Feedback on Creating Smart Media Templates

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Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Posted: Thu, Aug 24 2017 12:59 PM

Thank you so much for including the ability to create our own Smart Media Templates in 2.4. This has been much needed. I can't believe you haven't shouted this new feature from the rooftops! I finally got the chance to play around with it, and didn't find it immediately intuitive. It was very simple once I'd understood it, but some improved documentation would have helped.

I therefore have the following suggestions:

The biggest problem was that I didn't understand that when I created a Smart Media Template it saves a new "image" in the Media Browser. I was expected to be able to edit the properties of my existing background image. But in actual fact, using the Template editor I need to create four copies of this image (on each for content, song, Bible and announcement).

  • I thought I would be editing the properties of my existing background because the button in the Media Browser is labelled, "Edit as Content Smart Media". It should really be labelled "Create Content Smart Media from this item".
  • Renaming the "Save" button to "Save as" when creating a template would also help a little bit.
  • I think the documentation could also make it clearer that you create Smart Media from an existing image, and have to create a new media item for each slide type.
  • Labelling Smart Media within Group Uploads would also help. A little overlay in the corner, similar to the overlay used to distinguish videos, would be all that was required.
  • Linking to the documentation from the Edit Smart Media screen would be nice, and would have saved me time.
  • At the bottom of the Edit Smart Media documentation, reference is given to changing default media. It would be nice if this was an actual link to the relevant page.

The second major problem was that there are differences in creating Smart Media from the Media Browser, or from the main app, at least with regard to Content slides. When you do so from the main app, you get four choices (Header subheader / Sermon Title / Sermon Content / Welcome). When you do so from the Media Browser you get no choices, but then you're given a (Main and Bible) slides. This distinction makes no sense to me (why Bible on a content slide? why the discrepancies?). I presume this is a bug, if not, then I'm still confused, and you'll need to explain it to me :-).

The third problem was that when you edit Smart Media, you're actually creating new Smart Media. Again, I hope this is a bug, but if not, then the labels need to be changed, as above.

A fourth problem is that when you set custom Smart Media to be the default media, the thumbnail used is not the same thumbnail used in the Media Browser (i.e. it doesn't have sample content). This is confusing, as it makes you think it hasn't worked properly.

Some more minor points.

It seems odd that if you create Smart Media from the main app you can't import existing media, but have to upload it.

It would also have been very helpful to be able to take an existing service item and "Save as" Smart Media. This would have saved me a lot of time, because all my templates already exist.

It would be nice to assign Smart Media to a Board when you save it, instead of having to do so later from the Media Browser.

It would be nice to be able to apply a setting on multiple slides. For example, on the Song slide, I may want the Credits in exactly the same location on the Title and Main slides. That's currently very hard to achieve.

In the future, it would be great if this could be extended to allow additional content slide types to be added. For example, I have three or four template slides for notices depending on whether or not there's a speaker, or we need to specify a location (I use additional custom fields for this extra information, and on slides without it, the text is larger and more spaced out).

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Jordan Sjodin | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Aug 24 2017 1:21 PM

Thanks for the feedback Mark! A lot of what you suggest we already thought of too! So we will be sending some updates out soon to address those concerns.

Mark Barnes:
This distinction makes no sense to me (why Bible on a content slide? why the discrepancies?). I presume this is a bug, if not, then I'm still confused, and you'll need to explain it to me :-).

The reason for seeing Bible here is that most Content items have a styled, 'Bible' slide for when you use the `[[jn 3:16]]` embedded references. So you could add a new `Sermon Content` and then style the main slide for your sermon notes, and the bible slide for the embedded references.

Mark Barnes:
The third problem was that when you edit Smart Media, you're actually creating new Smart Media. Again, I hope this is a bug, but if not, then the labels need to be changed, as above.

Yes, this is bad wording, media is mostly immutable in Proclaim, so thats why we have to make a new one. The button should be changed to reflect this.

Mark Barnes:
It would also have been very helpful to be able to take an existing service item and "Save as" Smart Media. This would have saved me a lot of time, because all my templates already exist.

coming soon!

Mark Barnes:
It would be nice to assign Smart Media to a Board when you save it, instead of having to do so later from the Media Browser.

Totally!

Mark Barnes:
In the future, it would be great if this could be extended to allow additional content slide types to be added. For example, I have three or four template slides for notices depending on whether or not there's a speaker, or we need to specify a location (I use additional custom fields for this extra information, and on slides without it, the text is larger and more spaced out).

I don't completely understand what you mean. Currently,  you should be able to create a new `Sermon Content` template and remove the main content field. Then you can add your own textBoxes and place them where you want, as well as change the hint text to something that makes sense for your specific use case. 

Thanks again Mark

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Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Aug 24 2017 1:28 PM

Jordan Sjodin:

I don't completely understand what you mean. Currently,  you should be able to create a new `Sermon Content` template and remove the main content field. Then you can add your own textBoxes and place them where you want, as well as change the hint text to something that makes sense for your specific use case. 

Yes, you are quite right. Thank you.

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Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Aug 24 2017 1:34 PM

Jordan Sjodin:

Mark Barnes:
This distinction makes no sense to me (why Bible on a content slide? why the discrepancies?). I presume this is a bug, if not, then I'm still confused, and you'll need to explain it to me :-).

The reason for seeing Bible here is that most Content items have a styled, 'Bible' slide for when you use the `[[jn 3:16]]` embedded references. So you could add a new `Sermon Content` and then style the main slide for your sermon notes, and the bible slide for the embedded references.

That makes sense. I'd forgotten about that feature. In that case it would be nice to be able to copy the styling from the Bible slide.

I edited my post as you were writing yours, and I think some things got missed as a consequence. I'll include them below:

  • When you set custom Smart Media to be the default media, the thumbnail used is not the same thumbnail used in the Media Browser (i.e. it doesn't have sample content). This is confusing, as it makes you think it hasn't worked properly.
  • It seems odd that if you create Smart Media from the main app you can't import existing media, but have to upload it.
  • It would be nice to be able to apply a setting on multiple slides. For example, on the Song slide, I may want the Credits in exactly the same location on the Title and Main slides. That's currently very hard to achieve.

You also didn't comment on the following (edited for clarity and to remove a separate issue).

There are differences in creating Smart Media from the Media Browser, or from the main app, at least with regard to Content slides. When you do so from the main app, you get four choices (Header subheader / Sermon Title / Sermon Content / Welcome). When you do so from the Media Browser you don't get those choices, it just defaults to Sermon Content. Is that a bug?

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Jordan Sjodin | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Aug 24 2017 2:12 PM

Mark Barnes:
When you set custom Smart Media to be the default media, the thumbnail used is not the same thumbnail used in the Media Browser (i.e. it doesn't have sample content). This is confusing, as it makes you think it hasn't worked properly.

I see, looks like we might just be using the wrong image there..

Mark Barnes:
It seems odd that if you create Smart Media from the main app you can't import existing media, but have to upload it.

Agree; we currently have a card to improve this.

Mark Barnes:
It would be nice to be able to apply a setting on multiple slides. For example, on the Song slide, I may want the Credits in exactly the same location on the Title and Main slides. That's currently very hard to achieve.

I hadn't thought about this before, but I see this issue... We will see what we can do here

Mark Barnes:
(Header subheader / Sermon Title / Sermon Content / Welcome). When you do so from the Media Browser you don't get those choices, it just defaults to Sermon Content. Is that a bug?

Yes, the media browser should be updated to show the same list.

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