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 Media Companion Status Report

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billyad2000
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PostSubject: Media Companion Status Report   Wed Nov 24, 2010 4:26 am

As a great many people will have noticed, since the summer, development of Media Companion has been almost none existent. I'm not going to go into the reasons for this because they are highly personal, but it has become increasingly apparent that I cannot fully commit myself to the contiued development of Media Companion. It is my fear that MC is dying and after the ammout of work i've committed to this I don't really want to see this happen.

I have thought long and hard about this, and as I see it there are a number of things that can happen.

  1. Nothing changes, I will continue to fix scraper issues and such, and address other problems when I get time and maybe at some future point be able to return to a more active development

  2. I could make Media Companion open source and hope that enough people get involved to bring it back to life

  3. Let it go, Media Companion has had a good run and I should just let it die


Personally, as far as i'm concerned, number 3 is not really an option, even if everyone else stopped using it, I would likely still use it for myself and as such would at least keep the scrapers working.

For me the best option would be to open up the code for Media Companion, perhaps using sourceforge. This would allow other people to contribute to fixing and developing MC. There would no doubt be a great deal of work involved, as i've already stated in previous posts, MC is my first real experience with programming, I am completely self taught using a combination of books and the Internet, and the result is not always pretty. It may even be neccesary to rewrite and reorganise a lot of code. In addition to this, it may also be beneficial if someone were to sign up as project manager. I have little understanding of how opensource works, but I assume that there must be someone in charge keeping developers organised.

For those that would like to sign up for such a challenge then please let me know. Not only would this keep MC alive, but it would certainly help me to develop my own skills. Not only as a programmer, but as someone who would like to participate in a team projects. MC now, and maybe others in the future.

I will look forward to reading your comments, particular from those people who would like to get involved bringing MC back to life.

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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Wed Nov 24, 2010 5:35 am

Billy firstly I would like to wish you all the best for the future and secondly I would like to assist in keeping Media Companion alive.

I too have little knowledge of how opensource actually works & how it all fits in together to create each new version. Hopefully we have a current MC user who possesses that knowledge.

I still think if it is at all possible that you control the direction of MC.....but with the opensource option, people can post the problems they are having and others can submit suggestion to fix the code. You would then determine which code gets used in the next release....

You may open a topic for example for code suggestions for a new feature you want added....

As time goes on you may want to delegate that duty to others if that is what you want to do....

Cheers & all the best

Richard

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digable
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PostSubject: I'm in   Wed Nov 24, 2010 8:30 pm

So, I'm a software developer by profession and would love to help out. This is one of the best tools I've ever used for sorting media and want to continue to make it better. I have access to web severs to host the code (if you didn't want to go through sourceforge) and setup SVN for source saving. I think we should take this app to the next step, using source save, set up a bug tracker, create milestones, etc. Richard has the right idea, Billy you should take point, deciding the direction you want this to go. Let me know what you need/want, I'm ready to get started.
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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Thu Nov 25, 2010 4:26 am

I sorry to hear that things are not letting you pursue your desires. I am thankful for the work that you've put into MC and appreciate that you are thoughtful of its future. I think the open source option is a good idea and am glad you are thinking of it. I've used several other packages in the past that have just disappeared and it would be sad to see that happen with MC. I think SourceForge (or any of the other larger repositories) would be a good place. The nice thing about them is that you get extra exposure just by being there. Feel free to ping me if I can help in any way. Regards.
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coolmanlr
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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Thu Nov 25, 2010 1:38 pm

Billy,

Thanks for the great work. Open source sounds really good. I use Media companion on an almost daily basis and it is just great to have a piece of software actually fit for purpose.
Btw what about the new logo? Would be great to pick on of the logos submitted and embed it in a last release before take off

Regards
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TheOddLinguist
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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Thu Nov 25, 2010 9:19 pm

Billy, as with everyone else here, I extend an immeasurable amount of thanks for the work you've put into this software. ...and although your current situation may prohibit you from actively writing code, I'm certain you'll continue to be the driving force of the software for a long time to come, albeit with the help of the open source community.

Although I'm a web developer, I'd love to contribute in some way to the development of this software...and I hope that opportunity arises. Until then, I offer a suggestion...and hope it sparks some discussion on the pros and cons.

