February 20, 2008

If you were ever curious, the difference between "cool" and "fool" is...

by Chris Randall

Maaaaan, I dunno about Antares any more. When they put out that Kantos plug, I was like "okaaay... you guys need to stop running the UIs through committee." I mean, nice idea and all, but damn.

They just released Voice Thing (pictured above) and even gave it its own website. Truthfully, it has never occurred to me to give our products individual websites. I would like to think that's because the idea is silly, but who knows? But let's talk about the UI for this one for a minute.

While I'm certainly the first person that's gonna appreciate cartoon graphics in a plug-in (in fact, I think I'm the first UI designer to actually use cel shading, to the best of my knowledge), I draw the line, you know? I suppose you need to try everything out, but this one makes me throw up in my mouth a little bit. I don't even really care what it does. I just want to run fast in the other direction.



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Feb.20.2008 @ 2:08 PM
Yea.. it looks like a hallmark card. Reading pass that, the plug itself looks cool.

Feb.20.2008 @ 2:10 PM
C'mon CR, don't be such a curmudgeon. It's cute. Why do plug-ins have to look serious?

Feb.20.2008 @ 2:21 PM
Adam Schabtach
Actually, of the two of us, I'm far more of a curmudgeon. I just don't blog as much.



Feb.20.2008 @ 2:24 PM
The whole plugin seems to be about "character" voice emulation and morphing, so I can understand the comic-book metaphor. I wonder if it has a "Master Chief" preset? Can't say I was blown away by the audio samples they had. It seems aimed at a consumer market, so the biggest beef I would have about it is the "pro quality" blurb on its website.

The child's toy UI aesthetic actually makes me think of a bent-circuit instrument. Hmm, a series of bent-circuit plugins sounds interesting.


Feb.20.2008 @ 2:29 PM
I can maybe understand comic-looking interfaces, but you'd have to make sure it looked like good comics.

Not crappy comics.


Feb.20.2008 @ 2:35 PM
Chris Randall
Ah, yes, it's standalone, not a plugin at all. But Antares? Really? This is the sort of thing that should come out of an Indian software chop-shop.



Feb.20.2008 @ 2:40 PM
it's not a plug-in per se... which could be their rationale for a special website.

i will say that while the use of comic-book fonts and irregular pen outlines hint at whimsy, the backing color palette conjures an irrational dread... not unlike the feeling one experiences prior to vomiting.


Feb.20.2008 @ 2:41 PM
At first, I just thought it was a little odd. Then I actually found out what it was. You know when you go googling for something like pitch shifters, and you get some high ranked link to a page on Snapfiles, that points to some ad-riddled freeweb page with MSVB shareware crap (now you can sound like a chipmunk, too!!!!!)? That's basically what this is.

How the mighty have fallen.


Feb.20.2008 @ 2:44 PM
Didn't Edward Tufte say thought bubbles are an elegant way to label a function?

And no button labled "Kapowwww!" ?


Feb.20.2008 @ 2:50 PM
It's software to make your voice sound like Darth Vader when you frag people in Unreal Tournament, right? Or whatever the kids are playing these days. So you would think that the graphics would look like a video game, not a comic book.

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