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Post Posted:: February 14th, 2017, 1:40 am 

Joined: January 10th, 2015, 9:56 am
Posts: 1573
Having a mobile version of Checker would be very useful for those of us who use a tablet / phone to do PL's.
This is what is needed ... Are you interested and able to help?

Quote:
There are a number of steps to getting a version of checker that would run
on Android/iOS.
I'll list them with some notes so you can see where they may be problems.

1 Rewrite the interface so it uses "JavaFX" instead of the older "Swing".
(Only JavaFX has been ported to mobile devices.)
- I'm planning to do this when I get time.

2 Add the changes needed to get it to work on mobile devices, using Gluon's
JavaFX ports.
- This should be doable, but not trivial. It is mostly a matter of
investing the necessary time, but there may be deeper issues. The mobile
versions of Java do not support all of the same functionality as the desktop
versions.

3 Test on mobile devices and release to app stores. This requires the
following:
- A Google Play developer account (I have one so no problem)
- An Android device for testing (ditto)
- An Apple Developer account (I don't have one and they are about 100
USD/year)
- An Apple iPad/iPhone device for testing (I don't have one, but might be
able to get away with only testing it on the simulator on a MacBook)

By the way, the lack of an Apple Developer account is also why the Mac
version gives you a scary warning that you need to take special steps to
bypass when you install.

One thing that could help is that when I do (1) I am also planning on
placing the code on GitHub. That means that anyone could help work on the
code (by submitting "pull requests").


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Post Posted:: August 19th, 2017, 4:07 am 

Joined: August 12th, 2017, 9:58 am
Posts: 77
Location: Utopia:β1.5, δimension:ψ-accessible only, μultiverse:9
As for iOS, there are ways to side load apps sans dev acct. No Jailbreaking is required, or I wouldn't even consider posting this. No paid dev acct required, either, as free ones are available. I've got an active GitHub account and do volunteer work with a few select projects.

X8716e · GitHub
https://github.com/X8716e

GitHub - Sn0wCh1ld/App-Installer: On-device IPA installer
https://github.com/Sn0wCh1ld/App-Installer

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Post Posted:: August 19th, 2017, 5:32 am 
LibriVox Admin Team

Joined: April 3rd, 2008, 3:55 am
Posts: 27803
Location: Melbourne,Australia
Just fyi , this is not an "official" request. If I remenber correctly the coding for the current version was released on GitHub. It's a handy tool but not an essential part of the LibriVox software and I don't think there has been any general discussion in the forums about the need for a mobile version, I don't think many people process their recordings on phones, It may help some proof listeners however.

Anne

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Post Posted:: August 19th, 2017, 9:37 am 

Joined: August 12th, 2017, 9:58 am
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Location: Utopia:β1.5, δimension:ψ-accessible only, μultiverse:9
It would be of use to proof listeners like myself who are unable to use that specific program for any number of reasons, hence my reply offering any help needed (within my specific limits) in realizing this project.

😀

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Post Posted:: August 20th, 2017, 6:26 am 

Joined: January 10th, 2015, 9:56 am
Posts: 1573
On further discussion I think that checker should be part of the uploading process and readers should post the results in the thread with the url. While it is the PL responsibility to listen to the piece, automatically running checker will make readers take ownership of things like volume and background noise.
Regards


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Post Posted:: August 20th, 2017, 6:18 pm 
LibriVox Admin Team

Joined: February 23rd, 2009, 4:37 pm
Posts: 13118
Location: Chicago, IL
Kim,

It would seem to be a plus to have a mobile version of checker - for those DPLs/BCs who want to check technical specs, or for those who want to help with test files, from their mobile devices.

As to posting checker results when posting an uploader link, the vast majority of sections submitted have no issues. I haven't run checker on any of my files in years and I'm guessing many other readers are in the same position. I would avoid adding complexity to the process for everyone (copy and post checker results when posting an upload link) to address a narrow set of issues for a small number of readers (probably mostly newbies who don't have the system down yet - and who won't necessarily be helped by having yet another step to do to upload a file).

I can see volume when cataloging and if I can't adjust it using the cataloging software (which sometimes happens when a file has spikes that would be clipped), I ask the BC to address. I think I've done that less than 5 times in MCing over 500 projects. Readings on background noise are often misleading in checker - I prefer people to rely on listening to decide if it is an issue. I've seen maybe 5 files with an incorrect bit rate or sample speed during cataloging. So in my unscientific sample, assuming 15 sections/project, I've picked up ~10 issues during cataloging that require BC follow up over roughly 7500 sections cataloged. Seems like the current system is working pretty well for the vast majority of projects and readers in that issues are spotted and corrected before the cataloging process begins.