While SourceForge is a strong presence in the open source community--especially in desktop apps--I feel that it is not as conducive to the open, community feeling that projects like Media Companion would benefit from the most. GitHub is a similar service to SourceForge that has truly embraced the community aspect of open source development. Along with source control, it can provide issue tracking, wiki-based documentation, and--of course--a plethora of tools to help grow the development base. Obviously, it is based on the Git version control system, whereas many others use Subversion. I suppose the end decision comes down to the system with which the developers who will be participating are the most comfortable. However, if there are enough members either on the side of Git (which itself is more suited to distributed development, as well) or with their coin in the air, I'd make a strong suggestion to use the Git platform and the service that GitHub provides.

As a notice of disclosure, I do not work on the GitHub team, although I do host all my personal projects there. ...and I'd also add that many of the software projects that I use alongside XBMC and Media Companion (such as SickBeard and CouchPotato) are hosted on GitHub.

I don't intend to start any trouble, and respect that the ones doing the work will make the final decision. ...but I thought I'd put in my two cents and retreat to the corner to let its points lie where they may. Thanks for your time...and I hope to find some way to contribute.


Sincerely,
Christopher David YUDICHAK
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Wizerd
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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Fri Nov 26, 2010 1:37 pm

Well Billy - I, as does everyone else in the MC Forums, apprecaite the time and effort you have put in to make our lives a little easier. We have all used many apps for our media needs, but were never satisfied with the end result - until you developed MC. As you noted, option 3 is not even an option. There are enough people in these forums alone that will be able to help the future developement of our favorite app. Whatever your choice to put the source out to the public, I am sure you will find a resounding amount of people willing to lighten your burden of programming changes and development. You may find, as most do when it goes opensource, that the program is taken to new hieghts. That is my wish for sure.

I hope things work out for you, whichever option is chosen. I will continue to be a supporter in any way I can.

Welcoming a new era for Media Companion.
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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Sat Nov 27, 2010 3:20 am

Such is the way of many projects Smile ...and yes, I speak from the experience of running and co-ordinating open-source community development projects.

I've long been happy with the current functionality of MC (although would always have loved to see Music scraping added) so having the current UI with scrapers kept updated and bugs fixed (there is quite a lot of them in the Bugs forum, no showstoppers, but small ones that might help people cut their teeth on understanding your code) would be fantastic in my books. everything beyond that would be a bonus.

As a repository, I've always disliked SourceForge simply because it is so freaking slow and painful.

My suggestion for consideration would be the CodePlex site (http://www.codeplex.com).

It's fast
It's support numerous clients depending on people's likes, needs, capabilities.

CodePlex includes the following features:
  • Source Code Control
  • Project Discussions
  • Wiki Pages
  • Feature / Issue Tracking
  • Release Downloads
  • News Feed Aggregation

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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Mon Nov 29, 2010 9:32 pm

As everyone else in this post, i wouldn't also like for you to drop this project Billy. Open Source is probably the way.
I'm no top coder, but i know my way around VB.Net, so i would like to try and give a hand for this project to move forward.

Regards
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PostSubject: Regardless...   Mon Nov 29, 2010 11:45 pm

Billy, regardless THANK YOU. I can not believe HOW long it took me to find this solution.
I went here seeing if there was an update and taken a bit aback by this announcement.
Really Option 1 / 3 are the same.
Maybe you could just hook up w/ the XBMC guys and assimilate it that way, XBMC is already open source and maybe piggy back on that structure they have setup for deployment, wikis, bug tracking...etc.

Personally I've been happy with the first release I ever found and only got better. I have some novelties I could love and probably personal preferences but as long as scrapers work, pretty happy.
Thanks again no matter the direction going forward.
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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Wed Dec 01, 2010 1:56 am


I have only been using Media Companion for a few months and was actually in the process of writing something like this when I found this program.

I downloaded media companion and within 15 minutes I threw the source to my software in my recycle bin and just started using Media Companion. You nailed it with this program man.

Very nice piece of software and it fits the bill for what it does perfectly.

I'd be very interested in joining an open source effort to make this software better.

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PostSubject: Great work   Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:19 am

Great work so far Billy, and thanks a lot so far!

I hope you'll be able to pick up the development of Media Companion again. While you are unable to do so at the moment, I think releasing the code as open source would be the best thing to do. Good luck and all the best!

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PostSubject: Re: Media Companion Status Report   Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:48 pm

I'm another one of those "I can't code but I'd hate to see it die," people.
Open source would obviously be the one everyone who uses it would like you to go forward with, if you're comfortable releasing your code to the masses that is...
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