Results of XBMC Developers Conference

Posted By: Team XBMC on Jul 04, 2009 in Site News

This year, Team-XBMC held its annual XBMC Dev Con directly after LinuxTag in Berlin.  We like to come together every now and then to meet face to face and discuss the state of things, the future of XBMC, and socialize a bit too. In attendance this time around were pike, chadoe, spiff, elupus, jmarshall, WiSo, alcoheca, vdrfan, MaestroDD, and blittan. Attending from Boxee (who were nice enough to sponsor XBMC Dev Con 2009) were yuvalt, vulkanr, eli, and erez. Also mot2dk, Haggy, and Clumsy made it to LinuxTag but not to the XBMC Dev Con. Overall, it was a great success. Below is a brief outline of the topics discussed.

Video Library

jmarshall has posted before about his proposed video library makeover, and now he’s ready to put it into action. The goal is to combine the file and library views into one useful mechanism, while making it easier and more straightforward to add, organize, filter, and display content. Watch for a post on the dev blogs with much more detail from jmarshall in the near future.

Addons

We’ve received lots of complaints about the addons structure (or lack of it) in XBMC, such as finding and installing third-party plugins, scripts, scrapers, and skins. As a result, an in dept discussion has started about the possibility of adding an official addon manager inside of XBMC itself so that everything would be available directly from the interface. Also, there was much discussion about different ways of organizing the plugins and scripts to keep them up to date. Plans are far from finalized, but surely the results will be up to XBMC’s usual high standards.

WebBrowser and Flash Integration

This one is only a maybe, but they are still being evaluated. To be clear so that it is not misinterpeted, this has nothing to do with adding a full-blown embedded web browser in XBMC, only the ability to grab media content (such as flash) from the web for use in plugins.

Release Schedule

We believe that the current 6-month release schedule (based upon Ubuntu release cycle) is still viable, though it will be shifted by a month or so to give us time for testing with the new version. We will also probably start doing interim releases as new features are added. These will not go through the same testing schedule as the major releases, but should reduce the need for users to compile their own builds or look for third-party sources just to keep up with the latest bleeding-edge features.

Translations

The XBMC community has always been great about contributing to the translation effort, and blittan has stepped up to help ease this work. He will be coordinating a move to Launchpad so that the community will be able to become even more involved in translating XBMC languge files and keeping them up to date. Also, to help alleviate some of the redundant translations, some ‘common phrases’ will be added that all third-party addons can use as well.

Website Changes

It’s time to knock the dust off of xbmc.org and shake things up a bit. We realize that most of our loyal users just go straight to the XBMC Community Forums because that’s where all the good stuff is found, but we’ll be making a concerted effort in the near future to reorganize our site. We hope to make it easier to find the current news and developments all in one place.

DevCon 2009

From left to right: Erez, Pike, Yuvalt, WiSo, vulkanr, vdrfan, elupus, blittan, chadoe, MaestroDD


Watch for these and many other changes in the future. We’ll be sure to let you know as plans unfold. And If you haven’t already, don’t forget to Vote for XBMC Media Center in the Sourceforge Community Choice Awards!

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Discussion - 23 Comments

  • DAddYE Jul 04, 2009 

    All beautiful ideas! Thank you!

  • HenrikDK Jul 04, 2009 

    All of these ideas sound great, thnx for the tremendous work you guys put in..

  • Dan Dar3 Jul 04, 2009 

    All sounds great, thanks for your effors, and oh ya, we’re behind you!

  • hasselhof Jul 04, 2009 

    Can’t wait!!

  • Andri Jul 04, 2009 

    Keep up the good work guys. Also kudos for being one of the few booths at LinuxTag capable of talking to the English speaking guests.

  • Thomas Jul 05, 2009 

    Can’t wait till next release. You guys puts up a really great work with xbmc. It is not my prefered – yet. But the software has great potential – and the graphics is just awesome!

    I want to contribute to your project with a danish translation – cause the translated ones allready exists lacks in some misspellings.

    Keep up the good work.

  • Jezz_X Jul 05, 2009 

    Thomas these are long term goals not all of them will be in the next release many will take a while to accomplish to the standard we want

  • Christian Jul 05, 2009 

    I’d love to see a feature that makes xbmc automatically restart when it crashes, preferably resuming whatever it was doing. (resuming play, restart in the same folder if not playing, etc.) Crashing is the only reason I have to grab a keyboard as I have a mce remote. Maybe some sort of watchdog?

