Author Topic: Have child windows not lock main screen  (Read 3928 times)

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pencilhead

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Have child windows not lock main screen
« on: July 27, 2009, 01:57:11 am »
Hi,
would it be possible to have pop up windows not lock main program window (ie. open in non-modal mode).

I am performing a bulk download of posters.
ie.
Select a bunch of movies in left hand pane ( they have already been populated from imdb/import from excel etc).
When I am unsure of which poster matches the move, I would like to be able to select the movie from main screen.
I could then make an informed decision on which is the correct poster to choose based on the information that is presented on main screen.


For example:
I select 10 movies from main screen, go to "Get posters from amazon" plugin.
The program queries amazon and pops up a list of thumbnails for me to choose from for each movie.
I select the one I want.
Program inserts poster and queries the next movie in the list.
now.
Program queries a movie (for example "taken"). There are 10 different movies called "taken" and I can't remember what the movie is.
The thumbnail dialogue displays 10 different posters for "Taken" and I can't remember which one is mine.

I can either guess and review it at the end, skip it and review it at the end or cancel manually check the details of the movie "taken" from main screen and start the run again.

What I would like is the ability to click on the movie "taken" in the main screen while the thumbnail dialogue box is open. I could then see what the movie is about and match it to the thumbnail box that has been presented from amazon.

I believe all that needs to be done is for the popup box to be open in non-modal mode. This will allow interaction with the main screen while the popup is open.

Regards
PH
« Last Edit: August 23, 2009, 03:28:41 am by rick.ca »

Offline rick.ca

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2009, 02:33:22 am »
Quote
I believe all that needs to be done is for the popup box to be open in non-modal mode.

I have no idea what would be involved in implementing this or what the pitfalls might be. It seems clear, however, it's unnecessary if the plugin is finding posters with 100% accuracy...

If Amazon poster searches are so inaccurate, maybe we should be asking if there's any way that can be improved. Poster plugin searches should be happening after the movie information download has been completed—so there should be enough "good" information with which to do a search that gives accurate results. So maybe the plugin should use Amazon's advanced search page, using Title and Director to ensure it gets only correct posters. Amazon, being what it is, will also throw in crap like packaged sets, but those appear at the end of the list and are easy to spot.

I think the problems and shortcomings of the Amazon plugin (an perhaps similar ones) need to be addressed first.

The suggestion refers to pop-up windows in general, but I can't think of how this might be applicable in other circumstances. There are things about the file scan results dialog that make me wish I could access other parts of the program, but I think these are issues that should be addressed in the design of the file scanner.

Offline patch

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2009, 05:27:42 am »
I believe all that needs to be done is for the popup box to be open in non-modal mode. This will allow interaction with the main screen while the popup is open.
+1
Provided it does not add significant complexity to the code.

pencilhead

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2009, 02:32:18 pm »
I'll try and repost so I don't offend rick.ca fine sensibilities and have my posts deleted...

It seems clear, however, it's unnecessary if the plugin is finding posters with 100% accuracy...
You don't understand my issue.
Posters are being found with 100% accuracy.  I would like the ability to select the movie from the main database while the poster selection dialogue box is open. So I can make an informed choice about which poster to choose when there is confusion.

Again to try and explain....
I have 100 movies I have impored, run the plugin from IMDB got all the information, but no posters have downloaded (for whatever reason).
When I run the get posters plugin, I get presented with a choice of posters.
I then choose a poster to match my movie.
If I can't remember what the movie is about and there are multiple different movies with the same name, I am unable to select the details from the main window. ie The main window can't be activated. For non-programmers this is called "modal mode"
I want to be able to compare the downloaded thumbnails with the information that currently resides in the database.
For this to happen, the program needs to be modified so the window is opened in "non-modal mode". This will allow the user to interact with the main database program, select the movie to be reviewed and then choose the appropriate poster as desired.

This has nothing to do worth plugins, how amazon works etc, it is an enhancement to the main program, that will allow me to overcome my particular mouse trap and at least 1 other person.

Offline nostra

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2009, 09:04:59 pm »
Of course it is possible to make PVD act like this, but considering the fact that I do not really understand why Title, Original title and Year (which are shown in the selection dialog) are not enough for proper movie selection and that implementation of it will indeed need more than trivial coding, this new behavoir will not be implemented any time soon. Sorry  :-\
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Offline rick.ca

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2009, 09:12:41 pm »
Of course it is possible to make PVD act like this...

You beat me to it. That's what I get for being so long-winded. ::)

I hope you will consider my summary of the current situation at the end of this post.

Program queries a movie (for example "taken"). There are 10 different movies called "taken" and I can't remember what the movie is. The thumbnail dialogue displays 10 different posters for "Taken" and I can't remember which one is mine.

Posters are being found with 100% accuracy.  I would like the ability to select the movie from the main database while the poster selection dialogue box is open. So I can make an informed choice about which poster to choose when there is confusion.

