I don’t usually notice music managers, mostly because I resent applications that “manage” things for me. That goes for music, photos or whatever you like.
On the other hand, I’m constantly on the lookout for applications that run light and fast, and at the same time, are “under the radar,” as some of my American friends sometimes say.
Anything FLTK-based or FOX-based usually qualifies. I regularly tinker with XFE and its subapplications, or Dillo in it’s current (and amazing) state. I can add Goggles Music Manager to that list now. But those toolkits are rather low-key, and the applications that use them can sometimes slip by unnoticed.
Occasionally a thread pops up in the Arch Forums mentioning Goggles, with about the frequency of Consonance. Much like that program, Goggles imports lists of files and keeps a database, then gives you a way of sifting through them to play the tunes you want.
In that sense, Goggles (and Consonance, since I mentioned it) is nothing new. What Goggles (and Consonance, since I mentioned it) offers is that manner of music playback at a speed that’s hard to ignore. And since it relies on the FOX toolkit and only a few other libraries, anything that can run a graphical desktop can probably add a wee bit more and get a very solid, very clean interface for playback.
Goggles has a miniature interface (called the Mini Player, which makes sense ) you can push around the screen. It has an equalizer with presets that might match your musical taste. It will show album covers both in the list and when playing. It has nice big buttons to punch for music control, a slider for seeking and a time display alongside a volume control. In other words, all the basics.
But it will also sink to a system tray icon. It has a sleep timer. It will stream music from the Internet (but I admit I didn’t try that). It will arrange and display music as you prefer, make playlists, sync directory changes and a whole bunch of other fun stuff. If you have to have a music manager and it has to be light, this is the one I would submit for your consideration.
Personally, I find it intriguing, but not particularly attractive. On the one hand I appreciate its exceedingly lightweightedness (is that a word?) but … I can’t help it: I don’t dig music managers. It must be part of my DNA. Just about everyone else I know has to have that three-pane iTunes look before they can press “play;” for me, I find it a turnoff.
But it’s hard to snub it when it’s so light and so comprehensive. If I’m the only person who finds it attractive, and yet unattractive both at the same time, I’ll be satisfied with that.
P.S.: If you want to get started with Goggles, the Arch package is called “musicmanager,” and once it’s installed you can start the application with
gmm. It took me a little while to find the thing, and another little while to get it started.