In case you didn't catch it: Picard != Picard QT

Given the number of clueless/negative comments on the TRM announcement, I feel it necessary to clue people in to the fact that Picard QT’s interface has been revamped. The workflow has been greatly improved, the user interface is more stable and it does an amazing amount of work for you before you need to use … Continue reading “In case you didn't catch it: Picard != Picard QT”

Given the number of clueless/negative comments on the TRM announcement, I feel it necessary to clue people in to the fact that Picard QT’s interface has been revamped. The workflow has been greatly improved, the user interface is more stable and it does an amazing amount of work for you before you need to use acoustic fingerprinting.

If you feel the need to trash months of hard work that Lukas has done, please at least download it and try it before you make an idiot of yourself.

Picard QT enters beta testing

I’m pleased to announce that Lukáš has released Picard QT version 0.9.0 beta1! Picard QT is the port of Picard away from the troublesome wxWidgets toolkit and over to the much more stable QT toolkit. Along the way Lukas reworked the UI to be more intuitive and added the much anticipated TaggerScript language that gives … Continue reading “Picard QT enters beta testing”

I’m pleased to announce that Lukáš has released Picard QT version 0.9.0 beta1!

Picard QT is the port of Picard away from the troublesome wxWidgets toolkit and over to the much more stable QT toolkit. Along the way Lukas reworked the UI to be more intuitive and added the much anticipated TaggerScript language that gives the user total control over how to tag their music collection. The great news amidst all this is that with QT Picard now runs well on OS X — something that we could never achieve with the wxWidgets toolkit!

We have installers for Windows and Mac OS X and a tarball for our Linux users — grab them from the Picard download page. We’re hoping to have a final release of Picard QT in about a month. In the meantime, please report any bugs you may find.

Picard usage increasing

Wendell from MusicIP just showed me the PUID lookup rate for Picard over the last few months: Looks like more people are using Picard as time goes on. Yay! Now, who is responsible for those two spikes? Bueller?? Technorati Tags: musicbrainz, picard

Wendell from MusicIP just showed me the PUID lookup rate for Picard over the last few months:

picard_puid_lookups.png

Looks like more people are using Picard as time goes on. Yay! Now, who is responsible for those two spikes? Bueller??

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TRM, Picard and Picard on OS X

As the TRM server is getting close to another pruning round it flaked out for a few hours today — its back up and running now. I had hoped that we would’ve come along further in moving Classic Tagger users over to Picard, but instability problems of the wxWindows toolkit continue to plague Picard users. … Continue reading “TRM, Picard and Picard on OS X”

As the TRM server is getting close to another pruning round it flaked out for a few hours today — its back up and running now.

I had hoped that we would’ve come along further in moving Classic Tagger users over to Picard, but instability problems of the wxWindows toolkit continue to plague Picard users. For some users it works great, for others it crashes every 30 seconds, and yet its stable for Lukas who is working on Picard the most. This makes using Picard very difficult and even harder to convince our users who love the track based Classic Tagger to move to Picard.

Given this, we plan to do the following:

  1. Extend the end-of-life deadline for TRM until the end of 2006.
  2. Migrate Picard away from wxWindows and start using the Python bindings for the QT toolkit.
  3. Revamp the user interface in Picard to support both track based tagging and album based tagging.
  4. Make the Picard user interface easier to use for new users and offer methods other than drag and drop to tag files.

We hope to complete all of this before the end of the year. But, should we not make that deadline, we’ll extend it again until most everyone feels that Picard has replaced the Classic Tagger. The key metric for turning off the TRM server is to watch the traffic to the TRM server slow to a near crawl so that when we do turn it off that only stragglers will be affected.

Tobias Rundström has volunteered to work on a UI mock-up of the new Picard UI that will be based on our Picard user interface brainstorming. Once he has done that we’ll post screenshots or maybe even an application for people to look at and give us feedback on.

Finally, the switch to QT will also have positive benefits for Picard on Mac OS X. The QT toolkit is considerably more stable on the Mac than wxWindows and that will enable us to finally roll out a Mac OS X version of the tagger. I understand that there is frustration about the lack of a tagger on OS X — Geof Morris has now even offered up a bounty for someone to develop a new UI for Picard for the Mac. But, there isn’t anything we can do for a few months — please sit tight. We’re aware of the situation and are as unhappy about it as you are!

