Roon’s handling of 1.6 Feedback

(Ged) #56

Using that single use software to castigate roon is a bit odd don’t you think? Looks great as it is but i’m lost in the comparison.

(Mike O'Neill) #57

Then you should be committed to the ongoing success of Roon by constructive comments, not sniping !!

(Mike O'Neill) #58

I keep JRiver alive as well for other reasons but I now use Roon 98%

(Edward) #59

I contribute my suggestions, well I used too. However, Roon sees fit to ignore all, as they have their own agenda and ‘Road-Map’. Simple things like being able to adjust the font size so I don’t have to put on my glasses every time I use the product for example. Surely I’m not the only one with bad eyes…

But by ‘constructive comments’ I assume you mean I should praise Roon and become a groupie like so many others.

Long story short, Roon does not want constructive suggestions…from anyone. Yes if the ‘right’ person suggested it then, it would have been considered. Meaning yes I can adjust the theme to be high-contrast to help a single user see [who needed it] but no I will ignore the request to change font size as its a horrible idea. Oh even though 99% of the products used by computers allow font/screen adjustments.

I gave Roon my money, thats what they really want. I give programmers and music lovers my ideas, because thats what they want, and I give them my donation for their work.

(Mike O'Neill) #60

Sounds like you’re sufficiently disillusioned to write off your $500 and seek pastures green

I did a one year extended trial and debated renewing but I did , I don’t say I wholly agree with the roadmap, as a Classical listener i get the short end but there’s enough good to outweigh the bad

Hence why i keep JRiver alive

Time for bed said Zeberdee

Good night

(Allan) #61

Well, I’m breaking my own promise, at least to myself, to not comment further until the new version comes out. But I would like to note, I hope constructively, that Mike and Edward have both made valid points, but I think they are talking past each other.

That said, to respond to Mike:

(1) No one has made stronger positive comments than me, a point I made in my last very long reply in this thread. I was the OP and creator of the thread on “Why Roon is Fabulous, with or without Tidal.” So I have made many positive comments, and understand the great benefits of Roon. I especially like the artist bios and info on albums. I also tag my own music within J River but first consult Roon to see where they put music in terms of genres.

(2) I am also a lifetime subscriber. I put my own dollars behind Roon. What prompted me to do so, which may surprise those who read only my most recent comments, is version 1.6. I was previously concerned that Roon may not survive if Tidal goes under, since so many subscribers have said that without Tidal, they would cancel Roon. The addition of Qobuz proves a backup and reassured me that Roon would survive, with or without Tidal.

(3). I also greatly appreciate two additions to the recent design, and said so in earlier comments. I like the bar of icons in the Now Playing window that facilitate quick access to the artist bio and album info, since that is what I use Roon for constantly. It is important to note that the bar needs to be moved considerably down the page, to allow more room above the bar for both bios and artist info, but also for the photos. The crop of those photos will be less severe if the bar is moved down – a point that Brian has acknowledged and it appears they are doing just that. It will then also allow for a large album cover as an additional option. (I hope the smaller album thumbnail is then eliminated, as it just takes up room that is needed to move the bar of icons down the page, and thereby maximize room above the bar. The thumbnail is also unnecessary if album covers are restored.). I also like the new automatic lyrics, but is unfortunate that they only work less than 1/4 of time based on my own rough estimate.

It was based on those improvements, as well as Qobuz, that prompted to me to covert to a lifetime membership about two weeks ago.

(4). Critical comment can also improve the product. As the history of this thread, as well as the comments in other thread demonstrate, the management did not even know they had a serious bug in the software, and discovered it only because I persistently posted, over and over, for two weeks, offering examples of what is wrong with the presentation of photos. What we were all seeing can only be described as ugly.

As a result of my critical comments, the management acknowledged the bug, and said it would be corrected. So that is a case where, to be blunt, in-your-face criticism of the product resulted in a clear improvement.

So, in point of fact, critical comments, and in this case, scathingly critical comments, DO result in POSITIVE improvement.

But it should not have required in-your-face comments. Edward is correct. The management of Roon appear to cherry pick the comments that they like and ignore those that they do not.

Edit: They have responded positively to comments from many of us on a number of points. Brian responded quickly and positively to my posts about how the lyrics function works.

However, in the most recent example what did it take for them to finally admit they had a serious bug? It took repeated posts from me on the “butchered” and “sledge hammer” ugly crops, with text cutting across faces. It took nearly two weeks of blunt comments and criticism.

After two weeks of that, Brian finally acknowledged the existence of a bug. It should not have taken as many posts, using in-your-face language, to get Roon to acknowledge the problem.

If the management learn one lesson out of all of this, it is to be less defensive, and to read our posts more carefully.

We all want to improve the product. I am a lifetime subscriber and committed to the success of Roon.

I am now only hoping that the management will be less defensive, and look at the examples I posted in the other thread. And insure that those results will not appear in the next version.

