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Explain it to me: TiVo/DirecTV easier to use...

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by Earl Bonovich, Oct 8, 2007.

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  1. Oct 9, 2007 #121 of 302
    Drew2k

    Drew2k New Member

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    See my post above ...

    But what's the alternative? Add "Scheduler" to the top level menu? The top level menu will grow to be unusable ...
     
  2. Oct 9, 2007 #122 of 302
    kmill14

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    Typically, when I am in a menu "doing stuff", and am not concentrating on "watching stuff". While Tivo's UI is not perfect, it does lean towards those that want it to be less complex. You can still do plenty with a Tivo interface without all the complicated menus.
     
  3. Oct 9, 2007 #123 of 302
    kmill14

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    I'm not at my TV...what is the complete list of items in the top level menu?

    IF you want my vote, Scheduler should be one of those items.
     
  4. Oct 9, 2007 #124 of 302
    houskamp

    houskamp Active Member

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    How about this for an idea?
    add 2 tabs to list.. one for todo and one for prioritizer..
    This would put them right in sight and easy to access...
     
  5. Oct 9, 2007 #125 of 302
    raott

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    Earl asked for things that make Tivo easier to used. IMO, that is something that can be changed. I gave my opinion, I wasn't looking for a debate on the issue or to be told why I'm misguided by thinking its not intuitive.
     
  6. Oct 9, 2007 #126 of 302
    Drew2k

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    That varies, because DIRECTV designed the top-level menu to be context sensitive, so it changes according to the feature in use, whether it's the guide, playlist, search screen, or live TV or a recording.

    Unfortunately, I think we may be getting too far off-topic ...
     
  7. Oct 9, 2007 #127 of 302
    Earl Bonovich

    Earl Bonovich Lifetime Achiever

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    Correct...

    I don't want to drag the thread down, by too much debate on people's reasoning....

    Or "theroies" on how to make one better then the other...

    So please... continue with explaining to "me" why one is easier to use then the other.
     
  8. Oct 9, 2007 #128 of 302
    Drew2k

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    Good idea, but the prioritizer is different from the To Do list ... so you'd be up to 4 tabs.
     
  9. Oct 9, 2007 #129 of 302
    cartrivision

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    I hate to break it to you, but a properly designed UI doesn't require a user manual AND it doesn’t require cluttered screens to explain everything either. That and other basic UI design concepts and principals are things that you (somewhat understandably) and the DirecTV UI designers (inexcusably) don't comprehend.

    DirecTV’s lack of qualified design engineers to oversee the design of the UI for their equipment is a huge blunder. The UI is part of their “advertising” that sells their service to the public. If it was correctly designed by people who are well qualified and educated in the science and art of proper UI design instead of the hit and miss approach that they get by having UI design decisions made by engineers completely unqualified to do so, the “advertising” value of a superior interface would far outweigh the cost of hiring the superior engineering talent required to achieve a superior interface.
     
  10. Oct 9, 2007 #130 of 302
    Thaedron

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    Drew, I agree that not everything can be a top level menu. But on a DVR, I think 'Scheduler' is probably worthy of making the cut.
     
  11. Oct 9, 2007 #131 of 302
    Paznos

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    Well so far I miss my TiVo since it actually worked, since I got the HR20-100 a couple of weeks ago things that should be on my to do list aren't, and series that I've set up for a series link worked the first week but now they won't record unless I do it manually.

    Sigh :mad:
     
  12. Oct 9, 2007 #132 of 302
    Thaedron

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    Earl, I have learned some important points simply from reading this thread. I don't know how Comcast or other DVRs work, but I will say that the context sensitive menus on the HR20 are a challenge to overcome in the learning curve if coming from Tivo. Better explaining or highlighting that point would be something that would make the HR20 easier to use (for me at least). Perhaps our 'tivo survival guide to the HR20' should be ammended to draw more attention to this item.
     
  13. Oct 9, 2007 #133 of 302
    markman07

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    +1 ..OH HELL +2 ...well put.
     
  14. Oct 9, 2007 #134 of 302
    Thaedron

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    Earl, all due respect, but the recording defaults are something that I should be able to run across as I traverse the help and settings menu as I am exploring the system after the installer is backing out of the driveway. That's one thing that would make the HR20 easier to use.
     
  15. Oct 9, 2007 #135 of 302
    Halo

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    One issue that hasn't yet been mentioned (amazingly):

    FRAME ADVANCE/ FRAME REVERSE is still broken !
    This is a primary trick play feature that was correctly implemented on the UTV, Tivo and even the R15. It continues to be an utterly useless feature on the HR20.

    I watch quite a bit of sports and many of the plays need to be seen one frame at a time. For instance, the instant the ball carrier loses a fumble, or the instant the first baseman touches the bag.

    Normally I would use FRAME ADVANCE (pause,fast forward) to advance each frame and then to see the play again you go (pause, rewind) to back up frame by frame. This works great on the other systems, but on the HR20 the FRAME REVERSE (pause,rewind) will jump back 60 FRAMES (or sometimes just 15 frames) back instead of 1 single frame like with the UTV, Tivo or R15.