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Picard 0.7.0 released

Lukas finished the final round of bug reports in Picard and prepared the 0.7.0 final release. This is the first non-beta release of Picard with MusicDNS acoustic fingerprinting. The changes are: Automatic identifying of audio files using MusicDNS acoustic fingerprinting technology. Support for automatic translations of non-English artist names. New file name format variable %albumtracks. … Continue reading “Picard 0.7.0 released”

Lukas finished the final round of bug reports in Picard and prepared the 0.7.0 final release. This is the first non-beta release of Picard with MusicDNS acoustic fingerprinting. The changes are:

  • Automatic identifying of audio files using MusicDNS acoustic fingerprinting technology.
  • Support for automatic translations of non-English artist names.
  • New file name format variable %albumtracks.
  • Support for connecting to the Internet throught a proxy server.
  • Option to write “Windows-safe” file names on non-Windows systems.
  • Detection of GNOME and KDE default browser settings, in addition to the BROWSER environment variable.
  • New file formats: Speex, WavPack, TTA !

Download links:

Thanks to Lukas for his hard work on this release!

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Picard 0.7.0-beta3 released!

Picard version 0.7.0 Beta 3 has been just released. Downloads: picard-0.7.0-beta3.tar.gz – source code (290 kB) picard-setup-0.7.0-beta3.exe – Windows installer (5.78 MB) various Linux packages Changes from 0.7.0-beta2: support for GNOME and KDE default browser settings, in addition to the BROWSER environment variable (#1257) fixed crashing in Pango (#1256) added tport= parameter to the CD … Continue reading “Picard 0.7.0-beta3 released!”

Picard version 0.7.0 Beta 3 has been just released.

Downloads:

Changes from 0.7.0-beta2:

  • support for GNOME and KDE default browser settings, in addition to the BROWSER
    environment variable (#1257)
  • fixed crashing in Pango (#1256)
  • added tport= parameter to the CD lookup URLs (#1328)
  • new code for checking user name and password that doesn’t block Picard
    when internet connection is down (#1247)
  • fixed bug that caused directory selector to become “sticky” after drag&drop
    on Windows (#1183)
  • support for Windows-compatible file names also on non-Windows systems (#1014)
  • and a couple of other minor bug fixes

Picard 0.7.0-beta2 released!

Lukas says: Picard version 0.7.0 Beta 2 has been just released. This version contains mostly bug fixes from the previous beta version. See the full list for details. Downloads: picard-0.7.0-beta2.tar.gz Linux tarball (287 kB) picard-setup-0.7.0-beta2.exe Windows installer (5.62 MB) I’ve also compiled a packages for Ubuntu 5.10 “Breezy Badger”, so Ubuntu users can install Picard … Continue reading “Picard 0.7.0-beta2 released!”

Lukas says:

Picard version 0.7.0 Beta 2 has been just released. This version contains mostly bug fixes from the previous beta version. See the full list for details.

Downloads:

I’ve also compiled a packages for Ubuntu 5.10 “Breezy Badger”, so Ubuntu users can install Picard by “apt-get install picard” or Synaptic. See PicardLinuxInstall for details.

Lukas

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PUIDs: WTF?

Given that my elaborations are not making things more clear, I will try one last time to make things more clear. But before I go on, remember that there are bugs in the system right now. What I am going to explain is NOT how its currently working. If you observe behavior that is different … Continue reading “PUIDs: WTF?”

Given that my elaborations are not making things more clear, I will try one last time to make things more clear. But before I go on, remember that there are bugs in the system right now. What I am going to explain is NOT how its currently working. If you observe behavior that is different from what I am saying, its BECAUSE THE SYSTEM ISN’T WORKING PROPERLY YET! If you’re confused and don’t understand, stop using Picard 0.7.0.

Music analysis vs fingerprinting:

There are two processes that MusicIP makes available. Fingerprinting and music analysis. Let’s touch on music analysis first — this is the process that takes a while (Yes, I know its slow. Yes, I know its going to take days to analyze your collection. Please stop telling me that!) The process of doing music analysis examines up to 10 minutes of a track and examines all sorts of things I know nothing about. All I know is that in order to generate a new PUID, you must analyze a track fully. This full data collection portion is what allows the MusicIP mixer to generate playlists of similar music. This is the secret sauce that makes MusicIP tick and thus this is not going to be open sourced, no matter how much we ask.

