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Designing Graphics for Windows Vista Applications

Read about the newest trends in designing modern Windows Vista-style graphics for your software and Web projects.


Developing software or designing a Web site? Ensure your project looks modern and contemporary by checking the graphics used against modern standards. This article explains the newest trends in designing modern, good-looking graphics for your off-line and on-line projects.

Ready Icons for Vista
With every new version of Windows, Microsoft refreshes guidelines for icon designers. If you want your project look consistent with the newest version of Windows, it is essential to read and understand the guidelines.

Not getting much into technical details, Microsoft points out that Vista-style icons differ from previously used XP-style graphics in several ways. The drawing style of the new icons becomes more realistic than cartoon-line XP icons, but still remains on the symbolic level without becoming photorealistic. Microsoft also extends the standard by defining the largest size of the icons to PNG-compressed 256x256 pixel images, effectively ensuring that applications look good on modern hi-definition displays. Finally, Microsoft recommends that toolbar icons are optimized for smaller-size viewing experience, and advises that toolbar icons bear enough visual distinctiveness even in their lowest resolutions. Toolbar icons in Windows Vista have no extra details such as shadows, and are front-faced (flat) with no perspective.

Well-designed and thought of icons enhance the appearance of your products, making them more consistent with Windows and third-party software installed on the user's PC. Good icons improve usability and efficiency of software, making it easier to use and more intuitive through better communication of ideas through symbols. Good icons make objects and actions easier to find and to use every day.

Windows Toolbar Icons are a set of readily available application and toolbar icons drawn in the new Windows Vista style. Strictly adhering to all guidelines, the icons share common style, colors and gamma, and come in all standard sizes and resolutions, including the recently defined 256x256 True Color format with alpha-channel. Windows Toolbar Icons can be used in software designed for Windows Vista, as application or toolbar icons, on Web sites and on-line portals. Simply visit www.777icons.com to access full-size previews of Windows Toolbar Icons.

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Individual Ready Icons

You can buy individual icons to suit your needs. Each icon is $1 when purchased individually.

 Icon Usage Agreement Large Weather Icons Large Weather Icons represent different weather conditions typical in software, weather portals, and mobile gadgets. The icons are available in typical resolutions standard to Windows, Mac OS, and mobile platforms. The biggest versions are huge 512x512 pixel images with vector sources in Adobe Illustrator (.ai) format easily available and ready to be printed or used in presentations in highest resolution.

Basic Icons for Vista Make your software look as nice as Vista with icons crafted in the same style

Windows Toolbar Icons Windows Toolbar Icons. A collection of practical and eye catching icons representing all basic operations required for surfing the internet or using various applications.

Business Icon Set Business Icon Set. A collection of all-purpose icons with various symbols for the business environment for use with your software or on your website.

Medical Icons for Vista Medical Icons for Vista has been created to eliminate any misconceptions appearing while viewing a medical Web site or operating a medical program. The icons are provided in various sizes and formats.