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ModelCitizen
2008-08-13, 00:13
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LATE EDIT.
To anyone who has an interest in getting the Now Playing eccentricity of the player UI sorted out once and for all would be best off to start reading this thread from the post linked to below. Posts previous to this post are waffle:
http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?p=329003#post329003
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I've been finding navigating music on my SlimDevices quite frustrating recently and I've only just realised the main reason why.

I'm sure when I used to hit the left arrow button on a remote from the Now Playing screen I used to go back to the last menu item I was at (usually an album or track in my collection). Now when I hit the left button I am *always* returned to the first item on my Home menu. This means nine times out of ten (yes I've counted) I have to navigate back to where I was previously. This is a right pita.

Has this behaviour been around long and I have I just missed the change? I know that the SBC suffered from this behaviour but thought that it was intended that it's behaviour would soon come to mirror the behaviour of the remote. However, what appears to have happened is that the behaviour of the remote has been modified to mirror the (far inferior in my opinion) behaviour of the SBC.

Can anyone elucidate in any way?

Thanks.

MC

kdf
2008-08-13, 00:24
ModelCitizen wrote:
> Can anyone elucidate in any way?
>

sounds like the difference between the "now playing" screensaver and
the "now playing (jump back on wake)" screensaver. The jump back option
will remember the last place you were, where the non-jump back will just
go to the now playing menu position, which when a left arrow is pressed
takes you to the "now playing" top level menu item.

-kdf

ModelCitizen
2008-08-13, 00:40
sounds like the difference between the "now playing" screensaver and the "now playing (jump back on wake)" screensaver.

That's what I thought at first so I checked that my Now Playing ScreenSaver settings had not changed. They hadn't... however the it appears name of the "Now Playing (Jump Back on Wake)" screensaver has been changed to "Jump To Now Playing". Perhaps it's behaviour has changed too? If it has then there now appears to be no difference between it and the "Now Playing" screensaver setting.

MC

mherger
2008-08-13, 00:53
> That's what I thought at first so I checked that my Now Playing
> ScreenSaver settings had not changed. They hadn't... however the it
> appears name of the "Now Playing (Jump Back on Wake)" screensaver has
> been changed to "Jump To Now Playing".

There we go... I was sure this would lead to confusion: "Jump To Now Playing" is not the "Jump Back" flavor, but what used to be the "Now Playing" screensaver. It will really jump there and not go back. Thus you'll have to use the simple "Now Playing" version...

--

Michael

ModelCitizen
2008-08-13, 01:15
There we go... I was sure this would lead to confusion: "Jump To Now Playing" is not the "Jump Back" flavor, but what used to be the "Now Playing" screensaver. It will really jump there and not go back. Thus you'll have to use the simple "Now Playing" version...
Michael

Hmmm. I'm sorry Michael, I think I may have misunderstood you. Are you saying that the current behaviour of the "New Playing" screensaver is supposed to be the same as the behaviour of "Now Playing (Jump back on wake)" used to be?

If so, that's not how it is for me. Neither "Now Playing" or "Jump to Now Playing" do what "Now Playing (Jump back on wake)" used to do. In fact both of them appear to do exactly the same thing, i.e. for both hitting the left arrow takes you back to the top Home menu item.

An aside:
The Now paying Screensaver idea has long been the most confusing thing about the SlimServer UI. It is a thorn in the side of straightforwardness. :-)

MC

ModelCitizen
2008-08-13, 05:11
Having played around a bit more it seems that the old "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)" setting has been entirely done away with.

If I'm correct this begs the question: Why?

The "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)" was the only setting that made any sense out of the Now Playing screensaver/Now Playing screen mess.

Without it the SB2/3/Transporter display/remote UI is just plain frustrating to use. The change has made a major difference to navigation... and entirely for the worse.

I'd be very interested to know why dumping the "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)" setting was considered a good idea, and if there is anyone who thinks that the remote/display UI works better now without it?

I'd really like to revert back to 7.0.1... .

MC

mherger
2008-08-13, 05:28
> Having played around a bit more it seems that the old "Now Playing (Jump
> back on Wake)" setting has been entirely done away with.

It's working fine here. The above option is now simply "Now Playing", and the former "Now Playing" is now the "Jump to Now Playing" or similar. IMHO it was a simple string change. And it's still working fine for me.

