On-screen shortcuts to favorite displays

I have previously argued that the hamburger menu is a clumsy navigation device and had poor discoverability. Yes, it is popular on web sites today, but it is really old-fashioned. It takes the File, Edit, View, Help menus from the early 90s and combines them into one. Doesn’t live up to the elegance of Roon’s Information Architecture, with the central link navigation in the metadata.

With every new release, the problem gets worse. 1.3 offers new cool stuff, hidden behind the hamburger menu.

I had suggested icons along the top, but @Danny convinced me that this wouldn’t work, there are too many of them. (I tried, he is right.) And it isn’t just the hamburger items I would like immediate access to, bookmarks as well.

Rock and a hard place,

But I noticed that several modern cars have a good generalization of the old radio station shortcut buttons: you can store anything in a shortcut button, a radio station or a phone number or a navigation address or a setting (massage chair!).

Seems we could emulate that: let me store a view, of any kind, in a row of buttons along the top edge, between the hamburger/back/forth group and the bookmark/filter/search group. And let me provide a text or an icon to label it.

Right now I have a car that allows these shortcuts to become a scrollable list; this adds flexibility but it is gilding the lily. My previous car had a fixed set, limited but arguably more practical.

Generalizing the views completely may be over-complicated and unnecessary: do I really need a direct-access button for PEQ for each zone? We can simplify the whole concept by allowing only bookmarks (and then control what can be handled by defining bookmarking capability). A totally simple design would be to fit in as many bookmark labels as will fit on each device – we already have reordering for prioritazion. With this approach, it becomes very simple.

Adding icon support adds a bit complexity. But again, my previous car had unlabeled buttons – there were only 8 of them, how hard is it to remember?


+1 again, @AndersVinberg. I like your UI thinking :slight_smile:

Not that I really suggest blank buttons, of course.
Text labels is minimum.
Maybe add font control.
Roon can provide a library of reasonable icons, next.
And finally, user graphics. Maybe.

And Roon guys, don’t think I didn’t notice bookmark reordering.
Great stuff.

Personally, I use Bookmarks to duplicate the most used items in the Hamburger menu

One issue with the use of the proposed Bookmark icons [akin to Bookmark icons in Chrome’s Bookmark Bar would be trying to adding it while keeping the UI consistent…e.g as below when the Focus items are displayed…where do the icons fit then??

I fully agree with this shortcut system.
It would fits also with feature requests I did some time ago.

  1. Create shortcuts or Keyboard combinations (es. CTRL+Shift+…) for frequent actions (es add to library, merge albums, etc)
  2. List recent actions (1 to 5 for example) under button or after right click

Interesting stuff. When you say “let me store a view, of any kind, …”, what exactly does it mean? Let me take an example; Since I’m now enjoying MQA using an Explorer2 I lost control over volume within the app. Exclusive mode, fixed volume. So I need to switch to the Harmony app and tell it to change the volume on the amp, and then switch back (of course there are other ways to do it, like getting up from the chair and go to the amp. But this is what I usually do). I’m certainly no expert in this, but I guess this could be emulated using OS features. Something like this (for Android) I guess:

This might be the most obvious example where app-to-app integration would help. But I’m not sure where this would lead us, are equivalent inter-app APIs available on all supported OSs?

I’m not sure I follow the specific suggestion of the OP fully (I read it very quickly) but I strongly believe Roon has reached the point where some level of user customisation would be really beneficial.

Personally, I’d like a couple of ‘hot menus’ that are permanent and can be user defined. I’d also like a bit of customisation ability to album view (display the info most important to you), and maybe a couple of hot buttons at album and track level, and now playing.

Roon now offers a wealth of information and tools that I’m sure we all use slightly differently. Someone that loves DR wants to access the info directly or see it straight away. Someone that uses DSP a lot wants access to presets. Others may use lyrics, tagging, etc etc.

I use several items of the main menu much more frequently, and others never. I want to reorder them. It’s even worse on the iPhone.

On the iPhone I’d be happy with ‘recent’ including recently added and recently played. And albums with a favourites selector. Those two menus would cover nearly all my general use cases on the iPhone other than zone selection, volume and play/pause. But we’ll all be different, so some customisation would be lovely. I’ve no idea why tagging menu is at the top of the iPhone in the shortlist for example. I rarely use tags so it’s not applicable to me, whereas ‘albums’ is hidden. Someone’s made a decision about that based on their use case, or an ‘average’ use case I guess - but it doesn’t fit my workflow.

Let us change it how we want, but protect the interface from becoming ugly and unintuitive. I believe both are possible.

This should really be a feature request by the way.

I think there is room with minimal realignment.
Here is a horizontal layout, and a vertical layout where the set of bookmark buttons gets truncated because there isn’t room.
I have used graphical icons for my own Home layout, and my Favorite icons; plus some named ones; plus a few numbered ones like on the radio station buttons in a car.
(@Danny since we have discussed this before)

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I think as a proof of concept, the idea’s sound.