Monthly Archives: April 2013

Lightworks for Linux Public Beta Available for Download

Lightworks for Linux

A public beta of Lightworks, the professional-grade video editor from Editshare, is now officially available for download.

No more limited dry-runs, or badly-communicated access to alpha builds; the app can be downloaded and installed for free on 64bit Ubuntu-based Linux distributions, including the newly released Ubuntu 13.04.

Long Wait

If it seems like you’ve been waiting for this day for years it’s because you have. The first Linux release was promised way back in 2011. 

But we can forgive Editshare, the company behind the app, for their various delays because  Lightworks isn’t ‘just’ another video editor. The ‘professional-grade’ tool has been used in the editing of many well-known television programmes and film industries for years it has a prestigious reputation – one that now graces Linux desktops.

The video editor is free to download and use, with a PRO paid plan offering extra features and codec support for $60/y.

Also note:

  • It’s 64bit Only
  • Requires ATI or Nvidia graphics card & drivers 
  • Only “officially” supported on Ubuntu & Linux Mint
  • Not all tools work/are included on Linux
  • Requires Lightworks account (free)
  • Includes seven day PRO license trial 

On top of this note the following ‘known issues’ concerning the following formats:

  • No H.264 MOV, Quicktime/MPEG4 & AVI export options
  • No support for .WMV
  • AVI playback issues

Want in? You’ll find the download sign-up form and additional information behind the button below.

Download Lightworks for Linux Beta

After installing be sure to check out the ‘Getting Started’ guide below. While it was made for the Windows beta it can be used step-for-step with the Linux version – just ignore any instructions on opening the app from the Start Menu 😉

Getting Started with Lightworks

Lightworks for Linux Public Beta Available for Download OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

Why Did Geary’s Fundraiser Fail?

Geary 0.3.0 Brings Many New Features

Geary E-Mail App Running on Ubuntu 13.04

While the world was busying downloading Ubuntu 13.04 last week, time quietly ran out on a crowd-funding campaign for Linux e-mail app Geary.

Its bid to raise $100,000 towards future development was slightly audacious, if well intentioned. But it stalled, ending on a very clean $50,860 from over 1000 donators.

Open-source projects raising money in this fashion isn’t without precedent. Just a few weeks before Yorba’s effort, Linux video editor Openshot successfully busted past its goal of $20,000 for future development, ending up with almost double.

So why did Geary fail where so many other cash raisers – often for far less useful things – have succeeded? Let’s take a look at some possible reasons…

“$100,000 Was Too Much”

‘Did $100,000 seem too much to ask for what was being offered?’

By far and away the most repeated reasoning against donating was that the $100,000 seemed too much to ask for what was being offered.

Yorba were always very upfront about how expensive the process of making ‘quality software’ was – something many people don’t realise. They argued that $100,000 was the ‘bare minimum’ needed to implement their planned roster of features, pay for staff, and cover other expenses.

But did this phrase of ‘bare minimum’ make some step back? If $100k was a ‘minimum’ level, what would happen after the cash ran out? Another fundraiser? Uncertainty doesn’t woo, not when cash involved.

“The Proposition Wasn’t Unique”

Putting aside the size of the prize being sought, another argument I ran into on social networks and in blog comments was that saying Geary isn’t unique enough.

Uniqueness is subjective. But there’s no denying that Geary approaches desktop e-mail in a less “traditional” way to other, more established e-mail clients. But many just don’t see it. They will simply see another e-mail client wanting to do things its own way instead of building on what’s already available.

Linux, they say, doesn’t need ’yet another e-mail client’. Evolution, Sylpheed, Claws Mail, Thunderbird and the like already have many of the features Geary was seeking money to add.

“People Consider it an Elementary App”

“Geary? That’s an elementary app, right?”

I’ve heard the above statement a few times, and it’s not without foundation: Yorba and the elementary folks “teamed up” late last year to work on the design of Geary. As such there are a few elementary-specific flourishes in the app, like its cog menu. This menu, whilst useful, does lacks traditional “app menu” support (in its various formats) on more widely used desktop environments like GNOME Shell, Unity and Cinnamon.

