Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Help and support for HDHomeRun DVR and HDHomeRun software for Windows 10, Mac, Android, XBox, etc.
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Garyr
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by Garyr »

paulsaz wrote: Fri Nov 27, 2020 1:03 pm Ok, I'm going to beat the dead horse. A grid guide is what is keeping me from switching over to the DVR from Silicon Dust. I did just buy a Plex Pass for local OTA TV, just wish they would have DCM channels.
It seems to me that refining the existing UI with a fully functioning remote is priority one. And I want to thank and acknowledge GAB for all contributions he has done to move this remote control issue forward with SD.

And I have always said that just like PAULAZ says... SD needs to have a working grid guide in order to have a fully functioning replacement for all OTA programming. I know that SD likes their Slice guide but every time I demo this product the first complaint is that it dose not have a channel "guide".
Why cannot SD implement the grid guide and allow users to purchase the grid info from "Schedules Direct" like the 123EPG program does for WMC?

One final thought, in addition to my existing SD tuners I also have the Kickstarter ATSC 3.0 tuner and when broadcasters start to send programs in 4k or above (they just demoed a trial with sending 8k on a 6mhz ATSC 3.0 channel) the "guide" or "program list" should have a 4k type sticker or icon attached. That would allow us to demo the SD hardware and software interface showing off its capability to record or play higher resolution program... This could differentiate the product and make it a must buy for anyone with a 4k or 8k display. Bottom line is that if SD is able to fully get these items working they will "OWN" the OTA device market!!!

bruiserker
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by bruiserker »

It's funny how after all this time, WMC is still better than their app.

bruiserker
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by bruiserker »

NedS wrote: Thu Nov 26, 2020 8:34 pm A third party helper app already exists: https://www.howtogeek.com/247332/how-to ... ce-remote/
An application that relies on third-party hacks to supplement its shortcomings is poorly designed.

elabra
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by elabra »

gab wrote: Mon Dec 30, 2019 11:48 am
I am also wondering if picking the Xbox One as the client device was the right choice or if I should have gone for the Nvidia Shield instead. What is the preferred client device for HDHR DVR? And if I had picked the Nvidia Shield it looks like we could have used Android TV Live Channels directly connected to our Prime? I am seeking feedback on the combo Android TV Live Channels + Prime...
We have used NvIdia Shields with Primes and Connects for years without problems.

Wife uses Live Channels for watching live TV and is comfortable with it due to the traditional grid guide. I tend to use the HDHR app for Live TV and both work fine side by side.

Plex is our go to app for watching recorded programs and the HDHR DVR is our main engine for recordings - rock solid and has never missed any recordings. I also have PLEX DVR using 1 Connect device but is more of a test bed than day to day DVR engine but is available for us should there ever be a problem with the HDHR DVR.

NedS
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by NedS »

bruiserker wrote: Sun Jan 24, 2021 10:33 pm
NedS wrote: Thu Nov 26, 2020 8:34 pm A third party helper app already exists: https://www.howtogeek.com/247332/how-to ... ce-remote/
An application that relies on third-party hacks to supplement its shortcomings is poorly designed.
And yet that's the only practical option that Microsoft gives us. Even if we were to do exactly what that helper app does and slap our name on it, it would still be an external application using older methods of grabbing input, which Microsoft already discourages. They don't want apps using those buttons. Microsoft is pushing people very hard towards using the Xbox for those who want Windows-compatible software (well, UWP, at least) on a TV. These days they are not really putting any effort into the Windows-based HTPC, and I wouldn't expect that to change anytime soon.

gab
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by gab »

NedS wrote: Mon Jan 25, 2021 4:38 pm And yet that's the only practical option that Microsoft gives us.
Happy New Year NedS

We have established that this is not quite true on Windows 10. You could also write a Desktop Extension that calls RegisterRawInputDevices() and package it with your UWP app so that it forwards the messages to it.

All the instructions to do so, including code samples, can be found on this earlier post: viewtopic.php?p=366701#p366701

That said, I admit that pointing users to Advanced MCE Remote Remapper could be a short-term solution IF the HDHR DVR supported the WMC keyboards shortcuts we have been asking for so that remote buttons can be mapped to those keyboard shortcuts. There is currently nothing useful that the remote buttons can be mapped to, and it is not clear that you will ever deliver on that request.

The strange thing from my point of view is that implementing keyboard shortcuts is straightforward. So why not just go ahead and do it?

It sometimes feels like SD thinks that HDHR DVR is great and cannot be improved further. It is not. I feel that what Jared Newman wrote on TechHive THREE years ago in a review "Unfortunately, HDHomeRun DVR is still too rough to recommend, with an eyesore of an interface [...] and some confounding design choices." is very much still true today.

