[ Introduction | Prerequisites | Downloading | Compiling | Installing | Getting Showtimes | Using ]

Sample screenshot

Flimsy, a Film Showtimes Viewer for the Agenda VR3


Flimsy is a simple, single-purpose Agenda application: it displays a list of movie theaters, the movies playing at each one, and their showtimes. Flimsy gets its data from Yahoo!, via a Perl script -- Flimsy itself has no mechanism for querying the WWW.

Flimsy was written by Ed Santiago <esm@pobox.com>.


For running on the Agenda:
Flimsy requires a SNOW 1.2.0 rootdisk. If you aren't running that, it should be possible (and easy) to recompile.
For running on your Workstation:
Flimsy requires FLTK, FLEK, and FLPDA, all with the Agenda Computing patches. Flimsy also requires Expat, an XML parser library.
For getting showtimes:
Flimsy_get_listings.pl requires Perl 5.6 or greater, with the following additional modules:

I know those are not part of a standard Perl installation. I know it may be a pain for you to install those (they have umpteen prerequisites of their own). If you're not comfortable installing Perl modules or using CPAN, and can't get help from someone who is, Flimsy is not for you.


The latest version of Flimsy is 0.02. It is available at



The tarball comes with a precompiled SNOW 1.2.0 binary. If you wish to recompile it:

  1. Edit the Makefile, changing any necessary path components to reflect your setup.
  2. Type make SNOW=1


To install on your Agenda, do something like this:

  % rsync -azv flimsy.snow agenda::default/.wmx/Applications/Flimsy
  % rsync -azv flimsy.xpm  agenda::default/pixmaps/.

(this assumes you have the directory /home/default/pixmaps already created on the Agenda). Then log in to the Agenda, and add this line to the file .wmx/.icons:


Launchpad will detect Flimsy in the Applications directory immediately, but you must restart it (click "Done", then start it again) for it to see the new icon.

Getting Showtimes

Flimsy is now installed on your Agenda, but it's useless without any data. You must now fetch showtimes:

  % ./flimsy_get_listings.pl your-ZIP-code

(This may spit out lots of warnings; please ignore them, or, if you feel so inclined, report them to me so I can try to clean up the parsing code).

This will make 7 queries to the Yahoo! showtimes server: one each for today, tomorrow, and so on. It condenses all the info into one XML file, which you then copy to the Agenda:

  % rsync -azv flimsy.xml agenda::default/.

You must do this periodically, of course. If you have a regular script for syncing with your Agenda, you may want to add a step such as

  flimsy_get_listings.pl your-ZIP && rsync -azv flimsy.xml agenda::default/.

Using Flimsy

Flimsy has three main displays, in which the entries are sorted:

Flimsy always starts with the Theater page. As you would expect, tapping on a movie name or a time takes you to the corresponding page:

Tap on a movie name... ...and find out where else it's playing. Tap on a row of times... ...and find out what's playing now.
Main screen, with a click  =>  Movies screen ...then... Movie screen, with a click  =>  by Time
The movie you tapped will be at the top of the page. (it doesn't matter which row, or where in the row... they all go to the same place) Assuming the current time is shortly after 7PM

Next to each theater name, in the far right-hand side, is a question mark. Tapping on this pops up a window showing the theater name, address, and telephone number.

Finally, a menu at bottom (labeled "Today" by default) can be used to select the day for which you want listings.


Flimsy is my first real tool for the Agenda, and also marks my return to C++ after an absence of 14 years. Please forgive me if the source isn't up to your standards.

$Id: index.html,v 1.10 2002/02/21 02:11:12 esm Exp $