Poll

Select 4 most important features

Grid view
79 (11%)
Customizable toolbar
53 (7.4%)
Customizable views
114 (15.8%)
Sorting and grouping custom fields
76 (10.5%)
Client-Server support
33 (4.6%)
Retrieve multiple posters
36 (5%)
Customizable Hotkeys
23 (3.2%)
Printing
62 (8.6%)
Automatic screenshot making
32 (4.4%)
Append database function
35 (4.9%)
Copy and Paste records from one DB to another
55 (7.6%)
Customizable file scanner
39 (5.4%)
Read only version of PVD
33 (4.6%)
Tag export/import (like ID3 for mp3)
29 (4%)
Preferred release title (more info)
22 (3.1%)

Total Members Voted: 146

Author Topic: Vote: Features for 0.9.9  (Read 93171 times)

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Offline MilesAhead

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #140 on: December 25, 2008, 09:29:01 pm »
Going along with the idea of an "append database" function as shown in the poll, I would like the ability to SPLIT a database, or more to the point, the ability to select a number of records (via clicking, search, or whatever) and save them directly to a new database. I understand that I could export to a CSV file, start a new database, then import from the CSV, but this approach involves extra steps and might not properly transfer all the database info if the export template isn't set up just right.

From the user's perspective, it would be easier to have a built-in feature that just saves all selected records as a new database, automatically including all fields (including custom ones).  Right now, the only real way to achieve the same functionality is to "save as" to a new file, then select and delete all the records I don't want.

AimHere

This sounds like it could be used to "patch a hole" if there isn't another way.  Say if you
get a glitch and the ID sequence goes off by 1 from some point on.  In any case my biggest feature request that's not in the list would be any kind of Help even if only a Readme.txt with the most important info.  The program is easy to use. It's just when you are trying to recover from an error or glitch or manual mistake, then it would be nice to have some guidance from a local file.  Doesn't have to be .chm.  I can search a .txt with my text editor.  Just so the info is someplace local.
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Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #141 on: December 25, 2008, 10:01:21 pm »
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This sounds like it could be used to "patch a hole" if there isn't another way.

Rebuilding a database, by whatever means, will have no impact on the ID sequence.

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my biggest feature request that's not in the list would be any kind of Help

We could hold a vote on "Should the developer spend less time developing and more time writing help documentation?" but we all know what the result would be. ;)

Besides, what's wrong with the Support forum?! :'(

Offline MilesAhead

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #142 on: December 25, 2008, 10:19:39 pm »
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This sounds like it could be used to "patch a hole" if there isn't another way.

Rebuilding a database, by whatever means, will have no impact on the ID sequence.

That seems to be where the glitch is likely to happen so that's my concern.  Reediting by hand is a real drag.  For basic Title <=> number location any word processor with auto line numbering will do that much.  Seems like the basic function being bullet proof would be the priority.. but I guess I'm old school. :)

Quote
We could hold a vote on "Should the developer spend less time developing and more time writing help documentation?" but we all know what the result would be. ;)

Besides, what's wrong with the Support forum?! :'(

It's a disturbing trend I see in lots of software lately.  The developer does just about zero documentation then you wait for the Number 1 User to write a guide.  I develop software myself and it seems like a basic readme takes like 10 minutes. I don't understand the total neglect of documentation. Like I said, plain text is fine. Just some basic info would seem logical.

What's wrong with a forum is when my electric goes down with a hurricane, it comes back in a day or 2.  The Cable/internet sometimes stays down for 10 days. All the more frustrating if there's no local help file.  Likewise I'm not too thrilled with software that stops working because you can't connect to the licensing database online when the ISP is down etc..

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Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #143 on: December 26, 2008, 08:46:11 am »
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That seems to be where the glitch is likely to happen so that's my concern.

Maybe I'm missing something here. What exactly is this glitch you're anticipating? Has it happened? Can you reproduce it? If there's a bug somewhere, we should be tracking it down and getting it fixed, not looking for ways to repair the damage it does.

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The Cable/internet sometimes stays down for 10 days.

OMG! I'd be calling the suicide prevention line, not looking for a help file to read. ;)

Offline MilesAhead

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #144 on: December 26, 2008, 08:06:11 pm »

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OMG! I'd be calling the suicide prevention line, not looking for a help file to read. ;)

Only if you still had phone service!!  heh heh

Nah I think what happened was an anomaly. If I get anything weird that I think can be fixed I'll be glad to provide details.  afa the other stuff goes, esp. if the programmer is writing the software for personal use, as I do with my utilities, then stuff is going to go where the author wants etc..  It's one of those things where if somebody was there in person to show you how to do something once then everything makes sense. I guess I just hate asking stupid questions like "what does the Go Button do?" because I think somebody will answer "er, it GOES!!, duh!" or something.  Doctors make the worst patients they say. :)

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Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #145 on: December 26, 2008, 08:41:53 pm »
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the programmer is writing the software for personal use

True, but he always does his best to accommodate users' wishes. I think he does a better job at that than many commercial developers, who often come to believe there is some better way to make money than to listen to your customers.

