Make living music albums. Make movies that don’t always end the same way.
The multi-version media format is a simple, cross-platform package file format that allows developers to write audio/video applications in which the media being played (eg a song or movie) can be a different version with each play. See the Amber G. App (iOS only) for the first such player (for which I developed the format 🙂 ).
Each media file (e.g. an MP3, M4A, MP4 or MOV file) is replaced by a specially-formatted directory containing multiple versions of the same piece of media (eg multiple live versions of a song, versions of a movie with alternate endings or extended scenes).
Example for the song “Alive” by Amber Griis:
Alive live drums.m4a
Alive crazy rock drummer.mp3
This file contains a specially-formatted JSON object that describes the contents of the directory.
This file sits at the root level of the directory in which your .mvm folders sit and simply contains a list (an array), in the order in which they should appear in a playlist, of the names of the folders in your player.
[ "Alive", "Fly", "Be In Love" ]
Note that this means your folder names must match what you want displayed. This is intentional to provide simplicity by convention.
I like reading release notes, as I’ve mentioned before, because I like to know what’s been updated. Some app developers have decided to include “we update our app regularly”, as though that’s informative. So, here’s my simple process for when I see that:
Do I really really need the app?
Leave 1-star review stating app/service is great, but no release notes.
Email support, ask what’s new in the latest version, e.g.:
I was really curious to see what’s been updated for iOS 10, in particular if there’s Siri integration. The release notes said “We update the app as often as possible to make it faster and more reliable for you…”, which is the same thing it’s said since June 27.So, what are the new features? Does Uber work with Siri yet?
I read app release notes because I like to see what an app’s capable of doing. I’ve noticed that some apps have gotten lazy recently and just put something like “we update our app regularly”. When I see that, if I’m not actively using the app, I delete it. If I am actively using the app (I’m looking at you, Dropbox and Facebook), I try to think of other apps I could use instead (e.g. OneDrive, Google Drive, and heck, “nothing” sounds like a good Facebook replacement). See, I feel insulted that they want to just shove new code over my Internet connection onto my device when their changes aren’t even important enough to include in a text file they push to iTunes Connect. So, developers, if your release process is so agile that you release updates regularly, then track what you’re releasing and add it to the notes. Otherwise, I think your release process is crap and I’ll delete your app to keep said crap off my devices.
Update 7/6/16: The Dropbox app is currently rated 2 of 5 stars in the App Store, despite being a great sync service and listed in The App Store’s “essentials” list. Why? No release notes.
Oh, and I did delete Facebook (I highly recommend doing so), and switched from Dropbox to iCloud Drive.