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Inside: SereneScreen Fan Forum (https://www.feldoncentral.com/forums/index.php)
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-   -   Make my own music (https://www.feldoncentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5344)

byteful 05-11-2010 02:23 AM

Make my own music
 
How do I, or even can I make MP3 files into the type that MA3 uses???? I like the music file that comes with the screensaver "stock" but would like to either add to it or replace it on occation.

Thanks
RW

feldon34 05-11-2010 05:52 AM

My understanding is, Marine Aquarium 3 will play back any standard mp3 file. Is this not what you are experiencing?

Dale 05-11-2010 07:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by byteful (Post 121489)
How do I, or even can I make MP3 files into the type that MA3 uses???? I like the music file that comes with the screensaver "stock" but would like to either add to it or replace it on occation.

Thanks
RW

Perhaps you are assuming that it must be a ".sgt" file like CanonGuitar.sgt

Try adding your own .mp3 (or other) music files, in the Music Playlist.

Oh, use the latest "Beta" version (11f at this time) available here, or you may be confused with how to add the music.

Let us know how that works.

byteful 05-11-2010 08:44 PM

Thanks Yall. Will check it out and let ya know how it goes.

Pepper 06-01-2010 10:04 AM

I can't get MP3 to play in MA3
 
I am running a Windows 7 pc, 64 bit, 4 Gb RAM, 1680 x 1050 display, and my MA3 version 3 will not let me use an MP3 music file. I like the guitar music, but I'd like to vary it if possible with my own MP3s. I right click on the desktop, select Personalize, select Preview for my MA3. While the Aquarium is running I press spaebar to call up the Controls, I then select Music, browse to my MP3, but if I select it, it does not play, and if I go back into the Aquarium Controls I see that my music file is no longer there.

Please advise - I hope you can help me resolve this or tell me what I'm doing wrong :confused:

feldon34 06-01-2010 12:38 PM

Pepper,

Welcome to the forums.

Where did you get this mp3 file, or if you created it, what program did you use?

Dale 06-01-2010 02:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by feldon34 (Post 122162)
Pepper,

Welcome to the forums.

Where did you get this mp3 file, or if you created it, what program did you use?

Morgan, the problem is almost certainly not with the mp3 file.

See the very bottom of page 1 of https://www.feldoncentral.com/forums...ead.php?t=5164

Pepper, thanks for describing precisely what you were doing. The bug is present in earlier versions of MA3 (like version 10d) - and only appears if you access this way:

"right click on the desktop, select Personalize, select Preview for my MA3. While the Aquarium is running I press spaebar to call up the Controls, I then select Music,"...

One solution is to run MA3 by clicking on the desktop icon (if you have one), or just let it start as a screensaver. Then press the spacebar, etc....

I think the bug has been fixed in the latest Beta, although I didn't test it in 11i. If you would like to try that, see https://www.feldoncentral.com/forums...ead.php?t=4385

Be sure to follow the directions for where to put the files, etc. etc.

Oh, and please come back and let us know if that works.

JohnWho 06-01-2010 02:36 PM

Also, after you "select" an MP3, and it shows in the list,

make sure you exit that screen by using the "OK" button.

"Cancel" pretty much ignores any changes or additions you've made.

Pepper 06-02-2010 08:29 AM

Many thanks, but maybe a new question?
 
Many thanks for your help with this problem.

I first made myself a desktop icon, then I followed that through to Marine Aquarium, where I clicked the SpaceBar, music, and added my MP3. It now works fine, but strangely the music only seems to stay put as my chosen song if I click Cancel - if I click OK the music reverts to the guitar. Could the buttons be inverted somehow?

Incidentally, the MP3 was originally an m4a song which I bought from Itunes and converted to MP3 with All Music Converter 4.0.2 I hope this is acceptable and allowed

Dale 06-02-2010 09:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pepper (Post 122177)
Many thanks for your help with this problem.

I first made myself a desktop icon, then I followed that through to Marine Aquarium, where I clicked the SpaceBar, music, and added my MP3. It now works fine, but strangely the music only seems to stay put as my chosen song if I click Cancel - if I click OK the music reverts to the guitar. Could the buttons be inverted somehow?

What version are you using? (Start MA3 using the desktop icon, and then press the "S" key while MA3 is running).

Pepper 06-02-2010 10:30 AM

more details
 
I started MA3 using desktop icon, pressed s and got #0 Beta 10D

Is there a later version?

