Category Archives: App

MiniTube Adds Account-Free Subscription, Heads to Ubuntu Software Centre

MiniTube

MiniTube on the Ubuntu Desktop

MiniTube has been updated with a rather nifty new feature: account-free channel subscriptions.

Version 2.1 of the Adobe Flash-free desktop video player lets you directly subscribe to YouTube channels without needing to login with a YouTube account.

Even better for Ubuntu users, when a new video is available on a subscribed channel a notification bubble will appear.

This latest update also features the following changes:

  • VEVO video playback fixed
  • Faster startup
  • Improved playlist
  • Skipping to the next video now works on Linux

Heading to Ubuntu Software Centre

MiniTube 2.1 will be available to install from the Ubuntu Software Centre in the coming days.

App developer Flavio Tordini hopes that distributing updates directly via the Software Centre will allow ‘easier to install and more up-to-date Minitube for Ubuntu users’.

It’s important that I point out that the updated version will need to be installed manually. If you have an existing version of MiniTube installed, from either a PPA, .Deb or the Ubuntu repositories, you should uninstall it prior to upgrading.

MiniTube 2.1 is not currently live on the Software Centre, but we’ll let you know as soon as it is. In the meantime you can browse the source code on Gitorious.

MiniTube Source

The post MiniTube Adds Account-Free Subscription, Heads to Ubuntu Software Centre appeared first on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Installing and Using Sublime Text In Ubuntu

Though the likes of gedit, vim, emacs, and even Eclipse have covered developers’ needs with open source editors and IDEs, Sublime Text – a closed source editor – has gained a massive following since its first release over five years ago.

Editing Sublime Text settings is a cinch.

Editing Sublime Text settings is a cinch.

Sublime Text couples the customisability of editors like vim and emacs with a modern UI and its conveniences. Its extensibility and cross-platformability means you can use Ubuntu on the desktop, OS X on the laptop, and Windows at work and have the same theme, plugins, and keybindings across all platforms.

Installing

Though Sublime Text isn’t free or open source, the $70 price tag isn’t unreasonable for the casual or hardcore developer looking for a user friendly, but extensible editor. Whether you’re buying or trying, Jevin at Technoreply has a guide for installing Sublime Text globally and providing a .desktop file, complete with a Unity quicklist.

Install Sublime Text 2 on Ubuntu

First Steps

Searching for "indent" in the command palette

Searching for “indent” in the command palette

Though editors are fairly simple things to use – just open and type away – mastering a tool like emacs is an uphill struggle many of us attempt but fail miserably at or simply don’t have the time to undertake.

With Sublime Text, pressing Ctrl–Shift–P  presents a HUD-like “Command Palette” with searchable entries. Forgot to use spaces instead of tabs? Start typing “indent” and Sublime offers any matching commands.

Searching for packages

Searching for packages

The command palette is a quick way to ramp up productivity and to start learning about some of the built-in conveniences that Sublime Text offers. But you may find language-specific commands lacking.

With Sublime Package Control you can leverage both the extensibility of Sublime Text and the wealth of community-driven packages – many of which are open source – without having to fumble with git repositories or even leave the comforts of the command palette.

Sublime Package Control  adds a new “Install Package” command, letting you quickly search, install, and uninstall packages for everything from HTML5 snippets to new themes.

Install Sublime Package Control

Using Sublime Text? Share some of your top tips for using Sublime in Ubuntu in the comments below.

The post Installing and Using Sublime Text In Ubuntu appeared first on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Smuxi IRC App Update Adds Improved Look, New Features

IRC client Smuxi has been updated and refreshed with a new look.

Key changes in the latest release of the open-source chat app include an improved toolbar that makes better use of the space introduced by the quick join bar added in the last release.

Smuxi 0.8.11

Top: Smuxi before update; Bottom: Smuxi after update

New Features in Smuxi IRC Client 0.8.11

Smuxi IRC in Ubuntu 13.04

Smuxi Improves Messaging Menu Feature

  • Toolbar and menu UI tweaks
  • Improved Messaging Menu support
  • Ability to click on a username to start chat/query
  • Support for /exec command added
  • Entry box grows and shrinks automatically
  • Tab completion cycling
  • ‘Reconnect’ entry in Server tab context menu
  • People searching from user list
  • Initial support for Campfire
  • Improved XMPP, including contact list
  • Memory and CPU fixes

For more see the official announcement post @ smuxi.org

Install Smuxi 0.8.11 in Ubuntu

Smuxi 0.8.11 is available for Ubuntu 10.04, 12.04, 12.10, 13.04, and, for those already using it, 13.10.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:meebey/ppa
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install smuxi

The post Smuxi IRC App Update Adds Improved Look, New Features appeared first on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Dual Monitor Brightness Controller for Ubuntu

Brightness Controller_018Ever wanted to control the brightness of your multi monitor setup independently but from the same place? 

