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tipsen
2009-03-17, 07:12
Hi
I've made a first draft of a php-script generating a music catalogue in PDF format from the contents of the SqueezeCenter database. I've attached a couple of pages from the catalogue and would like to know the following:

1. Does anyone else have any interest in a nicely formatted pdf document with albums from SqueezeCenter?
2. Is this just a waste of time since Album Catalog Creator (ACC) already covers this need?
3. If interested in this what would an "optimal" catalogue look like - what information should it contain and what about the layout?

Regards, Tommy Ipsen

browellm
2009-03-17, 08:11
Hi Tommy

I would be very interested. I can't get ACC to work, - it's imcompatible with 64bit OSes.

The formatting on your example looks great.

iPhone
2009-03-17, 08:20
Hi
I've made a first draft of a php-script generating a music catalogue in PDF format from the contents of the SqueezeCenter database. I've attached a couple of pages from the catalogue and would like to know the following:

1. Does anyone else have any interest in a nicely formatted pdf document with albums from SqueezeCenter?
2. Is this just a waste of time since Album Catalog Creator (ACC) already covers this need?
3. If interested in this what would an "optimal" catalogue look like - what information should it contain and what about the layout?

Regards, Tommy Ipsen

Hi Tommy,

Looks good to me. So the layout would do all the albums in artist alphabetical order?

tipsen
2009-03-17, 08:26
Looks good to me. So the layout would do all the albums in artist alphabetical order?
Right now the sort order is album artist, year, albumtitle but I've thought of making this user customizable ie "year, album-artist, album-title", "album-title, year" etc. I also thought about moving compilations to the end of the document since they now appear under "Various Artists" which I find annoying.

cdmackay
2009-03-17, 08:43
tipsen wrote:
> iPhone;407277 Wrote:
>> Looks good to me. So the layout would do all the albums in artist
>> alphabetical order?
> Right now the sort order is album artist, year, albumtitle

I was going to ask about year, as it doesn't seem to be artist/year in
your example...

looks really good...

cheers,
calum.

DaveWr
2009-03-17, 09:03
Looks good to me.

Can you 'chapter' or section it by first letter of artist? just trying to avoid a full reprint on minor changes.

Dave

tipsen
2009-03-17, 09:18
tipsen wrote:
> iPhone;407277 Wrote:
>> Looks good to me. So the layout would do all the albums in artist
>> alphabetical order?
> Right now the sort order is album artist, year, albumtitle

I was going to ask about year, as it doesn't seem to be artist/year in
your example...
It seems to be album-artist (ASCending,primary), year (DEScending,secondary), albumtitle (ASCcending,tertiary) - I can't figure out where it should be wrong?
/Tommy

tipsen
2009-03-17, 09:28
Can you 'chapter' or section it by first letter of artist? just trying to avoid a full reprint on minor changes.

Good idea! I was also a bit annoyed by this seemingly unavoidable waste of paper but didn't think about this approach :-)

agillis
2009-03-17, 10:46
This is good stuff. I think this is really useful code.

cdmackay
2009-03-17, 11:19
tipsen wrote:
> cdmackay;407299 Wrote:
>> tipsen wrote:
>>> iPhone;407277 Wrote:
>>>> Looks good to me. So the layout would do all the albums in artist
>>>> alphabetical order?
>>> Right now the sort order is album artist, year, albumtitle
>> I was going to ask about year, as it doesn't seem to be artist/year in
>>
>> your example...
> It seems to be album-artist (ASCending,primary), year
> (DEScending,secondary), albumtitle (ASCcending,tertiary) - I can't
> figure out where it should be wrong?

my apologies; I saw that it wasn't as I expected, which was
year/ascending, but failed to spot that it was descending instead, sorry.

Is it possible to control that via an option, please?

cheers,
calum.

Phil Leigh
2009-03-17, 11:22
It definitely needs to be YEAR(Ascending)...

epoch1970
2009-03-17, 12:59
I like it a lot.
May I up the ante and suggest a header or footer with page number and an index ?
Extra, the header could include, for example, the value relevant to the sorting method for the 1st album on the current page, or for the 1st and last of the page.
Then browsing is easier since it is relatively easy to spot in which direction you should turn the pages when looking for something.

Something like this
for alpha sort by artist "Gnaris Barkley - St. Elsewhere" or "Gnaris Barkley to Goldfrapp"
and for sort by date: "1995 - Garbage by Garbage" or "1995 - Garbage to 1998 - Gary Moore"

Just my 2cts. I don't know how you've managed to generate the PDF, but I know indexes, pages counts and dynamic headers are not the most trivial parts to get right.

