WebGizmos' ObjectDock Background Contest

By on April 16, 2007 1:09:13 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums External Link

Zoomba

Join Date 11/2002
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Following on the success of the St. Patrick's Day Icon Contest, we've decided that these community mini-contests are a pretty good idea and want to do more of them.  Our next contest idea was provided by community veteran, WebGizmos, and fleshed out over a good number of emails and conversations.  Now, since this is a WG created and sponsored contest, it should be no surprise to anyone who has been around the community for any amount of time, that it's an ObjectDock one 

This contest is to create the best ObjectDock dock backgrounds you can.  Well, it's not that simple actually, they have to be built to match an existing WindowBlinds skin.  A lot of people who use ObjectDock usually find themselves scrambling to find a theme or background to match their favorite skin of the day, and usually have to settle with something that kind of comes close to matching.  We want to encourage more people to make docks that are designed to go along with more skins.

Now, I know a lot of you out there aren't familiar with how to skin ObjectDock, and to that end, WebGizmos has you covered!  About a week ago he emailed me a beginners tutorial on how to take an existing skin, and using SkinStudio, extract the needed visual elements to create a matching dock background.  You can find that tutorial here.

Of course, what would a contest be without rules, prizes and deadlines?

Prizes:

  1. Grand Prize - ObjectDock Plus, and one premium suite of the user's choice
  2. 2nd & 3rd Prize - One premium suite of user's choice.
  3. Community Choice - 1 Year WinCustomize Subscription

Rules:

  1. Deadline: 5pm Eastern Time, Friday May 11th.  You have just shy of 3 weeks to build and submit your docks.
  2. Entrants should not already own ObjectDock Plus.  If you do already own it, and still choose to compete, you will receive the premium suite, and the OD+ prize will be awarded to the 2nd place winner (and so on if they also are already OD+ owners).  It is possible to build and test your entries using 100% free tools (ObjectDock  regular is free, and there's a basic version of SkinStudio available as well).
  3. You must obtain permission from any skin author whose skin you use in creating your matching dock.  Permission must be included in the upload to WinCustomize.
  4. You must provide a link to the matching WindowBlinds skin in the comments section of your upload.
  5. After uploading the dock background to WinCustomize, post a link AND PREVIEW IMAGE to the comments section of this post.  Entries without preview images posted will not be considered.
  6. Entries will be judged by WinCustomize moderation staff.  The top 3 winners will be determined via voting.  Judging will be based on overall quality, complexity and completeness of a dock background.  The more detailed polished yours is, the better.
  7. The Community Choice winner will be selected by public poll on WinCustomize.

That about sums it up... so get to it!  To go along with the contest idea and basic tutorial, the prize of a copy of ObjectDock Plus was donated by WebGizmos.  Thanks to WG for your help in this!

P.S. If you're a skin author and would like to offer your skin up for people to use in creating their matching dock backgrounds, feel free to leave a comment below.

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April 16, 2007 1:16:25 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
Are the Stardock Suites fair game?
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April 16, 2007 1:31:38 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Unfortunately, no.  It's tricky for us to allow people to use any of our artwork or logos. 

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April 16, 2007 2:48:05 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
IS FIREWORKS OK?
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April 16, 2007 3:40:43 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
It's tricky for us to allow people to use any of our artwork or logos.


So if it's my own graphics and I don't include the monkey-lizard I can do a Pantheon (marble) related background?
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April 16, 2007 4:00:39 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

[

IS FIREWORKS OK?

I'm not sure I understand.  You can use any graphics program you like to make the dock images, it just has to work in the end as a dock background.

So if it's my own graphics and I don't include the monkey-lizard I can do a Pantheon (marble) related background?

It's A-OK so long as you don't use any images from Pantheon itself.  If you make the marble images and such yourself, and design it to match Pantheon, it's alright.

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April 16, 2007 6:03:00 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
This is a fantastic idea and a great way to promote the Dock in ObjectDock. (It's all about the background folks.) Kudo's WG.  
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April 16, 2007 7:31:05 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
If anyone has any problems in understanding the tutorial please feel free to send me message and explain what you don't understand...I'll be more than happy to try and explain it better for you.   

And for the record...in case you feel you don't have all the graphics programs you might need. Most of the docks I've created were done using two programs...MSPaint and photoshop. And about the only thing I used photoshop for was to remove the pink to render those areas (corners & center) transparent and then to add transparency to the center area where the icons/pngs reside and to soften the corners.  

You are not by any means limited to using those two programs...you can use anything you want...it is important to have something that will render transparency...but you do not have to make anything transparent...they just look better that way...the choice is yours.   
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April 16, 2007 7:40:29 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
This is a fantastic idea
Also great idea WG   

Thought u might say that   
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April 16, 2007 7:43:41 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
You can click on "email user" after clicking on "Send me message" in Reply #7   
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April 16, 2007 7:47:16 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
understanding the tutorial


there's a tutorial?
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April 16, 2007 8:34:16 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
Just a basic one Lantec.
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April 16, 2007 8:40:12 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
"Unfortunately, no. It's tricky for us to allow people to use any of our artwork or logos. "

I don't understand that one at all. Nearly half of the files on this site contain the windows logo and it's clear no one has permission from Microsoft to use it. Not to mention other logo's from products are found all over.
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April 16, 2007 8:48:19 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
Tip: Once you think you finished your dock. Stretch it out to fill about 3/4 of your screen the same way you stretch out a window...then look for things like blurred edges and to check if if any tiled images are tiling correctly. If you have blurred edges you need to correct these...

LeftWidth = ?
TopHeight = ?
RightWidth = ?
BottomHeight = ?

