Your Digital Media Has Never Looked So Good

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tal
Topic Author
Posts: 318
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Location: Hamburg, Germany
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VisualMR: PocketPC or Windows-PC as a remote control

Fri Aug 05, 2005 11:14 am

Hi,

lately I've been working on a remote control application based on the new RCP protocol...

Update
As can be read in this thread there had been lots of updates in the mean time. Therefore I revised this initial post so that new readers know what VisualMR is all about :)

What is VisualMR
VisualMR is designed to be an easy to setup and use remote control for your SoundBridges. The user-interface is designed to match closely the one you find on your SoundBridge (but of course taking advantage of the big screen).

With VisualMR you can control your SoundBridge from any Windows PC or PocketPC: Browse your music library, rearranging the song queue, search for a song, artist,..., control the volume, power on/off the SoundBridge any many other things. Of course the current song details are displayed, too.

Other things to note:
- VisualMR works with any music server your SoundBridge supports (like WMC, iTunes, firefly, UPnP compliant servers including Rhapsody).
- VisualMR is skinnable so that you can customize its look
- VisualMR on a WiFi PocketPC makes a wireless remote control for all your SoundBridges (I even know of some users who bought a PocketPC just because of that :) )

More about VisualMR including setup instructions, full documentation and download can be found here:
http://www.tl-it.de/media/pages/visualmr.php


Cheers
Thorsten
Last edited by tal on Mon May 15, 2006 1:16 am, edited 4 times in total.
Easily control your SoundBridge from your Windows PC or wireless PocketPC with VisualMR
 
Steve Starr
Posts: 48
Joined: Sun Feb 13, 2005 9:31 am

Sat Aug 06, 2005 4:12 am

hi,
works great, thanks. Is there a way to store the ip address so that I can just put two SB addresses in and then be able to control either by just alternating from one to another if you get what I mean.
 
tal
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Sun Aug 07, 2005 3:34 am

Steve Starr wrote:
hi,
works great, thanks. Is there a way to store the ip address so that I can just put two SB addresses in and then be able to control either by just alternating from one to another if you get what I mean.

Great to hear it is working for you :)

Currently the application only supports one SoundBridge at a time (mainly because I only have one :( ). On a PC you can work around it by having two folders with two copies of BridgeControl. Since the application stores its preferences where the executable is located you can this way have a remote control app for each of your SoundBridges. You can even run them simultaneously to control mutiple SoundBridges at the same time.

On the PocketPC however this isn't that easy since apllications are not terminated when closed and only one copy of an application can run at a time.

On my todo list there already is an updated connect-screen with a list of SoundBridges so that you can easily switch between them. Maybe I will manage to upload a new version of BridgeControl next week-end which will aready support this.

Thorsten
 
Steve Starr
Posts: 48
Joined: Sun Feb 13, 2005 9:31 am

Sun Aug 07, 2005 11:42 am

Thanks for all your hard work
will look forward to the next update
Steve
 
tal
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Sat Aug 13, 2005 3:38 am

Steve Starr wrote:
will look forward to the next update

I just uploaded V0.3 which now features a list of SoundBridges to select from.

Additionally new features are (apart from some optimisations) extended status display (song format, bitrate, repeat, shuffle) and controls for repeat and shuffle.

As last time you can download it from my homepage:
http://www.tl-it.de/media/pages/bridgecontrol.php

Thorsten
 
DarrellEHill
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Sep 07, 2004 11:53 am

Nice

Fri Aug 19, 2005 3:59 pm

Thorsten,

I just wanted to chime in, to say THANKS for sharing your work, good job this is a very nice interface for the SB.


Thanks again,


Darrell
 
mjturner
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Apr 30, 2005 3:37 am
Location: London
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Sat Aug 20, 2005 8:43 am

Its neat - very impressive. Its nice to see people using the interfaces Roku have been adding to such good effect.

If you're accepting feature requests:

Could you get it to display the internet radio station track details, as the SB now displays it. At the moment it only shows the station name.

Oh and if you feel like replicating the entire UI of the SB on a pocketPC feel free ;) It'd be so cool!

Mike
 
tal
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Sun Aug 21, 2005 11:52 am

mjturner wrote:
Its neat - very impressive.

Mike, Darrell - thank you! Its great to get such positive feedback :D

mjturner wrote:
If you're accepting feature requests:

Sure, its always good to hear what can be improved!
But I won't promise that I'll implement everything that is requensted :wink:

mjturner wrote:
Could you get it to display the internet radio station track details, as the SB now displays it. At the moment it only shows the station name.

