Please explain these settings. :-)

  • Hi, everyone. I am checking out the upgrade to f.lux I just got. What is the Macular Pigment setting? How is that different from the Reduce Eyestrain setting?

    What is the Change Color To for? How do I use it?

    Thanks in advance.


  • Patch notes?

  • @Tikvah these are sort of "interesting" settings that you might like or not - they do not influence the main schedule. They are all tints that are not on the blackbody curve, so we've presented them as temporary modes rather than things you can schedule.

    The main idea in this version is that you only adjust f.lux when you want it to look different, and it will learn what you like and keep doing it.

    Change Color is one way, and the slider in the main UI is perhaps a better way.

    @Boogeyman here are the upgrade notes:

  • @herf Thank you, herf.

  • @herf I really like f.lux and will pay some since I am using it.
    My initial impression of the UI is that you are trying to provide a simple way to control a complex algorithm. Your explanation in this thread goes a long way toward helping me understand. But the "bigupdate" upgrade notes do not satisfy my curiosity about the details about new settings like "Macular Pigment", and how they are different from "Reduce Eyestrain".

    Is there documentation describing what looks like considerable thought behind the new settings and how f.lux learns to modify coloring?

    Generally speaking, I want to be in control and try new things but now I am afraid to try anything new since f.lux may start "learning" and producing unwanted changes.

  • For the most part, this version is not too hard to reset - if you get stuck you can just choose a preset (like "Recommended") on the top-right of the preferences again.

    The Color Effects are sort of what we'd call "demos" - so maybe they too prominent. I'm fascinated by research linking the "orange-yellow" macular pigment (which covers the fovea) and its effects on glare, and the color of that pigment is not the same tone as a halogen or incandescent light - it's a little bit different in spectrum and color. This filter simulates a person who has quite a bit of macular pigment, and shows you how it would "look" if you had more.

    We wanted to put this in for people who were curious, but I guess it's not the main point of f.lux, so I would call it a "demo". The "eyestrain" preset is another optical pigment that appears in the eye. So these are kind of ideas about, "if I ate a whole lot of carrots and leafy greens, how would the world look?" and not really the main day/night cycle in f.lux. Though to make it more complicated, we think perhaps people who are very deficient in these pigments may experience a lot more glare during the day, and so they might avoid going outside or being in bright places, and so that might still matter for overall circadian timing (which is sort of our main deal!)

    There are a variety of experiments in that menu, with Darkroom/Vignette being more appropriate for nighttime, and the eyestrain stuff more appropriate for daytime.

    But aside from that menu, the main goal of the f.lux UI overall is help with seasonal control of circadian timing, and we're evolving this as we go. But the idea is that f.lux can calculate a different level of light in the winter vs. summer, because we know that people change their internal timing based on the seasons.

    We are working to improve these algorithms along with hints from what people like - so the #1 goal for most people is "I can read the screen and it looks ok" and the #2 goal is "I feel a little better in the morning and slept a little more". I wish we could swap that ordering, but we can't really, because people would get mad at us. :)

  • f.lux doesn't "learn" anything. It doesn't change itself based on your usage habits. You can try any settings you want without making any permanent changes to anything.

  • @herf So, would using the "eyestrain" setting actually help to alleviate eyestrain? From what you are saying, it kind of sound hit and miss with a lot depending on the individual's eyes.

  • Yes, I would say most eyestrain is a mismatch with your environment.

    So sometimes changing the color can help, sometimes adjusting the brightness can. With great sensors we can automate this, and without them, well you have to decide what looks good.

  • @herf Thanks! That is helpful.

  • @TwoCables Yes. After playing with it for a while, I am understanding that f.lux is not learning by modifying the recommended (or any other) preset. It remembers and continues doing whatever and however you set the day's profile.

  • @herf OK. Got it! So, maybe I will experiment with it a bit.


  • @RickJohn57 said in Please explain these settings. :-):

    @TwoCables Yes. After playing with it for a while, I am understanding that f.lux is not learning by modifying the recommended (or any other) preset. It remembers and continues doing whatever and however you set the day's profile.

    Yeah, it just does what the settings tell it to. It never changes.

  • @herf Thank you for continuing to incorporate increasingly complex features. They are fun and the scientific basis is fascinating!

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