[Rhythmbox-devel] Re: [Usability]rhythmbox interface

Jorn Baayen wrote:

>The current Rhythmbox interface isn't very good, and we've been thinking
>about improving it, but it's hard. So some input from you guys would
>Current interface, with it's problems:
>To begin with, for the people who have never run rb here is a
>As you can see, there is a sidebar, which allows you to switch between
>different views. This has a lot of problems:
>1. The interface changes when clicking a button in the sidebar, just
>like Evolution. My opinion is that it sucks, badly. I tend to remember
>where items are in the menus, and if they get messed up all the time, I
>get confused.
>2. The toolbar with the playback controls and the area with the
>currently playing information are static; they don't change when
>switching between views, and act on the playing view. This is really,
>really confusing. Even though I wrote it, I still find myself being
>dizzy when using it. (Just hiding these wouldnt work either: because it
>still is playing. Or stopping playback is not an option either, since
>you may just want to browse your playlists or do some organization.)
>3. It's not obvious how to add songs to groups/playlists. (Right now you
>have to dnd songs from the lib to the sidebar button, or use C&P)
>4. Users cannot specify what song to play after the current one.
>Playlists are not enough here; if you are playing from the library, you
>want to be able to say which song is to play next.
>What we need:
>1. The music library we have now
>2. A way to specify what song to play after the current one
>3. Playlists (reorderable subsets of the library) [1]
>4. A clean way to do this, without awkward views or stuff like that :)
>Things we have now, that will probably be moved out:
>1. Audio CD. Got this in because we had the views stuff, but it prolly
>belongs in a separate app. [For ripping we would ideally have nautilus
>support browsing audiocds, and support copying oggs off it]
>2. Internet radio. Same as above.
>3. The sidebar :)
>What other applications do:
>1. WinAMP, basically supports everything but all in multiple windows and
>with a totally ugly and confusing interface. Not something to get
>inspiration from.
>2. iTunes, does mostly the same as the current RB.
>3. MP3Organizer [http://mp3organizer.sourceforge.net/], integrates
>playlists and queueing by putting them next to the library.
>4. Apollo [http://www.apolloplayer.org]. Has an interesting PlayFirst
>feature, but it looks like a hack to me.
>5. Squelch [http://rikkus.info/squelch.html]. Here you seem to mark
>songs/albums for playback, instead of directly playing them, or
>Current Ideas:
>The view on the left would be the song queue/playlist view.
>The problem with these is that the interface is crowded; I dont think
>it's very clear.
>Another random idea is to have a "Queue" button or something, which
>would append the selected songs to some song queue. (And not have the
>song queue shown by default, but make it possible to open it in a new
>window. This doesn't solve the playlist problem though.)
>[1] Seth: At least Luis wants reorderable playlists (for mix tapes and
>the like), so groups like we have now don't suffice.
>Usability mailing list
One other thing, I dont understand why there is not a "stop" button.  
Every other music player I can think of has one, be it a player on a PC 
or a stereo system.


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