13 Replies Latest reply: Dec 10, 2012 5:57 AM by turingtest2
polydorus Level 6 Level 6 (11,950 points)

Like quite a few others, I was disappointed to see that iTunes DJ has disappeared, so here are some thoughts on how to get a similar function using smart playlists.

 

The simplest thing would be to create a smart playlist as follows. As an example I have excluded the classical genre.

Match ALL

Last played is not in the last (number) days

Genre is not classical

limit: unchecked

match checked items: checked

Live updating: checked

 

Because Match any and match all cannot be mixed, if you want to use match any and match all, you need two smart playlists.

 

The first list would contain the mach ANY rules.

 

The second one would be:

Match ALL

Playlist is first playlist

Last played is not in the last (number) days

more "ALL" rules if required

limit: unchecked

match checked items: checked

Live updating: checked

You could also set shuffle on.

 

 

Does anyone have a better way of doing it?

 

OOps on typo in title, it seem titles can't be edited. :-(

  • 1. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,520 points)

    You don't need an extra smart playlist, though you would probably want to set a "source" playlist as before.

     

    Try this:

     

    iTunes11DJ.png

     

    The inital all section allows for multiple criteria that must be met. I've added a couple of ideas to your list. The second any section can be omitted, or used to list multiple rules of which at least one must be true. Using the "Last played is not in the last X days" together with "Limit to Y items selected by random" and "Live updating" ensures tracks fall out of the list as they are played and new ones get added. Using "Match only checked items" excludes items that wouldn't be played anyway.

     

    I got a little excited when I saw the new location property, but it turns out to be a boolean "on this computer" or "iCloud" and not a way to use file paths as part of the selection criteria, however it is useful in this context.

     

    tt2

  • 2. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,520 points)

    And you might want to exclude Music Videos...

     

    iTunes just popped to the foreground unexpectedly while I was testing my iTunes DJ list.

     

    tt2

  • 3. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    polydorus Level 6 Level 6 (11,950 points)

    Hi TT2

     

    I completely missed that it is possible to nest rules. How long has that been possible?

    I haven't tried anything complicated with smart playlists for a very long time.

     

    But it is still important for people to understand that mixing ANY and ALL within a nest of rules is likely to produce undesired results.

     

    I think you have to start with ALL rules or you get unexpected results as the first set of rules are not bracketed together but the nested rules are.

  • 4. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,520 points)

    Nested conditions were introduced back in iTunes 9.

     

    Generally I use the above layout but it is equally possible to make the top level ANY so that it provides the UNION of two or more sets that are then each tightly defined by a number of INTERSECTIONS with AND.

     

    Apparently you can nest up to five levels deep, but I suspect you'd need to iterate your design to get anything that complex doing exactly what you wanted.

     

    tt2

  • 5. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    polydorus Level 6 Level 6 (11,950 points)

    Since iTunes 9 :-)

     

    I think that if you start with ANY then the nested set of rules is treated as another ANY in the first set even if the nested rules are ANY.

     

    I guess it just show how carefully you have to test things in smart playlist if you want to do anything slightly more adventurous.

     

    I also have streams excluded in my DJ playlist..

  • 6. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,520 points)

    For the sake of argument we have two playlists A & B and are interested in the songs that are in exactly one of those playlists, but not both. This can be expressed in two ways:

     

    (A and not B) or (B and not A)

     

    or

     

    (A or B) and (not(A and B))

     

    Where or and and are the same as starting the smart playlist with any or all, and the brackets each side form the nested clauses.

     

    venn-diagram[1].jpg

     

    tt2

  • 7. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    polydorus Level 6 Level 6 (11,950 points)

    The point I was trying to make is that the starting list of rules is not bracketed.

    So if you use ANY i.e OR each rule including the result of a nested set of rules is tested sequentialy and if any of them is true the whole result is true.

     

    This is usually not what people expect when the mix ANY and ALL, I seem to remember it coming up from time to time when people could not get their smart playlist to do what they wanted.

     

    I expect there will be quite a few people wanting to make simulated iTunes DJ playlists if all the complaints are anything to go by, so I thought it was worth bringing up. Your diagram was much better than my sketchy out line proposal. :-)

  • 8. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    m-rori Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Polydrus and turingtest2 this is all fascinating and groovy stuff. But why should i try to understand how to do all this and find the sort of table that is in the turingtest2 screenshot.  I tried selecting all and shuffle which of course is not a  good approximation. But given this iTunes is an incredible databse of our music - which is easy to use - why now shoud we have to dig around like IT gurus to try to approximate something that worked a dream?

     

    Let's face it Apple just prescribed what it wanted to, assuming it knows best, but not taking into account its customer base! This is possibly symptomatic for the way the company is headed as a whole taking a turn to the mainstream away from the cool cutting edge that its image was built upon.

     

    If you guys can figure out how to do this as you have shown above, how simple must it be for iTunes 11.1 be issued immediately with the iTunes DJ function back in there, delighting all its users and fans that are scouring these support groups to get something they like.

     

    But seriously thanks for working these things out. I guess I will have to click around and see if I can understand it all!

  • 9. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    polydorus Level 6 Level 6 (11,950 points)

    Apple doesn't regularly monitor the forum, if you want iTunes DJ back, as many people do, you can give feedback here:

     

    http://www.apple.com/feedback/itunesapp.html

     

    In the mean time, messing about with smart playlists is the best we can do. :-)

  • 10. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    Akiratoo Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Is there any way of introducing a rule that creates a refresh option?

  • 11. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,520 points)

    Not in front of iTunes at the moment, but as I recall you can select the tracks of a smart playlist (ctrl-a) and hit delete. iTunes will repopulate the list according to the rules.

     

    tt2

  • 12. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    polydorus Level 6 Level 6 (11,950 points)

    Deleting the items in the playlist isn't a very convenient way of doing it but it kind of works.

     

    In order to make it work, you have set a limit that is less than the total possible items in the list or deleting isn't allowed.

     

    If you set the limit to well under then number of possible items selected and select them at random, it will repopulate with a different list, except when I tried it the first track always stayed the same.

  • 13. Re: Thgoughts on simulating iTunes DJ in iTunes 11
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,520 points)

    Yep, the rules I set out earlier would result in a self-updating short list from a longer one. Deleting all is a way to regenreate the whole short list which I think is what Akriatoo was asking for...

     

    tt2