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Author Topic: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])  (Read 10222 times)

Denti

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thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« on: July 05, 2014, 06:01:43 pm »

Here's my scenario: I'm using a "replace([Artist],, ;)" expression to split collaborations (and probably also later composer/performers) so that they appear grouped under each separate artist, divided by . (I want to keep & for other purposes, hence this bullet.)

The only problem is that I can't get the artists that are grouped this way to appear other than as "[Varies]." For example, "Lou Reed John Cale" have a record together, which now appears with artist Lou Reed's and artist John Cale's albums. Nice. Perfect.

However, this album still has "Lou Reed John Cale" as the artist, so that when I chose [Artist] (or the default) for the thumbnail display in the Artists view I see, for Reed and Cale, respectively, "[Varies]," because of course it *does* vary.

I've been trying all day to come up with a workaround to display "Lou Reed" and "John Cale" for each of these artists in the Artist view, but have been unsuccessful.

Any ideas?

P.S. My idea was for an expression that said something like "display [Artist], but ignore those with "

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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2014, 09:57:42 pm »

Anyone?
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glynor

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2014, 10:05:27 pm »

Post the expression you have.

I don't understand what the heck you're trying to do, or why.  MC treats [Artist] as a List-type field, and the semicolon is the designated delimiter.  What nonsense are you trying to achieve that can't be achieved by entering Lou Reed; John Cale as the [Artist] value, and using the regular [Artist] field as the Category in your view?

If you have a substantially more complex situation, you need to provide substantially more detail on what, where, how, and why.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2014, 10:30:23 pm »

I want to avoid a list of artist groupings such as

Oren Ambarchi
Oren Ambarchi & Jim O'Rourke
Oren Ambarchi & Stephen O'Malley & Randall Dunn
Oren Ambarchi & Thomas Brinkman
etc
etc.

I have lots of these types of artists who do lots of collaborations and it's easier to navigate the Artist view when there's just one grouping

Oren Ambarchi

I currently have all these above collaborations marked in the album field (e.g. "with Jim O'Rourke"). But I want to be able to see this collaboration in the Jim O'Rourke grouping (and the O'Malley, Brinkman, etc...), too.

That's the why.

Mr C suggested the "replace([Artist],&, ;)" expression to do this splitting (I substituted the & with ), so that any given collaboration appears twice, grouped under each artist (or three times if there are three artists, etc.). But this does not allow me to keep the display name, because it introduces a new artist (e.g. "Oren Ambarchi & Jim O'Rourke" to both "Oren Ambarchi" and "Jim O'Rourke") to the single-artist groupings.

I thought of adding "Artist 2" "Artist 3" etc. fields, but wouldn't know how to get those to display properly, either, since my current Artist view has a pretty complex expression in it:

if(isempty([Primary Artist]),  /(Multiple Artists/),
     firstnotempty([All Artists (Last Name), [Artist]))/
       ifelse(isequal([album artist (auto)], /(Multiple Artists/)), ;/(Multiple Artists/))&datatype=
    This puts compilation appearances together with the artist's other albums *and* in the multiple artists grouping. (I use a field "Primary Artist" to indicate whether the artist has any full albums on their own.) Inside this expression I am having trouble getting the collaborations to work.

    Surely this is still confusing, but I'm happy to keep explaining until I can get this right (unless what I'm wanting is impossible).
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glynor

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2014, 10:40:38 pm »

I want to avoid a list of artist groupings such as

Oren Ambarchi
Oren Ambarchi & Jim O'Rourke
Oren Ambarchi & Stephen O'Malley & Randall Dunn
Oren Ambarchi & Thomas Brinkman
etc
etc.

I have lots of these types of artists who do lots of collaborations and it's easier to navigate the Artist view when there's just one grouping

Right.  MC handles this use case out of the box.  What you need to do is just convert your existing [Artist] tags from:

Oren Ambarchi
Oren Ambarchi & Jim O'Rourke
Oren Ambarchi & Stephen O'Malley & Randall Dunn
Oren Ambarchi & Thomas Brinkman


To:

Oren Ambarchi
Oren Ambarchi; Jim O'Rourke
Oren Ambarchi; Stephen O'Malley; Randall Dunn
Oren Ambarchi; Thomas Brinkman


Then, when you use [Artist] as a category in any view (or Smartlist or whatver) files that are tagged with:
Oren Ambarchi; Stephen O'Malley; Randall Dunn

Will show up, under all three artist's names, not one grouping called that anymore.  The same song will appear multiple times in the view, once under Oren Ambarchi, once under Stephen O'Malley, and once under Randal Dunn.

