[mythtv] BrowserBased setup

Lennart Sorensen lsorense at csclub.uwaterloo.ca
Tue Nov 23 21:52:05 UTC 2010

On Tue, Nov 23, 2010 at 10:12:21PM +0200, Per Lundberg wrote:
> I saw the web page
> http://svn.mythtv.org/trac/wiki/TaskBrowserBasedSetup today.
> Interesting news! I find the current (0.24) way of setting things up
> in MythTV is quite lacking in many aspects, so I think there's great
> possibilities for an improved "user experience" as this part of MythTV
> is being reworked.
> Has there been any discussions taking place as to what the chosen
> platform for this would be? I'm thinking in terms of web server
> platform (PHP, CGI, whatever). Personally, I'd definitely give the
> Silverlight (or even Flash, but I have more experience with
> Silverlight) platform my vote. It is a much nicer environment for
> writing "real" web applications than e.g. PHP with a ton of
> Javascript.

PHP happens to be a lovely language for web interfaces.  Certainly flash
and silverlight are horrible ideas that simply prevents a lot of people
from accessing the interface.  That is NOT user friendly.  It also
seriously reduces the number of people that could actually work on it
(who has flash or silverlight creation tools around anyhow?)

> On the downside of this, of course, Silverlight doesn't work so well
> in a Linux environment yet. Still, I think there are some interesting
> points in this. You write Silverlight applications in C# (or VB.NET),
> and C# is a whole lot more similar to the C++ in which the rest of
> MythTV is written than e.g. PHP. PHP is really a web scripting
> language in which no "real" applications should be written; it lacks
> the fundamental architecture for such things (IMHO, of course). No
> (strong) typing, no compilation... hey, even Java is a much better
> option for writing "real" applications than PHP, Python and similar.
> At least, it's strongly typed and compiled.

Having recently tried to get silverlight running on linux to use a stupid
application written by a "Microsoft Partner" (they were very proud of
that fact), it is currently hopeless.  Clearly silverlight is not
an option.  Also who writes C# or VB code?

> Anyway, regardless of the platform chosen, I think the important part
> here is to make the setup process much more "simple". I mean, it
> shouldn't have to be much more difficult to configure a (basic) MythTV
> setup than to set up your regular STB, really. I imagine we could have
> a "wizard" (or perhaps more correctly called "basic" or "simple") mode
> for setting the standard things up. Then, for people who need to e.g.
> tweak the address of their DiSEqC switch, we can have an option for
> viewing these more advanced things. For the rest of us, even having
> this configuration option makes us confused and worried that this
> setting could be incorrect...

It could be simpler than it is, but some things you do have to answer
after all.  Remote controls seem to be among the messier things to setup
at the moment, and mythtv-setup doesn't seem to do anything for those.

> It should Just Work<tm>. Like a Mac. :-)
> (For the record, I don't even own a Mac; this is being written in
> Iceweasel on a Debian setup)

Well a STB works out of the box because it is a known configuration
with software pre installed to match than configuration.  Of course that
is simple.

Len Sorensen

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