Watching good shows?

I don’t download tv shows anymore. When I feel like watching a tv show I point my browser to http://tv.blinkx.com/. They have lot of shows with streaming links in megavideo and few other video streaming sites. But the problem is how to find a good tv show. Selecting the tv show name, then right click to search google for it and click on imdb page to check rating gets boring after you repeat it few times. So I thought of writing a bookmarklet to make the process easier.

IMDB doesn’t provide a direct API to grab ratings. I emailed them few months back asking about an API for another project I was on. This is what they said:

Because IMDb licenses some data from third parties, we cannot offer permission to use it without charging a fee.  We offer custom data feeds as a part of an IMDb Content Licensing Agreement. Because these are custom created feeds, the minimum cost to license data from IMDb is US$15,000 per year.

Seriously?  $15000/year ? So how to get imdb ratings.. I found this php class by alif. It made the things very easy.

All I do with my bookmarklet is sending the show names to that php class hosted on my server, then it searches IMDB and returns the IMDB rating for the show. This serves my needs but there are some problems with this method.

  • There’s no common way to pick tv show/movie names form different sites.  The current bookmarklet works only for blinkx.com. Have to make separate jQuery selectors and regex to grab the names from other sites.
  • Rarely the rating shown is wrong because IMDB search fails to find the exact match and points to some other movie/tv show.