Regards,
MaryAnn

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Post Posted:: August 20th, 2017, 11:24 pm 

Joined: January 10th, 2015, 9:56 am
Posts: 1573
MaryAnn,
Just a reminder that the files you catalogue have already been pl'd hence no problems.
Putting it as part of the upload process is a pretty simple fix and while 90% of the files have no issues I've had situations where even Admins have used the wrong technical specs and uploaded a number of files before it being noticed.
It will help with the 1 minute tests too. Users get immediate feedback on these issues.
PL is then focused on the content size hopefully the user fixes the technical issues right away.
Making a mobile version of checker is difficult from those that I've spoken to as well as needing special accounts etc. So this is a relatively easy fix that will ensure problems identified upfront rather than at the end of the process.
A 100% check at the front end is a good standard in the real world.... (my day job) and here it can be done pretty easily..
Kim


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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 8:11 am 

Joined: August 17th, 2013, 8:51 am
Posts: 787
Location: Connecticut, US
MaryAnnSpiegel wrote:
It would seem to be a plus to have a mobile version of checker - for those DPLs/BCs who want to check technical specs, or for those who want to help with test files, from their mobile devices.

As to posting checker results when posting an uploader link, the vast majority of sections submitted have no issues....


Based on my experiences as a reader/BC, PL, and DPL, I agree with all the points MaryAnn mentioned in her post. Having PLed/DPLed over 700 sections, there has rarely been any sections (I could count them on one hand) which had a technical issue. Most of those are with newbies who are just learning the process, and they (usually) quickly get the understanding of the issue and have no further problems with it going forward.

IMO, mandating that readers use Checker is really counter to LV's stance that users can use any software (and hardware) they want to record audio for LV. And, from my perspective, requiring it is like using a sledge hammer to hang a picture frame. :) In general, it seems project members are successfully handing this issue if it arises.

I try when discussing a solution to come up with an alternate if I disagree with one being discussed. If this really is a problem for LV (and I'm not convinced it is), then maybe PLs/DPLs should add checking technical specs to their listening review of the sections. When I first began PLing, I would check the technical specs of recordings by newbies as an assist to the MCs (to catch any issues before the time for cataloguing). Then I never stopped, and check the technical specs for every section I PL/DPL (it doesn't take me any time at all to do so). It makes sense, since the PL/DPL must review the section anyway, to review for technical specs also.

FWIW,
Don

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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 8:47 am 

Joined: January 10th, 2015, 9:56 am
Posts: 1573
Like posting the time of the piece - it is pretty meaningless 99.99% of the time...

We all make mistakes and slip up from time to time... Hence I run checker on around 90% of my PL's and yes, I do find issues.

As I said - an admin changed her settings for 1 project and forgot to change them back to LV settings. She'd uploaded around 20 recordings when I pointed it out and she had to go and fix the others too...
Results from a member who has been around since 2008 (his current project)
Quote:
10 Chapter 4 background noise
12 Chapter 4b background noise
13 Chapter 5a alpha 1 background noise
14 Chapter 5a alpha 2 part 1 background noise
15 Chapter 5a alpha 2 part 2 background noise
16 Chapter 5 a beta volume

The person who PL'd section 9 didn't mention the level of background noise (I'd downloaded and checked that file too) which was then corrected after I pointed it out.

So making a 100% test at the time of uploading seems like the easiest solution other than providing those PL'ers who DO want to make checks a mobile solution (of which a server based solution is so much easier to implement and we already have the technical know how).

But what would i know ...


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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 9:14 am 
LibriVox Admin Team

Joined: June 15th, 2008, 10:30 pm
Posts: 36535
Location: Toronto, ON (but Minnesotan to age 32)
Background noise is subjective. What Checker "fails" in this regard may or may not be acceptable.

And some PLs are too picky. :) I have no idea what project you're referring to, but it is possible the PL on the previous sections heard the background noise but considered it minimal enough to not mention.

This goes back to our prime directive (and that we're more focused on the readers than the listeners), that we're not forcing readers to make recordings of professional quality. If a reader wants files with not a speck of background noise, that's fine. But the vast, vast majority of readers (and listeners!) don't care if there's a little noise here and there, or a light, noticeable static throughout the recording. It's much more important that we "make available, for free, all public domain books in audio form" (or however our prime directive is worded).

We aren't a professional organization. We aren't trying to have perfect quality control. We aren't about perfect quality.

Once in a while one may run into a situation like the admin who had reset their tech specs (I do that for other purposes and may forget to set them back, but I catch it 99.9% of the time). But the vast, vast majority of files come in with the critical specs A-OK. I would not be in favor of making a Checker-type program, even on the server side, required for all uploads.

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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 9:48 am 

Joined: January 10th, 2015, 9:56 am
Posts: 1573
"And we're more concerned with the Readers" ... and the PL'ers? or don't we count?

