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  • Select album to play via album art

    First off, I'd like to say great work on Mobile Impact. Its by far the cleanest and fastest carpc frontend I have used thus far. Thus far, I only have one request/suggestion for it. I personally have all my music stored and ofganized on one drive as "Drive_Letter:\music\artist\album\*.mp3

    In each album I have the artists album art for that album. What I am putting on my wish list is a way to either a) browse to the artists directory and just have each album art shown in a grid and then all you need to do is click on that album art for that album to play. b) or alternately, and even better IMHO, is to have a db of some sort and have all the album art displayed on the same grid all on one page and scrollable via scrollbars or up/down arrows.

    Hopefully this makes sense. Centrafuse works this way, but its awfully slow on my via ml10000.
    Do you feel that this might ever make it into Mobile Impact? If it did have this capability it would truly blow away the competition. Frodoplayer has something similar to the "a" option above, but frodoplayer is a pretty ugly player no matter how its skinned. Your frontend has a much more simple and organized layout to it and a much more professional feel. But no offense to the makers and developers of Frodoplayer, its just my opinion and preference thats all.

    Keep up the good work. Even without an album art browser I'll probably stick with Mobile Impact

    Gumby

  • #2
    here is a screenshot of the centrafuse album art viewer in case you have no clue what I am talking about.
    Attached Files

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    • #3
      Originally posted by xGumbyx
      First off, I'd like to say great work on Mobile Impact. Its by far the cleanest and fastest carpc frontend I have used thus far. Thus far, I only have one request/suggestion for it. I personally have all my music stored and ofganized on one drive as "Drive_Letter:\music\artist\album\*.mp3

      In each album I have the artists album art for that album. What I am putting on my wish list is a way to either a) browse to the artists directory and just have each album art shown in a grid and then all you need to do is click on that album art for that album to play. b) or alternately, and even better IMHO, is to have a db of some sort and have all the album art displayed on the same grid all on one page and scrollable via scrollbars or up/down arrows.

      Hopefully this makes sense. Centrafuse works this way, but its awfully slow on my via ml10000.
      Do you feel that this might ever make it into Mobile Impact? If it did have this capability it would truly blow away the competition. Frodoplayer has something similar to the "a" option above, but frodoplayer is a pretty ugly player no matter how its skinned. Your frontend has a much more simple and organized layout to it and a much more professional feel. But no offense to the makers and developers of Frodoplayer, its just my opinion and preference thats all.

      Keep up the good work. Even without an album art browser I'll probably stick with Mobile Impact

      Gumby
      Im very glad you like it. Its very gratifying hearing your comments that reflect exactly what I tried to accomplish with the interface.

      Regarding the interface, the program has the ability to view album art, it shows in the visualization area when you click on the directory. If the program is set to find album art, it looks for the folder.jpg file in the directory that you open. It also has the ability to switch between album art and visualization with a delay that the user can set. Check in the instructions for a more exact description on how to set it up. Regarding suggestion number 2, This is a really cool feature that centrifuse has and I can see where it would be really helpful while your driving to be able to just identify the album by cover instead of trying to read text. I kind of like the idea of having a database and then the program would know where to go for the songs according to the data. I might toss this around and see what I can come up with, Im thinking of kind of a jukebox interface, but with the Ipod library organization potential in mind, where you can view by Genre, or Artist etc. Thanks for the input.
      Thanks for the input.
      Mobile Impact
      Highly innovative car computer multimedia/entertainment system software.
      http://mobileimpact.biz.tm

      Comment


      • #4
        Yes, I've already looked into the viewing of album art. What you have for album art viewing is not quite what I mean but I think you realize that. What soft of timeframe do your releases have? Are you seriously going to look into an album art view for adding to playlist and if so do you have any idea how long it would take to impliment? I'd be interested in helping you test and debug it if you do eventually implement it. Not meaning to push here, I'd just be super excited if your software included this feature

        Feel free to send me a message if you like.

