Update (May, 2008): with the release of LIRC 0.8.3 you no longer need the LIRC patch. Additionally, the forums are now the place to discuss development/use of the patches (particularly this post, which has the latest installation instructions). There's plenty of friendly people there who are more than willing to help out.
It's been a little while since the last update to the drivers, but I wanted to release this new version which has many updates by Christian Leuschen. The biggest feature is support for the output LCDproc command (which lets us control the icons around the outside of the screen!) and also better shutdown support (so you can have it turn on the built-in clock, for example). You can download the patch below (again, the LIRC patch is the same as the original -- there's a bit of work left to do there, but hopefully not much).
As before, the instructions are on the original page, so follow those to install. Here's a photo of the newer features in action (sorry, it's hard to take a photo of an LCD screen at the best of times, and this is at night time to boot...)
Now, the LIRC and LCDproc patches are almost done. I believe all the features that are required are already there, there's just a bit of tidying up to do. Once that's done, I'll be submitting the patches to be included in the CVS of the respective projects. Now, I don't think there'll be a problem with the LCDproc patch, but from what I see, LIRC is undergoing some major changes to get the kernel-mode components included in the kernel, so we'll see how we go there.
As for the screen itself, it "mostly" works now with whatever LCDproc client you throw at it (be it lcdproc itself, or mythlcdserver, etc). The only problem is that these clients do not understand any of the output support present in the driver, so they are unable to drive to the icons on the screen.
But the icons are, in my opinion, one of the best features of the screen! So we've got to do something about that! I believe Christian mentioned he'd patched VDR to (I assume) make use of the icons, which is great, but it doesn't help those of us running MythTV :) so I'm kind of undecided how to go.
Should I patch mythlcdserver to include support for the iMON's icons? Or should I write a totally new client which just controls the icons?
The advantage of the first is that, once you install the latest version of everything, it'll Just WorkTM. It's also quite a bit simpler for me to create a patch for an existing project than to start a whole new project! The disadvantage is that it would mean mythlcdserver will now include iMON-specific code, when most people won't even have an iMON LCD. I guess that's more of a philosophical question than anything, and you could always control it via a
--enable-* option or something.
The advantage of the second option is that it'll work no matter what PVR software you run, or even if you just use lcdproc (though we'd need to have some special code there to query your PVR software for when it's watching TV vs a DVD, etc -- so maybe that's not such a big advantage at all, really). The disadvantage is that it's an extra step for people with the device to install. Additionally, as I mentioned before, I'm quite new at all this Linux stuff and I've certainly never started a whole new project before, so I wouldn't know where to begin...
In the end, I think that patching mythlcdserver would be the most beneficial for most people. Does anyone have thoughts on this? I'm hoping to get started on this patch over the next few weeks...
Anyway, I hope you all enjoy the patch, and please head over to the forums if you have any comments, questions, or suggestions!