Older blog entries for funrecords (starting at number 8)

A great quote from gnomdesktop.org.

"The fact that the much of computer world equates simple with dumb and complex with powerful is an unfortunate accident of history."

hadess: The GNOME VFS method provided by sound juicer is a start but the ui still sucks due to the lack of steps 2 and 3. Expecting users to be familiar with gnome-vfs schemes is an even worst ui than using an application. [1]

Anyway, while we're on the subject of code, any chance this patch can get applied to gnome-mime-data. I need it so that the open applet can be used to open folders.

[1] Once again i'm not picking on sound juicer here specifically.

8 Jul 2003 (updated 8 Jul 2003 at 06:42 UTC) »
A Simple CD Burning Interface

Ross Burton works on a nice little app called sound juicer. This app aims to provide a simple to use cd ripping interface. The thing thats strikes me though is the fact that no one ever thought "Hey this is a form of file management, lets put it into the file manager!" The file manager, what you say? Thats crack! Think again. The file manager provides the exact required interface here. Ripping cd's is just another form of managing your files (these just happen to cd audio tracks).

Dave's Proposed CD Ripping Interface

  • User inserts cd into cd player
  • CD player icon appears on the desktop
  • User double clicks on CD player icon, opening the CD player folder.
  • User selects the songs he/she wishes to "rip" with the mouse or keyboard.
  • User opens another folder in which to put the ripped files. Note, this step can be ommited if the user wishes to place the files on the desktop.
  • User drag and drops the files (CD tracks) from the CD player folder to the target folder
  • Since the files can not be directly copied, the file manager will popup a dialog offering to copy and convert the cd files to one of the available formats (wav, mp3, ogg, etc.).
  • Ripped audio files automatically appear in the music player library. Note, this library may just be another special file manager "search folder" with a special music library view

    Compare the above steps to rip a cd to the similar steps to copying files from a floppy disk. *gasp* you can replace the term CD Player with floppy disk and rip with copy, and you have virtually the exact same steps.

    Addendum, July 8th

    I whipped up a quick mockup dialog for the UI mentioned above. One issue that came to mind is that users may not want to be bothered every time they try to copy files from an audio cd to a folder. This leaves us with two choices. A lesser designer might suggest adding a "Don't ask me again" checkbox, but as mpt says "oh, so you didn't really need to annoy me, but you thought you would anyway?." The other option is to provide the preferences from the within file manager preference dialog.[1] The issue of a dialog vs preferences really requires two questions to be answered, "How often do users actually rip their cd's?" and "Will they most likely always choose the same format and endoding?" If the answers are quite often and yes, I think a preference available from the file manager preferences might be a better ui, if the opposite answers are true, than perhaps a dialog is better.

    2:36 AM, time to go to bed....

    [1] I do think these preferences are useful/necessary. A hi-fi audio fanatic will likely choose a high-bit rate to encode at, a linux geek will want to use OGG and your traditional file swapper will most likely want to use MP3.

  • funrecords is annoying

    sisob, maybe gnome needs a gnome-rants list :). For the time being usability list will have to do.

    In other news, I spent the day painting kitchen walls. It was kind of fun and I made a nice slice of cash as well, considering my current complete lack of income. I have now returned to my normal daily activity, staring at a computer screen.

    So I'm back at it once again, trying to convince gnome developers that a concrete document based object model is needed in order for gnome to extend its usability. I wonder if anything will come out of it this time. I'm honestly not holding much hope, but maybe I should join auspex's effort to produce a written document. He claims that he "could present (it) in person on a napkin." I don't doubt this.

    So Marco convinced me to put my "OpenApplet" (or as I like to call it "Text Box for Opening Stuff with...") into gnome cvs. He even was nice enough to fix up configure.in and to add an italian translation. Have a bunch of little fixes i need to do, plus i need to decide if i'm going to support keywords, smart bookmarks or both. Smart bookmarks will probably require supporting epiphany's bookmarks system. Also need to provide as easy way for users to configure their gnome-vfs schemes, something minimal is probably best i guess.

    Begging for a Feature
    Could some one please implement a tabbed window manager. I can think of lots of great uses for this, the least of which is the replacement of the navigational file manager with a spatial one that automatically tabs together folders within a hierarchy. I can help with the ui interaction design. Please!!!!!
    jdub posted a list of safari features that he thinks epiphany should try to incorporate. I really hope no one gets the idea that merging stop and reload into a single button is desirable, as even mozilla devs realized this was a bad idea.

    First advogato posting. Lots of stuff to say, too lazy to write it down :/ Need to get myself added as a contributor to epiphany.

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