Dynamically Populating a Dropdown (input selector) (Solution not question)

Apologies if this is in the wrong place but I’ve spent the last 24 hours down a templating rabbit hole.

Basically I wanted a file selector dropdown, so I can run a script that will delete a podcast. I found many solutions/problems on the forum, and got it to work a few ways so I thought I would share as I think this is a little unclear.

My solution/components:

  • Command line sensor (python script that returns a json with a number of files and a list of files and a list of files like
  {"number": 5, "podcasts": ["NOPOD", "How_Do_You_Cope_p0c350qc.mp3", "Doomsday_Watch_with_Arthur_Snell_PMO7960405479.mp3", "Office_Ladies_3448.mp3", "Office_Ladies_8953.mp3"]}

(the NOPOD is always inserted at the front so that when I load the lovelace card clicking the delete button won’t do anything.)
The sensor looks like this

  - platform: command_line
    name: podcast_json
    command: "path/to/script/podcasts_json"
    scan_interval: 60
      - number
      - podcasts
    value_template: "{{ value_json.number }}"

My first attempt just loaded a comma seperated list, but a list of files soon exceeds 255 characters, and required a python script (which I cadged from petro on a post I can’t find) this worked OK, but the final solution is simpler.

As all the filenames are returned in a single key, you can then load that key back into the input select


alias: 'JSON Update Podcast List '
description: ''
 - platform: state
 entity_id: sensor.podcast_json
condition: []
 - service: input_select.set_options
  options: |
   {{ states.sensor.podcast_json.attributes.podcasts }}
  entity_id: input_select.pod1,input_select.pod2
 mode: single

(There are 2 input selectors so I can delete 2 at a time, which is a good enough compromise over having a proper file selection dialogue.

(there are lots of examples of tryong to load options with a for loop, this doesn’t work unless you do the loop inside a json Populating Input_Select options from REST - #3 by makani47

[{%- for item in states("sensor.fpp3_playlists")|from_json %} "{{ item }}"{%
   if not loop.last %}, {% endif %} {%- endfor %}]  

So basically this solution I stumbled across seems simple thant than most I found. And solving this was pretty fun. Suggestions, clarifications, and improvements welcome.