US20150020011A1 - Media program discovery assistance user interface systems and methods - Google Patents

Media program discovery assistance user interface systems and methods Download PDF

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Publication number
US20150020011A1
US20150020011A1 US14/011,667 US201314011667A US2015020011A1 US 20150020011 A1 US20150020011 A1 US 20150020011A1 US 201314011667 A US201314011667 A US 201314011667A US 2015020011 A1 US2015020011 A1 US 2015020011A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
media program
panel
browse
media
assistance
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US14/011,667
Inventor
Brian F. Roberts
Brandon Neil Wright
Ann Gordon Prather
Christina S. Siegfried
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Verizon Patent and Licensing Inc
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Verizon and Redbox Digital Entertainment Services LLC
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Publication date
Priority to US201361846603P priority Critical
Application filed by Verizon and Redbox Digital Entertainment Services LLC filed Critical Verizon and Redbox Digital Entertainment Services LLC
Priority to US14/011,667 priority patent/US20150020011A1/en
Assigned to Verizon and Redbox Digital Entertainment Services, LLC reassignment Verizon and Redbox Digital Entertainment Services, LLC ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: ROBERTS, BRIAN F., WRIGHT, BRANDON NEIL, SIEGFRIED, CHRISTINA S., PRATHER, ANN GORDON
Publication of US20150020011A1 publication Critical patent/US20150020011A1/en
Assigned to VERIZON PATENT AND LICENSING INC. reassignment VERIZON PATENT AND LICENSING INC. ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: Verizon and Redbox Digital Entertainment Services, LLC
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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Abstract

As exemplary media program discovery assistance user interface method includes a computing device 1) displaying, on a display screen, a graphical user interface that includes a media program browse panel configured to present browse content representing media programs and an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel presented together with the media program browse panel in the graphical user interface, 2) detecting a current browse state of the media program browse panel, 3) selecting, based on the detected current browse state of the media program browse panel, media program discovery assistance content for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel, and 4) populating the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with the selected media program discovery assistance content. Corresponding systems and methods are also described.

Description

    RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • The present application claims priority under 35 U.S.C. §119(e) to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/846,603, filed Jul. 15, 2013. The contents of the provisional patent application are hereby incorporated by reference in their entirety.
  • BACKGROUND INFORMATION
  • There are diverse ways for people to discover and consume media programs. For example, a person wanting to watch a media program such as a movie may utilize a video distribution service such as a video rental or purchase service (“video service”) to find, access, and watch a movie. The video service may allow the person to rent or purchase a physical copy of the movie from a local video store or video vending kiosk, or to rent or purchase a digital copy of the movie through an online video service, which may stream or download the digital copy of the movie to a user computing device for playback to the user.
  • A video service typically provides a set of service features and tools for use by an end user of the video service to interact with the video service to discover video programs for user consumption. While a conventional video service provides useful features and tools, there remains room for new and/or improved features and/or tools that may further benefit users of the service, a provider of the service, and/or third parties such as content providers and/or advertisers. For example, there remains room to improve user interface features and/or tools to better assist a user of the service in discovering media programs by finding media programs that are of potential interest to the user and choosing which, if any, of those media programs to consume.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • The accompanying drawings illustrate various embodiments and are a part of the specification. The illustrated embodiments are merely examples and do not limit the scope of the disclosure. Throughout the drawings, identical or similar reference numbers designate identical or similar elements.
  • FIG. 1 illustrates an exemplary media program discovery assistance user interface system according to principles described herein.
  • FIG. 2 illustrates a framework of an exemplary graphical user interface according to principles described herein.
  • FIGS. 3-8 illustrate exemplary views of a graphical user interface according to principles described herein.
  • FIG. 9 illustrates an exemplary implementation of the system of FIG. 1 according to principles described herein.
  • FIG. 10 illustrates an exemplary media program discovery assistance user interface method according to principles described herein.
  • FIG. 11 illustrates an exemplary computing device according to principles described herein.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
  • Examples of media program discovery assistance user interface systems and methods are described herein. The systems and methods described herein may provide one or more features and/or tools configured to assist a user (e.g., an end user of a media service) in discovering media programs by finding media programs that are of potential interest to the user and scrutinizing those media programs to decide which, if any, of those media programs to consume. For example, the systems and methods described herein may display, on a display screen, a graphical user interface (“GUI”) configured for use by a user to discover media programs. The GUI may include a media program browse panel (“browse panel”) configured to present browse content representing media programs and for use by the user to browse media programs. The GUI may further include an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel (“assistance panel”) displayed together with the browse panel in the GUI (e.g., immediately adjacent to the browse panel in the GUI) and configured to present media program discovery assistance content to assist the user with discovery of media programs, such as with finding and selecting media programs in the browse panel and scrutinizing one or more media programs that are selected in the browse panel in order to decide whether to consume any of the selected media programs and/or which of the selected media programs to consume.
  • The assistance panel may be dynamically populated with media program discovery assistance content based on a current browse state of the browse panel. In certain examples, for instance, the systems and methods described herein may detect the current browse state of the browse panel, select, based on the detected current browse state of the browse panel, media program discovery assistance content for inclusion in the assistance panel, and populate the assistance panel with the dynamically selected media program discovery assistance content.
  • Additionally or alternatively, the systems and methods may detect a change in the current browse state of the browse panel to a new browse state, select, based on the new browse state of the browse panel, new media program discovery assistance content for inclusion in the assistance panel, and populate the assistance panel with the dynamically selected new media program discovery assistance content (e.g., by replacing the media program discovery assistance content with the new media program discovery assistance content). In this or a similar manner, the media program discovery assistance content in the assistance panel may be dynamically updated in response to changes in the current browse state of the browse panel such that relevant and/or contextual media program discovery assistance content is adaptively presented in the assistance panel to contextually assist the user with discovery of media programs.
  • By dynamically populating the assistance panel with adaptive media program discovery assistance content based on the current browse state of the browse panel, the exemplary media program discovery assistance user interface systems and methods described herein may assist a user with discovery of media programs, including with finding and selecting media programs in the browse panel and scrutinizing one or more media programs that are selected in the browse panel in order to decide whether to consume any of the selected media programs and/or which of the selected media programs to consume, in a manner that is convenient, intuitive, and/or efficient to the user.
  • Examples of media program discovery assistance user interface systems and methods providing a GUI that includes a browse panel and an assistance panel and dynamically populating the assistance panel with adaptive media program discovery assistance content will now be described in reference to the accompanying drawings.
  • FIG. 1 illustrates an exemplary media program discovery assistance user interface system 100 (“system 100”), which may be configured to provide a user interface through which a user of a computing device may interact with system 100 and/or a media service to discover media content. In certain examples, the user interface may include a GUI displayed by system 100 on a display screen. The display of the GUI on the display screen by system 100 may include system 100 performing one or more operations related to and/or supportive of the display of the GUI on the display screen. For example, system 100 may generate data representative of the GUI, provide (e.g., output, transmit, etc.) data representative of the GUI, populate the GUI with content, and/or direct a display device to display the GUI on the display screen.