Strange, for me it already does. I tried it with smoothjazz.com and everything displayed on the SB is visible in BridgeControl. What radio station do you use? Please give the URL, too, and I will look into it.

mjturner wrote:
Oh and if you feel like replicating the entire UI of the SB on a pocketPC feel free ;) It'd be so cool!

My plan is to provide all of the SB's UI in my application, as far as supported by the Roku protocoll ... but of course optimized for the bigger screen.

One step in that direction is the new version 0.4 I just uploaded at
http://www.tl-it.de/media/pages/bridgecontrol.php
Its main new feature (all changes can be found at my homepage) is the 'View' menu for switching between different forms. The first addition is for browsing the play queue so that you can directly select a song for playback.

Thorsten
 
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RokuAnthony
El Jefe
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Sun Aug 21, 2005 5:35 pm

Pretty cool!

For the "complete UI" you could add a page pretty simply that would display and accept key presses for the complete, existing, soundbridge UI. There are some simple RCP commands to remote the existing UI. For example to get display updates, use "GetDisplayData".

Another good addition would be to use UPnP to auto detect the soundbridges on the network. This way a user would not have to enter an IP address. The sample windows app on our web site shows how to do this.

Anthony
 
Steve Starr
Posts: 48
Joined: Sun Feb 13, 2005 9:31 am

Mon Aug 22, 2005 10:29 am

thanks once again Thorsten, great stuff
Steve
 
tal
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Tue Aug 23, 2005 12:51 am

tal wrote:
mjturner wrote:
Could you get it to display the internet radio station track details, as the SB now displays it. At the moment it only shows the station name.

Strange, for me it already does.

I looked at it again and there is a bug preventing screen updates for radio station details. So you were right that at least sometimes the info is missing. I'll fix that with the next update.

Thanks for pointing it out!
Thorsten
 
tal
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Location: Hamburg, Germany
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Tue Aug 23, 2005 1:30 am

RokuAnthony wrote:
Pretty cool!

For the "complete UI" you could add a page pretty simply that would display and accept key presses for the complete, existing, soundbridge UI. There are some simple RCP commands to remote the existing UI. For example to get display updates, use "GetDisplayData".

As far as I can tell GetDisplayData isn't documented yet (only a short notice on page 9) and for me doesn't seem to work. But I'll keep it in mind.

RokuAnthony wrote:
Another good addition would be to use UPnP to auto detect the soundbridges on the network. This way a user would not have to enter an IP address. The sample windows app on our web site shows how to do this.

Great idea! I'll add this to my todo-list. This is something I definetly want to do.

Unfortunately since I'm writing in C# for .Net (and for PocketPC) the sample cannot easily be ported. What I found so far is that there are some stability issues with existing UPnP for PocketPC implementation. And since I like my applications to be stable I postponed UPnP support until I have enought time for thoroghly testing it.

Thorsten
 
tal
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Tue Aug 23, 2005 1:41 am

RokuDan wrote:
FWIW, the next version of the SoundBridge software will give you access to the shuffled order of the now playing playlist when you're in shuffle mode, and it will also allow you to add / remove items from the now playing playlist.

Great! I'll update BridgeControl to support these features as soon as the new firmware is available :D

B.t.w: because of the RCP issue mentioned above selecting a song from the 'Play Queue' doesn't work as expected in BridgeControl V0.4 if shuffle is turned on. I'll try to implement a work-around with the next update.

Thorsten
 
tal
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Wed Aug 31, 2005 3:00 am

tal wrote:
B.t.w: because of the RCP issue mentioned above selecting a song from the 'Play Queue' doesn't work as expected in BridgeControl V0.4 if shuffle is turned on. I'll try to implement a work-around with the next update.

There is a new version V0.5.0 available that fixes this and adds the following features:
    - Easy switching music libraries (servers) including 'Favorite Radio Stations'

    - Added Browse Playlist: Selecting a playlist for playback

    - Power on: 'Control SoundBridge' will power on the SoundBridge

    - Power off: put a SoundBridge in standby mode ('Controls' menu)

    - Internet radio: metadata is now correctly displayed (if available)

As before the new version can be downloaded at
http://www.tl-it.de/media/pages/bridgecontrol.php

Thorsten
 
ukanalyst
Posts: 36
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2005 11:46 am

Mon Sep 19, 2005 12:57 pm

tal,

Top Work! I got my Soundbridge mid-last week and had started writing an app in VB.Net (with the intention to port it to PPC later) as I couldn't find any decent software to do what your app does (until I found this thread). I think my app can wait for a while now!

I have to say I am very impressed with your application; for such a simply laid out app, it's rich in features for a PPC remote and the build quality is superb from what I've seen so far. Do you have plans to include a volume slider perhaps?

Once again top stuff! Keep up the good work!

Dave
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