You cannot substitute your own delimiter.  The semicolon is the List-Type delimiter.

It sounds like MrC was trying to give you a way to select a whole big group of files that may, or may not, have artists separated like that with the ampersand, and convert them to semicolon delimited lists, as MC expects, all in one go.  That's certainly possible, though caution is warranted because what about Billie Joe Bob & The Rockets or whatever?

I'm not sure about the other stuff you're asking about.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2014, 07:11:42 am »

OK, but this is no different than using the expression Mr C gave me. When I use ; to separate artists then I'm back to the problem indicated in the subject line here: I get [Varies] instead of the artist name in the Artist view.

Is there a way around this? Is there a way to display the main artist for that grouping in the thumbnail?
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glynor

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2014, 08:08:09 am »

If you use the built-in [Artist] field as your category, it works correctly, and does not show varies.  The issue is that you're using a custom Expression that is generating the Varies output, I think.

I don't get the expression thing you're doing, though, or why.  There might be a way to keep the expression and fix it, by tagging the output as list type or something.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2014, 08:18:58 am »

I am using the built-in [Artist] view as my thumbnail display and it's giving me [Varies]. I also just created a new library view without any of my expressions and it's also showing me [Varies]. What am I doing wrong?
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2014, 08:38:51 am »

I think I figured it out: it's because I'm using my own field "All Artists (Last Name)" as the sort field to alphabetize artists last name first. This appears to be throwing a wrench into the situation.

So: how can I use the ; WITH a last name sort? There's got to be a way!


Is there a way to make the thumbnail display conditional on something? For example, I have these collaborations marked as [Release Type] = "Collaboration," with everything else either "Albums" or "EPs" or whatever. Can I create an expression that tells MC to display the [Artist] but only for the albums in the grouping that are [Release Type] = "Albums"?  Or, inversely, to ignore the ones that are "Collaborations" when displaying [Artist]?
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2014, 12:00:05 pm »

The closest I've gotten to getting what I want is to keep my expression in place* and use the ; to split collaborations, and use [Name] as the thumbnail display. But the problem is that I don't get the artists displayed last name first. (Note that in JRemote [pictured below] I leave "display group as" blank to get this effect.)



This sorts everything the way I want it, but does not display it right. If I switch the thumbnail to [Artist] I get [Varies] for those artists I've split up using ; ... not ideal. Any way to fix this?

* The crazy complicated expression does this for me:

1. Groups "primary artists" (I choose who these are) together, including regular releases and compilation appearances that would normally only appear together with (Multiple Artists)

2. Allows for those compilation tracks also to appear in their proper place on the compilation album sorted with (Multiple Artists)

3. Does all this by sorting last name first
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #10 on: July 09, 2014, 08:11:29 am »

OK, I've been playing around with this a lot, still without success, but I'd like to report my findings and see if anyone can help.
The experiments are with:

Artist:
Oren Ambarchi; Stephen O'Malley; Randall Dunn
Lou Reed; John Cale

All tests using JRemote; Gizmo display settings.

Test A:

Expression to group by:

if(isempty([Primary Artist]),  /(Multiple Artists/),
[Artist])/
ifelse(isequal([album artist (auto)], /(Multiple Artists/)),
;/(Multiple Artists/))&datatype=
    Expression to display:

[blank]

Sorting: All Artists (Last Name)

This displays the names correctly (last name last), but does not sort them right. Cale, Ambarchi, and Reed are bumped to the top, because I have other albums by them. O'Malley and Dunn are sorted where Ambarchi would be.





Test B:

Expression to group by:

if(isempty([Primary Artist]),  /(Multiple Artists/),
[All Artists (Last Name)])/
ifelse(isequal([album artist (auto)], /(Multiple Artists/)),
;/(Multiple Artists/))&datatype=
    Expression to display:

[Artist]&datatype=
    Sort by:

    Ascending

    This gets me closest to what I want! Cale, Ambarchi, and Reed all appear sorted and displayed correctly! Only O'Malley and Dunn, though sorted correctly, are displayed wrong. That's because I have no other albums by them. In the end, I'm OK with this. I will simply only use the ; delimiter with collaborations with artists I already have records by.





