[Design-devel] Looking for colors to identify Debian releases

Christoph Biedl debian.axhn at manchmal.in-ulm.de
Sun Oct 23 11:41:45 UTC 2016

Jonas Smedegaard wrote...

> Hi Christoph (cc design list - please subscribe if not already),

Now done.

> Fun idea!  I am not aware of anything like this existing already.
> Yes, please throw more details - that might help encourage input from 
> others!

Thanks for the encouraging words.

Basically, I need this for two purposes:

Colored shell prompts in chroots that hold the respective distribution.
Terminals however, at least the older ones, do have a tight constraint
on the number of available colors, 16 or even eight.

Graphs created by the mentioned tools. They can utilize the full 24 bit
color set but still should be usable for people with (slight) visual
impairment. These colors should resemble the respective low-res color
where possible. And they should work well when drawing a line on a
white background as gnuplot and rrdtool do.

In the end there might be nothing but a small table in the Debian wiki
like (all numbers but for jessie are made up):

| The following colors are recommended to describe individual releases:
| Distribution  ANSI color code   hi-res color
| (...)
| squeeze       1;34              #223344
| wheezy        1;35              #334455
| jessie        1;36              #489191
| stretch       0;31              #556677(*)
| buster        0;32              #667788(*)
| bullseye      0;33              #778899(*)
| sid           1;30 or 0;37      #101010 or #f0f0f0
| (*) Tentative, to be determined in the artwork contest before the release

Note sid is always some black or white to mark its constant state, and
there are two colors so it's visible on both light and dark
backgrounds. Although on a second thought I'm not sure whether we
should rather provide separate sets of colors for both background

Other tasks are determining the colors as a part of the artwork
contest, and spreading the data through technical means, the obvious
place was distro-info-data.

For low-res colors reusage is inevitable so choose at least six to have
one as a spacer.

All that's left to do from my point of view was to define these colors,
for the past, back to buzz. As I'm not very confident in my design
abilities, I wouldn't want to do this on my own, or with some amiable
feedback only.

> Perhaps an easy start was to implement as base16 themes?
> I am considering a) packaging base16 for Debian, and b) try make a GTK+ 
> theming engine tied to it.  Having release-oriented color schemes would 
> be a fun option for that :-)

Quite frankly, I don't see how base16 fits into this. It still
might be something to look into when it's about to find palettes or
ways to describe them in a technical way.


PS: Next thing was to do the same for architectures. Although you'll
    never get easy-to-read graphs if you put some 28 lines of data
    into one, like it is done in the popcon statistics.
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: signature.asc
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 819 bytes
Desc: Digital signature
URL: <http://lists.alioth.debian.org/pipermail/design-devel/attachments/20161023/fd9e2051/attachment.sig>

More information about the Design-devel mailing list