[removed by moderator - see forum rules]

Thank you for reading this rant. And understand that I am writing this because I want you to succeed. We have relied on a Prime for over seven years and it has been flawless. The Servio is also flawless. The only issue is the UI...

nickk
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by nickk »

gab wrote: Mon Jan 25, 2021 6:26 pmWe have established that this is not quite true on Windows 10. You could also write a Desktop Extension that calls RegisterRawInputDevices() and package it with your UWP app so that it forwards the messages to it.
We spoke with Microsoft about this option - they require reviewing the app before approving the certification exemption needed to allow a Desktop Extension in the app. We have it down as a feature request however ATSC 3.0 features are higher priority for my team right now.
gab wrote: Mon Jan 25, 2021 6:26 pmThat said, I admit that pointing users to Advanced MCE Remote Remapper could be a short-term solution IF the HDHR DVR supported the WMC keyboards shortcuts we have been asking for so that remote buttons can be mapped to those keyboard shortcuts. There is currently nothing useful that the remote buttons can be mapped to, and it is not clear that you will ever deliver on that request. The strange thing from my point of view is that implementing keyboard shortcuts is straightforward. So why not just go ahead and do it?
I agree with the idea of adding keyboard shortcuts for more operations. We have some ATSC 3.0 features that need to be completed and released before we can get this on the development schedule.
gab wrote: Mon Jan 25, 2021 6:26 pmIt sometimes feels like SD thinks that HDHR DVR is great and cannot be improved further.
We release UI features and improvements regularly. The DVR isn't a release-and-done project but a long term ongoing investment.

gab
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by gab »

nickk wrote: Mon Jan 25, 2021 7:59 pm We have some ATSC 3.0 features that need to be completed and released before we can get this on the development schedule.
[...]
We release UI features and improvements regularly. The DVR isn't a release-and-done project but a long term ongoing investment.
nickk

Thank you very much for those explanations. It is totally understandable that ATSC 3.0 has the highest priority.

I am looking forward to improvements in the UI once ATSC 3.0 support is complete.

NedS
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by NedS »

bruiserker wrote: Sun Jan 24, 2021 10:21 pm It's funny how after all this time, WMC is still better than their app.
Windows Media Center was a behemoth created by one of the largest and most powerful software companies on the planet, and designed to do far more than just handle live TV and recordings. It inspired XBMC many years ago, which lead to Plex, Media Portal, and various other major HTPC software options. It's a sort of "founding father" of HTPC software. If you think WMC still works better for you, not only will our feelings not be hurt, but we will be glad to help you set it up with EPG123.

When WMC was left to wither on the vine (along with various other motivations) we saw the need to create our own software from the ground up. We did this while still focusing on hardware and maintaining an open platform that allows people to use whatever software they want, and we did it at no extra cost to users.

I'll be honest with you, there are many things I would like to see added to our own app, many improvements that I would like to see happen. I am not going to tell you that our app is perfect, far from it. But I will tell you, it is our good faith effort to provide a universal out-of-box interface, so that anyone can set up HDHomeRun hardware, without having to configure their own server software or do something particularly complicated. We continue to work on it, and welcome constructive criticism and feedback.

Bobstr
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by Bobstr »

NedS wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 2:44 am
bruiserker wrote: Sun Jan 24, 2021 10:21 pm It's funny how after all this time, WMC is still better than their app.
Windows Media Center was a behemoth created by one of the largest and most powerful software companies on the planet, and designed to do far more than just handle live TV and recordings. It inspired XBMC many years ago, which lead to Plex, Media Portal, and various other major HTPC software options. It's a sort of "founding father" of HTPC software. If you think WMC still works better for you, not only will our feelings not be hurt, but we will be glad to help you set it up with EPG123.

When WMC was left to wither on the vine (along with various other motivations) we saw the need to create our own software from the ground up. We did this while still focusing on hardware and maintaining an open platform that allows people to use whatever software they want, and we did it at no extra cost to users.

I'll be honest with you, there are many things I would like to see added to our own app, many improvements that I would like to see happen. I am not going to tell you that our app is perfect, far from it. But I will tell you, it is our good faith effort to provide a universal out-of-box interface, so that anyone can set up HDHomeRun hardware, without having to configure their own server software or do something particularly complicated. We continue to work on it, and welcome constructive criticism and feedback.
Great summation Ned.
I was lucky enough to work for them when WMC was still beta and eventually even had a DirectTV and Dish USB connected hardware that allowed it to work as if it were a STB for those services (I had the DirecTV one - it was great, even did HD and recorded protected content, but only allowed it to be played on the device that recorded it). WMC did indeed do alot more than just play TV and record. And it did those things simply, easily and seamlessly. However, it never even started any transition towards streaming services or any of the other newer 'things'. It was left to die on the vine and that was that.