P.S. In MC Cale, Ambarchi, and Reed are still appearing as "[Varies]"[/list][/list][/list]
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MM_switcher

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #11 on: July 09, 2014, 08:59:43 am »

Interesting discussion. Just one off-topic question: Extremely nice skin or whatever that is. How can I achieve that?

Thanks  :) :)
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #12 on: July 09, 2014, 09:15:41 am »

Newest version of JRemote.

Anyone care to speculate as to why JRemote's settings  avoid the "[Varies]" default?

Or  perhaps someone can offer an easier solution to the problem.  Thanks.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #13 on: July 09, 2014, 09:29:10 am »

Looks like I spoke too soon. The "correct" display is really a cache bug of sorts. When I enter into the artist grouping and go back out, the names switch to last name first:




So I guess it was all too good to be true? It does pop back again once I select a non-collaboration album, some maybe the error is the bug? I suspect it's the other way around, since every time I open JRemote I see this:



And have to open up the incorrectly displayed multiple artists group and go back out to get it to display:

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6233638

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #14 on: July 09, 2014, 10:20:08 am »

If I'm understanding things correctly, you need to have a [Primary Artist (last name)] field.

Then you would use:

Group By: FirstNotEmpty([Primary Artist (last name)], [Artist (last name)], [Album Artist (auto)])
Display: FirstNotEmpty([Primary Artist],[Album Artist (auto)])
Sort: Ascending
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #15 on: July 09, 2014, 04:53:26 pm »

Can you explain how you're thinking it would help?

Wouldn't I end up with the same Last Name, First Name problems?
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6233638

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #16 on: July 09, 2014, 05:30:07 pm »

Sorting affects the "group by" field, so you want to sort by the last name fields, and then display the first name.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #17 on: July 09, 2014, 07:18:37 pm »

That is essentially what I'm already doing, and it's also what's causing me such a headache, because for display/thumbnail purposes MC does not seem to care about the ;-delimiter and treats Artist fields with them as distinct from the artists the delimiter is supposed to output. Thus the "[Varies]".

My successes above have proven to be fleeting. JRemote can't handle displaying the artists in this way and gets caught up in caching issues. I guess if I treat my successes as glitches, then I'm back at square one with the same problem.

Anyone able to help?
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2014, 09:44:18 am »

Yippee! I came up with a simple solution:

Created a new field called "Display Artist", copied all of the "Artist" field to it, and went in for all ;-delimiters and left this field blank. Works perfectly!!

Only problem is: it makes JRemote crash.  :(
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6233638

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #19 on: July 10, 2014, 01:46:27 pm »

Well I asked Denti to send me some files, as it really wasn't clear to me how things were being tagged and why it wasn't being displayed correctly.
 
I have a better idea of what he is trying to achieve now, though I haven't yet figured out a solution.
 
  • Only list compilations under the (Multiple Artists) heading. (do not split into individual artists)
  • List collaborative works under the individual artist names.
  • Also include collaborative works in the (Multiple Artists) group.
  • Sort all artists by last name, but display their first name.

To handle #2 he is using a custom tag [Primary Artist] which is set to 1 for collaborative works.
To handle #4 the custom tag [All Artists (last name) is used, which is a list the same as [Artist] with the first and last names swapped around.
 

The main problem I am having is creating an expression which sorts by last name, but then displays first name.
This is relatively easy to do in Standard View, where you can simply use an expression which modifies [Name] to flip the first & last names around. (though the expression I used may fail on certain edge-cases)
 
In Theater View/Gizmo (which I believe behave exactly the same) the problem is that using [Name] in the expression simply pulls a name from inside the group, it does not use the group name.
I haven't been able to figure out if there's an expression which is able to modify the group name.
And if you try using Artist or Album Artist, you get [Varies], because it can differ for each track in the group.



Thumbnail text is:
  • Grouping/sort value
  • Corrected display name (only in Standard View)
  • Album Artist (auto)
  • Artist

(I added the Daft Punk track because it has multiple artists listed, to see how that was handled outside of the samples that Denti provided)
 
So hopefully that makes things a lot clearer, if anyone else is able to help with this.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #20 on: July 10, 2014, 02:06:03 pm »

Thanks 6233638!

