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A Linux blog to share any hints, tips, ebuilds, and insight I have picked up along the way. My interests mainly lie in security, photography, the web, and multimedia.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Miro 2.0... the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

First lets start with the good news. The gui is much more responsive. Interacting with the sidebar is a smoother experience. With previous releases it was possible to lock up the entire application for seconds at a time when selecting a new channel or trying to play a video. All of that has been fixed. Switching channels and videos is now seamless and instantaneous. Not only has the underlying code obviously been reworked but the look and feel has been overhauled too. It fits in with my GNOME desktop better than before now that Miro seems to use more GTK elements. Another change in the look and functionality in Miro is the playback mode. When viewing a video the sidebar is no longer visible. This is a a good improvement because it was useless before when a video was playing because any interaction with the sidebar would stop the current playing video. If you detach the video window you can manipulate the sidebar and its contents. . Since Miro uses xulrunner to display the guide you can also use it to view other web pages like Hulu. Unfortunately I can't get this to work because Miro won't recognize my flash plugin for some reason. It's possible it has something to do with my setup but I haven't looked too hard into it yet. It would be better if they could integrate Hulu channels and video directly into Miro but there might be some technical or licensing issues with that.


Now let's take a look at some of the bad, or more accurately, the ugly. The previous version didn't use many native GTK widgets. The only native GTK looking part of the previous version was the media controls. Now it is one of the few parts that does not respect the native GTK theme. The controls now have an iTunes-ish look. The GTK theming definitely isn't perfect either. I use a dark theme and while most applications I use now work with a dark theme without a hitch the new Miro is problematic. The text details for videos is the same color as the background and isn't readable with my theme unless the selection is highlighted and even then the text has a very low contrast with the background.


Overall I like the new Miro. I was getting tired of dealing with latency issues and the fact that it wouldn't work for me without an ancient version of openssl. That's all taken care of now and for the most part I like the new look, or at least the direction it is going in but it needs some polish. I am completely happy with the way it works though which even more important. For those of you who want to play around with new Miro here is an ebuild:


/usr/local/portage/media-tv/miro-2.0.ebuild

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2 Comments:

Blogger BobCFC said...

I asked somebody on the #miro irc channel and they said they had to disable flash on Linux because of a bug.

There is a debate between devs about the best way to solve it and should be fixed in an up-coming version.

Overall though it's much snappier and more stable I am happy

February 13, 2009 at 10:38 PM  
Blogger chris said...

I read that after I wrote the review. It's not that big of a deal though because I could always use the browser.

February 13, 2009 at 11:59 PM  

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write(msg)

A Linux blog to share any hints, tips, ebuilds, and insight I have picked up along the way. My interests mainly lie in security, photography, the web, and multimedia.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Miro 2.0... the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

First lets start with the good news. The gui is much more responsive. Interacting with the sidebar is a smoother experience. With previous releases it was possible to lock up the entire application for seconds at a time when selecting a new channel or trying to play a video. All of that has been fixed. Switching channels and videos is now seamless and instantaneous. Not only has the underlying code obviously been reworked but the look and feel has been overhauled too. It fits in with my GNOME desktop better than before now that Miro seems to use more GTK elements. Another change in the look and functionality in Miro is the playback mode. When viewing a video the sidebar is no longer visible. This is a a good improvement because it was useless before when a video was playing because any interaction with the sidebar would stop the current playing video. If you detach the video window you can manipulate the sidebar and its contents. . Since Miro uses xulrunner to display the guide you can also use it to view other web pages like Hulu. Unfortunately I can't get this to work because Miro won't recognize my flash plugin for some reason. It's possible it has something to do with my setup but I haven't looked too hard into it yet. It would be better if they could integrate Hulu channels and video directly into Miro but there might be some technical or licensing issues with that.


Now let's take a look at some of the bad, or more accurately, the ugly. The previous version didn't use many native GTK widgets. The only native GTK looking part of the previous version was the media controls. Now it is one of the few parts that does not respect the native GTK theme. The controls now have an iTunes-ish look. The GTK theming definitely isn't perfect either. I use a dark theme and while most applications I use now work with a dark theme without a hitch the new Miro is problematic. The text details for videos is the same color as the background and isn't readable with my theme unless the selection is highlighted and even then the text has a very low contrast with the background.


Overall I like the new Miro. I was getting tired of dealing with latency issues and the fact that it wouldn't work for me without an ancient version of openssl. That's all taken care of now and for the most part I like the new look, or at least the direction it is going in but it needs some polish. I am completely happy with the way it works though which even more important. For those of you who want to play around with new Miro here is an ebuild:


/usr/local/portage/media-tv/miro-2.0.ebuild

Labels: , , ,

2 Comments:

Blogger BobCFC said...

I asked somebody on the #miro irc channel and they said they had to disable flash on Linux because of a bug.

There is a debate between devs about the best way to solve it and should be fixed in an up-coming version.

Overall though it's much snappier and more stable I am happy

February 13, 2009 at 10:38 PM  
Blogger chris said...

I read that after I wrote the review. It's not that big of a deal though because I could always use the browser.

February 13, 2009 at 11:59 PM  

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