If you have these set to lets say 10 and your edges are blurred just increase your amounts a few pixels at a time. The tags lock in your sides...top...& bottom so they don't stretch and retain the graphics appearance. If the number is to high it will not tile correctly...you just have to tweak the amounts still you get it right.

Not all images will give you the desired tile effect...trust me...been there...done that...trashed tons of docks because of this. The more graphical your dock background the harder it is to get it to tile correctly. This doesn't mean it can't be done...it just means you may have to play around with the tag amounts tile you get it right...and even then it might end up in the recycle bin.
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April 16, 2007 8:52:27 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
I don't understand that one at all. Nearly half of the files on this site contain the windows logo and it's clear no one has permission from Microsoft to use it. Not to mention other logo's from products are found all over.


I will hash this out with Zoomba tomorrow and hopefully clear this up as far as what you can & can't use.
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April 17, 2007 7:33:50 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

The issue is specifically with Stardock Design created skins and suites.  People in the past have asked if they could use pieces from them, or use other Stardock icons or imagery in their work, and every time I've gone in for permission for things like that, always with the user stating it's for non-commercial use, I've been told that we can't grant permission for reuse of much of our artwork. 

As I state in the rules, if you want to pick a skin to match, you must talk to the skin author for permission to use their work as a basis for your dock.  In the case of Stardock Design skins specifically, I can't grant permission.

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April 17, 2007 10:10:57 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
awesome idea! should create some cool backgrounds. I'm so sick of using a completely transparent background...
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April 17, 2007 10:13:54 AM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
BuddhaV10, then stop using it. There are plenty of Background in the OD library...  
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April 17, 2007 12:48:50 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums


The issue is specifically with Stardock Design created skins and suites. People in the past have asked if they could use pieces from them, or use other Stardock icons or imagery in their work, and every time I've gone in for permission for things like that, always with the user stating it's for non-commercial use, I've been told that we can't grant permission for reuse of much of our artwork.

As I state in the rules, if you want to pick a skin to match, you must talk to the skin author for permission to use their work as a basis for your dock. In the case of Stardock Design skins specifically, I can't grant permission.


Well I don't want to sound rude here but I'd really like to know why people can't get permission to use the stardock/wincustomize logo's for art. When they are allowed to use microsoft logo's and other product logo's without any permissions granted from those companies? Like I said more then half of the material on this site contains logo's from other companies and microsoft is a big one. To me it just seems a little odd, not that I'm going to submit some artwork with the wincustomize logo myself as I've already done so in the past many times and each time I was greeted with a few nasty emails. I love the site but there's clearly some issues in the "permissions" department. Again I'm not trying to be rude so if it came off as such, I apologize. I am just trying to understand how other logo's can be used without permission and yet when permission is applied for in the case of wincustomize.. well denied is basically automatic.
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April 17, 2007 1:05:31 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
Tip: Once you think you finished your dock. Stretch it out to fill about 3/4 of your screen the same way you stretch out a window...then look for things like blurred edges and to check if if any tiled images are tiling correctly. If you have blurred edges you need to correct these...

LeftWidth = ?
TopHeight = ?
RightWidth = ?
BottomHeight = ?


You could set these really quickly in SkinStudio...just open a skin you dont like and use the nearly any section and put your graphic in its place...set your sizing margins and when it looks good...use them in your theme.ini.  
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April 17, 2007 1:19:10 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
use the nearly any section



Not sure I understand that IR..... what section? As what would you import the file into the WB, as the taskbar?

Sorry, me not understand
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April 17, 2007 1:30:39 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Well I don't want to sound rude here but I'd really like to know why people can't get permission to use the stardock/wincustomize logo's for art. When they are allowed to use microsoft logo's and other product logo's without any permissions granted from those companies? Like I said more then half of the material on this site contains logo's from other companies and microsoft is a big one. To me it just seems a little odd, not that I'm going to submit some artwork with the wincustomize logo myself as I've already done so in the past many times and each time I was greeted with a few nasty emails. I love the site but there's clearly some issues in the "permissions" department. Again I'm not trying to be rude so if it came off as such, I apologize. I am just trying to understand how other logo's can be used without permission and yet when permission is applied for in the case of wincustomize.. well denied is basically automatic.

At WinCustomize, we allow use of marks, logos etc up to the point where the owner comes and complains over their use.  At that point, we comply with the wishes of the image owner and remove work, and block future uploads using their imagery.  For example, we're very careful over Apple and Apple-esque work because they have been very protective of their IP in the past.  Microsoft on the other hand is very permissive over the reuse of their logos and images.

The issue of the WC lizard being used in skins and themes has been asked before, and the decision was that we would not allow redistribution of the logo by others in their own work. 

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April 17, 2007 2:11:34 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums


i know, and i've downloaded a bunch of them, it's just one of those things where they don't "quite" fit with my theme. im very picky. i use the beelzebub WB, and the beelzebub docks backgrounds didnt work for me!  

certainly no disrespect to any of the skinners who made the backgrounds. i apologize if what i said offended anyone. lord knows im having a fun time making my own WB, so i can actually feel "some" of your pain...  
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April 17, 2007 2:29:01 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
You can always use the great tutorial that WG wrote to make your own docks with any skin you want for personal use.
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April 17, 2007 3:07:55 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
I am just trying to understand how other logo's can be used without permission and yet when permission is applied for in the case of wincustomize.. well denied is basically automatic.


They keep tighter control over it? Sorta obvious really...being an art related site and a decision thats purely...per company.
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April 17, 2007 3:37:30 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums
Not sure I understand that IR..... what section? As what would you import the file into the WB, as the taskbar?

Sorry, me not understand


SKS can test stretch/tile damn near any image in any section of a WB...taskbar isnt the best choice because it uses 2 images...any single image graphic would be fine.(toolbar back[rebar]is a single)set your margins and drag and pull to your hearts content.  
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