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Revision as of 10:27, 24 November 2015 by Alex-l (talk | contribs) (Index for mobile added)


KDE Human Interface Guidelines

The KDE Human Interface Guidelines (HIG) offer application designers and developers a set of recommendations for designing and developing user interfaces. Their aim is to improve the experience for users by making application interfaces more consistent and hence more intuitive and learnable.

Getting Started

  • Design Vision and Principles - The overall vision and principles that guide the design and development of user interfaces for KDE software.
  • Concept - Creating a project vision, determining the users, and the scenarios of use.
  • Organization - Guidelines on how an application’s content and functionality are ordered and categorized.


This section contains guidelines for application behaviour.

  • Viewing and Navigation - Guidelines on controls and patterns to use for viewing, navigating and performing actions on application content.
  • Editing and Manipulation - Guidelines on controls and patterns to use for selection and input.
  • User Assistance - Guidelines on tooltips, notifications, messages and help.
  • Patterns - Guidelines on how to use controls in different combinations to accomplish specific behaviors.


Presentation deals with the visual design of the user interface.

  • Layout - Guidelines regarding the placement and ordering of onscreen elements. Includes guidance on layout patterns, alignment, size and spacing.
  • Style - Guidelines on the use of colour, icon design and the typography to communicate with a consistent visual vocabulary.
  • Text - Guidelines for the written, language-based elements of the interface. Includes guidelines on wording, capitalization and localization.

Tools and Resources

The following tools and resources are offered to help with following these guidelines.

  • Controls List - A complete listing of all user interface controls and their guidelines in alphabetical order.
  • Mockup Toolkit - Includes UI controls stencils, color swatches and fonts to help create the visual design your application.
  • About the HIG - Learn more about the philosophy behind the KDE HIG.
  • Visual Design Group forum - Ask for help and share your design ideas.

Quick index for the new mobile-oriented HIG (work in progress)

Drawers & FAB



App settings

Cross-apps interactions

Complete app examples

  • App store (to be applied to Muon Mobile)
  • E-mail client
  • Media player

Content is available under Creative Commons License SA 4.0 unless otherwise noted.