New Media Center applications - MCEMailbox, MAMECenter and Harmony 2007
Recently, I've come across a few blog posts announcing new Windows Vista Media Center applications. All of the applications below are written in Media Center Markup Language (MCML), and it is exciting to see the new Media Center platform features in Windows Vista start to gain some momentum. I wanted to post links here so you can take a look if you're interested in learning more. Also, if you're interested in getting started creating your own Media Center application, I encourage you to check out the Windows Media Center SDK for Windows Vista.
I found a post on Ian Dixon's blog with links and screenshots for MCEMailbox. This application is written in MCML for Windows Vista Media Center that allows users to check POP3 and secure POP3 email boxes, and be notified inside of Media Center when new mail arrives. Here are some links to more information about MCEMailbox:
- Original application announcement - http://www.anpark.com/index.php/2006/12/26/working-on-a-new-mcml-application-mcemailbox/
- CodePlex publishing announcement - http://www.anpark.com/index.php/2007/02/16/mcemailbox-codeplex-project-published/
- CodePlex project - http://www.codeplex.com/mcemailbox
Steven Harding posted the following blog post about a week ago: http://thedigitallifestyle.com/cs/blogs/developer/archive/2007/03/06/just-to-prove-i-m-not-completely-full-of-it.aspx. In it, he introduces an alpha version of a Multi Arcade Machine Emulator (MAME) application for Windows Vista Media Center that he has been working on.
The application, named MAMECenter, is written in Media Center Markup Langauge (MCML), and a downloadable MSI and some screenshots are available via the blog post. I tried it out on my system and the UI launched but a list of games never appeared. However, this appears to be because I don't have any ROMs downloaded to the folder that the MAME application is looking for them at. I've also heard from a couple of other people who tried it out and were able to successfully use it within Media Center.
Domia has been working on a new Media Center interface in MCML for their Harmony home automation software. They have posted a video of a beta version of Harmony 2007 in the blog post at http://www.domia.eu/blog/PermaLink,guid,2752d05b-0f02-4b8b-a75b-a0cfeec5f176.aspx. The beta program for this application is already closed because of the large number of subscribers, but the video is really impressive so hopefully there will be a future version that is available for more folks to try out.
<update date="3/18/2007"> Updated the information about MAMECenter. After talking to Steven Harding, I realized I didn't know enough about how the MAME application actually worked behind the scenes. The reason I wasn't seeing any ROMs in MAMECenter inside of Media Center is that I needed to manually download some ROMs and copy them to the MAME folder on my system. </update>