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"what does the Go Button do?"

But answering those questions helps develop my communication skills. And I need more practise in being sensitive and understanding. Sometimes, the only right answer is, "What would you like the Go Button to do?" ;D

Offline jshepler

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #146 on: December 29, 2008, 08:41:49 pm »
Ok. I am very new to this program having just downloaded and installed it about 30 minutes ago after reading through quite a few posts in the forums. (I always like to read up on something before I just dive in willy nilly)  ;)
After playing around for a very short while, it seems like this program could be very useful.
For what it is worth, I would like to submit a few comment/suggestions that I cam to my mind.
  • Portability. I know that this was brought up previously and you can run it portably, but it seems like a untouted feature that I think could possibly be greatly appreciated by many users. (I personally am trying to make all of my apps portable so that I can use them on any of the 7-10 machines that I use on a regular basis and not have to maintain seperate installs for each)
  • I like the whole Client/Server option, I think that this is a good goal and do not remember what version it was supposed to be in, but look forward to it. Can you tell any more about it? Is there going to be any security, what kind of optimization could be used, how can it be set up in this way, etc.? Also, would there be a way to convert the databse over to use SQL instead of Firebird? (I only ask because I am more familiar with that and have not found a free plug in that allows me to access a Firebird database from SQL yet, but haven't looked in quite a while either). Also, if this were client/server based would there be a field to distinguish which user made what change? For example, if my wife went in and marked a movie as a wish list, would it just be on a wish list specifically for her, or would there be one big wish list that served all people? If it is all one big one, then will I know who marked it as a wish?
  • I would like to know if there is any way to use this software for other things besides movies. Things such as Books/Games/Software (Wii, xBox360, PS2, Music,PC etc...) If this software could do that as well, then it would be invaluable to me. I have a huge collection of movies (imho around 400-600, at least too many to enter by hand) and roughly 50 Gb of music that I would like to track. I currently have a portable version of iTunes that I use to synch with 4 different iPods for my family. It would be nice to be able to use something like this to keep track of things like that as well (music). This can be a nightmare at times ???, so this would be my highest priority request.
  • Probably my second highest priority request would be to make a Windows Mobile version of this application. I would like to be able to add this to my Windows Mobile device and be able to take my library with me in the fact that I can pull up my wish list and see what I have marked (I always forget by the time I get to the store, sometimes I even forget what I already have and don't have). This would also help with Christmas and Birthday shopping for my family  :) since we all have very different tastes in just about everything.
I am a very technical person (although not as much of an eagle eye as rick.ca seems to be :o Wow is all I can say!) and would be more than happy and willing to help test these features out.
I work with programmers and developers all the time and Nostra seems to be one of the most open, humble, willing to listen, and polite out of all of them.
Keep up the great work, this seems to be something to really be proud of. I apologize if any of this information was covered elsewhere in the forums that I have not gotten to yet, I was just really excited about this software and wanted to throw my thoughts out there while they were fresh in my mind.

Offline nostra

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #147 on: December 29, 2008, 10:23:20 pm »
Quote
Portability. I know that this was brought up previously and you can run it portably, but it seems like a untouted feature that I think could possibly be greatly appreciated by many users. (I personally am trying to make all of my apps portable so that I can use them on any of the 7-10 machines that I use on a regular basis and not have to maintain seperate installs for each)

Sorry, but I do not understand what is your suggestion here? Do you want the portable mode to be default?

Quote
I like the whole Client/Server option, I think that this is a good goal and do not remember what version it was supposed to be in, but look forward to it. Can you tell any more about it? Is there going to be any security, what kind of optimization could be used, how can it be set up in this way, etc.? Also, would there be a way to convert the databse over to use SQL instead of Firebird? (I only ask because I am more familiar with that and have not found a free plug in that allows me to access a Firebird database from SQL yet, but haven't looked in quite a while either). Also, if this were client/server based would there be a field to distinguish which user made what change? For example, if my wife went in and marked a movie as a wish list, would it just be on a wish list specifically for her, or would there be one big wish list that served all people? If it is all one big one, then will I know who marked it as a wish?