The jarring of design approaches aside, it’s conceivable that some who saw the campaign simply thought: “I don’t use elementary, so this wouldn’t benefit me.”

A shame if so.

“They Chose The Wrong Platform”

I have a Kickstarter account; everything is set-up so when I see a project I like I can quickly click a button to throw money at the screen. Easy. As. Pie.

But for Geary’s fundraiser Yorba chose the less well-known IndieGoGo site. While still a popular route to raise money it pales in the shadow of the indomitable Kickstarter.

So it’s probable that some of those coming across the campaign wanted to donate but simply didn’t savour the idea of having to sign up for yet another account, add payment info to it, fill in contact details, etc. In fact, truth be told, this inconvenience stopped me donating straight away.

“Not Enough Press”

‘Geary’s Campaign Even Made it On To TechCrunch.’

Of all the examples on this list this final one is the least likely. Coverage of Geary’s fundraiser graced many technology publications, linux blogs, and was constantly being Tweeted and reshared on Google+. It even made it on to Techcrunch – one of the largest “tech news sites” in the world – not an easy feat!

Future

Whatever the post-mortem yields, the cold fact is that Yorba don’t have the money they sought, though direct donations to the non-profit are likely to have increased after donators got their pledges refunded.

The good news for Geary fans like me is that Yorba say they are already working ‘to find other sources of income to cover our costs.’

“But obviously we can only continue if we can keep making ends meet.”

Did you donate to Geary’s fundraiser? If not, what put you off? What do you think would have helped the campaign to succeed? 

Why Did Geary’s Fundraiser Fail? OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

How to install Unity Tweak tool in ubuntu 13.04 (Raring Ringtail)

Unity Tweak Tool is a settings manager for the Unity desktop. It provides users with a fast, simple and easy-to-use interface with which to access many useful and little known features and settings of the desktop environment that one may want to configure.
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Hotshots – Screenshot tool with some editing features

Hotshots is a screenshot tool with some editing features. It is particularly suitable for writing documentation (as used in the following chapters) but you can use it to highlight some details on a map image or what ever you want.
Because HotShots is written with Qt, it runs on Windows and Linux (MacOSX isn’t tested yet).
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Press Reaction to Ubuntu 13.04 Is a Muted, “Meh” Affair

perss

Ubuntu 13.04 was released last week – but, unusually, to muted and minimal press coverage compared to previous releases.

The Linux Action Show asked whether Ubuntu 13,04 is the most boring release in the history of Ubuntu. A quick glance at the column inches dedicated to this update would indicate yes. Even outlets who normally offer in-depth run-downs of Ubuntu have struggled to get a hold on this release, with many instead opting for more perfunctory “It’s out & this is what the press release says” overviews than bothering with the formality of a review.

But a few stalwarts have risen to the occasion…

‘Ubuntu 13.04 is a bit of an anti-climax.’ 

Zdnet‘s Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols speaks positively about the performance improvements including in Raring, saying that, on a test machine of his own, ‘Unity [is] much faster than before on the same box’. 

Fellow Zdnet writer Terry Relph-Knight is a bit more strained, and gives the release 6/10. He argues that while 13.04 is a ‘good, solid release‘ it’s also ‘a bit of an anti-climax’ in terms of new features and changes.

This ambivalence is also in play over on PCPro, whose description of Ubuntu 13.04 as a ‘modest update’ that brings ’no major enhancements’ to the desktop is unlikely to result in an influx of new users to Ubuntu.

Several reviewers, including Jon Brodkin of ArsTechnicapick up what isn’t included in 13.04. Brodkin notes that the removal of the workspace switcher in Unity’s Launcher is likely to be ‘disconcerting’ to some users.

‘A victim of confusion and mixed motives.’ 

Datamation‘s Bryce Byfield is far more cutting in his analysis of the release, calling it a ‘victim of confusion’ and ‘mixed motives’ as Canonical attempt to reconcile ‘the principles of simplicity and efficiency [with] its new priority of profitability.’

