I want to be able to easily search through a list of possible asset file locations for particular files, using similar semantics to the way posix shells search for binaries along the PATH based on a command's name.

For instance, if I had this directory structure:

+- sounds
|  +- ding.ogg
|  +- dong.ogg
+- images
   +- foo.png

+- sounds
|  +- ding.flac      # better ding
+- images
   +- bar.png

I want to be able to define some kind of search path; for example this one, that also includes the user's own .local, then falls back to the freedesktop default sounds after my own asset folders:


The end result is that I want to be able to refer to the files with only the basename, instead of manually determining the complete path myself, that would allow me to write something similar to:


  paplay $(find_on_path --ext="ogg,wav,mp3,flac" --path="$FOO_SOUNDS_PATH" "$1")

play_sound ding         # play /usr/local/foo/assets/sounds/ding.flac
play_sound dong         # play /usr/foo/assets/sounds/dong.ogg
# fallback to freedesktop system 'complete' sound:
play_sound complete     # play /usr/share/sounds/freedesktop/stereo/complete.ogg

Note that I'm using sound files since that's a convenient example, but I'm really interested in the more general technique, not specifically in how to play system sounds.

Is there a simple way to reuse these same $PATH semantics for other kinds of resources, and if so, how? If not, how should I be doing this instead?


All right, so here's one way; you may be able to wrap these ideas into a bash script or function:

$ FOO_SOUNDS_PATH=$HOME/.local/foo/assets/sounds:/usr/local/foo/assets/sounds:/usr/foo/assets/sounds:/usr/share/sounds/freedesktop/stereo
$ IFS=':' read -r -a array <<< "$FOO_SOUNDS_PATH" # IFS splits path into array var by ':'
$ echo "${array[@]}"
$ /home/sparrow/.local/foo/assets/sounds /usr/local/foo/assets/sounds /usr/foo/assets/sounds /usr/share/sounds/freedesktop/stereo

Meaning you can extrapolate:

$ for i in "${array[@]}"; do find $i -type f -name *.ogg -or -name *.wav -or -name *.mp3 -or -name *.flac -printf "%f\n"; done

Which would give you all the relevant sound files... You'd have to script the rest in order to save those files as variables to play them on command. I hope I have at least pointed you in the right direction!


Try some variation of this:

$ cat tst.sh
#!/bin/env bash


assFind() {
    local tgt="$1" dir assArr
    IFS=':' read -r -a assArr <<< "$assPath"
    for dir in "${assArr[@]}"; do
        printf 'Searching "%s"\n' "$dir" >&2
        if [[ -e "${dir}/${tgt}" ]]; then
            printf '%s/%s\n' "$dir" "$tgt"
            return 0
    return 1

assFind 'ding.ogg'

$ ./tst.sh
Searching "/foo"
Searching "/bar/whatever"
Searching "/somewhere/else"

Obviously I don't really have those directories or that file on my system, hence no stdout when i ran it.

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