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  #1  
Old 07-30-2004, 12:56 PM
erics erics is offline
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newbie conflict resolution question

I've had Sage 1.4 for awhile but didn't use it much. This past week I installed 2.0.20 and am really pleased with the UI upgrades. But now that I've starting to really look at Sage2, I have questions regarding how it handles scheduling conflicts. Note, I own a Tivo and so I'm used to how it handles Season Passes and Conflict resolution, so I will make comparisons to Tivo. Also, my configuration is a SINGLE tuner card.

Ok, so for testing purposes I created a Favoriate for "The Practice" using the default favoriate settings. Afterwards I look at the Scheduled Recordings and see that "The Practice" is scheduled to record at 3pm and 9pm on ABC tomorrow and at 3pm & 10pm next Sat. None of the 4 airings are duplicates of each other. Ok good.

Now I want to test a simple conflict, trying to schedule a manual recording that conflicts with a Favoriate. So I open the TVGuide and highlight "Cold Case" at 9pm tomorrow on CBS. I press the record button on my remote and a red box appears around "Cold Case" indicating it is now scheduled to be recorded.

At this point I expected Sage to behave like Tivo or Replay and pop up a big warning message informing me a conflict exists between Cold Case and The Practice at 9pm, but it doesn't. There is no warning box and there IS NO RED "!" indicating a conflict.

Now this is where it gets strange. If I then UNSCHEDULE "Cold Case" from being manually recorded (ie, by highlighting it in the Guide and clicking Record again), Sage pops up a tiny red & yellow "!" in the upper right-hand corner. HUH?????? I've just REMOVED the conflict and only now does Sage puts up a warning sign? This doesn't make any logical sense. If I then immediately press the Record button again to RESCHEDULE "Cold Case" to be recorded, the red "!" warning GOES AWAY yet again even though I've just RECREATED THE CONFLICT. Something is really wrong here.

The behavior I think a normal user expects is a dialog box appearing AT THE TIME they attempt to create a recording conflict with a Favoriate. Also, if Sage is going to put up a tiny red conflict indicator (the red "!") then the warning should appear while the conflict exists AND NOT AFTER I'VE CLEARED IT!

I think what is really confusing is that Sage WILL display a popup dialog box asking for user input if I attempt to schedule two conflicting MANUAL recordings via the TV Guide. Why the difference in handling conflicts between 2 Manual recordings vs a Manual & Favoriate recording?

Can someone explain the rational behind this behavior?
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  #2  
Old 07-30-2004, 01:08 PM
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malore malore is offline
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SageTV gives higher priority to manual recordings in everything it does (recording, listing, deleting). The rational would seem to be that if you indicate you want a show recorded on a specific channel at a specific time, it means more to you than a favorite that is recorded whenever it can be fit in.

SageTV periodically refreshes it scheduled recordings and then notifies you of a conflict. Tivo checks when you first schedule a show and if the schedule changes later and there is a conflict your out of luck, you'll never be notified.

Last edited by malore; 07-30-2004 at 01:12 PM.
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  #3  
Old 07-30-2004, 02:09 PM
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Was there anything else also scheduled to be recorded? The best thing to do would be to go look at the scheduled recordings and/or the conflict screen to see whatthe current status is. Also, if SageTV can reschedule a non-manual recording to resolve a conflict, it will do so automatically.

- Andy
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  #4  
Old 07-31-2004, 09:49 AM
erics erics is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by malore
SageTV gives higher priority to manual recordings in everything it does (recording, listing, deleting). The rational would seem to be that if you indicate you want a show recorded on a specific channel at a specific time, it means more to you than a favorite that is recorded whenever it can be fit in.
Manual recordings trump all.... wow... that's a REALLY REALLY REALLY important fact to know. Thanks for the info! Without knowing this key fact, anyone using Sage as their primary DVR is screwed.