I know some of you reading this do as you’ve previously mailed in and asked if we knew of a solution.

Well, we found one.

Brightness Controller is a small tool using Xrandr to let you independently adjust the brightness of your primary and external monitors.

Not being a multi-monitor user myself I can’t confirm how well this app works; or whether it’s a software-based dimmer. But if you think it’d be useful you can find more information on how it works and how to use it on the Github page for the application.

Brightness Controller on Github

The post Dual Monitor Brightness Controller for Ubuntu appeared first on OMG! Ubuntu!.

How To Install Compass.app on Ubuntu

Tired of typing out repetitive CSS? Made the switch to Sass and Compass but can’t remember what terminal commands to use? Compass.app might be just the tool you need!

Sass, a self-described “extension of CSS3″, takes some of the hair-pulling out of CSS. The Compass framework makes Sass a veritable Swiss Army knife, taking care of copious vendor prefixes for everything from rounded corners to drop shadows.

But the downside to “preprocessors” like Sass and Less is they require “compiling” files into CSS before you can use them on your site. Though you can follow the Compass guide to install Compass, “watch” a folder, and automatically recompile files for you from the command line, you can easily forget to run it when you’re juggling multiple projects.

Here’s where Compass.app – a GUI frontend for Compass’ command line tool – comes in. It sits in your menubar, out of the way, but dutifully watching your projects and compiling your Sass files as you update styles and add new projects for it to handle.

compass.app on ubuntu 13.04

Compass.app running on Ubuntu 13.04

Although it’s open-source it’s also available to buy for $10. If you’d rather build it yourself, it’s not the world’s most user-friendly install, but if you’re a web developer using Sass and Compass, you’re probably used to the arcane ways of the command line.

Head over to the blog to follow the step-by-step instructions on using Compass.app in Ubuntu.

How to Install Compass.App on Ubuntu

Thanks to Srinivas Gowda

The post How To Install Compass.app on Ubuntu appeared first on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Ubuntu Touch Apps Available In Ubuntu 13.10

ubuntu-wek

Ubuntu’s convergent goal is to have one OS running across multiple devices. No separate forks; no custom remixes, just one Ubuntu, with different faces depending on the screen it’s being viewed on.

As evidence of that goal the daily builds of Ubuntu 13.10 have welcomed some new applications into the Ubuntu Software Store: Ubuntu Touch Core Apps.

Gallery, Media Player, Notes & the webkit Web Browser are available to install and run on the Ubuntu 13.10 desktop.

All of the applications are in various stages of development (work on Ubuntu Touch and its core apps is ongoing) so don’t expect too much too soon.

That said, let’s take a look at what’s being offered.

Web Browser

The webkit-based web-browser for Ubuntu Touch is fairly basic thus far, but also fairly stable.

The address field, and back/forwards buttons are part of the toolbar (swipe up to show) placed at the bottom.

Tabbed browsing is already supported, and tabs can be launched and closed from a toolbar item. Clicking on a tab and dragging it to the left closes it.

Ubuntu Touch Web Browser

Ubuntu Touch Web Browser

Running on the desktop the browser is fully resizable, and responsive websites – e.g. like ours – adapt seamlessly during this.

If you’re already using Ubuntu 13.10 you can install the web-browser app by clicking the button below.

Install Web Browser App

Notes

If you’ve tried out one of the developer preview builds of Ubuntu Touch then you may have already played with the Notes app.

It’s nothing special; it lets you add and remove notes.

Dragging a note away

Dragging a note away

Install Notes App

Gallery

The Gallery application is the app I am most impressed by already.

Again, if you’ve played with the developer builds on the phone or tablet then nothing you see here will be unfamiliar: you can view your Photo library by event, album or alone.

Individual images can be opened and edited. At the time of writing both Rotate and Crop work fine, but Auto-Enhance does not.

Ubuntu Touch Gallery App

Ubuntu Touch Gallery App

Install Gallery App

Useable

Are they usable as desktop apps? Kind of.

As you’d expect,  the interfaces of applications designed around digit input are not particularly mouse and keyboard friendly. Useable? Yes. Ideal? No.

For example, accessing the toolbar (drag up from the bottom) is hard to do with something as precise as a mouse pointer. Overshooting by a pixel or two and you accidentally end up resizing the window.

