Kbd LEDs: now in notification area (if you need them)

g-s-d, gnome 13 Comments

The picture explains everything (in relation to this bug):

Kbd LEDs

Turned on/off using gconf entry. Open questions:

  1. Should I request stock icons (instead of png files in g-s-d) – for themability?
  2. Should the icon names be added to “well known icons list” in the notification area applet?
  3. Should the gconf entry be made visible through the kbd capplet (checkbox)?
  4. Most important: can anyone with designer skills better than mine create 6 icons that would look better than that?

XKB Geometries

libgnomekbd, xkeyboard-config 6 Comments

There is one interesting request in bugzilla: using notification service for displaying CapsLock/NumLock/ScrollLock state change, for those wireless keyboard that do not have LEDs.

How would you distinguish – what keyboard needs that feature enabled? I guess it would be logical to check XKB geometry… I know, better than anyone, about the sorry state of the geometries now – but it can be improved, right?

gnome-keyboard-applet: as good as gone

g-a, gnome 11 Comments

Today, the applet code is dropped from gnome-applets. Since gnome-settings-daemon now includes the notification icon (automatically appearing/disappearing), the applet is no longer needed.

Back in 1999 (Nov 29) it was the gswitchit applet that was committed to SourceForge. After GUADEC in Dublin it got merged into GNOME, some bits and pieces went to gnome-control-center. The rest is history…

The technology goes on. The functionality stays and improves. The initial point, the applet is gone.

kbd stuff going threezero

g-a, gnome, libgnomekbd 16 Comments

Since gnome panel and applets are about to go relatively soon, I feel obliged to do something about that. Here are some unchained thoughts related to it…

The gnome keyboard indicator applet is to become deprecated. What’s instead? The only viable option, no matter how I dislike it, is the notification area icon. Or, in terms of gtk+, GtkStatusIcon. What’s important is that it cannot be a Gtk widget (there are good reasons for that). So the widget gkbd-indicator that was used by the existing applet, is getting useless – I just can reuse some of its code.

But there is an issue with gnome-screensaver. The screensaver is using gkbd-indicator widget in the unlock dialog (and it has to stay there!). That means I’ll still have to support the widget (unless, hehe, gnome-screensaver would suddenly start implementing notification area conventions). As the result, libgnomekbd will have two “layout indicating UI elements”. Somewhat ugly, on my taste…

PS The GSwitchit Plugins will not be supported by the new GtkStatusIcon-based indicator.

PPS It is still a shame that one cannot easily produce GdkPixbuf using cairo. The way through GdkPixmap does not work correctly because the transparency is lost by gdk_pixbuf_get_from_drawable (“If the specified destination pixbuf is not NULL and it contains alpha information, then the filled pixels will be set to full opacity”). The only way is using some code snippets. Why cannot that be put into gtk?


gdm login screen: how to output current IP address

gnome 2 Comments

I could not find a way to put some text (for example, current IP address) into background of the gdm login screen. ImageMagic to the rescue:

cd /usr/share/gdm/themes/MyTheme
convert -draw \
  "text 10,50 \"`ifconfig wlan1 | awk '/inet addr/{ print $2 }'`\"" \
  background.jpg background.hacked.jpg

Put that line into some startup script (for example, /etc/gdm/Init/Default). Then, change your theme xml (/usr/share/gdm/themes/MyTheme/mytheme.xml) to refer to background.hacked.jpg (instead of background.jpg). Voila.

gnome, hardware No Comments

I am very enthusiastic regarding Stormy Peters becoming the ED of the Board (being one of those people mentioning by Bastien btw;) I am convinced, there is a lot she can do to make the Board more effective, visible and rocking… My sincere congratulations to GNOME and to Stormy! It is a pity I am not attending GUADEC this year, so I cannot celebrate the event with the crowd.

Last Friday, I got wonderful set-top box ItGate TGM 220. Linux, PowerPC,  cool and sexy. The greatest disappointment was to find that unofficial plugin for VLC AKA “VLC Frontend” (very handy thing, allows streaming anything from VLC to set-top box) seems to be closed source. And it only works with the old version of VLC (I do not even mention it being somewhat unstable). What do these guys think about?… I searched high and low – there are only binaries on the net 🙁 And the development forum is in German – unpleasant surprise… Second disappointment – lack of support for UPnP and bonjour. It is 2008 after all, people…

Keyboard is not configured in GNOME, in some cases

g-c-c 3 Comments

In case your GNOME keyboard configuration is not working at session startup, and you start GNOME session using gdm autologin or startx from console (like in this bug), it was admitted (by Daniel Stone) it is an issue with X server (will be tracked here). Thank for clarification, Daniel (and for enabling my fd.o account as well BTW)!

Languages, countries

g-c-c, libxklavier, xkeyboard-config 14 Comments

For some while, I was being asked why layouts are organized on per country basis. Now, it is time to stop these discussions. I made a large commit to xkeyboard-config, putting loads of ISO (639-2/3166) codes into base.xml.in. So, when next release is out, layouts and variants can be selected by either country or language – whatever is best for the user. Now, I have a request to everyone reading this blog – could you please look at the resulting file and check whether your layouts/variants are listed with proper country/language (please keep in mind – the attributes of a variant are inherited from the enclosing layout, unless explicitly overridden).

The code in libxklavier to support this information is committed (though, some more functions are planned). The gnome-keyboard-properties capplet will benefit of it soon – the code is not in SVN yet, but at least you can look at the screenshot:

The size of the font reflects the number of layouts/variants available for the language.

gswitchit-plugins, GSoC 2008

g-a, xkeyboard-config 2 Comments

The latest release of GSwitchIt plugins is using libsoup 2.2. Because of the high demand, I am upgrading it to latest 2.4 (they broke the API slightly, bad boys!). New release is to be made RSN (actually, the code is already is in SVN).

In case if any student is interested in some fame in X Window universe (and bounty from Google or course), there is a couple of XKB-related projects on XOrg page (see Misc section). Feel free to contact me as mentor if you feel like doing it. A lot of fun (and some share of swear words – I’ll teach you some Russian ones, they are very rude) is guaranteed!

Another plugin

g-a 1 Comment

“GSwitchIt plugins” did not get much care from me last year. Now, another useful plugin is in the development – allowing user to specify any name for the layout labels in the keyboard indicator. So instead of “USA” and “Ger” you can setup “Bush” and “Merk”, if you like. The idea is inspired by this bug.

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