Custom Portal - Development

mcquaim

Member
Hi there,

If I wanted to try and develop an app for the custom portal where would I start?

What language etc. is used in the existing apps on the custom portal?

I have been creating OnDemand video/radio plugins for the enigma2 (BBC/ITV/RTE/TV3 etc.) boxes and I was wondering if any of them could be converted to work on the Humax..

Is there a Git for the source or where can I obtain this info? I think something in this area is badly needed on the Humax portal.

Cheers,
mcquaim
 

Kev_w

Member
I agree. ITV player and 4oD would make this box complete for me.

The implementation of iplayer on the humax seems a bit strange to me. It seems to stream mp4s from humax directly via a website hosted abroad? Not sure how it could deal with silverlight/flash for ITV and 4oD?

The new browser featured in the new official firmware 1.03.06 might help but the custom portal doesn't work with that yet...

Posted on the move
 

ChrisDaniels

Well-Known Member
As far as the custom portal goes, I have not had time to look into it properly for the new browser.
Ian, who built the Xtra1 portal has not been back here for a long time now, so I don't think he will be picking it up either.

If you want to have a go at building or bringing the old custom portal back, then by all means you can have a go.
There is no git source, you would be best downloading the xtra1 package or the older custom portal package and extracting the files from there to see what we had working. Then you would need to change the homepage of the new broswer so that it points to our files.

The iPlayer app is hosted by the beeb, so it wont be coming in from abroad.
Flash & Silverlight are pretty much a dead end on these boxes.
 
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mcquaim

Member
Cheers Chris!

I would need to pick up a cheap HDR T2 box then. I gave my own to my better half's folks a years or so ago when I moved over to enigma2 but every time I'm there I think what a great addition these players on the Humax would be.

I have been writing them in Python but I'm not sure if that is the code that is used here, it doesn't look like it. I'm thinking by the look of the screens its JavaScript or something like that but time will tell.

You couldn't download those two packages and post them here to see if it would even be possible, save me splashing out cash if it can't be added?
 

Ezra Pound

Well-Known Member
I can help with some of the background info. (though not the coding) for the Custom TV portal, the original one was written by Chris (Daniels) on 22 OCT 2011, the current portal Xtra1 was written by Spayz aka Ian Jukes on 2 FEB 2012, as Chris says Ian hasn't been around for a while so I'm not sure how contactable he is.
Here are links to both new and old packages :-
http://hummypkg.org.uk/hdrfoxt2/old/custom-portal_1.12_mipsel.opk
http://hummypkg.org.uk/hdrfoxt2/base/portal-xtra1_1.12.064.300-2_mipsel.opk

There are notes on the WiKi on how to compile and un-compile the above packages HERE, If you need any help extracting / compiling the files let me know
 
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mcquaim

Member
Quick question, is there a good windows app that will unpack these opk files since I don't have access to the HDR T2?
 

ChrisDaniels

Well-Known Member
Yeah mcquaim, Javascript is in heavy use by a lot of the humax apps.. but the platform is not limited to it. I think they have gone for javascript for the speed and as an easy route to capture the remote control keypresses and page/button selection process as dont forget, you dont have a cursor or keyboard..

The old ANT browser was really slow compared to the new Opera one, so there should be scope to do more than previous..
 
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mcquaim

Member
Thanks Lads, got into the code in the portal..

It looks like nothing is actually installed on the Humax with this Portal, it's simply a web browser to point to the Humax portal from what I can see!
Code:
http://tv2.humaxtvportal.com:8094/PortalService/vTuner/index.htm?feed=favourite&level=top&siteLang=eng
http://tv2.humaxtvportal.com/WikiTv
http://tvapps.humaxtvportal.com/obigowebapps/techiebuzz/Index.html
etc..

It might not be the end of the world though.. I guess we could always host a html page directly on the Humax and launch that from the Portal and see how it reacts.

On enigma2 the OnDemand players are written in Python and are installed directly onto the receiver so it would have to work differently. I think I will need to pick myself up on of these guys so I can investigate further.

On a side note, was the issue with the EPG not allowing sources from two locations ever fixed? It used to really bug me.. I would be picking up NI and Irish EPG sources but the Humax could only display one or the other at at time, very annoying..
 

ChrisDaniels

Well-Known Member
Yep, thats how it works.. no installs, just pointers. The custom portal was hosted on the box as a landing page and from there you could navigate to the other apps. The big issue with designing such pages is the navigation. The Xtra1 portal tried to simplify things by only using the FastText coloured keys.
 
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mcquaim

Member
The key press seems to be handled ok in portal.js from looking at it quickly. Even if the portal is only being used as a browser as such to display the humax portal apps it still has to be able to track the key press from the remote.

It is starting in function keyPress(event) so it should be able to be reused.. The bigger issue will be finding a way to parse xml on the Humax I reckon, google will be my friend but that will be further down the road..
 
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mcquaim

Member
I ordered a 2nd hand HDR T2 off eBay the other day so it should arrive shortly and I can take a look at players for it..

A quick question though on the current portal code that was posted above. Has anyone ever been able to hook into the video.js javascript file to either play a local file or play an internet stream?

If so then where can I get this code as it would save me trying to reinvent the wheel as such?

While going through your code above a few days back I was able to add a link to the RTE Payer feeds and parse their XML using javascript so that part is possible anyway. The stumbling blocks will be getting the HDR T2 to be able to firstly navigate a new local webpage and then secondly launch the mp4 stream using the video.js file..

I will know more when the receiver arrives but it all looks possible so far anyway by having a very quick look at the code.. 4OD can't currently be accessed as they changed their website but RTE, TV3 and ITV can and the receiver already has BBC so no need to introduce a duplicate version.. It's all theory yet though so as to not sets any hopes too high!
 

ChrisDaniels

Well-Known Member
Without looking i can tell you yes it will play an mp4 internet stream, but not tested a local file. iPlayer uses mp4 too.
...
Just did some digging through some conversations I had with af123 a few years back.. He found this: http://itv.mit-xperts.com/mitxpgo/
It might help you ;) esp. the 2df app, if its still there..
 

Kev_w

Member
Jumping ahead sumwhat...

Will this be easy to port to the new opera based portal packaged with 1.03.06?

I've heard that the iplayer experience is much improved with the opera browser.

Posted on the move
 

Kev_w

Member
Just wondering which basket it would be best to put all the eggs in :)

Old ANT browser because more is known about it or new Opera browser because it sounds more capable? Or it might not make a difference?

Anyway, good luck! Have fun! :)



Posted on the move
 

af123

Administrator
Staff member
Old ANT browser because more is known about it or new Opera browser because it sounds more capable? Or it might not make a difference?
It shouldn't matter - they should both support HbbTV. There appears to be a downloadable Opera HbbTV emulator/simulator which would likely make app development easier.

I finally got around to trying something that Chris Daniels suggested about getting the custom portals working on 1.03.06 and it works. It works in that it is possible to change the start page of the new Opera browser too but at least portal-xtra1 doesn't seem to work properly (doesn't respond to all key presses). I could update the packages for 1.03.06 so that people could have a play.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I don't understand what they think can be achieved in this area. As far as I know, the API to access the graphics routines is undocumented, and the only means we have of putting custom images on the screen is to force the built-in browser to display a web page. The user input is also extremely limited.

Is the plan to somehow create a cursor interface to a web page that can access on-line MP4s?
 
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