I also found that the song I wanted was no longer staying selected - the Aquarium was reverting back to the guitar. I seem to have fixed that by removing guitar from the list in music. I hope I will be able to put it back when I want to use it again

Jim Sachs 06-02-2010 11:05 AM

You can download version 11i, which fixes this problem. The full installer version is not available yet, but you can simply replace the exiting file with the new one. More info here: https://www.feldoncentral.com/forums...ead.php?t=4385

Dale 06-02-2010 11:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pepper (Post 122180)
I also found that the song I wanted was no longer staying selected - the Aquarium was reverting back to the guitar. I seem to have fixed that by removing guitar from the list in music. I hope I will be able to put it back when I want to use it again

All of the songs that are in the list will play. I think in version 10d, they just play in order. But in the latest version (11i), there is a checkbox to make them play randomly.

The only way to get a song to not play, is to remove it from the list. If you want to get the CanonGuitar.sgt song back (after removing it), ask in this forum for instructions - it's not obvious.

(JohnWho - consider putting instructions in the readme).

feldon34 06-02-2010 01:18 PM

Jim,

It seems a lot of users are running Beta 10D and don't realize there's a later version. Didn't you put an expiration date?

Jim Sachs 06-02-2010 01:25 PM

No, 10d is still the official version on SereneScreen.com.

JohnWho 06-02-2010 01:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dale (Post 122184)
The only way to get a song to not play, is to remove it from the list. If you want to get the CanonGuitar.sgt song back (after removing it), ask in this forum for instructions - it's not obvious.

(JohnWho - consider putting instructions in the readme).

Good idea.

Could you point me toward the steps, or add it to the help me with the Readme thread?

I will check the final beta to see what happens when there are not files in the list and "music on" is selected, too, and add an appropriate note in the readme.

Dale 06-02-2010 02:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by feldon34 (Post 122185)
Jim,

It seems a lot of users are running Beta 10D and don't realize there's a later version. Didn't you put an expiration date?

This suggests that perhaps there should be a way to (at least) tell whether someone is running Beta or "Production". I absolutely agree with your point, and I think you just made an excellent suggestion.

Beta 10d expired almost a year ago.
Installer 10d doesn't expire, but has had several builds.

After 11x and 12y and 13z come out, it's going to be really complicated for technical support.

A partial discussion (which you commented had no point to it) is at:

https://www.feldoncentral.com/forums...ead.php?t=5198

And you also know that people who purchased and installed 10d (or previous versions, for that matter) will not be automatically notified when there is a new "installer" version.

Ralph 06-02-2010 07:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dale (Post 122191)
This suggests that perhaps there should be a way to (at least) tell whether someone is running Beta or "Production".

There already is. A beta displays the stats by default and will expire; a production version does not display the stats by default..... except for a few recent betas that Jim posted. (and those have expired)

JohnWho 06-02-2010 08:12 PM

In any case, doesn't the information show in the Statistics display?

The installer version of "beta 10d" shows that, doesn't it?

Ralph 06-02-2010 08:20 PM

That... goes back to the naming convention.. that Jim said he would change with the next stable production. Up to now.... ALL versions were labeled as BETA (which evidently bothered a lot of people) but PRODUCTION versions had the statistics off by default and do not expire...

Dale 06-02-2010 08:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JohnWho (Post 122208)
In any case, doesn't the information show in the Statistics display?

The installer version of "beta 10d" shows that, doesn't it?

The installer version with a file date of Friday, ‎June ‎05, ‎2009, ‏‎6:51:31 PM, when the S key is pressed, shows Beta10d.

I just tested that with an install on a machine that had never before had MA on it.

Footnote: the appdata folder has the two .lst files, plus the CanonGuitar.sgt file.

JohnWho 06-02-2010 08:56 PM

Ah ha - then maybe that's where I got the CanonGuitar.sgt file, too.

I thought I remembered as much from the "beta10d" install.

Dale 06-02-2010 09:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JohnWho (Post 122213)
Ah ha - then maybe that's where I got the CanonGuitar.sgt file, too.

I thought I remembered as much from the "beta10d" install.

Evidence suggests that maybe the installer put the file there. It's a bit difficult to tell from the file times, because the installer starts the preview automatically. But I went in and deleted the .sgt file, and started MA3 from the desktop icon, and the file was not created.

