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On 20 sep 2010, chefkoch suggested that this page or content is incomplete and needs to be expanded or rewritten,

The biggest problem with PC remote control applications is the configuration process. They generally fall into one of two categories. The first category is the “easy to setup but inflexible” category, and the second is the “difficult to setup but highly flexible” category.

Case in point: ByRemote HIP vs Promixis Girder.

HIP is easy to setup without any prior knowledge, but HIP is not as feature rich or flexible as Girder. Don't get me wrong here, it's a fantastic program which I highly recommend, but it's not as feature rich as Girder.

Girder on the other hand is very difficult to setup compared to HIP, it has a steep learning curve, but is feature rich and flexible.

This document does not seek to make a value judgement on either application. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

One of the goals in software development is to produce software that "just works". Software that is easy to use but also powerful enough to be adapted different situations.

For PC Remote Control software one solution to the traditional trade-off between usability and flexibility is the subject of this document, the Abstract Remote Model.

By agreeing on the most common remote buttons and including a collection of mappings to make all the supported remotes fit the common model we can provide a default configuration that will work on all supported remotes with no setup required. Default configurations would be supplied for a large number of common PC applications, as well as general OS navigation and use.

The drawback with other simplified systems of this nature is that you lose the flexibility to define different buttons and functions outside the simplified model, but with the Abstract Remote Model proposed any remote button that is not mapped onto the abstract model will be passed on in it’s raw form, thereby enabling the user to customize beyond the default configuration.

What follows is the Abstract Remote Model button list as of Version 0.1 of the Abstract Remote Model.

Abstract Button Name

Brief description

Explanation

Up

Up Arrow

A feature of almost all PC remote controls, the arrow buttons are generally used to control the on screen cursor or item selection.

Down

Down Arrow

 

Left

Left Arrow

 

Right

Right Arrow

 

OK

OK / Select

Used to make a selection.

VolumeUp

Increase Volume

Increase the system or application volume.

VolumeDown

Decrease Volume

Decrease the system or application volume.

ChannelUp

Channel Up

In TV systems this button is used to increment the channel.

ChannelDown

Channel Down

In TV systems this button is used to decrement the channel.

PreviousChannel

Return to the Previous Channel

In TV systems this button is used to go back to the last channel.

Start

Start / Home / Go

This button may appear under many labels, in MCE convention it is referred to as the Start button and is used to launch a common application or while in that application it is also used to return to the main menu or home screen.

Back

Back

Often mapped as the keyboard Escape key, this buttons most common function is to leave a menu or abort an operation or selection.

Info

Info / More

 

Mute

Mute Volume

Mute either the system or application volume.

Number0

0

Numbers from 0 through to 9 are used as either simple numerical text input, as channel number entry, or as an “sms-style” alpha-numeric text entry system.

Number1

1

 

Number2

2

 

Number3

3

 

Number4

4

 

Number5

5

 

Number6

6

 

Number7

7

 

Number8

8

 

Number9

9

 

Play

Play

Used to commence playback.

Pause

Pause

Used to pause playback.

PlayPause

Play / Pause

Many remotes will combine play and the pause functions into one button that pauses when playback is already running and commences playback when it is not.

Stop

Stop

Stop playback.

FastForward

Fast Forward

Increase the playback rate.

Rewind

Rewind

Reverse the playback and increase the rate.

Record

Record

Record.

NextChapter

Chapter +

Skip to the next chapter or item in a playlist, can also be used as a Page Up or Down.

PreviousChapter

Chapter -

Skip back to the previous chapter or item in a playlist, can also be used as a Page Up or Down.

Power

Power (Software)

Power button. For this purpose we will assume it refers to the running software.

Power2

Power (PC)

Second Power button. For this purpose we will assume it always refers to the PCs power state.

Power3

Power (Other)

Third Power button. User definable. Remove?

Teletext

Teletext

Turns Teletext (or can be subtitles) on or off.

Red

Red Teletext Button

When used in a teletext system these buttons each serve a purpose, however in systems or situations that do not have teletext these buttons can be given user-defined functions.

Green

Green Teletext Button

 

Yellow

Yellow Teletext Button

 

Blue

Blue Teletext Button

 

Subtitles

Subtitles

Toggle or Cycle subtitles.

Menu

Menu

Go to Menu (often DVD Menu).

Clear

Clear / Delete

Clear a text entry or delete a single character (backspace).

Enter

Enter

Simulates a keyboard Enter button press, or is used to add a carriage return to a block of text, where as pressing OK/Select would finish the text entry mode.

Hash

Used for special functions in alpha-numeric text entry modes. Or simply as a special character.

Star

*

Used for special functions in alpha-numeric text entry modes. Or simply as a special character.

TaskSwap

Task Swap / Alt-Tab

Used to switch between running applications on the PC.

Fullscreen

Toggle Fullscreen

Toggle video playback or window size between fullscreen and windowed.

AspectRatio

Toggle Aspect Ratio

Cycle the video aspect ratio between available values.

Setup

Setup

Setup. General configuration button.

Music

Music

Go to the Music section of a program, or used to launch a music application.

Pictures

Pictures

Go to the Pictures section of a program, or used to launch a picture viewer application.

Videos

Videos

Go to the Videos section of a program, or used to launch a video player application.

DVD

DVD

Go to the DVD section of a program, or used to launch a DVD player application.

TV

Television

Go to the Television section of a program, or used to launch a television application.

Guide

Guide / EPG

Go to the Guide or EPG section of a program.

LiveTV

Live TV

Go to the Live TV section of a program, or used to launch a live TV application.

RecordedTV

Recorded TV programs

Go to the Recorded TV section of a program, or used to launch a video playback application.

Radio

Radio

Go to the Radio section of a program, or used to launch a radio application.

Print

Print

Print the current view/document.

Snapshot

Create Snapshot

Create an image snapshot of the current view.

Open

Open

Open a file/program.

Close

Close

Close a file/program.

Eject

Eject

Eject a CD/DVD.

ScrollUp

Scroll Up

Scroll the view up. Remove?

ScrollDown

Scroll Down

Scroll the view down. Remove?

PageUp

Page Up

Page Up. Remove?

PageDown

Page Down

Page Down. Remove?

   

 

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