[vlc-devel] Re: stringreview wxwindows result.

R. Bernstein rocky at panix.com
Sun Jan 25 08:28:32 CET 2004

Derk-Jan Hartman writes:
 > Which is just why the intf isn't clean. However the problem is that you 
 > can only say: Select first subtitle or audio track. You cannot say: 
 > Select English Language
 > This is purely due to the fact that VLC doesn't do preparsing of it's 
 > items nor will it do that in the near future.

Actually, in the VCD world, the correspondence between the language
and the track number is not recorded. So here the best you can do is
say choose subtitle/audio track number x.

 > However i disagree that everything should be possible from the 
 > interface. It adds unnecessary complication for most users. There is 
 > the commandline and the advanced preferences for the demanding users.

Perhaps there could be an "advanced" interface. In fact there already
is an "Extended" Gui. So perhaps just *extend* that concept to the VCD
tab page.

 > MRL must go. It is a bad interface design concept.

Allowing someone to type what they want is bad interface design? Again
I think it gives commonality between what can be typed in a command
line (and also what a program that might call vlc as -- such as I
think some browser plugins might use), and what those dropdowns and
check boxes do. I don't think it all *that* bad. And definitely
necessary until the interface part is complete.

 > Do end users need this? 

Depends on the end user. If the end user is someone authoring a VCD
then perhaps it's helpful since they can go right to the part they
want to check out without having to navigate-through to it.

 > if you ask me, even things like chapters and 
 > titles are a complete waste of space. I'm an advanced user and i 
 > haven't even once used them in my 2 years of heavy usage. 

Do you author VCDs? In testing out the VCD subtitles I've been making
heavy use of going to a specific entry to get to the place that I know
has the subtitle stuff I want to test. Probably if playback control is
addressed better I'd probably use those more often too to check that
things are okay.

But at any rate, I always find it weird to when developers make
judgements about what "end users" need and don't need. Or make a
judgement about whether one is an "advanced" user or not.  For VCD
playback, I'm probably "advanced" in that I probably make use of
what's there. Hey, I'm writing that stuff so I guess I *better*. But
for most of the other things that vlc has to over I'm probably a rank

It would be different if after lots of use, *several* people reported
that such and such was confusing or awkward or should be removed for
novices. With the VCD stuff (and perhaps chapters and titles), I don't
really see there's that much use of the interface to have any feedback
in keeping or removing this or that.

 > It's cool that it's possible, just don't bother me with it in an
 > interface, that's what I have the commandline for. (Maybe i'm too
 > much a mac user :) )

A commandline isn't a panacea for everything :-) I often bring up VLC
with no MRL so that I can then attach via gdb. If I run gdb first, all
those dynamically loadable modules take forever to as gdb intercepts
each. I'm probably not describing anything new for anyone who has
tried to debug vlc. So in this situation, it's cool for me to be able
to type with minimum hassled the MRL in some text box somewhere in the

Again perhaps there's a way allow both with some sort of limited
interface that is user selectable. 

 > I meant that using a label that i have to grep for in the sourcetree to 
 > understand what it does, is not a good label. A label needs to make 
 > clear what something is supposed to do or be used for.

Uh... not sure I completely agree with your assessment that you *have*
to grep the sourcetree. Did you try reading the accompanying VCD

I'll admit that maybe changing "PBC" to "playback" may be an
improvement.  But I think some of your problem here is your lack of
understanding of VCDs or lack of widespread and common use of VCD
terminology. Although I've tried to stick to the same terms and the
terms used by Philips, I think the terms are unfamiliar. (Admittedly
probably others will have the problem you encounter too.) That's
partly why I wrote what's there in doc. No doubt it can be improved.

So part of understaning what's on the VCD tab is understanding
VCDs. No different than say any other plugin. When I look at the
Network tab I see this:

* UDP/RTP Multicast

That's a lot of acronyms. Not that much different than "LID." 

 > I don't think anyone really knows :)

Probably more lack of time and/or interest by those who could help.
If this problem were something completely new, okay. However the
problem has been dealt with for DVDs. (Although probably in not in a
way that can be easily reused). I can sort of take code from the DVD
plugin such as es.c and modify that. In fact I've tried that recently.
I get a core dump in input_UnselectES with not much insight as to
what's gone wrong. Too much of the other VCD support works like
this. So progress on VCD support goes very very slowly.

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