If you have 3rd party plugins/screensaver, get rid of them and try again.

> The "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)" was the only setting that made
> any sense out of the Now Playing screensaver/Now Playing screen mess.

It's not that bad, is it?

--

Michael

y360
2008-08-13, 06:04
I've lost you.
Can you please explain the difference between 'Now Playing' and 'Now playing (Jump back on wake)'
I was always frustrated by having to to navigate from Now Playing back to the last menu I was in.
Are you saying there is actually an alternative ?
I see that my player is set on "Now Playing" which was chosen as the default.

Also, what's the difference between 'Now Playing Information:' and 'Screensaver when playing:' ?

I'm a long time user and of some technical orientation (if I may say so), but if I find this all too confusing, what will my "normal" folks make of this ?
How on earth are mere mortals expected to figure out what these options mean ?

mherger
2008-08-13, 06:39
> Can you please explain the difference between 'Now Playing' and 'Now
> playing (Jump back on wake)'

We changed the screensaver's names:

- Old "Now Playing" -> "Jump To Now Playing"
- Old "Now playing (Jump back on wake)" -> "Now Playing"

> Are you saying there is actually an alternative ?

There has always been. Now it's even the default behaviour

> Also, what's the difference between 'Now Playing Information:' and
> 'Screensaver when playing:' ?

The screensaver can be anything. The "Now Playing Information" is about what will be displayed besides the title etc. when in Now Playing mode.

> I'm a long time user and of some technical orientation (if I may say
> so), but if I find this all too confusing, what will my "normal" folks
> make of this ?

That's one reason why we changed it: the new names should better describe what the screensavers are actually doing. And the former default behaviour was annoying/confusing. Thus we changed it, too.

> How on earth are mere mortals expected to figure out what these options
> mean ?

We hope strongly they will now do better than ever before :-). Really - I think longtime users will be more confused than newbies, as they've got used to the confusing names. New users will find them much more intuitive to understand.

--

Michael

ModelCitizen
2008-08-13, 07:09
As succinctly as possible?

This is only relevant for the remote/player display, not the Duet or SBC.

You can choose between various screensavers for individual players (Payer/Basic Settings). Up to and including 7.0.1 the "Now Playing" screensaver was set as the default for when music was playing and kicked in afer a set time. However, annoyance was caused to many by the fact that when the screensaver was shut off (by hitting any key on the remote) the user was *not* left with the screen they had been viewing before the screen saver kicked in, but with the default top level screen.

To address this problem the "Now Playing (Jump back on wake)" screensaver was invented. If you selected this screensaver in your Player/Interface settings then when the screensaver was closed (by hitting any key) you were returned to the screen you were viewing before the screensaver kicked in (as most users seemed to expect and want to be). Unfortunately this screensaver was not made the default so most users were left with the confusing functionality they'd had previously.

It took until 7.1/7.2 for the "Now Playing (jump back on Wake)" screen saver to be made the default screen saver. And at this time it was renamed to be "Now Playing" which, as Michael says, is bound to cause another layer of confusion... but in my mind was the correct choice and well.... was there a better option?

And now my particular bugbear:

The Now Playing area has always been a bit of a mess. There is a confusion between the Now Playing screensaver and the Now Playing screen (oh yes, they are different things!). They look like the same thing and are pretty much called the same thing, but they have different functionality applied to them.

For instance, if you are using 7.1/7.2 and the default Now Playing screensaver ("Now Playing (jump on wake)" as was) kicked in you can use the left arrow and you'll be returned to the screen you were viewing before the screensaver kicked in <hurrah!>.

But if you select Now Playing from the remote you are returned to the Now Playing *screen* and hitting the left arrow returns you to the top item in your Home menu <grrrr!>.

To me the most obvious and overriding fault with the remote/display UI and the main reason that a considerable number of new users think the UI is "eccentric" and hard to get to grips with is the similarity (and differences) between the Now Playing screen and Now Playing screensaver. The recent decision to make the "Now Playing (Jump on wake)" screensaver the default goes a good way to alleviate this eccentricity, but still does not entirely address the underlying problem.

