When we first got a Macintosh at the school, I was so impressed. Until that point, all the word processing that we had done were on Windows computers. Everything looked like a work space with a Microsoft blue border.
But the Mac seemed different and it was all in the looks. It was all white with black characters and it gave you the real impression that you were working with a sheet of paper. I remember thinking about how nicely it was designed and document creation was just a bit different. That difference was actually quite motivating.
If you’re not inclined, the Macintosh environment can be just as white today. But, the user interface has more options. As a tinkerer, I have played around with new things and I’m firmly on the dark side now. I find it so much easier on the eyes when working with things. Now, both Macintosh and Windows have dark UI settings and that works nicely.
Then, there’s the Chromebook where I do my early morning reading in a dark-ish room. (If I turn on all the light, it wakes the dog.) Since a Chromebook is essentially the Google Chrome browser as interface, it was easy to install a dark theme to the browser. So, I joined 9,000,000 other people and used the Just Black extension from Google.
It made a big difference almost immediately.
But, I wanted more. One of the things that the Edge browser had that always impressed me was a black themed right click menu. I find myself using the right click menu as it localizes whatever I want to do right in front of me. Sadly, the Chrome browser was using a white menu. As I started to be worried about it, it seemed to become more annoying. My mind does strange things when I worry about this.
I looked in all the Chrome settings and couldn’t find what I wanted. But, as any Chrome user knows, you don’t have to stop there. There’s the experiments. A quick search for “dark” in the flags got me what I wanted.
I actually tried all the settings and was quite happy with how dark things became. I did back off because not all of the pages I visit were playing nicely with Google’s idea of what dark should be.
But, having the system UI dark was exactly what I wanted. My right click menu now looks like this.
And I’m loving it. In the big scheme of things, it’s probably not that big a deal. But, for the eyes in the morning, the more of the screen that I can take away from that bright white, the better.
I will continue to play around with the other dark settings as I suspect they’ll become better over time. And, for other browsers like Opera which are based on the Chromium project, the settings are there for adjustment as well.