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  1. #1
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    Announce : BBC Sounds Plugin

    I'm a fan of the BBC Sounds App experience of curated and personalised content (and search capability), I've therefore created this experimental plugin that tries to replicate this.
    It is not intended to replace the already excellent BBC Iplayer and Extras plugins , but be complementary to them, for those that would like the "Sounds" experience.

    It currently provides the overall access to
    - Search capability, the Daily picks (promoted content), Music Mixes and curated/categorised content. It also provides access to "My sounds" where your subscriptions and bookmarks can be accessed.

    You can find the plugin in the list of 3rd Party plugins within LMS.

    You will need to sign in on the LMS setting page for the plugin with your BBC account credentials. When you click apply on the settings page the system will go and get a token from the BBC that lasts for a couple of years.
    Sign in is required to use many of the personalised capabilities of the plugin.

    The plugin is open source and is managed on the following github repository : https://github.com/expectingtofly/LMS_BBC_Sounds_Plugin
    You can report an issues/feature requests here : https://github.com/expectingtofly/LM..._Plugin/issues

    [CHANGE LOG]
    0.0.1 Initial Beta Release
    0.0.2 Amended source of featured "Podcasts & More" section to match that of the BBC sounds app
    0.1.3 Included BBC Account authentication and session management providing access to "My sounds" and associated curated content
    0.1.4 Minor update to reorder the menus to fix the offset issue after sign in (and promote the "My Sounds" option nearer the top of the menu)
    0.2.5 Added the ability to subscribe/bookmark. Station schedules with 30 day schedules. New improved search
    0.2.6 Fixed the paging issues when greater than 30 items in a menu. Changed sign-in to be completely in the setting page
    1.0.0 Stable version following beta test. Includes a number of minor bug fixes since the previous version
    1.1.0 Performance improvement for menus. Sub categories introduces to category browsing
    2.0.0 Audio now handled from the plugin. "Continue Listening" Implemented
    2.0.2 Bugfixes
    2.1.0 Added BBC Sounds to the global search. Ability to unsubscribe or remove bookmark.
    2.1.1 Bugfixes
    2.5.0 Live Stations with current live programme as a seekable 'track'
    2.5.2 Bugfixes
    2.6.0 Now Playing track info on live and catch up
    2.6.5 Improved Category Browsing; Improved now playing info. Spotty Integration


    Sometimes there are experimental beta releases. These experimental test versions are available from the following repository : http://plugins.expectingtofly.co.uk/betarepo.xml
    Last edited by expectingtofly; 2020-11-27 at 07:28.

  2. #2
    Senior Member SpiderJon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by expectingtofly View Post
    ... for those that would like the "Sounds" experience.

    It currently provides the overall access to the Search capability, the Daily picks (promoted content), Music Mixes and curated/categorised content. I plan to continue to develop it to provide access to the personalised and subscribed content.

    If anyone wants to join me on this experiment and is happy to try out stuff in development...
    I'm not actually a fan of "Sounds" Ś I was too used to iPlayer Radio, and I'm too old and set in my ways ;-)

    But your plugin is worth it just for the search capability Ś thanks!

    And access to personal subscribed/bookmarked content would be terrific.

    So, very happy to try it out as you continue to develop it.
    Duet x 3, via various hi-fi. LMS on Raspberry Pi OS (Debian 10) on a Pi4.

  3. #3
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    I think this is the right sort of way to extend BBC listening - users of certain BBC features develop specific plugins to suit their needs using BBCiPlayer as the playing engine.

    The preferred interface to BBCiplayer would be the "iplayer://" URL. I presume BBC Sounds plugin eventually plays "iplayer://aod" type URLs. No live streams.

    A quick look through the code and I noticed the Sounds plugin has hooked directly into the BBCiPlayer PlaylistParser routine. This is an internal dependence which might break your plugin in the future - however usually the need to change that sort of BBCiPlayer routine is because BBC has changed internals and so has already broken BBCiPlayer.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bpa View Post
    I think this is the right sort of way to extend BBC listening - users of certain BBC features develop specific plugins to suit their needs using BBCiPlayer as the playing engine.
    Yes, I think you are right, although I guess we need to make sure that there doesn't end up a smorgasbord of plugins!

