[mythtv] Commercial replacement instead of skipping

Hal Lightwood hal at lightwood.ca
Wed Feb 28 15:55:31 UTC 2007

Great discussion everyone, thank you for all your replies.  Yes, I agree, as
most have pointed out, this is not something most Myth users would want as
most of us do not ever watch Live TV, including myself.  This is only a
feature that would be occasionally used for Live events such as sports or
awards shows or to allow children to watch Live TV unsupervised without
worrying about them being exposed to commercials.  Delaying watching for 10
minutes would be acceptable and you would never "catch up" because it would
always be 10 minutes behind.

Craig, you suggested that this can be done but would require pressing a
button to switch back and forth. Ideally it would be automatic, especially
if this is being used when children might be watching TV unsupervised, I
don't want them to see commercials but I wouldn't trust a 5 year old to
actually press the button.

Dave has suggested that the flag at the start of a commercial is all that
would be needed thus negated the requirement to run 10 minutes delay as
well, does anyone else agree with that?

If this can be done I am prepared to offer a bounty for it as well!

On 2/28/07, Dave Oxley <dave at daveoxley.co.uk> wrote:
> I think there's a trick being missed here. If you're watching live tv
> and an advert comes on and when it does you hit a button to switch to
> different content, then this can be used as the flag for the start of
> the commercial rather than the automated commflag. Well, you may want it
> to run 3 or 4 seconds either side of when the button was pressed to work
> out the accurate position, but you certainly won't need the end of the
> commercial in order to work out (or validate) the beginning of the
> commercial.
> Dave.
> Craig Boline wrote:
> > Would either of these concepts solve the issue -
> >
> > 1: There could be a way to play mythvideo items, and prior recordings
> though picture in picture - then switch back when the commercial is over.
> >
> > 2: Same sort of idea as above, except the commercial flagger switches
> back when it finds the end of the commercial. For example - you are watching
> mythbusters... a commercial shows up and you hit a button on the remote and
> start watching your other content.  Then the commercial flagger follows
> behind. As soon as it logs a commercial (begin and end), Mythfrontend
> notices and asks if you would like to switch back to your mythbusters.  This
> continues, when a commercial shows up - hit the button - continue where you
> left off on your alternative content - switch back...
> >
> > Thanks,
> > Craig.
> >
> >
> > On Tue, 27 Feb 2007 15:23:55 -0800, Brad DerManouelian <
> myth at dermanouelian.com> wrote:
> >> On Feb 27, 2007, at 3:14 PM, Peter Schachte wrote:
> >>
> >>> Brad DerManouelian wrote:
> >>>> On Feb 27, 2007, at 1:00 PM, Hal Lightwood wrote:
> >>>>> Hi Brad,  thanks for the reply.  Watching LiveTV with a 15 minute
> >>>>> delay isn't too bad, but do you think we could alter commflag so
> >>>>> that it could replace the commercials instead of skip them?  If
> >>>>> commflag takes alot of CPU we'll just make sure we have a very fast
> >>>>> computer so it can do it quickly.  What do you think?
> >>>> I don't see the use case here. If you watch the program delayed
> >>>> enough for the commflagger to do its job, there is no time to watch
> >>>> something else. It just skips right to the next scene of your
> >>>> program.
> >>> I think Hal's point is that by *replacing* commercials with some other
> >>> equal-length programming while watching, and assuming the
> >>> commflagger could run
> >>> at real-time speed, you would be in a steady state.  So you
> >>> wouldn't have to be
> >>> 8 minutes ahead for every 30 minutes of program, you'd just have to
> >>> be far
> >>> enough ahead for the commflagger's output to be available.
> >>> Essentially, as I
> >>> understand the OP, you'd just be watching slightly delayed from
> >>> real time, and
> >>> when a commercial came on, rather than skipping over it, myth would
> >>> show some
> >>> other programming until the commercial finished.
> >>>
> >>> Sounds like a good idea to me.  It would make watching live TV much
> >>> more
> >>> palatable if you could be watching some other recording during the
> >>> commercials.
> >>>  But I don't think many myth users, and particularly myth
> >>> developers, use live
> >>> TV much, so I don't think anyone will be rushing to implement it.
> >>>
> >>> Hal, I would suggest adding this to the feature wishlist on the
> >>> myth wiki.
> >>> Probably
> >>> http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/index.php/Feature_Wishlist_%
> >>> 28Frontend_Addons%29#LiveTV_.2F_View_Recording
> >>>
> >>> would be the most appropriate place.
> >> I understand his intent, I just don't understand how it would even
> >> possibly be implemented considering the fact that the comm flagger
> >> takes into account both what it sees at the start and end of a
> >> commercial break to determine if it's a valid commercial break. If
> >> you run it real-time, there's no end yet, so it would never tell you
> >> there is a commercial until it was over. Even if you could somehow
> >> predict that your commercial start flag is valid without seeing the
> >> end of the commercial, you'd then need a way to pick what to watch
> >> while the commercial was playing. Seems like a whole lot of work just
> >> to avoid not waiting a little while longer to watch your program.
> >>
> >> I guess I'm just confused why people still insist on letting program
> >> directors control their personal time. I don't even think about what
> >> time programs are on any more. I just watch when I feel like it.
> >>
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