New channel version notification?

Roku's free SDK allows developers to build channels and applications and publish them to the Roku Channel Store. Register for the Developer Program at http://www.roku.com/developer

Moderators: RokuDouglas, RokuRyan, RokuJamesL, RokuKen, RokuChris, RokuJoel

New channel version notification?

Postby kbenson » Wed Feb 02, 2011 10:29 pm

Is there any sort of notification to users when a channel updates to a new version? It seems like some way to indicate a channel has been updated and what's new would be useful for users and developers.

At this point I guess we could include a new channel image with a graphic stating it was updated, and then update again later to remove that graphic, but that's a lot of busy work on our part setting it up and on Roku's part reviewing the channels.

While some sort of change log would be nice, minimally just some indication on the main channel screen that a channel was recently updated would be sufficient. E.g. If submission date within 7 days of current date, show visual indication it was updated, etc.
-- GandK Labs
Check out Reversi! in the channel store!
kbenson
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:53 am
Location: Santa Rosa, Ca

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby TheEndless » Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:00 pm

For my channels, I save the current version to the registry. That way, the first time an update is launched, I can compare the stored version with the current version and present the user with a dialog indicating what has been updated if they don't match.
My Channels: http://roku.permanence.com - Twitter: @TheEndlessDev
Instant Watch Browser (NetflixIWB), Aquarium Screensaver (AQUARIUM), MainSqueeze (MAINSQUEEZE), iTunes Podcasts (ITPC), Justin.tv (JUSTINTV), My Channels (MYCHANNELS)
User avatar
TheEndless
** Valued Community Member **
 
Posts: 7971
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 10:15 am
Location: US

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby kbenson » Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:32 pm

TheEndless wrote:For my channels, I save the current version to the registry. That way, the first time an update is launched, I can compare the stored version with the current version and present the user with a dialog indicating what has been updated if they don't match.


Yeah, I understand that's possible, but I'm really referring to the home screen, before they've decided to look into the channel. It's less of an issue for a media channel where the content is constantly updating, as the user is already conditioned to the fact that the content will be changing often and look occasionally.

Our situation may be a good example: We are updating Reversi! to have a new feature (definable board size) and a harder max difficulty level. Without a way to indicate there are new features, someone who decided they were bored with the current difficulty/features may take quite a while to check back in on it. I would rather customers feel they got a good deal for their money, and that the game/channel is actively being worked on.
-- GandK Labs
Check out Reversi! in the channel store!
kbenson
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:53 am
Location: Santa Rosa, Ca

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby TheEndless » Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:38 pm

Gotcha. You know, they use to push channels that had been updated to the front of the list, but that seemed to go away with the new channel store. I wonder if they could add a "Recently Updated" category to complement the "New" category.
My Channels: http://roku.permanence.com - Twitter: @TheEndlessDev
Instant Watch Browser (NetflixIWB), Aquarium Screensaver (AQUARIUM), MainSqueeze (MAINSQUEEZE), iTunes Podcasts (ITPC), Justin.tv (JUSTINTV), My Channels (MYCHANNELS)
User avatar
TheEndless
** Valued Community Member **
 
Posts: 7971
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 10:15 am
Location: US

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby kbenson » Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:43 pm

TheEndless wrote:Gotcha. You know, they use to push channels that had been updated to the front of the list, but that seemed to go away with the new channel store. I wonder if they could add a "Recently Updated" category to complement the "New" category.


Yeah, I think the old channel store actually had a sorting category for most recently updated, but I can't recall. This would address some of the issues at a minimal level, and theoretically not be very hard for Roku to implement. Good suggestion!
-- GandK Labs
Check out Reversi! in the channel store!
kbenson
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:53 am
Location: Santa Rosa, Ca

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby jbrave » Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:30 am

Yeah, it would really be nice if underneath the "New" section, there was a "recently updated" section. This could be kept from being too chatty by only listing channels that had significant changes, of course that would be up to the folks at Roku to decide. Right now, if you have a major upgrade, nobody will know about it except people who already have it installed.

- Joel
Screenshades: The first Screensaver for Roku2!
Musiclouds: The best free internet music, on your Roku!
Ouroborialis: Psychedelic Screensaver for Roku!
jbrave
 
Posts: 716
Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2010 3:00 pm
Location: Ben Lomond, CA

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby kbenson » Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:24 am

jbrave wrote:Yeah, it would really be nice if underneath the "New" section, there was a "recently updated" section. This could be kept from being too chatty by only listing channels that had significant changes, of course that would be up to the folks at Roku to decide. Right now, if you have a major upgrade, nobody will know about it except people who already have it installed.


Well, it starts getting into the realm of not being as easy to implement anymore, but a box on channel submission for entering the list of (publicly viewable) changes could then be used to trigger whether it shows up in the recently updated section. Leave the change log box empty, no recently update listing. Enter something in it, show it in recently updated, preferably along with the list of changes. Although at that point it will probably take a while to get implemented, and they might as well just take their time and do it right then.