    Quote Originally Posted by bpa View Post
    The preferred interface to BBCiplayer would be the "iplayer://" URL. I presume BBC Sounds plugin eventually plays "iplayer://aod" type URLs. No live streams.
    Yes, correct, it uses "iplayer://aod".

    Quote Originally Posted by bpa View Post
    A quick look through the code and I noticed the Sounds plugin has hooked directly into the BBCiPlayer PlaylistParser routine. This is an internal dependence which might break your plugin in the future - however usually the need to change that sort of BBCiPlayer routine is because BBC has changed internals and so has already broken BBCiPlayer.
    No, I created my own playlist parser in a "BBCIplayerCompatability" module that works in a similar way to the Iplayer one, but it is self contained within the plugin.
    Last edited by expectingtofly; 2020-10-11 at 07:02.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by expectingtofly View Post
    Yes, I think you are right, although I guess we need to make sure that there doesn't end up a smorgasbord of plugins!
    It would be great to have a large smorgasbord.
    In AlienBBC we tried to have multiple parsers (for different stations using RealAudio) in same plugin but maintenance & testing proved awkward with many updates as each station changed at a different rate.

    I think having separate plugins for separate "program finding" functionality will make for more direct menus and easier maintenance.

    Since you are using "parser" in opml menus, there is a potential LMS issues with Favorites if the menu item is playable and a favorite saved from the menu item. Not sure if issue will show up with your plugin. Main symptom is: "Touch to Play" the Favorite may not work on Jiveplay/Touch/Squeezeplay . This is due to the "onselect => 'play'" not being retained. I am working through a LMS fix request.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bpa View Post
    Since you are using "parser" in opml menus, there is a potential LMS issues with Favorites if the menu item is playable and a favorite saved from the menu item. Not sure if issue will show up with your plugin. Main symptom is: "Touch to Play" the Favorite may not work on Jiveplay/Touch/Squeezeplay . This is due to the "onselect => 'play'" not being retained. I am working through a LMS fix request.
    I'm not using the OPML "parser" in that sense. I'm using a direct link to sub routine with a callback, so hopefully that issue doesn't apply.
    Last edited by expectingtofly; 2020-10-11 at 13:44.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by expectingtofly View Post
    I'm not using the OPML "parser" in that sense. I'm using a direct link to sub routine with a callback, so hopefully that listen doesn't apply.
    OK. Just figured out I've been looking at old prototype code. I followed the sourceforge link in the repo XML and assumed the file were the latest. My bad.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bpa View Post
    OK. Just figured out I've been looking at old prototype code. I followed the sourceforge link in the repo XML and assumed the file were the latest. My bad.
    oh yes! whoops, that is very old prototype code. In fact I believe it worked in an entirely different way.
    I've fixed that link, now. thanks.
    Last edited by expectingtofly; 2020-10-11 at 13:46.

  9. #9
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    FYI
    On LMS startup
    Code:
    Warning: [09:13:30.1237] "my" variable $title1 masks earlier declaration in same scope at /usr/local/slimserver/Cache/InstalledPlugins/Plugins/BBCSounds/BBCSoundsFeeder.pm line 364.
    Paul Webster
    http://dabdig.blogspot.com
    Author of "Now Playing" plugins covering Radio France (FIP etc), KCRW, Supla Finland, ABC Australia, CBC/Radio-Canada and RTE Ireland

  10. #10
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    Hi, this is an interesting development - particularly with the ability to browse by category. Having said that, if I browse by category - say, Drama, the results which are returned exceed 3,000 - too many to browse through. The official Sounds website just lists the latest episode with the option to view others. Also, it allows browsing by sub-categories, e.g. Soaps, Crime, Thrillers & etc. Including this functionality in the plugin would be tremendous.

    Thanks for your work to date! I am also one who does not particularly like the Sounds site (I preferred it when radio was included in iPlayer) but use the search facilities to browse available content.

    Steve

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