secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

looking for volunteer programmer.

Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:44 pm

so basicaly i thought i'd post it up here as its relevant to media centers.

those 16x2 LCD screens, HD44780's.

is anyone able to write a "plugin" or "add-on" for raspbmc that will take the current playing file name, current playtime and total playtime (of playing video) and output this to one of those screens?

i've asked in other sections here but only help i've been given is links to other sites/threads about it but im not a programmer and i do not understand this stuff.

so basically looking for one person to step up and say "hi, i can do that for you".

the screen is hooked up (and powers up, woot) by the gpio pins. would be handy if it updated the output every second (as i understand it, the output to the screen would require the program to send an "updated" output?)

anyway, anyone able to do this little one for me? tried over on raspbmc forums but didnt get very far. more people needing help over there than people who can give help it would seem.


trouch
Posts: 310
Joined: Fri Aug 03, 2012 7:24 pm
Location: France
Contact: Website

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 08, 2012 1:35 pm

You may take a look at http://lcdproc.org/ which can control serial LCD screen.
It can also control HD44780 throught the LPT port.
I think it can be modified to use the GPIO instead.
I'm also thinking about a LPT driver which will use the GPIOs...

It appears that some people already connected an LCD to the Pi :
http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?p=82643
http://hackaday.com/2012/06/28/using-an ... pberry-pi/

WebIOPi - Raspberry Pi REST Framework to control your Pi from the web
http://store.raspberrypi.com/projects/webiopi
http://code.google.com/p/webiopi/
http://trouch.com

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 08, 2012 2:02 pm

i know this but i need help with the programming to extract data from raspbmc and display it on the screen,

the screen is wired up, just needs someone to volunteer to help with the program so it has a use

welshblob
Posts: 134
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:31 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 08, 2012 5:05 pm

secretreeve wrote:i know this but i need help with the programming to extract data from raspbmc and display it on the screen,

the screen is wired up, just needs someone to volunteer to help with the program so it has a use
Or you to learn some programming skills? Isn't that what the pi is about after all?

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 08, 2012 6:13 pm

or we can keep this on topic. its too advanced for a first time programmer. well its too advanced for myself hence asking for help. "know your limits". i know mine.

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Thu Aug 09, 2012 3:16 pm

btw sorry if last post seemed....snappy.

i just meant that i have 0 programming skills and would like to learn, but really need someone who i could work with via skype or something to essentially guide me through where to start, what im doing and where to go next ect ect.

the program as best i understand needs to work on 2 fronts, talking with raspbmc to get the file name, current playtime and total playtime of that file, then talk to the screen to output that data.

i guess the starting point would be getting a program that can extract the data then advance it from there.

but how do you make a program (or daemon as its been suggested that would be better) to grab that data from raspbmc?

Serac
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:49 pm

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:13 pm

Had a quick look at XBMC and see it already has Lcdproc connectivity - As Raspbmc is based on XBMC, I would have thought it safe to assume it will also support Lcdproc. A starting point would be to look at the advanced user settings under <lcd> and go from there.

If you don't want to use a USB enabled LCD, then it would be a fairly simple task to write a simple Raspberry GPIO driver.

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:29 pm

im not to familiar with the raspbmc settings (and even less with xbmc) but i've gone through them and cant seem to find the advanced user settings letalone LCD options.

also, i have no idea how to write gpio drivers or which of the various ones in the links accross the forum would be best to use.

the reason i dont want to use led is because i already have the screen and its wired up to the gpio

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Thu Aug 09, 2012 5:16 pm

Code: Select all

[align=left][font=monospace]<lcd>
  <rows>2</rows>
  <columns>16</columns>
  <address1>0</address1><line>$INFO[VideoPlayer.Title] $[MusicPlayer.Title] $[MusicPlayer.Artist]</line>
  <address2>17</address2><line>$INFO[LCD.PlayIcon] $INFO[Player.Time]/$INFO[Player.Duration]</line>
  <address3>33</address3>
  <address4>49</addresss4>
  <heartbeat>false</heartbeat>
  <dimonscreensave>false</dimonscreensave>
  <scrolldelay>4</scrolldelay>
  <hostname>localhost</hostname>
</lcd>[/font]
[/align]
how does that look?

idea is to get this sort of thing displayed

The Walking Dead
16:32 / 44:59


or (when using the music player)

Edge Of Glory Lady Gaga
01:16 / 3:32


also, how DO you write a driver? lol

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Sat Aug 11, 2012 9:10 pm

anyone able to knock together a driver for this?

blc
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Sep 05, 2011 9:28 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Sat Aug 11, 2012 11:31 pm

I may be able to shed a bit more light on this; I've used these screens loads in modding projects...

