Bangarang – a media player

December 7, 2011

Happy hacking pops out a 2.1 holiday cake

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — jamboarder @ 2:19 pm

There’s nothing like doing what you enjoy for no other reason than for the sheer joy of it.  Even better, when such joy produces something you can experience. Bangarang 2.1 is now released.

I really enjoy creating stuff.  Occasionally, if I’m at all like other folks (debatable, I know), I look at the stuff of other people’s passions (music, paintings, architecture, whatever) and say man I wish I could do something like that.  I often find myself wishing for the passion of others while ignoring my own passions, my own motivations.  Working on Bangarang is one of my own avenues of creative expression. I do it with joy.  I’ve learned that, much like others who explore their own avenues of creative expression, I’m most creative when I choose not to do it from a place of anxiety or obligation to the work.  It sounds stupidly simple but I have the most fun when I’m actually having fun.  Fun breeds fun. Joy breeds joy.  And it is not just ok, but better, to take breaks when the fun diminishes.  That is the luxury of a hobby instead of a job. I do it for fun and I can take breaks whenever I want to.  And the fun does diminish.  It is the nature of living.  We can’t go about prancing around like we’re blissfully happy and eternally creative all the time.  We’re not.  And that’s ok, because it allows us to appreciate those joyful times all the more.

And the Bangarang 2.1 release paired with the holiday season is one of those times for me.  Happy holidays!

(Release notes are here).


October 30, 2011

Thanks Kubuntu and Canonical!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — jamboarder @ 2:25 am

So several weeks back, the wonderful Kubuntu folks, on behalf of Canonical, supplied a tablet to help me test modifications I’ve been making to allow Bangarang to be more touch friendly.  Bangarang was shipped with Plasma Active One with some very basic modifications to help make it at least tolerable on a touch device.  I’ve spent a little more time trying to improve the touch mode and the supplied tablet has made it so much easier for testing.

I just committed some of these updates to master and I’m looking for feedback.  Feel free to use the bug tracker or Google+ to share any feedback with me. You can use the comments here as well. Here are a couple current screenshots of Bangarang in touch mode (bangarang –touch):



A few of the updates for touch mode include flickable scrolling in the media lists, playist and Info View, disabled some mouse hover interaction mechanisms and redesigned others to work better in touch mode, adjusted more widget graphics, size and spacing to work better in touch mode, touching the video during playback shows or hides the playback controls and a few bugfixes.  No, I’m not totally pre-occupied with these touch mode enhancements – I’d like to tackle some bugfixing over the next few weeks.  Anyone interested in helping is welcome. 🙂

I’m really grateful to the Kubuntu folks and Canonical for their generosity.  I have much more touch mode work to do and, so far, having a tablet for development testing has made it much more efficient and fun.

September 15, 2011

Bangarang Touchificationism

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — jamboarder @ 9:47 pm

With the recent activity surrounding Plasma Active, I was inspired to do a few simple things that might make Bangarang a “touch” more tolerable on tablet devices.

I had already made a conscious effort in the existing UI design to account for lower resolution displays like netbooks.  Now I hope to get to the threshold of being at least tolerable on tablet devices.  This primarily means accounting for sometimes higher dpis as well as the more obvious transition from a mouse and keyboard to touch.  At a minimum, this means increasing target areas and increasing the pixel size of some visuals and text.  (More completely, it means a full evaluation of all the interaction mechanics necessary to execute the basic use-cases and adjusting the design accordingly).

So the result of this first step are in the following screenshots:

Touch disabled(left) and enabled(right)

And at what I think is the WeTab resolution:

I also disabled drag and drop in the Media Lists view when touch is enabled since it’s likely to be running fullscreen.  Note that this is not all QMLified and fully optimized for touch (including swipe scrolling and all that)… yet.  Like I said, I’m mostly hoping to get it tolerable first.

But here’s the deal. I don’t have a tablet with Plasma Active to test on.  Which means I’m mostly doing this with my overly active imagination. So if anyone would like to test and can provide some feedback you can get the latest from To enable touch, run “bangarang –touch [any character]”.  Thanks!

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