You will need to install a server application on the computer where the database file is located. All client instances in the network will access this server to view/edit data. I plan to have this feature implemented in the final 0.9.9 release. Storing data pro user is not planned yet, so if someone mark a movie as wished you will just see it's wished, nothing more.

Firebird is a relational database that uses SQL, so if you know SQL you can connect to it using software that support Firebird (Firebird Maestro, EMS SQL Manager, and others) and manage data using SQL - no problem.

Quote
I would like to know if there is any way to use this software for other things besides movies. Things such as Books/Games/Software (Wii, xBox360, PS2, Music,PC etc...) If this software could do that as well, then it would be invaluable to me. I have a huge collection of movies (imho around 400-600, at least too many to enter by hand) and roughly 50 Gb of music that I would like to track. I currently have a portable version of iTunes that I use to synch with 4 different iPods for my family. It would be nice to be able to use something like this to keep track of things like that as well (music). This can be a nightmare at times Huh, so this would be my highest priority request.

Theoretically, if you rename the fields using custom translation and write some scripts for other data types you can store pretty everything in the database. I am not planning to make changes for other data types myself.

Quote
Probably my second highest priority request would be to make a Windows Mobile version of this application. I would like to be able to add this to my Windows Mobile device and be able to take my library with me in the fact that I can pull up my wish list and see what I have marked (I always forget by the time I get to the store, sometimes I even forget what I already have and don't have). This would also help with Christmas and Birthday shopping for my family  Smiley since we all have very different tastes in just about everything.

I would love to implement all features and software of the world, but unfortunately ;) my time is not infinite, so it is not possible. There are 2 possibilities for me to write a Windows Mobile version of PVD:
1. PC Version is full featured and I have nothing to do
2. Someone pays me for the work
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Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #148 on: December 30, 2008, 01:44:48 am »
Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts, js. Yes, you will find these things are discussed elsewhere in the forum, but they're not always easy to find.

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it seems like a untouted feature

Yes, it runs nicely from a memory stick. Just one of so many wonderful features that they all seem untouted. ;D

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Storing data per user is not planned yet

The ability to handle multiple users in one database seems like a good idea, but I wonder how practical it really is. In most situations, the multiple users are not going to be "equal partners" in sharing a database. There is going to be a primary user (one who created the database and is ultimately responsible for maintaining it) and secondary users. The secondary user want access to the primary user's database, in part, because they would rather not go to the trouble of maintaining their own. As such, their interest in recording personal information (i.e., wish list, seen date, comments, etc) is somewhat less. If this were not true—and the secondary user might also find they are interested in different movies, different information sources, different program configurations—then it becomes clear that user is much better off maintaining their own database. If the multiple user database approach works, except for personal fields being shared (e.g., Seen date), this can be dealt with by using adding custom fields (e.g., Seen by). The result might even be preferred in a family situation. Seen means somebody has seen it, Seen date is the date it was first seen, and those viewing it at a later date would just add their names to Seen by.

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I would like to know if there is any way to use this software for other things besides movies.

If you look at the software as a front end to a relational database relating people to their creations, with the ability to download and populate the database with information from websites, then it can be used for anything that fits that model. It would require a lot of work, however, to rename captions, add custom fields, design skins, and—most of all—write download scripts. While the core functions are the same, you would find requirements vary considerably according to the subject matter. The idea of making it do everything is clearly impractical. If one has a keen interest in one particular thing (e.g., video games) not already better served by other software (e.g., music), they may find adapting PVD to this purpose a fulfilling hobby.

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Probably my second highest priority request would be to make a Windows Mobile version of this application.

Unless you can afford to put nostra on your payroll, it seems you're not going to see this any time soon. ;) But don't despair—you should be able to export to HTML in some fashion that you'll find practical for mobile use. That could include most of the information for the entire database, as well as special purpose things like wish lists for use in the video store.

Quote
I am a very technical person (although not as much of an eagle eye as rick.ca seems to be. Wow is all I can say!)

And here I was trying so hard to be humble. :-[ Oh, well. That, and seeing the future, is nostra's job. ;)

PVD is not for everyone, but as a technical person, you'll appreciate it's power and flexibility.

Offline patch

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #149 on: December 30, 2008, 10:01:32 am »
  • I like the whole Client/Server option, I think that this is a good goal and do not remember what version it was supposed to be in, but look forward to it. Can you tell any more about it? Is there going to be any security, what kind of optimization could be used, how can it be set up in this way, etc.? Also, would there be a way to convert the databse over to use SQL instead of Firebird? (I only ask because I am more familiar with that and have not found a free plug in that allows me to access a Firebird database from SQL yet, but haven't looked in quite a while either). Also, if this were client/server based would there be a field to distinguish which user made what change? For example, if my wife went in and marked a movie as a wish list, would it just be on a wish list specifically for her, or would there be one big wish list that served all people? If it is all one big one, then will I know who marked it as a wish?
This functionality would be achievable by tagging movies, if you store them on a network drive. Then accessing the network drive from multiple accounts or users or portable installs.

