not bad if it's constructive.

What is offensive is the idea that Adium devs 'just throw things in and let users customize' whereas others (specifically Proteus) focus on polished UI.

Speaking as a dev, I make sure I not only do my best to adhere to Apple's recommendations but a personal sense of UI sensibility. I've done so in each item I've worked on. I can say the same applies to any of the devs I've also worked with, both on Adium and professionally.

Because Adium is so customizable and the focus is on this, I think the starkness is more keen. If you feel the default experience is poor comparatively, list how.
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Post by Simba Cub »

Paul wrote:
Simba Cub wrote:
Paul wrote:So what exactly is it about the Adium GUI that you dislike?

There is no easy answer to this question without inadvertenly causing the developers some upset - so I won't. ;)

Well I see no point in criticizing the UI of Adium if you're not willing to go the full way of actually admitting what you dislike about it.

I mean, if you wish for Adium to improve on things UI wise, admit what you specifically dislike about it and then maybe the devs can improve on those points so that you like Adium more.


I will not be drawn into a slanging match. The most I will say is that I'm a long term and current user of both and that the Proteus 4 GUI is more polished, more professional and more functional than Adium's.

That's an opinion.

Both apps are great in their own rights so I don't presume to offer tips to the developers. In my view, developers should lead the way in design to their own individual requirements.

It's not our place to lead.



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Post by Paul »

memark wrote:Personally I do believe that quite a lot could be done to improve the 'uncustomized' appearance and behaviour of Adium. I was once scared away myself by the hideous default message style, the duck and that awful sound set that hardly anyone can stand for more than five minutes... :twisted:

In 1.0 the default sound set is Tokyo Train Set as far as I recall, I know it's bundled with Adium anyway. Plus, I must agree. Whenever I convert people to use Adium, their usual first response is somewhere along the lines of, and I quote, "wtf is with these duck noises".

As for the duck, I believe the devs were considering using the vector ducks done by Sam:
http://adiumxtras.com/index.php?a=xtras&xtra_id=2222

I still have hope they'll include them, but I also have doubt.
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Post by evands »

Simba Cub wrote:
Paul wrote:So what exactly is it about the Adium GUI that you dislike?


There is no easy answer to this question without inadvertenly causing the developers some upset - so I won't. ;)

Being polite and being honest don't have to be at odds. This thread was started because we want honest answers from people who don't currently see Adium as being better, not because we need an ego boost or anything like that. We're asking user opinions and impressions, and that means that not only is there no wrong answer, but this is one of those rare instances where the only nonhelpful thing is to say, "I like it exactly the way it is."

Please note that I'm not promising that we'll make any changes described / requested, nor am I saying that we're going to turn Adium into Proteus or anything ridiculous like that (personally, I would see that as a significant downgrade -- but I'm biased, and I will try not to express that bias again in this context). I am promising that we'll listen and, at worst, nod, smile, and disagree and, at best, take a look at what leads you and the handful of users who appear to share this belief to feel this way... and then improve upon it.

Edit: Oh, re: sounds... I'm not completely in love with Tokyo Train Station, but it's got a great direction and I'd like to work with its author or someone else to create a similar set which is a bit better as a default (Tokyo's sounds are generally too long for mass use in my opinion). I actively dislike the default Adium set, and it will be changed for 1.0 to something better.
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Post by Crypt »

my only fault with adium is contact list organization; no matter how many groups (2 or 5) there is still not enough space but then again this is an old issue.
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Post by djmori »

IMO adium can be customized in a a way that is as "professional" and "consistent" (or even better) in the UI point of view as Proteus.
I belive that the real issue, is that adium doesnt appear to be so cool when you pull the app out of the box for the first time. I belive adium does not seem to be as "nice" and "friendly" as it could for starters... and that something devs should worry about.
An adium assitant that appears when you launch the app for the first time could be a good way to solve this; it could include several appareance packs to choose from (Message style + Contact List View + Icon Packs+ Sound Preset), and little tips (like how-to create metacontacts, address book integration stuff, etc.).


PD:

evands wrote:Edit: Oh, re: sounds... I'm not completely in love with Tokyo Train Station, but it's got a great direction and I'd like to work with its author or someone else to create a similar set which is a bit better as a default (Tokyo's sounds are generally too long for mass use in my opinion). I actively dislike the default Adium set, and it will be changed for 1.0 to something better.


I LOVE Tokyo Train Station... but something new is always good.
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Post by Zeremus X »

My opinion may be biast on account of I havent used Proteus. I did look at the site, the screenshots, extras and capabilities. I prefer Adium because of (like stated before) the new versions with fixes come out all the time. Adium is always undergoing work. In my opinion The UI did seem a little better for Proteus. Maybe its me but I had never heard of Proteus before this thread. :oops:


djmori wrote:IMO adium can be customized in a a way that is as "professional" and "consistent" (or even better) in the UI point of view as Proteus.
I belive that the real issue, is that adium doesnt appear to be so cool when you pull the app out of the box for the first time. I belive adium does not seem to be as "nice" and "friendly" as it could for starters... and that something devs should worry about.
An adium assitant that appears when you launch the app for the first time could be a good way to solve this; it could include several appareance packs to choose from (Message style + Contact List View + Icon Packs+ Sound Preset), and little tips (like how-to create metacontacts, address book integration stuff, etc.).