        Gumby

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by xGumbyx
          Yes, I've already looked into the viewing of album art. What you have for album art viewing is not quite what I mean but I think you realize that. What soft of timeframe do your releases have? Are you seriously going to look into an album art view for adding to playlist and if so do you have any idea how long it would take to impliment? I'd be interested in helping you test and debug it if you do eventually implement it. Not meaning to push here, I'd just be super excited if your software included this feature

          Feel free to send me a message if you like.

          Gumby
          How about something like this?
          Mobile Impact
          Highly innovative car computer multimedia/entertainment system software.
          http://mobileimpact.biz.tm

          Comment


          • #6
            Close to what I was thinking of but not quite. What I had in mind was moreso the album art viewable when you are wanting to add music in the playlist editor. The way I had it invisioned was a person would go to the playlist editor and choose something like "View by Album Art" and then instead of directory listings appearing in the right hand side it would show album art of the whole music database. Then the user would either a) highlight that album and choose "Add to Playlist" or b) just click on that Album cover and have the Album automagically added to their playlist. This isn't so great for adding individual songs, but then a person could go to a "View by Directory" option in the playlist editor if that is what they wanted to do. I know when I am in my car I usually tend to listen to albums, if I wanted to listen to individual songs I would probably just create playlists before I started driving. Making the playlist editor browsable by album art is a more safe way to add/change a playlist while driving (in my opinion). It takes less time to view a quick image or even to read the artist/album displayed below the image you have there in your example. I am guessing that a persons mp3 collection would have to be fairly organized for this to work. ie: their music would have to be sorted by Artist/Album/songs.mp3 and that the album art would have to be within the Artist/Album/ directory as a default filename ie: default.jpg. If there is no album art present then possibly a default logo would appear.

            What you currently have in MI for viewing the album art (top left corner of auidio player screen) once the music is playing after being added to the playlist looks great to me. Hopefully I've explained what I see to be a great feature better this time.

            Gumby

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by xGumbyx
              Close to what I was thinking of but not quite. What I had in mind was moreso the album art viewable when you are wanting to add music in the playlist editor. The way I had it invisioned was a person would go to the playlist editor and choose something like "View by Album Art" and then instead of directory listings appearing in the right hand side it would show album art of the whole music database. Then the user would either a) highlight that album and choose "Add to Playlist" or b) just click on that Album cover and have the Album automagically added to their playlist. This isn't so great for adding individual songs, but then a person could go to a "View by Directory" option in the playlist editor if that is what they wanted to do. I know when I am in my car I usually tend to listen to albums, if I wanted to listen to individual songs I would probably just create playlists before I started driving. Making the playlist editor browsable by album art is a more safe way to add/change a playlist while driving (in my opinion). It takes less time to view a quick image or even to read the artist/album displayed below the image you have there in your example. I am guessing that a persons mp3 collection would have to be fairly organized for this to work. ie: their music would have to be sorted by Artist/Album/songs.mp3 and that the album art would have to be within the Artist/Album/ directory as a default filename ie: default.jpg. If there is no album art present then possibly a default logo would appear.

              What you currently have in MI for viewing the album art (top left corner of auidio player screen) once the music is playing after being added to the playlist looks great to me. Hopefully I've explained what I see to be a great feature better this time.

              Gumby
              I understand now. The main Audio/Video module file list works the exact same way that the Playlist module file list works, so it would be no problem to add this feature, however one small difficulty is that you would have to set up album art/genre viewing mode in the settings to tell the program to view in folder/file mode or in album art list mode. I could put a button on the Audio/Video module to change the mode, but there isnt any space for it. So if you wanted to create a playlist using the album art list mode, you would have to go into settings, set it for album art/genre list mode which restarts MI to be able to create your playlist using album art, so after making the playlist you would have to go back into settings and change it back to file list mode to be able to see the playlist. Album art relies on the folder.jpg file as you know and there can only be a single folder.jpg file in each music folder. This wouldnt work for a playlist as the files are in different folders. You also wouldnt want the files to be moved into a single folder either. So the only thing that prevents making it easy to use is the lack of physical space to place a mode changing button. Any ideas?
              Mobile Impact
              Highly innovative car computer multimedia/entertainment system software.
              http://mobileimpact.biz.tm

