Technology

Fast Hack: Telephone to Stream Deck Conversions

What do you do with these previous Android or iPhone telephones and tablets? You will have a variety of choices, however it’s fairly straightforward to construct your individual stream deck with a bit off-the-shelf software program. What’s a stream deck, you ask? The identify comes from its use as a controller for a live-streaming setup, however primarily, it is an LCD touchscreen that may set off issues in your pc.

The software program I’m utilizing is Deckboard, a server for Home windows or Linux and naturally, an Android app. The app is free with some limitations, however for lower than $4 you should purchase the complete model. Nevertheless, even the free model is sort of succesful. You need to use Android cellphone or pill and you may connect with PC with USB cable or WiFi. I’ve discovered that even with WiFi, it is simple to maintain the cellphone charged, so realistically you are going to have a cable, however it would not essentially connect with the host pc.

Linux setup

The setup could be very straightforward. The largest hurdle is that you could be have to arrange your firewall to permit the server to pay attention on port 8500 with TCP. There are a couple of minor points you may need to look out for when putting in with Linux. Has 32-bit and 64-bit variations deb, tar.gz, and appimage format. There’s additionally a snap. The issue with Snap is that it is sandboxed, so you’ll be able to’t simply launch applications with out effort, which is the entire level. I lastly eliminated it and put in the deb file which was advantageous.

There have been nonetheless two different wrinkles. First, whereas the deckboard offers a technique to launch applications, it should be a program from an inventory learn out of your system. That might be acceptable, however the record was not full. I by no means found out why some issues present up within the record and others do not. For instance, the GIMP that appeared on my Functions menu was absent. Nonetheless different issues that have been fairly obscure appeared.

I believed this is perhaps a dealbreaker till I found that Deckboard has a nicely developed plugin system and a kind of plugins enables you to run an arbitrary command line. I believe it is rather less handy, however it’s much more versatile as you’ll be able to launch any program and supply choices for it as nicely.

The one different criticism I had was that once you run this system, it exhibits its configuration interface and locations itself within the system tray. That is nice once you run it for the primary time, however at system startup, it might be good to begin it silently. If there’s an possibility for this I have never discovered it. I will let you know how I solved it later, however, for now, simply keep it up.

structure

After all, putting in it on each machines is simply the start. The entire level of one thing like that is to configure it to your will. This system is aware of easy methods to talk with OBS, Spotify, Twitter and Twitch. However you may as well add frequent applications, URLs, and so on. There are additionally plugins for issues like Discord, Open {Hardware} Monitor, Steam, and extra.

The multimedia panel lets me management media and open sure apps

You may create a bunch of pages so you do not have to cram the whole lot on one web page. The free model limits what number of buttons you’ll be able to have on a web page, however the improve lets you’ve gotten much more area if you’d like. I discovered that three rows of 6 buttons have been excellent for me in panorama mode on my previous Pixel 2 XL.

After all, everybody may have totally different concepts about easy methods to set it up, and also you’re in all probability higher capable of create one thing aesthetic than me. Nevertheless, I attempted to maintain a couple of issues fixed. The highest proper nook of every display screen is a timing button that does nothing, simply exhibits the time). This requires a plugin. The remainder of the highest row is reserved for buttons that open different pages and on each display screen however the primary display screen, the button subsequent to the clock takes you again to foremost.

Creating a brand new button is simple sufficient

That is so helpful as a result of the underside proper button on every display screen opens a multimedia panel. Once more, you won’t like my setup and you may need yours.

It is extremely straightforward to create buttons and pages on PC. You may choose actions starting from keyboard macro to multimedia controls. You may management the mouse, open an internet site or take a screenshot. After all, as I discussed earlier, you may as well run a program.

kind and performance

Graphic Buttons Can Enhance Your Deck However Getting There Is not Clear

My buttons are a bit blurry, I will admit. The icons are constructed into this system and are available from Font Superior. Nevertheless, I did not know you possibly can make every button use it is personal customized graphic. You do that by deciding on the form of the button which may be sq., spherical or a mysterious third possibility that appears like a picture. At first, I believed it meant “totally clear”, but when you choose it after which hit the button within the edit window, it enables you to select a file for the background. I assume I will should reconfigure the whole lot now that I do know.

One factor that is good is you can have a single button that may carry out a number of capabilities. So, for instance, once I press the hackaday button, it not solely switches to the hackaday web page on the deck, however it additionally flips to my hackaday desktop on the PC by sending a keyboard command. It might probably additionally run a script or folder.

Buttons can carry out a couple of motion

It isn’t fairly a scripting language, however it prevents you from binding the button to a bash script in some instances.

remaining piece

I discussed that I did not admire that loading a program on startup even exhibits the primary window. I discovered a straightforward technique to fight this, at the least on KDE. First, at the least run this system. You are able to do this in a couple of methods. I used a KWIN window rule to pressure it to be an icon, however you may as well use kstart to try this. After all, when you’re not utilizing KDE, you will have to search out one other technique to do it and, actually, it would not actually matter when you do not thoughts seeing the config display screen pop up a bit on startup. Is. It’s because along with setting this system to autostart, I’ve additionally began a script file known as deckboard-tidy.sh,



#!/bin/bash
sleep 5
wmctrl -c deckboard


In different phrases, anticipate this system to begin after which shut its window. It nonetheless retains operating within the systemtray. You can even inform the deckboard to not load itself after which carry out your entire loading operation on this script. You may in all probability pull off the identical stunt on different desktops as nicely, however the particulars will rely in your setup.

Actually, this can be a hack that is much more helpful than it’s. However you’ll be able to spend a variety of time tweaking that excellent setup. However it turns that previous cellphone into one thing you should utilize day by day.

For those who desire a extra drastic hack, try Freedeck. Not that there’s just one. If you’d like a extremely helpful hack, it might be good to reverse engineer the deckboard’s TCP protocol in order that we’ve got a Raspberry Pi server for it.

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