A couple of quick clarifications:


  • Only list compilations under the (Multiple Artists) heading. (do not split into individual artists)
  • List collaborative works under the individual artist names.
  • Also include collaborative works in the (Multiple Artists) group.
  • Sort all artists by last name, but display their first name.

To handle #2 he is using a custom tag [Primary Artist] which is set to 1 for collaborative works.
To handle #4 the custom tag [All Artists (last name) is used, which is a list the same as [Artist] with the first and last names swapped around.

1. I want to list compilations BOTH under (Multiple Artists) and also split into individual artists. (this is already accomplished by the expression I use)

But to do so ONLY when I have at least one full album by the compilation artists. This I mark with the "Primary Artist" field. This, again, all works fine.

2. Yes, accomplished by using ; to separate artists in the [Artist] field.

3. Yes, but actually (see 1.) I want this for all [Primary Artists]. Again, not really the main problem.

4. Sorting and displaying is where things get difficult. Now I HAVE succeeding by creating a new field I call "Artist (Display)" which basically duplicates the Artist field, but is left blank for all collaborative albums. This works in MC, but fails in JRemote.
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glynor

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #21 on: July 10, 2014, 02:11:02 pm »

The invisible font trick should solve sorting.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #22 on: July 10, 2014, 02:12:05 pm »

The invisible font trick should solve sorting.

Can you explain this. Never heard of the trick.
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6233638

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #23 on: July 10, 2014, 02:50:07 pm »

Wait, so you want compilations and collaborations to display the individual artist names?
So what is [Primary Artist] for then?
 
I thought the whole reason you were using that was so that only collaborations were being split into their individual artist names.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #24 on: July 10, 2014, 03:02:02 pm »

Sorry for the confusion.

The "Primary Artist" tag is to identify those artists that I want displayed as individual artists. I have upwards of 4,000 different artists, counting compilation appearances. I don't want all of these displayed individually. But, I do want the compilation tracks by "primary artists" for whom I already have full albums to be grouped along with those albums, but also to appear under (Multiple Artists) in the compilation where they originate.

So yes, I want all collaborations to display individually. But no, not all compilations. The "Primary Artist" tag allows me to cut that 4,000 down to around 1,500 or so. Does that make sense?

Note that this works already fine. And adding collaborations also works fine, at least in terms of *grouping*. It's the display that gets mucked up.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #25 on: July 10, 2014, 03:26:30 pm »

Quote
Standard View, where you can simply use an expression which modifies [Name] to flip the first & last names around

Can you share this expression so I can experiment with it?
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glynor

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #26 on: July 10, 2014, 03:35:40 pm »

Search for my username and "artist name swap".
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #27 on: July 10, 2014, 03:47:56 pm »

Search for my username and "artist name swap".

What about the invisible font? (and how would you see implementing it)
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #28 on: July 10, 2014, 05:00:27 pm »

Ok, found the invisible font. Not sure how this would help. Can you point me in the right direction?

My solution (using a separate field [Artist (Display)] that simply leaves collaborations blank), which works in Standard View, but crashes JRemote, also doesn't work in Theater View, where it just produces a blank for those artists.

Is there any way to write an expression that would display [Artist] *except when* that field has a ; in it? Or would that put me in the same problem as when I leave my Artist (Display) field empty?

Another thing I was thinking: using RemoveCharacters to cut the ; and other artists from the collaboration files. But of course these change. We need a command that says "remove all characters to make field in the group equal" or something like that.

PS: where's MrC when you need him?
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glynor

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #29 on: July 10, 2014, 05:21:16 pm »

I suspect he's on vacation, but yes, I think MrC would be able to help.

MC will sort on text even if it is invisible, so you can prefix fields with "hidden" text that is only used for sorting, but not displayed.

I think it is even usually pretty smart about truncating off the hidden text on display so the fields don't end up extra wide, but I'm not positive about this.

There was some noise about it in a few of the many Grouping Trouble threads between me and MrC in the past.  I'd look up details but I'm busy and on my phone.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #30 on: July 10, 2014, 06:15:16 pm »

Still can't figure this out, even with the invisible font.
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Denti

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #31 on: July 10, 2014, 06:25:06 pm »

I just had a crazy idea that may work! I can get this to work by displaying my "All Artists (Last Name)" field, which has artists listed as "Last Name, First Name."