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by reddeath30
                How about something like this?
                This is hot!! RED whens a new release coming?!?! I can't wait!!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by juve021
                  This is hot!! RED whens a new release coming?!?! I can't wait!!!
                  My goal is by the end of the month. There will also be a genre view that will take you to the Album Arts.
                  Mobile Impact
                  Highly innovative car computer multimedia/entertainment system software.
                  http://mobileimpact.biz.tm

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    So what you are saying is get our requests/wish lists in to you soon :P

                    Gumby

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by xGumbyx
                      So what you are saying is get our requests/wish lists in to you soon :P

                      Gumby
                      Yep!
                      I Hava a question regarding viewing by album art to everyone. To make this work fast and to keep things organized and keep the coding as simple and efficient as possible. The program must have the music files in a single location, and for the genre list view to work as well the music must be organized into folders that the installer creates, so here is the folder structure that it will create, then the user simply places their music in them accordingly.

                      C:\Media\Audio
                      -------------------Rock,Pop
                      ---------------------------Album Folder (User Placed)
                      ---------------------------Album Folder (User Placed)
                      ---------------------------Album Folder (User Placed)
                      -------------------Alternative,Punk
                      -------------------Rap,Hip-Hop
                      -------------------Soul,R&B
                      -------------------Country
                      -------------------Jazz
                      -------------------Electronic,Dance
                      -------------------World,Reggae
                      -------------------Classical
                      -------------------Oldies
                      -------------------New Age
                      -------------------Christian,Gospel
                      -------------------Blues
                      -------------------Folk
                      -------------------Vocal,Easy Listening
                      -------------------Soundtracks,Musicals
                      -------------------Children
                      -------------------Comedy,Spoken Word
                      -------------------Latin
                      -------------------Holiday Music
                      -------------------Singles

                      The reason why I ask this is; the program goes out and opens every single file folder and looks for the folder.jpg file when the user clicks on one of these Genre Folders and then produces the list with album art in it. If it had to look at every single folder on the hard drive for the folder.jpg or look at every mp3 file, open the id3 tag to find the album cover it would take forever and a day, so I chose to organize it in these genre folders. It then records the path of all the albums that it found album art for within that genre and places it in a hidden list.
                      When the user clicks on one of the album covers, the mp3 files are shown in the list and the user can select what they want to listen to.
                      If they hit the View Albums button, the same Album cover list shows and the user can select a different album.
                      When the user hits the Change Genre button to go back to viewing just the Genre list, the hidden list is then wiped clear until the user hits another Genre in the list again.

                      How does everyone feel about how this works? Im kind of looking for a better way to represent the genres than the existing file list. The users have the option to use the Album cover list mode or the regular file list like it currently is.
                      Please give me all your feedback. Im interested in any input I can get. Thanks in advance!
                      Mobile Impact
                      Highly innovative car computer multimedia/entertainment system software.
                      http://mobileimpact.biz.tm

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The way you have posted above will get a lot of gripes from users of Mobile Impact. Most users dont want to be forced to have their music in a specific place let alone have to organize it by genre within that specific place. What centrafuse does to rememdy the problem of searching the folders each time its started is to have an "Import Music To Database" function. I personally think this is a "simple" and elegant way to go. I am pretty sure that centrafuse doesnt check the id3 tag for each song to find its album art, it just uses the "default.jpg" of the directory that the file resides in.

                        This can cause issues if the users doesnt keep a well organized mp3 collection, but that shouldnt be for you, the developer, to worry about.... unless of course you want to code some sort of music organizer that will scan id3 tags and organize the persons collection for them via artist/album/song.mp3. But again I really dont think the onus should be on you to do that.

