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<  Computer connections  ~  as2mei - a replacement for rt2mei?

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EMJB
Posted: Tue May 17, 2016 7:24 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 08 Jul 2005 Posts: 3620 Location: Maldon Essex
Just received a message from metabroadcast.com, with some bad news:

(1) The RT feed used by te2mei is being switched off next month

(2) My initial interpretation is that we not are going to be able to continue using Atlas data free - they see the free access as a loss leader in the hope that it will be followed by pay-for service.

See https://metabroadcast.com/blog/changes-to-atlas-access for more details.

However will give it some more consideration in the next few days before deciding what action to take.

EMJB

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db82407
Posted: Tue May 17, 2016 7:54 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Sep 2005 Posts: 23 Location: London
EMJB wrote:
Just received a message from metabroadcast.com, with some bad news:

(1) The RT feed used by te2mei is being switched off next month

(2) My initial interpretation is that we not are going to be able to continue using Atlas data free - they see the free access as a loss leader in the hope that it will be followed by pay-for service.

See https://metabroadcast.com/blog/changes-to-atlas-access for more details.

However will give it some more consideration in the next few days before deciding what action to take.

EMJB



I received that email too. I've been using Atlas directly to get data on new channels not in the old radiotimes feed.

What do you think about toppy.org.uk getting an Atlas API key, and producing a single atlas.mei file each day that other toppy users can download?

This would reduce the load on Atlas to one 14-day all-channel dump each day, rather than one-per-toppy-as2mei-user. We could evan pay a small amount for this via paypal donations if necessary.

Do we know how many toppy users are (indirectly) using Atlas?
If so, we could propose this solution to metabroadcast that would reduce toppy usage from N to 1. Probably best to get their approval first, otherwise we could set this up just to find metabroadcast consider it a breach of their terms.

Alternatively, we could look at getting a feed from http://schedulesdirect.org/,
as suggested in the changes-to-atlas link. This would cost $25/y per-subscriber.

Does anyone know if the quality of the schedules direct data matches that of the atlas data?


--
Derek

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MickKi
Posted: Tue May 17, 2016 9:38 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 30 Aug 2008 Posts: 191
I received the same email today. I have not had any discussions with Atlas, but from what I surmise they are only interested in providing a real time data feed via their API to end user devices. I can see the commercial reason for obtaining real time user/usage data and then selling this to broacasting, show producing, et al. businesses, as worthwhile marketing intelligence. In other words in their tried and tested business model, we are the product. However, our Toppy based use case would not serve their (assumed) purpose and in any case strictly speaking, their T&Cs exclude it. I was reading the following paragraph and was not sure how to interprete it:
Quote:
Beyond 10 users on a single API key, or for trials continuing longer than three months, a charge is levied based on the number of users you have, and the features you use.
I understand this to mean that the service will not be free after 3 months of use, no matter if we are downloading data for 1 device or 10.

If this is so, then http scraping may prove to be the only free alternative ...

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birdman
Posted: Tue May 17, 2016 9:51 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 13 Dec 2006 Posts: 1758 Location: Hitchin, HERTS Tx: Sandy Heath
db82407 wrote:
Probably best to get their approval first, otherwise we could set this up just to find metabroadcast consider it a breach of their terms.
Considering their terms are now:
Quote:
One specific change required is that no call to the Atlas schedule endpoint should request more than 24 hours of data. Applications not following this rule will be revoked without further notice.
it would be a breach.

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Frank Haemorrhage
Posted: Tue May 17, 2016 10:27 pm Reply with quote
Regular contributor Joined: 08 Nov 2008 Posts: 70
Would 'Red Bee Media' Broadcasting Dataservices be a suitable alternative for TV schedules? Atlas apparently use it as one of their sources, https://metabroadcast.com/blog/unstructured-schedule-data , and it seemingly offers free access for registered users, http://www.bds.tv/ .

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EMJB
Posted: Wed May 18, 2016 9:43 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 08 Jul 2005 Posts: 3620 Location: Maldon Essex
Frank Haemorrhage wrote:
Would 'Red Bee Media' Broadcasting Dataservices be a suitable alternative for TV schedules? Atlas apparently use it as one of their sources, https://metabroadcast.com/blog/unstructured-schedule-data , and it seemingly offers free access for registered users, http://www.bds.tv/ .


Well done! The later parts of the very long first line of the data sample in your first link seems to imply that 15 day's worth of data is published every Friday rather than every day, but that could be just reflecting the fact that the file was collected on a Saturday. Extracting the wanted data looks to be more onerous that the Atlas responses, but easier than scraping it from web pages, and as Atlas is open source we have access to their code. Anyway it looks hopeful, so I have registered (which took about 10 minutes rather than 48 hours to complete) but have to wait for admin approval before getting access to the data.

EMJB

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EMJB
Posted: Wed May 18, 2016 10:10 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 08 Jul 2005 Posts: 3620 Location: Maldon Essex
db82407 wrote:
What do you think about toppy.org.uk getting an Atlas API key, and producing a single atlas.mei file each day that other toppy users can download?

This would reduce the load on Atlas to one 14-day all-channel dump each day, rather than one-per-toppy-as2mei-user. We could evan pay a small amount for this via paypal donations if necessary.

Do we know how many toppy users are (indirectly) using Atlas?
If so, we could propose this solution to metabroadcast that would reduce toppy usage from N to 1. Probably best to get their approval first, otherwise we could set this up just to find metabroadcast consider it a breach of their terms.


