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TV show discovery web app built with Ruby on Rails and the Movie Database API
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README.md

Bingeable.io

Looking for a new show to binge watch?

Bingeable.io has a list of the top 100 TV shows, updated daily, and powered by The Movie Database API.

Click from the list to view not just complete show details, but also includes a direct link to that show's page on JustWatch.com for current available streaming options.

Don't see your favorite show in the top 100 list?

Use the "Search" feature to look up any show by name!

All of this available with no need to create a user account.

Icing on the cake: Bust your side laughing at the randomly generated banner message every time you visit the homepage :)

Built with love using Ruby on Rails; check it out here!

Table of Contents

Technologies Used

Problem

  • Functional requirements:

    • Landing page must list popular tv shows

    • Search bar that produces a list of shows whose titles match the search

    • Click any show title and go to page with more info about that show

  • Technical requirements:

    • Create a full-stack application with a backend that communicates with the movie API.

    • The front-end should be intuitive to use.

    • Accompany code with a full test suite.

    • Deploy site to a web host (e.g. on Amazon EC2, Heroku, Netlify, Google AppEngine, etc.).

Solution

Ruby on Rails was my first choice to get this app built quickly and reliably because the Rails framework relies on convention over configuration. I also love how Rails will show you errors in the browser. You can quickly create views that communicate intuitively with corresponding controller files and the actions defined within.

Handling the API was easy using the HTTParty gem:

  • add gem 'httparty' to the Gemfile,
  • after adding any gem, in the terminal, within the project directory, run $ bundle install,
  • include HTTParty at the top of the controller file just under the class declaration,
  • then, response = HTTParty.get(url with api environment variable) to retrieve a JSON object saved to response you then can iterate over, reference, and get data you need to display.

Once I had the JSON object from the Movie DB API stored in response, I saved each value that I needed to display to an instance variable key, that could then be referenced from the view thanks to Rails convention.

Example:

  • tvshows_controller.rb - show method:

@show["number_of_seasons"] = response["number_of_seasons"].to_s unless response["number_of_seasons"].nil?

  • then in tvshows/show.html.erb:

<p>Seasons: <%= @show["number_of_seasons"].to_s %></p>

The Movie DB has EXCELLENT documentation and even has a "Try it out" tool you can practice with to be sure you are formatting the url correctly before feeding it to HTTParty.get(...) in your project. Here's the three GET requests I used to build this app, all you need is your own API key to start making calls to their database:

Here's additional resources I found very useful while building this project:

Trade-Offs

I had one week to complete this project, so naturally there are certain features, refactoring, and tests that I'm excited to implement in the future,

Specifically:

  • Refactor HTTParty calls to be outside the index, show, and search methods and live within a private method

  • No Models are not used in this Rails project. One use would be if there was a User model, users could store a "Wishlist" of shows they discover and keep track of what they've watched, enjoyed, and rate those shows accordingly

Additional Movie DB API calls I would like to add in the future:

  • top 100 movies, movie search

  • attach reviews to movies/shows

  • actor/actress bio displays, actor search

  • Autocomplete functionality within search

Installation

In your terminal:

  • $ mkdir bingeable creates a folder for the project

  • $ cd bingeable to navigate into the new directory

  • $ git clone https://github.com/Neidley/Bingeable.git to clone the project on your local system

  • $ cd bingeable to navigate into the repository

  • $ bundle install to install necessary dependencies. (note any errors if you need to download/update any global dependencies)

  • $ rails s to start the server (should be localhost:3000 but see terminal response to be sure)

  • navigate to localhost:3000 in your browser

  • yay! you should be running the app locally on your system : )

  • Press CTRL + C in your terminal to stop the server

Testing

  • in your terminal, make sure you are within the project directory. if you run $ ls + ENTER you should see

bingeable yourname$ ls

Gemfile Rakefile config lib public tmp Gemfile.lock app config.ru log spec vendor README.md bin db package.json test

  • rspec spec/controllers/tvshows_controller_spec.rb to run tests

Contacts

Andrew Neidley is the project maintainer. Feel free to contact him with questions, concerns or features you would like to see added!

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