  • System 100 may include, without limitation, a media program browse panel facility 102 (“browse panel facility 102”), an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel facility 104 (“assistance panel facility 104”), and a storage facility 106 selectively and communicatively coupled to one another. It will be recognized that although facilities 102-106 are shown to be separate facilities in FIG. 1, any of facilities 102-106 may be combined into fewer facilities, such as into a single facility, or divided into more facilities as may serve a particular implementation. Facilities 102-106 of system 100 may include or be otherwise implemented by one or more computing devices. In such implementations, system 100 may be referred to as a computer-implemented system 100 or a computing system 100.
  • Storage facility 106 may be configured to store data generated and/or used by browse panel facility 102 and/or assistance panel facility 104. For example, storage facility 106 may store media data 108 representative of media content (e.g., data representative of one or more media programs, metadata, rich metadata, and/or other information related to the media programs), such as a library of media programs distributed by a media service.
  • As used herein, the term “media content” may refer to any form of media that may be distributed by a media service and consumed by a user of the media service. Media content may include discrete instances of media, which may be referred to as media programs. The term “media program” may refer to any television program, on-demand media program, pay-per-view media program, broadcast media program (e.g., broadcast television program), multicast media program (e.g., multicast television program), narrowcast media program (e.g., narrowcast video-on-demand program), IPTV media program, advertisement, video, movie, audio program, radio program, or any other media program that a user may access by way of a media service. Such media programs that are made available for user consumption by a media service may be accessed and/or played back by an appropriately configured user computing device (e.g., a media player device) for presentation to the user.
  • Storage facility 106 may also store browse panel data 110 associated with a media program browse panel, such as data representative of browse content that may be presented in the media program browse panel, discovery assistance panel data 112 associated with an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel, such as data representative of media program discovery assistance content that may be presented in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel, and user data 114 associated with one or more users of system 100, which in some examples may be end users of a media service that makes media content available for discovery and/or consumption by the end users of the media service. The user data 114 may include any information about such users and may be used by browse panel facility 102 and/or assistance panel facility 104 to personalize content of a GUI to a user. Storage facility 106 may store additional or alternative data as may serve a particular implementation.
  • The data stored by storage facility 106 may be accessed by system 100 from any suitable source, including a source internal or external to system 100. Storage facility 106 may permanently or temporarily store data. In certain examples, system 100 may access certain data from a source external to system 100 and temporarily store the data in storage facility 106 for use by browse panel facility 102 and/or assistance panel facility 104. In certain examples, data generated by browse panel facility 102 and/or assistance panel facility 104 may be stored permanently or temporarily to storage facility 106.
  • Browse panel facility 102 may be configured to perform one or more operations to generate and provide a media program browse panel for presentation by system 100 in a GUI. For example, browse panel facility 102 may populate the media program browse panel with media program browse content for presentation in the GUI. The media program browse content may include any content that may be presented in a user interface and that is representative of and may facilitate user browsing of the one or more media programs within the media program browse panel. User browsing of the media programs in the media program browse panel may include a user interacting with the media program browse panel in any suitable way to find, within the media program browse panel, media programs that may be of interest to the user. As an example, the media program browse content may include a grid of image objects (e.g., cover art thumbnail images) representing media programs, and the user may provide input to navigate the grid of image objects, such as by scrolling the grid in one or more directions (e.g., one or more directions parallel to one or more dimensions of the grid) within the media program browse panel to move image objects out of the media program browse panel (e.g., off-screen) and/or into the media program browse panel (e.g., on-screen) to find media programs that may be of interest to the user.
  • Browse panel facility 102 may be configured define a current browse state of the media program browse panel and to maintain data representative of the current browse state. Browse panel facility 102 may define the current browse state dynamically based on one or more predefined conditions associated with the media program browse panel. Examples of such conditions may include, without limitation, attributes of the media program browse content included in the media program browse panel, user interactions with the media program browse panel, and/or any other attributes and/or operations associated with the media program browse panel. For example, the current browse state of a media program browse panel may be defined by browse panel facility 102 based on whether any media program represented in the media program browse panel is currently selected (e.g., by a user providing input to select the media program), one or more filters applied to the media program browse panel (e.g., application of a media program category filter that causes only media programs associated with a select category to be represented in the media program browse panel), one or more attributes of media programs represented in the media program browse panel (e.g., a category of media programs represented in the media program browse panel), one or more attributes of a media program selected in the media program browse panel (e.g., a category of a media program selected in the media program browse panel), whether a single media program or multiple media programs are selected in the media program browse panel, any other attributes and/or operations associated with the media program browse panel, and/or any combination or sub-combination thereof. Accordingly, browse panel facility 102 may be configured to determine one or more predefined browse panel conditions and define the current browse state of the media program browse panel based on the determined conditions.
  • Accordingly, the current browse state of the media program browse panel may indicate one or more conditions, including any of the conditions described herein, that are associated with the media program browse panel. Examples of media program browse panels that may be generated and provided by browse panel facility 102, as well as examples of the current browse state of the media program browse panel and ways that the current browse state of the media program browse panel may be used by assistance panel facility 104 to operate an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel are described herein.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to perform one or more operations to generate and provide an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel for presentation by system 100 in a GUI. For example, assistance panel facility 104 may populate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with media program discovery assistance content for presentation in the GUI. As described herein, assistance panel facility 104 may dynamically populate, based on the current browse state of the media program browse panel, the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with media program discovery assistance content, which may selectively include media program browse assistance content configured to assist a user with finding media programs in the media program browse panel or media program scrutiny assistance content configured to assist the user with scrutinizing one or more media programs selected in the media program browse panel.
  • To this end, assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to selectively operate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in accordance with a select operational mode based on the current browse state of the media program browse panel. In certain examples, for instance, assistance panel facility 104 may selectively operate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in a browse assistance mode when the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that no media program is selected in the media program browse panel or in a media program scrutiny assistance mode when the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that a media program is selected in the media program browse panel. In certain examples, the media program scrutiny assistance mode may include a single media program scrutiny assistance mode or a multiple media program scrutiny assistance mode depending on the number of media programs that are currently selected in the media program browse panel. Assistance panel facility 104 may selectively operate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in the single media program scrutiny assistance mode when the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that only a single media program is selected in the media program browse panel or in the multiple media program scrutiny assistance mode when the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that multiple media programs are selected in the media program browse panel. The multiple media program scrutiny assistance mode may be referred to as a media program comparison assistance mode.
  • During operation in the browse assistance mode, assistance panel facility 104 may populate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with browse assistance content configured to assist a user with finding media programs in the media program browse panel. During operation in the media program scrutiny assistance mode (e.g., in either the single or multiple media program scrutiny assistance mode), assistance panel facility 104 may populate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with media program scrutiny assistance content configured to assist the user with scrutinizing one or more media programs selected in the media program browse panel. During operation in the media program comparison assistance mode, assistance panel facility 104 may populate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with media program scrutiny assistance content configured to assist the user with scrutinizing multiple media programs selected in the media program browse panel by comparing the multiple selected media programs one to another.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to transition seamlessly between operating the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in different modes such that the content of the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel may be dynamically populated based on the current browse state of the media program browse panel and seamlessly updated in response to a change in the current browse state of the media program browse panel. Examples of adaptive media program discovery assistance panels and content that may be presented in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panels are described herein.