(I hope it's portable, too -linux, mac)

UPDATE. Ah yes, php. Does core php generate PDF? Or you're using another lib ? (make it perl and that will be a tremendous plugin! And Logi could sell a print service)

I want to express my opinion on the interest of the booklet. I think it can bring tremendous gain in usability for some users. Browsing a paper catalog is so SIMPLE. And, it can be beautiful and inspiring -you've already got this covered, it see, and FAST (with proper cues).
I have offered a slim system to my parents. They like the SB3 because they can listen to any CD from the remote, and because it is reliable. They are used to books, and much less to computer which are too complicated.
I am sure they would be delighted using a paper catalog to make their listening choices.

tipsen
2009-03-18, 05:01
tipsen wrote:
> cdmackay;407299 Wrote:
>> tipsen wrote:
>>> iPhone;407277 Wrote:
>>>> Looks good to me. So the layout would do all the albums in artist
>>>> alphabetical order?
>>> Right now the sort order is album artist, year, albumtitle
>> I was going to ask about year, as it doesn't seem to be artist/year in
>>
>> your example...
> It seems to be album-artist (ASCending,primary), year
> (DEScending,secondary), albumtitle (ASCcending,tertiary) - I can't
> figure out where it should be wrong?

my apologies; I saw that it wasn't as I expected, which was
year/ascending, but failed to spot that it was descending instead, sorry.

Is it possible to control that via an option, please?
My idea was to do something like this:

//possible field values: albumartist, albumname, ... (+ASC/DESC)
$config['sort'][1] = 'albumartist ASC';
$config['sort'][2] = 'year DESC';
$config['sort'][3] = 'albumtitle ASC';

Then the sorting is a bit flexible but still not too complicated (I hope).

/Tommy

tipsen
2009-03-18, 05:02
It definitely needs to be YEAR(Ascending)...
I think I'll opt for configurable (See above post) :-)
/Tommy

tipsen
2009-03-18, 16:56
I like it a lot.
May I up the ante and suggest a header or footer with page number and an index ?
Extra, the header could include, for example, the value relevant to the sorting method for the 1st album on the current page, or for the 1st and last of the page.
Then browsing is easier since it is relatively easy to spot in which direction you should turn the pages when looking for something.

Something like this
for alpha sort by artist "Gnaris Barkley - St. Elsewhere" or "Gnaris Barkley to Goldfrapp"
and for sort by date: "1995 - Garbage by Garbage" or "1995 - Garbage to 1998 - Gary Moore"

Just my 2cts. I don't know how you've managed to generate the PDF, but I know indexes, pages counts and dynamic headers are not the most trivial parts to get right.

(I hope it's portable, too -linux, mac)

UPDATE. Ah yes, php. Does core php generate PDF? Or you're using another lib ? (make it perl and that will be a tremendous plugin! And Logi could sell a print service)

I want to express my opinion on the interest of the booklet. I think it can bring tremendous gain in usability for some users. Browsing a paper catalog is so SIMPLE. And, it can be beautiful and inspiring -you've already got this covered, it see, and FAST (with proper cues).
I have offered a slim system to my parents. They like the SB3 because they can listen to any CD from the remote, and because it is reliable. They are used to books, and much less to computer which are too complicated.
I am sure they would be delighted using a paper catalog to make their listening choices.
Thanks for the ideas. I've also considered page numbers and an index/toc. Generally I would like to keep the layout as minimalistic as possible - with the aim of getting the maximum amount of albums on each page. But header and footer could to some degree be user configurable and then it's up to each individual.
Somebody suggested creating "sections" meaning that artists starting with "A" and artists starting with "B" (and so on) are separated by a page break. This is nice since additions to the squeezecenter database will not imply a print of the entire catalogue again - "just" the corresponding section. The page numbering conflicts with this idea unless the numbering scheme is something like A - 1, A - 2, A - 3, B - 1, B - 2,... - any other ideas how to avoid this conflict?
The "program" is a php-script and thus depends on at least a mysqli-extension as well as a pdf-library (TCPDF) - this is NOT an elegant solution but it's what I know - Unfortunately I don't know any PERL and furthermore I don't think PERL will play ball with the pdf library!
Thanks for your ideas and inputs - I will put them on the to do list!
/Tommy

epoch1970
2009-03-19, 04:09
Yes, relative page numbers (A-5) is the way to go I think. You can't do without page numbering if you plan on an index or any sort of lookup table.

