******************************Note From The Blogger*******************************
On the Couch will be a weekly blog, each week featuring a different member of the Team/Community. They have a list of questions they can select to answer and a brief section at the end, named Speak Out!, where they can ramble on needlessly if they wish. This blog will be published each Monday (Yes, I am late for the first one, my apologies)
On the Couch: Dadeo
How did you first find MediaPortal?
Google - looking to replace my VCR and no DVR was available here at the time.
**** Note from the MediaPortal Team****
We are proud to announce a new line of blogs from MediaPortal. I know, I know… you have been itching to hear us ramble on, and we are now delivering 4 monthly and 1 weekly blogs to help slake your thirst for not so random or useless information about MediaPortal. The 4 monthly blogs are:
- Team Update
- While You Were Sleeping: Skins
- What Sayeth You?
- While You Were Sleeping: Plugins
The blogs for “While You Were Sleeping” will cover updates and births/deaths of various plugins or skins, each one being covered every other week. The “Team Update” blog is just to keep everyone current with our visions and progress (as well as the occasional failure). “What Sayeth You” will cover a feature, plugin or skin and offer users a chance to speak out on the good, the bad and the ugly.
A weekly blog will also be released this Monday called “On the Couch” where we feature a developer or skinner and get the skinny on their likes, dislikes and history. This week Dadeo will be on the couch, so be looking for that this Monday.
And now… Onto the blog
While You Were Sleeping: Plugins
Hello, fellow MePo’rs! Lyfesaver here, and I just wanted to fill you in on some things that you may (or may not) have missed. What could you have possibly have missed? Oh, I don’t know. Did you know that you don’t have to leave MediaPortal to get new plugins and skins, or update your current ones? Did you know that due to Darwin’s “Natural Selection” MyMusicVideos and mVids are now extinct? Perhaps you have not heard about the new plugin that will fire lasers at any right handed polar bears that invade your home? Okay that last one is not real, but how cool would that be? Okay, okay let’s take a look at them before I let my imagination run away! (Too late)
Youtube.fm – With skin changes galore this plugin now offers a façade view, changed some default images and allowing for image cache remaking, all allowing for a more beautiful plugin. Functionality has also been bolstered with the addition of info from Billboard, updating the YouTube API and many new menu items.
youtube.fm Rev 0.8.0.199 (10-28-2011)
OnlineVideos & SubCentral – These two wonderful plugins have had their integration with other skins and plugins drastically increased offering subs, trailers and even full movies just one or two clicks away.
SubCentral Rev 188.8.131.52 (10-26-2011)
OnlineVideos Rev 0.33.0.1 (9-19-2011)
Trakt - With many bugs fixes, improved functionality and added support for the German language, this plugin should be more popular than ever.
Trakt Rev 1.2.1 (10-24-2011)
Extensions – Now you can browse for new plugins as well as update current ones all from within MediaPortal. The MePo GUI has just got kicked into overdrive with this plugin, giving more control of your choice of plugins and keeping everyone up to date. DO NOT MISS THIS ONE!
Extensions – Rev 184.108.40.206 (10-13-2011)
IMDb+ (Plugin and scraper) – Are you a MovingPictures user? Then you will definitely want to give a gander to this little jewel. This will give many new options to movie lovers like true native language support for many popular languages, grouping and naming of trilogies and other “box-set” releases, true naming rules and many others. While the scraper does the bulk of the work, the paired plugin allows for adjusting of options in the GUI as well as tools like refreshing current movies to the IMDb+ scraper.
IMDb+ Rev 220.127.116.11 (10-24-2011)
mvCentral – OH NO, not another music video plugin? Yes that is exactly what mvCentral will offer you, but with much more functionality and flare than any previous plugin. Using other popular plugins as a base for mvCentral, the developer has taken great strides. Already more functional than any previous music video plugin mvCentral raises the bar. And let’s face it, why look at visualizations when jamming out, when you can watch the video!
mvCentral Rev 0.5.0.166 (10-23-2011)
Around the corner:
Wi-Fi Manager – Now you can connect, reconnect or switch wireless networks all from inside MediaPortal. This handy little plugin will help offer a more “all-in-one” type experience for all users.
Wi-Fi Manager Rev 18.104.22.168 (10-2-2011)
Keep an eye out for changes to the plugins, specially IMDb+, Trakt and mvCentral as they are updated multiple times each week. Also with the release of Follw.It’s API yesterday, a future plugin and increased integration is well….. right around the corner.
I hope you have found this information useful, and I would like to let all our developers/skinners know to PM me so your updates or new plugins won’t be missed in future blogs.
FACT: Did you know that if you rearrange MediaPortal you get “Idea Ram Plot”?
My Films 5 released - a whole new trend for MediaPortal 1.2.0 extensions!
My Films is one of the oldest plugins for MediaPortal. Almost two years ago, many devoted users posted in our forums asking about "The Future of My Films?" Unfortunately, the original developer, Zebons, was unable to complete the new version due to time constraints. Luckily Guzzi took up the torch and carried My Films to the Olympic stadium! Guzzi not only completed the development Zebons had started, but added a host of new features that set new trends for the future of MediaPortal extensions. Now isn't that what open source is all about?
What is My Films?
My Films combines the powerful database management features of movie catalog software with the great media centre features of MediaPortal, offering you the best of both!
The plugin is designed primarily for film buffs who have spent considerable time developing an extensive movie catalog, not only of files stored locally on your PC (server, NAS or client, etc.), but DVDs/Blu-ray Discs as well. Thus, the concept and architecture is entirely different than other video plugins.
