[mythtv-users] MythVideo: UI suggestion
jedi at mishnet.org
jedi at mishnet.org
Tue Feb 26 14:52:05 UTC 2008
> This posting is inspired by the "RANT: MythTV has a *horrible* end user
> experience." thread.
I think this is a less important idea than coming up with a mechanism
to manage large collections of videos. Namely, there should be something
that keeps track of a "series" so that you can proceed through a collection
episode by episode. The basic idea would be that mythvideo keeps track of
the last episode you watched and would have an interface that allows you
to view the last watched, the previous episode in the sequence or the next
episode in the sequence.
If you just watched TOS 105 and you push the "next" button then it will
show you TOS 106 and update the "current episode" pointer.
The normal "file browser" view is fine for general browsing. It could
stand to be spruced up a bit but it's perfectly functional. Although
some metadata driven navigation could be useful. Although this goes for
the recordings list too. A particular actor might show up in multiple
genres (in mythvideo) or multiple recording rules (in recordings). It
would be cool to resort based on that sort of thing.
I think that "series" awareness in mythvideo would be a very useful
> I would like to focus on the MythVideo UI, specifically the various
> views: "Browser", "Gallery" and "Listing". It is my opinion that none of
> these views allow the user to easily navigate through a large collection
> video files.
> MythVideo is missing a view which is cross between Browser View and
> View. It would take visual cues from Gallery View in that it would
> content in a hierarchical tree of virtual folders, but this tree would be
> based on classification of files by videocategory, genre, ... rather than
> physical placement on the hard drive. Perhaps this could be called
> View or Navigation View.
> In many ways Browser View works fine, with the ability to filter to
> different categories, genres and the like, and set those filters as the
> default view. The problem is that these filters require many slow steps
> change and it is not obvious to the occasional user that the list of items
> in the default view is only a subset of all available items.
> Here is a more detailed description of my proposal:
> In the Setup for the Category View the user would be allowed to specify
> groupings which are to be used in the hierarchical presentation. This
> be similar to the "Group By" setting in Amarok, where the user is offered
> specify "Artist/Album", "Genre/Artist", "Genre/Artist/Album", etc. In the
> Classification View setup the user would optionally select items in the
> "Filter Video List", for example to group first by Category and then by
> Genre. The filter items would be picked from "Not used", "First",
> At the top level, a user who had selected Category first, Genre second
> see a virtual folder of all his categories, e.g. "Movies",
> "SitComs", "Children's", ... Entering Movies he might see see Action,
> Adventure, ... (Of course, if you don't have any adventure movies you
> not get an Adventure folder in Movies). Finally, once the user had
> the bottom level, he would be presented with a view identical to the
> Browser View.
> The user-definable category items could also have a built-in hierarchy
> character. For example, you might have a "SitCom" category and
> "SitCom/Friends" and "SitCom/Seinfeld" categories with a logical effect,
> the SQL query for this feature might be a little bit tricky.
> In a way, this is just like Browser View except instead of a default
> setting the user has selected which of the filter items are important to
> presentation of the library and letting the user *navigate* through those
> items to his content of choice.
> I understand that the Gallery View could be made to work like this if
> are properly organized in folders on the hard drive. However, for many of
> us this will be hard to do, for example, many of us have more videos than
> fit on a single hard disk. Also, moving files around on the hard-drive
> be difficult once they are in the MythVideo database.
> As an aside, I think it would be nice to be able to play a Random item.
> Lets say that want to watch a random Documentary. I navigate to
> and select Random play. Or I can go to Movie, Comedy and press Random.
> Thanks for your efforts.
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