    So, after jumping back 60 frames (2 full seconds) I would have to press FRAME ADVANCE (pause,fast forward) 60 times to get back to the play in question!
    Are you kidding me?

    Please record the HDnet test channel with the clock on screen to test this out. The FRAME REVERSE function is even worse with mpeg-4 channels because it actually jumps forward before it jumps back 2 seconds.
     
  16. Oct 9, 2007 #136 of 302
    jaywdetroit

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    I am going to try and respond to your question without reading too much of this thread. So if i repeat what others say- so sorry!

    For TIVO:

    I think there really is some credibility to saying the Tivo "just is" easier to use. I think the reason this statement is valid is because it takes little thought to get the Tivo to do what you want it to do. A few button presses, and you can find whatever it is you are looking for - whether or not you even know you are looking for it.

    The HR20, while more feature rich, and much (thank god) faster, takes a bit more thought to figure out where you are going. This goes especially for newbie's but even now for me, after more than a year, I still find myself trying to remember, or figure out how to do something.

    I prefer the TIVO guide as well. Where I can select one channel and see all the shows in the near future on the right. I like that the feature is there on the HR20 (press info on channel and you get a list) but it is klunky and slow.

    For HR20

    Now when it comes to setting up a season pass on the other hand, I LOVE the HR20. It was a brilliant idea that all I have to do is hit record twice. But again, thats something you have to "know". Its not something that just makes sense. The first time I pick up an HR20 remote there is no reason I should think to hit record twice to get a season pass. But once I do know it, it rocks!

    I like the quick filtering feature on the guide, though all I use it for is HD. And I like how responsive D* has been to improving the UI based on feedback. But it still needs work.

    I do really like the PIG feature on the HR20 as well. Thats big over the TIVO UI.

    Which one?

    If Tivo figures out how to make trick play with MPEG 4 as good as it is on their SA units, then the TIVO is going to have some even bigger advantages over the HR20. As far as the over all UI - I prefer the TIVO layout, but really like some of the HR20 features in the UI.

    As for overall features. Well DLB is huge for me, suggestions, wishlists, etc. Tivo is just better on that front. The question becomes are those features more important than HD? (no) VOD? (perhaps-probably not) Music and photos? (if they worked on the HR20 - i would care.) If I get a DirecTivo with HomeMedia...

    What it comes down too...

    D* and Tivo should sit down and take all the best features of the HR20 and insert them into a new improved (FASTER) Tivo OS. (if they don't improve the speed, forget it - I'll keep the hr20.)

    -They can use the color scheme from the HR20 to make it look more like a D* OS.
    -Use the PIG.
    -Add VOD, HomeMedia
    -Add two touch Season Pass setup.

    A marriage of the two would be perfect.
     
  17. Oct 9, 2007 #137 of 302
    Earl Bonovich

    Earl Bonovich Lifetime Achiever

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    Why? How often do you change your defaults?

    Again... maybe they just need to redo the manual... with the top 10 things to first do when you activate your receiver: (Setup your display, Setup your Audio options, Setup your Default record settings)...
     
  18. Oct 9, 2007 #138 of 302
    cartrivision

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    I'm sorry, but UI design is a science that requires a formal education in the "theories" of that science, so the way to "make it better" is for D* to start by hiring a person to oversee the design as a whole who actually has the education, experience, and qualifications to hold that position. The reason that the HR20 interface is not easier to use than some others is that the UI design decisions have clearly not been made by people qualified to be making such decisions.

    Listing every little thing that the current design team has done wrong (like having basic settings screens that nobody would ever find without reading the manual) will accomplish little or nothing without D* first hiring qualified engineers who are educated in UI design theory, especially when you have people here (equally ignorant about proper UI design) responding by chiming in with defenses and denials of the basic design blunders that are pointed out.
     
  19. Oct 9, 2007 #139 of 302
    kmill14

    kmill14 Godfather

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    I don't think this is off topic at all. I am (as I see others are too) not totally understanding what can and cannot be done with the HR-20, and that in itself is an issue very relevant to this topic.

    Imagine if Earl had not started this topic...we wouldn't know how to change the default settings for recordings. And how many people on here are glued to this board and fanatic about their DVR and TV watching??? Crazy!

    While Tivo's interface did have some "hidden" items, traversing the menus was not an exercise in memory skills. "Now where is THAT screen again?"

    Like I said earlier, I don't use the yellow, red, green or blue buttons very often because I use a Harmony remote. The programmable buttons on top of the remote are my least used buttons, and the colored buttons are on a seperate menu all together. Those things just make it too complicated for normal viewing habits. (in my humble opinion)
     
  20. Oct 9, 2007 #140 of 302
    Earl Bonovich

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    So everyone's "theories" of the science/art of UI design match?
    And you know for a fact that they don't have such people on their staff?
     
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