The HD44780 LCDs are usually controlled via a parallel port; this is how LCDProc controls them by default and that's likely the way that any version of XBMC would try to use it. I've used these screens quite often under Windows, and with my Arduino, but never with the Pi.

This is going to need quite a bit of detailed programming. LCDProc isn't going to be an option here, as it looks for devices attached to USB or LPT (parallel port). So not only is someone going to have to figure out the pinout for connecting the HD44780 to the Pi GPIO pins, but they're also going to have to write a program - from scratch - to control the screen via the GPIO. This probably isn't going to be a case of just knocking together a driver...

I don't want to sound like I'm being dismissive, but I don't think this is going to be an easy task. A USB-based LCD screen compatible with LCDProc - such as Matrix Orbital or Crystalfontz - may be a better place to start.

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Sat Aug 11, 2012 11:58 pm

as i said before though, i already have the screen wired in. its not just the cost of the screen either.

its the screen, the wire, the crimps, the crimp housing, the solder wire, the flux. it all adds up and i have to be able to justify those costs to my other half. hence why i dont want to have to replace the screen.

if the LCDproc uses certain ports then surely its possible to "trick" lcdproc into thinking the gpio pins are one of the 2 ports?

blc
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Sep 05, 2011 9:28 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Sun Aug 12, 2012 12:07 am

Then you'll need to know:

Which pins from the HD44780 controller need to be wired up to which GPIO pins
How to control the HD44780 controller at a basic (i.e. bare metal) level
How to control the HD44780 via GPIO on the Pi
How to pull apart the source code for LCDProc to identify the parts associated with controlling the HD44780 over LPT
Re-write those parts of LCDProc to use whatever new code that has been written to control the HD44780 over GPIO
Re-compile LCDProc
Test

If you're really determined to do this, you're probably going to need to get your hands dirty with some code. An ideal place to understand how to control the HD44780 might be the Arduino library: http://www.arduino.cc/en/Reference/LiquidCrystal . The official arduino IDE uses the C programming language and already has built in libraries for controlling the LCD. Once you understand how it needs to be controlled, then you can start to think about how to implement that on the Raspberry Pi.

You're not just talking about rewriting a few lines in a config file here, you're talking about controlling the bits and bytes that get sent to the LCD, the order they're sent in, how long they're sent for, etc.

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Sun Aug 12, 2012 3:43 pm

sounds fun, wish i knew where to start and what im looking at in the arduino library rofl.

honestly though, most code does go over my head, i barely managed to edit xbmc's "advancedsettings.xml" and setup SSH

omg omg when your desktops in the office, Pi is in the lounge, MY GOD does ssh make life easier rofl.

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:47 pm

out of curiosity, would it be easier to create a driver or daemon that essentialy emulates a serial port for lcproc then outputs via the gpio rather than messing with lcdproc?

Minz0r
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 1:16 pm

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Tue Aug 14, 2012 1:23 pm

I am too interessted into using my 16X2 LCD with XBMC on the raspi.
I managed to get the LCD working via GPIO and the python GPIO Library with the sample code from the forums.

To use this LDC via GPIO and XBMC i think one would have to implement a whole new Plugin which is over my Horizont ;)

I would take the Approach to get one USB to Parallel Adaprot which cost 2,50 on the Bay and use the lcdproc plugin from XBMC.

I think its the easyest Way, hope that xbian have the kernelmodule for my Adaptor, will try this out today.

bye

Minz0r
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 1:16 pm

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Tue Aug 14, 2012 7:10 pm

It turns out that my USB to Printer converter isnt supported, it´s a Profilic PL2305.
The only one supported from lcdproc is the lucent uss720 usb2parallel converter.

Please let me know it that has changed.

