How do I create a TV schedule based on a topic?
January 16, 2008 8:44 AM   Subscribe

How do I create a TV schedule based on a topic?

I'd like to create a TV schedule, preferably delivered via RSS feed, that sorts through upcoming shows by topic.

For example, maybe I want to catch shows that have a green or conservation theme. Is there something that would tell me that such-and-such environmental expert is going to be on Oprah or that Al Gore is going to appear on the Late Show? Maybe a home building show on HGTV is going to have a special on how to build green.

This is just one topic I'm interested in. What I'd like to know is if it's possible and how to do it. Or is there already some fancy Web 2.0 widget out there doing this already?

Thanks in advance!
posted by bristolcat to Technology (4 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: This is not precisely what you're after, but MeeVee highlights shows depending on your interests. The environment may be one of the interests available, or you could cast a wider net with science or nature. I don't know if they have any RSS or widget delivery method, but at the website, your recommended/favorited shows appear at the top of the TV schedule.
posted by desjardins at 1:10 PM on January 16, 2008

Wow, crickets chirping. I really thought there would be more here, which is why I've been lurking.

Since no one has come up with anything better, here's what I would do.

1. Watch the shows you already know you like. TV marketing people are usually (barely) savvy enough to advertise shows that the viewers of the current program are relatively likely to enjoy. So watch a few commercials. I'm sure it'll make someone's day somewhere.
2. Get thee to torrenting. Darned near every TV show currently airing is available via torrent, and with most of the attention going to music and movie sharers, it's still quite safe to pull your favorite shows (because even if you're doing the big no-nos of music and movies, getting sued is like winning a bad lottery. Very, very rare, statistically speaking). The huge benefit to this is that you get the shows commercial free (usually) and they're almost always higher-def than you'll get over-the-air from your local station. Quality varies on these, but it's almost always really good.
3. Use a torrent client that can handle RSS feeds, and pair that with a website that specializes in posting feeds of new TV shows on an RSS-enabled page.

Example: uTorrent, which is RSS-enabled, plus tvRSS, which has feeds for nearly everything watchable.

Then, you tell uTorrent to pull the RSS feed you want, and whenever there's a new entry, it'll automatically download the show for you. This usually take a little tweaking, but once you've got it working, it works.

Hope this helps!
posted by SlyBevel at 10:22 PM on January 16, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks desjardins, I think that's as close as I'm going to get. It's a neat site, regardless.

I'm not really into torrenting and I'd rather watch it live. One of the reasons for this project is so that I can spread the word to others about something that will be on TV. I'm also not after a particular kind of show I already watch - I want an all-encompassing filter that highlights a certain topic. That and I just don't really bother with torrenting TV.

For anyone who finds this question in a search, you can also reference this identical question asked a day later.
posted by bristolcat at 2:50 PM on January 17, 2008

Heh, someone had come up with something better, evidently. Ah well. Glad you found a solution that works for you.
posted by SlyBevel at 5:53 PM on January 17, 2008

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