Bangarang – a media player

April 12, 2010

Preparing Breakfast (or what’s up in bangarang:master)

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — jamboarder @ 8:26 pm

Warning: this is a screenshot-laden post.  Nobody likes those kind of posts about a project in development so feel free to ignore what follows… 🙂

It’s been roughly two months since the last release of Bangarang, so I thought I share a little of what’s been happening for the 2.0 (Breakfast) release.  Just to be clear, we’re still probably at least a couple months away from even an alpha release, so anything described here exists in a so-seriously-early-I-can’t-even-call-it-pre-alpha state.

One of the focal points for this next release is putting information in front of the user that helps them make decisions quickly.  It’s generically identified as “Media semantics” on the target feature list and most of the underlying framework is now in place to start using throughout the app.  It took some time to work out but it is starting to take shape.  The idea is to take information accumulated by users in the normal course of enjoying their media and use that to provide context-relevant info that should hopefully help the user make decisions.  The screenshots clippings below show the first cut at how this’ll look and work:

The info view from the 1.0 version has been transformed into the sidebar on the right (shown or hidden with the familiar Info icon).  The idea is for the information in this sidebar to reflect contextual information for whatever is currently being viewed/selected in the main media list view.  So when the list of artists are being shown it shows contextual information about all artists.  When an artist is selected it shows information about that artist – supplemented by some info from dbpedia – and so on…

Information about a selected media item is available in the sidebar as well (metadata is editable directly in the item view as well).

While the screenshots above are for Music, similiar data is/will be provided for Movies, TV shows, Actors, etc. as well.  It is definitely not all working perfectly or smoothly yet and not all types of data has all the contextual information yet, but I hope this provides a little info on how this particular feature might be shaping up.  It is definitely not the end-all of ideas for media semantics but underlying the framework – which includes the usual heavy dose of nepomuk – allows for a decent amount of flexibility that would certainly allow for other even more interesting contextual semantics (never played, most played at this time of day/year, unfinished movies, playback timelines, etc.).  Perhaps I’ll blog separately on this framework.

By the way, if anyone is interested in contributing to KDE I encourage you to consider Nepomuk. It is neat technology and Sebastian is awesome and definitely welcomes participation.

All the work so far hasn’t just been on this feature though.  Notice the album art in the in album list screenshot and basic bookmarking support was added this weekend.

Hope you found this interesting and don’t worry, I’m still trying to fix bugs, maintaining some ui restraint and working on the basics. 🙂

As always if anyone is interested in helping please feel free to holler at me (especially if you live in North America or the Caribbean, but all are welcome). See the gitorious project page for more info.

Thanks for reading!



  1. Bookmarks! Awesome!

    Are bookmarks Nepomuk resources, or the existing KDE bookmarks system?

    Comment by Will Stephenson — April 12, 2010 @ 9:30 pm

    • At the moment the bookmarks are application-specific. My hope for the final implementation is to store them in Nepomuk; that way they’ll be available to other apps. I’ll coordinate with the nepomuk folks to propose an ontology update for bookmarks. I just want to gather some basic usage data first.

      Comment by jamboarder — April 13, 2010 @ 7:02 am

      • cayyrm Tocudhown! That’s a really cool way of putting it!

        Comment by Rumor — April 20, 2011 @ 6:02 pm

  2. What are your font settings? Looks very crisp and readable. Nothing like my default settings >_<

    Comment by Pöh — April 12, 2010 @ 11:04 pm

    • Droid Sans, 96dpi, subpixel hinting

      Comment by jamboarder — April 13, 2010 @ 7:03 am

      • And probably using the “Slight” hinting style by the looks of it, just to add to that.

        Comment by Eike Hein — April 13, 2010 @ 11:11 am

  3. Looks very promising!

    Don’t worry about screenshot-laden posts, everybody love screenshots! (or at least they should :))

    Comment by Aurélien Gâteau — April 12, 2010 @ 11:07 pm

  4. I really prefer screenshots and terse text over long wordy explainations. Thanks for the update! I love a multimedia player for it’s nice looks too 🙂

    Comment by Diederik — April 12, 2010 @ 11:16 pm

  5. Can this info view shared between amarok and Bangarang? I think if you can import the plasma stuff into Bangarang, I think you get all this meta info from web automagically…

    Comment by pns — April 12, 2010 @ 11:40 pm

  6. I love these kind of posts 🙂

    Comment by Dread Knight — April 13, 2010 @ 12:12 am

  7. hey, this is awesome.. Nice to see in which direction this project goes. I’m using is since the first release. 🙂
    The only problem i see is the fact, that nepomuk is really slow and kills a lot of the system resources. 😦 But thats no reason to not support/use it but its a point the developers has to work on.