Summary:

1) There should not be two screens that are virtually indistinguishable in look and name and that have different functionality applied to them.
2) Selection of a Now Playing screen should not totally divorce a user from what they were doing previously to selecting said screen

MC

ModelCitizen
2008-08-13, 07:15
The "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)" was the only setting that made any sense out of the Now Playing screensaver/Now Playing screen mess.
It's not that bad, is it?
Yes, I think it is actually. See below for why.

MC

y360
2008-08-13, 07:52
We changed the screensaver's names:

- Old "Now Playing" -> "Jump To Now Playing"
- Old "Now playing (Jump back on wake)" -> "Now Playing"

Michael

Thanks for your explanation.
Was this changed in 7.1 or 7.2 ?
I still see "Now playing (Jump back on wake)" in player settings under SN which is supposed to be 7.1

ModelCitizen
2008-08-14, 01:09
The "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)" was the only setting that made any sense out of the Now Playing screensaver/Now Playing screen mess.

It's not that bad, is it?

It is and here's an illustration why.

I had trouble sleeping last night and so played around with my bedside SlimDevice using the remote. I ended up trying out a lot of my Last.fm friends and neighbours Loved Tracks radio. As you can imagine the music returned was err.. unpredictable to say the least. This meant I did a lot of playing around with viewing track/artist information (via the Last.fm facility) and loving and banning tracks, and therefore a lot of time navigating the UI.

Once I'd chosen a neighbours Loved Tracks radio I wanted to see what track was playing and so had two options

1) Wait minute (or in my case 30 seconds) until the Now Playing screensaver kicked in
2) Hit the Now Playing button on the remote to see the details instantly

Obvious disadvantage of 1) is the wait

The extremely annoying disadvantage of 2) is being taken back to the top item in my home menu when I hit the left hand arrow key expecting to be taken back to the screen I was last on.

It was quite a frustrating experience for me.

The thing is that I, as a long-time Slim user and very conversant with the UI, am very aware that the Now Playing screen/screensaver are different things and have different functionality applied to them. New users aren't and so the UI can often appear eccentric and be quite frustrating to use (as I have often seen with friends who use my remote from time to time).

I think a solution may be that the Now Playing screen be done away with entirely and that the Now Playing button on the remote be mapped to the Now Playing screensaver.

I'd welcome a discussion about this somewhere, with a view to raising an enhancement. I surely can't be the only one to have been continually frustrated by the Now Playing functionality over the years... can I?
I'm also sure there are consequences of messing about with the Now Playing functionality which have entirely escaped me, so any feedback would be more than welcome.

Any answers to the question posed in this thread would be very welcome too: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=51061
-----------------------------------------------------

Note: All the above assumes SlimCenter 7.1/7.2 with new Now Playing screensaver (was Jump back on Wake in 7.0.1) and disregards SqueezeNetwork (where it looks like the Now Playing screensaver change may not have been implemented at the time of writing).

MC

cshaida
2008-08-14, 07:00
Well, I've learned something today so that's good, right? Thanks to all of this I now understand the underlying logic to what I had thought was just erratic behavior. Also a longtime SB supporter (5 and counting), but add my vote/voice to modelcitizen's in finding some way to get 'back' to the prior menu even from 'now playing' (and not just from 'now playing (screensaver)').

ModelCitizen
2008-08-14, 08:14
Thanks to all of this I now understand the underlying logic to what I had thought was just erratic behavior.

And this illustrates the problem perfectly. Most users put up with it and think it's eccentric or erratic behaviour, and as they don't understand what is going on and can't describe the problem they put up with it.

Unfortunate. Due to this inability to describe the problem, this most glaring and obvious eccentricity (which almost ever user must fall over almost every time they use the player UI) remains unaddressed and unresolved to this day.

...and... it might just be very simple to sort out too.
:-(

But seeing as the Squeezebox Classic has been removed as a product from the SlimDevices home page and the Duet is now being heavily promoted maybe Logitech aren't too bothered with the player display any more...

...oh, hang on.... ;-)

MC

ModelCitizen
2008-08-15, 00:06
This topic didn't get the interest from the developers that I'd hoped (but I guess the timing could have been better).

I've filed a bug/enhancement and would be glad if anyone who understands the issue or is as frustrated with the player UI Now Playing functionality as I have become would sign up for it.

http://bugs.slimdevices.com/show_bug.cgi?id=9164

It just might be incredibly simple to finish off sorting out one of the longest-running and most baffling eccentricities of the player UI.