  • FIG. 2 illustrates an exemplary framework of a GUI 200 that includes a header panel 202, a media program browse panel 204 (“browse panel 204”), and an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel 206 (“assistance panel 206”) concurrently displayed and positioned as shown in FIG. 2.
  • Header panel 202 may include one or more media program discovery tools for use by a user to discover media programs. Examples of such tools are described herein.
  • Browse panel 204 may include browse content representing media programs, the browse content configured to facilitate a user browsing the media programs in browse panel 204. Browse panel facility 102 may define a current browse state of browse panel 204 in any of the ways described herein. Examples of browse content and states of browse panel 204 are described herein.
  • As shown in FIG. 2, assistance panel 206 may be presented together with header panel 202 and browse panel 204 in GUI 200 (e.g., adjacent to browse panel 204, as shown). Accordingly, a user may be able to concurrently view and/or selectively interact with content of browse panel 204 and assistance panel 206, which may help make discovery of media programs, including the finding and scrutinizing of media programs, convenient, intuitive, and/or efficient for the user. As shown in FIG. 2, assistance panel 206 may be positioned so as to allow browse panel 204 to continue to be fully visible in GUI 200 (e.g., by not visually obstructing the user's view of browse panel 204 and/or by not requiring a hiding of or navigation away from a view of browse panel 204).
  • The content of assistance panel 206 may be configured to adaptively and dynamically change to assist a user with different aspects of media program discovery. For example, assistance panel 206 may be configured to adapt between assisting the user with finding media programs in browse panel 204 and scrutinizing media programs selected in browse panel 204. To this end, assistance panel facility 104 may selectively operate assistance panel 206 in accordance with a media program browse assistance mode and a media program scrutiny assistance mode based on the current browse state of browse panel 204, as described above. When operating in accordance with the browse assistance mode, assistance panel 206 may be populated with media program discovery assistance content in the form of browse assistance content configured to assist the user with finding media programs in browse panel 204. When operating in accordance with the scrutiny assistance mode, assistance panel 206 may be populated with media program discovery assistance content in the form of scrutiny assistance content configured to assist the user with scrutinizing one or more media programs that are currently selected in browse panel 204.
  • While the content and mode of operation of assistance panel 206 is configured to adapt based on the current browse state of browse panel 204, in certain examples, one or more visual attributes, such as the on-screen layout and/or the “look-and-feel,” of browse panel 204 and assistance panel 206 may remain constant and/or persistent across the adaptations. This may provide view consistency in GUI 200 as the content and/or operational mode of assistance panel 206 changes based on changes to the current browse state of browse panel 204.
  • To further illustrate, FIGS. 3-7 show exemplary views of a GUI 300 that may be displayed by system 100. Each of the views of GUI 300 includes header panel 202, browse panel 204, and assistance panel 206 concurrently displayed and positioned as shown in FIGS. 3-7.
  • Header panel 202 may include media program discovery tools for use by a user to discover media programs. As shown, for example, header panel 202 may include a browse option 302 configured to be selected by a user to trigger a presentation of browse panel 204 and assistance panel 206 in GUI 300. Header panel 202 may further include a personalized media program management option 304 configured to be selected by the user to trigger a presentation of user interface content associated with personalized management of media programs. Header panel 202 may further include a profile selection option 306 configured to be used by the user to select a profile (e.g., user profile, device profile, etc.) to be used for operations that personalize content of GUI 300. Header panel 202 may further include a search tool 308 configured to be used by the user to initiate a keyword search of media programs. Header panel 202 may include additional and/or alternative media program discovery tools in other examples.
  • Browse panel 204 may include browse content 310 in the form of a two-dimensional grid of cover art image objects representing a plurality of media programs. A user may provide input to navigate the browse content 310 and to select one or more of the media programs represented by the browse content 310 (e.g., by providing input to select a cover art image object representing the media program).
  • As further shown, in certain examples, browse panel 204 may include a set of filter options 312 (e.g., filter options 312-1 through 312-3) each configured to be selected by a user to apply a filter to browse panel 204 (e.g., by filtering a library of media programs to select a subset of the media programs to be represented by the browse content in browse panel 204). For example, the user may select a “featured” option 312-1 to trigger a representation of only “featured” media programs in browse panel 204, a “subscription” option 312-2 to trigger a representation of only “subscription” media programs in browse panel 204, and an “at the box” option 312-3 to trigger a representation of only “at the box” media programs in browse panel 204. Filter options 312 may include additional and/or alternative user selectable options for filtering the browse content in other examples.
  • In certain examples, filter options 312 may be associated with categories of media programs. For example, each of the filter options 312 may be associated with a specific category of media programs, and a user selection of one of the filter options 312 may trigger a representation, within browse panel 204, of only media programs that are included in the category associated with the selection filter option 312. As an example, a user selection of option 312-3 may apply a filter to browse panel 204 such that the browse content 310 presented in browse panel 204 represents only media programs that belong to an “at the box” media program category, which category may be defined as media programs that are vended at one or more media vending kiosks included in a media vending kiosk system (e.g., a geographically distributed network of automated vending kiosks). As another example, a user selection of option 312-2 may apply a filter to browse panel 204 such that the browse content 310 presented in browse panel 204 represents only media programs that belong to a “subscription” media program category, which category may be defined as media programs that are accessible by a user computing device by way of data transfer over a wide area network and/or as part of a user subscription to a media service.
  • As mentioned, browse panel facility 102 may define a current browse state of browse panel 204, and assistance panel facility 104 may dynamically populate assistance panel 206 based on the current state of browse panel 204. Each of the views of GUI 300 illustrated in FIGS. 3-7 shows an example of a current browse state of browse panel 204 and media program discovery assistance content that may be dynamically selected and presented in assistance panel 206 by assistance panel facility 104 based on the current browse state of browse panel 204.
  • FIG. 3 illustrates an example of media program discovery assistance content that may be presented in assistance panel 206 when the current browse state of browse panel 204 indicates that no media program is selected in browse panel 204 and that the media programs represented in browse panel 204 are limited to an “at the box” category of media programs.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may detect that the current browse state of browse panel 204 indicates that no media program is selected in browse panel 204 and, in response, dynamically populate assistance panel 206 with media program discovery assistance content in the form of browse assistance content 314 configured to assist the user with finding media programs in browse panel 204. In certain examples, the browse assistance content 314 may include at least one media program filter tool configured for use by the user to apply at least one filter to browse panel 204.