But I honestly have to say that Sage's logic is off base. Why should Sage think Manual recordings are more important than Favorites(or Season Passes)? First of all, I don't think EITHER type of recording should carry more weight. They are just different ways of scheduling a recording. But if one type HAS to carry more weight, then wouldn't the complete OPPOSITE be true 95% of the time? I mean, the purpose of a "Favorite" is to record your FAVORITE programs, the programs you watch the most and the programs you NEVER EVER WANT TO MISS! When a person is surfing the guide and marking programs to record, it's more likely these are impulse choices, not "must-haves". If this wasn't true, you'd already have Favorites in most instances. For example, like when you're surfing the Guide and see a rerun of the Simpsons or South Park and think you might want to record it. So yeah, you want it but NOT at the expense of knocking off your 1st run Favorite for Alais or West Wings or 24! Hell, it might even be that I actually DO want to record a rerun episode of the Simpsons over a first run Favoriate, but the point I'm making is ALLOW ME TO MAKE AN INFORMED DECISION at the time of scheduling by poping up a decision dialog box informing me of a conflict. That's all I'm asking. I might have 30 Favoriates setup in Sage. How in the hell am I suppose to know if any one of those 30 favorites overlaps with a rerun of the Simpsons I've just picked off Guide unless Sage TELLS ME? Sage should say show X you are trying to record conflicts with your Favorite show Y at xxx Time on yyy Date so that I can make an intelligent choice! If I have to go through and search every single one of my Favorites looking for conflicts AFTER I've scheduled a Manual recording, it becomes time consuming and rather pointless. The purpose of a DVR is to make recording easier not harder. Even a VCR crys foul when you try to schedule a recording that overlaps with a previous one . Does this make sense to anyone else or is it just me?


Quote:
SageTV periodically refreshes it scheduled recordings and then notifies you of a conflict. Tivo checks when you first schedule a show and if the schedule changes later and there is a conflict your out of luck, you'll never be notified. [/B]
If what you're saying about Sage is true, here is why the above logic is bad:

1. The instance where a conflict arises due to a schedule change after you've created a recording is MUCH MUCH MUCH less likely to occur than the case where a person inadvertantly creates a recording conflict while surfing the Guide.

2. The logic for "periodically refreshing" it's schedule and then notifing you LATER of a conflict (instead of checking at the time of scheduling) is terrible. What this effectively means is that Sage expects you to schedule a recording, then go away for some unspecified period of time, and then COME BACK to check if you have a conflict??? That's crazy. What if it's 9am and you're late for work but you want to schedule something? By that logic, I have to come home from work in the middle of the day to see if what I've scheduled conflicts with something else I previously setup. Why in the world would anyone want to do this? It doesn't make sense!

3. Sage doesn't even view overlaps between Favorites and Manual recording as conflicts to begin with!
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  #5  
Old 07-31-2004, 09:54 AM
erics erics is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Opus4
Was there anything else also scheduled to be recorded? The best thing to do would be to go look at the scheduled recordings and/or the conflict screen to see whatthe current status is. Also, if SageTV can reschedule a non-manual recording to resolve a conflict, it will do so automatically.

- Andy
Andy, nothing else was scheduled to be recorded in that timeslot other than the Favorite and then the Manual I created for the test. Thanks for the tip about the Conflict Screen. It's a nice touch... similar to Tivo's "To Do list" only that the To List gives information about what will be recorded in addition to what won't be recorded and why.
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  #6  
Old 07-31-2004, 10:10 AM
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Opus4 Opus4 is offline
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If you do some experimenting, you'll see that it does generate a conflict when you schedule a manual recording that prevents a favorite from being recorded at all. If it can reschedule the favorite to record the same episode at a different time, it will do so. I did that just now & the conflict showed up within a minute or so... and my server is _slow_.

Manual recordings are considered higher priority because you have now gone and told it that it MUST record that one particular show. All other automatic scheduliung has to work around that fact. If you want it to automatically schedule that one show rather than record that particular airing of it, make it a favorite.

BTW -- the conflict screen is actually the "Recording Information" screen. I'm not sure why it was named that way.

Oh -- you said nothign else was scheduled during the timeslot you were testing... don't forget that things get juggled around to see if a conflict can get recorded at some other time. So, any test to see if a conflict will arise must include checking to see if the show you expect to conflict is aired again during a time w/o any conflicts.