MC

autopilot
2008-08-15, 05:26
I'l vote, completely agree with all you have said. Makes no sense the way it is now, just frustrating.

bonze
2008-08-15, 05:49
I think a solution may be that the Now Playing screen be done away with entirely and that the Now Playing button on the remote be mapped to the Now Playing screensaver.I'd agree with this idea - and make it possible to also use MusicInfoSCR
The only problem I see is that you would lose the right-arrow information menu?

I often do the same - scan through a few radio stations or Shoutcast and wonder what song is playing so hit the Now Playing button.
And then spend the next few clicks trying to navigate back to where I was.

Is it possible to remap the 'Now Playing' key yourself?

Or how about Now Playing button once for the Now Playing info and then button again to take you back where you were?

Landhoff
2008-08-15, 06:06
But seeing as the Squeezebox Classic has been removed as a product from the SlimDevices home page and the Duet is now being heavily promoted maybe Logitech aren't too bothered with the player display any more...

...oh, hang on.... ;-)

MC

Just a small correction. though the SB classic is not on the front page, it is still in the "Products Info" list... :)

ModelCitizen
2008-08-15, 06:11
The only problem I see is that you would lose the right-arrow information menu?
I thought this would be a problem so tested and for some reason (that escapes me now) it wasn't a problem.


I often do the same - scan through a few radio stations or Shoutcast and wonder what song is playing so hit the Now Playing button. And then spend the next few clicks trying to navigate back to where I was.
I'm sure you, and every other user of the SlimDevices players display, feels the same.


Is it possible to remap the 'Now Playing' key yourself?
I've asked this and not had a reply (the developers are very, very busy). It is definitely possible (and easy) to map the remote keys using the ir map file (and I've done it before). I doubts that it is possible to map a screensaver though.


Or how about Now Playing button once for the Now Playing info and then button again to take you back where you were?
That's an idea I guess, as is the one that someone added to the bug... map the jump back on wake bit to the left arrow when in the Now Playing screen. The more I think of this idea the better it looks.

Please vote for the bug or add a CC to make the Logitech developers realise that there are others who want the Now Playing functionality to make sense (and I'm not just a lone nutter!).

http://bugs.slimdevices.com/show_bug.cgi?id=9164

It'd be really great if this simple change could be implemented for 7.2 and for any new mass-market players (which have a display) that may or may not be planned for future release (see earlier thread in this forum).

MC

Wirrunna
2008-08-15, 16:28
Dear Lone Nutter,
This has been an enlightening thread. Like others I thought the behavior totally erratic.
It would really enhance the user experience if the Now Playing functionality made logical sense.

mherger
2008-08-16, 01:57
> This has been an enlightening thread. Like others I thought the
> behavior totally erratic.
> It would really enhance the user experience if the Now Playing
> functionality made logical sense.

I think it's great that you all speak up about the confusion this has been
causing. But we'd need a clear idea on how the design should be before we
can change it's current behaviour. "Make it so it doesn't suck" is a good
design target, but hard to implement :-).

Michael

ModelCitizen
2008-08-16, 10:39
I think it's great that you all speak up about the confusion
Yes, isn't it.

But we'd need a clear idea on how the design should be before we can change it's current behaviour.
This thread has a few purposes, one of which is to open a discussion about how the current Now Playing behaviour could be improved (and if you look at the bug at least two people have already made suggestions).

The other aims are:

1) To explain what the bug is. In my experience many new users think the player UI is eccentric but have trouble explaining why. From watching my friends use my remote it seems to me that *all* the perceived eccentricity is down the the implementation of Now Playing. I've tried my best to explain what is happening and how the present situation came about.
2) To see if others do indeed experience a problem with the Now Playing area (and that it it not solely me who gets very frustrated with it).

It is a particularly difficult area. My solution appeared simple (so simple I knew there had to be a problem with it); dump the Now Playing screen entirely and map the Now Playing button on the remote to the Now Playing (Jump back on wake)* screensaver. I now realise that there are (at least) two problems with this:

1) Not everyone has necessarily chosen the "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)" screensaver in Settings>Player>Screensaver. It is only one of seven options (although personally I fail to see how anyone would want to pick anything but the "Now Playing (Jump back on Wake)"* screensaver).
2) Apparently plugins are allowed to "hijack" the keys which can change the behaviour of the screensaver (or rather, what happens when you use the left arrow to leave the screen saver).

