A complete UI overhaul of Rhino would be a much welcomed move



I hate to mention it; but Revit has a context aware menu like this.


It’s not that hard, in Revit the context dependant part of the toolbar is to the RHS of the other toolbars. The tabs of the main toolbars remain.

(Cardi B) #149

the commandline is “good” because the GUI is so bad. Ideally the keyboard wouldn’t be needed at all.


Eeeh that’s a far-off dream. To actually do that would require cutting the number of commands down to a number that can be comfortably displayed all at once. There is simply no “GUI” system that exists that can actually efficiently handle the number of tools in Rhino, nevermind the way it’s also a development platform. Imagine trying to navigate, say, Google search without a keyboard(or a multi-billion-dollar AI for text input.) It just doesn’t work, and you can recall in the early days of the Web when people tried.


No GUI can match the speed of keyboard shortcuts and aliases.


I agree, but keep in mind that the sentence is only valid if you add a n IF to it… and that “if” is “IF you are a full time professional modeler that knows all the tools you’ll need by heart.”

But software is also for those who use it twice a month, the beginners and those who’s visual memory outperform the auditory one. For those (the majority) icons are faster than shortcuts also because they show the user a lot of tools they still don’t know and lead them to explore the software and learn even more.
I would not have learned 20 years ago all the ways we can match circles to curves if it hadn’t been for the GUI, neither would I have remembered their names as fast as I learned the icons look and placement.
But don’t get me wrong, I use shortcuts all the time, but not when I teach.


I mainly use the menus when I teach, as even with good “visual memory”, it’s hard for beginners to remember the location of all the tools that are under the flyouts. Plus the menus are classified by type of object/operation, that is always a good starting point.


I have a +10 years user experience. Haven’t used menu even once.

(Anika Boeller) #155

Hi mr. Bartletts famous quoations.
If you really think that the Rhino UI is at its best you shouldnt be a designer.
i d also preferably use commands and shortcuts for speed and viewport real estate… and just not to look at the horrible icons, bad color themes etc.
go check out some adobe software or such and feel the difference. blender has made an effort too.
rhino is pretty niche, and i think they are hurting them selves economically because lots of potential costumers are turned off by the softwares wrapping. which means they cannot invest development the way they would want to.

sometimes there is timelessness in design, but with the rhino ui that is defenitly not the case. the general framework is simple and sound. the exectution is a shot in the foot.
its like selling something with a Best before date around 1998.


Adobe GUI really stinks!!! I get hysterical every time I have to use Photoshop.
Take a second look at my context-sensitive toolbars and well-defined icon colors - they are described in this thread.

(Anika Boeller) #157

keep: command line etc… general idea
adobe is great with: the layer panel in illustrator/photoshop.
sensitive color palettes. flat design. good presets.
rhino should react to design affinities like every other software. when i was 12 i thought nu metal is cool. it is not.
photoshop, like excel, or autocad, rhinos dad, is defining software of decades. they all couldnt possibly look like 20 year ago and still be in such demand.


I do exactly the same.
Also the menu is convenient: 1 click - explore all.
The menu show the shortcuts too.
Unfortunately some commands are simply not there in the menu.

The menu would be even better if it would show icons.
Then one could learn the icons automatically.
I think it could be useful.
RMA considers the menu icons as visual clutter.
Don’t know why - the flyouts in the Apple version work like that.

One icon is found in the menu (totally meaningless):

(Tom) #159

this topic is pretty pointless and should be closed.

You can summarize it like this:

Rhino UI is old and could see some improvements. I think everyone agrees. But that’s it. The comments here are mostly not constructive, contrary, highly subjective and sometimes even offensive. Rhino user have very different backgrounds, professions, ages, cultures and workflows. McNeel should decide for themselves.

(Toshe Andonov) #160

I would disagree on closing it down. But I see your point. That’s why with my two last posts I’ve tried to push a shift in the discussion with actually constructive ideas about what I see would help me a lot and add to the value of Rhino, but I guess, people will always be bitter and throw stones.

That was my problem from the start. I wanted for people to add and discuss what changes would help them with better workflow and add to the quality of the software.

Maybe the tone of my opening post was a bit of negative. I’ll add to it about how people can be actually helpful in this thread.

Don’t close it down. McNeel needs to listen. This is a problem and we need to be heard.

EDIT: I guess I don’t have permission to edit the opening post anymore, but I’d urge people to add to the thread with ideas and not personal opinions.


The first lesson of figuring out what people want is that simply asking them doesn’t work. I mean it’ll get you something, but it’s not going to get you what you’re trying to find here.

Google has a hard time not making Gmail worse to use, and they have thousands of times the resources to work on a system that’s a thousandth the complexity to the user.

(Toshe Andonov) #162

Wow. Very constructive.

I don’t understand how you can improve a product without listening to your user-base. What are you talking about? Google?! :roll_eyes:

And I guess we are back to square one on what I and @TomTom were just discussing.
I give up. Maybe it’s for the best if this thread gets shut down after all, and watch Rhino slowly rot just because of one single front-end negligence while the software world goes on to new lengths to better it’s first-person experience.


I guess you’ve never done anything to do with user testing, focus groups?

(Toshe Andonov) #164

There is nothing to test. That’s my point. The UI has been the same old rusty thing for ages.
You can’t produce anything to test if you don’t consult your general user-base and make an effort to produce something to be tested inside a “focus-group”. People from McNeel already said that there are no plans to revamp the UI of Rhino in the “near-future”.

I’m still an optimist that they will turn-around, and rethink some things. I can understand everything regarding priorities, resources and all that, but this should also be a priority.


Change Rhino interface because of Aesthetics? For a more modern look? Not on board with that one at all!!! One of the great things about Rhino is that I can set up my UI in a way that works for me. Key board short cuts, pop up menu, command line, etc. Why should any of that be changed? IMHO Apple has changed their UI to be much worse. Things hidden, things not intuitive, things done in the back ground where you cannot see what is going on. I stopped using Macs for that reason. When you have a software (Rhino) that is used world wide, allowing the users to set it up to be used in a way that make sense for each person is the way to go.



As far as I could see from all the discussions, most of what is being asked for is already available in program for end user to set up (colors,toolbars, key maps) and the other 20-25% can be created via SDK. One time there was a Rhino pref/theme active group. I think if someone thinks their industry or specific user group would prefer a look or workflow they have set up and customized I don’t see any reason to just not bundle it as .rhp add on, and possibly then if it becomes popular why not have link to it during install a la Visual Studio where you can pick colors and key maps when first installing.
I too would rather McNeel devs spend their valuable time on many of other things that are on lists as unless I am missing something everything I’ve seen for examples in this thread is already possible via user customization and or changes made via rhinoskin.dll or simple .rhp loading and setting preferences.
Just my 0.02