But it’s Fabian A. Scherschel of the H-Online who hits the nail on the head of this release by concluding that ‘due to the limited number of features [in 13.04] it will be hard for some ..to decide whether they actually want to upgrade.’

Press Reaction to Ubuntu 13.04 Is a Muted, “Meh” Affair OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

Is This The Coolest Ubuntu PC Ever Built?

cirrus7sandwich

German hardware company Cirrus7 are gearing up to release a new Ubuntu-powered PC.

The aluminium-cased Cirrus7 Nimbus is tiny, measuring just 22cm x 22cm with a height a smidge over 5cm.

But since “mini-PCs” aren’t exactly hard to find Cirrus7 have made sure the Nimbus will stand out by making it fanless. From what we can discern the aluminium case is also a passive cooler, able to tame the heat from an Intel Core i7-3770T with a max TDP of 45W.

Specifications

The Cirrus7 Nimbus will be available to customise online before buying, with a choice of three CPUs:

  • Intel i3-3220T @ 2.8Ghz (Dual Core)
  • Intel i5-3570T @ 2.2Ghz (Quad Core)
  • Intel i7-3770T @ 2.5 GHz (Quad Core)

Graphics wise this will offer Intel HD Graphics 2500 for the i3, and Intel HD Graphics 4000 for the i5 and i7.

One of three pre-installed operating systems can be housed on its own mSATA SSD inside the NImbus:

  • Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
  • Ubuntu 13.04
  • Windows 8

Two additional 2.5″ SATA HDDS will be available with extra storage. No word on RAM, or any internal extras like Bluetooth or WiFi, but those are pretty much a given.

Cirrus7 Nimbus Ports

Image credit: Cirrus7

Based on a prototype image shared by the company earlier in the year the following ports will be available:

  • 4 x USB 2.0
  • 4 x USB 3.0
  • HDMI Out
  • Display Port
  • Digital Audio Out
  • 2 x Ethernet
  • Mic in/Audio out

Starting price will be €699 with an expected release date of ‘late May’.

For more information on the device, and see a few extra images, head over the Cirrus7 Website (In German):

Nimbus PC on Cirrus7 Blog

Is This The Coolest Ubuntu PC Ever Built? OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

How To Upgrade to GNOME 3.8 in Ubuntu 13.04

gnome-ubuntu-tileUbuntu 13.04 ships with an older version of the GNOME desktop in its archives. This is great for GNOME-fans wanting stability, less great for those wanting to try the latest release.

Thankfully the GNOME team make it easy to install/upgrade to GNOME 3.8 on Ubuntu 13.04 – and there are plenty of reasons why you might want to do that!

There are caveats aplenty – largely that some of the software is a little unstable – but chances are if you’re competent enough to upgrade your desktop you’re also okay to deal with whatever issues might arise.

How To Upgrade to GNOME 3.8 in Ubuntu 13.04

Add the GNOME 3 PPA

Before you skim-read any further make sure that you’re running Ubuntu 13.04. Y’know, the latest release. Better yet, run Ubuntu GNOME 13.04.

With that out-of-the-way, we’ll first add the GNOME 3 PPA to Ubuntu’s Software Sources. This can be done without using the command line but, for simplicity’s sake, it’s far easier to do so.

Open a new Terminal window and enter the following command carefully.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3

Upgrade or Install GNOME Shell

With the PPA added, you now need to do one of two steps depending on what you have installed.

If you don’t have GNOME Shell installed then run the following command in a new terminal, inputting your password where prompted:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install gnome-shell ubuntu-gnome-desktop

As the various packages are installed the following screen will appear, asking you to choose which display manager – “login screen” – Ubuntu should use:

gnome

Decisions, Decisions…

Both of these options will let you choose a session before logging on (so you can log in to Unity if you so wish). ‘lightdm’ is the Ubuntu default, but for a true GNOME experience, such as getting lock-screen notifications, you’ll want to opt for the GNOME Display Manager (known as GDM).

login screen display managers

LightDM and GDM side by side

If you do have GNOME Shell installed, or are using Ubuntu GNOME, run this command:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Optional Staging PPA for Extra Bits

If you feel super cautious you can also add the GNOME 3 Staging PPA. But – and it’s a big but that you must pay attention to – many components within it are unstable.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3-staging
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Reboot and Login

That’s it – you’re all done. The make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible you’ll want to reboot.