Both these points were pointed out by seasoned SlimDevices users.

I personally think that because this Now Playing area is so complicated (esp. if plugins are involved) that the people who need to partake in the discussion are the people who know and understand the UI very well... which really means the seasoned users and the developers. A discussion between these two groups is the one most likely to reach some sort of useful solution.

Michael. It'd be helpful in your role as a lead developer and as someone who knows the player UI inside out (designed MusicInfo etc) if you could give us your thoughts about the current implemention of Now Playing and any suggestions you might have on how the area could be made simple, intuitive and logical.

I'd also be interested to know what you feel about these two points:

1) That there should not be two screens that are virtually indistinguishable in look and name and that have different functionality applied to them.
2) Selection of a Now Playing screen should not totally divorce a user from what they were doing previously to selecting said screen

I realise that raising this issue has come at a bad time for SlimDevices, but the with new developments there has never been a time where the correct implementation of Now Playing has been more crucial. All the new functionality that SlimDevices have been working so hard on (Last.fm, Pandora, Internet radio and services in general etc) are the items most affected by the current implementation (as I have found out whilst playing around in the small hours with 7.2 on my bedside SlimDevice - please read about my experience using Last.fm above).

The one thing I am sure about is that Now Playing should be simple, intuitive and obvious. No one should have to read a manual to see how it works. Any solution that does not fit this is plainly wrong.

MC

* The "Now Playing (Jump Back on wake)" screensaver has now been renamed and in 7.1/7.2 is called simply "Now Playing", and is the default option.

SadGamerGeek
2008-08-16, 12:02
Wow - ModelCitizen has done a fantastic job of putting into clear language exactly why the "Now Playing" situation is so horribly confusing!

I have had SBs for a few years now, but I've always been so frustrated by how that setting/screen/screensaver functioned... It's just never worked exactly how I wanted it too, or indeed any way that would seem logical....

As has already been said, I really can't understand why anyone would want the (previously default) situation of the "Now Playing" screen appearing when jumping back. When I press the back/left key I always want to just go to the part of the menu hierarchy I was last in.

Oh, and I've voted for that bug :)

Philip Meyer
2008-08-18, 01:26
>Really - I think longtime users will be more confused than newbies, as they've got used to the confusing names. New users will find them much more intuitive to understand.

I think the name change is a good one, but it did confuse me for a few seconds.

I'm in the other camp - I actually like it jumping to Now Playing, rather than returning to where I was. As I leave it running for some time, I can't remember where I was, so jumping to now playing screen means I always know where I am, and if I revisit the browse page, it remembers the menu options I had previously navigated to.

ModelCitizen
2008-08-18, 03:07
I'm in the other camp
No surprise there then. :-)

I actually like it jumping to Now Playing, rather than returning to where I was. As I leave it running for some time, I can't remember where I was, so jumping to now playing screen means I always know where I am, and if I revisit the browse page, it remembers the menu options I had previously navigated to.I wonder if your usage might be similar to another user I spoke to who tended to line up albums and just hit play. The Now Playing functionality was not too much of a problem for him either... mainly because he didn't spend much time using the UI!

I find I am making more use of the services (like Last.fm) and radio (Alien BBC and Shoutcast) now, and am listening to my local music collection in the traditional manner less and less (as a proportion of listening time). The current Now Playing (dis)functionality has become much more apparent when using radio and the music services. Just oneof the reasons is because I end up using the UI much more frequently.

Logitech are focussing more and more on integrating these services into SlimCenter, and also that usage of these services and internet radio are increasing pretty dramatically. This ought to increase the desire of Logitech to sort out the Now Playing area sooner rather than later.

When I used the Sonos product I was strongly and immediately struck by just how logical, simple and straightforward the UI was. I've not got access to the Sonos system at the moment but wonder how they deal with Now Playing stuff and if there are any lessons that might be learnt.

MC

Philip Meyer
2008-08-18, 15:42
I do frequently change my mind on what I want to play, and thus navigate to play other stuff.

However, I just as frequently want to use the now playing screen, eg. to see more detailed information on the currently playing track. In fact, as soon as I start playing something, I tend to navigate myself to the Now Playing screen, rather than wait for the screensaver to jump me to it.

