Customizing the Squeak UI
Last updated at 2:56 pm UTC on 24 February 2018
Customizing Squeak's Look & Feel. See also FAQ: Look and Feel.
First, it should be known that there are two different UI's available in Squeak, Morphic and MVC. MVC (Model-View-Controller) is the original Squeak UI, it looks a bit outdated, and is no longer the default interface which Squeak starts up in. Morphic is the newer UI (see the link for details). Most of the following customizations apply for Morphic, but some will also work with MVC. To work in the Morphic environment, see Setting up a Morphic project.
Customizing the UI within Squeak
The easiest way to customize Squeak's UI is via the main menu (world menu), in MVC or Morphic.
There are several UI appearance changes that can be made from the "appearance..." submenu under the world menu.
These include changing
- the window colors,
- the screen depth,
- rounded window corners,
- full screen mode and more.
The other important place to look is in the Tools menu Preferences window in the top menu.
To get to the same window you may also choose the world menu and then 'appearance...' and then 'preferences...'. This applies to versions 2 up to 6.0a.
Some key UI preferences include inboardScrollbars (for fixed vs. flop-out scrollbars), scrollBarsOnRight, roundedWindowCorners, and fastDragWindowInMorphic (for dragging a window outline versus a live window). Use the balloon help to learn more about the other preferences.
To set the background to an image, see FAQ: How can I give my Morphic world a wallpaper?. Also, see the Squeak FAQ for other UI tips, including changing fonts.
In Squeak 5.1 UserInterfaceThemes were introduced. To use them choose the menu 'Extras / Themes & Colors'.
To do a custom world menu (recommended) use How to create a custom world menu for the current project and subprojects..
For customizing Squeak in a comprehensive way see Subclassing MorphicProject, TheWorldMenu and PasteUpMorph.
Customizing the UI via Goodies
See Screenshots of Squeak for some pictures and links to some alternate looks for Squeak (mostly toward the bottom of the page).
Various goodies are also available for customizing Squeak's look & feel. If you know of other goodies, please add them here.
Browser Autolabeler by Maurice Rabb, automatically puts a meaningful label in a Browser's title bar.
A goodie which hides scrollbars when there's nothing to scroll is on my web space at http://www.mindspring.com/~dway/smalltalk/. (See HiddenScrollBar26.cs.) Also, in the "notmine" subdirectory are a few UI-enhancing goodies posted by others, including 3dlook-bf.cs, titlebarlook-tb.cs, etc. -Doug Way
The Backdrops goodie by Stephan B. Wessels enhances your options for desktop backdrops using the FileList. With this enhancement you can choose to have your selected image file tiled, stretched, or centered. Or you can use a gradient color backdrop. See http://www.preeminent.org/squeak/. Note that this is pretty old code and has been replaced, generally, by code in V2.8.
Personalizing the environment: Making Squeak your own is home to Project Zurgle, which modifies the look and feel of the Squeak desktop. Included is a theme for installing a Windows XP style interface.
There's also a new Skins II update. See Customizing the Squeak UI.
Since version 3.2 the Ctrl and Alt text-editing key-combinations may be swapped (cut, paste, etc.) which brings it in line with the MS Windows key shortcut convention. This helps first time users on the Windows platform considerably. Go to Preferences (via the World menu) and choose one of either: "swap control and alt keys" or "duplicate control and alt keys". The balloon help explains it.
Other UI-related goodies are available on the Goodies page.