Monday, October 25, 2010

Desktop Cleanups Continue

Still working on prepping GNOME 2.30 to replace our very aged GNOME 2.16 server and also on getting Firefox 4 ready. I have been testing different cache lockdowns in gnome-mplayer to find a good middle ground between the clip starting and having enough cache to play without interruptions. Obviously this depends greatly on the remote server, but testing it to find a good sane setting that will work most of the time. I don't want users tinkering with these settings; because they will randomly increase and decrease values and then wonder why things are broken. :)

In testing the workflow of the new Picture Options bar that comes up when you double-click on a picture, I decided to add two very basic features. EOG doesn't have a way to put the image into the clipboard, and it's a shame to have to wait for GIMP to start in order to perform this step. So I added a feature to send the image to the clipboard. It's very common for users to want to rotate pictures they have taken, and having to start EOG to perform this step was clunky. Since EOG doesn't copy to the clipboard, after rotating the photo they then have to save the photo and then double-click on it again. A simple 90 degree clock-wise rotation was added and works great. (seen in screenshot below). The python Image library is awesome and easy to manipulate photos. Did I mention something about clipboards twice? :)

With some help from the avant guys, I was able to get software to better sit under their corresponding launcher icon. This combines the launcher icon with the window list functionality nicely and provides more space on the panel. Next up is pondering the fact that all rdesktop instances come back with a WM_CLASS of "rdesktop". (current panel seen in shot below).

At this point the functionality is mostly in place and it's time to bring over the rest of the software packages and create artwork and icons.

I had to do something clunky to application-browser to get around a bug. In previous versions of GNOME if the user selected this software process again, it would connect to the already running process and reuse it. In the current release there is a bug and it keeps adding another instance to the process list. If a user clicks on this menu system 20 times during the day, they would have 20 processes. :| So the code below resolved that issue. Hopefully a patch is forthcoming; this is some serious nastiness.

Current desktop screenshot:

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