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Old 10th February 2012
SergeNL SergeNL is offline
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Default What Skin do we need??

I wrote: BSP is still a great player, but the available skins are not attractive or user-friendly at all..

BSPeter must have had quite a laugh, when he wrote back:

You speak of "The Available Skins", but are you sure you've seen them all?
You can find a few skins here:
But perhaps also look here, here, here, and here.

Grinn.. Peter is absolutely right of course.. There are loads of skins out there, and quite a few of them are truly amazing. Real beauties of designs. Thanks for the links. :-)
Tip: on you can sort by rating, making it more easy..

Now, I did check some 150 skins already last year on, and looked at some again now, and checked the 4 extra links Peter gave…

Many are quite dull, looking like imitations of real hardware DVD-players. It must have been great fun to design them, but that is not enough.. Others are really creative, a “lust for the eye”, but not always very functional. But some are amazing professional designs, I could not dream of to make such myself. I am not much of a graphical designer..

But they all lack something! Functionality and/or recognisability! They are not so user friendly as they seem, and lack an ease of use.
Some are too simple. Simplicity can be a beauty, but leaves the user in the dark, when he wants to find some useful tools like Zoom, Jump, Color, etc.
Others display all options, creating a forest of buttons, where only dedicated users will find their way, but common users will have to search all the time for the right button. It becomes harder when icons are not recognised. And the grouping of buttons is not always too logical or intuitively done.

What I want is not so much a fancy design, but a player that is very recognisable for common users, with easy access for special functions that are very useful. It is an advantage, if you can see in a split second where to look for what! That is what makes a player easy and functional.
Compare it with VLC or WMP.. They are good, but you always have to find something in a menu, searching every time how to do it. BSPlayer has the advantage of a split window here, so it can be done better.

Currently I am working on a skin (upcoming: Kiss version 3.0), that may not be such a fancy design, but is very practical and recognisable. It’s better organised. I separated sections in a clear way. Perhaps others with more graphical skills can improve the idea, but I would want to see 7 clearly separated sections:

1. Loaded File.
*FileName *Length *FileInfo *ButtonInfo *TrackBar

2. Open files.
Buttons for: *OpenFile *Playlist *PlaylistBack *PlaylistForward *Media Library.

3. Play.
Buttons for: *Play *Stop *Pause *Repeat *FastForward *FastBack *IncreaseSpeed *DecreaseSpeed *JumpForeward10sec *JumpBackward10sec.

4. Video.
Buttons for: *Zoom *Ratio (change only) *Color *FullScreen *VideoOnTop *DesktopMode.

5. Audio.
Buttons for: *Volume *Mute *Equaliser *CycleAudioStreams.

6. Subtitles.
Buttons for: *OnOff *Up *Down *MoveForward *MoveBack *CycleSubtitles.

7. Common.
Buttons for: *About *Settings, and perhaps *Skins and *TipsForUsers giving popup advices during mouse-over.

(8. DVD)
I left this category out, because there are issues, I could not solve..

Alternative: A simple skin with the most common options, and with 6 Category-buttons, that all open an Extended area with all options above.

I think something must be done to improve skins in this way. I noticed there are always quite a few viewers on this Skin-forum, but hardly anyone posts anything. And I haven’t seen many new skins lately. So people really are curious, but not much is happening.
So something is wrong. I think skinning needs a new direction. And Tizio’s Skinmaker needs an upgrade or development. His DVD-buttons often do nothing. And there may be hidden Action numbers, or BSP doesn’t support skinning.. (grinn.. I found “Radio” being action number 6503)

I hope to upload Kiss 3.0 in 1-3 weeks, just as an example of how it can be done better. And causing expectations I probable get a lot of Boo, when I do. :-) That’s life.. It sucks as much as it is fun.. :-)

Peter, thanks and good luck. It needs a boost here.. Hopefully I’ll contribute to that.

Last edited by SergeNL; 10th February 2012 at 04:02 PM.
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