Few days ago I was googling around using keyword “bmpanel2”. I was simply curious what people think about bmpanel2 and how many pages google can find with that keyword. And suddenly I got onto one interesting page here. As you can see, there is a theme for bmpanel version 1 and pekwm. But due to weaknesses of bmpanel theme mechanism it can’t be properly ported to bmpanel. It’s caused by the fact that bmpanel can’t stretch images. This was my decision, because at that time I thought that this feature is useless and ugly. But now (with PekWM theme engine help) I can see that I was wrong.
Let’s see how it is possible to stretch bitmap image without making it ugly. It’s actually very simple. The point is that we need to use 2 layers. The stretchable background on layer 1 and non-stretchable corners on layer 2. Using this technique we can perfectly stretch bitmap images without making them ugly.
Using this technique it is possible to produce all sorts of symmetrical gradient-like backgrounds for elements with variable width. Without fear of screwing corners of the image and making it ugly. I mean it looks really nice, and I certainly want something like that in bmpanel2. Let’s see how it works, I have a button from this tutorial, let’s stretch it using two different techniques. In the second row it is simply stretched with stupid scale and in the third row it is stretched using this simple trick described above.
Also it would be nice to have another 2 button states for themes – pressed_highlight and idle_highlight. Or in other words “mouse-over” states. I think this will make bmpanel2 even more interactive and nicer.
Keep watching for updates!
P.S. Btw if you have any kind of interesting ideas about “theming” features, feel free to leave them in comments or send them to me via email.