Re: [Rhythmbox-devel] rhythmbox interface

On Fri, 2002-11-22 at 17:45, Douglas McMorris wrote:
> Rhythmbox Team,
> I've been following rhythmbox development for while.... using cvs since
> 0.3 or so and looking at code... filed a bug or too and such and plan on
> learning bonobo stuff well enough to do some coding on it.  Anyways...
> heres my opinion on where the UI needs improvement:
> 1. As far as the side pane goes, the best solution i see is labeling the
> side pane and making the distinction between the library and playlist
> more obvious.  This could be done by a tabbed side pane, but IMO that
> would be an ugly hack. A better solution would be a simple line
> separation between the library and the rest and always keep the library
> at the top of the list.  Another thing that could be done is make the
> side pane scrollable so that its easier to accommodate a large number of
> playlist.  Another thing that would make it more intuitive is if it was
> a listview area instead of icon list... look at itunes it uses the same
> style areas for the side pane as for the rest, but adds an icon and
> labels the whole area "source" to make it clear they are special.

if we decide to keep the sidebar, it will be turned into a list

> 2.  when it comes to the play controls i think the current way is
> right.  the only problem is that the user isn't notified whats going
> on.  perhaps a tool tip over the stop toolbar button telling the user
> that the current view is different from the playing view would help.
> Another thing that could be done is captions and/or an icon beside the
> playing group in the side pane to let the user know from which "source"
> the playing is coming from.

A tooltip isn't a very clear way to indicate this ;)

Making the group bold is definetely a decent workaround.

> 3.  as far as adding songs to playlist go i think its farely obvious if
> the user plays around enough.  adding that functionality to the context
> menu would help and perhaps a Organize -> Add to playlist menuitem would
> help.  It could have sub items such as Add artist to playlist, Add album
> to playlist, Add selected songs to playlist, and the list goes on.  if
> you add this functionality i think the user would quickly figure out how
> to put songs into the playlist.

Yes, but still these are workarounds to a fundamental problem, imho.

> 4.  there is a simple solution to this that i see. Add a the ability to
> queue the next song. in the node view make the text red so that the user
> know which song it is.  If they try to queue another song have a dialog
> ask if they really want to b/c theres already a next song queued.  If
> this is added in the same way the properties callback is it could be a
> toolbar item as well.  When it comes to playlist they should ALLWAYS be
> reoderable the library should not b/c it is meant to organize.

Hmm, this single-song-queueing sounds like crack to me, sorry ;)
Highlighting the next song red wont really work since you're likely to
not have it visible, and you often want to queue more than one.

> 5.  when it comes to cd audio i believe that if we are envisioning
> rhythmbox as the THE Music Player (the .desktop icon) then this is
> necessary.  i-radio would also make since because it is not just a music
> library organizer but a music player.  the library should only be part
> of its functionality not all of it.  while cd ripping is obviously file
> management based, most people don't view it that way. they think cd ->
> mp3,ogg = MUSIC and not files, and besides the nautilus approach while
> being nicely integrated into a file manager wouldn't make sense to most
> users. having an app that labels its self as being able to play the
> music that my system has access too would be a much better place for
> this functionality.

I mostly agree here. However, if we cannot integrate it in a clean way,
we shouldn't 'force' it because of that.

> i agree that the mockups you created seem crowded.  ideally what i see
> is instead of the current side pane we have list with icons and a way of
> conveying which one is selected and which one is playing.  IMHO the
> current UI is on the right track and just needs a few changes and a few
> features added to make it more usable.
> thanks for reading this, hope it gives you some ideas on what members of
> your userbase feel (i am only one, but....maybe i represent more)

Hehe :)


> -- 
> Douglas McMorris <>
> There are two major products that come out of Berkeley: LSD and UNIX. We
> don't believe this to be a coincidence.
> 	- Jeremy S. Anderson
> _______________________________________________
> rhythmbox-devel mailing list

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