Funnily enough I've found most readers - except those with admin responsibilities - want to do the best that they can. (Those with admin responsibilities are always coming back with "I don't have to do this because the rules don't say I have to" so I don't like PL'ing them.) Although I'm pretty hard pressed when I really think about it what makes a "see PL comments" note and a piece unusable in terms of LV standards, 99.9% of them are fixed satisfactorily.

The background noise is pretty substantial - like 50db. I can definitely see it on the wave form and hear it (and I don't PL with headphones). And the volume?

lets get down to FACTS ...
1) Some PL'ers use checker
2) We'd like it to be available on a mobile platform (although as Annise and Tricia kindly pointed out the readers are what matters here)
3) Installing on the server is easier than building a mobile platform from scratch.
4) We're short on PL'ers (Still waiting a year for one of my projects to pick up a dpl) and the ability to assist with newbie testing when you're not at your PC and have 5 mins is ZERO.
5) PL'ers have a thankless task...
6) Most readers want to give their best recording possible and the PL'ers are the people that help them.
7) Best way to keep volunteers is to make things easy for them.

Admin's (or Gods) should actually try to LISTEN to what the volunteers on the site want every now and again, rather than completely shutting them down with "we don't want it, so why should you (see Annise's comment above)".


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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 10:25 am 
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Joined: November 22nd, 2005, 10:22 am
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Quote:
3) Installing on the server is easier than building a mobile platform from scratch.
No, this assumption is incorrect. Given our current environment, it is harder to install it on the server (and make it usable, it's not just chucking a file into a folder ;) ) than to create a mobile version, even factoring in the foibles of iOS development.

Quote:
Admin's (or Gods) should actually try to LISTEN to what the volunteers on the site want every now and again, rather than completely shutting them down with "we don't want it, so why should you".
Heh, we ARE listening, otherwise we wouldn't respond. :D Just, listening isn't the same as agreeing. I agree with those noting that this is a far smaller problem, in their experience, than the significant amount of work involved in either currently proposed solution implies.

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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 10:34 am 
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Seems like we're mixing two different issues here: the Checker as a PL tool and how available it is, and the "reader vs. listener / how much should PLs require readers to fix" debate.

Note that I said I wasn't familiar with the project you were referring to, so I don't know how bad the background noise was. What I was saying was that a lot of the PL duties aren't covered in the Checker, and the Checker cannot be a substitute for a "real, live PL" listening to the files. I don't think making the Checker something web-based will ease any shortage of PLs we might have.

Quote:
lets get down to FACTS ...
1) Some PL'ers use checker
2) We'd like it to be available on a mobile platform (although as Annise and Tricia kindly pointed out the readers are what matters here)
3) Installing on the server is easier than building a mobile platform from scratch.
4) We're short on PL'ers (Still waiting a year for one of my projects to pick up a dpl) and the ability to assist with newbie testing when you're not at your PC and have 5 mins is ZERO.
5) PL'ers have a thankless task...
6) Most readers want to give their best recording possible and the PL'ers are the people that help them.
7) Best way to keep volunteers is to make things easy for them.

Admin's (or Gods) should actually try to LISTEN to what the volunteers on the site want every now and again, rather than completely shutting them down with "we don't want it, so why should you (see Annise's comment above)".

1) Granted.
2) Granted (This has nothing to do with readers mattering).
3) EDITED due to Cori's more experienced opinion on this point. :)
4a) I'm unsure on this point. Just because projects don't have DPLs doesn't mean they don't get PL'd. Every project doesn't need a DPL; they just need to get PL'd. Are there sections in your year-without-a-DPL project that have waited a long time to get PL'd?
4b) Yes, the ability to assist with newbie tests without being at your computer is low/zero. Granted.
5) If PL'ers aren't having fun doing their volunteer task, they probably should rethink their volunteerism. :) One of our values here is to have fun doing our volunteer work. I'd hate to have any PL's feel like a slave.
6) Yes, within reason. This is where the endless debate about reader vs. listener starts. :)
7) No disagreement here.
8 (the "gods" comment) So far you're the only one who has suggested this. And it hasn't been shot down by the admins as a whole. You've gotten one neutral opinion on the idea as a whole (annise's isn't negative - read it again) and several positive ones. The one item that is a big sticking point is your conclusion: readers must submit their Checker results with their recordings. So far I think 3 admins have weighed in and one non-admin BC/DPL, all against the reader-side mandatory Checker usage.

I know of no organization, no matter how ad-hoc, that sees an idea submitted by someone, that has such implications (a change of ethos and procedure, development time/energy/cost, etc.), and jumps right to it to implement it. Give it time to percolate before accusing the admins of being gods. :)

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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 10:48 pm 

Joined: August 12th, 2017, 9:58 am
Posts: 77
Location: Utopia:β1.5, δimension:ψ-accessible only, μultiverse:9
Quote:
So making a 100% test at the time of uploading seems like the easiest solution other than providing those PL'ers who DO want to make checks a mobile solution (of which a server based solution is so much easier to implement and we already have the technical know how).