Seven different popular movie catalog applications are supported:
- Ant Movie Catalog (AMC)
- eXtreme Movie Manager (XMM)
- DVD Profiler
- Eax Movie Catalog
- Personal Video Database (PVD)
- Movie Collector
Ant Movie Catalog (AMC) "is a free (really free, i.e. the source code is available) program made to manage your collection of movies on DVD, CD (VideoCD, DivX, ...) and tapes." It is the primary catalog supported in My Films because it uses an XML database. Thus, updates in either AMC or My Films are made to the same XML database and automatically display in both applications instantly.
You can continue to use your existing movie catalog in any way you wish, but now you can also use it in MediaPortal with My Films. My Films incorporates many advanced movie catalog features into MediaPortal. Best of all, you don't need to rescan your movie catalog data, or ever rescan it again!
If you would like to try out My Films but have never used MediaPortal, please see the MediaPortal Setup guide in the My Films Wiki. It provides instructions to setup MediaPortal quickly and easily to use My Films, as well as any special setup considerations for the movie catalog you use.
What if I don't have a movie catalog?
You can still use My Films to import all your films and create a movie catalog which you can use either in My Films, or in Ant Movie Catalog as well. Of course, previous experience with movie catalogs or databases is helpful - the better your data - the better your results will be. Do you tag your music? The concept is similar, if you want the best results, you usually need to standardize and customize your data.
See the My Films listing in the MediaPortal Downloads Repository. Find out all the features in the extensive My Films Wiki, or continue reading to learn about the many trend setting features in My Films 5. Press the icon in any section below to access more information from the Wiki about that feature.
MyAnime2 is now supported by the Trakt plugin (thanks a lot ltfearme)
Trakt TV is a great way of keeping tabs on what your friends are watching and getting ideas on other great shows to watch among other things.
To get the most out of Trakt you will need to get the latest version of MediaPortal (MP 1.2RC), as well as the Trakt and MyAnime2 plugins.
Come join Lyfesaver74 & DieBagger as MediaPortal takes to the air, live at a California AM radio station on Tuesday August 23rd at 9am PST.
Wake up early or go to bed late, do whatever it takes to take part in MediaPortal's first live radio interview. Tech Today with Ken May has invited us to sit down and talk with them about the various facets of MediaPortal. You can listen live over the air at 1400 AM KKZZ or online at http://kenmay.net/. A pod cast will be available shortly after the show is over.
Listeners are encouraged to call in with questions, tips or just to talk about MediaPortal. If you are in the US and have access to free nationwide calling, then call us live on the air at 805-639-0008. If you are outside the US and wish to participate then simply log on to facebook, navigate to Team-MediaPortal page and post questions for us on our wall.
How many people have heard of MediaPortal?
Many people have heard of Windows Media Center, or other media center software, but few realize MediaPortal offers a free alternative, with more features and options than any other Windows media center available today.
Even those who have heard about MediaPortal are often not aware it has grown by leaps and bounds in the past year or two and has become a very stable, feature-rich application. The look, performance, capabilities and ease of use have all improved dramatically.
It's time to change public awareness about MediaPortal! As I reported in the Inside Scoop 1.11: Team Top Ten Countdown last December, we are beginning a promotion campaign in 2011. A new tri-fold brochure about MediaPortal is already available on our Promotional Materials page. Click images to enlarge.
In addition, Lyfesaver74 has recently joined Team MediaPortal as our first Public Relations member. He successfully showcased MediaPortal at the Big Design 2011 Conference in Dallas, Texas. You can read his report Dallas Tours MP at Big Design 2011. He has many ideas and lots of enthusiasm, which I am sure you will hear more about in the coming weeks and months.
How can you help? Read on and find out!
Howdy from Texas, y'all!!
MediaPortal (MP) put in its first trade show appearance last weekend at the Big Design 2011 conference in Dallas, TX. With the help of many MediaPortal users & the friendly staff at Big Design, it was a big success. It was held at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Addison, a suburb of Dallas, and provided table space in the main hall. Each conference room was located off the hall giving heavy traffic to each of the exhibitors throughout the day. MediaPortal was located at the top of the stairs, right outside of the keynote conference room. With such a great location the MP table had extremely high visibility and was able to spend a lot of time catering the curiosity of others. Out of roughly 150 attendees, 40 vendors and numerous conference and hotel staff, over 200 paid a visit to the MediaPortal table.
The most shocking thing to me was how much fun I had. I really enjoyed meeting the other vendors and learning about their products/services. The most enjoyable moments were when demoing MP for visitors. Some were truly amazed by what MediaPortal could do and seeing them realize MP's personal potential was thoroughly pleasing. I hope others consider this if they ever think about running a booth for MP. It was a really good time and we reached quite a lot of people, some of whom installed MediaPortal overnight then came back the second day to chat about MP.
aMPdroid was almost as big a hit as MP itself because in the US if it's mobile, then it's hot. Everyone wants an app for that, and Diebagger has delivered. We were able to show off aMPdroid 0.7 at the show with great success on a 10" ePad. Everyone thought the remote control function was neat, but were more impressed when I talked about the then forthcoming version 0.8 with streaming. Some were so excited about the idea of being able to watch home local content on their mobile without having to pay a 3rd party service, that they were nearly doing backflips.
As you can imagine, Big Design's main focal issue was design itself. A lot of comments and feedback were left by visitors on how MediaPortal looked and felt, 95% of which were positive. Some left thinking that they could skin MP while others left thinking that they could help develop it in some way. One visitor offered to recommend a friend to help with ATSC coding for live TV in the US.
I believe the show was a great way to help spread the popularity of MediaPortal and cannot wait until my next chance to do so again. I encourage other MP users to do a show in their area, as I am sure you will have a great time and be a huge benefit to MediaPortal itself.