While I never used it, it looks like PDF-API2 (on CPAN) can be used to generate a PDF.

Kyle
2009-03-19, 09:02
It's very pretty, but for my collection, the printout would be huge (and my collection is nowhere near as large as some here). I'd be interested in a more compact presentation, or at least the option to do it a bit smaller. There's a lot of wasted space on the pages. I do applaud your effort.

tipsen
2009-03-19, 09:21
It's very pretty, but for my collection, the printout would be huge (and my collection is nowhere near as large as some here). I'd be interested in a more compact presentation, or at least the option to do it a bit smaller. There's a lot of wasted space on the pages. I do applaud your effort.
The conflict as I see it is the wish for as much information as possible vs good compact layout. I would also very much like a more compact design but I fail to see how I can accomplish this - do you have any ideas?
/Tommy

Kyle
2009-03-19, 10:43
The conflict as I see it is the wish for as much information as possible vs good compact layout. I would also very much like a more compact design but I fail to see how I can accomplish this - do you have any ideas?
/Tommy

One way to handle it would be to make the cover art smaller and run the track listings in a paragraph form rather than as a list. For instance, for The Beatles' Abbey Road:

1. Come Together; 2. Something; 3. Maxwell's Silver Hammer; 4. Oh! Darling; 5. Octopus's Garden; etc.

SadGamerGeek
2009-03-20, 03:04
Looks great - I'm definitely interested!

Muele
2009-03-20, 04:40
It looks great.
What I would like to se is a little more emphasis on the artist name and album name, since that is the primary focus for me when browsing albums.

Perhaps you could place them in two sepearte lines below the cover art. Many tracklists are longer than the size of the cover art anyway.

Or perhaps just increase the font a bit.

Actually, I think that a version without the tracklists but with three columns instead would be more useful for me.

SilverRS8
2009-03-20, 10:07
It looks great.
What I would like to se is a little more emphasis on the artist name and album name, since that is the primary focus for me when browsing albums.

Perhaps you could place them in two sepearte lines below the cover art. Many tracklists are longer than the size of the cover art anyway.

Or perhaps just increase the font a bit.

Actually, I think that a version without the tracklists but with three columns instead would be more useful for me.

I do like the page layout thought of this initiave. Nice job. To lessen the paper wasted on prints I think 4 albums on a page is too little.

@Muele, take a look at ACC. This provides the features you mention above.

epoch1970
2009-03-28, 08:03
FYI, I came by the DirectPlayBookPDF plugin ( http://ultratrendy.com:31888/slim/ ).
Direct access via barcode scanning is a great idea, IMHO. I *imagine* a built-in laptop/mobile camera could serve as reader ?

fast eddie
2009-03-28, 12:38
I would also be interested

RalphO
2009-03-30, 07:17
I would bevery interested in this utility as I too cannot get ACC to work for me. Any idea when it will be available to use?

sovietfunk
2009-03-31, 03:32
I have been looking for something like this too, and have not been satisfied by ACC (windows only, tabled output) or the jsqueeze efforts (bugs and java). So I started writing my own php-script. I haven't come as far as producing pdf yet and I'm not sure I see the need. CSS for print media makes pretty and quite flexible printouts. But I'd be very happy to contribute if the OP would post his script here. I will post mine when it's polished a little more. Thus far it's a single file which should drop in zero config on a Ubuntu server.

carp
2009-06-09, 11:54
Is this project still alive?

MrSinatra
2009-06-10, 11:32
i would like a similar layout, but in html not pdf. pdf would be way too huge for my 30000 track collection.

also, i think album artist name should be big and bold, and only appear ONCE, left column justified, as a heading for however many albums come under it, and then the album name, year, and genre come under the artwork (as someone else said)

obviously, great work, these are just suggestions of what i would want.

tipsen
2009-06-10, 14:37
Is this project still alive?
It is not dead anyway - It's lying at my table and looking at me with those sad eyes; "Please fix me!"... and I will get around to doing a sort of final beta - ie. more or less clean up my code and put a version out on the web for people to "play with".

carp
2009-06-11, 03:28
I'm glad to read that you are still working on Music Catalogue.

Now I'm dying to play with it! :)

rgreening
2009-12-03, 08:54
Are we any nearer getting a beta for testing. I cannot get ACC to work on my Squeezeserver running on SLimnas!!

Thanks

oyvindo
2011-01-09, 12:35
Here's how I'd like things to look (see attachement).
A simple plugin that allows me to print my whole collection, or just a selection of it or just revised pages since my last printout - would be great!