Skype for Mac Design Contest - MacBook Air, iPad, Apple TV Prizes

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Skype has launched a design contest for the interface on its Mac client. “Create the new Skype for Mac chat style” is aimed at tapping into the design power inherent in the Mac community, and the company is offering prizes that include a MacBook Air, several iPad 2s, and some Apple TVs.

The is structured in three phases, with each stage lasting three weeks. At the end of each stage two winners will be selected, one deemed a “Judge’s Choice” and the other a “People’s Choice” winner. Those six winners will then be judged in a final round where a Grand Prize winner will be chosen.

Each Judge’s Choise winner gets an iPad 2, while People’s Choice winners get an Apple TV. The Grand Prize winner will then get a MacBook Air and an iPas 2, and their theme will used for an unspecified “upcoming release of Skype for Mac.”

Judge’s Choice Grand Prize People’s Choice

 

iPad 2

MacBook Air

Apple TV

  • An Apple iPad 2 (Wi-Fi only)
  • A copy of CSS3 for Web Designers
  • One year’s subscription to Unlimited World Extra
  • Your chat style included in an upcoming release of Skype for Mac
  • An Apple 11” MacBook Air
  • An Apple iPad 2 (Wi-Fi only)
  • One year’s subscription to Unlimited World Extra
  • An Apple TV
  • A copy of CSS3 for Web Designers
  • One year’s subscription to Unlimited World Extra

Participants of the contest can download a template that includes all of the CSS files and images that need to be modified, and Skype has detailed instructions on the contest’s site.

The first phase begins in 15 days, and Skype put a countdown clock on the home page set up for the contest.

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9 Comments Leave Your Own

geoduck

They are doing this because of the howls of protest from Mac users, myself included over Skype5. The interface is terrible, takes up too much screen space. However the trouble is more than skin deep. The program itself is buggy and unreliable. I tried it for a few days and then went back to 2.8. Problems including crashes, hanging, loss of contacts, mic or camera dropping at random requiring restarting the program to get it back, CPU hogging, memory hogging, the list goes on and on.

This thread on the Skype forums supports this.

Last weekend I got a call from two of my wife’s sisters. Despite my warnings they finally upgraded to Skype5. It’s been a disaster for them and they find the client unusable. They installed over the old one so unless they can find an installer for 2.8 they are likely SOL. OTOH maybe I can get them using FaceTime. If you want to try Skype5, install it to your desktop so it doesn’t overwrite your old version.

Skype5 is utter garbage. Fixing the interface won’t solve the problem. The code and philosophy behind it (that Skype should be primarily a Chat client not a video telephony client) is the problem. They need to trash Skype5 completely and start over.

I use Skype for all of my long distance calling (yes I have an account with Skype. I pay them money for the service. I’m not one of those people that b17ch about a free service.) and this really P1$$es me off. It has been a long time since I saw a company screw up a good program this badly.

mhikl

Now that ya got that outa yer hair, geoduck, it’s kina neat idea, eh?

geoduck

it?s kina neat idea, eh?

What is?

Lee Dronick

Now that ya got that outa yer hair, geoduck, it?s kina neat idea, eh?

Putting lipstick on a pig? smile

It could be fun, and lucrative. Contestants, hopefully graphic types, would be just doing a skin. I don’t Skype so I would need to get into that before taking it on.

cb50dc

it?s kina neat idea, eh?

Yeah, mhikl, as geoduck asked, “WHAT is?”

Do you mean his hair itself? Or getting something out of it? What did he use to remove it? I’m confused. This sounds important.

cb50dc

the howls of protest from Mac users, myself included over Skype5. The interface is terrible, takes up too much screen space… buggy and unreliable… crashes, hanging, loss of contacts, mic or camera dropping at random requiring restarting the program to get it back, CPU hogging, memory hogging, the list goes on and on.

Oh. Geez, man, I thought I was enjoying using it ? but now I see better. Yeah, it DOES suck! I mean, it still works for me, but now I’ll hold it in more suitable contempt, while I use it.

Though seriously, geoduck, what’s your setup? I use it on this lil’ ol’ late 2008 MacBook Pro, 4 GB, 2.4 GHz, 10.6.6. Honestly, I don’t recall any issues in particular. I haven’t consciously checked iStat Menus for CPU hogging during any calls, but proactively I do usually turn off anything else before Skyping.

geoduck

Though seriously, geoduck, what?s your setup? I use it on this lil? ol? late 2008 MacBook Pro, 4 GB, 2.4 GHz, 10.6.6.

Late 2008 MacBook 2Ghz, 4Gb RAM 10.6.7. My wife’s sister are on an ‘09 iMac and a ‘10 Macbook. Not sure of the exact specs but they should be more than enough to run Skype and they had no problems with the old client.

Do you mean his hair itself?

Considering how little I have up top it’s likely not that.

geoduck

Just got a note from my sister-in-law. She discovered that the mic stopped working on Skype5 last weekend because the MacBook was on battery and when that got low Skype disabled the microphone to save power. She dropped me a note just now because when she tried to call me with Skype to tell me, I wasn’t in and so didn’t answer, but Skype5 wouldn’t let her disconnect the call. She had to force quit it.

I’m sending her a link to the Skype 2.8 installer

Gridmaster

This contest shows precisely how Skype deals with design: a free cherry on the cake, done by ‘creatives’ who work virtually for free as they don’t need to earn a living. A contest to redesign one aspect of a shabby interface, in stead of selecting a designer or design agency to redesign the whole thing. With respect for all participants in this contest, this approach won’t work.

Why not propose a contest for programmers in the same time: solve all problems in the code and if it works you get 2 Macbook airs, and because coding is a lot of work, Skype adds a beautiful Skype headphone!!

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