Shimmer for gmusicbrowser

Introduction

We have decided to take a stab at one of our favorite music players/libraries, gmusicbrowser, and make the user interface more accessible and beautiful. In addition to our new layout, we want to provide gmusicbrowser in our PPA also because gmusicbrowser hasn’t seen a stable release in quite a while, even though the development branch is quite stable. So to bring you all the new features we’re bringing you the packages directly from Git.

To achieve our goals we modified gmusicbrowser’s surface (mainly through the customizable layout-system, but also small changes to core) and created a new icon-theme (heavily inspired by DanRabbit’s elementary theme): both the shimmer layout and the elementary-icon theme are used by default in our PPA.

We also decided to replace gmusicbrowser’s original logo, as the camel with the headphones doesn’t scale well and there is on svg-source of the original, so no (easy) way to create high-resolution icons. Our icon – a green musical note – is designed to be generic, because we think that branding an application isn’t always helpful/useful for users.

Here’s where we got with our efforts so far:

Features (in progress)

To give you some taste of where we stand, here’s a few of the core features of our layout.
Below you can see our songtree-view. you can easily access the three different view-modes (list, tree, mosaic) with the widgets on the top right next to the search-field.

The songtree-view groups albums and as a subgrouping also multiple discs. We figured this is a sensible way of accessing your albums.

shimmer's songtree-view

Next up is the simple list-view. you can easily add and re/move columns here to quickly access the information you want. sometimes this can be nicer than having the album grouping (e.g. when preparing a playlist).

shimmer list-view

The third view-mode is the so-called mosaic-view. If you’re a fan of cover-artwork (like us) you’ll love this. You get an overview of all your albums in a glimpse and if you know what the cover looks like it’ll be easy to spot what you’re looking for here – apart from that it simply looks gorgeous!

gmb_mosaicview

One more thing we’d like to show you is the breadcrumb-like system we use for displaying song-data. Not only does it provide a logical structure (trackname « album « artist), but it is also click-sensitive to provide you with quick access to either albums from an artist or tracks from an album.

shimmer artist-popup shimmer album-popup

There’s definitely more development to come! If you feel like filing bugs, do it against the gmb-shimmer project in Launchpad.

Comments and pingbacks for Shimmer for gmusicbrowser

  • Add some shimmer to gmusicbrowser « The Shimmer Project, June 9, 2010 13:28

    [...] here you go, the project page has been updated and nice shiny screenshots have been [...]

  • gmusicbrowser- one of the finest linux audio players « linuxhindu, January 11, 2011 14:57

    [...] users can add the ppa from the shimmer project to install the latest gmusicbrowser sudo add-apt-repository ppa:shimmerproject/ppa && sudo [...]

  • einzztein, August 21, 2011 05:06

    Awesome. Hope you fix the can of worms that gtk2mozembed poses.

  • Simon Steinbeiß, September 5, 2011 15:59

    hey einzztein,
    sorry for the late reply. to be honest i’m not sure we’ll be able to do that. in fact one reason i wrote the artistinfo-plugin was that mozembed just wasn’t working well at all.
    what features are you using mozembed for? if it’s a common use-case, then maybe a custom plugin could take better care of it than mozembed.

  • anonymous, September 9, 2011 11:14

    Hi Simon

    This is a really great layout, but when I first used it, there were three columns instead of the two like you see in the screenshots. There was the first column, which consisted of the album art/lyrics/etc. (the same as in the screenshots) but instead of having one big mosaic, songtree or list view, it was divided in to a column for the songtree, and another for the mosaic.

    The problem is when I hit the buttons in the toolbar to switch between mosaic/songtree/list-view, the last two columns disappeared, and now I can’t get them back.

    I have tried purging gmusicbrowser and re-installing, done complete un-installations from synaptic, and even attempted to manually sift through my file system to make sure all the settings had been deleted. Is there anything else I could try? I really preferred the three column view. It looked better imo, and was a tiny bit more ergonomic.

  • Brad, October 18, 2011 04:55

    Any chance of GTK3 for gmusicbrowser? :)

  • Simon Steinbeiß, October 20, 2011 13:50

    that depends mostly on the time and will the main developer (quentin sculo) has. but i think at some point – depending on quickly gtk3 spreads and stabilizes – this will come.

  • Simon Steinbeiß, October 20, 2011 13:52

    sorry for the late reply and hi anonymous,
    that was actually a bug in the layout-config (or less a bug but a leftover of old config in combination with changed widgets). there were never (intentionally) three columns.
    but if you’d want that it’d be easy to do. feel free to contact me via email or irc and i can help you with that.

