Neocar Media Center is a very popular, highly customizable car PC frontend with a large European following.
A couple of years ago, I started planning my own car PC installation. I was very excited, and I thought, "In a few days I'll be playing any multimedia files I want in my car!" Assembling the hardware was easy, as there were already plenty of choices for a good car multimedia installation [Hack #52] . I just needed to find good, powerful software to manage all the new functions.
And that was the problem—nothing I found worked how I wanted it to. Some good applications were available, but none of them had all the functions I needed. So, I decided to make my own software.
This hack is about the Neocar Media Center application that I wrote (http://www.neocarmediacenter.com/?language=EN). After reading it, you should have a pretty good idea of whether you want to use my software as the frontend to your car PC.
When I started working on NMC, I had a big problem: I had only rudimentary Visual Basic skills, and I wasn't an experienced programmer. Perhaps this is what led me to really think about the design of my software before I wrote any code. Besides making a frontend application, I wanted a program that was user-configurable, because I wanted users to be able to run it they way they wanted. I also wanted a program that was skinnable, so that I (and other users) could change its appearance with ease. Finally, ...