[mythtv] Use callsign for scheduling

Tako Schotanus quintesse at palacio-cristal.com
Sat Apr 17 05:58:04 EDT 2004

Bruce Markey wrote:

> Tako Schotanus wrote:
> ...
>> But what if you want to change that callsign later on? Reasons might be
>> as simple as wanting to change "BBC1" to "BBC 1" or because a channel
>> decides to change their name. Will a change like that somehow mess up
>> the system? Or will it just continue to work?
> Astute question. For any record rules that specify a station
> (Single, Timeslot, Weekslot and Channel) that were created for
> "BBC1" they would not match a channel with "BBC 1". FindOne and
> All would not be affected. You would need to add new record
> rules and could remove the old record rules on the Recording
> Priorities page.
> This has always been a problem in another form and while this
> is a step backward, there are at least two steps forward.

Ok, but this is something which could easily be rectified by having a 
seperate "short display name" and callsign, wouldn't it? Or just keep 
the curent callsign for display purposes like it is used now and 
introduce a new "stationid".

> In versions up through 0.14, when you run setup to clear or
> change your video source, the new sourceid is incremented and
> all of your existing record rules no longer match :-(. Also,
> if a cable provider changes the channel for a station, the
> chanid for it's shows would no longer match. Neither of these
> is a problem if the callsign is used. In fact, I've already had
> a channel change and saw that all the record rules still work.

Exactly the reason why I use the setup as little as possible to make 
changes and prefer to tweak the database directly ;-)

> So, no, you don't want to go around making little changes if
> you don't have to.

Hmm this seems to be even more reason to add a seperate callsign and 
stationid, display names should have _no_ effect on the workings of the 
system whatsoever IMO. You could even make them exactly the same while 
setting it up so people don't have to do even more tweaking.

One of the reasons why we might be more inclinded to make name changes 
than US-users is the fact that lots of channels here don't _have_ a 
callsign. And I'm not talking about official ones, they don't even have 
unofficial ones. I heard it said before that wherever they went in the 
world there was always something, eg. BBC1, BBC2, MTV whatever. But here 
in The Netherlands there certainly are channels which have no known 
callsign. If I would say that I was going to watch TCN nobody here would 
know that I was going to watch The Cartoon Network, the same for The 
Discovery Channel (people might just call it "Discovery"), National 
Geographic and maybe even some others. Of course I could make up a 
callsign, or just use something that fits in 20 characters no problem 
here. The problem for me is more that I might be _very_ inclinded to 
make changes to these names. Some names are just too long so they mess 
up the displays in the programming guide so I might at some point decide 
to abbreviate them somehow (Hmm Discovery doesn't fit... damn Discovry 
doesn't either, finally Discvry does). Even if you will hardly have to 
do this very often the point is that I would expect to be able to change 
it without having to worry about side-effects.

> Any change that breaks record rules is a bad thing. For the
> environment that I'm in, not using the chanid is a big step
> forward. I could change cable providers, switch to satellite,
> the provider could change the channel they use for a station
> or I might need to change my video source for some other reason.
> Any of these would break chanid but "KVBC" will be "KVBC" until
> they go out of business.

I understand the need for this change perfectly, the only thing I would 
suggest is to take a look again at "overloading" the meaning/use of the 
callsign field.

>> Actually I can think of a some examples where people could get confused.
>> Some channels have changed their name so often that nobody knows what to
>> call them anymore ;-)
>> (not trying to say anything here, just thought it was a funny anecdote)
> I was kind of alluding to that in an earlier message. If a
> new station is added or an old one is removed by the provider,
> there is no question. But sometimes a station changes. A few
> months ago, many of us got TNN (The Nashville Network). There
> are now some successful stations for women only so TNN decided
> to try to be a station for men called SpikeTV. Well, they
> are on the same channel and it's the same company but is it
> the same station? They have some of the same programs as they
> did before but they were promoting all of their new shows.

Well here in The Netherlands this has happened a couple of times with 
one particular sation. Politics mostly about who owned the rights to the 
name or something, I won't even try to pretend that I understand the 
reasons for it, but they did change names and back again. (and I still 
meet people who call it by its old name)

> If myth was using callsigns for record rules at the time, I
> don't know if I'd change the callsign but I think I would.
> Realize that if a station was flaky about changing their
> name you would not be compelled to keep up. You could give
> it a generic name that you are happy with and stick to it.

Again, I don't expect a system to adjust itself to whatever flakey 
broadcaster in the world (although in my example I was talking about one 
of the larger commercial ones, so not some tiny local station) thinks of 
because arguably this will happen only in very rare circumstances, but 
that's why I suggested to just keep the callsign as-is and introduce a 
seperate stationid, it will prevent the overloading of the callsign 
field and all this won't be a problem.

But maybe there is a very good reason for using the callsign for this?


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