If your collection is mainly stored on removable media then multi user preferences within a client server model is probably the only way to go but I suspect it would require a major program modification (all user state variables would need another dimension dependant current logged in user).

  • I would like to know if there is any way to use this software for other things besides movies. Things such as Books/Games/Software (Wii, xBox360, PS2, Music,PC etc...) If this software could do that as well, then it would be invaluable to me. I have a huge collection of movies (imho around 400-600, at least too many to enter by hand) and roughly 50 Gb of music that I would like to track. I currently have a portable version of iTunes that I use to synch with 4 different iPods for my family. It would be nice to be able to use something like this to keep track of things like that as well (music). This can be a nightmare at times ???, so this would be my highest priority request.
There are many specialised music library management programs. I would not use iTunes as it does a poor job of separating library management and user management functions.

I would suggest you try Media monkey http://www.mediamonkey.com/ or similar program. This software can scan multiple directories at startup, importing changes as required. If you store your music in a network drive then each user can run a different instance of media monkey enabling them to have their own rating, play lists, play history, but still play any music from the file server. Alternatively you could use the client server functionality offered by such programs.

BTW
I suspect other software offers the same functionality, I have given media monkey as an example instead of iTunes only because I have used those two programs.

  • Probably my second highest priority request would be to make a Windows Mobile version of this application. I would like to be able to add this to my Windows Mobile device and be able to take my library with me in the fact that I can pull up my wish list and see what I have marked (I always forget by the time I get to the store, sometimes I even forget what I already have and don't have). This would also help with Christmas and Birthday shopping for my family  :) since we all have very different tastes in just about everything.
mmm
How were you hoping this would fit in with the client server? I suppose you would like a client accessing the server over an internet connection. Sound as if it would take significant programmer and user time to achieve, limiting the potential return to nostra.

Alternatively
What about using VPN to access a computer running PVD on your home network from a portable device. Existing tools can then be used to enable remote desktop control, functionally achieving PVD remote access.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2008, 10:30:40 am by patch »

Offline woosha

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #150 on: January 12, 2009, 06:54:46 am »
Do you want PVD to search and download subtitles for you or just find existing ones on HDD and rename?

I would like PVD to find and download subtitles (srt) based on the existing movie files, similar to the way it gathers info from IMDB and Amazon.

Sorry about the delay (been busy).

Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #151 on: January 12, 2009, 07:33:35 am »
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I would like PVD to find and download subtitles (srt) based on the existing movie files...

The problem with this is the subtitle file has to be a correct match to the particular file you have, or it won't be synchronized. There can be hundreds of subtitle files for one movie. Picking the right one might be possible (e.g., using opensubtitles.org) if both you and the subtitle file uploader use the same file reference (e.g., a torrent name). Otherwise, it's difficult to see how an automated match could be made. I think the best you can do is to add Web searches that will manual searches a little more convenient.

Offline woosha

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #152 on: January 12, 2009, 07:52:53 am »
The problem with this is the subtitle file has to be a correct match to the particular file you have, or it won't be synchronized.

Yeah, that's pretty annoying. When I have out of synch subs I use Subtitle Workshop to adjust timings. Given a start and end point of dialog it can shift/compress/expand to match.

Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #153 on: January 12, 2009, 08:10:12 am »
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I use Subtitle Workshop to adjust timings...

I've tried that a few times, without much luck—probably because there were more things "wrong" with the subtitles than just timing. It is, of course, much easier just to download something that works. It's too bad there wasn't a more effective way to find a match.

Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #154 on: January 12, 2009, 08:54:17 am »
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It's too bad there wasn't a more effective way to find a match.

I'm slowly learning that whenever I have a thought like this, the answer is, "There is a better way." ::)

Try OSCAR. It finds subtitle matches based on the hash code of your movie file. I just tried it on a whole folder of movies, and it found subtitles for everything in seconds. I haven't actually tried any of them yet, but given the way it's making the matches, I don't see how it could go wrong. If it doesn't find an exact match, then there probably isn't one (on OpenSubtitles.org), and you would have to look for a close match manually—and should probably expect to have to use something like Subtitle Workshop to modify it.