If you’re using the Unity’s default login screen click the Ubuntu logo in the user pod, choose the ‘GNOME’ session, then go ahead and login as normal.

sessions

Unity Greeter’s Session Selector

If you chose the GNOME display manager then choose ‘GNOME’ from the session drop-down before logging in.

If all has gone well you’ll now see something similar to this…

gnome

GNOME 3.8 Desktop in Ubuntu 13.04

A Few Differences

Some differences to note when using GNOME Shell alongside Unity.

Firstly, you’ll see two ‘online accounts’ entries in System Settings. The left-hand one is Ubuntu’s fork. The right-hand is the GNOME version.

For integration with certain GNOME apps, including Documents, Contacts & Evolution and Calendar you’ll want to add your accounts to the right-hand version. For Shotwell, Empathy & Gwibber support you’ll need to use the left-hand version.

online-accounts

System Settings

Also ‘new’ in System Settings are entries for ‘Notifications’ and ‘Search’. Both are self-explanatory; the former lets you pick which apps can send notifications, while the latter concerns which applications/sources show results in the Activities Overlay.

Uninstalling GNOME 3.8

To uninstall the GNOME Shell desktop we need to do a few things.

First installed PPA Purge from the Ubuntu Software Center

Install PPA Purge

Next open a new terminal window and run the following command:

sudo ppa-purge ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3

Pay attention to any prompts that appear in the terminal during downgrade. If you also added the GNOME 3 Staging PPA (see above) you will also need to run:

sudo ppa-purge ppa:gnome3-team/gnome3-staging

Next remove GNOME Shell by running:

sudo apt-get remove gnome-shell ubuntu-gnome-desktop

Clear up any remaining stray applications not removed by the downgrade and removal, then reboot.

How To Upgrade to GNOME 3.8 in Ubuntu 13.04 OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

Get More Out of Ubuntu 13.04 With These Awesome Apps

You’ve installed Ubuntu 13.04, followed our ’10 Things to Do’ guide, and now you want some top-notch apps to use on it.

The Ubuntu Software Center is stuffed full of applications for Ubuntu, and a whole world of third-party applications exist elsewhere. Sorting the digital chaff from the digital wheat can be a daunting task.

To give you a head-start here are our top Ubuntu app suggestions. It’s not an exhaustive list, and there are plenty of awesome apps we haven’t mentioned, but these will get you started.

Social Networking

Turpial Twitter App for Ubuntu

Turpial Twitter App for Ubuntu

Gwibber no longer comes installed by default in Ubuntu 13.04. Instead a Social Lens is on offer. But you can’t tweet or post status updates from it, so if you’re an avid social-media mogul you’ll want to install a dedicated desktop app.

Gwibber’s successor is the Ubuntu-Touch orientated ‘Friends-app’. While it’s available to from the Ubuntu Software Center it’s not the most featured or complete app available. See our review for a bit more information.

To try it yourself hit the install button below.

Install Friends-App

Other Twitter apps available through Ubuntu’s app store include the slick Hotot and the powerful, configurable Turpial (pictured above in single column mode).

Install Hotot   Install Turpial

Non-Software Center options include Birdie – a cute twitter app in development and just about stable enough for daily use. Power users and fans of the multi-column layout owe it to themselves to try, arguably, the best Twitter client available for Linux: Polly. 

Skype is also readily available on Ubuntu.

Skype on Ubuntu Software Center

Web Browsing

Chromium running on Ubuntu 13.04

Chromium running on Ubuntu 13.04

Google Chrome is the most popular web-browser on the planet (if we ignore the luddites chained to Internet Explorer) and for good reason. It’s fast, featured, and is now the only way to get an updated version of Adobe Flash on Linux.

