Songbird 0.5

Song­bird 0.5 was released last week, and, while not tech­ni­cal­ly incon­sis­tent with claims that its RSS pars­ing had been “improved,” I was dis­ap­point­ed to see that two of my three pod­cast sub­scrip­tions still aren’t com­ing through. The prob­lem has been migrat­ed to a new bug tick­et.

There’s also a new “Media Views” fea­ture, which looks promis­ing. As of now the only add-on to take advan­tage of this is a sim­ple tag-cloud library view, but I imag­ine things could get real­ly elab­o­rate there. Their line, “Tired of music play­ers that look like spread­sheets?”, has me antic­i­pat­ing all kinds of inno­v­a­tive brows­ing envi­ron­ments; pic­ture a nav­i­ga­ble mood-clus­ter ter­rain, or a pannable, zoomable, click­able his­to­ry wave­graph. I’m seri­ous­ly con­sid­er­ing teach­ing myself enough XUL to be able to write a hot­ness add-on.

Amaz­ing­ly, 0.1 was first released over two years ago. And their releas­es have code-names like Bowie and Eno? Who knew.

Hotness 1.6.c.1

Total­ly war­rant­ed sub­ver­sion­ing!

My for­ay into MP3Toys was ulti­mate­ly short-lived, brought to a halt when I found what peo­ple were doing with Sin­gle Col­umn Playlist for foo­bar, par­tic­u­lar­ly the playlist-embed­ded album art. Back in the foo­bar sad­dle, I also gave in and tried out the “offi­cial” Play Count com­po­nent, which I had avoid­ed for so long because it did­n’t sup­port %FIRST_PLAYED%, and because I was­n’t sure I want­ed my play­back sta­tis­tics only kept in the data­base — even though writ­ing them to the files posed a lot of trou­ble as well. Turns out, play­back sta­tis­tics stored by the offi­cial com­po­nent are less sen­si­tive to changes to the files it’s keep­ing track of than the unof­fi­cial one, which means I only have to be a lit­tle care­ful to keep all my stats intact, while being able to play and track files that I’m still seed­ing.

This, along with the invalu­able $cwb_datediff() func­tion pro­vid­ed by Bowron’s new foo_cwb_hooks com­po­nent, called for a rewrite to the hot­ness code, which had been stag­nat­ing in some mar­gin­al­ly com­pat­i­ble 1.5 ver­sion since May. After severe­ly trim­ming the code down and robust­ing things up, I thought of a new and total­ly non-arbi­trary way to soft­en the blow hot­ness scores receive when songs are played. I hat­ed see­ing them leap to 100 every time, and this new soft­en­ing method makes so much sense, uti­liz­ing exist­ing base­line cal­i­bra­tions to keep things a lot more inter­est­ing. How any­body tol­er­at­ed the old method is beyond me.

Any­way, here it is.

I also dug up a lot of old screen­shots this week and I’m plan­ning a nos­tal­gia-fueled ret­ro­spec­tive in the near future.