What if we used something like an expression to REVERSE this order, removing the comma and swopping the names? That would work! Problem is, I can't figure out what this would be, and the expression for doing a first name/last name swop is too complicated for me to figure out:

if(!regex([Artist], /#^([^,]+)\s+([^,]*?)$#/),
[Artist],   regex(listclean([Artist], 2, / ), /#^(?:(I+|[JS]r\.?)\s+)?(\S+)
(.*)$#/, -1)[R2]/,/ listclean([R3], 2, / )[R1])

Anyone want to help?
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6233638

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #32 on: July 10, 2014, 06:36:28 pm »

Well that's the approach I was taking. In Standard View, I simply used this to flip the names around:

Code: [Select]
Replace(ListClean([Name], 2, /,), /,, / )
The problem I was having is that in Standard View, [Name] lists the group name.
In Theater View, [Name] pull a name from within the group.
 
I don't really have any time to spend on this tonight though.
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glynor

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #33 on: July 10, 2014, 06:36:45 pm »

Wait a minute...

Why do you need to sort on this field at all?  Sort it using another, separate expression field, and use this one only for display.
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6233638

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Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
« Reply #34 on: July 10, 2014, 06:48:23 pm »

    Wait a minute...

    Why do you need to sort on this field at all?  Sort it using another, separate expression field, and use this one only for display.
    Here's the problem I was running into.
    Say you have three tracks, and this is the [All Artists (last name)] value for them:

    Braxton, Anthony
    Braxton, Anthony; Bailey, Derek
    Braxton, Anthony; Parker, Evan
     
    If you group by: [All Artists (last name)]&datatype=[list] the tracks will be listed under:

    Braxton, Anthony
    Bailey, Derek
    Parker, Evan
     
    When you change the display field to [Artist] you get [Varies] in return, as the artist field contains multiple values.



    It's entirely possible that I'm missing something obvious though.
    [/list]
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    Denti

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    Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
    « Reply #35 on: July 10, 2014, 06:50:16 pm »

    Wait a minute...

    Why do you need to sort on this field at all?  Sort it using another, separate expression field, and use this one only for display.

    I see what 6233638 means. That expression fixes most of the artists, but not the ones with collaborations. The ; delimiter throws it off, introducing other variables. I can't get it to display right, because I don't know where the stable artist name generated by the ; goes. Where is it? Why can't we tell MC to take *that* name when it displays the group name, not the field with artists separated by ;.

    This is driving me crazy.
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    Denti

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    Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
    « Reply #36 on: July 14, 2014, 05:54:28 pm »

    Bumping this back up to the first page, because I still need help on it.

    Please!
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    Denti

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    Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
    « Reply #37 on: July 21, 2014, 08:12:52 pm »

    Bumping again. Someone's gotta be able to help. When's Mr C coming back?
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    Denti

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    Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
    « Reply #38 on: July 27, 2014, 10:27:32 am »

    I'm not giving up on this. Tried a few more things today, to no avail.

    There's got to be a workaround! Anyone?
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    6233638

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    Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
    « Reply #39 on: July 27, 2014, 10:49:04 am »

    Sorry, I gave it a try, and I know what the problem is - I just don't know how to work around it.
    Hopefully MrC will be back soon, and able to help.
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    Denti

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    Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
    « Reply #40 on: July 27, 2014, 10:53:33 am »

    Sorry, I gave it a try, and I know what the problem is - I just don't know how to work around it.
    Hopefully MrC will be back soon, and able to help.

    I appreciate your help! I think the problem in solving this for me is understanding how in Theater View the value in a field is displayed.

    I'm getting inconsistent results playing around with this, and I think it's because in Theater View it must grab a value at random from any grouping to display. So when I choose [Artist] as the field to display it doesn't display that field for the whole group (so that if there are different artists in a group we would get "[Varies]"), but instead takes *one* of them. How does it determine which one?
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    Denti

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    Re: thumbnail display help (avoiding [Varies])
    « Reply #41 on: October 11, 2014, 07:07:10 pm »

    I still want to solve this. Can anyone (besides MrC, still MIA) help?
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