Pretty appropriate, post election, I thought. From “Twelve Monkeys”. Mono. Bush. Primates. Monkeys. Yeah.
Alright, get ready to launch Operation Circle of Confusion.
I’d like to expand on the subject of application launchers.
I have been trying to migrate to Linux from MacOS X for a little while now. NLD, Evolution, Red Carpet, Mozilla, OpenOffice, Mono/GTK# make it really easy. But there is still one thing that really make it difficult for me, and that’s switching between applications.
I know most of you Linux heads use Virtual Desktops and you love it. It just doesn’t work for me. I don’t think like that. Add Alt-Tab and Virtual Desktop hotkeys to that and I get even more confused.
I had this discussion with many people and we were able to narrow it down to the fact that Linux (and Windows) Alt-Tab does Windows switching instead of Application switching. One could argue that on those desktops there is no notion of application, GUI wise (unless you’re talking about MDI apps). On Linux I always spend a lot of time looking for my browser window, terminals and GAIM contact list. There are shortcuts, applets, tricks but none seem to work for me.
On MacOS if you’re in one application – which you can switch to from the Dock or Cmd-Tab, you have direct access to all your applications windows very quickly (Cmd-` to switch between them or see them all with F10 for Exposé) . What works for me, on MacOS X is QuickSilver, my application launcher of choice.
QuickSilver is magic, it’s great, it’s fan-tas-tic. QuickSilver scans my browser bookmarks, my applications, the documents in my user directory, my active applications, my IM contact list, my address book. When I type Cmd-Space (user defined), it pops up a little window which lets me input a shortcut:
As you can see from the screenshot, QuickSilver is pretty smart (It knows that NNW is likely to be a short cut for NetNewsWire.app). But it presents me with other choices too including some of my bookmarks, another application and a folder that’s in my home directory.
It also brings up vcards from my address book, documents in my home folder (or any folder I ask it to watch). It’s hard to describe, it does so much. If the first choice it gives me is not what I am looking for, I can scroll down and choose something else and it’ll learn from my selection.
Any item I chose has different default action associated with it; it’ll launch an application, a document, switch to a running application, email a contact, open a bookmark. Beyond the default action, there are other actions available to me, depending on the entity such as openning the folder containing an application, emailing a document, opening the vcard and even opening a bookmark in the WayBack machine !
Add to that a bunch of plugins that allow you to switch songs in Itunes, browse albums, make internet searches, it’s a treasure box. Or Pandora’s Box, maybe.
Now what I’d like, of course is something similar for Linux, something that allows me to switch applications and do a lot more. I don’t know if anybody out there would be interested in implementing this (in Mono + GTK# ? 🙂 ) but I know I would love something like that to exist. Incorporate the power of Beagle for content and path searches and you’ve got a killer app !
Please ? Pretty Please ?
N.B.: there are other Applications Launchers on MacOS X which might have different/better/worse features: Butler, Launchbar. On Windows, AppRocket does the trick.
Actors don’t like to play coma. They feel it limits their range
I am generally quite unmoved by things political. My parents were too much into it and I think I lost interest when I turned three.
Yet, I was raised despising Arafat. My aunt and cousin’s plane had been highjacked to Entebbe in 1976 by PLO forces and rescued by Israeli forces at the Ungandan aiport. As you can imagine the family felt pretty strongly about it (we never had these kind of problems with the People’s Front of Judea nor the Judean People’s Front for that matter).
Watching peace progress under the rule of Rabin and Arafat, I felt for a moment there was some true desire for peace in Yasser’s heart, desire that’s not found in all Israeli’s hearts. But since Rabin’s brutal murder (by an Israeli, I know) and the rapid terror escalation on both sides of the border, I have lost all faith in his honest quest for peace.
Today Yasser is lying in an hospital bed and is unlikely to ever see a peaceful Palestine and Israel (are we ?) nor Sunday morning for that matter. Do I look forward to his death ? Is he (was he) the terrorist that events painted him to be ? Will his successors succeed where he failed, in peace or in terrorism ?
Maybe. I think so. In peace, in peace.
Please. Pretty please.
With a cherry on top.