Rhythmbox – Usability Lessons Learned

Currently trying to delete about 50 playlists on Rhythmbox. (Rhythmbox doesn’t yet have podcast-friendly features like sorting by date, so I end up creating a daily playlist via a bashpodder hack, leading to numerous playlists).

The program’s nice overall, but deleting the playlists is a bit slow. I’m manually navigating to each item, right-clicking to open the menu, clicking delete, and confirming. Lessons learned here:

  • Keyboard shortcuts are good. Like “Del” for delete.
  • Multiple selection is good. Even for things you didn’t think anyone would need to do in bulk. You can’t anticipate everything users will do, so as a general rule of thumb … assume that if a user can do something to one thing, they will probably want to do it to many things.
  • Expose the configuration files so I can work out where all this stuff is stored, and manually delete them on the command line. I wish more Linux GUI apps would make it more obvious how the config maps to the filesystem – knowing that should be one of the main benefits of working in Linux.

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