Fingerprinting is much smaller process — it only analyzes about 2 minutes of the track. You cannot generate a new PUID to insert into the database from the fingerprinting process. There is not enough information in this process. There is enough information to create a PUID that is suitable for doing an identification, but not for submission. This works a lot different than TRM — this system doesn’t create rampant amounts of useless fingerprints that will never be used.

Submitting PUID’s from Picard:

When the process works, you do a full music analysis on a track and the system generates a PUID for you within 24 hours. But this is not working right now, so Picard will not likely prompt you to submit PUIDs. This means the submit button stays greyed out.

Why can’t we have Picard generate PUIDs?

Because we don’t have that code. Please stop asking for ponies — we’re fresh out and you can’t have one. Telling us that this sucks won’t make it any better. Please keep your comments to constructive criticism.

I don’t understand — its not working as you say it should:

Did I mention that there are some bugs? If it doesn’t work for you, stop using it. We’ll fix it.

Rude comments:

“Reading up on good interface design would also be a suggestion Just google good user interface design” — Please tell me where your FREE software is so I can download it and insult your hard work. I’m sorry that this FREE program isn’t working for you.

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Picard: Common questions answered

There seem to be many questions about Picard at the moment and a lot of people who love the old tagger interface and are frustrated with Picard’s UI. So, let me address the feedback we’re getting from our users: “MBTagger was perfect. Picard sucks.” — Ok, this feedback doesn’t help much, but we understand that … Continue reading “Picard: Common questions answered”

There seem to be many questions about Picard at the moment and a lot of people who love the old tagger interface and are frustrated with Picard’s UI. So, let me address the feedback we’re getting from our users:

  • MBTagger was perfect. Picard sucks.” — Ok, this feedback doesn’t help much, but we understand that you are frustrated. We’re working to improve Picard as we speak and the latest release is a beta release, so please bear with us.
  • I don’t understand the Picard interface.” — We understand that there are some people who prefer to tag tracks, not albums. We also understand that the UI is not immediately intuitive. We have plans to fix this, and to allow Picard to be usable by people who prefer to tag tracks and those who prefer to tag albums. For our thoughts on this improved interface, check out this wiki page. For more documentation on how to actually use Picard, see HowToTagFilesWithPicard. And to calm down all the people who are threatening to leave the project if the old MBTagger goes away, we plan to improve the interface of Picard way before the old MBTagger stops working.
  • Picard keeps crashing on me.” — It works for us, which is sucky since we can’t fix your crashes if it doesn’t crash for us. We’re actively soliciting feedback from people who can reproduce crashes. If you have a case where Picard crashes for you consistently and repeatably, please file a bug report.
  • Picard screws up my files!” — First, check to make sure you’re writing the right version of id3v2 tags. Depending on what other programs you use, you may need to switch to version 2.3/2.4 or vice versa. We know about some incompatibilities between the MusicIP Mixer and Picard. We’re going to start working on these issues soon.
  • How do I get PUID’s into MB?” — This answer has two parts. First, to create a new PUID for a file that MB doesn’t have a PUID for currently, you need to download and run the file through the MusicIP Mixer. (Yes, we know not everyone wants to use the Mixer application — for you we’re going to create stand-alone analyzer applications soon). Once a file goes through the MusicIP Mixer, in theory it should become available to the MusicDNS.org service (that MusicBrainz uses) within 24 hours. In practice, this is not happening yet. The MusicIP folks are working on this! Once the MusicDNS.org service has a PUID, you can re run the file through Picard and it should pick up the PUID and prompt you to submit the PUID to MB. Again, there may be bugs in the process — we’re working to iron out the bugs as we speak.

What can you do if you’re affected by these issues? Here is a quick check list for you:

  1. Do you have an issue not addressed herein?
  2. Can you reproduce the issue?
  3. Yes: Please review the open bugs for picard and if this bug doesn’t already exist, please add a new one.
  4. No: Please stop using Picard 0.7.0 for the time being and go back to Picard 0.6.0 or the old MB Tagger. Then wait for a new release of Picard and see if your problems have improved.

Bottom line: If you’re frustrated by how things are working right now, go back to a non-beta release and give us more time to iron out these issues. We’re aware that you are frustrated and we’re working on it. But if people keep pestering us with the same issues over and over again, it only keeps us from fixing actual bugs.

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