The Future of HDHR

Want to write your own code to work with a HDHomeRun or work with the HDHomeRun DVR? We are happy to help with concepts, APIs, best practices.
Garyr
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby Garyr » Sun Jun 25, 2017 3:53 pm

I respect those of you that like the new thumb-style guide but respectfully disagree that it is always the best solution.
Often I see things that say something like tune in tomorrow at "3pm" and without knowing the name of the upcoming show it is just easier with a daily schedule.

In any event without constantly debating the merits of each scheme why not give people the choice?
And, If people are willing to pay for a time of day style guide that they are familiar with, it would seem like giving them that choice would only enhance the product.

If I was selling tuners it seems to me that I would want to make them available anyone who wanted to purchase them especially if my main source of income was related to selling tuner hardware.

A few years back i remember a discussion with the head of SONY who was asked the question "which TV model was the best".... He replied very insight-fully "it is of course the one that sells the most". You see he did not want to prejudge which feature set was better. A very wise person indeed!

Again, for those of you happy with the thumb-style guide great.... but there is an un-tapped market of people that really liked the original media center and lots of more people that are use to traditional guide data that every other cable and satellite company uses. Again, why force everyone to a new paradigm completely changing the way people think about or interact with something they are already comfortable with?

Mediaman
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby Mediaman » Sun Jun 25, 2017 4:26 pm

It may amount to a per client device fee for grid guide service via Tivo rather than per network? They are the only ones they could contract with to supply a grid guide.

As to your issue; that is what time shifting is good for; finding out exactly what the shows name is or where an advertised event is happening. If it is only 24 hours away slices does that very quickly usually.

gtb
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby gtb » Sun Jun 25, 2017 5:54 pm

In any event without constantly debating the merits of each scheme why not give people the choice?
If you are prepared to pay the fully encumbered pricing (development and licensing, especially licensing) for everyone (even those that do not want it (raises hand)) from now and in perpetuity, I recommend you contact SD to ask for the number, and the wire transfer account number. Be aware the number is likely in the seven (or eight?) figures. If you want *me* to pay for your desires by an increased licensed fee, the answer from me is not just no, but hell no.

Garyr
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby Garyr » Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:10 am

Help me to understand...
I can use a silicon dust tuner with a program like EMBY, myth tv, Kodi, and get the traditional guide data from Schedules direct for about $25/yr.
Also epg123 ( http://epg123.garyan2.net/ ) has created a program that takes this guide data and integrates it into WMC so it would seem like it should not be that hard to get it working on the silicon dust app.

signcarver
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby signcarver » Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:43 am

Its not a question of getting it to work but a question on licensing which typically runs $5/month/device (device may be considered as client, tuning device, or each tuner on a device depending on licensing agreement). From schedules direct the data in question is just data, someone else wrote some code that puts that data in a form a different form to be used in yet another application. In the case of WMC, there is a reason they switched over to **** as a provider as what they had to hold both Tivo and **** at bay (now one) no longer existed but prior to that there was a temporary agreement in place that they would not go after one another as Tivo/**** also needed to "license" certain IP from MS. (And **** did try prior to this agreement)

rpcameron
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby rpcameron » Mon Jun 26, 2017 1:33 pm

Help me to understand...
I can use a silicon dust tuner with a program like EMBY, myth tv, Kodi, and get the traditional guide data from Schedules direct for about $25/yr.
Also epg123 ( http://epg123.garyan2.net/ ) has created a program that takes this guide data and integrates it into WMC so it would seem like it should not be that hard to get it working on the silicon dust app.
It should also be noted that while epg123 may technically support WMC, it is against the licensing agreement of SchedulesDirect to use their data for any commercial application. According to their agreement with Gracenote (which supplies the EPG data), the guide data can only be used with open source software, and cannot be stored or archived for historical/archival purposes.