There are several other ways to use a hd44780 with lcdproc, you can use one ftdi usb2serial converter, but the best Way would be to use the raspi i2c Bus that is delivered on the gpio pins with a PCF8574P port expander chip on a breakout board, you can use up to 127 such devices on one i2c bus.

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 15, 2012 12:50 am

i honestly dont understand why everyone is fixating on using the usb ports for lcdproc.

i mean usb ports are more of a commodity as far as media center usage goes, the gpio is a much more suitable port for the lcd and is part of what they are meant for after all.

usb is just the lazy way out.

Minz0r
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 1:16 pm

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:53 am

secretreeve wrote:i honestly dont understand why everyone is fixating on using the usb ports for lcdproc.
Did you even read my last Comment?
secretreeve wrote:usb is just the lazy way out.
Asking others to do the Work and not reading Comments is the lazy way out. :evil:

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 15, 2012 3:54 pm

i read your comment.

my comment about usb = lazy isnt aimed at you, just a general passing comment.

as for asking someone to do it being lazy? not really, its out of my legue, theres nothing lazy about asking someone to do it for me or help me do it if i know full stop i cant do it myself.

after all, one of the fundemental points of all this is to get people learning to program and working together.

i'd be over the moon if someone chose to take the time to teach me to program by using this project as a starter but its alot more to ask someone to teach than it is to say "can someone make up this program for me?"

so in the long run, i was also taking into consideration other peoples time and blood pressure (im not very easy to teach as im quite slow learner in programming)

User avatar
jackokring
Posts: 818
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2012 8:27 am
Location: London, UK
Contact: ICQ

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:40 pm

secretreeve wrote:i read your comment.

my comment about usb = lazy isnt aimed at you, just a general passing comment.

as for asking someone to do it being lazy? not really, its out of my legue, theres nothing lazy about asking someone to do it for me or help me do it if i know full stop i cant do it myself.

after all, one of the fundemental points of all this is to get people learning to program and working together.

i'd be over the moon if someone chose to take the time to teach me to program by using this project as a starter but its alot more to ask someone to teach than it is to say "can someone make up this program for me?"

so in the long run, i was also taking into consideration other peoples time and blood pressure (im not very easy to teach as im quite slow learner in programming)
I understand your point entirely. Take perl for example. They want a new section in the programming languages to not have to sort through other stuff. I understand that too. They want somewhere they can go totally up there own foobaray hole, and blert new experience quicker and faster so it may later be copied and made into understandable and version 2.0 code. It's all a sin tax.

Not may programmers would take up your challenge, as for free, most can find enough code to be tried, without adding to that. But yes there is no harm in asking, nothing ventured nothing gained.

Cheers Jacko
Pi[NFA]=B256R0USB CL4SD8GB Raspbian Stock.
Pi[Work]=A+256 CL4SD8GB Raspbian Stock.
My favourite constant 1.65056745028

Serac
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:49 pm

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:00 pm

jackokring wrote:Not may programmers would take up your challenge, as for free, most can find enough code to be tried, without adding to that. But yes there is no harm in asking, nothing ventured nothing gained.
Been poking this particular problem (lcdproc+Pi+gpio-LCD) in what little spare time I have over the last day or so. Hacking the hd44780 driver to wiggle gpio pins to drive an LCD isn't particularly difficult. Already have some disjointed bits of code working, just need time to pull it all together..

secretreeve
Posts: 330
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:39 am

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Sat Aug 18, 2012 12:01 pm

its fascinating just to see peoples ideas on how to accomplish this.

its also awesome to see someones managing to get a working output from lcdproc via the gpio, even if it is in a "bit here, bit there" stage hehe.

my media center projects come a little bit to a stop because of trying to sell my watercooling stuff to fund it but ebay kind sucks for PC WC gear and not many forums you can sell it on lol.

still, the fun with the screen progresses, constantly trying different things. none worked as of yet but hey, i never expected them to, its more so i can see programs and muck about with it getting used to this side of linux again lol

Serac
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:49 pm

Re: looking for volunteer programmer.

Sun Aug 19, 2012 3:34 pm

Nutz... http://lists.omnipotent.net/pipermail/l ... 14030.html includes a patch for lcdproc.

The trouble with some of these projects, it is often a race to see who gets to post the code first...

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