For all we know, those ugly examples might be caused by the bug, and fixed when the bug is taken care of. There is no way to know, because Brian refused to answer that simple question.

Final comment for now. It is to the credit of Roon and the moderators that this thread exists. Freedom of speech exists in this forum, and none of my critical comments have ever been removed or censored. (Except for one comment that was intended to be a humorous aside, but could have been misinterpreted so it was removed, which was a good call by the moderator.)

I appreciate the existence of the forum, and the hard work by the moderators to facilitate these discussions.

(Edward) #62

Wow an absolutely fantastic and well thought out post Allan!

Defensive is correct.

I’m in the same boat, I submitted a problem with the TIDAL 'Artist" images not showing up. First I was told its “Allmuisic’s” fault and to let them know.

I have noted your findings with the team but the best way forward here would be to let Allmusic know regarding this request by using the “Submit Corrections” button on this page: ( 5).


Then after many back and forth posts, especially about the ‘its someone elses fault go tell them’ attitude, I finally was able to supply more screenshots to acknowledge a problem. But only after one of their own people described the functionality of their own product incorrectly.

From Mike: Roon Labs Product

Our metadata comes from a number of different sources, and on balance should have richer and more complete data than you’d find in TIDAL directly.
We don’t simply pass TIDAL artist images through to Roon, for a number of reasons.
Point being, you shouldn’t assume that because TIDAL has an image for a given artist, Roon always will too. There’s a lot more complexity in how we deliver metadata than that.

Which contradicts the Developer

From Joel: Roon Labs Developer

The TIDAL artists screen is essentially a view on your TIDAL favourites (i.e. it pulls metadata directly from TIDAL), so that’s almost certainly why an artist image you have added in Roon isn’t showing up there. I’m not sure if anything is editable from that screen, and if it is, it will only be for artists on albums that you actually have in your library (TIDAL or other).

The implementation of the TIDAL menu screens was designed to be a pretty transparent view into your TIDAL account and the curated lists that TIDAL offers

The admission of a bug
From Joel: Roon Labs Developer

Perhaps, perhaps not. I would now hazard a guess that we are showing non-TIDAL artwork for Incognito in your TIDAL artists list, but there may be a bug which stopped your Count Basic image addition showing up there.

I’m going to hand this back to @support.

From Mike: Roon Labs Product

You are correct that there may be a bug here.

The thread can be seen here…seems as if its been swept under the rug.

(Kevin Roxby) #63

Utter nonsense. 1.6 works well for me, and, I suspect, 1,000s of other subscribers. Considering the coding complexity, I’m pleased it works so well. Most enjoyable.

(Simon Ward) #64

How about doing a bit less bickering, chest beating and self-aggrandising, and a bit more listening to music (the whole point of this software).

(Edward) #67

Yes you have a point. I ought to be happy it plays music that I can enjoy

Currently I pick an Artist in TIDAL and blank the screen as to not look at the Grey Hash square.

Think happy thoughts.

(Allan) #68

No one is forcing you to read this thread or these comments. I responded because those of us who criticize the management of Roon are attacked for doing so. Many of us are lifetime subscribers. Are you? Many of us have posted detailed comments strongly supporting and defending Roon. Have you?

The perspective that the critics of Roon should just go away and listen to music is both simplistic and self destructive.

The software you use to enjoy music has been immeasurably improved by the critical comments offered by many folks on this forum. And some of those comments, such as the thread on the disastrous UI of version 1.6., have been direct and blunt. Those comments would be less direct and blunt if the management of Roon was more receptive to critical comments. That has not always been the case in the past.

Bottom line, the critical comments from the subscribers will also result in direct improvement of the product.

So that we can all better enjoy and utilize Roon to listen to music.

(Edward) #69

Not to mention, this is a product you paid for…

You are owed a fully functional working product as described in the product’s literature.

(Simon Ward) #70

Yep, it is fully functional and plays music perfectly in my house…I’ll live with a couple of minor aesthetic quirks whilst enjoying the tune.

(Allan) #71

Minor is in the eye of the beholder. Judging by the sheer quantity of the number of comments criticizing version 1.6, hundreds of subscribers don’t share your view that looking at artist photos with heads cut off is a minor aesthetic quirk. Or black screens when there is no photo, no bio, no album information, and of course, no image of the album cover.

Those problems will likely be fixed – thanks to the hundreds of comments that have been posted. You will benefit from the result. It would be easier to get problems fixed if management was more receptive to the comments, however. It would then require a single post, and not two weeks of blunt posts describing an obvious and serious problem.

For what it’s worth, as I noted in my first post of the day, I am a lifetime subscriber and a strong defender of Roon.

(Scott Winders) #79

I don’t think anyone minds valid criticism. What I mind is people being jerks while doing it.

(Fernando Pereira) #80

As Dave Wyner famously said a long, long time ago, “We Make Shitty Software … With Bugs.” All of us who code or manage software projects, all the time. Even when we try our best.

