@gspeak: As promised, I stayed up later tonight after getting the kids to bed. This has been rather rough on me, but am making the sacrifice for the community.
I have done my best to try to come up with a better way than what IDM has to create themes. I just can't seem to do it. After really experimenting with it and learning how it works, I have found it to be quite intuitive.
If you have a file open that uses the color groups that you will be setting up with syntax highlighting, and put UE and the Theme manager up side by side, you will see every change you make in the theme manager appear instantly as a preview in UE, even before you press Apply. That means if you don't like the change, you can still cancel it without saving to the theme.
Looking at the sheer number of things that need to be customized (or that CAN be customized) for the application areas itself, there is no way I can do a better job of what IDM has already done.
One of the great things about what they have done that I cannot do, is to allow you to make "global" syntax highlighting changes, or make custom changes per language. I was only able to do global changes with my tool, or export one wordfile at a time, which then became a nightmare, as you had to close UE to apply it, then reopen UE to see how it looks. The new Theme Manager does the preview in real time.
It's very different, and takes a bit of getting used to, but if you take some time and work with it, it becomes pretty intuitive. I was able to make changes as quickly with the new Theme Manager as I was with UE Companion, once I got the hang of it.
So, because I feel this way after really getting a chance to look at it properly, I won't be doing a version 20 and above program to handle themes. I just don't see a real need as there was in previous versions.
If Mofi is able to create a script/macro that will convert from the old theme files to the new, then I would be willing to set up a batch run to convert all the themes currently on my site to the new version.
I had set up coding to check certain intensity levels on the syntax highlighting that would allow you to separate "dark" and "light" themes. It would be nice to do something like this to give a standard "dark" or "light" interface to UE's interface at the same time, but that would take a bit more doing. I doubt I'll have time any time soon.
Best of luck to everyone with their themes. I think version 20 makes it easier than ever to share themes. Perhaps we need a site to allow submission themes with screenshot previews and allow browsing/downloading of the same. Does anyone know if IDM plans on handling that? Or will that need to be a 3rd party "fan site", like all the Visual Studio themes out there?
“Don’t document the problem, fix it.”
– Atli Björgvin Oddsson