Portable music player

Sam Geeraerts samgee at elmundolibre.be
Wed Dec 1 17:16:55 EST 2010

With the Gift Exchanging Days approaching I was checking out some wish 
lists. One thing I noticed on there was a portable audio player [PAP] 
(well, in a more popular wording ;) ). So I thought: instead of buying a 
player with a non-free OS and replacing that with Rockbox, why not give 
a (pre-configured) Nanonote instead?

Considering I'm dealing with non-geeks I saw these issues:
1) BNN is bigger than average PAP.
2) BNN is heavier than average PAP.
3) BNN is clamshell, unlike most PAP.
4) BNN has a lot of buttons.
5) BNN boots slower than most PAP.
6) Playlist font in gmu is tiny.
7) gmu's interface is more complicated than just arrows+vol+2 other keys.

I could probably get away with 1, 2 and 3 if I tell them about Qi 
philosophy and how clam design protects the buttons and screen and I can 
probably make up some more excuses. ;)

4 is not so bad if not for 7. Then I could just say: these few buttons 
matter, ignore all the rest.

Could the BNN boot faster if it only had to run gmu? Would not requiring 
the USB port matter for boot speed? Putting audio files directly on the 
SD card instead of via scp is easier for the non-technical user anyway.

I believe gmu has support for skins. Is there a skin that has bigger 
fonts, so that grandma can read which track she's playing?

I suppose 7 is not solved by just another skin. I think a simpler 
interface comes down to either disabling some features (play/pause, skip 
and auto-load of everything on the SD card should be sufficient for a 
minimal player) or replacing some function keys with GUI elements.

So, what's the potential of the BNN to make it a portable audio player 
and how much of these (and perhaps other) issues could be addressed? 
It'd be nice to not have to put the usual junk under the Christmas tree 
this year.

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