Project idea: Social viewing over the internet
Hi, I'm a Network Computing major in Michigan. I already graduated with a bachelor's in Computer Information Systems, and I'm currently working towards a second bachelor's as a post-baccalaureate.

I have used XBMC and other media players in the past, and the feature I've always wished for was an in-player chat client. I often watch videos with long-distance friends over the internet, and we try to sync our playback by "counting down" via Skype.

My idea is to make a plugin that automates this process by acting as a remote control on each client. Playback commands (pause, play, seek, etc.) would send a vote request to the other clients. The other clients can vote on whether or not to accept it ("Yes, let's all agree to pause, start playback, seek, etc.") or not.

I've been thinking of using python-purple for the chat/communicating votes implementation, so users could use their existing IM accounts with this.

Is this a good idea for a project?
Hi kara_h,

GSoC projects generally focus on improving the core software behind XBMC. A chat plugin sounds cool, and it's something that works best as just that -- a plugin.

Social features have been suggested before, and are generally looked down upon by developers. Maybe it's a sensitive spot resulting from Boxee's fork. Maybe us code monkeys are less social to begin with ;-) Regardless, "social" and "plugin" are two words that probably won't hold much merit in a GSoC application.

With that said though, I'd be curious how one would accomplish this. Remote play/pause functionality already exists in JSON, so that's covered. Sending a "Play/Don't Play?" alert question probably wouldn't be too hard. The part I'm curious about is how exactly you might connect the two instances of XBMC. That's the piece that definitely isn't in core. Any thoughts?

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Project idea: Social viewing over the internet0
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