  • In the example illustrated in FIG. 3, the browse assistance content 314 includes a set of media program filter tools configured for use by the user to define a configuration of filters to be applied to browse panel 204. As shown, the set of media program filter tools may include a kiosk distance filter tool 316, an audience selection tool 318, a mood selection tool 320, a media program duration selection tool 322, a time-of-consumption selection tool 324, and a media program format selection tool 326. The user may utilize one or more of the media program filter tools to define a configuration of filters to be applied to browse panel 204. In the example shown in FIG. 3, the media program filter tools include drop-down menus that may be configured to present one or more selectable filter parameter options to the user and from which the user may select a filter parameter for each filter.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to dynamically select one or more filter tools to be included in the browse assistance content 314 based on the current browse state of browse panel 204. In certain examples, for instance, assistance panel facility 104 may dynamically select one or more of the filter tools for inclusion in the set a filter tools based on a category of media programs represented in browse panel 204. Such filter tools may be specific to the category of media programs represented in browse panel 204. For example, in FIG. 3, the media programs represented in browse panel 204 are limited to an “at the box” category of media programs, which category may include media programs that are accessible by the user at one or more vending kiosks that vend physical copies of the media programs, and kiosk distance filter tool 316 is selected for inclusion in assistance panel 206 and is specific to the “at the box” category of media programs. The kiosk distance tool 316 may be used by the user to select a radial distance within which the user is willing to travel to visit a vending kiosk to obtain a physical copy of a media program.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to dynamically select one or more filter parameter options to be included in a filter tool drop-down menu of selectable filter parameters based on the current browse state of browse panel 204. In certain examples, for instance, in response to detecting that the current browse state of browse panel 204 indicates that the media programs represented in browse panel 204 are limited to the “at the box” category of media programs, assistance panel facility 104 may limit the filter parameter options included in the drop-down menu of media program format selection tool 326 to include only those media program formats that are vended by a vending kiosk system.
  • The set of filter tools included in browse assistance content 314 may be different for a different current browse state of browse panel 204. For example, assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to dynamically select a first set of filter tools based on a first browse state of browse panel 204 and a second set of filter tools, different from the first set of filter tools based on a second browse state of browse panel 204.
  • To illustrate one example, the current browse state of browse panel 204 illustrated in FIG. 3 may change. For instance, the user may select option 312-2 in FIG. 3 to cause browse content 310 to be filtered to represent only media programs included in the “subscription” category of media programs instead of representing media programs included in the “at the box” category of media programs. Based on this new browse state (in which the category of media programs represented in browse panel 204 has changed), assistance panel facility 104 may dynamically select a new set of filter tools for inclusion in assistance panel 206.
  • FIG. 4 illustrates a view of GUI 300 in which browse panel 204 has a current browse state that indicates that no media program is selected in browse panel 204 and that the media programs represented by browse content 402 in browse panel 204 are limited to the “subscription” category of media programs, and in which assistance panel 206 includes browse assistance content 404 that includes a set of filter tools for use by the user to define a configuration of filters to be applied to browse panel 204. As shown, the set of filter tools included in browse assistance content 404 of FIG. 4 is different from the set of filter tools included in browse assistance content 314 of FIG. 3. In FIG. 4, the set of filter tools includes the audience selection tool 318, the mood selection tool 320, the media program duration selection tool 322, the time-of-consumption selection tool 324, and the media program format selection tool 326, but omits the kiosk distance selection tool 316.
  • Based on the new browse state (in which the category of media programs represented in browse panel 204 has changed), assistance panel facility 104 may dynamically select a set of filter parameter options included in a drop-down menu of a filter tool included in browse assistance content 404. The set of filter parameter options may be different from a set of filter parameter options selected based on another browse state. For example, the media program format selection tool 326 in FIG. 4 may include a set of media program format options that are specific to the “subscription” category of media programs, which set of media program format options may be different from the set of media program format options included the set of filter parameters selected for inclusion in the view of GUI 300 shown in FIG. 3.
  • FIG. 5 illustrates an example of media program discovery assistance content that may be presented in assistance panel 206 when the current browse state of browse panel 204 indicates that a media program is selected in browse panel 204 and that the media programs represented in browse panel 204 are limited to the “at the box” category of media programs. A selector 502 indicates that a cover art image object that is included in browse content 504 and that represents a media program in browse panel 204 is currently selected in browse panel 204.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may detect that the current browse state of browse panel 204 indicates that a media program is selected in browse panel 204 and, in response, dynamically populate assistance panel 206 with media program discovery assistance content in the form of media program scrutiny assistance content 506 (“scrutiny assistance content 506”) configured to assist the user with scrutinizing the selected media program, which may help the user with deciding whether to consume the selected media program.
  • As shown in FIG. 5, the scrutiny assistance content 506 may include anchor content 508, additional content 510, and decider content 512 specific to the selected media program and positioned within assistance panel 206 as shown. In the illustrated example, the anchor content 508 includes a graphical representation of a map illustrating a geographic location of a vending kiosk that vends the selected media program, the title of the selected media program (“The Best Movie Evar”), an available format of the selected media program (“DVD”), a rating of the selected media program (e.g., “PG-13”), that closed captioning (“CC”) is supported by the selected media program, and a duration of the selected media program (e.g., “93 min”).
  • As further illustrated in FIG. 5, the additional content 510 may include additional information about the selected media program, such as cast information (e.g., “Paul Rudd, Zooey Deschanel”) and a brief synopsis (e.g., “A meteor carrying . . . ”). The additional content 510 may further include information about options for accessing the selected media program. In FIG. 5, this information indicates an address of a vending kiosk at which the selected media program is available (e.g., “7-11, 3300 Sesame St.”) and a distance from a current location of a user (e.g., the current location of a user computing device associated with the user) to the vending kiosk (“1 mi.”). The information also indicates formats of the selected media program that are available at the vending kiosk (“DVD” and “Blu-ray” formats) and rental prices for the specific formats of the selected media program.
  • As further illustrated in FIG. 5, the decider content 512 may include information configured to help the user with deciding whether to consume the selected media program. As shown, the decider content 512 may include time information (e.g., “It's just right at 90 min”) that is based on a comparison of a duration of the selected media program to durations of media programs associated with a media program consumption history of the user. Assistance panel facility 106 may generate such time information in any suitable way, such as by comparing the duration of the selected media program to durations of media programs that the user has consumed in the past and selecting time information, from a group of predefined time information options, to present in assistance panel 206 based on the comparison. For the illustrated example, the user may have a history of consuming long-length media programs such as movies within a predefined duration variation of the duration of the selected media program, and assistance panel facility 106 may suggest that the duration of the selected media program is just right for the user based on the historical media program consumption history of the user.
  • As further shown, the decider content 512 may include community rating information for the selected media program (e.g., “73% of people like it). Assistance panel facility 104 may obtain community rating information in any suitable way, such as from data representative of community feedback provided by a community of end users of a media service about the selected media program.
  • As further shown, the decider content 512 may include benefit information indicating a potential benefit to the user for consuming the selected media program. In the illustrated example, the benefit information indicates that the selected media program is part of a category of media programs labeled “Essential Romantic Comedies.” The user may have something to gain by consuming all of the media programs in this category. Accordingly, consumption of the selected media program may benefit the user in this regard.