If you need to use a third-party for EPG data but are using commercial software, then your source should be Perc Data, which licenses Gracenote data as well (IIRC), but is licensed for commercial software rather than open source.

Licensing is a complex situation, and ironing out all of the details is very difficult.

With that said, I'm not aware of any patents or licensing restrictions on a grid-based EPG. I don't believe there are any legal or technical reasons why SiliconDust cannot present the guide in such a manner. The only thing limiting the grid-based EPG are the SD developers themselves, as they have stated that they believe their "guide" is superior for discovery, and that they have no intention of adding the grid-based EPG that users are requesting.

The lack of a grid-based EPG, along with the apparent glacial development pace and other missing features is why I've lost interest in SD's DVR.

mack0331
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby mack0331 » Tue Jun 27, 2017 8:33 am

Again, for those of you happy with the thumb-style guide great.... but there is an un-tapped market of people that really liked the original media center and lots of more people that are use to traditional guide data that every other cable and satellite company uses. Again, why force everyone to a new paradigm completely changing the way people think about or interact with something they are already comfortable with?
Here's the thing, though: The 'new paradigm' that you're describing was actually here before SD developed their thumbnail-style guide. How does Netflix display content? Hulu? Amazon Video? The market for SD is, I believe, less about capturing traditional cord-cutters who once paid lots and lots for cable plans, but rather those individuals who recently left their parents' basements and now need to figure out how to get their favorite shows (on demand or recorded) without mom and dad's expensive cable plan. I think that's a much bigger market than the one you're describing.

Netflix subscribers either (a) search for the exact show/movie they know they want to watch, (b) search by media category/genre, or (c) scroll through images and descriptions to find what looks good. Tools for almost all of these behaviors are captured quite well in the current guide layout. That's not inherently better than a traditional EPG but Netflix dominates the media market (they spent more on original content this past year than any company except ESPN...) and they are training the next generation of consumers to expect thumbnail-style media listings.

So I think what you're asking for is not that SD develop their product in the most marketable way. Rather, that out of the goodness of their hearts, they should help you (and plenty of others) avoid change.

As to the idea of having it both ways, I'm not opposed to a traditional guide and personally enjoy using that when I just want to browse channels so I wouldn't mind if SD added the option. However, I find myself getting much more comfortable scrolling through a thumbnail guide these days (Thank you, Netflix, for the social engineering). The last thing I would add is that I believe searching by voice would be the next great step in the guide development. Features like that are forward-thinking rather than appeasing those that were trained on what is now considering a shrinking market.

rpcameron
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby rpcameron » Tue Jun 27, 2017 9:15 am

Again, for those of you happy with the thumb-style guide great.... but there is an un-tapped market of people that really liked the original media center and lots of more people that are use to traditional guide data that every other cable and satellite company uses. Again, why force everyone to a new paradigm completely changing the way people think about or interact with something they are already comfortable with?
Here's the thing, though: The 'new paradigm' that you're describing was actually here before SD developed their thumbnail-style guide. How does Netflix display content? Hulu? Amazon Video? The market for SD is, I believe, less about capturing traditional cord-cutters who once paid lots and lots for cable plans, but rather those individuals who recently left their parents' basements and now need to figure out how to get their favorite shows (on demand or recorded) without mom and dad's expensive cable plan. I think that's a much bigger market than the one you're describing.
The problem with your examples, however, is that those OTT services are on-demand. While some may now offer a Live TV option, historically they did not. Therefore, there was grid-based guide, because the concept of "what's playing now and live" on any particular channel did not apply to those services.

With SiliconDust (and TV tuners in general), the "thumbnail-style guide" as you put it does not allow one to easily see:
  • What is on right now
  • How far into a currently airing program is the broadcast
  • What is on next (either later, or in the immediate future)
All of that information is easily available across multiple channels at the same time on one screen. While you may be able to get some or most of that information from a "thumbnail-style" view, it is not as easily parsed as a whole as the grid-based view.

