Right now, the music app shows one of 10 pieces of placeholder art, based on the item's position in the list. This is bad for a few reasons: 1) It's inconsistent. Depending on how the list is arranged, the art will be different. It would be more helpful if we always used the same art for a given album. 2) There aren't many different placeholders, so you see a lot of repeats. 3) We're forced to keep track of the "background-index" in way too many places in the code. Fixing this would eliminate that and reduce the arity of a bunch of our functions. 4) Placeholder art is handled totally differently from embedded art, making it harder to do interesting things with album art (e.g. sending album art to other apps for "now playing" info). Instead, we could create unique placeholder art using <canvas> by picking a solid background color (maybe based on a hash of the genre field?) and then writing some combination of the artist/album on top. Windows Media Center does something like this, although the end result could be prettier (see one of the albums on the left edge): <http://i.imgur.com/baBC00y.png>. Further, in doing this, we could store the art on the SD card instead of in the mediaDB, meaning that loading the art would probably be faster, and I think would work better when swapping SD cards. Gallery stores its thumbnails this way too, so there's already some precedent.
Summary: [music] Improve the placeholder art → [music][metadata] Improve the placeholder art
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