  • As further shown, the decider content 512 may include consumption information indicating at least one other user who has consumed the selected media program. In the illustrated example, the consumption information indicates that a user named “Christina” has watched the selected media program. Assistance panel facility 104 may obtain consumption information about the selected media program in any suitable way, such as from a consumption history for the media program within a media service and/or for one or more select end users of the media service.
  • As further shown, the decider content 512 may include media program similarity information that is based on a comparison of the selected media program to a combination of at least two other media programs. Assistance panel facility 104 may generate the media program similarity information in any suitable way. For example, assistance panel facility 104 may search metadata and/or other information about media programs for attributes that match attributes of the selected media program to determine media programs that have the same or similar attributes to the selected media program. Assistance panel facility 104 may rank the identified media programs by relevance to the selected media program in accordance with any suitable predefined relevance ranking heuristic, such as based on the quantity and/or quality of matching attributes found in the search. Assistance panel facility 104 may then select two or more of the relevant media programs to create a combination that is similar to the selected media program. In the illustrated example, assistance facility 104 has determined that the media program titled “The Best Movie Evar” is similar to a combination of media programs titled “40 Year Old Virgin” and “E.T.” and populated assistance panel 206 with information indicating this similarity.
  • Any of the scrutiny assistance content 506 may include a user selectable option to access additional information and/or options related to the selected media program. For example, additional information 510 indicating available formats of the selected media program at a vending kiosk may be presented in a user selectable option that may be selected by the user to initiate a reserving of the selected media program for pickup at the vending kiosk.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to dynamically select any of the content to be included in the scrutiny assistance content 506 based on the current browse state of browse panel 204. In certain examples, for instance, assistance panel facility 104 may dynamically select specific anchor content 508 for inclusion in the scrutiny assistance content 506 based on a category of media programs represented in browse panel 204. Such content may be specific to the category of media programs represented in browse panel 204. For example, in FIG. 5, the media programs represented in browse panel 204 are limited to an “at the box” category of media programs, which category may include media programs that are accessible by the user at one or more vending kiosks that vend physical copies of the media programs, and a graphical representation of a map illustrating a geographic location of at least one vending kiosk that vends the selected media program is selected for inclusion in assistance panel 206 and is specific to the “at the box” category of media programs. The map may be used by the user to scrutinize travel options and/or the willingness of the user to travel to visit a vending kiosk to obtain a physical copy of the selected media program.
  • The content included in the scrutiny assistance content 506 may be different for a different current browse state of browse panel 204. To illustrate one example, the current browse state of browse panel 204 illustrated in FIG. 5 may change. For instance, the user may select option 312-2 in FIG. 5 to cause browse content 504 to be filtered to represent only media programs included in the “subscription” category of media programs instead of representing media programs included in the “at the box” category of media programs. Based on this new browse state (in which the category of media programs represented in browse panel 204 has changed), assistance panel facility 104 may dynamically select new scrutiny assistance content for inclusion in assistance panel 206.
  • FIG. 6 illustrates a view of GUI 300 in which browse panel 204 has a current browse state that indicates that a media program is selected in browse panel 204 and that the media programs represented by browse content 602 in browse panel 204 are limited to the “subscription” category of media programs, and in which assistance panel 206 includes scrutiny assistance content 604. As shown, the content included in scrutiny assistance content 404 of FIG. 4 is different from the content included in scrutiny assistance content 506 of FIG. 5. In FIG. 6, the scrutiny assistance content 604 includes, within anchor content 508, a playable trailer of the selected media program rather than a graphical representation of a map. In addition, the scrutiny assistance content 604 includes, within anchor content 508, information indicating a different format of the selected media program than is indicated in FIG. 5 (“HD” format rather than “DVD” format). In addition, the scrutiny assistance content 604 includes, within additional content 510, information indicating streaming format options (“HD” and “SD”) for the selected media program rather than physical copy format options (“DVD” and “Blu-ray”) indicated in FIG. 5.
  • FIG. 7 illustrates an example of media program discovery assistance content that may be presented in assistance panel 206 when the current browse state of browse panel 204 indicates that multiple media programs are selected in browse panel 204 and that the media programs represented in browse panel 204 are limited to the “at the box” category of media programs. A first selector 702 indicates that a first cover art image object that is included in browse content 704 and that represents a first media program in browse panel 204 is currently selected in browse panel 204. A second selector 706 indicates that a second cover art image object that is included in browse content 704 and that represents a second media program in browse panel 204 is also currently selected in browse panel 204.
  • Assistance panel facility 104 may detect that the current browse state of browse panel 204 indicates that multiple media programs are selected in browse panel 204 and, in response, dynamically populate assistance panel 206 with media program discovery assistance content in the form of media program scrutiny assistance content 708 (“scrutiny assistance content 708”) configured to assist the user with scrutinizing the selected media programs, which may help the user with deciding whether to consume either of the selected media programs and/or comparing the selected media programs to decide which of the selected media programs to consume or prioritize for consumption.
  • As shown in FIG. 7, the scrutiny assistance content 708 may include scrutiny assistance content 710 specific to the first media program and scrutiny assistance content 712 specific to the second media program. In the illustrated example, the scrutiny assistance content 710 specific to the first media program includes the title of the first media program (“The Best Movie Evar”), an available format of the first media program (“DVD”), a rating of the first media program (e.g., “PG-13”), that closed captioning (“CC”) is supported by the first media program, and a duration of the first media program (e.g., “93 min”). The scrutiny assistance content 710 specific to the first media program further includes time information (e.g., “It's just right at 90 min”), community rating information for the selected media program (e.g., “73% of people like it”), benefit information indicating a potential benefit to the user for consuming the selected media program (e.g., “In ‘Essential Romantic Comedies’”), consumption information indicating at least one other user who has consumed the selected media program (e.g., “Christina watched it”), and media program similarity information that is based on a comparison of the selected media program to a combination of at least two other media programs (“It's like 40 Year Old Virgin Meets E.T.”).
  • The scrutiny assistance content 712 specific to the second media program includes the title of the second media program (“Sea Connection”), an available format of the second media program (“DVD”), a rating of the second media program (e.g., “PG-13”), that closed captioning (“CC”) is supported by the second media program, and a duration of the second media program (e.g., “143 min”). The scrutiny assistance content 712 specific to the second media program further includes time information (e.g., “It's a tad long at 143 min”), community rating information for the selected media program (e.g., “54% of people like it”), benefit information indicating a potential benefit to the user for consuming the selected media program (e.g., “In ‘Essential Romantic Comedies’”), friend information indicating at least one friend of the user who has consumed or likes the selected media program (e.g., “Christina likes it”), and media program similarity information that is based on a comparison of the selected media program to a combination of at least two other media programs (“It's like Message in a Bottle Meets Ocean Voyage”).
