Have you ever noticed that the more you tweak your desktop theme, the more it drives you crazy? Maybe it's just me--I'm pretty compulsive obsessive. For most of my career, I've tried to create an interesting, exciting, cool-looking desktop. I know that a lot of you are probably saying, "Duh!" right about now, but I figured out I was actually more productive when I made my desktop more boring.
I've heard people say that if you paint a child's room bright yellow, it makes them more hyperactive. I've also heard people say that if you paint a prisoner's cell soft pink, he'll be more sedated. I'm not sure if those things are true, but they seem reasonable.
I've always sought after the perfect wallpaper. However, the cooler the wallpaper is, the more it drives me crazy. For some reason, I've always found the default wallpaper in OS X to be very calming (with the exception of OS 10.5).
Recently, while using Ubuntu, I switched to having no wallpaper at all. It was initially an accident, but I realized I liked it. I just stuck with the weird tan color that is the default if you turn the wallpaper off. After a few hours, I realized it had a calming effect on me--which is important since I'm so compulsive obsessive.
Recently, I noticed my designer buddy Albert had a plain gray background on his MacBook Pro. I asked him why he had chosen not to use a wallpaper. He said that it was important for his desktop to be neutral. That makes sense that you wouldn't want your desktop to conflict with the design you were creating. I asked him which color gray he was using. It turns out, he wasn't using a plain gray, but instead he had added just a hint of red to it. He said it made the gray more "warm".
"Calm" and "warm" are two words that I had never even thought of when trying to describe the perfect desktop. I'm curious, has anyone else out there figured out a desktop that they find "calm" and "warm"? By the way, the background that I'm currently using is "#636161" which is a bit darker than what Albert originally picked, "#978989".