Dmitry Petrov Back

Perlotto - youtube support

All posts from the series can be found here

Ouch: This post was supposed to be published back in September ‘17, but I saved it in a future date. Here you go, anyway.

One more update about Perlotto app (last update is here). I decided to work on it again, because of annoyance I felt from using youtube in web browser. It’s just dumb to go from a decent players we all had to a web page that doesn’t work with multimedia keys to say at least.

Integration appeared to be quite easy and now it’s more or less trivial to extend perlotto to work with your favorite service (pull requests are welcome, btw).

The whole integration part is split into several things that need to be done to make service work:

The last one appeared to be the trickiest, and the reason is that the only way to get this data is to parse title and description, which are free form. For now I decided to go with simple spitting of the title string, but I’m totally sure, that it can be done hundred time better.

One part that I haven’t mention in the list is ads. I’m more or less fine with them, but it appears the without mblock origin youtube plays ad video after every second song and it was annoying to extend that I decided to cut it.

Electron provides a quite convenient api for this usecase, it’s possible to control and intercept requests on every stage of the lifecycle. The only thing that’s tricky is how to setup filters, because filter argument looks very misleading. After some trial and error I ended up with this code:

    const filter = {};
    function initFilters() {
        session.defaultSession.webRequest.onBeforeSendHeaders(filter, (details, callback) => {
            callback({cancel: checkFilters(details.url)});

Calling this function will force electron to pass every single request via the callback, where the actual filter lives:

    function checkFilters(url) {
        return ad_filters.reduce(function(acc, filter) {
            return acc || !!filter.exec(url);
        }, false);

ad_filters is an array with regexes that are applied to the url, any match leads to the blocking of the request (full code there).

Current support is rudimentary and can certainly be improved. Some of the possible features are:

Outro - spotify

Another service that I decided to integrate was spotify. All the steps seemed to be pretty easy, except that I’ve found out that spotify web player doesn’t work in the perlotto due to abscence of widevine plugin.

Adding support required much more work - it should be downloaded separately and version of the plugin should match version of the chrome browser, which sounds like a lot of troubles without real benefit since I’m not a frequent spotify user.

Maybe I’ll do it some day, but if you’re interested, please don’t stop yourself from doing a pull request!