It takes YOU to Tango!

This Friday (and every Friday to come) is Tango Friday!


The Tango Project “exists to create a consistent user experience for free and Open Source software with graphical user interfaces.” We’re approaching this goal by having a consistant naming spec which can be used anywhere, by any application, on any desktop. Secondly, we are working on providing a default set of icons to fill this need.

For the Tango icons, we have a style guide in place and a lot of icons already.

Even if you want to use other icons, it benefits to have them ported to the icon naming spec which the Tango project has provided. By abiding by that spec, it will make an icon theme work across multiple desktops with minimal effort.

Now you might be asking yourself: What is Tango Friday? Basically, it’s like a hackfest, except with art. Tango Friday is simply a time to join #tango on (via IRC) and use your favorite graphic editor (most people use Inkscape) to make really cool Tango-style SVG and PNG icons!

It’s open to everyone interested. You actually don’t even have to be good with graphics. We need people of all sorts, including: developers, documentation experts, fanboys, and all those just plainly interested in what we’re doing. We want people from all parts of the community, from different companies, different desktops, and different operating systems even.

We need people to help us make the stock set of Tango icons, but we also want others to help it get implemented in Xfce, KDE, GNOME, Wine, Java apps, Web software, or anywhere else it may make sense.

We had an unannounced, spontaneous Tango Friday last week, and not only was it was tons of fun, it was quite productive as well.

Make sure to join us this Friday. See you there!

Tags: , , ,

11 Responses to “It takes YOU to Tango!”

  1. mojo says:

    It’d be nice if Tango project can provide a host for temporary upload. There are many artitst out there don’t have their own host. It would take long time for them to find a free host and register.

  2. techie says:

    I am a little bit confused about the icon spec of Tango. I am using GNOME as my main DE. And GNOME has much more icons than those listed in Tango. Even if I created a Tango style icon for GNOME, where should I commit them? Aren’t there any people out there standing up and creating a project to create extra GNOME Tango style?

  3. Erik Harrison says:

    First, it’s Xfce. We dropped the extra capitals a while ago. 😉

    Second, it seems Tango is something we’ve been needing/wanting for a while now. The lack of a consistent naming convention in the icon spec helps render the spec somewhat pointless, though we do support it.

    We’ve been hoping a standard naming system would emerge – we just have too few developers to pursue it on our own.

  4. Kyle says:

    I’m of course not an artist by any stretch of the term, but I have noticed a few things. The differances in the border around the jack on the network icon in the 16 pixel version vs the 22 pixel version seems odd. While I’m sure it’s unlikely you’d seem them next to each other any where other than the gallery, if you were used to seeing it one way seeing it with more border or less border might make you think it was something differant at first.

    The other thing is the mime-type icon for executables. I had to look at the scaleable version increased in size quite a bit to see enough contrast in the image to be able to tell that those were gears. In the 16 pixel version I can’t tell what the icon is supposed to be. The 22 pixel version is better but it still seems like there is a lack of contrast. I passed the images along to a color blind friend and he said it just looked like a diamond with nothing in it. The hard drive icon sort of suffers from the same issue.

  5. mojo:
    That’s a very good suggestion. We’ll look into some sort of recommended way of having a place to host your files. (It probably won’t be us ourselves hosting it, but we’ll look into the best method.)

    I believe that we’ll have pretty complete coverage; I don’t think any of us want to have a half-done desktop.

    One thing to note is that the spec covers stock icons — many icons on your desktop are application icons too, and we definitely want several of those done in the Tango style too.

    There also has been some talk about an extras set, like additional icons that do not necessarily fit things, but should be shipped so that people can pick icons that they like.

    Thanks for pointing that out; I corrected it in the post above.

    That’s awesome that it’s something that you guys want. We’re looking forward to working with you and the rest of the Xfce team.

  6. Kyle: Thanks for the feedback. I’ll pass it along to Jakub.

    One thing to note (that probably should be mentioned somewhere) is that we’re currently using batik to render the SVGs instead of librsvg. It’s due to the fact that the machine the website is hosted on has a Java interpreter but yet does not have glib2 installed (nor librsvg, obviously). We’re looking into getting that fixed, but it causes a few of the larger scalable icons to be rendered a little odd from time to time (and there are two that I know of that just don’t render at all).

  7. mojo says:

    Techie: I am currently now in charge the GNOME Tango style icon set project. Thos has given the web host, I am working on a package include all extra icons. The package when finished will be uploaded to For now, it’d be the best to get on IRC, talk with those people there, have your icons revised and send the latest files to my e-mail:
    I am working out better way to commit extra icons. Maybe an PHP script might do it?

  8. […] Tango friday was great! There were lots of people in #tango (about 40 at most I think) and some great icons were produced. Good to see some new talent onboard such as Lapo Calamandrei and others. Jimmac did a great bunch of icons, while repainting his kitchen at the same time (doesn’t that mean lots of paint on the hardware? ). […]

  9. […] It would be great for Create to work with the Tango project. I need to push more on this next week. […]

  10. […] Seems I got quite a list of icons that needs to be fixed in my comments on the last blog post, so therefore we have decided to have another Tango Friday tomorrow. If you want to help out in the effort to fix these, make sure to pop by #tango on this Friday. The brave knights Sir Jimmac and Sir Cornelius have already joined the effort, but we need your help as well! Here is the list this far: […]

  11. Heiner says:

    It’s just me or the tango project website is down???

Leave a Reply