[mythtv] podcast question

Fred Squires fsquires at gmail.com
Mon Jul 7 18:35:39 UTC 2008

On Sun, Jul 6, 2008 at 4:33 PM, Kawayanan <kawayanan at gmail.com> wrote:
> First of all, please bear with me.  I'm new around here.  As a rarity
> however, what I want is within my ability to fix.  I just want input before
> I go off and do something stupid.
> I have searched the mailing lists for both mythtv-users and mythtv-dev.  I
> have seen some things discussed, but not much concluded.  I just wanted to
> run things by everyone to get feedback before I start doing something dumb
> or useless.
> I want to download and play podcasts.  Nothing to fancy, just downloads, not
> streaming audio or video.  I am fully aware that MythStream should be able
> to do this.  I must admit however that I tried to figure out how to get it
> to do what I wanted and quickly gave up.  I'm reasonably good with
> computers, and I know if I can't do it quickly, there is no way I can expect
> my wife to deal with it.  I'm sure MythStream is very powerful, and clearly
> does lots of useful stuff, but I just want a simple automated download.
> Meaning I give it a URL, tell it how often to check, and that's it.  It
> seemed much easier to set up something else.  Anyway, that's what I did.  I
> used bashpodder (very small and simple bash script - its only ~20 lines of
> code - http://lincgeek.org/bashpodder/).  The first podcasts I played with
> were audio (mp3's).  I simply put the script in a directory called
> "podcasts" in the MythMusic storage directory.  I set a cron job to run
> bashpodder every night.  Done and simple.  My newly downloaded podcasts are
> recognized and played by MythMusic (after rescanning).  I assume that the
> same thing can easily be done for video podcasts (just run bashpodder in the
> MythVideo storage area).
> Anyway, here are my thoughts and questions:
> 1)  Is there a command line way of telling MythMusic (and MythVideo) to scan
> for new files?  After the podcasts are automatically downloaded, I have to
> rescan my collection for them to show up.  It would be nice to be able to
> have the cron job rescan the library for me after new files were added.
> 2)  I view my music collection by directory (my music collection was already
> set up nicely that way).  I made a "podcast" directory within the MythMusic
> storage area, so they are also easy to find.  Bashpodder dumps new podcasts
> in directories based on the day they are downloaded.  First, I am planning
> on editing bashpodder to drop new files in directories based on what podcast
> they came from.  That would work better with my audio library setup.
> Second, I am thinking of editing bashpodder to keep only a set number of
> files per podcast.  By this, I mean that if I tell it to keep only 4 files
> for a certain podcast, it will delete the oldest file when it downloads a
> fifth (kind of like I do in MythTV for some series - keep at most 3 episodes
> and delete the oldest if there are more, etc.).  Any thoughts on these
> plans?  I can shell script and perl script well enough, so all this is
> doable for me.  I just want to know if anyone knew any reasons this would be
> a dumb idea.  I might rewrite the whole thing in perl, because thats what I
> know best.
> 3)  In an ideal world, I would make it so that one could add new podcasts to
> be downloaded from within MythTV.  I don't mind using vi to edit a URL list,
> but it might be nice for others if it was within MythTV.  What I was
> thinking was one setup page that allowed you to add (or remove) podcasts by
> editing the URL, subdirectory you want the file in, and the maximum number
> of "episodes" you would want to keep.  I looked briefly at the plugin
> documentation.  It looks like everything is in C (which I don't know much
> in).  I figured that what I was thinking was pretty simple, and I could
> probably figure out the plugin setup if I set out to do it.  Would this seem
> reasonable to people as a plugin?  Would it be worth making the plugin, or
> just leave it command line for my own use?  Would calling a perl or shell
> script in a plugin (or setting a cron job) be bad form or against any mythTV
> conventions?
> Thanks for your time and comments.
> kawayanan

I would love to see a good podcast plugin.  Something that would
download the podcasts and treat them like recordings.
It should add them to the recording list and expire recordings just
like a normal tv recording would.  Using the same/similar recording
setup screen would also be great.
I've thought about doing something like this myself, but I haven't had
the time recently, and I'm not sure if my coding skills are quite up
to par right now.
Is it possible to input a recording of a certain size directly and
have the backend treat it as a normal recording?  I'm thinking I could
look up the size, then tell the backend about the new recording so it
would autoexpire anything necessary, then download the recording.
I typically download and watch podcasts on my laptop, but doing this
though mythtv would be much more convenient.

It was supposed to be so Easy.

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