This may seem like a really stupid idea but I really like the way Konfabulator is set up when you first open it. All the pop ups telling you how to navigate and telling you whats going on is really helpful/cool. Just and idea though.
Last edited by Zeremus X on Thu Feb 23, 2006 1:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Bouba »

wow, I see some old faces around! Nice to hear from you guys!

I was invited to participate into this conversation so here I am!

Why doesn't Adium cut it for me??! like it was said before, the UI logic behind adium is was keeps me away from it. Many Windows applications offer the option to theme their app... a good application doesn't need to be themed. Take a look at deliciouslibrary, transmit, acquisition, itunes!! When apple bought back cassady & Green's soundjam, they actually limited the feature set and removed the theming capability... only to find out that the little application they created is now on almost any pc and on every Mac: iTunes.

I'll now tell you what I really like about proteus. (I understand that some of these might be as well on adium.. don't flame me! )

• it connects to a deamon - altough that feature brought its set of bugs and speed issue, it also allowed third party tools to connect to the deamon without having proteus running - just like ichat. I don't always need to have proteus running, although I can be online... upon an incoming message, proteus would launch. It also allows a third party extra, proteusmenu to keep track of the status in the undocumented .menu format (when you change of status, this extra expands to show you the title of the new status) it's very sweet and professional looking.

• I don't care which services my contacts use. I really don't. When I change of status, I don't want to deal with the different settings of my different services - should be an option but not by default. Also, If my contacts have more than one profile on different protocols, then the odds are that they are also using a multi-protocol chat application.. they don't care either about what protocol to use!!! The info window for that contact will not look very odd with a drawer that comes out... (The drawer makes you loose the focus over what's important in this window, and shouldn't be used in that circumstance).

• Keyboard shortcuts to control contact list appearance and behaviour (all in the command-control-x style) We can easily turn off images, turn off groups, show offline contacts, etc... Without having to dig in the preferences, play with themes..

• The way it handles status changes. Our status becomes the nickname under msn. Create new status from the contact list, modify current status without going in the prefs.

• One place to change the profile, change the picture etc... one place to control them all!! And it uses apple's interface for photo selection IF need. You can also just drop an image into the well and it won't affect your cache for apple's system (which is limited to about 10 pictures..) There could be such a menu in the toolbar to have direct access to picture change.

•Message center: I prefer the drawer over the tabs. ALthough the idea could be pushed a little more, with rollover effects, buddy pictures in the drawer (eg: the drawer in omniweb)

• Events: Nothing to say, adiums implementation over proteus is far more efficient. However, I have to say that the list that displays those events should not be the way it is right now... It should only display the events that are enabled. I like the ichat way of doing things.

• Emoticons. The emoticons in proteus are so so nice, they are well designed, beautiful!! I just love those. I don't see why I should have an interface for deactivating some of the built-in emoticons or change the shortcut to those... It's the kind of customization that I just don't need and that confuses most of the users.

• Proteus internal notification system displays more information than growl (no offense the_tick!!) And has better interaction with the user (when you click on it etc..)

• SMS forwarding: useful, although not part of the free feature set.

• Organisation of the menus (everything is well ordered and at its place)

• Status change in the toolbar and service activation/desactivation from the toolbar.
_____


Now, What I would like to see in either chat client:
contact list:
-flying contacts ala ichat or like in acquisition/newsfire. Very elegant, efficient and productive. It must seems like eye candy to most of you but this features allows to instantaneously see who has changed of status and from what status they changed it.
I'd also like to have the possibility to have rounded corners on avatars and possibly an border around them.
-A set of themes should be available, but modifiable in an interface of its own. The lambda user shouldn't have to see that... (remember the system 8.5 appearance control panel)
-User folder should be in a package format. The app will then remember the position of this package and always open this one as the default user. If another package is open, the app should load with the settings in that package. It is a multiple user system easily done.


Here we go, If I think about something else I'll let you know... I'll design the IM appl of my dreams if you bug me about it! lol
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Post by Tipo 61 »

Thank You Bouba!

That is by far the best reply I've seen so far in this thread. :)

------

Personally, I use Adium for the feature-base, not for the UI at the moment. But using the Adium 1.0 svn, I believe that by the time 1.0 is officially released, Adium will at the least compete rather well with the Proteus UI. I always refrained from using the regular window style in Adium because it was kinda ugly. However, it's my best option for dealing with a large contact list. Back when I was trying Proteus in the beginning, that was one of the attracting features; it had a nice, stock UI.

-- The default Proteus UI is clean, easy to read, and has a real 'Mac-esque' style and more importantly, *feel* to it.

-- While the default Adium contact list is also clean and easy to read, it just doesn't give you that initial OS X feel.

I think that the best way to make an app feel professional, is to make it look like it fits in perfectly and tightly with the Mac OS (after all, the people designing the Mac OS are pros!). I believe that Proteus does a slightly better job with this. Just even having the iChat style status selector (which will be in 1.0, yay!) makes a huge difference. I'm not gonna lie, the current Adium status selector is not too pretty, and I don't recall seeing too many menus in OS X that are like it, even though it's kinda sorta a default menu style in Xcode.

Having this professional look can really hit you like a placebo, and leave a much better first impression. And the first impression is really the one that counts!
:)
Last edited by Tipo 61 on Thu Feb 23, 2006 2:20 am, edited 2 times in total.
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