Desperately seeking non-translucent menus

Discussion in 'Apple' started by Nephilim2038, Oct 4, 2005.

  1. Nephilim2038

    Nephilim2038 Guest

    Howdy. I'm a longtime (1989) Mac user who finally made the jump to
    OS-X by replacing an ageing blue and white G3 with a Mac Mini.

    I love love love it! But a few elements of the interface make my eyes
    water - literally. One is the dock magnification -- the icons
    ballooning up and floating around cause serious eye strain for some
    reason. Too bad, since it's "cool." But it's easily turned off.

    Another somewhat distressing element is the transparency of the menus.
    I don't know why, but my eyes wig out (that's a technical term =)
    trying to discern the pattern underneath, distracting me from the menu
    options being presented.

    I was idly hoping Fruitmenu would have a control for the translucency
    of the menu, but it doesn't. As far as I can see, you can't change
    that setting via any preference pane that comes with the OS. Probably
    a silly thing to get worked up about, but it does represent a place
    where an aesthetic decision made by Apple interferes a bit with my
    enjoyment and perception of the usability of the system.

    Is there some way to alter (ie get rid of) the translucent menu effect?
    Perhaps some nifty command-line setting I could alter, so I'd feel
    special typing it in? Heh. Or a utility ... or a resource edit ...
    Nephilim2038, Oct 4, 2005
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  2. Wow, you're right -- you can see through them a little. Never noticed
    that before!
    Jerry Kindall, Oct 4, 2005
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  3. D'oh! Sorry ... I hope it doesn't start to bug you now.
    Jeff Thompson, Oct 4, 2005
  4. Nephilim2038

    Thomas Harte Guest

    As far as I'm aware there is no particular simple way to do this. The
    best advice is to head over to and find a
    theme that is based on Aqua but omits transparency. Some free software
    for applying GUI themes is available at .

    There used to be a theme around called "Grey Aqua" that was literally
    just ordinary Aqua without any transparency, but it seems to have
    vanished. Hopefully one of the Aqua derived themes at macthemes will
    suit, otherwise there seem to be hundreds of these things strewn over
    the internet if Google is to be trusted...

    Thomas Harte, Oct 4, 2005
  5. Nephilim2038

    Jon Aalborg Guest

    I keep my dock rather small and use a tiiny degree of magnification just
    to let me see where the mouse is hovering. I quite agree that letting
    the icons ballon all over the place is quickly outgrown.
    I have to say that I think this is literally in the eye (or the brain)
    of the beholder. ;-) It has never bothered me, not even in previous Mac
    OS X versions where it was a lot more pronounced than now (in
    10.4/Tiger). I have to concentrate hard to actually notice the
    transparency. I have no advise other than to get used to it, really. It
    beats me how the hassle and potential risks of installing any haxie to
    'fix' that could be worth it - but that is just my opinion. :)
    Jon Aalborg, Oct 4, 2005
  6. Nephilim2038

    TaliesinSoft Guest

    I find that I don't need the magnification at all as the text above the
    currently moused-over dock icon makes it obvious where the cursor is.
    TaliesinSoft, Oct 4, 2005
  7. Nephilim2038

    Jeff Wiseman Guest

    And when the mag is high, anytime you go to put something in the
    trash the trash can jumps around trying to get away from you :)
    Jeff Wiseman, Oct 4, 2005
  8. Nephilim2038

    Jon Aalborg Guest

    Which is why I keep it small - just enough to see a small movement when
    the pointer moves. But this is clearly a matter for personal
    preferences. :)
    Jon Aalborg, Oct 4, 2005
  9. Does that even when the mag isn't high. Infuriating. Whose brilliant idea was it
    to have to chase icons?
    John Rethorst, Oct 4, 2005
  10. Nephilim2038

    Jeff Wiseman Guest

    Likely an unplanned side effect from a marketing decision.
    Jeff Wiseman, Oct 5, 2005
  11. Nah, I forgot about it again shortly thereafter. ;)
    Jerry Kindall, Oct 5, 2005
  12. I'm not sure what the slash effect is, myself.

    I read some bragging on ArsTechnica that the Dashboard Widgets will
    make ripples when they were dropped into place, but I don't see that.
    Is that the splash effect? I would've thought that a spanking new Mini
    would have a good enough video card to support the special effects that
    Tiger wants to give me. Am I sadly deluded?

    Re the transparent menus -- I'll live with 'em. I checked out the
    Irridium theme, and it didn't change the menu transparency, so I
    reverted back to the defacto Tiger theme. SetAlphaValue only
    frightened me, so I didn't try it. Heh.

    It's fun getting to know OS X after jumping from 9.1. I wanted to
    figure out how to do the fast user switching, just to show off the
    rotating cube effect, and it took me a while to note the 'account name'
    dropdown (right where, by all rights, the application switcher menu
    should be =)

    Anyway, how do I get my Dashboard ripples?
    Jeff Thompson, Oct 5, 2005
  13. Nephilim2038

    James Meiss Guest

    Or, pin the dock to a corner.* IMHO the dock is best placed on the side
    of a monitor (since monitors are almost always wider than tall) and
    pinned to the bottom so the trash doesn't move.

    *with for example TinkerTool
    James Meiss, Oct 6, 2005
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