I prefer a single, simple solution to 'everything' (LOL) like WMC tried to be at the time. However, that's not a realistic expectation and hasn't been for a few years (I made the full transformation from WMC and went to SD's HDHomerun Prime and HDHomerun software and KODI for movies and older TV Show recordings). Someday someone will create a way to have a single program be an over-arching product that allows you to either directly handle everything (like WMC did) or allows easy access to the programs that you need to run all those things (kinda like the SD HDHomerun 'add on' to KODI, but more along the lines of being able to launch and run HDHomeRun with full functionality from KODI, then return back to KODI when you're done).

I like where SD is going with HDHomerun, it's just taking a long, long time to get there (I understand the economics of a smaller company vs. the economics of a giant like MS, so no anger about the timeline).

bruiserker
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by bruiserker »

Bobstr wrote: Wed Jan 27, 2021 4:30 pm
NedS wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 2:44 am
bruiserker wrote: Sun Jan 24, 2021 10:21 pm It's funny how after all this time, WMC is still better than their app.
Windows Media Center was a behemoth created by one of the largest and most powerful software companies on the planet, and designed to do far more than just handle live TV and recordings. It inspired XBMC many years ago, which lead to Plex, Media Portal, and various other major HTPC software options. It's a sort of "founding father" of HTPC software. If you think WMC still works better for you, not only will our feelings not be hurt, but we will be glad to help you set it up with EPG123.

When WMC was left to wither on the vine (along with various other motivations) we saw the need to create our own software from the ground up. We did this while still focusing on hardware and maintaining an open platform that allows people to use whatever software they want, and we did it at no extra cost to users.

I'll be honest with you, there are many things I would like to see added to our own app, many improvements that I would like to see happen. I am not going to tell you that our app is perfect, far from it. But I will tell you, it is our good faith effort to provide a universal out-of-box interface, so that anyone can set up HDHomeRun hardware, without having to configure their own server software or do something particularly complicated. We continue to work on it, and welcome constructive criticism and feedback.
Great summation Ned.
I was lucky enough to work for them when WMC was still beta and eventually even had a DirectTV and Dish USB connected hardware that allowed it to work as if it were a STB for those services (I had the DirecTV one - it was great, even did HD and recorded protected content, but only allowed it to be played on the device that recorded it). WMC did indeed do alot more than just play TV and record. And it did those things simply, easily and seamlessly. However, it never even started any transition towards streaming services or any of the other newer 'things'. It was left to die on the vine and that was that.

I prefer a single, simple solution to 'everything' (LOL) like WMC tried to be at the time. However, that's not a realistic expectation and hasn't been for a few years (I made the full transformation from WMC and went to SD's HDHomerun Prime and HDHomerun software and KODI for movies and older TV Show recordings). Someday someone will create a way to have a single program be an over-arching product that allows you to either directly handle everything (like WMC did) or allows easy access to the programs that you need to run all those things (kinda like the SD HDHomerun 'add on' to KODI, but more along the lines of being able to launch and run HDHomeRun with full functionality from KODI, then return back to KODI when you're done).

I like where SD is going with HDHomerun, it's just taking a long, long time to get there (I understand the economics of a smaller company vs. the economics of a giant like MS, so no anger about the timeline).
I can appreciate all of this, but I'm only referring to WMC's design for TV. It still has better remote support, show recording/retrieval options, and guide. After all of the years of development on your software, WMC is still the superior option. When you had to build your own software, why wouldn't you have started your design with the (mostly) universally implemented elements in place, then branch off into other options? It would seem the more prudent short and long term strategy with a small team. Rather than fixing holes in your design you'd be working on new features (it took you years to implement recording on one channel, something basic and intuitive to Kodi, Plex, WMC, Cox, Comcast, Fios...). All of those services have a design that most anyone can move between with hardly any learning curve, but people that buy your software have to "sell" your design to the family. That seems a counterintuitive strategy to me. The first time I saw my customers saying this I would have changed direction, knowing that I'm sacrificing potential revenue if I don't.

Wouldn't you have preferred people using your software rather than choosing Plex, Kodi, WMC, or something else because of your design choices and how those choices forced you to spend time and resources on fixing design holes?

