GnuCash splash image

Geert Janssens janssens-geert at
Thu Aug 2 06:57:35 EDT 2012

Hello Hisham,

Nobody seems to have given feedback to your designs so far, so here is mine.

Disclaimer: I'm a developer with interest in design, but not a designer. 
As such I consider my authority on design matters limited.

Before moving on to the designs, I'd like to add some comments to your 
introductory mails:

On 08-07-12 12:22, hishamza wrote:
> Hello, all.
> I'm quite new to GnuCash (and personal finance management for that matter)
> and I've found it to be very useful.
I'm happy to hear this. I hope you continue to use and enjoy it for a 
long time still.
> I felt that the original splash screen of GnuCash was a bit of a throw off
> that did not convey how much business oriented and powerful GnuCash really
> is.
I agree that the current splash screen is a bit flat, though already 
fresher than what we had before that. GnuCash is indeed powerful, but I 
would be careful to claim GnuCash is business oriented. It was in the 
first place designed with personal accounting in mind, and later on some 
business features were added. These work fairly well for small 
businesses, but are lacking a lot for larger companies (as a recent 
discussion on gnucash-user pointed out once again). So it would be good 
if the design somehow could convey just that: accounting for personal 
and small business needs, but certainly not large businesses.
> So, I've had a go at making an alternative one which is quite minimal in
> design:
> I hope everyone likes it. Comments and constructive criticisms are welcome.
I have looked at your designs a couple of times now. What follows is a 
reflection of what they invoked in me. Surely don't consider it as 
absolute metrics.

IMO they are clean and well done. Perhaps a bit flashy for a tool that 
is mostly used to track finances. For me the strong colours used induce 
associations with "powerful", but also with "wild", "lively", and 
"adventurous". While the first quality is good, the others are not what 
you would want for an accounting package. It mainly has to be reliable 
and efficient. Personally I have a little trouble finding that in your 

It can be modern as your designs are. The GnuCash's interface and 
reports are not at all modern though, so I feel there is a dissociation 
between the expectations the splash screen induces and the actual tool. 
In the same way I don't see much connection with the style used on the 
GnuCash website, which was recently completely redone by Cristan Marchi 
(and which I consider a big improvement on the older design).

Personally I would love to see more unity in the several graphical 
aspects of the GnuCash "brand" (for lack of a better word). I'm talking 
of websites, splash screens, documentation layout, report templates, the 
whole thing. This is a lot of work and I don't expect this to be done 
all at once. This may require a separate design discussion which I would 
be very interested in. And I hope others too.

But back to your splash screen proposal: before I would use it, I would 
like to see it harmonize better with the GnuCash website. This may 
require changes/improvements to both your design and the website. 
Perhaps Cristian can add his feedback and ideas in this regard as well.

Again, this is only my opinion and mainly intended to open a discussion 
on design in GnuCash. Hopefully others will chime in too. Let's see 
where this all leads to.


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