It is my impression that they would not be interested in all the hassle this would raise. To put things in perspective, I would expect them to consider the costs of setting up a special agreement to be in the thousands of pounds in terms of legal advice, technical advice, and special arrangements to bypass the checking of download activities. Assuming people were willing to pay £20 pa, you would need hundreds of users to sign up for a year to make it worthwhile. You then need to get someone to implement and police the toppy.org.uk end. Personally I don't think there really is a problem for them in what we do - we are just caught up in a drive to improve their revenue. However if you think I am wrong, by all means see what you can organise.

db82407 wrote:
Alternatively, we could look at getting a feed from http://schedulesdirect.org/, as suggested in the changes-to-atlas link. This would cost $25/y per-subscriber. Does anyone know if the quality of the schedules direct data matches that of the atlas data?
If you could get a sample of the data, I would be happy to look at the problems of processing it if the Red Bee approach collapses.

EMJB

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BigAl
Posted: Thu May 19, 2016 4:55 pm Reply with quote
Regular contributor Joined: 01 May 2005 Posts: 27
Hi EMJB,

I've come across someone else who is working on a solution not involving Metabroadcast, using instead data from 'mc2xml'.

See the following discussion forum, starting at the bottom of page 15 -
http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?f=48&t=2782481&start=210

If you feel this could be of use, you might want to contact him. He posts as 'Benjamin Markson'.

Hope this helps.

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Bizman
Posted: Thu May 19, 2016 5:52 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 06 Apr 2010 Posts: 1700
@BigAl, Very interesting link. I have probably just blown my API key doing my normal 14-day download for 'Pick of the Week', but then what the hell it was coming to an end anyway, MovieMix has been missing for several weeks now.

If no solution is found, PotW will continue, but in a reduced form. I have software which will retrieve the 7-day OTA EPG, but the descriptions obtained thereby are woefully inadequate in comparison.

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EMJB
Posted: Thu May 19, 2016 9:10 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 08 Jul 2005 Posts: 3620 Location: Maldon Essex
BigAl wrote:
Hi EMJB,

I've come across someone else who is working on a solution not involving Metabroadcast, using instead data from 'mc2xml'.

See the following discussion forum, starting at the bottom of page 15 -
http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?f=48&t=2782481&start=210

If you feel this could be of use, you might want to contact him. He posts as 'Benjamin Markson'.

Hope this helps.


Yes, that looked interesting till I followed his link for mc2xml and got a dire warning from McAfee about the site being very dodgy, so am dis-inclined to follow that one up. If you are a member of that forum, perhaps you could warn him.

Still no authorisation to get the Red Bee data.

EMJB

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Bizman
Posted: Fri May 20, 2016 7:13 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 06 Apr 2010 Posts: 1700
EMJB wrote:
Yes, that looked interesting till I followed his link for mc2xml and got a dire warning from McAfee about the site being very dodgy, so am dis-inclined to follow that one up. If you are a member of that forum, perhaps you could warn him.
EMJB
The McAfee warning relates to the site wanting information from you. I accepted the risk and found it simply wants your country & postcode, hence the alert. The information is required to set your TV region.

Here are some of the options:
"To save bandwidth, the "mc2xml.dat" file also saves the version number of the listings when using one of the media center services. If you run mc2xml again and the listings have not been updated on the server, they will not be downloaded again ("No new data available"). "

"If you want to limit which channels are output in your xml file you can create a "mc2xml.chl" text file (in the same directory as mc2xml.dat). The channel inclusion and exclusion lists are initially empty so all channels will be included. Specifying channel numbers, channel number ranges, channel names, or channel ids on separate lines will create an inclusion list."

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TAPs: EIT Sub (Game) v0.6; SecCache (UK) v0.4; MHEG On/Off A3; MPDisplayLITE V1.2; MyInfo B5.6; PruneEPG 1.0; EPG2MEI v0.96; QuickJump 1.72; Extend v1.7; (fsSave 1.1);
Sig generated by MyInfo on 3/8/17

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EMJB
Posted: Fri May 20, 2016 9:14 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 08 Jul 2005 Posts: 3620 Location: Maldon Essex
@Bizman

Obviously I am not as brave as you!

Accepting the "risk", uncovers another problem. mc2xml appears to be an application that is only available for x86 machines, ruling out slugs, Pi's, etc. As far as I am concerned, this is a major limitation, so I am still pinning my hopes on Red Bee (but still no confirmation of access).

EMJB

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mstombs
Posted: Fri May 20, 2016 9:26 am Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 31 Dec 2006 Posts: 935
Quote:
Robert Eden
25 March, 2012
MC2XML obtains data from Microsoft by impersonating Windows Media Center in violation of itís terms of service (which you arenít shown of course). Itís up to each individual if they consider that stealing or otherwise morally wrong.

(Disclaimer: Iím a founding director of Schedules Direct.)

http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/mc2xml-easily-download-convert-tv-listings-xmltv-media-center/

Closed source binary only, but apparently available for rpi? I wonder where MS get their UK data from...?
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EMJB
Posted: Fri May 20, 2016 1:09 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 08 Jul 2005 Posts: 3620 Location: Maldon Essex
mstombs wrote:
.. but apparently available for rpi?
The only downloads I could find were for x86 machines, though Windows, Linux, & MacOs versions seem to be available. If you have found an ARM/RPi reference, please let me know.

EMJB

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mstombs
Posted: Fri May 20, 2016 6:45 pm Reply with quote
Frequent contributor Joined: 31 Dec 2006 Posts: 935
erm, private copy mentioned:-

http://openelec.tv/forum/124-raspberry-pi/74563-running-mc2xml-on-openelec-rpi

He supports Linux builds, but seems as though this is a donation only copy
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