Getting content from lantern to phones?


#1

Hi I was wondering if any thought had been given to how people could transfer the content from a lantern to a smart or feature phone?

A use cases might be; I live in Africa, my daughters school has a lantern, I could sync up when I collect her and read the content at home, Or my friend has one but I only see them once a week.

I realise you could copy individual pages using the browser, but that could be quite time consuming.

Will the librarian software have some sort of API that phone apps could access when connected to a lantern? Or would it be a case of scraping the html?

There is also scope that the content could be re-distributed from phone to phone using https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=de.fun2code.android.piratebox Pirate box could even be broadcast as it’s GPL and a fairly small file.


#2

Even with Internet, you don’t really have a better option. Phones aren’t equipped to mass-download things, which means they would need specialized software. Developing such software is completely outside the scope of what we do.

You mean, would it provide a JSON or XML API in addition to HTML? In that case, not right now. Patches are welcome, though.

The initial version of Lantern will focus on Lantern-specific features with no intentional overlap with any of the existing products. People that want custom functionality should turn to Raspberry Pi build.


#3

Thanks Branko.

There are a fair few news apps that automatically download content for offline reading. Most of them are RSS based I imagine.

Do I remember correctly that you have dropped the ‘favorite’ functionality from librarian? I was thinking that perhaps these items could be exposed in a RSS feed. A user could then use an existing RSS reader to store them to their phone.

I guess the alternative would be to wget the entire /files listing to the phone, then create a reader that can display it.

With piratebox i wasnt suggesting you needed to do anything with the code, just pointing it out as a way users could share content offline, if they had the piratebox app.


#4

As I said, creating apps isn’t our focus right now.


#5

Hi Branko

I have been playing around with the opensource Httrack it’s 2.1Mb https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.httrack.android

I think it would be well worth including a hacked version of this so people could easily download the archive from the lantern to their phone.

If I hardcode the lantern URL into it will you include it in the broadcast?

If so what URL will it be? How will DNS etc work when you connect a phone to the lantern wifi signal? Will it just be a ip you need to access? Or will it have some local DNS set up so I access librarian.outernet.is locally?

Thanks

Sam


#6

The default URL that is used to identify Librarian is http://librarian.outernet/.


#7

@branko

Thanks

@Syed @ThaneRichard

What are the chances of getting the 2.1Mb apk file included in the lantern broadcast if I fork it and hack it to be Lantern specific?


#8

As long as it is maintained and documented, I see no problem with broadcasting it.


#9

Great stuff. I’ll take a look at what’s involved & either do it myself, or recruit some friends to help.