Installing it easy, just head over to the Google Chrome download page (link below) and select the .deb installer option. Once fully downloaded simply duble-click on the .deb to begin installation.

Download Google Chrome for Linux

If that sounds a bit too much like hard-work you could plump for Chromium, an open-source version of Google Chrome. It doesn’t come with any of the handy bits built in, so no Flash or PDF reader, but it is available straight from the Ubuntu Software Center.

Install Chromium on Ubuntu

Other top picks include the lightweight GNOME-orientated browser Web, and the ever-reliable Opera.

E-Mail

gmail

GMail Web-App – Marrying The Web & Desktop

Geary is the new ‘go-to’ e-mail client for anyone who wants the ease of use of Gmail but in a desktop app. It supports multiple accounts from all IMAP-supported web-mail services; shows threaded conversations, and integrates nicely with the Ubuntu desktop.

Install Geary in Ubuntu 13.04

If all you use is Gmail then my top tip would be to use the GMail webapp in Ubuntu (see image above).

Once enabled you get new mail alerts, unread count and more right on the desktop. It’s easy to set up – just visit Gmail in Firefox (or Chromium if you have it installed) and, when prompted, hit the ‘install’ button to enable integration.

Music & Video

rdio-app

Rdio Desktop App

If Ubuntu’s default music player Rhythmbox isn’t your thing there is a veritable chorus of other choices available. From the large-library-friendly Clementine, to the iTunes-esque Beatbox. 

If you’re an avid user of cloud music services you can also download the official Spotify for Linux client:

How to Install Spotify for Linux in Ubuntu

Rdio users should check out a natty new Rdio player for the desktop.

Google Music users can get the most out of the service by following the following guide. It has links to all of the apps needed, including a neat desktop music player supporting Google Play Music.

Getting Started with Google Music on Ubuntu

On the video side of things there is pretty much only one recommendation: VLC.

Install VLC in Ubuntu 13.04

Gaming

steam-beta11

Steam. ‘Nuff said.

Click to Install Steam for Linux in Ubuntu

Graphics & Creativity

shutter

Shutter – Useful for Advanced Screenshot Taking

Ubuntu has a basic screenshot tool of its own by default, but for advanced use try Shutter. It supports timed-snapping, image editing (including the adding of text, arrows and highlights); basic image effects; and uploading to popular image sharing services.

Click to Install Shutter in Ubuntu

GIMP is the closest thing to Photoshop available on Linux – and it’s free! There’s a bit of a learning curve but a wealth of online guides, tips, and tutorials to get you started.

Click to Install GIMP in Ubuntu

For video editing there are plenty of options, the most reliable of which is PiTiVi. PiTiVi supports basic editing, lets you add some neat-looking effects to your videos, then export them to online sites like Vimeo and YouTube.

Click to Install PiTiVi in Ubuntu

Productivity

new-nitro-linux-theme

Nitro – Makes To-Do’s Doable.

Nitro is a fantastic to-do manager that is available not only on Ubuntu but Windows, OS X and Google Chrome. It can sync your to-do lists using Dropbox or Ubuntu One. So no-matter where you are or what you’re using you’ll have access to your tasks.

You’ll find Nitro on the Ubuntu Software Center. While it is a free application you will need to an Ubuntu One account to install it.

Nitro on the Ubuntu Software Center

If you’re going to be spending a lot of time infront of your computer screen you should grab RedShift from the Software Center.

This handy tool will adjust the temperature (colour-wise, not heat-wise) of your monitor or laptop screen over the course of the day. This, it’s claimed, will help prevent your eyes from being overly strained.

Click to Install Redshift in Ubuntu

When you really need to knuckle down and concentrate on writing you’ll want to reach for a so-dubbed “distraction free text editor”. FocusWriter is available on Ubuntu for free, and supports a wide array of customisation options so you can tailor the perfect productive environment.

Click to Install FocusWriter in Ubuntu

Get More Out of Ubuntu 13.04 With These Awesome Apps OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

Ubuntu Flavours Release 13.04 Updates

Today wasn’t just release day for Ubuntu. Oh no. It was also release day for the ever-growing family of Ubuntu flavours.

