GStreamer and the command-line?

I was recently looking for a command-line client for SoundCloud. soundCLI on GitHub appeared to be what I want. But wait, there is a problem with its implementation.

soundCLI uses gstreamer's playbin2 to play audio data. But that apparently requires $DISPLAY to be set.

So no, soundCLI is not a command-line client. It is a command-line client for X11 users.


A bit of research on Stackoverflow and related sites did not tell me how to modify playbin2 usage such that it does not require X11, while it is only playing AUDIO data.

What the HECK is going on here. Are the graphical people trying to silently overtake the world? Is Linux becoming the new Windows? The distinction between CLI and GUI has become more and more blurry in the recent years. I fear for my beloved platform.

If you know how to patch soundCLI to not require X11, please let me know. My current work-around is to replace all gstreamer usage with a simple "system" call to vlc. That works, but it does not give me comment display (since soundCLI doesn't know the playback position anymore) and hangs after every track, requiring me to enter "quit" manually on the VLC prompt. I really would have liked to use mplayer2 for this, but alas, mplayer2 does not support https. Oh well, why would it need to, in this day and age where everyone seems to switch to https by default. Oh well.



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