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Subject: Re: Recording screen: breaking the law

Re: Recording screen: breaking the law

From: Ray Lambert <>
Date: Sat, 10 Sep 2005 11:48:06 -0400

Sorry for being a bit late with these responses; been very busy lately...

Phil wrote:

> Ray Lambert wrote:
>> This menu is displayed automatically when a recording is ended using
>> the STOP button. When this menu exits, it returns to the recording
>> screen. The STOP button is one way to exit the menu; thus, when the
>> menu isn't needed, pressing STOP twice will approximate the previous
>> behavior.
> What about a series of recordings started and stopped automatically by
> the trigger? Especially when the last recording has been stopped by
> the trigger we don't have to hit stop any more. Now the user isn't
> forced through the disposition menu and has to wade through that
> annoying klick orgy in order to do something useful.

Ah yes, I did forget about the trigger. My initial reaction is that it
probably falls into the same category as the cuing function: i.e. you
can't have both this feature and control disposition of each recording.
(But read on...)

> Generally I don't think it is a good idea to force the user through an
> additional menu after a recording. This would be one of those
> dialogues like Microsofts "Do you really want to delete?". You get
> used to it and click it away by reflex somewhen. And then you're back
> again in the recording screen and have to go through all that click
> orgy to get somewhere where you can do something useful.

I agree, in general, with this design principal, but I'm not sure it
applies in this case. The "delete?" dialog doesn't add any useful
functionality (the usefulness of confirmations is debatable), especially
when it can be undone. The disposition menu adds significant useful
functionality and at a opportune time. But I also don't really feel
like this is 'forcing' the user to do anything. I don't think it's
unnatural or unreasonable to display the menu at that point. If this
feature had been there since day one, I suspect you'd now think of it as
'natural'. Also, as you pointed out, folks will quickly get used to
'clicking through' it by pressing STOP twice (which was exactly my
intention). Lastly, folks who just don't want it ever can disable it in
the options (in fact, it may make sense to make it disabled by default).

In any case, my arguments are just for argument's sake since I don't
really have any stake in this. It was just a suggestion.

> The disposition menu would add complexity instead of reducing it. When
> you exit the disposition menu with stop the problem I want to fix
> still remains: You have to return to the main menu. What do you want
> to do in the main menu after recording? Adjust settings? That would be
> a very rare case that shouldn't be default. I see only one use case
> where a user might want to return to the main menu: When he explores
> the capability of the menu. My proposal takes care of that use case
> because it does return to the menu when nothing has been recorded.

I think the main reason why the design rule ("return to whence you
came") exists is to avoid confusing the user. If the menu jumps around
in unexpected or non-obvious ways that gives the *appearance* of greater
complexity to the user. While your 'usefulness rationale' is true,
avoiding user confusion trumps it.

In any case, I may have misunderstood your goal: I thought you wanted
more convenient access to these dispositive functions and that is why I
suggested the disposition menu. I wasn't trying to reduce complexity.
I agree that it would be less complex/confusing if the disposition menu
were a context menu (e.g. on F2). OTOH, I still think users would
accept it seeing as these are functions that a user might naturally want
access to at the end of a recording.

> I use the recorder for rock band practice session. We put the thing in
> recording mode, let the trigger take care of separating the songs and
> usually don't bother with the box any more.
> Somewhen the guitar man says to the bass player: "You moron! You
> should have played F in that loud part. You know, that loud part after
> that soft part?". This is the moment when I'd like to go to the
> jukebox, hit one button and playback the last recording.

I understand your use case very well as I also play in a band. :-)
Except my bass player usually takes care of recording us with his MD. I
haven't tried recording with the rockbox and I only discovered the
trigger recently. I've been thinking about trying it with the band.
How does it work for you?

I'm guessing that you have the trigger set-up with a fairly high
threshold so that it doesn't record in-between song conversations? If
so, I can understand more where you're coming from and I can see why my
proposal won't help you. It certainly sounds like the context menu
would better. I presume you have to stop the trigger recording first
and then you could access the context menu or exit the recording screen
altogether (in which case, I like Jens suggestion of exiting to the
browser in the directory where the recordings are). If the context menu
could be made to work it would be slightly easier to return to the
recording screen.

Phil wrote:

> Jens Arnold wrote:
>> - Recording should have the equivalent of "follow playlist",
>> i.e. the drop-back-to-browser would bring you right to the
>> last recorded file with this option enabled.
> If you prefer that option - so be it. Personally I think that it is
> not necessary. I assume you wouldn't like "follow playlist" to control
> both, playback and recording?

I think what Jens wrote here makes a lot of sense and would be very
convenient. I would assume he means that there is a new option to
control this (i.e. it's not tied to the existing "follow playlist" option).


 "The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long
 plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men
 die like dogs ....... There's also a negative side."
   -- Hunter S. Thompson
Received on 2005-09-10

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