Of course, maybe I should have started MA3 in preview mode, to see if that was different. Or maybe deleted MA3Playlist.lst first. It's really tough to test all of the "boundary conditions".

feldon34 06-03-2010 12:22 AM

Version 10D is from SereneScreen.com and is the installer version so it doesn't have the Stats display. But it's sad how many tens of thousands of users will be running version 10D for many years to come, frustrated at missing features and bugs in the music playlist, etc.

JohnWho 06-03-2010 07:45 AM

Hopefully, press releases regarding the "new 3.1", new write-ups on Serenescreen.com and Prolific's main site, a new description on CNet & download.com, reviews on MA3.1, updates on all of the "free demo" download sites, PC User Group newsletters, etc. will help get the word out.

I did not know that the "installer version" of MA3 does not have the "S hotkey" statistics display. Does it not allow the up and down arrows to change the Sleep function, either?

Dale 06-03-2010 08:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by feldon34 (Post 122224)
Version 10D is from SereneScreen.com and is the installer version so it doesn't have the Stats display.

(For JohnWho) I'm sure you meant that the Stats display is not on at startup - but can be turned on with the S key.

Quote:

Originally Posted by feldon34 (Post 122224)
But it's sad how many tens of thousands of users will be running version 10D for many years to come, frustrated at missing features and bugs in the music playlist, etc.

As you know, Jim has totally outlawed any means of automatically notifying purchasers that a new version is available.

And the company with the "boxed version" will just not have any updates at all.

Jim Sachs 06-03-2010 09:41 AM

Prolific has done mass-mailings in the past. Some people report it as spam, despite the fact that they checkmarked a box indicating that they wanted to be notified of updates. It only takes a couple of complaints to get branded as a spammer by Yahoo and others, and it's nearly impossible to get off the list. Very discouraging.

Dale 06-03-2010 09:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jim Sachs (Post 122232)
Prolific has done mass-mailings in the past. Some people report it as spam, despite the fact that they checkmarked a box indicating that they wanted to be notified of updates. It only takes a couple of complaints to get branded as a spammer by Yahoo and others, and it's nearly impossible to get off the list. Very discouraging.

For those who have joined the forum recently, I'll also point out that you won't implement a feature in MA3 that automatically checks for updates.

Jim Sachs 06-03-2010 09:59 AM

Nope, no spyware. It makes me very nervous when I see Internet activity that I did not initialize.

JohnWho 06-03-2010 11:17 AM

While I understand Dale's statements, I agree with Jim Sachs' view that anything that "phones home" or seems like Spam will be labeled as such by someone.

On the other hand, a "check for updates" button on the main Settings Menu might not be such a bad thing since it does require user intervention and does nothing "behind the scenes" unbeknownst to the user.


@ Dale -

Yeah, that's what I thought regarding 10d and the stats display.

Dale 06-03-2010 11:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JohnWho (Post 122238)
While I understand Dale's statements,....

I wasn't criticizing/agreeing/disagreeing. I was just responding to Morgan's comment;

Quote:

Originally Posted by feldon34 (Post 122224)
But it's sad how many tens of thousands of users will be running version 10D for many years to come, frustrated at missing features and bugs in the music playlist, etc.

...
by pointing out that Jim had already determined, quite some time ago, that there won't be a fix. (Jim has now explained his reasoning, and that is appreciated, but wasn't necessary).

Somewhere back in the forum history, I expressed my opinions about this, and it's now a settled issue.

JohnWho 06-03-2010 11:49 AM

Perhaps, but I'd like to change my above statement from

On the other hand, a "check for updates" button on the main Settings Menu might not be such a bad thing ...

to

I strongly recommend a "check for updates" button (maybe in the "About" screen?). At the very least it would be a web link that takes folks to a web page where they can check to see if they have the current version and read about the probable improvements to the next upcoming version.

This wouldn't require any sort of "phone home" coding at all since all it would be would be a web link similar to the "Visit Website" link that is already there. Heck, maybe that link could simply have its description change to say "Visit Website to Check for Updates"?

Perhaps a link to the appropriate SereneScreen page, once it is updated with the new 3.1 information?

feldon34 06-03-2010 12:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dale (Post 122230)
As you know, Jim has totally outlawed any means of automatically notifying purchasers that a new version is available.

Marine Aquarium is full of firsts. First piece of software released in 2010 which does not check for updates.

Jim Sachs 06-03-2010 12:57 PM

JohnWho - I don't understand why you can't just click on the "Visit Website" button on the main Programs Settings box.

JohnWho 06-03-2010 01:45 PM

Jim -

I'm not being argumentative here, just making a suggestion.