                        Centrafuse also simplifies things a bit by not browsing by genre when viewing the album art. It just lists all album art found within directories the users has chosen in the settings page for their music to reside. Any directory not containing album art gets a generic image.

                        Maybe I am thinking Centrafuse works so great in this regards because I already have my music sorted very neatly. My directory structure is as follows.

                        D:\music\
                        ----------->Artist1
                        ----------->Artist2
                        ----------->Artist3
                        ----------->Artist4
                        ----------->Artist5
                        --------------------->Album1
                        --------------------->Album2
                        --------------------->Album3
                        -------------------------------->song1.mp3
                        -------------------------------->song2.mp3
                        -------------------------------->song3.mp3
                        -------------------------------->song4.mp3

                        etc etc

                        Now every user shouldnt be forced to sort their music like this, but it should be expected that they should have their music somewhat organized for Mobile Impact to reach its highest potential as a media player. If they dont, then any type of viewing/adding music whether it be by album art or not is going to be difficult for them.

                        What IMHO would be ideal is if the user could, in the settins page, choose their default music directory or possibly even a few music directories, and then they could click an "Import Music" button and that button would have the function of creating a database of some type of what files are where or even which directories contain which album art. That way, when a user selects "view by album art" in the playlist editor all the info is there already in the database as to which album art to display for each subdirectoy of the default music directory thus taking a lot less time than searching the default music directory recursively for album art.

                        If you are really wanting to sort the musics album art by genre might I suggest this. Use the same type of database that would be used for viewing ALL album art, but have an extra "genre" row/column in the db for each album. This "genre" row would be populated by the first song listed in each albums directory and would not have to be done for each song, nor album. but only once for each artist.

                        Whew, I once again hope I have been clear enough. If you are unsure again feel free to comment.

                        Gumby

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Guys,
                          This is a great direction to take with Mobile Impact. I have tried them all and have settled on this nice and simple app. The only thing it lacks for me is the "sort by genre" feature. I agree with Gumby, please see if this is possible because it has been one feature I have been looking for in every front end.

                          On a second note. anybody have a good shareware app that snags album art and places it in the coresponding folder? I've tried PC jukebox with no success.
                          Thanks!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by flyingbeaver26
                            Guys,
                            This is a great direction to take with Mobile Impact. I have tried them all and have settled on this nice and simple app. The only thing it lacks for me is the "sort by genre" feature. I agree with Gumby, please see if this is possible because it has been one feature I have been looking for in every front end.

                            On a second note. anybody have a good shareware app that snags album art and places it in the coresponding folder? I've tried PC jukebox with no success.
                            Thanks!
                            Here is my preferred album art downloader. Its a pretty easy to use program. The best part about this program is that it is totally free.
                            http://louhi.kempele.fi/~skyostil/pr....6.0-setup.exe

                            One way to set up your music by genre is to set up genre folders like this:


                            So when you are in MI in the filelist mode it will display like this:



                            I tried to come up with some code that reads the ID3 tag on mp3 files and then sorts them by genre, but can you imagine how scrambled the list would be for someone with som 500 to 800 full albums. No to mention that the program would have to read the tag from each and every file. If you had in the hundreds of files, this process would take way too long. Even if stored in a database of some sort.
                            Mobile Impact
                            Highly innovative car computer multimedia/entertainment system software.
                            http://mobileimpact.biz.tm

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Reddeath30, something to look at to make it "easier" and faster to sort albums by genre would be to only look at hte first audio file in a given directory and if the info is stored in a database of sorts to have all music within that directory be classified by the first songs id3 genre. So if a program is creating the genre entries in its database, it searches recursively through each artist directory, ie: Artist1->album1->song1.mp3 this file would create the genre for all of the mp3's within the Artst1 directory. I'm not even sure that this is a posability, but it might be an option if it is and it would save a lot of time in creating a database. Again, a user might run into a problem if their collection isnt organized but as I have said in the past, that is their responsbility not yours.

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