- Andy
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  #7  
Old 07-31-2004, 10:19 AM
erics erics is offline
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ok, it's a bug

Ok, it's a bug
Ok, I've just gone back and played with creating a conflict between a Favorite and a Manual. The problem I cited previously about Sage incorrectly putting up the "!" notification is definitely a bug... which led to a lot of confusion on my part. It's not a huge bug or anything that prevents Sage from working, but it's confusing for a newbie like me.

Here are the steps...
1. create a favorite
2. open the TVGuide and surf to an instance of the favorite you created in step #1.
3. highlight a show in a conflicting timeslot as your Favorite.
4. click the Record button on your remote.
5. at this point a red "!" conflict warning SHOULD appear. It does not!
6. immediately click the Record button again to UNSCHEDULE the manual recording you previously scheduled in step #4.
7. now notice that the red "!" conflicit warning HAS NOW APPEARED even though you just cleared the conflict. BUG!
8. click the Record button again, which recreates the conflict, and watch as the red "!" mysteriously disappear even though you now have a conflict.

Obviously Frey's code in this section of SageTV is out of sync. If you back out of the Guide to the Main Menu, Sage properly refreshes the conflict warning sign and all is good. But as long as you remain in the TVGuide, the conflict warning is out of sync with what's actually scheduled.

So like I said, it's not a show stopper bug or anything, but it led to a huge amount of confusion on my part.

But this still doesn't change my belief about the a much needed Popup dialog box warning. The "!" is nice an all that, that is if Frey fixes the bug, but it's really not enough. The red "!" is small & easy to miss and really isnt' intuitive for anyone who's not extremely familiar with Sage. A nonSage expert won't have a clue they just did something that wacked your episode of CSI. I still think Sage should warn users and give them a choice with a pop up, just like it behaves when you attempt to schedule 2 conflicting Manual recordings.

Anyways that's my 2 cents. I still think this is a great product and hope Frey contiues to improve the software by listening to users and incorporating reasonable requests.
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  #8  
Old 07-31-2004, 10:46 AM
erics erics is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Opus4
If you do some experimenting, you'll see that it does generate a conflict when you schedule a manual recording that prevents a favorite from being recorded at all. If it can reschedule the favorite to record the same episode at a different time, it will do so. I did that just now & the conflict showed up within a minute or so... and my server is _slow_.
Yes, it does if you exit the Guide screen. But if you are still in the Guide, the warning is outta wack which is why I was so terribly confused.

Quote:
Manual recordings are considered higher priority because you have now gone and told it that it MUST record that one particular show. All other automatic scheduliung has to work around that fact. If you want it to automatically schedule that one show rather than record that particular airing of it, make it a favorite.
Thanks. I now understand Sage's logic regarding manual recordings even though I really don't think it makes sense. Like is said above, if ANYTHING, a Favorite is going to be more important to most people than an impulse inspired Manual recording. But in reality, the DVR should just give you the conflict information immediately via a Dialog box so you can make an informed decision. Sage already does this for 2 conflicitng Manual recordings... Anyways, thank you for setting me straight. It least with this knowledge, I can "work around" Sage's logic.

Quote:
Oh -- you said nothign else was scheduled during the timeslot you were testing... don't forget that things get juggled around to see if a conflict can get recorded at some other time. So, any test to see if a conflict will arise must include checking to see if the show you expect to conflict is aired again during a time w/o any conflicts.
I think I understand what you are saying. What you are basically saying is that Sage doesn't really obey user defined Priorities. Right? I read in a different thread where you responded to someone's Scheduling Priority question. From your response to his question regarding the case where you have 2 favorites setup that conflict, Sage will not follow your priority directives if the higher priority Favorite can be rescheduled to not conflict with the lower priority Favorite. Is this really true? If so, then this basically means that arranging Favorites in any order of priority really doesn't mean anything.... Sage is gonna do what it thinks best regardless of your priority ranking. True? If so, I need to know because this is counter-intuitive what what the program leads one to believe.