  • The scrutiny assistance content 708 shown in FIG. 7 may assist the user with comparing the two selected media programs without obstructing or navigating away from the view of browse panel 204. Additionally or alternatively to the example illustrated in FIG. 7, assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to perform automated comparisons of attributes of the selected first and second media programs and populate assistance panel 206 with scrutiny assistance content that conveys information about the automated comparisons. In this respect, the scrutiny assistance content may compare the selected media programs one to another. For example, the scrutiny assistance content may indicate differences between time information (e.g., durations of the media programs), community rating information, benefit information, community consumption information, and/or any other information related to the media programs that may be determined by comparing attributes of the media programs.
  • The examples illustrated in FIGS. 3-7 are illustrative only. Additional or alternative media program discovery assistance content may be selected and presented in assistance panel 206 based on current browse states of browse panel 204 in other examples. System 100 may transition between displaying any of the views of GUI 300 shown in FIGS. 3-7 in response to a change in the current browse state of browse panel 204.
  • In certain examples, assistance panel facility 104 may be configured to provide an option to expand assistance panel 206 within GUI 300. Along with expanding assistance panel 206, assistance panel facility 104 may populate assistance panel 206 with additional media program discovery assistance content, which additional content may provide additional assistance to the user with scrutinizing one or more selected media programs.
  • To illustrate, in each of the views of GUI 300 illustrated in FIGS. 3-7, assistance panel 206 includes an expansion option configured to be selected by the user to initiate an expanding of assistance panel 206 in GUI 300. In FIG. 7, the expansion option is identified as reference number 714.
  • When the user selects an expansion option, assistance panel facility 104 may detect the user selection of the expansion option and respond by expanding assistance panel 206 within GUI 300, hiding browse panel 204 from view in GUI 300, and populating the expanded assistance panel 206 with additional media program discovery assistance content.
  • FIG. 8 illustrates an exemplary view of GUI 300 that includes header panel 202 and expanded assistance panel 206 displayed and positioned as shown. Expanded assistance panel 206 may include additional media program discovery assistance content that is not included in a compact assistance panel 206, such as the examples of assistance panel 206 illustrated in FIGS. 3-7. For example, the expanded assistance panel 206 may include additional transaction, community review, and/or related content information and/or options, such as those included in the expanded assistance panel 206 shown in FIG. 8 that are not included in the more compact assistance panel 206 shown in FIG. 5.
  • The expanded assistance panel 206 may include a compaction option configured to be selected by the user to initiate a compacting of the expanded assistance panel 206. For example, FIG. 8 illustrates a compaction option 802 within expanded assistance panel 206. When the user selects the compaction option 802, assistance panel facility 104 may detect the user selection of the compaction option 802 and respond by compacting the expanded assistance panel 206 (e.g., back to a compact assistance panel 206 such as those shown in FIGS. 3-7) to reveal the browse panel 204 in GUI 300 and populating the compact assistance panel 206 with media program discovery assistance content in any of the ways described herein.
  • In certain examples, assistance panel facility 104 may provide one or more tools for use by the user to customize assistance panel 206. For example, the user may select specific assistance content and/or types of assistance content to be used by assistance panel facility 104 to populate assistance panel 206. As another example, the user may define mappings between specific browse states of browse panel 204 and specific assistance content to be used by assistance panel facility 104 to populate assistance panel 206 based on those browse states. As another example, the user may define custom logic to be used by assistance panel facility 104 to generate assistance content with which to populate assistance panel 206.
  • FIG. 9 illustrates an exemplary implementation 900 of system 100. As shown, implementation 900 may include a user computing device 902 associated with a user 904. User computing device 902 may be in communication with a server system 906. In implementation 900, one or more facilities 102-106 of system 100 are implemented entirely by user computing device 902, entirely by server system 906, or distributed across user computing device 902 and server system 906. As an example, a client application installed and executing on user computing device 902 may be configured to direct user computing device 902 to perform one or more operations described herein. As another example, server system 906 may be configured to perform one or more operations described herein and direct user computing device 902 (e.g., a web browser installed and executing on user computing device 902) to present any of the GUI views described herein.
  • User computing device 902 and server system 906 may communicate using any communication platforms and technologies suitable for transporting data and/or communication signals, including known communication technologies, devices, media, and protocols supportive of remote communications, examples of which include, but are not limited to, data transmission media, communications devices, Transmission Control Protocol (“TCP”), Internet Protocol (“IP”), Hypertext Transfer Protocol (“HTTP”), Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (“HTTPS”), Session Initiation Protocol (“SIP”), Simple Object Access Protocol (“SOAP”), Extensible Mark-up Language (“XML”) and variations thereof, Real-Time Transport Protocol (“RTP”), User Datagram Protocol (“UDP”), Global System for Mobile Communications (“GSM”) technologies, Code Division Multiple Access (“CDMA”) technologies, Time Division Multiple Access (“TDMA”) technologies, Short Message Service (“SMS”), Multimedia Message Service (“MMS”), radio frequency (“RF”) signaling technologies, wireless communication technologies, Internet communication technologies, media streaming technologies, and other suitable communications technologies.
  • In certain embodiments, user computing device 902 and server system 906 may communicate via a network 908. Network 908 may include one or more networks, such as one or more wireless networks (Wi-Fi networks), wireless communication networks, mobile telephone networks (e.g., cellular telephone networks), the Internet, local area networks, wide area networks, and any other networks capable of carrying data and/or communications signals between user computing device 902 and server system 906. Communications between user computing device 902 and server system 906 may be transported using any one of the above-listed networks, or any combination or sub-combination of the above-listed networks. Alternatively, user computing device 902 and server system 906 may communicate in another way such as by one or more direct connections between user computing device 902 and server system 906.
  • Server system 906 may include one or more computing devices, such as one or more server devices remotely located from user computing device 902, configured to perform one or more of the operations described herein. User computing device 902 may include a computing device associated with (e.g., operated by) user 904 and configured to perform one or more of the operations described herein. For example, user computing device 902 may include a tablet computer, smart phone device, a set-top box device, a television device, a media player device, or any other device capable of presenting a user interface for use by user 904 (e.g., by displaying a GUI on a display screen).
  • In certain examples, server system 906 may be associated with (e.g., operated by) a provider of a media service configured to facilitate user discovery and/or consumption of media programs. In certain examples, this may include server system 906 transmitting data representative of media programs to user computing device 902 by way of data transfer over network 908 to support streaming and/or downloading of the media programs.
  • FIG. 10 illustrates an exemplary media program discovery assistance user interface method 1000. While FIG. 10 illustrates exemplary steps according to one embodiment, other embodiments may omit, add to, reorder, combine, repeat, and/or modify any of the steps shown in FIG. 10. One or more of the steps shown in FIG. 10 may be performed by system 100 and/or any implementation and/or component thereof.
  • In step 1002, system 100 displays a GUI that includes a media program browse panel and an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel, such as described herein.
  • In step 1004, system 100 detects a current browse state of the media program browse panel, such as described herein.
  • In step 1006, system 100 selects, based on the detected current browse state of the media program browse panel, media program discovery assistance content for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel, such as described herein.