Right now I would be happy with a recently updated section in the channel store that just lists the last X recently updated by submission or Roku acceptance date, with the assumption it would be easy/quick for Roku to implement and would provide at least some out-of-channel information that a channel has changed.
-- GandK Labs
Check out Reversi! in the channel store!
kbenson
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:53 am
Location: Santa Rosa, Ca

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby jbrave » Thu Feb 03, 2011 4:25 pm

Yeah Kbenson, I basically agree on this. Since they only update once a week anyway, this would be absolutely fine.

- Joel
Screenshades: The first Screensaver for Roku2!
Musiclouds: The best free internet music, on your Roku!
Ouroborialis: Psychedelic Screensaver for Roku!
jbrave
 
Posts: 716
Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2010 3:00 pm
Location: Ben Lomond, CA

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby EnTerr » Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:52 am

I don't see the point of such notification and it will also be an easy target for abuse. Somebody can bump the version every day (or week, as often as that registers) and submit the app as "new" thus staying featured perennially in the "Recently updated" list.

It goes cross with the idea of a "channel" too. A channel imho specializing in delivering a multimedia experience of some sort (be it films, music or a game). If it changes its contents radially, that would be another channel, so publish it separately. If it aggregates say multiple games, get a regular schedule for publishing said new sub-game (once a week or month) and your users will come for it. You can notify your users "in situ" (when the channel is started, the idea by TheEndless) or out-of-band by any means you made the users opt-in to be bugged about updates (email etc when registering on your site).

And i personally will be unhappy if my Roku start showing some blinking or jumping or highlighting of some channel icons because it has to download new versions of them. Part of the elegance of Roku player is that it behaves like a home appliance and "simply works" (unlike say a Sony Blu-ray player that will jump on me every time i turn it on "i found new update! new firmware, i want you to update me mom, can we do that please please please!"
EnTerr
 
Posts: 1039
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2011 2:41 am

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby TheEndless » Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:25 am

EnTerr wrote:I don't see the point of such notification and it will also be an easy target for abuse. Somebody can bump the version every day (or week, as often as that registers) and submit the app as "new" thus staying featured perennially in the "Recently updated" list.

Public channels and their updates have to be approved by Roku, so I don't think there's a danger of someone abusing the update process.

I think there's great utility in a row in the channel store that indicates what channels have been recently updated. We're not talking about flashing lights and sirens, just another row next to the "New" row. There may be a channel I tried out awhile back, but decided for whatever reason wasn't quite useful enough to clutter my channel list. Or maybe a game that I completed and uninstalled. If I have no way of knowing it's been updated, then I may be missing out on some exciting new features and/or new levels. In-channel notification is only useful for channels I already have installed and regularly use, which I'll automatically get the updates for anyway.
My Channels: http://roku.permanence.com - Twitter: @TheEndlessDev
Instant Watch Browser (NetflixIWB), Aquarium Screensaver (AQUARIUM), MainSqueeze (MAINSQUEEZE), iTunes Podcasts (ITPC), Justin.tv (JUSTINTV), My Channels (MYCHANNELS)
User avatar
TheEndless
** Valued Community Member **
 
Posts: 7971
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 10:15 am
Location: US

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby EnTerr » Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:22 pm

TheEndless wrote:
EnTerr wrote:I don't see the point of such notification and it will also be an easy target for abuse. Somebody can bump the version every day (or week, as often as that registers) and submit the app as "new" thus staying featured perennially in the "Recently updated" list.

Public channels and their updates have to be approved by Roku, so I don't think there's a danger of someone abusing the update process.


So Roku will have to define an objective criteria of what makes an app "new", which is impossible. Does change of the icon or font constitute new? Reformatting of the source? Adding a new content inside (which you may or not do by updating your feed but still looks like "updated channel" to the users)?

And since there could not be objective criteria, it will be subjective. There will be undue pressure to push channel "renovations" just to be featured in this way. Roku will have to hire people to review and try to adjudicate if channel is "new-worthy" or not. Judgement will cause bad blood between Roku and some developers, because as i said, there is no objective way for all sides to see the same.

And i still fail to see how an update to a channel makes it noteworthy. Most updates are not worthy of attention, the need of some we in fact don't want to point out. Say there were silly misspellings in some of my text labels and I fixed them - should I tout that? Don't want people to abandon your app - DIRFT (Do It Right the First Time) :)

And speaking of Roku judging what is worthy and what not... oh wait, they DO have that already, it is called "Featured" category. Someone thinks they've made major upgrade to a channel that changes the world - eh, just email Roku and persuade them to feature you.

ps. corrected DRIFT -> DIRFT
Last edited by EnTerr on Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
EnTerr
 
Posts: 1039
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2011 2:41 am

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby SuetyStanes » Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:32 pm

EnTerr wrote:
TheEndless wrote:
EnTerr wrote:I don't see the point of such notification and it will also be an easy target for abuse. Somebody can bump the version every day (or week, as often as that registers) and submit the app as "new" thus staying featured perennially in the "Recently updated" list.

Public channels and their updates have to be approved by Roku, so I don't think there's a danger of someone abusing the update process.