Last edited by erics; 07-31-2004 at 10:52 AM.
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  #9  
Old 07-31-2004, 10:54 AM
kny3twalker kny3twalker is offline
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Quote:
If so, then this basically means that arranging Favorites in any order of priority really doesn't mean anything.... Sage is gonna do what it thinks best regardless of your priority ranking. True? If so, I need to know because this is counter-intuitive what what the program leads one to believe.
no thats not how it works
basically it will search out another time to record the shows
and the lower priority show may get the original time slot (if thats the only one available) while the higher priority show gets recorded another day(since it is showing twice)
because sageTV wants you to see both shows not just your favorite of favorites
if both shows are only showing once
then the higher priority show takes the time slot

and besides you will never be able to keep up with all the stuff it records (so it does really matter if you see a show the first time it comes around during the two week scheduling period)
at least I cannot
LOL

and I have never enabled IR either
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  #10  
Old 07-31-2004, 10:55 AM
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Opus4 Opus4 is offline
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Let's say 2 favorites conflict. 1 is aired 1 time (the earliest time); the other is aired 2 times. Neither of those timeslots conflicts with any other recording. Now, while figuring the scheduling, SageTV will attempt to record as many of your favorites as it can, so it will schedule the single airing during that first timeslot & then scheudle the 2nd show for the repeated airing time. That way, both shows get recorded for your viewing pleasure.

Now, let's consider the case where they both only air 1 time. In that case, the higher priority favorite will get scheduled and a conflict will be thrown. It is up to you to respond to the conflict notification and decide whether to change the priorities.

SageTV's first priority will be to record as many favorites as it can, not to simply record the first one that comes along.

- Andy
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  #11  
Old 07-31-2004, 10:56 AM
kny3twalker kny3twalker is offline
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hehe
thats twice this week
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  #12  
Old 07-31-2004, 10:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by kny3twalker
hehe
thats twice this week
What? Posting at almost the same time? That happens so often, I've learned to ignore it now. Oh -- unless the answers conflict.

- Andy
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  #13  
Old 07-31-2004, 11:16 AM
erics erics is offline
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Thanks guys. I'm sure these types of questions happen a lot and you're probably sick of answering them... I read through the archives and was still confused about priorities but this really clears it up.

The "Sage" way of handling favorites is a bit confusing but I can deal with it. I really wish there was a conprehensive FAQ about Scheduling Logic, Priority handling, and how it's all different depending on whether the recording type is Favorite or Manual. I think I have a handle on it now, but I'm sure there will be lots of new users converting from STB PVRs like Replay, Tivo and Ultimate that will be just a confused as me. Thanks again for the "tech support"! I still love this product.... just wish I could fix my lip-sync issues.
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  #14  
Old 07-31-2004, 02:05 PM
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Opus4 Opus4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by erics
I really wish there was a conprehensive FAQ about Scheduling Logic, Priority handling, and how it's all different depending on whether the recording type is Favorite or Manual.
This FAQ entry covers a little of the priority, but it does so from the side of how it determines which shows to delete first. I suppose there isn't a corresponding one covering how the recording schedule is determined... unless I've already forgotten what is in the FAQs.

Quote:
Originally posted by erics
just wish I could fix my lip-sync issues.
That's easy -- I solved that problem by not moving my lips any more when I'm done talking. I've never understood how Japanese actors can manage to continue to move their lips when done speaking their lines.

Oh, wait! You mean during playback in SageTV? (oops!) There is an Audio Playback Delay setting in the Audio section of Detailed Setup. If you post details about your audio/video configuration, maybe someone can give you pointers on that too.

- Andy
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  #15  
Old 07-31-2004, 05:21 PM
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ToxMox ToxMox is offline
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Re: ok, it's a bug

Can you humor me and run these steps again but waiting about a minute between each step and see if this is still happening. I almost feel like you are going too fast and the conflict icon is coming up on delay.
Thanks

Quote:
Originally posted by erics

Here are the steps...
1. create a favorite
2. open the TVGuide and surf to an instance of the favorite you created in step #1.
3. highlight a show in a conflicting timeslot as your Favorite.
4. click the Record button on your remote.
5. at this point a red "!" conflict warning SHOULD appear. It does not!
6. immediately click the Record button again to UNSCHEDULE the manual recording you previously scheduled in step #4.
7. now notice that the red "!" conflicit warning HAS NOW APPEARED even though you just cleared the conflict. BUG!
8. click the Record button again, which recreates the conflict, and watch as the red "!" mysteriously disappear even though you now have a conflict.
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