From the lightweight Lubuntu to the gorgeous Ubuntu GNOME. Whether you’re looking for a Unity-alternative, something lightweight for a netbook, or want to get the best KDE experience money can’t buy (cos it’s free), there’s an *buntu release for for everyone.

Variety is, according to someone, the ‘spice of life’.

Ubuntu GNOME 13.04

gnome

Ubuntu GNOME 13.04

This is the first official release of Ubuntu GNOME since it joined the Ubuntu family earlier this year.

  • Firefox is now the default web-browser
  • Ubuntu Software Center and Software Updater added
  • LibreOffice 4.0 replaces Abiword and Gnumeric

The “drawback” for anyone seeking a great GNOME experience with Ubuntu 13.04 is that it’s a release behind, using the GNOME 3.6 releases rather than the newer 3.8 update. That doesn’t mean jot to its performance or functionality; it works fine as it is.

But if you like having the latest features and improvements – of which GNOME 3.8 brought many – then you’ll need to add a few extra PPAs after installing.

Download Ubuntu GNOME 13.04

Lubuntu 13.04

lubuntu-desktop

Lubuntu 13.04 Desktop

Lubuntu is a lightweight LXDE-based flavour with a more ‘traditional’ desktop layout, some handy core apps, and puts emphasis on running well on older hardware.

New features in the release of 13.04

  • Updated artwork, including new theme & wallpapers
  • New installer slideshow
  • File Searching added to File Manager
  • Updated version of Chromium

Minimum system requirements are an Pentium II or Celeron CPU with PAE support, 128 MB of RAM and a couple gigs of hard-drive space for installing.

Lubuntu is one of the few remaining distributions to support PPC. A G4 running clocked @ 867MHz or higher with 640MB RAM is the minimum metal needed to run the desktop properly.

Download Lubuntu 13.04

Xubuntu 13.04

Xubuntu 13.04 - Image Credit: Kamil Nadeem

Xubuntu 13.04 – Image Credit: Kamil Nadeem

The Xubuntu team describe their latest update as more of a ‘maintenance release’ update than a full-fledged upgrade.

  • Theme tweaks, including a new wallpaper
  • Gnumeric spreadsheet app & GIMP re-added
  • Updated versions of Catfish file search & Parole media player
  • Duplicate partitions are no longer shown on desktop or Thunar

This is the first release of Xubuntu that will not fit on a standard blank CD. To install it you’ll instead to burn it to a blank DVD or make use of USB installation.

Download Xubuntu 13.04

Kubuntu 13.04

kubuntu

KDE Plasma 4.10 in Kubuntu 13.04 – Image Credit: Kubuntu.org

Everyone’s favourite KDE distribution ‘Kubuntu’ is also available in a Raring Ringtail flavour. Amongst it’s many, many changes (most of which come from the recently released KDE 4.10) are a:

  • New look installer
  • Unity Dash-like ‘Homerunner’ menu alternative
  • Improved multi-monitor handling
  • Improved version of Muon software installer

Kubuntu 13.04 can be downloaded from the official Kubuntu website. Like most of the other releases, Kubuntu 13.04 is too large to fit on a standard 700MB CD.

Download Kubuntu 13.04

Others

Also seeing new releases today are the education-orientated Ubuntu spin Edubuntuwhich comes with neat new applications – and Ubuntu Studio – which sees a few longstanding audio issues fixed.

Ubuntu Flavours Release 13.04 Updates OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

Next version of ubuntu named as saucy salamander (Ubuntu 13.10)

Congratulations and thanks to the entire extended Ubuntu community for today’s release of Ubuntu 13.04, the Raring Ringtail. Feedback over the past few months on raring has been fantastic – pretty much universal recognition of the performance and quality initiatives Rick’s team have lead and which have been embraced across the platform and the community.
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Read the rest of Next version of ubuntu named as saucy salamander (Ubuntu 13.10) (186 words)


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