  • In step 1008, system 100 populates the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with the selected media program discovery assistance content, such as described herein.
  • In step 1010, system 100 monitors for a change in the current browse state of the media program browse panel is detected. System 100 may monitor for such a change in any suitable way, including by monitoring for predefined user interactions with GUI and/or other operations associated with GUI. If a change is not detected (No; step 1010), system 100 continues to monitor in step 1010. If a change is detected (Yes; step 1010), system 100 continues performs steps 1004-1008 to dynamically update the media program discovery assistance content in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel to reflect the new browse state of the media program browse panel. Accordingly, each time the current browse state of the media program browse panel changes while GUI is displayed, system 100 may detect a new browse state of the browse panel and dynamically populate the media program discovery assistance content in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel.
  • In certain embodiments, one or more of the processes described herein may be implemented at least in part as instructions embodied in a non-transitory computer-readable medium and executable by one or more computing devices. In general, a processor (e.g., a microprocessor) receives instructions, from a non-transitory computer-readable medium, (e.g., a memory), and executes those instructions, thereby performing one or more processes, including one or more of the processes described herein. Such instructions may be stored and/or transmitted using any of a variety of known computer-readable media.
  • A computer-readable medium (also referred to as a processor-readable medium) includes any non-transitory medium that participates in providing data (e.g., instructions) that may be read by a computer (e.g., by a processor of a computer). Such a medium may take many forms, including, but not limited to, non-volatile media and/or volatile media. Non-volatile media may include, for example, optical or magnetic disks and other persistent memory. Volatile media may include, for example, dynamic random access memory (“DRAM”), which typically constitutes a main memory. Common forms of computer-readable media include, for example, a disk, hard disk, magnetic tape, any other magnetic medium, a Compact Disc Read-Only Memory (“CD-ROM”), a Digital Versatile Disc (“DVD”), any other optical medium, a Random-Access Memory (“RAM”), a Programmable ROM (“PROM”), an Erasable PROM (“EPROM”), a Flash Electrically EPROM (“FLASH-EEPROM”), any other memory chip or cartridge, or any other tangible medium from which a computer can read.
  • FIG. 11 illustrates an exemplary computing device 1100 that may be configured to perform one or more of the processes described herein. As shown in FIG. 11, computing device 1100 may include a communication interface 1102, a processor 1104, a storage device 1106, and an input/output (“I/O”) module 1108 communicatively connected via a communication infrastructure 1110. While an exemplary computing device 1100 is shown in FIG. 11, the components illustrated in FIG. 11 are not intended to be limiting. Additional, fewer, or alternative components may be used in other embodiments. Components of computing device 1100 shown in FIG. 11 will now be described in additional detail.
  • Communication interface 1102 may be configured to communicate with one or more computing devices. Examples of communication interface 1102 include, without limitation, a wired network interface (such as a network interface card), a wireless network interface (such as a wireless network interface card), a modem, an audio/video connection, and any other suitable interface.
  • Processor 1104 generally represents any type or form of processing unit capable of processing data or interpreting, executing, and/or directing execution of one or more of the instructions, processes, and/or operations described herein. Processor 1104 may execute and/or direct execution of operations as directed by one or more applications 1112 or other computer-executable instructions such as may be stored in storage device 1106 or another computer-readable medium.
  • Storage device 1106 may include one or more data storage media, devices, or configurations and may employ any type, form, and combination of data storage media and/or device. For example, storage device 1106 may include, but is not limited to, a hard drive, network drive, flash drive, magnetic disc, optical disc, RAM, DRAM, other non-volatile and/or volatile data storage units, or a combination or sub-combination thereof. Electronic data, including data described herein, may be temporarily and/or permanently stored in storage device 1106. For example, data representative of one or more applications 1112 configured to direct processor 1104 to perform any of the operations described herein may be stored within storage device 1106. In some examples, data may be arranged in one or more databases residing within storage device 1106.
  • I/O module 1108 may be configured to receive user input and provide user output and may include any hardware, firmware, software, or combination thereof supportive of input and output capabilities. For example, I/O module 1108 may include hardware and/or software for capturing user input, including, but not limited to, a keyboard or keypad, a touch screen component (e.g., touch screen display), a receiver (e.g., an RF or infrared receiver), and/or one or more input buttons.
  • I/O module 1108 may include one or more devices for presenting output to a user, including, but not limited to, a graphics engine, a display (e.g., a display screen), one or more output drivers (e.g., display drivers), one or more audio speakers, and one or more audio drivers. In certain embodiments, I/O module 1108 is configured to provide graphical data to a display for presentation to a user. The graphical data may be representative of one or more GUI views and/or any other graphical content as may serve a particular implementation.
  • In some examples, any of the facilities described herein may be implemented by or within one or more components of computing device 1100. For example, one or more applications 1112 residing within storage device 1106 may be configured to direct processor 1104 to perform one or more processes or functions associated with browse panel facility 102 and/or assistance panel facility 104. Likewise, storage facility 106 may be implemented by or within storage device 1106. Such an implementation may be referred to as a computer-implemented system, such as a computer-implemented media program discovery assistance user interface system 100 or a computing system 100.
  • To the extent the aforementioned embodiments collect, store, and/or employ personal information provided by individuals, it should be understood that such information shall be used in accordance with all applicable laws concerning protection of personal information. Additionally, the collection, storage, and use of such information may be subject to consent of the individual to such activity, for example, through well known “opt-in” or “opt-out” processes as may be appropriate for the situation and type of information. Storage and use of personal information may be in an appropriately secure manner reflective of the type of information, for example, through various encryption and anonymization techniques for particularly sensitive information.
  • In the preceding description, various exemplary embodiments have been described with reference to the accompanying drawings. It will, however, be evident that various modifications and changes may be made thereto, and additional embodiments may be implemented, without departing from the scope of the invention as set forth in the claims that follow. For example, certain features of one embodiment described herein may be combined with or substituted for features of another embodiment described herein. The description and drawings are accordingly to be regarded in an illustrative rather than a restrictive sense.

Claims (21)

What is claimed is:
1. A method comprising:
displaying, by a computing system on a display screen, a graphical user interface that includes
a media program browse panel configured to present browse content representing media programs, and
an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel presented together with the media program browse panel in the graphical user interface;
detecting, by the computing system, a current browse state of the media program browse panel;
selecting, by the computing system based on the detected current browse state of the media program browse panel, media program discovery assistance content for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel; and
populating, by the computing system, the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with the selected media program discovery assistance content.
2. The method of claim 1, wherein:
the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that no media program is selected in the media program browse panel; and
the media program discovery assistance content selected for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel comprises browse assistance content configured to assist a user with finding media programs in the media program browse panel.
3. The method of claim 2, wherein the browse assistance content comprises at least one media program filter tool configured for use by the user to apply at least one filter to the media program browse panel.
4. The method of claim 3, wherein:
the current browse state of the media program browse panel further indicates a category of media programs represented in the media program browse panel; and
the at least one media program filter tool is selected for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel based on the category of media programs represented in the media program browse panel.