Bobstr
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by Bobstr »


I can appreciate all of this, but I'm only referring to WMC's design for TV. It still has better remote support, show recording/retrieval options, and guide. After all of the years of development on your software, WMC is still the superior option. When you had to build your own software, why wouldn't you have started your design with the (mostly) universally implemented elements in place, then branch off into other options? It would seem the more prudent short and long term strategy with a small team. Rather than fixing holes in your design you'd be working on new features (it took you years to implement recording on one channel, something basic and intuitive to Kodi, Plex, WMC, Cox, Comcast, Fios...). All of those services have a design that most anyone can move between with hardly any learning curve, but people that buy your software have to "sell" your design to the family. That seems a counterintuitive strategy to me. The first time I saw my customers saying this I would have changed direction, knowing that I'm sacrificing potential revenue if I don't.

Wouldn't you have preferred people using your software rather than choosing Plex, Kodi, WMC, or something else because of your design choices and how those choices forced you to spend time and resources on fixing design holes?
I don't know SD's design choice process (I'm not part of their company, I'm just a user), nor do I understand the causes of their timelines. However, it's alot harder to build something as big as what you call out to be the 'universally implemented elements'. The code behind the display that becomes the user interface has to be developed and costs alot of money and can take alot of time. Add that some features or sets of code may or may not be things that can't be done without paying royalties or purchasing the rights to. These things can easily overwhelm a small company if not carefully managed and scheduled. I know that big companies have similar issues at times. Not making excuses for SD, just stating my thoughts and opinions. I can understand your frustrations and I hold some of the same.

bruiserker
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by bruiserker »

Bobstr wrote: Fri Jan 29, 2021 3:47 pm

I can appreciate all of this, but I'm only referring to WMC's design for TV. It still has better remote support, show recording/retrieval options, and guide. After all of the years of development on your software, WMC is still the superior option. When you had to build your own software, why wouldn't you have started your design with the (mostly) universally implemented elements in place, then branch off into other options? It would seem the more prudent short and long term strategy with a small team. Rather than fixing holes in your design you'd be working on new features (it took you years to implement recording on one channel, something basic and intuitive to Kodi, Plex, WMC, Cox, Comcast, Fios...). All of those services have a design that most anyone can move between with hardly any learning curve, but people that buy your software have to "sell" your design to the family. That seems a counterintuitive strategy to me. The first time I saw my customers saying this I would have changed direction, knowing that I'm sacrificing potential revenue if I don't.

Wouldn't you have preferred people using your software rather than choosing Plex, Kodi, WMC, or something else because of your design choices and how those choices forced you to spend time and resources on fixing design holes?
I don't know SD's design choice process (I'm not part of their company, I'm just a user), nor do I understand the causes of their timelines. However, it's alot harder to build something as big as what you call out to be the 'universally implemented elements'. The code behind the display that becomes the user interface has to be developed and costs alot of money and can take alot of time. Add that some features or sets of code may or may not be things that can't be done without paying royalties or purchasing the rights to. These things can easily overwhelm a small company if not carefully managed and scheduled. I know that big companies have similar issues at times. Not making excuses for SD, just stating my thoughts and opinions. I can understand your frustrations and I hold some of the same.
Sorry, but I quoted you by mistake. That being said though,

Yes, it does cost a lot of money to build a feature rich UI.

***MOD EDIT: REMOVED PART OF COMMENT. -NS ***

I would also think it would make more sense for a small company building their own app to sit down and start building something that's been practically designed dozens of times already. Why would you spend extra time and resources building something that doesn't follow convention? Why spend more time trying to solve problems that have already been solved by your peer's applications? Because you wanted to be different? Do they think other companies or groups are going to see this design and say, "hey, we've been doing it wrong this whole time"? No, Hulu tried and it didn't work.

I see wasted resources, causing missing and late features, some of the missing may never appear because the UI can't support them.

NedS
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by NedS »

bruiserker wrote: Sat Jan 30, 2021 2:03 am Sorry, but I quoted you by mistake. That being said though,

Yes, it does cost a lot of money to build a feature rich UI.

***MOD EDIT: REMOVED PART OF COMMENT. -NS ***

I would also think it would make more sense for a small company building their own app to sit down and start building something that's been practically designed dozens of times already. Why would you spend extra time and resources building something that doesn't follow convention? Why spend more time trying to solve problems that have already been solved by your peer's applications? Because you wanted to be different? Do they think other companies or groups are going to see this design and say, "hey, we've been doing it wrong this whole time"? No, Hulu tried and it didn't work.

I see wasted resources, causing missing and late features, some of the missing may never appear because the UI can't support them.
We're getting dangerously close to the rule about talking about patents/licensing/etc, so I removed that part of your comment. There's a big hint in this forum moderation action, please notice it.

bruiserker
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Re: Having a hard time convincing family (wife) that HDHR DVR can replace WMC

Post by bruiserker »

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