Please consider there might be good reason why I don't understand your issue. Your first statement/example clearly implies the plugin has found posters for 10 different movies. You dismissed my suggestion this could be fixed by an improved plugin, and now make the assumption "posters are being found with 100% accuracy." The only way I can reconcile these two statements is to assume the scenario you are attempting to describe is there are 10 different movies called "Taken" in your database. The poster plugin correctly matches posters to each version, but you don't know which version it is referring to when asked to choose a poster. If you were shown the movie panel you would know which version the poster was for, and that would have a bearing on your judgement as to which poster is most appropriate.

At this point, I wouldn't dare suggest this scenario is a fair representation of your issue, but just taking it as a hypothesis, I would consider the following in judging the necessity for any changes to the program:

  • The situation where there are multiple movies of the same name in the database and posters are being added at the same time and the user is unable to distinguish them based on the information presented by the plugin is rare.

  • A good poster, by it's nature, will invoke the memory of any movie the user is familiar with. So in many cases, the question of which movie is being processed is answered by the poster thumbnails themselves.

  • Not having sufficient information to judge which poster to choose, the user still has the option to select all likely candidates, and decide based on the downloaded posters.

  • Even if the user has all the information about the movie available, they are still not in a position to accurately judge the quality of posters. This can only be done by examining the downloaded poster. This implies two things. First, it may be prudent to download multiple posters, even if one seems most appropriate. Second, if one is as concerned about quality as is suggested by a need to have all available information to make a choice of thumbnail, they are very likely going to be compelled to review the quality of all the downloaded posters in any case.

My conclusion (and it's just my opinion!) is that the suggested feature only warrants consideration if:

  • It can be implemented easily, without compromising the speed of the plugin or the integrity of the database;

  • It's unlikely to impede or confuse users who are happy to use the plugins in the manner for which they were designed;

  • It's implementation will not feed the notion a perfect poster selection should be possible or desirable for the plugin as it is currently designed.

I don't understand the technical challenges or limitations, but the proposal might be more feasible if it only involved displaying the information panel for the movie being processed, rather than the plugin running in "non-modal mode."

Whatever might be done in this area, fixing and improving the existing functions of the plugins should be the immediate priority. That includes:

  • Fixing the the IMDb plugin so it once again downloads posters.

  • If possible, making the Amazon plugins near-100% accurate by using the advanced search page as mentioned here.

  • If possible, avoiding the Google ban problem with the IMPAwards plugin as mentioned here.

  • Enabling all poster plugins to choose and download the first available poster in Silent Mode. Even better would be the ability to specify the number of posters to download (the first 2 or 3 would be more practical than "all").

With everything functioning in the manner originally intended, opinions about what other changes are be necessary might change.

Offline patch

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2009, 11:35:15 pm »
Of course it is possible to make PVD act like this, but considering the fact that I do not really understand why Title, Original title and Year (which are shown in the selection dialog) are not enough for proper movie selection and that implementation of it will indeed need more than trivial coding, this new behavoir will not be implemented any time soon. Sorry  :-\

I will have to check, but for me the year is often not available when being asked to choose poster during scan folder. Will see if a can characterise when.

In the scan folder screen, adding the ability to open containing folder would help me (sometimes I need to look at files near the movie file such as nfo file, poster or watch start of movie) to be sure which imdb record I would like to link it to.

pencilhead

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2009, 03:09:31 am »
Hi,
It seems that we are still not understanding each other.

A picture is worth  a thousand words so here goes....

1.
I manually enter movie titles, import / whatever to have a list of movies.
I then highlight all movies in left hand pane and import information from IMDB. (all good so far)
(see pic1)

2.
After movie information has been downloaded (With no posters).
All movies in left hand side are again selected and import posters from amazon (or any other source) is run
(see pic2)

3. Plugin runs and finds posters.
User selects the poster they want to import and plugin moves onto the next movie in the list.
(see pic3)

4. Plugin selects a movie and displays poster selection. The user (me) can't remember what the movie is about. (the information already exists as it has already been imported in step1 (imdb import phase)). If I could access the movie from main screen, I could look at the cast, movie description etc and make an informed decision about which poster to choose.
I want to be able to select the movie from the main screen while the select poster dialogue is open.
(see pic4)
(see pic4)


Off course it is nostra's perogative to do this or not as he see fit. It is his program after all, but the issue needs to be understood, which I don't believe it has up until now.

An alternative solution would be to have the main screen update to match each search.

Regards
PH

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Offline nostra

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Re: Have new windows not lock main screen (Non-modal mode)
« Reply #8 on: August 02, 2009, 11:23:08 pm »
The issue does not seem important enough to me to start thinking of the best solution for the problem or implement smth. When there is a good stable and full featured version 1 I could take some time for problems like this, but it is a long way to go before this happens...

Quote
# If possible, making the Amazon plugins near-100% accurate by using the advanced search page as mentioned here.

# If possible, avoiding the Google ban problem with the IMPAwards plugin as mentioned here.

# Enabling all poster plugins to choose and download the first available poster in Silent Mode. Even better would be the ability to specify the number of posters to download (the first 2 or 3 would be more practical than "all").

I'll check what can be done to improve the plugin system in future.
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