Mac UI Improvements - Full screen, docking palettes, etc

I’m wondering if there are any plans to modernize the interface for Mac. Currently there is no full screen mode, either native or OS-based, very limited ability to dock palettes, and a clunky OS color-picker.

Any work in this area would contribute to Sketchup’s ease of use and visual clarity.


I agree for full screen mode and docking palettes

Fully agree with the areas you identify as needing interface improvements on the Mac. Materials management is especially lacking vs. the windows version. I would support any changes that modernize and harmonize the UI.

I concur! Offer MAC users customization of toolbars icons, palettes, docking, auto hide/unhide,…etc. These are common sense UI features that I’ve wanted for years (similar issues with AutoCAD LT <2015 for MAC). Why does WIN get it and MAC doesn’t? It should be up to the user, not OS.

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pixelmator is still going pretty strong with floating everything but some other applications are starting to shy away from that approach and using single window…

like (i.e. semi-copy this :slight_smile: )

bonus- these apps are great for going full screen too.

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I totally agree.
There are two main roads now: one is pixelmator or autocad for mac approach, many floating translucent palettes that snap to the display edges. The other is iwork, safari or rhinoceros approach, everything in one window.

Personally I prefer the second, everything in a single window.


AutoCAD 2017 for Mac released: Compact UI
SketchUp 2017 released… still can’t use Mac multitouch trackpad :sweat:

Hello? Is anyone from the sketchup team reading/listening?
This is a request back from 2014… we’re in 2017 and working in SketchUp with two display is such a nervous pain! :slight_smile:

Bump! Anyone…Bueller?

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EDIT: Trimble’s SketchUp division has a company policy that employees do not publicly make any forward looking statements (ie, future plans.) Employees have stated this policy numerous times on all the forums that there have ever been.

Dan, i can’t agree. It’s called “bullshit”.
Adobe much more “publicly traded” company, but it’s support teammates may answer in comments about feature updates and improvements.
Trimble, shame on you.

Many good apps migrated to single window and docking panels:
Xcode, Pages, Numbers. All Adobe apps have settings to enable single window interface.
4 years since this feature request. It looks like sketchup does not want to be in the list of good apps.

SketchUp is a cross-platform application that relies heavily on what the OpenGL graphics system can offer. Adobe apps don’t use OpenGL so the underlaying limitations may be different.

Here we go again. This is one more excuse, nothing more. If there is an “limitations”, why do not switch to more robust solution without such limitations. 4 years is enough to make any UI changes.

So what is the more robust, cross-platform solution? You seem to know?

Okay, that statement I said was a year old. We since had another discussion (in another topic thread,) about legality and kind of came the the better conclusion that it’s more a company policy and the roots are in the competitiveness of the 3D modeling and design software business.

So … I modified my previous post to …

This is not surprising. Marketing departments like to control how new features and products are announced and released. (Also programmers for competing products read and sometimes post here because their products need to use the SketchUp SDK to create SKP file importers and exporters. It is not smart to prematurely announce feature plans.)

I don’t dispute there are better interfaces. It is one main reason I’ve never bought a Mac.

At one time, the Windows editions of SketchUp were very similar to the Mac editions. It was only in the 2016 version that the SketchUp Windows editions got the docking panel interface. I myself logged a feature request for this at least 10 years ago (during the v7.0 release year.)

So, they did eventually implement the request even though it took about 6 or 7 years for the “item” to percolate up to the top of the feature priority list.

A bit bombastic for your 1st post here having spent a total of 25 minutes as a new member.

The SketchUp development team have their own schedule and plans for feature implementations. Patience is required. They do not have the resources or staff of large companies like Adobe and AutoDesk.

You are not the only one who has expressed displeasure in the Mac edition interface.
But being profane and insulting will not help bring desired features any sooner.

@SketchUp_Moderator, pls monitor thread.

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Feature request threads are monitored regularly although they may not always be responded to. When abusive or profane behavior is exhibited, a response is often generated.

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8 posts were split to a new topic: Lockup on Launch Issue

A post I added that relates to full screen, docking, and such things, got split across to the lockup on launch topic. Here’s what I said (and I’ll delete from the other topic):

I feel I’ve been missing out now! A few comments:

I know there are differences in the Colors palette and the Windows Materials palette, but the Mac version is using the standard macOS palette. I can be working in Keynote, come up with the most amazing color that has ever existed, drag it into a swatch position, and immediately use it in SketchUp. There’s some potential in that approach.

Since the comment in 2014, SketchUp does seem to do macOS full screen now, including appearing in its own Space. It also can have multiple tabs in the one document.

Adobe do use GPU, a lot. Here’s an article about GPU usage in Illustrator, which it has done for three years now:

Another article, from two years ago, about the GPU and OpenGL settings in Photoshop:

As for palettes, Adobe do have a good compromise in their workspaces. You can reset a given workspace, and all the palettes get docked into a particular location, but, you can then drag out any palette to be on its own, and for that workspace your custom position is remembered between sessions.

There was legal action a while back, where Macromedia and Adobe were both doing palette docking, and they were suing each other over the techniques that overlapped. The problem went away when Adobe acquired Macromedia. That does show though that there may be legal reasons why the SketchUp team can’t do palette docking in a better way.

I haven’t used the SketchUp Mac verion much but I have gotten the impression its Material browser somewhat hides the fact that a SketchUp material is a global object, a bit like an Adobe Swatch. I think this is an important aspect of materials in SketchUp, that should be clearly communicated through the UI. A face never has a color. It can however have a material, and the material has a color. Edit the material once and all faces using it are updated.