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Subject: Re: Smart Playlist -any progress? any takers?
From: deonarin_at_netscape.net
Date: 2004-09-01


Hmm, sounds familiar...

http://sourceforge.net/tracker/index.php?func=detail&aid=1001358&group_id=44306&atid=439120

See my comment dated 2004-08-01 18:48.

I'm sure there is a way to do this. We could have the host OS generate the database, and come up with some really really efficent way of searching it in the firmware. The problem is that there would be cost involved: quite a bit of cost. That cost could be speed, disk access, ram, developer time (although we typically assume that is free ;) ) etc. However you balance that cost, it detracts from the purpose of the player, to play audio. It is a neat feature, yes... but what are you willing to give up to get that feature?

For the extra expense of an iPod or a $3500 Bose player, you could probably justify the inclusion of extra resources: a faster processor, and more memory. Perhaps more flash ROM. The hardware in these archos units, however, is stretched pretty thin for what it is already doing.

It is a facinating problem, however. Perhaps someday I (or someone else) will come up with a solution... but I wouldn't hold your breath :)

Some depth on the things I've thought of:

Have the PC read all of the tags and sort them. Exploit the extra power the PC has to do the 'heavy lifting'. This still doesn't solve the problem of searching this database. Plus, ideally you'd have indexes for every possilble tag, (ie, you'd want to be able to sort by artist, title, album, genre, track number, year, etc) which could take up a decent bit of time and space. Storing them as flat files on the drive might be challenging, since we'd have to be able to update without re-writing the whole file.

So assuming you could do that: pre-generate all of the tag indicies and store it on the drive. Now you still have to be able to map tags to filenames and back again quickly... in the minimum amount of RAM and processor time, since you want to see these results ASAP. Oh, and don't spin the disk, that wastes battery... ;)

Like I said, I think it can be done... but at what cost? Would it be useful as a feature? Plus, the work involved would probably be weeks or months of development time. I'm not a database design engineer, (ie person who designs databases, I do work with databases and understand them) and you'd probably want one to get a good implementation of this.

~Jonathan

Fred <speedup_at_gmail.com> wrote:

>Those features would require a database of all the files that the unit
>contains, like say the iPod, and may be extremely slow on an Archos
>machine. Furthermore, Rockbox would need to access the HDD more often
>and therefore shorten the battery life (autonomy). The 2Mb of ram that
>the Archos units contain are not enough to afford a database-driven
>system. Maybe Rockbox's port to another type of unit (say iPod or
>iRiver) would make this possible, but right now the hardware is the
>limit. Rockbox allready does incredible things with my FMR, but it
>slowly tends to reach the hardware limits ;)
>
>Fred
>
>On Tue, 31 Aug 2004 18:50:19 -0700, Hara Hara <sat_at_rcn.com> wrote:
>> Hi All
>>
>> first thanks for a great software. It just works great first
>> time without any major fiddling.
>>
>> In the playlist requested feature list, I saw the Weighted /
>> Smart playlist.
>>
>> It is pretty much what $3500 Bose Lifestyle 48 system does
>> with their uMusic.
>>
>> With approx 20GB of songs if would be extremely nice if one
>> could create this dynamic playlist as we hear them. Another
>> neat feature would automatically adding songs that fit the
>> same genre as our top 10 songs. (Feature present in uMusic also).
>>
>> I would definitely like feedback from the developers and users.
>>
>> Thanks
>> Hara
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