So Roku will have to define an objective criteria of what makes an app "new", which is impossible. Does change of the icon or font constitute new? Reformatting of the source? Adding a new content inside (which you may or not do by updating your feed but still looks like "updated channel" to the users)?

And since there could not be objective criteria, it will be subjective. There will be undue pressure to push channel "renovations" just to be featured in this way. Roku will have to hire people to review and try to adjudicate if channel is "new-worthy" or not. Judgement will cause bad blood between Roku and some developers, because as i said, there is no objective way for all sides to see the same.

And i still fail to see how an update to a channel makes it noteworthy. Most updates are not worthy of attention, the need of some we in fact don't want to point out. Say there were silly misspellings in some of my text labels and I fixed them - should I tout that? Don't want people to abandon your app - DRIFT (Do It Right the First Time) :)

And speaking of Roku judging what is worthy and what not... oh wait, they DO have that already, it is called "Featured" category. Someone thinks they've made major upgrade to a channel that changes the world - eh, just email Roku and persuade them to feature you.


I don't think a Recently Updated category would promote any channel; I'm still able to find all of the available channels. And if I were subscribed to a channel that, abusively, seemed to show up in that category all the time, I would start to ignore it and probably get annoyed with the developer.
SuetyStanes
 
Posts: 651
Joined: Thu Sep 09, 2010 7:41 am

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby TheEndless » Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:35 pm

EnTerr wrote:DRIFT (Do It Right the First Time)

I think that would be DIRFT, which I think might be the number between 5 and 6 (that may be an obscure reference, unless you're a parent)... :p

And I think it'd be pretty easy for Roku to objectively state that you're only allowed one update per x many days, unless it's a critical bug fix. And again, we're not talking about being featured.. we're talking about having some indication that the channel has been updated.. for the end user's benefit, not the developer's. If a developer starts abusing that, I think it'd be pretty obvious, and something Roku could prevent.

I guess I just don't understand your opposition to it. You seem to be convinced that such a feature would be abused, and are focusing on that rather than the utility. Heck, they could even put the row at the very bottom of the channel store for all I care. I'd just like the ability to easily check to see what channels have been recently updated.
My Channels: http://roku.permanence.com - Twitter: @TheEndlessDev
Instant Watch Browser (NetflixIWB), Aquarium Screensaver (AQUARIUM), MainSqueeze (MAINSQUEEZE), iTunes Podcasts (ITPC), Justin.tv (JUSTINTV), My Channels (MYCHANNELS)
User avatar
TheEndless
** Valued Community Member **
 
Posts: 7971
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 10:15 am
Location: US

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby kbenson » Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:01 pm

EnTerr wrote:So Roku will have to define an objective criteria of what makes an app "new", which is impossible. Does change of the icon or font constitute new? Reformatting of the source? Adding a new content inside (which you may or not do by updating your feed but still looks like "updated channel" to the users)?

And since there could not be objective criteria, it will be subjective. There will be undue pressure to push channel "renovations" just to be featured in this way. Roku will have to hire people to review and try to adjudicate if channel is "new-worthy" or not. Judgement will cause bad blood between Roku and some developers, because as i said, there is no objective way for all sides to see the same.


I think it's a bit simpler than that. If the app has been updated, it goes in the recently updated list, sorted by the release date of that version. Since Roku has to review these all anyways, if someone is constantly on the list for small changes, Roku will probably get annoying, and find a way to make their annoyance known. That could be as simple as delaying review and publication of the channel for a week or two, to dissuade too-frequent updates and reduce load on Roku reviewing process.

This might need to change or be removed at a later date if the number of updated channels grows too large, but I don't think that's a major concern currently.
-- GandK Labs
Check out Reversi! in the channel store!
kbenson
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:53 am
Location: Santa Rosa, Ca

Re: New channel version notification?

Postby EnTerr » Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:49 pm

kbenson wrote:I think it's a bit simpler than that. If the app has been updated, it goes in the recently updated list, sorted by the release date of that version. Since Roku has to review these all anyways, if someone is constantly on the list for small changes, Roku will probably get annoying, and find a way to make their annoyance known. That could be as simple as delaying review and publication of the channel for a week or two, to dissuade too-frequent updates and reduce load on Roku reviewing process. This might need to change or be removed at a later date if the number of updated channels grows too large, but I don't think that's a major concern currently.


We heard what is the use to "you", the developer - but what is the use of such category ("newified") to "me", the end user?

The argument was that this was supposed to inform users that already have the channel it has been updated. Ok, so there are a bit under 100 public channels there and as a user I have 10-20 channels installed, more than half of which private. So only the public, only ~10/100 = 10% of the channels that be listed under "Freshly updated" are of relevance to a particular user and considering only 4 are show on screen at a time, one will have intentionally to scroll screens to find relevant to them channel, that defeats the purpose.

And if your channel is private, you are totally out of luck - it will never show up in that section.

So how is this useful to the viewers?!
EnTerr
 
Posts: 1039
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2011 2:41 am

Next

Return to Roku Developer Program

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests