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Opacity/Semi-Transparency appearance settings for attractive Front Panel objects and User Interfaces

Status: New

Have you ever placed a background image on your front panel to make it look good, but then found that most of the controls and indicators covered everything up?

Ever wish LabVIEW had more appearance customization to make better looking GUIs?


I would like to propose an opacity slider control in the appearance settings tab of front panel object properties. The added setting would not make the entire objects opacity change; ideally the opacity control would only affect the borders and grey space. With this added control users can make better looking user interfaces without having to make custom controls.


Take a look at the difference:


Not Ideal Front Panel with background image and NO Opacity Control




Beautiful Front Panel with background image that you can still see by setting Opacity Control to 50%






Before and After Appearance Settings tab in the Properties Window for a waveform graph:


appearance settings before and after.png




Currently the only easy way to implement a similar type of setting is go fully transparent by using the tools palette paintbrush tool and setting the color to transparent:


tools pallete transaprency.png



Kudos and share this idea if you want it to happen!

Jacob R. | Applications Engineer | National Instruments

Trusted Enthusiast

I am sure it is posted somewher but essentially the colorbox should have an alpha channel so that all decorations, plots, controls (anything that uses natice colors) would support trancparency levels.  This setting could then just override all the parts of the controls alpha channel or you could do it on a per part basis.

Paul Falkenstein
Coleman Technologies Inc.
CLA, CPI, AIA-Vision
Labview 4.0- 2013, RT, Vision, FPGA

This is a better duplicate of my idea: Independent-Transparency-Settings

Kudos from me!

Knight of NI

I like it so I will kudo both ideas!




NI needs a full "Upgrade" of the FP.  I've been telling the users and NI this for 10 years, getting good responses from users but NI evidently sees this as a pain in their pocketbook.  This will take a significant effort on their part, but will be much more difficult and costly the more years they let it go by.  I've learned to program in Adobe Flash (previously Macromedia Flash), and their use of Vector Graphics has a great look and incredibly easy to resize without distortion.  Their Fading is in increments of 1 from 0 to 100.  Maybe NI should hunt down the original programmers of Flash to upgrade the LabVIEW Front Panel.  I believe the Upgrade of the Front Panel will bring in more customers.  But I guess that is just my 2 cents worth.

Trusted Enthusiast
Trusted Enthusiast

I don't have a degree in industrial design, but the example shown suggests that this would be a very bad idea in some hands... Talk about a cluttered FP and distracting background! Now make it 50% foregound and I am out of words to qualify the GUI... 🙂