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Building Your First Boxee App – Now Updated For Beta!
27 January 2010 by Rob Spectre

The popular step-by-step gonzo guide to building your first Boxee app has now been edited to reflect the API changes in the Boxee beta.  Several typographical errors and content applicable only to the Boxee Alpha client has been changed and the guide now produces a working app for the new Boxee Beta.

Enjoy!

New Release – State of the Union LIVE
27 January 2010 by Rob Spectre

The 2010 pipeline of release is swelling with a boatload of tasty Gonzee apps on their way to a television near you, but it’s already been too long since my last new app release.  To that end, I’m happy to report that a new live event app has been published for all Boxee users for tonight’s State of the Union address by President Barack Obama.

This milestone address for this young presidency comes after a rough freshman year of roadblocks and setbacks and a particularly difficult week that saw the Democrats lose the Senate supermajority they’ve enjoyed in this past year. Obama addresses an electorate with diminished hopes and increased skepticism of the efficacy of the federal government.

His first State of the Union needs to change the game and merits the attention of any American concerned about employment, healthcare, and the condition of our country.  This Boxee app delivers reporting recapping Obama’s freshman year as president and will feature the live feed of the State of the Union address as soon as it becomes live.

Check out the app now in Boxee’s App Library.

Boxee Launches New Developer Wiki
15 January 2010 by Rob Spectre

Coming off their *huge* week at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the folks at Boxee have released a revamped information resource for Boxee developers.  Most of the content was written by Boxee’s own Shawn Rieger who has been serving capably as the developer’s man on the inside and features a host of previously underdocumented features such as:

Shawn has put a lot of work into this documentation and it really shows – huge ups to the Boxee crew for continuing their commitment to the open source development community that has sprung up around this project!

Using The Sidebar In Your Apps
12 January 2010 by Joshua Jonah

Hi my name is Joshua, I am a boxee and all around Python developer who will now be contributing to gonzee.tv. I have a background in web application and social networking development, but I’m also a huge HTPC nut. Boxee is the perfect middle ground. I hope my articles help you out in times of need.

Without further ado…

The sidebar is used in the factory boxee sections. It’s on the side and lets you sort, filter, and otherwise manipulate the list in the factory boxee sections.

Boxee Movies section with sidebar visible</code>

The sidebar would be a great place to put things like preferences, sorting, and less used items within an app. The information is out of the way, but still in a comfortable place that is consistent throughout the boxee interface.

I’ve been wanting to use this in my own apps to really pull the experience together, so I started tearing apart the boxee skins. There are many “classes” and other things in the boxee skin files that you can use in your own apps to save code and increase consistency. I would recommend any developer to take a look.

I’ve recovered the base code required to have the sidebar working on your app:

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<control type="group" id="9000">
    <include>BrowseListsAnimation</include> # This is required for some reason.
 
    # Put your main app xml here.
    #
    # For example a list:
    <control type="list" id="600">
        <description>Media items</description>
        <posx>40</posx>
        <posy>160</posy>
        <width>600</width>
        <height>520</height>
        <onleft>8000</onleft> # Notice pushing left activates the sidebar from this list.
        <onright>-</onright>
        <onup>200</onup>
        <ondown>-</ondown>
        <scrolltime>200</scrolltime>
        <pagecontrol>-</pagecontrol>
        <orientation>vertical</orientation>
        <itemlayout width="600" height="60">
            <control type="label">
                <posx>0</posx>
                <posy>0</posy>
                <width>560</width>
                <height>40</height>
                <font>font28</font>
                <align>left</align>
                <label>$INFO[ListItem.Label]</label>
                <textcolor>grey</textcolor>
            </control>
        </itemlayout>
        <focusedlayout width="1280" height="60">
            <control type="label">
                <posx>0</posx>
                <posy>0</posy>
                <width>560</width>
                <height>40</height>
                <font>font28</font>
                <align>left</align>
                <scroll>true</scroll>
                <scrollspeed>30</scrollspeed>
                <label>$INFO[ListItem.Label]</label>
                <textcolor>white</textcolor>
            </control>
        </focusedlayout>
    </control>
</control>
 
<control type="group" id="8000"> # This is the sidebar
    <include>BrowseLeftMenuAnimation</include>   # Required for some reason.
    <include>BrowseLeftMenuBackground</include>  # This includes everything to draw the
                                                 # background of the sidebar
    <control type="grouplist">                   # A grouplist is a good idea so that if
        <include>BrowseLeftMenu</include>        # there's too many controls, it can scroll.
        <control type="label" id="402">
            <include>BrowseLeftMenuTitle</include>      # <- there are some 'classes' I found
            <label>[UPPERCASE]Available Feeds[/UPPERCASE]</label>
        </control>
 
        # Include whatever you want on the sidebar here.
        # Make sure to add "<onright>9000</onright>" to the elements so you can get back to
        # your app.
 
    </control>
</control>

Make sure to remove all of the comments before trying this code, the boxee XML parser doesn’t like python comments (#).

This will get you an empty window with a sidebar on the left.

Enjoy.

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