6's Keen TV Listings Scanner

Short Description
This package is intended to run from the system scheduler (crond). It accepts a list of your favorite actors, actresses, TV shows and movies and runs a daily scan for them in zap2it.com's TV listings search engine. It then summarizes the results and E-mails them to you, listing for each program the program's title, the channel it will air on, the time it will air, which search(es) resulted in its being listed and usually a short synopsis of the program. The upshot of this is that you get an E-mail every day listing 15-20 programs that you'll probably want to watch.

Current Status (May 2nd, 2004)
Okay, um, no one has Emailed me about this so far but for the last few days, the Emails I've been getting from my own program have all contained 0 results.

I'm not sure if it's happening for anyone else either, but before anyone Emails, I just wanted to post a message here saying that I'm aware it's happening (or at least it's happening for me) and I intend to try to fix it when I have the time, but I'm not exactly sure when that would be...

But I do still use the program myself and am motivated to maintain it.

... Problem is, I've been learning Perl, and I'm very much of the opinion that this program would have been easier to do in Perl, had I known Perl when I started writing it. So it's a bit odd for me to go back to working on it in C.

But I'll do it nonetheless.

So you all calm down.

If you're feeling anxious, anyhow.

March 20, 2003 --
Just released version 0.5. This basically fixes a bunch of minor bugs, but the big news is that I'm now officially supporting SPARC Solaris and SPARC NetBSD as platforms this program runs on, as I've got a used SPARCstation 5 I got off of eBay for $9.99 with Solaris 8 on it and a SPARCclassic a friend gave me for free with NetBSD on it.

This means you have to type ./configure now before you run make in order to get it to recognize your platform and use the right compile switches. It also means that I fixed a bunch of ugly resource leaks that Linux was very forgiving about but Solaris, and to an even greater degree NetBSD, just wouldn't stand for. (So this program should be friendlier towards your Linux systems now too as a result of this.)

March 21, 2003 --
Welp, this morning I woke up and a bunch of new people had tried this program and Emailed me bug reports and feature requests. (But 1-2 also Emailed to thank me for fixing bugs they'd reported in the past.) So here's a maintenace release, version 0.5.1.

The most important thing about this release is that my attempts to fix memory leaks in 0.5 in order to make NetBSD like this program better actually introduced a phenomenon called "heap scribbling" which was probably causing the program to crash fairly consistantly for a lot of you. This is fixed now. I learned a lot about heap scribbling today. It's a neat sounding term, isn't it? "Heap scribbling." Say that three times fast. Rolls off yer tongue.

Another thing I've added is that someone suggested some small changes to the code that'll make it compile fine under FreeBSD using the NetBSD makefile. So I made those changes, and the configure script will now assign that makefile on FreeBSD systems.

Also I've finally gotten around to making it so the "exact title" searches will actually be exact title searches, like they were on gist.com... And not "whole word" searches like zap2it offers from their web interface.

And there's one more thing I changed, but I'm kindda embarrased about it. If you know anything about programming and want to laugh at me, take a look at the ChangeLog file in the archive. But please don't Email me to tell me how dumb I am. :P

Anyway, enjoy.

April 4th, 2003 --
A few of you have been stopping by my IRC channel (mentioned below) but so far none of you have stuck around long enough for me to actually notice someone's there and wanting to talk to me and to actually join into the conversation. I think on one occasion one of you actually logged off of the channel after I'd just noticed they were on, typed in a hello to them but HADN'T GOTTEN AROUND TO HITTING THE RETURN KEY YET...

I'm mildly frustrated about that.

Zap2It's Position On This Program
I've had a little bit of communication with some official folks at Zap2It specifically about this program. A summary of that communication is available here.

About Me
Here's a link to my personal home page. If anyone wants to chat with me in real time, stop by #6sWorld on EFnet IRC. I'm almost always there. :) My usual nick is `6.

I've also recently started using GnomeMeeting and would love to video conference with anyone else who regularly uses either GnomeMeeting or NetMeeting. I send both audio and video. :)

For those of you who are for some mysterious reason unable to locate my E-mail on both the project page and my home page, it's number6@cox.net. I do read and respond to pretty much all my E-mail at this point, and if I'm home and awake will very likely do so almost immediately.

Project Page
The project page is here.

This page hosted by the wonderful folks at SourceForge Logo. I truly love them, each and every one.