Applescript: jpg to base64, in the case of album artwork

Hi together,

As the Now playing widget struggles to get the album artwork if you're streaming a song which is not in your library and I did not find a way to get the now playing information from the mini player (which would be awesome because I could also control the music currently plying on the HomePod), I wrote the following script to download the album artwork as jpg:

-- get the raw bytes of the artwork into a var
tell application "Music" to tell artwork 1 of current track
	set srcBytes to raw data
	-- figure out the proper file extension
	if format is «class PNG » then
		set ext to ".png"
	else
		set ext to ".jpg"
	end if
end tell

-- get the filename to ~/Desktop/cover.ext
set fileName to ((((path to application support folder from user domain) as text) & "BetterTouchTool:" as text) & "music_cover" & ext)
-- write to file
set outFile to open for access file fileName with write permission
-- truncate the file
set eof outFile to 0
-- write the image bytes to the file
write srcBytes to outFile
close access outFile

return fileName

Now the thing is, in order to display it in the Touch Bar I need it to get converted into base64. Any idea how this could be achieved?

Thanks for any help!
Stay safe,
~Caliguvara

Sometimes I'm stupid.

Modified it to save a .png file, giving:

-- get the raw bytes of the artwork into a var
tell application "Music" to tell artwork 1 of current track
	set srcBytes to raw data
	-- figure out the proper file extension
	if format is «class PNG » then
		set ext to ".png"
	else
		set ext to ".png"
	end if
end tell
-- get the filename to ~/Desktop/cover.ext
set fileName to ((((path to application support folder from user domain) as text) & "BetterTouchTool:" as text) & "music_cover" & ext)
-- write to file
set outFile to open for access file fileName with write permission
-- truncate the file
set eof outFile to 0
-- write the image bytes to the file
write srcBytes to outFile
close access outFile
return "{\"text\":\"fileName\", \"icon_path\":\"MY_HARDDRIVE_HERE/Users/Caliguvara/Library/Application Support/BetterTouchTool/music_cover.png\"}"

@Andreas_Hegenberg did I miss something? :thinking: where is the knot in my brain? :sob:

I think this looks good.

Could you try whether escaping the space in your path fixes the issue? I'm not sure if this is necessary:

return "{\"text\":\"fileName\", \"icon_path\":\"MY_HARDDRIVE_HERE/Users/Caliguvara/Library/Application\ Support/BetterTouchTool/music_cover.png\"}"

If this doesn't help I can try to reproduce this later today! Maybe using the BTT_PRESET_PATH instead of the hard coded path would also be a good idea.

return "{\"text\":\"fileName\", \"icon_path\":\"MY_HARDDRIVE_HERE/Users/Caliguvara/Library/Application\ Support/BetterTouchTool/music_cover.png\"}"

Leads to the Error

Expected “"” but found unknown token

What do you mean by using the BTT_PRESET_PATH? :thinking:

I’m not familiar with what the image format requirements are for touchbar widgets, but this won’t be converting JPEG data into PNG data; it merely gives the filename an extension that isn’t appropriate to any file that ends up containing a JPEG image. It’s similar to selecting a .jpg file in Finder and renaming it so that it ends with a .png file extension.

Fair enough. I hoped it would work nevertheless :ghost: From what I saw in the community, your scripting and coding knowledge is far beyond any of my capacities, do you have any hint how I could get the current artwork in Music and get it into the Touch Bar?

I wasn’t implying your method would definitely not work. It is something I would probably try myself because it’s takes one minor edit and half a second to run before ruling something out as being too ridiculous to put past Apple.

But I assume you have tried it, to no avail, so it’s useful to know why it wouldn’t have been one to bank on.

If you’re able to fill in a vital piece of information for me:

...then I am more than happy to give you an idea of the approach I would take. Your initial idea mentioned something about converting JPEG image data into base 64–why ? What are all the potential types of data you’re aware of that would be successfully read and displayed as an image for a widget ? Is this an Apple-defined protocol, or is it intrinsic to BTT ?


I think you need an extra backslash in "Application\ Support", so that it becomes "Application\\ Support".

Well, to be honest I tried to make this post work in Catalina:


As just changing "iTunes" to "Music" did not work out I tried to rewrite the script, which was harder than expected :sweat_smile:
Now, as I got you the link I also checked on the original post from @Andreas_Hegenberg in this thread and figured out it worked (in my defense, last time I tried it under Mojave it did not ). So my problem is somehow solved by this :man_shrugging:t4:

Unfortunately I'm as unfamiliar with this as you are. I kinda was focused on base64 because that's the way I displayed custom icons for now in my widgets.
Anyhow, here is the working code from the other thread:

tell application "System Events"
	set num to count (every process whose name is "Music")
end tell
set maxSize to 20

if num > 0 then
	
	tell application "Music" to tell artwork 1 of current track
		set srcBytes to raw data
		-- figure out the proper file extension
		if format is «class PNG » then
			set ext to ".png"
		else
			set ext to ".jpg"
		end if
	end tell
	
	
	set fileName to ((((path to application support folder from user domain) as text) & "BetterTouchTool:" as text) & "itunes_cover" & ext)
	-- write to file
	set outFile to open for access file fileName with write permission
	-- truncate the file
	set eof outFile to 0
	-- write the image bytes to the file
	write srcBytes to outFile
	close access outFile
	
	
	tell application "Music"
		set playState to (player state as text)
		if playState is equal to "playing" then
			set trackName to name of current track
			set artistName to artist of current track
			set albumName to album of current track
			if length of trackName is greater than maxSize then
				set trackName to text 1 thru (maxSize - 3) of trackName & "..."
			end if
			if length of artistName is greater than maxSize then
				set artistName to text 1 thru (maxSize - 3) of artistName & "..."
			end if
			set trackInfo to trackName & " | " & artistName
		else
			set trackInfo to ""
		end if
		return "{\"text\":\"" & trackInfo & "\",\"icon_path\":\"" & (POSIX path of fileName as text) & "\"}"
	end tell
else
	set trackInfo to "Music close"
	return trackInfo
end if

It gets the title, artist and album too, but that's easy to erase from the code. :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

Great! I'll check if I can somehow integrate the album cover logic into the standard BTT Now Playing widget.

1 Like

This for sure would be awesome!

Is there a way to access the Music Mini Player btw? This would make it possible to control Music playing on an TV or the HomePod too, and be definitively a nice feature :smiley:

No idea :slight_smile: I'm a Spotify user :see_no_evil:
I'll have a look at this whole Apple Music thing!

1 Like

All I want is to be able to get the album cover for the current playing song and set it as a standalone button icon.

The easiest way is to use the now playing widget, and to check "icon only".

1 Like
Imprint | Privacy Policy