when you start it up without specifying a file or url (which causes it to immediately start playing that file), you get this:
as you can see it asks what you want to do, including listing the last few videos you watched. this prevents me from have to jump immediately to the play menu and makes it obvious how to use it. and once you pick what you want to do you get a very sensible window:
when the video starts a little overlay appears in one corner asking if you like it to resize the window the size of the video and if you ignore it for a few seconds it just slides back out of the window.
the toolbar has a play button, a play meter and a full screen toggle. if you go into DVD mode you get a little menu toggle button too. that's it. no volume, no quality adjusters (there's a dialog for that available under the setting menu though), no system tray icon, no playlists, no forward/back/up/down/inside out buttons ...
it just plays video. if i had to vote for a video player for KDE4, codeine would be it.
now the configuration dialog is a bit intense, as it seems to let you set just about everything imaginable in xine (the media engine it uses). but the only reason i know what it looks like is because i checked it just before writing this blog entry. up till now i've never had a single reason to configure this app because it balances features and control with sensible defaults. for me, this is video player perfection =)
so max howell, i take my hat off to you and send my gratitude for codeine. =)