5. The method of claim 4, wherein:
the at least one media program filter tool comprises a first set of media program filter tools when the category of media programs represented in the media program browse panel comprises media programs that are accessible by the user by way of at least one vending kiosk that vends physical copies of the media programs; and
the at least one media program filter tool comprises a second set of media program filter tools, different from the first set of media program filter tools, when the category of media programs represented in the media program browse panel comprises media programs that are accessible by a user computing device by way of data transfer over a wide area network.
6. The method of claim 1, wherein:
the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that a media program is selected in the media program browse panel; and
the media program discovery assistance content selected for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel comprises media program scrutiny assistance content configured to assist a user with scrutinizing the media program selected in the media program browse panel.
7. The method of claim 6, wherein the media program scrutiny assistance content comprises one of:
a graphical representation of a map illustrating a geographic location of a vending kiosk that vends the selected media program when the selected media program is accessible by the user by way of at least one vending kiosk that vends a physical copy of the media program; and
a playable trailer or a cover art image for the media program when the selected media program is accessible by a user computing device by way of data transfer over a wide area network.
8. The method of claim 6, wherein the media program scrutiny assistance content comprises at least one of:
time information that is based on a comparison of a duration of the selected media program to durations of media programs associated with a media program consumption history of the user;
community rating information for the media program;
benefit information indicating a potential benefit to the user for consuming the selected media program;
consumption information indicating at least one other user who has consumed the selected media program; and
media program similarity information that indicates a comparison of the selected media program to a combination of at least two other media programs.
9. The method of claim 1, wherein the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel comprises an expansion option configured to be selected by a user to initiate an expanding of the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel and a hiding of the media program browse panel in the graphical user interface.
10. The method of claim 9, further comprising:
detecting, by the computing system, a user selection of the expansion option; and
in response to the detecting of the user selection of the expansion option,
expanding, by the computing system, the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in the graphical user interface,
hiding, by the computing system, the media program browse panel from view in the graphical user interface, and
populating, by the computing system, the expanded adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with additional media program discovery assistance content.
11. The method of claim 1, wherein:
the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that multiple media programs are currently selected in the media program browse panel; and
the media program discovery assistance content selected for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel comprises media program scrutiny assistance content configured to assist a user with comparing the multiple media programs selected in the media program browse panel.
12. The method of claim 11, wherein the media program scrutiny assistance content compares the multiple media programs one to another.
13. The method of claim 1, further comprising:
detecting, by the computing system, a change in the current browse state of the media program browse panel to a new browse state;
selecting, by the computing system based on the detected change in the current browse state of the media program browse panel to the new browse state, new media program discovery assistance content for inclusion in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel; and
populating, by the computing system, the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with the selected new media program discovery assistance content.
14. The method of claim 13, wherein the populating of the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with the selected new media program discovery assistance content comprises replacing the selected media program discovery assistance content with the new media program discovery assistance content in the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel.
15. The method of claim 1, embodied as computer-executable instructions on at least one non-transitory computer-readable medium.
16. A method comprising:
displaying, by a computing system on a display screen, a graphical user interface that includes
a media program browse panel configured for use by a user to browse media programs represented in the media program browse panel, and
an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel presented together with the media program browse panel in the graphical user interface;
detecting, by the computing system, that no media program is selected in the media program browse panel;
dynamically populating, by the computing system in response to the detecting that no media program is selected in the media program browse panel, the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel with browse assistance content configured to assist the user in finding media programs in the media program browse panel;
detecting, by the computing system, a user selection of a media program in the media program browse panel; and
dynamically populating, by the computing system in response to detecting the user selection of the media program in the media program browse panel, the adaptive media program browse assistance panel with media program scrutiny assistance content configured to assist the user in scrutinizing the selected media program.
17. The method of claim 16, further comprising:
detecting, by the computing system, a user selection of an additional media program in the media program browse panel such that both the media program and the additional media program are selected in the media program browse panel; and
dynamically populating, by the computing system in response to the detecting of the user selection of both the media program and the additional media program in the media program browse panel, the adaptive media program browse assistance panel with additional media program scrutiny assistance content configured to assist the user in scrutinizing both the media program and the additional media program.
18. The method of claim 17, wherein the additional media program scrutiny assistance content compares the media program and the additional media program one to another.
19. The method of claim 16, embodied as computer-executable instructions on at least one non-transitory computer-readable medium.
20. A system comprising:
at least one physical computing device; and
a browse panel facility configured to direct the at least one computing device to provide a media program browse panel for display in a graphical user interface, the media program browse panel configured for use by a user to browse media programs; and
an adaptive discovery assistance panel facility configured to direct the at least one computing device to
provide an adaptive media program discovery assistance panel for display together with the media program browse panel in the graphical user interface,
detect a current browse state of the media program browse panel,
operate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in a browse assistance mode when the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that no media program is selected in the media program browse panel, and
operate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in a media program scrutiny assistance mode when the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that a media program is selected in the media program browse panel.
21. The system of claim 20, wherein the adaptive discovery assistance panel facility is further configured to direct the at least one computing device to operate the adaptive media program discovery assistance panel in a media program comparison assistance mode when the current browse state of the media program browse panel indicates that multiple media programs are selected in the media program browse panel.
US14/011,667 2013-07-15 2013-08-27 Media program discovery assistance user interface systems and methods Abandoned US20150020011A1 (en)

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US14/141,895 Active 2034-03-29 US10206004B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and methods of providing a media-on-demand-based programming channel
US14/141,908 Active 2034-03-03 US9558788B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and methods of providing user interface features for a media service
US14/141,928 Active 2034-02-12 US9378770B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and methods of facilitating installment-by-installment consumption of discrete installments of a unitary media program
US14/141,984 Active US9129656B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Theme-based methods and systems for shifting between user interface views associated with a media service
US14/142,003 Active 2035-09-07 US9794631B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and methods for facilitating planning of a future media consumption session by a user of a media program distribution service
US14/142,018 Active 2035-05-04 US10110960B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Methods and systems for facilitating media-on-demand-based channel changing
US14/141,945 Abandoned US20150019332A1 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and Methods for Providing User Interface Features Associated with Distribution of Media Programs by Way of a Network of Media Vending Kiosks

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US14/141,928 Active 2034-02-12 US9378770B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and methods of facilitating installment-by-installment consumption of discrete installments of a unitary media program
US14/141,984 Active US9129656B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Theme-based methods and systems for shifting between user interface views associated with a media service
US14/142,003 Active 2035-09-07 US9794631B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and methods for facilitating planning of a future media consumption session by a user of a media program distribution service
US14/142,018 Active 2035-05-04 US10110960B2 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Methods and systems for facilitating media-on-demand-based channel changing
US14/141,945 Abandoned US20150019332A1 (en) 2013-07-15 2013-12-27 Systems and Methods for Providing User Interface Features Associated with Distribution of Media Programs by Way of a Network of Media Vending Kiosks

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