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View Full Version : SC needs an embedded player, folder.jpg db



Fleury
2008-08-15, 16:36
Having lived with SC and SB3 for nearly a year, there are two areas where this otherwise amazing interface is sadly lacking. An embedded player, such as in Itunes (yuch) or mp3tunes.com, or Pandora etc. etc. would be a gift from the gods. Softsqueeze, while impressive in its ability to do many things, is the buggiest piece of software I have ever used, and I have tried every version and flavor of SS, all have the same fundamental problems. Judging from the dozens of posts on this issue, I am not alone. I spend half my time trying to get SC and SS to play well together, instead of just listening to the music. Each new version of SS has just carried the same old problems forward. Embedded players can' be that difficult to code, judging from their prevalence in other software and web GUI's. The basic interface is sitting right there on the new SC 7.0 GUI, in the guise of a "remote control" for SB and SS.

Another BIG step forward would be for SC to use a single central db file for album art, like Moose. Moose has its problems as well, but one thing it does infinitely better than SC is to remember album art and present it nearly instantly, instead of reinventing the wheel every time album view is invoked. And yes, I've read all the threads about why SC can be so slow to show album art, and the alternatives - rescaling all my 600 plus folder.jpeg's to a uniform size, or chopping up album view into a dozen smaller pages etc. - all truly suck. If Itunes and Moose can do these things well, so can SqueezeCenter!

radish
2008-08-15, 17:43
For the artwork point, SC does cache the resampled images. That's what is happening during the artwork phase of the scan. It's also important to remember that Moose isn't a replacement for SC, it's a replacement GUI for SC. SC is still there under the hood.

As for the embedded player, I assume you mean embedded in the SC web interface? Squeezeplay is on the way, that will be replacing Softsqueeze. If anyone fancies writing up a flash player or something I'm sure no-one would complain :)

radish
2008-08-15, 17:45
Oh and I forgot to mention, the album art is pretty snappy these days (thanks to the caching), loads up basically instantly for me - even over wireless. If you're seeing slowness maybe something else is up?

Fleury
2008-08-16, 07:12
I know Moose is a fancy slipcover for SC, but my point is that the minute or two it takes 600 album covers to load in SC takes about 15 seconds or less in Moose. Moose does a far superior job of handling cover art. If it is drawing on the same db cache file as SC, then something in the web interface is the culprit, maybe Firefox (which I am using) vs. IE?

As to player, yes I am thinking of the upper right corner screen of the SC 7.0, wher the album art, play/pause/synch buttons are located. Squeezeplay might be the answer, though folks like myself who do not have a controller have no clue what to expect. Is it a separate software app like SS or integrated into the SC GUI?

funkstar
2008-08-16, 09:57
Is it a separate software app like SS or integrated into the SC GUI?
SqueezePlay is a seperate app, but isn't written in Java, so doesn't have some of the inherent problems of SoftSqueeze.

radish
2008-08-16, 10:15
I know Moose is a fancy slipcover for SC, but my point is that the minute or two it takes 600 album covers to load in SC takes about 15 seconds or less in Moose. Moose does a far superior job of handling cover art. If it is drawing on the same db cache file as SC, then something in the web interface is the culprit, maybe Firefox (which I am using) vs. IE?

Why are you loading 600 covers? That's always going to take time because of the way HTTP works (only a few can be requested at a time)...but the browsing modes in SC specifically limit the number of images per page for that reason. If Moose is caching the images locally then that will help it's performance a lot - but your web browser should also be doing some caching - maybe increase it's cache size?

funkstar
2008-08-16, 12:21
Why are you loading 600 covers? That's always going to take time because of the way HTTP works (only a few can be requested at a time)
You can up the maximum simultaneous conenctions in FireFox quite easily. May well help a lot.

http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1697,1854513,00.asp

Even if the graphic is cached, when a page is loaded the browser will need to check if it is the newest or not. So every graphic causes a connection plus HTTP request and response. 600 is a lot even for cached content.

radish
2008-08-16, 20:53
You can up the maximum simultaneous conenctions in FireFox quite easily. May well help a lot.

http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1697,1854513,00.asp


But you can't set it differently for local vs internet servers (AFAIK). Setting too high a value could cause issues with remote servers (you end up looking like a DOS attack!). 20 or 30 shouldn't cause problems, but it is against the RFC.



Even if the graphic is cached, when a page is loaded the browser will need to check if it is the newest or not.
Not if the expires headers are set correctly. Looking at what comes back from SC, the standard icons are all served with an expires one hour in the future, the cover art thumbnails have no expires. Might be nice to try putting expires on those, should boost performance for some people at the expense of confusion if you update your art files and they take a while to show up.

Fleury
2008-08-17, 07:37
Firefox is already turbo-charged, I made those revisions months ago - as to why 600 albums, like so many folks I often like to browse cover art for what to play next - a time-honored tradition, flipping through the stack of tunes. I don't think - "gee, what would I like to listen to that starts with J through M"? If I forsake SC altogether for WMP, which I find myself doing more and more often, due to SC/SS glitches and hangs, I have my entire collection spread before me like a living carpet in Windows. Nor do I think it is somehow an inherent limitation of the web GUI, I think Firefox is more than up to the challenge of displaying that many thumbnails in a simple scroll. It is, I believe, a flaw in the basic code or design of the way album art is cached in SC that is the culprit. I don't see Itunes or Ipod even blinking as I cover-flip seamlessly through my entire album collection.

radish
2008-08-17, 10:52
Nor do I think it is somehow an inherent limitation of the web GUI, I think Firefox is more than up to the challenge of displaying that many thumbnails in a simple scroll.
Of course it is, but you're not complaining that it can't display them, but that it can't load the page quickly. Here's a test, go find a page with 600 images on it and see how fast it loads on any browser. It's not a limitation of FF, it's a limitation of how HTTP and web pages work.


I don't see Itunes or Ipod even blinking as I cover-flip seamlessly through my entire album collection.
They're not loading the images over HTTP.