It would be helpful if the Search pane in the Browser had a Type column.
For example, it would make it easier to find an Instrumental track to ‘run up to the news’ at the top of the hour; or an instrumental version of a song.
I know that the Browser is already tight for space horizontally (!), so perhaps this should be an option in Config?
I suggest a checkbox in the GUI, Browser, Browser Options list, named something like: Show Type column in database search results
There’s probably a whole lot more columns people would want to see in the browser. I actually consider introducing an “advanced browser” in a separate window. Or even make the mAirListDB management window available from the main window, so you can just open database management, browse the library as needed, and drag the items into the main playlist.
A full Library pane would indeed be an excellent idea. ;D You would ideally include the Search box (and possibly the mini-PFL Player?) as well.
Um … actually, the Library pane in mAirListDB would also benefit from a full ‘column selector’ system? Something like the methods used in Outlook or MP3Tag, if you see what I mean (menu with tickable items)? I don’t think the Playlist column selection system (manual editing of skin.ini) or settings in Config would be enough: people will probably want to dynamically change the columns displayed at any time, and ideally mAirListDB would ‘remember’ the last-used column configuration and reload it when it is next opened.
The Library pane displays only a limited set of columns; in particular, only colums that exist in the main “items” table, to avoid the overhead introduced by joins with other tables. This includes the fields ID, title, artists (joined into a single string in case there is more than one artist), type, duration (both total and effective), and comment. All other properties, e.g. attributes, are stored in a separate table.
My idea was to add a “Database” button to the toolbar that opens the mAirListDB window, exactly the same window that you get when you run the mAirListDB application from the Start Menu. You can then browse through your library and playlists, and drag any items into the main window as needed.
This would kill two birds with one stone - you get a full featured database browser inside the main application, and people will no longer suffer from SQLite’s “database is locked” errors when trying to access their local mAirListDB from two running instances at the same time.
Opening the new database from the main window is a great idea. If the open database completely covers the playout, it may be a little difficult to drag-n-drop. Perhaps it would be nice to have an “Insert” button on the open Database window. Click on the file to highlight and then click “Insert” to add the file to the playlist. Just a thought
Forgot to ask: Does this mean that the database sees only one “connection” (the playout) when it is accessed from the main toolbar, as opposed to seeing two connections when the database is opened outside the playout?