Yes, it is. It's much simpler, really, and there's a way to give it a try if the powers that be wouldn't mind diverting a tiny fraction of their collective time in accomplishing the task. Start small - find an old desktop that's unwanted or unused for whatever reason... (normally the person has "upgraded" to something newer and "better" as they've been told to do by the people performing newspaper ads inside those boxes people stare at. I don't know how they stay alive without eating or drinking, but that's a tangent for another reply... also they who?)... install a *free* Linux OS running a low-recourse DE, e.g. Debian with XFCE, or whatever they who decide are most comfortable using, run a virtual instance of either one of the two proprietary & costly OS's that allow Checker to function (as it really does seem to be the program of choice among people who would enjoy both the Art *and* the Science of PL'ing, among whom I'd most certainly be) and open the freely made test server it to a test group of individuals who would really like to volunteer their time to LibriVox for all it has done for them over the years to actually see for themselves if it does make a difference for them as a PL'er. Free, little effort, happy volunteers. From what I gather that's essentially what StarFleet wants? Okay, so since I see only ranking Admirals around I'm appointing myself a Captain. Now, I'm further out into the depths of space than any Admiral has been in several years. I'm lost in Romulan territory. The only way to find a way out for me is using a tool that's back on Earth, can be virtually transported to my location so I can find my way out of hostile territory. What is the best solution? a) pretend it's all fake and forget about it b) (re)actively choose not to make the tool accessible, leaving me to die at the hands of the Romulans - Romulans! c) actively make the choice that allows me the opportunity come home to Earth, even if it does require honest & objective debate among everyone sitting in their Admiral chairs inside StarFleet Command.

What I see happening is this: stagnation vs progression, or, i.e. (being somewhat more direct and subjective in framing the imaginary debate) "everything works the way it works so let it go on working and working and working" vs "change? why bother when only some people will be told they can't volunteer because they've not the ability to so much as leave bed 22-23h/24h due to disease and the one thing that's kept them sane, kept their mind functioning and growing, has been the very organization telling them they're not needed/wanted/allowed to volunteer since they only have a handheld device to access, which is the very thing from which they discovered LibriVox and use everyday (and night) to listen to books they no longer have the physical ability to so much as hold long enough to read"

Listen, my life is more existing than anything. I know I'm going to die a fairly terrible sort of death. LibriVox is a source, my main source, of comfort and of feeling like I actually have friends around more often than not. The pain I live with on a daily basis defies any quantitative 1-10 scale or it's equivalent elsewhere. What I'm saying is I really don't know what I'd have done if I hadn't discovered LibriVox. That's how bad the pain is, that's how imprisoned I am. So yes, I really am in hostile territory being told I can't do the only thing I can do as a volunteer. All of that metaphor, all of the brain meanderings, are my way of covertly dealing with it all. I've obviously no need to hide my reasons anymore, though, after just now very publicly revealing them, which is rare for me to do. But I hear solitary confinement can mess with people's minds...

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Post Posted:: August 21st, 2017, 11:36 pm 

Joined: August 7th, 2016, 6:39 pm
Posts: 1040
I'm not really sure what we're debating over anymore, even though I've been quietly following along in the background. I don't think anyone is telling anyone else that they can't volunteer. :hmm: I thought the issue at first was, "Can we somehow find someone to design a mobile app version of Checker?" (Which I do think is a great idea, by the way.) And I don't think I saw anyone saying, "No, we don't want or need and won't allow that app." It's just that, thus far, no one with the time and know-how has stepped up to do it. Am I following the conversation thus far?

Then the suggestion was made: "What if we start telling all of our readers that they have to run Checker on every section they upload so that PLers don't have to?" Well, now I'm confused. I didn't know PLers were currently required to do Checker for every section they listen to. Are they? Because if so, I've been falling down on the job. I've just been listening to each section in my browser.

Anyway, a suggestion has been made. Some people start politely responding, giving pros and cons of the suggestion. For what it's worth, I happen to think that this proposed requirement is unnecessary for many reasons, several of which have been listed, so I won't go into it here. I will just say that for the past several months, I've been one of the handful of people helping newbies with their one-minute test, and quite often, they end up saying something to the effect of, "Yay, I finally made a passing test! I'll never ever change my settings ever again!" I, and others, point almost all of them to the download link for checker, and almost all of them download and use it and think it's really cool. So a lot of new people are already using it, without it being "required".

I don't know anything about building apps or what "server based solution" even means, so I can't speak to that. But in my experience so far, everyone on LV, admin or not, has been incredibly kind and polite, even when disagreeing. And this thread makes me a little sad. Maybe I'm reading something into it that's not here, but it sounds to me like there's a lot of animosity here, and I just really don't know why. :cry:

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