Also, I use TrackStat plugin to rate the current song I am listening to, by press-and-hold 1-5 keys. If the "jump back on wake" screensaver was used, press-and-hold 5 whilst looking at the now-playing screen would instead jump back to the browse menu and initially jumps to items beginning with J (when 5 is pressed), and then start to play my favorite stored in position 5 (when 5.hold is detected). That wipes out what I was previously playing.

I've done this a few times recently, due to changes in the alarm functionality in SC 7.2, and found it infuriating that there was no clue on the screen as to what the next keypress was going to do. So I found myself pressing right-arrow, followed by left-arrow to refresh the screen, removing the screensaver to return me to where I was (which may have been the Now Playing screensaver when I had manually navigated to that screen). Only sometimes a menu may not have a right-arrow menu action, so that would be ignored and and left-arrow would go back a level.

People have different requirements, which is why there's always been an option. The text for the options has changed; the options are now more sensibly named Now Playing or Jump To Now Playing. I think you are saying that Now Playing is also doing a Jump To Now Playing?

Phil

Philip Meyer
2008-08-18, 16:55
How about press-and-hold Now Playing when in browse menus shows the currently playing info briefly (so you don't lose your current place), whereas Now Playing single press takes you to now playing screen (as it currently does).

Philip Meyer
2008-08-18, 17:04
>The one thing I am sure about is that Now Playing should be simple,
>intuitive and obvious. No one should have to read a manual to see how
>it works. Any solution that does not fit this is plainly wrong.
>
Ignoring screensavers for the moment, what do you find not intuitive and obvious about Now Playing? I assume we are talking about SqueezeBox now playing screens, and the Now Playing standard remote button?

Press the button and it shows the now playing screen. Erm, isn't that it?

Maybe if someone could describe the problem, we could all chip in with some suggestions and see where we end up?

ModelCitizen
2008-08-18, 23:43
Maybe if someone could describe the problem, we could all chip in with some suggestions and see where we end up?
Try reading post 10 Phil.

Also, there are at least two later posts in this thread praising the fact that the problem has been described at last!

Is that baby keeping you awake then?
:-)

MC

Philip Meyer
2008-08-19, 12:14
>Try reading post 10 Phil.
>
Post 10 is meaningless to me; I get posts via email - messages threaded properly (except when the email gateway goes bananas and posts get attached to the wrong thread).

>Also, there are at least two later posts in this thread praising the
>fact that the problem has been described at last!
>
I did skim-read through the posts.

I didn't see a concise statement of what the actual problem is.

I'll throw my pet hate into the mix: when on Now Playing screen, pressing now playing to cycle through various display formats is a bit naff and largely anoying. If I accidentally press the Now Playing button twice when navigating manually to Now Playing screen, it changes the screen format, and I have to cycle all the way through the list. I know I can reduce the list of now playing screen options down to one, but still I think that could be improved (I've mentioned it before; I may have filed an enhancement request, can't remember). I think the items on the screen can be broken into optional bits, and a menu of options added to the player UI display settings menu. Eg. "Buffer fullness/current play time/time remaining/None", "Small VU/small spectrum/spectrum analyser/None". Typically, once configured, I wouldn't expect a user to change the display format too often?

That would free up the Now Playing button for another more useful function when on the Now Playing screen (or do nothing).

eg. pressing Now Playing on the Now Playing screen could potentially take you back to the last visited browse folder. (To me, that's not particularly useful, in that I can generally navigate to the artist, album, whatever by drilling into a song from the now playing screen). But that might be what some people would prefer.

>Is that baby keeping you awake then?
Late night/early morning is my main chance of reading the forums, and sadly listening to music (albeit quietly!).

Phil

ModelCitizen
2008-08-19, 13:05
Try reading post 10 Phil.
Post 10 is meaningless to me; I get posts via email - messages threaded properly (except when the email gateway goes bananas and posts get attached to the wrong thread).
Yes I know you get them via email. It's the reason I have to clear up all the misplaced pointy brackets and incorrect colouring every time I reply to your posts in the forum!

Here yer go, post 10:
http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?p=329003#post329003
You could scroll down to "And now my particular bugbear" if you know the history of the Now Playing screensaver. TGhen read the next four posts (or even all of it to save repeating stuff).