  • Mike Jul 05, 2009 

    Great ideas guys, however I was really hoping you guys would have discussed some decentralization options allowing one server to run multiple UI’s etc. Is there any more talks about this?

  • theuni Jul 05, 2009 

    Christian-

    A watchdog is very easy, check out XBMC Live’s implementation.

  • Watson Jul 05, 2009 

    Sounds like a nice healthy and productive meet/conf. I did not vote for xbmc as best mediaplayer app this year, since i really think it lacks some important features: tv support, and bluray support. But i like the things mentioned here, looking forward to testing, and giving feedback on the forum as always.

  • jmarshall Jul 06, 2009 

    @Mike: The new video library is quite possibly going to use Couchdb (http://couchdb.apache.org) which will allow single server/multiple clients (or even multiple servers/multiple clients – it’s distributed). If successful, the same thing will be applied to the music library as well.

    Obviously in the meantime you can serve your media over upnp from a central XBMC instance, though I admit it’s not quite as pretty as having all the database goodness on each client!

    @Watson: I think you’ll like the upcoming stuff then. Not much we can do about bluray given it’s DRM encrusted. Note that we already act as a frontend to MythTV, as well as the very nice TVHeadEnd (check it out if you haven’t already). The only thing we don’t do is the EPG/recording side of things.

  • Gamester17 Jul 06, 2009 

    @Mike, if you are a developer yourself then you might be interested the discussion that is going on in the “ODBC (Open Database Connectivity) database abstraction layer or API for XBMC” topic thread in the feature suggestion forum as it about the underlying technologies that are first needed for decentralization options to happen:
    http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?t=37449

    If you however are an end-user then you might be more interesting in contributing to the discussion about “centralized XBMC management for multiple XBMC devices/platforms” which does not talk about the underlying technology but only the end result users want to achieve:
    http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?t=37315

  • MikeB Jul 06, 2009 

    Just wanted to say thanks for all of your hard work. The recent PPC build has me so psyched. I had written off my Mac Mini G4 as a htpc until this.

  • Tuxie Jul 07, 2009 

    I love the Piratpartiet (The Swedish Pirate Party) T-shirt! :D

  • K405 Jul 08, 2009 

    I love you guys! ;) and not just you but anybody involved :)

    I just finished voting for XBMC at the community choice awards 2009 over at sourceforge.net

    Keep up the good work, you rock.

    [url]https://sourceforge.net/community/cca09/vote/[/url]

  • ashlar Jul 08, 2009 

    As always, many thanks for all the hard work you put into XBMC.

  • sdsnyr94 Jul 09, 2009 

    Just wanted to say thanks for all the hard work you guys put in. Along with everyone who create/Mod the skins for XBMC, you guys have a product that I would willingly pay for! I have previously used Myth (Mythbuntu)and LinuxMCE, and one feature they both had was the ability to PXE boot a frontend. If XBMC will eventually have a “server” library, any chance we could see an easy implementation (from the end users view) of a network boot?

    Thanks again for everything the community does!!!!

  • bugre Jul 18, 2009 

    Only to say hello, and of course thank`s for all the hard work.
    Thanks.

  • Parvez Khan Jul 22, 2009 

    When visiting the website, for the non-developer users, it is hard to tell, what are new features in upcoming releases (and what’s new about the current features). This is important as a lot of new and cool changes may be subtle and may be underutilised by new users as they do not know it exists . Also its hard to track how you are going with long term targets such as (e.g. an XBMC linux distro etc)

    Other than that, this is easily one of the best softwares around and easily the best media center for any platform. Keep up the great work guys!

  • simon Aug 01, 2009 

    Why not a web Browser? I would LOVE to browse the web on my TV instead of having to pull out the laptop. Just a basic one would be fine better than nothing. Maybe integrate GPL-based Dillo(http://www.dillo.org/). I think there’s a demand for it. Let’s make it happen. Go go go :)

  • theuni Aug 02, 2009 

    simon: You’re a little late on the request ;)
    See here: http://xbmc.org/donj/2009/07/22/top-secret-xbmc-developments/

  • Seb Aug 04, 2009 

    First, Thank a lot!!!!!!!
    Second, I can’t wait… :D

    Thanks again for everything.

About XBMC

XBMC is a free and open source media player application developed by the XBMC Foundation, a non-profit technology consortium. XBMC is available for multiple operating-systems and hardware platforms, featuring a 10-foot user interface for use with televisions and remote controls. It allows users to play and view most videos, music, podcasts, and other digital media files from local and network storage media and the internet.