  • Jo, October 31, 2011 09:42

    Hello Simon,

    Is possible for you implementing crossfade between songs ?

  • SiDi, November 10, 2011 01:04

    Hey guys.

    I think I found a good word to sum up my critics of the last days about the current state of gmusicbrowser: please evaluate *findability* of the information. How many ways to a given piece of information, how easily can it be reached, is the way you can reach information consistent, is it intuitively found?

    Of course this calls to usability studies, but I think it’s important to understand that. I like the way some things have been done quite much, but (regardless of the technical bugs of course), I think there is a lot of room for improvement in the way music can be found…

    Next I’ll rant about how it can be organized and played (ie playlists, yessir!)

  • SiDi, November 10, 2011 01:05

    Also, why is my comment not in a cute blue frame like Simon’s? Meh.

  • SiDi, November 10, 2011 01:06

    And also, why did my first comment disappear? Re-meh.

  • Simon Steinbeiß, November 10, 2011 08:21

    @ Jo,
    as far as I can remember crossfading used to be in gstreamer – but highly unstable and causing a lot of crashes (not something easily fixable in gmusicbrowser). So I guess that’s pending on gstreamer rather than gmusicbrowser.

    @ SiDi,
    About “finding music” > have you tried the (imho rather nice) search-function? ;D
    No seriously, I think this topic is a bit hard to discuss in wordpress-comments, but we can try when we’re both in irc.

  • Kasper, December 25, 2011 15:56

    Is this a bug or something I did wrong myself?
    I use Arch Linux and installed gmusicbrowser-shimmer from git.
    Everything worked nice until a few days ago.

    neither Locale::Messages, nor Locale::gettext found -> no translations
    print() on closed filehandle $fifofh at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 313.
    Error loading Net::DBus :
    Base class package “Net::DBus::Object” is empty.
    (Perhaps you need to ‘use’ the module which defines that package first,
    or make that module available in @INC (@INC contains: /usr/bin/../share/gmusicbrowser /usr/lib/perl5/site_perl /usr/share/perl5/site_perl /usr/lib/perl5/vendor_perl /usr/share/perl5/vendor_perl /usr/lib/perl5/core_perl /usr/share/perl5/core_perl .).
    at /usr/bin/../share/gmusicbrowser/gmusicbrowser_dbus.pm line 13
    BEGIN failed–compilation aborted at /usr/bin/../share/gmusicbrowser/gmusicbrowser_dbus.pm line 13.
    Compilation failed in require at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 337.
    => controlling gmusicbrowser through DBus won’t be possible.

    Name “GMB::DBus::bus” used only once: possible typo at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 320.
    GStreamer.pm not found
    -> gstreamer output won’t be available.
    Reading saved tags in /home/kasper/.config/gmusicbrowser/gmbrc …
    Reading saved tags in /home/kasper/.config/gmusicbrowser/gmbrc … done
    These commands were not found : flac123, mpg321, ogg123
    => these file types won’t be played by the 123 output : oga, flac
    Usage: Gtk2::Widget::set_visible(widget, visible) at /usr/bin/../share/gmusicbrowser/gmusicbrowser_list.pm line 1779.
    Use of uninitialized value $_ in string ne at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 6810 during global destruction.
    Use of uninitialized value $_ in string ne at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 6810 during global destruction.

  • Kasper, December 25, 2011 16:08

    After installing perl-gtk2-webkit, perl-net-dbus and perl-gtk2-trayicon I got the following:
    (I already had alsa-utils and mplayer2 installed)

    neither Locale::Messages, nor Locale::gettext found -> no translations
    print() on closed filehandle $fifofh at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 313.
    GStreamer.pm not found
    -> gstreamer output won’t be available.
    Reading saved tags in /home/kasper/.config/gmusicbrowser/gmbrc …
    Reading saved tags in /home/kasper/.config/gmusicbrowser/gmbrc … done
    These commands were not found : flac123, mpg321, ogg123
    => these file types won’t be played by the 123 output : oga, flac
    Usage: Gtk2::Widget::set_visible(widget, visible) at /usr/bin/../share/gmusicbrowser/gmusicbrowser_list.pm line 1779.
    Use of uninitialized value $_ in string ne at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 6810 during global destruction.
    Use of uninitialized value $_ in string ne at /usr/bin/gmusicbrowser line 6810 during global destruction.

Also see our other projects.

Description

  • Shimmer for gmusicbrowser provides gmusicbrowser a completely new layout as well as other improvements in the overall looks of the application.

License

  • GNU General Public License 3

People in the project

  • Contact
    Simon Steinbeiß

    Credits
    Simon Steinbeiß, Pasi Lallinaho

Project links