[mythtv] MythTV Usability Report

Brad DerManouelian myth at dermanouelian.com
Mon Jan 9 02:03:11 UTC 2006

I feel the ease of modifying xml files and database entries to  
accommodate your needs is the beauty of mythtv and whomever has the  
initiative enough to download and install mythTV on a linux box (and  
get it to work with their tuner, download guide data, etc.) should  
also take the time to learn enough about it to set it up for people  
who don't need to get that involved. MythTV isn't an out of the box,  
plug and play solution. If it were, it would merely have the  
functionality of a replayTV box.

I set up my remote with the appropriate key bindings to do everything  
that needs to be done by an average user. Now my 8 year old can watch  
Live TV, recorded programs, videos and DVDs. She still has a problem  
with the MythMusic interface, so she doesn't use that. But my 14 year  
old can do all that plus schedule recordings.

For their sake, I modified the menus to put Watch Recordings on the  
first screen, removed the Phone menu option since we don't use it,  
changed Optical Discs to Play DVD/CD and I can't even remember what  
it used to say to get to the scheduler, but I renamed that to say  
"Pick Recordings". I wouldn't suggest these changes become default  
because they aren't accurate, but *I* know what's in the menus so  
it's ok.

And for those that don't want to RTFM, there's always Tivo. ;) Oh.. I  
even had to RTFM to get wireless working on that thing. <grumble>  
Stupid software update via phone line before it would recognize the  
adaptor. So glad I don't have it any more. </grumble>

On Jan 8, 2006, at 8:20 PM, Myles Eftos wrote:

>> G3 - That's the nature of PVRs.  try using the EPG or browse mode.
>> G5 - Because it's also known as the conflict resolution screen
>> G6 - RTFM?
>> G7 - Go to the upcoming recording screen, the watch recordings  
>> screen or
>> hell any screen involving recordings.
>> EPG1 - Hit the "show guide" button
> I think the point that Jono is making is that for interface issues
> like this you shouldn't have to RTFM. My girlfriend isn't going to
> jump on Google and try to find the legend for key bindings. He makes
> some valid points here and isn't looking for the solution himself - he
> is looking for the solution for ALL users.
> You can, to a degree get away with web-only documentation for software
> packages that are going to be used exclusively by computer people
> (i.e. someone with the knowledge to install the package in the first
> place), but MythTV is now getting to the point where many non-computer
> users are using it. Usability and/or thorough online help is extremely
> important in this instance.
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