Back when I started in this both blessed and cursed craft, in college a long time ago in a far away place, I was helping civil engineers debug their failing structural engineering programs. Instinctively, what I would always tell them – to their eye rolling for that display of “arrogance” from a young whippersnapper who could not define elastic vs plastic deformation – was something like what @brian asked you: show me specific examples – input/output, code lines – not theories of what is going on that is unexpected. To their surprise and eventual gratitude, and thanks to many cups of espresso, a dialogue about specific cases was the way that their sometimes subtle bugs were found (in the process, I saw some of the most horrific code I’ve ever encountered).

All to say that, your specific examples are good fodder for the Roon developers, but your pontification about design and process totally unhelpful. I’ve been in the business for over 40 years, and I’ve never seen that attitude bear any fruit, especially because everybody who is involved in software development makes mistakes and creates bugs. Casting first stones and all that.

Roon 1.6 Feedback Thread
(Frank Daman) #81

Not jumping in to defend another contributor or to heap criticism on Roon staff, but sometimes the easiest way to illustrate a lack of feature or unexpected feature behaviour is by comparison with known functionalities/features in other software.

Not with the intent of stating “this is a better way of going about to solve the issue” but as a way of stating: “this is how I wish the software would behave and maybe you don’t have to rethink your whole approach, you could just implement this or that tried and tested solution alongside your own stuff.”

The Roon staff are quite willing to enter into dialog with the users. They also suffer - quite understandably - from tunnel vision. Creators of all sorts often suffer from this. This is why writers use editors: to find the flaws they can’t find by themselves anymore. Musicians and composers do the same: they call upon producers and arrangers.

In software development such a form of assistance doesn’t exist. Alpha and Beta testers don’t have the same influence as editors have. Alpha and beta tests are usually too focused on code functionality and focus very little on user satisfaction.

The times I have beta tested commercial software, the only review feedback that was asked for was performance feedback, not useability feedback. The useability feedback I did give was initially ignored. A few updates later I started to see some of my suggestions appear in the software. Funny and disheartening at the same time.

(Danny Dulai) #82

Then your experience with running alpha teams has been pretty bad.

We’ve totally rearranged the software multiple times due to alpha feedback. I think 1.4 totally scratched a major redesign of something called “collections” due to the alpha team. That was painful.

(Allan) #83

You clearly read the prior posts, so you know you quoted me out of context. I laid out the chronology of these events very clearly. My posts may have been long, but they were detailed and quite clear. After Brian asked for the examples, he said that they were a result of a bug. I was gratified and delighted to hear that, because it meant that the results I was posting would presumably be corrected. I said just that.

That was until Brian said this:

That directly contradicted his statement that the results that several of us posted were a result of a bug, because for over a week prior that, a number examples were posted of text cutting directly across artist faces, and not in an artistic way. So when Brian said that it was a prior practice, I asked if the specific examples we posted were a result of the bug, or a deliberate design choice. Brian flatly refused to answer the question in a condescending response.

My own posts immediately after that could have been more diplomatically drafted, and I’d be the first to admit that there was fault on all sides.

However, when you and other software developers continue to say that the users of the software are not entitled to post our opinions on the aesthetics of the design, that is just plain silly.

Look back at the examples I posted of Stan Getz and Wayne Shorter. Are you actually prepare to defend those as aesthetically pleasing or correct? They flunk the laugh test when it comes to aesthetics.

I therefore have to assume that they are a result of the bug, because they are so ugly. They must be unintentional. But for whatever reason, the Roon management did not respond to that question then and never have subsequently done so for that matter.

I’d love to know how many software coders also earned masters degrees in design. You guys love to say that only software coders can pontificate on design, but knowing how to code does not give you any more expertise in design than any of the rest of us.

I tried. As an advanced photographer, it was pretty clear that about half of the problems in the Now Viewing page were due to the severe crop. I explained that when you crop a square image to fit only the upper half of a long rectangle, it is a severe crop by any definition, with the predictable results that we were still seeing. As for the assertion by management that new photos were being rolled out and that coupled with facial recognition, it would solve the problem, well, that is still not happening. I could post examples I found only today of headless torsos, but what is the point in doing so?

That was not the case two weeks ago. That gradually occurred when Roon did not respond to posts for nearly two weeks, and then refused to respond to simple questions. I can only say that your choice of words to criticize some of us would equally apply to some in senior management of Roon. But that is your choice of words, not mine.

(John B) #84

@allan2 in fairness you seem to realise that you have gone too far with some of your language as time passed.

I don’t know what you are looking for at this stage however and I think we all understand your position.

We’ll have a new update in a week or two and I’m fully sure Roon will have responded to a lot of the feedback received. I’m also fully sure that there will be some missed bugs and there will be some design choices that I think could have been done better.

If it really annoys me I’ll report it, if not I’ll get used to it much quicker than I thought would.

It is perhaps best to keep our powders dry until Roon have attempted to solve the issues?