Author Topic: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?  (Read 1588 times)

Rupert

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Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« on: February 23, 2017, 09:01:59 AM »
OK.  We have a quite severe level of alzheimer's in the family now.
What we find is that he is struggling to turn on and off the TV, and gets very cross if something he does not like comes on.  (like sport)

As he is unable to change channel, or understand anything of how it works, its down to us to turn it on and off when "country file" comes on etc.

I am fairly sure I can get the TV to turn on and then off again when certain programs are on on terrestrial TV, but what I would like to be able to do is set up a playlist of vids from iplayer, (a playlist) that just plays when its turned on.

I assumed it would be easy enough to find, but I am looking in the wrong places!


I know how ingenious the team is here, working with RSS etc, so I am hoping there is someone who has tried this for other reasons!  (Like sitting down for a box set.... ) 

Any nuggets for brainstorming this would be appreciated.  I am sure its a service that would go down well in Care homes.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2017, 09:05:54 AM by Rupert »
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Rupert

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2017, 09:16:15 AM »
Ok started searching differently.  A break and a coffee helped:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/bbc-iplayer-playlists/pbfcbgceiloelbgjlplcgodohedpcnjo?hl=en

not got a browser to play with yet, but might be able to do that with an android box.

It only does iplayer, not other streaming services, but I suspect that will cover most of his favourite options.
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nffc

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2017, 11:48:25 AM »
>What we find is that he is struggling to turn on and off the TV, and gets very cross if something he does not like comes on.

Sounds like me.

With my boy we just set up youtube playlists.

rcjordan

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2017, 12:24:22 PM »
I only do videos/youtube when there are no alternative, so perhaps I'm not the best to recommend here. That said, I think a browser-based  viewer could be customized using Ublock and Greasemonkey-type user scripting to simplify or repopulate the UI so that it helps keep the user corralled within playlists.

Another quick thought is that some open-source media players such as VLC or Plex might be set up as a kiosk. In some cases, having a huge loop of canned content might work.

Rupert

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Re: Streaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2017, 03:24:43 PM »
Youtube playlist.... good one thanks.  If I can get  the TV to fire up straight to youtube it might work.  Looking about it seems people have set up their own playlists. Kodi might be a part of the solution.  They manage to pull just about anything that is being streamed into a feed.

I had not realised they were charging for stuff on youtube now. 
Only fools and horses... you have to pay for it!!!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NrTyS3aDhI&list=ELiaJqSonpG8U

I think I have digital versions of all of that, so could put them onto a usb stick, and work out how to get it to just play.

If I am there to turn it on, then I can do it now,  but struggling to set it up so he can get it working without me.  The start up process has to be "press this big red button"  The world must be so confusing for him. sigh.

Thanks for the brainstorm guys.
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rcjordan

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2017, 03:38:13 PM »
> The start up process has to be "press this big red button"

I've dealt with similar during the prehistoric age.  My elderly, nearly-blind mom could shove a VHS tape into the player and it would eventually get through the intro to the movie content.  That all changed when DVDs took over the market and opened to a menu screen which she couldn't read.

I mentioned user scripts, injecting big red buttons is do-able with those (though I haven't done it myself).

ergophobe

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2017, 05:14:56 PM »
I don't know about all that, but I can speak a little about handling a similar situation.

A couple of things that worked for my mom
 - certain "oldies" stations that showed nothing but old shows, from back before there was much violence or sex or controversy or complexity on TV
 - musicals on repeat. My poor father must have "seen" The Sound of Music over 3000 times in my mom's last years - often 3x per day. Something about musicals at least for my mom meant she could watch and watch, I think partly because the songs were in some other part of the brain.

JasonD

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2017, 01:00:13 AM »
Do you have more details of the specific shows?

Also is there a computer in the house that could run some custom code to stream from the web to a Chromecast if plugged into the TV?

ergophobe

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2017, 03:29:05 AM »
Do you have more details of the specific shows?

I think that question was aimed at Rupert, but for my mom, the Andy Griffith show (aka Andy of Maybury) sticks in my mind. Basically, anything with no shooting, raised voices, sex or whatever. The big issue was that she was losing her ability to separate reality from TV so any TV show with "bad" people made her get so worried about the state of the world. Exacerbated anxiety and fear.

JasonD

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2017, 09:59:57 PM »
> I think that question was aimed at Rupert, but for my mom, the Andy Griffith show (aka Andy of Maybury) sticks in my mind

It was but the same principles apply no matter the person of the shows. Here's my simple thinking.

1. TV with a Chromecast. They're cheap and easy to stream to.

2. If the only device plugged into the TV, when the TV is turned on most that I  have encountered will connect straight to it.

3. A simple app, on either a dedicated Raspberry Pi or an existing PC somewhere on the same house network that streams to the Chromecast predetermined programmes.

4. A big physical button with an Infra Red transmitter and another Raspberry Pi (or Arduino) that when pushed, turns the TV on and sends a signal to start the streaming.... In fact, as i am typing this the streaming device at #3 could be the same RP as this.... So just one button and RP combo.


Streaming to a Chromecast is easy to do, and doesn't require much processing power as the Chromecast grabs the stream directly and does the decoding etc. So a RP works well for this, it will simply be used to turn things on and off.

The details and shows matter as the way streams from different sources are enabled and delivered is different... albeit normally via a browser and over https. So, at least for testing purposes a few shows to make sure it all works, makes life easier.

buckworks

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2017, 12:03:04 AM »
>> I think partly because the songs were in some other part of the brain.

Yes.

Many years ago in a music class the professor gave an example to illustrate the point that musical and verbal knowledge were stored in different places within the brain.

She challenged anyone who dared to stand up and SAY the words to "O Canada" (our national anthem).

Several of us tried, and no one was able to say more than a few words without stumbling. But we were able to SING the entire anthem accurately and with gusto.

It was fodder for a lively discussion about different kinds of learning!

On a related note (literally!), even now as an adult, if I need to put something in alphabetical order or think about the alphabet for some reason, the kindergarten alphabet song that goes to the tune of "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" starts playing inside my head.

Rupert

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Re: Streaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2017, 07:26:47 AM »
Musicals... yes its his favourite day out.  There is a local dementia group that does it once a week, and a friends Mum takes him there.

But Yes, I probably don't need more than Phantom of the Opera. Which is great point too Jason, a USB stick might just play if it is the only thing plugged in.....

Then I have an old persons remote arrived, that has a big red button.  I can disable the others, or put tape over them. 

The Chromecast and PI is probably beyond me certainly of doing a quick job :)  There is a PC in the house, but it is so slow now with all the stuff he has on it (Think virus's as well as too many versions of Photoshop, Autodesk inventor) that it might or might not stream.

I was thinking too big to complex.... I dont need much of a playlist....  the demand is not for different things, just the right things.

Apologies for not getting back to the thread sooner...  that is all a HUGH help as always.
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JasonD

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2017, 10:31:19 AM »
> USB Stick

Sounds like a very sensible and easy answer :)

> Big red button

I am pretty sure this could literally house everything, albeit with a power cable coming out the bottom and no extra PC would be needed.

https://www.coolcomponents.co.uk/en/big-dome-push-button-red.html?

ukgimp

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2017, 10:40:39 AM »
What about hacking one of those dash buttons? Might actually be a good use for them

http://www.dashbuttondudes.com/blog/2015/12/11/26-amazon-dash-button-hacks

JasonD

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Re: Steaming a selection of programs -how to?
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2017, 10:42:26 AM »
> Dash

not big enough to get a raspberry pi zero inside, so would still need a separate computer somewhere on the network.