Controlling iTunes from Python

django-tunesBack in 2008 I stumbled on then new API on Mac OS X called Scripting Bridge that enables easy controlling of Cocoa apps (like iTunes) from scripting languages like Python.

I wrote simple proof-of-concept Django app that turned my iPod touch into a remote control. It was cool, even though it didn’t do very much. Now there’s of course native iOS apps for this but I was somewhat surprised that there are still not much code for controlling iTunes via Web. I misplaced my original code so I decided to write it again — just for fun.

So here’s a working class for controlling iTunes, in 58 lines of Python:

 # -*- coding: utf-8 -*- from Foundation import * from ScriptingBridge import *  class iTunes(object):     """     A helper class for interacting with iTunes on Mac OS X via Scripting     Bridge framework.      To use this, launch iTunes and make sure a playlist or an album is ready.      Usage:      >>> player = iTunes()     >>> player.status     'playing'     >>> player.current_track     u'Maison Rilax'     >>> player.current_album     u'Maison Rilax'     >>> player.current_artist     u'Lemonator'     >>> player.pause()     >>> player.status     'paused'     >>>     >>>     >>> player.current_track     u'Not Your Game'      """      def __init__(self): = SBApplication.applicationWithBundleIdentifier_("")      def _get_status(self):         if == 1800426320:             return "playing"         elif == 1800426352:             return "paused"         else:             return "unknown"     status = property(_get_status)      def _get_current_track(self):         return     current_track = property(_get_current_track)      def _get_current_artist(self):         return     current_artist = property(_get_current_artist)      def _get_current_album(self):         return     current_album = property(_get_current_album)      def _set_volume(self, level):         """         level should be an integer between 0-100.         """      def _get_volume(self):         return     volume = property(_get_volume, _set_volume)      def pause(self):      def play(self):         # According to AppleScript documentatin there should be a .play()         # method, but apparently there isn't. So we fake it :)         if self.status == "paused":         def next(self):      def previous(self): 

This could be easily refined into something potentially interesting like a native REST API for iTunes. The downside, of course, is that it only works on a Mac. (The code is available also on BitBucket.)

A somewhat related is a project called Mopidy, which is a Python powered MPD music server for the awesome Spotify music service (that is suposed to finally be launching in US very soon, I hear.). I’m not at all familiar with MPD but I think it wouldn’t be very difficult to build a Django frontend to a server like Mopidy to get a very slick Web-based interface to your music. Now that would be cool.