If you have an active Last.fm account and like to switch up your wallpaper from time to time then you’ll love Wallpaperfm!
This python script, by Koant, has been around since at least 2008, but I’ve only recently stumbled across it. It’s easy to start using and is available for Windows, Mac and Linux users!
I’ll help you get started in Linux since that’s what I’ve set it up on. If you need more help or want more configuration options you should look to the information that Koant has posted on his website.
That’s the most basic set of options you can use to create your wallpaper (which you will find after running the script in the “wallpaperfm” folder that was created).
There are three options for the type of wallpaper created:
To specify one of these modes, simply run the wallpaper script with the mode flag set to your choice.
./wallpaperfm.py -u YOURLASTFMUSERNAME -m collage
There are plenty of other settings you can specify such as size, canvas size, filename, profile period, final opacity, cache, excluded albums, local copy, etc.
Suggestions and Ideas
User Interface and Packaging
I’m sure that this script could be simplified further for Linux users (and more specifically, Debian/Ubuntu users) if a user interface were created. It actually seems like a rather simple task since the parameters for the script are well bounded.
Adding this interface to an installer package would also be a very simple task and would most likely get more attention to such a neat tool!
Cron Jobs, Regularly Updating Your Wallpaper
Another thing, if your music preferences are constantly changing like mine, you may be interested in updating your wallpaper in regular intervals. To do this you can setup a Cron job that runs in the background.
While this may sound difficult and confusing, its really not at all and this helps explain a lot. I can even walk you through the steps.
sudo apt-get install gnome-schedule
Open the application (in Ubuntu) through the Applications menu -> System Tools -> Scheduled tasks.
Click the New button and select the Recurrent task type.
Give the task a description.
Enter the command that runs your script. If you followed the steps above then it should be something similar to:
As you can see, the sound indicator is still in alpha stages (print screen taken just before Ubuntu 10.10 alpha 2).
The sound indicator is obviously in the midst of progress, but this is why they call it an Alpha stage. I’m super excited seeing the progress happen before my eyes with every update! Hopefully album art is soon!
Safety notice: I’ve had several emails asking me if its safe to upgrade and this is my response… Living on the cutting edge brings a few perks such as this (seeing the progress of it all), but if you’re serious about your system and need stability then you should hold off until Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick is stable before upgrading. You can always find the cool stuff here and elsewhere around the net. 😉
I’ve given up on cleaning spam comments and spam registrations on my site. If anyone has good advice then I’d be more than happy to hear what you have to say.
Lately, spam has been reaching ~400-500 comments and ~40-80 registrations per day. Managing a blog is starting to become a job. I blame WordPress for not implementing a decent registration blocker and a better spam net to catch this waste of my time. The plugins I’ve tried do nothing for registration spam.
I’d love to hear from you all about what works and what doesn’t! It’s a shame that people stoop low enough to spam blogs hundrends of times per night just to make a buck. When can we all live in peace and say what we want without people trying to trump us?
I recently stumbled upon this neat little application that lets you track your mouse movements in a visual way and save the image that is created!
As you can see, most of my activity is in my second monitor (right) where my web browser rests, between the tabs and content towards the top. My coding habits and text editor occupy the first monitor (left) and show noticeably less mouse movement and more periods of pausing to work with the keyboard or read.
This application is Java based and runs in Windows, Mac and Linux! I’ll give you a quick run down on how to use this application in Ubuntu..
Make sure that you have Java 6 Runtime installed on your computer. If you don’t, open the Ubuntu Software Center and search for Java. You should find “OpenJDK Java 6 Runtime” near the top of the results. Install that before continuing.
Download IOGraph for Linux and save it where ever you like (I saved mine to the desktop).
Before you can open the Java application (a .Jar file), you will need to set proper executable permissions for it. To do this, simply right click on the file and select Properties. In the Permissions tab, check to enable the option labeled “Allow executing file as program” and click close.
Now to run the application, right click on the file again and select “Opera with OpenJDK Java 6 Runtime”.
Now that you’ve got the application running, you can minimize it and let it track your every move! If you’re having trouble, you may be able to find more help with .Jar files here.
The circles represent points where the mouse was left motionless for a period of time. The larger the circle, the longer it was left motionless.
Enjoy making art while you work and please share your results!
While I’m waiting for Opera in Linux to improve further (its already pretty great!), I’ve decided to make a couple of adjustments to make the browser feel a little more integrated.
Get the skin! I’ve created a simple script that extracts the installed default skin and modifies it with all in one quick run. This is very beneficial for me since I like to update my slightly edited skins by merging my modifications with the latest and greatest default skin with only a double click. 😉
The only change to the skin (thus far) is the tab bar background which now allows for a smoother appearance between the tab bar and window title.
Now that news has spread about a potential “Twitter-Killer” coming from Google as early as 10:00am tomorrow (according to trending topics on Twitter), its time for my own dish of speculation.
Around a week ago, I read a blog post mentioning that Google’s Gmail has restricted the use of the label “Buzz”. Reading this, I immediately attempted to create a label named “Buzz”in my own Gmail account and the rumor was confirmed.
Playing off of this small find, I wonder if Google will release a product named “Google Buzz” that integrates into Gmail so you can follow “Twitter-like” updates by simply clicking on the Buzz label.
According to TechCrunch, the new product will be integrating at least two existing Google products, while one is highly speculated to be Gmail. This is where my theory with the Buzz label comes into play. 😉
What do you think this new Google product will be? Any speculation? We’ve all got until 10am Feb. 9, 2010 to guess!
UPDATE (2009-02-09): It looks like my speculations were correct. TechCrunch has a short write up regarding Google Buzz.
UPDATE 2: If you want to start using Google Buzz right away and its not integrated into your Gmail account yet (it should appear between the Inbox and Starred tabs once its been integrated, but it will take some time for most people to receive the update) you can use it on your mobile (iPhone/iPod Touch/Android device) by opening your browser and navigating to “buzz.google.com“. That’s it! Hope your busy buzzing!
If you’re not using Firmware 3 on your iPod Touch or iPhone, then I’m not sure how much this guide will apply to you. You can try looking here for more information.
If you are using Firmware 3 (my iPod Touch is running OS 3.1.2), then I’d suggest you following the guide provided by A. Tres Finocchiaro (aka FatButtLarry) over on his blog.
Following his guide, which is comprised of two lines of terminal commands to copy-n-paste, I was able to have my iPod Touch sync’ing in no time!
While the transfer speed seems to be a bit slow, it is indeed working well! Cover art is transfered flawlessly, everything seems to be in order!
Remember that this project isn’t complete and you are likely to encounter bugs. My experience thus far has been positive, your mileage may vary. Good luck. 😉
Update (2010-02-24): If you are using or plan to upgrade to Ubuntu 10.04, you will not need to manually install any of the software mentioned above. Ubuntu 10.04 brings support for the iPhone and iPod Touch by default. You should not have any problems with your device and Rhythmbox!
I’ve been using a new theme lately for Ubuntu that is based on the appearance of Google Wave. One thing that I hate about Opera in Linux is that it doesn’t automatically inherit the current themes appearance. The only way to make Opera match your current theme is to download a skin for that theme or to make one yourself.
I’ve decided to modify the standard skin by updating the background behind the tabs and changing the scrollbar images to match the rest of my current themes scrollbars.
There are still several more tweaks to make, but for now I’m very satisfied with the integrating feel that these small changes have made.
I may upload this Opera skin later, but not while I’m still tweaking it. In the meantime, if you want this skin then just contact me and I’ll send you what I’ve made so far.