    Comment by sxe — April 13, 2010 @ 2:11 am

  8. Oh, that interface is so cute! I love the use of checkboard-like tables, it’s both good-looking and user-friendly! Well done!

    Comment by Cumulus007 — April 13, 2010 @ 5:45 am

  9. And Bangarang just got so much better after existing great features.
    Soon you are starting to have so much features that you need to stop adding them 😉

    I need to fill a wish for the Playlist-bar. The Ctrl+H is great but it should resize the window to correct size. And playlist could be a transparent over a video ot show up when hovering over the video so it would not draw black bar top of the video.

    Comment by Fri13 — April 13, 2010 @ 6:33 am

    • I hoping to do an overlay as well. Just hope I can figure out how to do it correctly. 🙂

      Comment by jamboarder — April 13, 2010 @ 7:06 am

  10. I was first shocked thinking that Amarok finally has a good design. Then a read that it’s Bangarang.
    Looks very nice!

    Comment by Victor — April 13, 2010 @ 11:04 am

  11. I just noticed that the gitorious-link is broken, it should be

    That means I will try to compile bangarang now 😉


    Comment by Mike — April 13, 2010 @ 12:14 pm

  12. Hi,
    I’m currently using Bangarang 1.0.1, so this might be a solved problem, but I had to notice that searching the library and even browsing it is quite slow. I have ~7000 files at minimum, is this due to the use of Nepomuk? Right now this is just an annoying dealbreaker for me as any other player is faster. If my problem exists due to Nepomuk, could there be done anything about it besides avoiding Nepomuk? (I think it’s not very clever to use a slower backend just because it’s this shiny new technology (slower means slower than other DBs)).


    Comment by pheder — April 14, 2010 @ 12:31 pm

    • The speed of browsing depends on the speed of your nepomuk backend. Use of nepomuk is not predicated solely on whether it is shiny or new, but on the fact that it provides useful features not available elsewhere. Hope this helps and feel free to email me with any support questions.

      Comment by Andrew Lake — April 14, 2010 @ 12:35 pm

      • Well that’s sad somehow as I use Virtuoso which is the fastest backend atm. I don’t know how other Media Players manage this, maybe they have their Library in the Memory constantly. Still I think Bangarang is the best Player for creating and listening to playlists and it’s layout feels quite nice even if it’s uncommon. I like the colors in your screenshots, they are very pleasant for the eyes!

        Thanks for this great software 🙂

        Comment by pheder — April 14, 2010 @ 12:49 pm

      • There is still some optimizing I can do to improve bangarang’s interaction with virtuoso, so give me a little time. Thanks much for the encouragement! 🙂

        Comment by Andrew Lake — April 14, 2010 @ 12:52 pm

  13. Looke great!
    Any news on external subtitle support?
    You said you planned to implement it in 2.0

    Comment by skarn — April 17, 2010 @ 3:12 am

    • It’s not done yet but it’s on the feature target list, so I don’t intend to release 2.0 without it. Hope this helps. 🙂

      Comment by jamboarder — April 17, 2010 @ 5:49 am

  14. Something is telling me that Bangarang 2 will be serious competition for Amarok. I could finally try Bangarang 1 as intended, and it’s beyond awesome. Go on!

    (…and, please, give me a little tray icon to minimize Bangarang to… I’m tired of closing the program with the close button when I want to send the player to its non existent tray icon…)

    Comment by Alejandro Nova — May 5, 2010 @ 10:06 pm

  15. […] information in the InfoView varies depending on the selected media items.  I’ve already blogged about the Recently Played, Highest Rated and Frequently Played info boxes displayed in this […]

    Pingback by Bangarang – What the dilly yo?! « Bangarang – a media player — November 21, 2010 @ 11:56 pm

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