Saturday, April 25, 2009

Amarok: A Better Media Device Experience, GSoC 2009

So I have again the pleasure of being selected for Google's Summer of Code for Amarok to scratch some very serious itches concerning media device support in Amarok 2.


  • Playlist Support
  • More GUI Feedback, more intuitive interface
  • UMS(Universal Mass Storage) Support


Actually, iPods in Amarok already have their playlists read on connect, but at the time I wrote the code, the code in Amarok for any collection dealing with playlists wasn't at a satisfactory level yet, which I believe it to be now thanks to the work of a few people, in particular I know that Stecchino (Bart) has worked on it.


The media devices applet seemed like a good idea at first, but it's terrible from a usability standpoint, and since the PUD (Popup Dropper) removes any possibility of dragging-and-dropping tracks onto it, for instance, it doesn't make much sense to have it.  However, I understand there's plans in the works to redo some of Amarok's GUI, part of which will accomodate the previous functions of this applet, and I'll be taking advantage of that.

UMS Support:

Yes!  I swear it this time.  It turned out that building a new collection-based media devices infrastructure more-or-less from scratch took a lot longer than planned last summer, and I did not get to UMS.  Another reason I've held back on it up until now is that media device support in general is going to get a massive refactoring before GSoC begins, to accomodate for simple adding of support not only of UMS devices, but in the future, other types as well.

Ok, now that the explanations of GSoC are out of the way, I move on to something else.

People with media devices, aside from the above, what is it you would like to see in Amarok for devices?  I can list a few off the top of my head, please list more so that I can prioritize perhaps some time for this summer and beyond.

  • MTP Cover Support
  • iPod stale/orphaned scan support
  • Playlist synching with the local collection