Offline orescb

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #155 on: January 22, 2009, 12:58:55 pm »
First I want to thank the developer/s and contributors for their effort and this nice program.
I would like to add some requests that I did not find listed.
The first one is the possibility to have additional ratings, both personal and from the web (using the plug-ins). So far I have dealt with this lack by using custom fields, but it is clearly a bad way. I understand that now we can filter by custom fields in the beta version (sadly I couldn't get to load my database so I couldn't check out what else one can do with custom fields.I would like to know whether you can sort by custom fields, or maybe now you can match the formatting of other regular fields as ratings so you can make new nice looking personal ratings).
A second request is to ease the edition of the records. The way I think it could be improved is, first, by allowing fast edition of some fields by default without entering in edition mode as now happens with the ratings (I would like to input the whole number in the ratings, by the way, and not just to enter the stars). Secondly, it would be nice to have the possibility to setup shortcut keys to edit specific items of one record in the database. Again, this feature may already be implemented in the new beta  ???

Anyway, whether I am late for requests or not, thank you for all this. I strongly believe that these kind of behavior makes a better world... and in this one a better organized one, which is not little.  :)

Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #156 on: January 23, 2009, 12:03:00 am »
Welcome to the forum.

Quote
The first one is the possibility to have additional ratings...

Just to clarify...the ratings fields that are provided are imdbrating, orating and rating. Orating ("other" or "additional rating") can be used for any any rating source, and a caption for that source saved in oratingname (not by the user, but by a plugin or script). Rating is meant for user ratings, but could be used for anything else. In 0.9.9, you can sort, group and advance search using these fields. I think this is a sensible design for standard ratings.

To handle more ratings, custom fields would have to be added. Depending on the type of field used, it can be grouped and/or sorted. As far as I can tell, stars are not a "type" available to custom fields, nor is it a "format" that can be applied in a skin. Maybe this could change. As things are in 0.9.9, an additional rating field would best be handled as a select list, as this type can be sorted and grouped.

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allowing fast edition of some fields by default

I agree, but for which fields would be "safe" to do so? For custom fields, this would have to be configurable.

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setup shortcut keys to edit specific items of one record in the database

If I understand correctly, the shortcut would put just the selected (as indicated by cursor position) field into edit mode. I think this is a better solution than arbitrarily making some fields editable. I imagine this could be applied universally, and added to the context menu. In other words, you would be able to select anything, right-click and select "edit." One the other hand, for multi-item fields, the context menu currently applies to the specific item chosen rather than the entire field, so this might be difficult to implement. I hope nostra will consider it however—it would be a very nice feature to have.

Offline nostra

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #157 on: January 23, 2009, 01:10:04 am »
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As far as I can tell, stars are not a "type" available to custom fields, nor is it a "format" that can be applied in a skin.

There is a Rating type for custom fields in 0.9.9 actually....

Quote
If I understand correctly, the shortcut would put just the selected (as indicated by cursor position) field into edit mode. I think this is a better solution than arbitrarily making some fields editable. I imagine this could be applied universally, and added to the context menu. In other words, you would be able to select anything, right-click and select "edit." One the other hand, for multi-item fields, the context menu currently applies to the specific item chosen rather than the entire field, so this might be difficult to implement. I hope nostra will consider it however—it would be a very nice feature to have.

Hmm, what is a practical usage of this functionality? Is it really so inconvenient to switch in edit mode?
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Offline rick.ca

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #158 on: January 23, 2009, 01:52:35 am »
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There is a Rating type for custom fields in 0.9.9 actually...

Oops. Didn't notice that. That'll go nicely with my Review (memo) field.

Quote
Is it really so inconvenient to switch in edit mode?

Editing "in-place" is always much more convenient for changing just one field. Particularly so when edit mode expands all collapsible fields—requiring scrolling/searching to find the subject field. Furthermore, after a record is initially created, this one-field-at-a-time editing is much more common than situations where several/many fields are edited at the same time.

Here's an additional thought: If such a feature put the field in edit mode and selected all the contents, it would make it very easy to replace the contents of any field with the contents of the clipboard.

Offline nostra

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Re: Vote: Features for 0.9.9
« Reply #159 on: January 24, 2009, 01:46:49 am »
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Editing "in-place" is always much more convenient for changing just one field. Particularly so when edit mode expands all collapsible fields—requiring scrolling/searching to find the subject field. Furthermore, after a record is initially created, this one-field-at-a-time editing is much more common than situations where several/many fields are edited at the same time.

Here's an additional thought: If such a feature put the field in edit mode and selected all the contents, it would make it very easy to replace the contents of any field with the contents of the clipboard.

OK, I'll consider adding an "edit in place" function in future.
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