In addition, those OTT services that are now offering Live TV as part of their packages all have a grid-based EPG for their live content. SD's decision to only pursue the "thumbnail-style" guide for live content definitely puts them into a separate category than the others. Whether that's a good thing or not is subjective; in my view it is definitely a negative, but others may feel differently. However, there are MANY users asking for the grid-based EPG, and very few who claim the "thumbnail-style" guide is far superior for live content.

signcarver
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby signcarver » Tue Jun 27, 2017 10:07 am

All those things are on the normal guide on the right... (What is on now, how much has elapsed, what is on next) anything beyond that is pointless for "live"

Many don't have a grid for the same licensing reasons (cost $5/month to license "grid guide") or "millions" to fight ****/Tivo

rpcameron
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby rpcameron » Tue Jun 27, 2017 11:31 am

All those things are on the normal guide on the right... (What is on now, how much has elapsed, what is on next) anything beyond that is pointless for "live"

Many don't have a grid for the same licensing reasons (cost $5/month to license "grid guide") or "millions" to fight ****/Tivo
The HDHomeRun View app does show what's on presently for channels on the side, but only what is on next for the selected channel, not multiple channels.

As far as other OTT providers offering live TV:
  • DirecTV Now has a grid-based EPG
  • Sling TV has a grid-based EPG
  • Youtube TV has somewhat of a grid-based EPG, with a listing of channels, current programming, and the next program arrayed in a grid
  • Playstation Vue has a grid-based EPG
  • Hulu seems to only have a "thumbnail" type of program listing
Of the major OTT services offering live TV, all but one offer the grid-based EPG of some sort. Comparing SiliconDust's offering to other services, they are definitely in the minority.

gtb
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby gtb » Tue Jun 27, 2017 2:36 pm

With that said, I'm not aware of any patents or licensing restrictions on a grid-based EPG.
There is a principal, "ignorantia legis neminem excusat" (Latin for "ignorance of the law excuses no one"), and while I will certainly not dispute your asserted claims of ignorance, I will tell you that you have the option to contact your lawyer to educate you (both with the results, and the billable hours you will get charged for doing the LexisNexis searches).

rpcameron
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby rpcameron » Tue Jun 27, 2017 4:41 pm

With that said, I'm not aware of any patents or licensing restrictions on a grid-based EPG.
There is a principal, "ignorantia legis neminem excusat" (Latin for "ignorance of the law excuses no one"), and while I will certainly not dispute your asserted claims of ignorance, I will tell you that you have the option to contact your lawyer to educate you (both with the results, and the billable hours you will get charged for doing the LexisNexis searches).
Devolving into personal attacks isn't really necessary. Yes, I am aware that ignorance is no defense. However, no concrete example of which patents pertain to a grid-based EPG have been presented. If you can enumerate the relevant patents that require licensing (as well as who holds them), then please share them with us.

I don't recall any representative from SD stating that the lack of grid-based EPG in their products was due to licensing issues. The only justification I recall is that they feel their "thumbnail" guide to be superior, and therefore have no plans to implement a grid-based guide.

As far as this discussion is concerned, there are still a number of outstanding issues that have yet to be resolved:
  • DRM support for "closed"/non-Linux platforms.
  • iOS client
  • DRM recording
  • Stable firmware that does not cause tuners to drop off the network. (There are some beta firmwares, but nothing stable has been released.
Also, let's not forget that all of these shortcomings are still present, but SD has removed the "early access/beta" qualifier from their DVR software. Perhaps I'm alone, but the first 3 points above were all promised as part of the initial Kickstarter campaign, however they have yet to appear in the publicly released version of SD's software.

As far as that last point: a stable firmware should not be taking the backseat to a much-delayed DVR project. The firmware should be stable and supported regardless of which software package I choose to use for my TV viewing.

gtb
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Re: The Future of HDHR

Postby gtb » Tue Jun 27, 2017 5:16 pm

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