[MPlayer-users] two cents: why dvdnav is needed (why mplayer will die from this)

Daniel Hauck daniel at yacg.com
Mon Mar 3 10:08:18 CET 2003

I've been watching this list for a bit and I am observing why mplayer
will die the way so many other decent projects do.

Quite a few years ago, before Windows was the only way to do things and
all the best games were in DOS, I knew this one guy who once told me,
"...I'll never use Windows!  It's just a fancy menu system and who needs
that?"  DOS is dead along with just about every program which was
exclusive to it.

I posed a question about enhancing the abilities of the "gmplayer" and I
received similar responses the gentleman I reference below.  Such
responses as "code it yourself" "it's too trivial" and "it's not needed

It's good that Linus Torvalds could see that while there are many
"trivial" inclusions into the Linux kernel, they are present to fill
various needs and uses.  Some of these things were even removed
eventually but were at least given a chance to grow.  So now Linux
supports a huge range of things such as obscure file-systems and
executable binary formats that allow Linux to be useful not only in a
majority sense, but in a minority one as well.

"Code it yourself" isn't always an option.  That's like telling someone
to build his own car if he needs something changed in the car he drives
now.  Its not much of a stretch of the imagination to see why DVDNAV is
needed.  Sometimes it's the only way to make some things happen. 
Another person mentioned a desire to have mplayer blank the screen and
pause for a key-press between clips.  (Clearly he wants to use it as
part of a presentation of some sort) While I think this is a very
trivial addition, I can see where it might be a good thing to have even
though I, personally, do not foresee myself ever using such an option. 
Asking that "gmplayer" remove some of its annoyances such as the huge
logo display, remembering its location on the screen, remembering the
magnification setting and forgetting its play-list and a host of other
functions that make it more useful in a GUI oriented file-browsing sense
doesn't seem unreasonable or non-productive. (Looping is a nice option

We're not all Henry Ford.  We want cars of many colors and styles --
that's why there are so many of them.  The "engineer-friendly" style
isn't the only and certainly isn't the best approach to a project that
virtually demands that a graphics-delivering application utilize common
graphical interface standards and uses.  The "engineer-elite" mentality
here doesn't serve to help this project grow, but hinders it by limiting
the user and interest base.  

While the true owners of the project are the actual coders and the users
are mere leeches, the input of users should be respected without grudge
or malice as soon enough another project (probably commercial) will
answer the call of the end user thereby proving that open source doesn't
serve the community at large [read "main-stream"] and remains the tool
of the "elite hobbyist" and never taken seriously.

On Sun, 2003-03-02 at 22:09, D Richard Felker III wrote:
> [Automatic answer: RTFM (read DOCS, FAQ), also read DOCS/bugreports.html]
> On Sun, Mar 02, 2003 at 06:40:30PM -0800, La Temperanza wrote:
> > [Automatic answer: RTFM (read DOCS, FAQ), also read DOCS/bugreports.html]
> > I have a bunch of Excel Saga anime DVDs. The Japanese cultural 
> > references in this series are even more obscure then in most anime, and 
> > the publisher has thoughtfully provided a feature called "AD Vid-Notes" 
> > which pop up on the screen and explain them. Unfortunately, they are 
> > turned off by default, and thus without dvdnav I would be unable to use 
> > them.
> > 
> > I'm sure there are many other cases where the options menu of a DVD 
> > contains more then just the basics. Parental controls come to mind. And 
> > what about extras which are not in MPEG form, like image galleries?
> > 
> > If you're that dead-set against dvdnav, you can implement some arcane 
> > system of accessing these kinds of things via the command line and I'll 
> > be happy too. :p
> We're not dead-set against dvd navigation support. However, libdvdnav
> is a really bad library and is not friendly to mplayer's way of doing
> things. So if you want dvd nav support, code it yourself or find
> someone willing to do it. But the current developers are not
> interested in spending their time on this since they don't care for
> silly menus.
> Rich
> _______________________________________________
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Daniel Hauck <daniel at yacg.com>

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