pragmatik wrote:It just doesn't add up that even if I cleanse that list of 16 steps of my failures, I can't get it down to the two: Choose song to start with, Play from there in correct order.
Choose song to start with, Play from there on in the correct order.
This is good feedback- thank you!
Do you have any suggestions for how to change Play so it can achieve your two steps simply?
Oh Do I. However, once more, a disclaimer is in place - I just took a big gulp of cough syrup to accomodate my terrible ail that has beaten me like a red headed stepchild.
First of all, let us do the obvious, which is to inspect the main display of Play.
Now this may come to some of you as a surprise, but I respect greatly how much effort has been put into the icon. Usually coders can't do graphics for shit and tend to be so socially inhibited that they lack any ability to ask for a proper one. So thanks. Although I could go without it, seeing as it just takes room. But sometime in the future when everything else has been worked out, you can replace it with album art, Right?
So then there is the "Now Playing" info so to say. It's nice, but I can also see this information from the Play Queue. I got something big brewing for this, so take heed...
To the right there are the controls. Now I'll be damned if these are removed, unless they can be user customized back there. For some reason, being the minimalist mutant I am, I love the buttons. I like to click them, WITH A MOUSE. They are actually the right size, but I suppose smaller icons could suffice. I think this is a matter of taste more than a question of practicality.
And there's the dragbar for song position, which to my enjoyment includes both "time played" and "time left," logically in our western left to right- order. I've got a final solution to this one also, and a well justified one too.
But this is the bomb: let's just drop the icon & the large album information for now. We divide it thusly:
prev, play/pause, stop, next, play order (random etc), select random track --- Customizable display of metadata, defaulting to: Artist, Year, Album, Tracknumber, Track. New line.
We put the play position here. Why? Depending on the way the drawbars often used for track position perform, it's easier to select a particular part when there is more room to it. We could use that fancy progress bar used for file copying since this is apparently an aesthetically questionable choice...;) If not possible to float, time remaining/elapsed should be discussed further. New line.
Now we should get into that heavy think tanking people, help me out here my little hobbits. I will, for the sake of courtesy, insist on leaving the play queue here for now - I have great faith in the practical uses of not having motorically challenged people scewing up your album library and it's sorting.
However, we need drastic changes to the way the play queue behaves. We must sustain all the functionality it has right now to accomodate the very cunning ideas our developer has had about it, such as possiblity to add 10 tracks at random (Great idea by the way, High Five!) yet we still must retain the oldschool functions of audioplayers every mac user doesn't for some insane reason seem to miss.
Just as the library, the play queue should be possible to sort by directory, filename and every data possible and give the columns sorting priority preferred by the user. Path & filename MUST be shown if there is missing metadata.
Now that we got that out of our system, there is the library. Let's separate it from the play queue with a search bar. new line
library. New line.
And that sidepain? Why they are often misspelled as sidepane, I can not comprehend. It simply does not compute, that on one side of the window there is an ugly extension of that very window that usually goes out of screen bounds. In our particular case, there is very important information to be viewed, so we should not under any circumstances use this for viewing our collection, but rather playlists or other irrelevant data. Actually, we should only use it if playlist can not be achieved by using tabs.
So there, a complete rewrite of the user layout (I'm not even touching the menus right now, I'm starting to feel a bit tipsy.) We of course could make all objects floatable for shit and giggles so that people like me wouldn't then flood this forum and complain about the order in which for example the top part of the window is aligned. People like freedom right?
Now that we got the visuals out of our system, let's get to making lists part:
2. The Number Two
3. Customizable simple looks
4. File Buffering
5. Other notes
Emphasis on proper customizable sorting by priorization of data columns, and robust file (meta)data handling is EVERYTHING. No Apple player does it. I repeat. APPLE PLAYERS DO NOT SORT FILES PROPERLY.
So Go for it man. Be the dude everybody will talk about. The Daring One, The One Who Made an Audio Player That Is Not Shit of which generations and generations will talk about in awe. You, Dear Sir, Will Persist in the Grinding Teeth of History. I will give you hundreds of Internets for that.
2. The Number Two
Yeah, the shithole. We all got a Number two. It's like this mp3 folder with all these random clips and other crap people have sent you, some lost and found clips and funnies from the internet. iTunes users call it the Library as they have no choice and I have a folder called mp3_misc etc etc.
It's something you definitely want to separate from the rest of your audio, because you don't want to hear about Howard Stern's nutz all the sudden in the middle of Grave and Hypocrisy.
The thing with this Number Two is that it also messes up the common libraries, as you will get hundreds, god forbid, thousands of artists with a singe track on your library. So this must be thought of.
3. Clean Looks
I suggest steering clear of custom graphics and skinning for now. Integration into the OS is imperative, which has been done well so far. Although it just so happens that people are not using OS X to please themselves, but to score with chicks, it's nice if their audioplayers don't look like something from gnome developer circle jerk party.
4. File buffering.
Very important with network drives & NAS/NSA applications becoming more popular. I'm not sure if it's already implemented since everything is working fairly well but many applications lack this.
5. Other notes
Proper support for audio formats (I suppose these kind of things are already taken care of?) It can of course be argued if supporters of even more exotic audio formats (sid, mods etc.) should be endulged. I say let us not go there for a while. A very, very long while. A while even longer than my rantings. That long.
I might've forgotten something and we might not be talking about the most comprehensive definition of a project, but at least I had fun - didn't you? :)
I of course didn't answer your question, to which the answer is: once the library is ok, it can be browsed and you can choose a song which is then doubleclicked and therefore played, after which the next song in the sorted order will start manifesting itself through the sound system.
The Playlist has, in my opinion, never been more than an extension of the users library, be it a directory structure from which files are added or a player specific database, that is why it's use should be possible, but not enforced.