It's not concise I'm afraid, but it's difficult to be concise about the Now Playing implementation. The illustration in the post only touches the surface. Tonight I was playing my local music and attempting to *love* (Last.fm) the occasional track. The NP stuff made it quite frustrating.
You can also see other problems with this area described by Patrick Dickson here: http://bugs.slimdevices.com/show_bug.cgi?id=3992.



I'll throw my pet hate into the mix: when on Now Playing screen, pressing now playing to cycle through various display formats is a bit naff and largely anoying. If I accidentally press the Now Playing button twice when navigating manually to Now Playing screen, it changes the screen format, and I have to cycle all the way through the list.

That would free up the Now Playing button for another more useful function when on the Now Playing screen (or do nothing).

Yes the sequencing through various Now Playing configurations seems entirely superfluous and very unneccessary. Patrick Dixon's suggestion that you hit the button once to get to the Now Playing screen and then again to get back to the screen you were at previously seems to me to be nice, simple and make common sense.


eg. pressing Now Playing on the Now Playing screen could potentially take you back to the last visited browse folder. (To me, that's not particularly useful, in that I can generally navigate to the artist, album, whatever by drilling into a song from the now playing screen). But that might be what some people would prefer.

Folder? I think that might be part of the problem. How often do people who use music services and radio want to go back to a folder?
As for the other point, again... that's what I spend far to much of my time doing, navigating back to where I was a few seconds a go. I wouldn't have to if Now Playing was implemented sensibly.


Late night/early morning is my main chance of reading the forums, and sadly listening to music (albeit quietly!).

When I first had a child I got some really good headphones that block out almost all external sound. Yours for fourty quid. :-)

Anyway, enjoy your baby. They're great (and they get better and better!).

MC

Philip Meyer
2008-08-19, 16:15
>Yes I know you get them via email. It's the reason I have to clear up
>all the misplaced pointy brackets and incorrect colouring every time I
>reply to your posts in the forum!
>
By "misplaced pointy brackets", I guess you mean quoted line symbols using ">". They are not misplaced; they look fine in email, and in the forum posts, and when forum posts are replied the replies look fine in email. I guess you mean that if you want to quote that bit in the forum, it wraps the symbols into a blob of text.

>Here yer go, post 10:
Okay, I read it, and I still can't really see any great problem that hasn't already been solved.

The Now Playing screensaver displays the Now Playing screen, and when you press a key it removes the Now Playing screen and you are returned to wherever you were before the screensaver activated. That appears to be what you want, and is now the default.

I actually don't like that for the reasons I previously stated, and Apple appear to agree. After a period of time passes after selecting to play something on an iPod, it jumps to the Now Playing screen. Scrolling/pressing the button performs actions on the Now Playing screen, and you would have to navigate back to play something else.

So to say that the old SC default action of not jumping back is a bad UI that will be unfamiliar to people I find a little unfounded. It should be familiar to a large proportion of the market (people who have experienced iPods).

But it doesn't really matter - there's an option to select either mechanism, or another screensaver (I use Michael Herger's fantastic MusicInfoScreensaver). You could select "None" screensaver, and manually navigate to Now Playing if you prefer.

>Tonight I was playing my local music and attempting to
>*love* (Last.fm) the occasional track. The NP stuff made it quite
>frustrating.
You have to be on the Now Playing screen displaying the current track in order to right-arrow into it to select "Love Track", which makes sense. So you really want to be taken to the Now Playing screen; not taken back to the previous browse menu when you press a key. Otherwise you need to press the Now Playing button to go to the screen. What's the problem?

>Folder? I think that might be part of the problem. How often do people
>who use music services and radio want to go back to a folder?
Sorry, that was a typo; I meant Browse Music *menu* not folder.

If you do navigate to the Now Playing screen, you can quickly get back to the most recent browse music menu, as the previous menu selections are remembered. So, go to browse music, and keep pressing right-arrow until you get where you previously were. I don't really see the point - if that music is playing, why do you want to go back to it - so you can play it again? I guess you are playing a song, want to go back to select another song that is close to the previous one?

Phil

Nonreality
2008-08-19, 18:31
So should one choice be the going to the top menu item and the other choice be like a back button? I know I'm constantly wishing for a back button when I'm on the now playing screen. Now it looks like I could have had it I guess. Maybe that is, I can't seem to get either setting to do anything but the top level. I'll have to play a bit more with it.