I can click on the "Visit Website" link, in fact, I have.

However, we are talking about the millions of folks who will download MA3.1 and MA4.0 and MA5.0, ... Having a reminder to check for updates just may get many of them to pay for the next "for fee" upgrade.

This is certainly not something that matters that much to me since none of the potential revenue will end up in my bank account.

Just seems like a possibility that might make sense as part of the 3.1 release especially if it gets the widest possible dissemination and may reach many of the folks with earlier versions.

feldon34 06-03-2010 01:47 PM

Jim would rather stay within that ever exclusive group of programs which doesn't check for updates, than risk the slight chance that 1 customer might get upset.

Actually, I can't think of any programs I run on a daily basis that don't check for updates except the Aquarium.


I've answered 479 tech support e-mails in the last month. I'm such a slacker. ;)

I should be shocked at how many people are still running Marine Aquarium 1.0, 1.1, or Marine Aquarium Time 1, but...

Dale 06-03-2010 04:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jim Sachs (Post 122247)
JohnWho - I don't understand why you can't just click on the "Visit Website" button on the main Programs Settings box.

I don't know how to make this shorter - and you did ask. Perhaps you can skip the next few lines, and read "What's wrong with Visit Website" below.

One reasonable implementation of a "Check For Updates" button would be a dialog box that says:

You are running Version 3.0 and the latest version is 3.6. Would you like to update now?
[Yes] [No]


Or

You are running the latest version, 3.6
[Cancel]


================================================== ===

What's wrong with Visit Website?
The perceived problem with the "Visit Website" approach is that it's a multi-step process.

A. Remember what version you're now running. If you don't remember, then find out. That information is not available on the Settings panel, nor on the About panel. Only by pressing the "S" key. At the moment, that info is "Beta10d"

B. Visit Website. Read what it says: New 3.0 (Presumably in a bit it will say 3.1). Compare that with what the "S" key says (10d). [OK, that can be fixed, so let's assume the S key tells me I'm running 3.0 and the Website says 3.1)

C. Now, the Website has two choices to click on: Upgrade and Download.

C1. If I click on Upgrade, I'm probably told (in the future) "As a special offer, we are offering an upgrade to Marine Aquarium 3.6 for only $9.95.". But that's for people who bought a keycode from the website, or bought a CD. (OK, it should say upgrade from MA2.6 or something, let's assume that gets fixed and I do:

C2: Click on Download. At least 4 "rational" choices of things. Please take a look at this: http://www.serenescreen.com/product/
There's "free download" (which would be correct), and "BUY NOW, and Upgrade "free download", and Upgrade BUY NOW.

I'm betting that a lot of folks will take the wrong path, and buy something - or will get really confused, and just not bother with upgrading to the latest version.

All of the information about "current version" is presumably available within MA3. All of the information about "latest version", including the URL for the correct download, is presumably available somewhere (doesn't even have to be on the SereneScreen site). Making things easy and not confusing for customers is usually a good thing.

Jim, sorry this was so long. But you did ask.

Dale 06-03-2010 04:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by feldon34 (Post 122252)
Actually, I can't think of any programs I run on a daily basis that don't check for updates except the Aquarium.

I hope you'll pardon my moralizing for a moment. "Everybody is doing it" is almost never a good reason for "doing it".

If we can't convince Jim that it's the "right thing to do", then it isn't the right thing for Jim to do.

JohnWho 06-03-2010 04:34 PM

Agreed.

The only reason I suggested the "check for updates" link is that it is the least intrusive method, leaving it entirely up to the user, that might reap the biggest benefit in upgrades.

feldon34 06-04-2010 12:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dale (Post 122263)
I hope you'll pardon my moralizing for a moment. "Everybody is doing it" is almost never a good reason for "doing it".

Jim's original concern is, he didn't want to be accused of being "spyware". Since all major software sold today checks for updates, or at least makes the user aware of the point difference between their own version and the currently available version, this confusion is now unlikely.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dale (Post 122263)
If we can't convince Jim that it's the "right thing to do", then it isn't the right thing for Jim to do.

What's right, is to make it as easy as possible for customers to buy, use, and update the product, and do all of that without doing anything unethical. We just have a disagreement about what's ethical.

Sales of Marine Aquarium 3 are about 5% of Marine Aquarium 1. I don't think it's apathy.


I have no illusions that Jim will implement any ideas I present. After 9 years of trying, I don't expect him to start now. ;)


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