That and a lack of keyboard navigation are the only real user experience hurdles one comes up against when trialling these touch apps on the desktop.

In fact, if the toolbars were to remain visible when an app was in desktop mode then I’d probably find myself reaching for something like the Gallery app more often than Shotwell.

The important thing to remember is that its early days for these apps, and for touch apps on the desktop.

You’ll be able to go hands on with more than just touch apps in 13.10 – developers are hoping to include a separate Unity 8 session powered by the new display compositor Mir for willing testers to play with.

The post Ubuntu Touch Apps Available In Ubuntu 13.10 appeared first on OMG! Ubuntu!.

Skype for Linux 4.2 Released With Much Needed Bug Fixes

skype-liuxAn updated version of of Skype for Linux has been released.

“We rolled up our sleeves and reconsidered the heart of the Skype for Linux client,” the company say of the release, adding: “We’re very excited about the results and think that you will be too.”

‘Excited’ may be overstating it a little.

Skype 4,2 for Linux is largely a bug fix release aimed at improving the general stability of the application, its use with Microsoft Accounts (MSN merged into Skype a while back), and fixing a few well-documented faults introduced in the previous release.

These fixes range from the trivial: larger app icons; localizing prices in Skype WiFi prompts; to the much needed: crash fixes; navigation fixes; not showing features where they can’t be used.

Improvements to existing functionality also feature in the update:

  • Multi-monitor screen-sharing works better, with the workspace Skype is open on being shown by default
  • Microsoft Account users will see a ‘Messenger’ group listing their fellow MSA contacts
  • A button for initiating conference calls has been added to the conversations window
  • Voice messaging button available from Options

Download Skype 4.2

The latest release of Skype can be downloaded from the Skype website. Hit the link below to go there. Select the ‘Ubuntu 12.04 Multiarch’ option before downloading. Despite the ’12.04′ in the name this will also install just fine on Ubuntu 12.10.

Download Skype for Linux

Skype advise 64bit Ubuntu users suffering from audio issues to also install the libasound2-plugins:i386 package.

Skype for Linux 4.2 Released With Much Needed Bug Fixes OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

Installing Minecraft on Ubuntu Just Got Easy

minecraft

Looking for an easy way to install and launch Minecraft on Ubuntu? Minecraft Installer makes installing, setting up and using the famous sandbox game a total cinch.

The unofficial tool, made by Cody Garver and Cassidy James, is not as featured as other similar installer/launcher apps, like the popular Mini Minecraft Launcher, so you won’t find support for backing up games or taking screenshots.

But what it lacks in fluff it makes up for in ease of use; Just install, open, log-in, and away you go.

There’s even a Unity Quicklist with links to common Minecraft resources.

unity minecraft

Minecraft Installer – Unity Quicklist with Links to Resources

Minecraft Installer fetches all of the core files from Mojang’s servers so you don’t need to worry about getting anything dodgy; everything is above-board, legal, and wrapped in convenience.

installer

A PPA provides packages for Ubuntu 12.04 through 13.04:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:minecraft-installer-peeps/minecraft-installer
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install minecraft-installer

Once installed simply run the app, enter (or register) your Minecraft details and you’re all set.

Installing Minecraft on Ubuntu Just Got Easy OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

VLC 2.0.6 Released With Boatload of Bug Fixes

vlc-tileA new version of VLC is available for download.

Videolan, the team behind the app, say VLC 2.0.6 is an ‘important update‘ to the 2.x series of the popular media player.

Amongst the fixes and feature improvements users will find:

  • Support for Matroska V4 files
  • Improved DBus and MPRIS interfaces
  • Misc fixes for MKV, Ogg, AVI, WMV file formats
  • HTML Srt Subtitles no longer cause a crash
  • HTTPS playback fixes

A full list of changes can be found @ videolan.org/developers/vlc-branch/NEWS

Installing VLC 2.0.6

The latest stable releases of VLC are available to install on Ubuntu 12.10 and 13.04 from the Videolan Stable Daily PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:videolan/stable-daily 
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install vlc

VLC 2.0.6 Released With Boatload of Bug Fixes OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.

Where’d Gwibber Go in Ubuntu 13.04? And What’s Friends?

Gwibber needs little in-way of introduction. The social networking client has been a default app in Ubuntu since 10.04, but was popular with users long before then too.

But anyone booting into the new-fangled Ubuntu 13.04 desktop later this month will notice that it’s missing; Gwibber does not come pre-installed on Ubuntu any longer.

So what’s going on?

Making Friends with Gwibber

To best understand we have to go back a few months to the launch/announcement of Ubuntu Touch. its unveiling created a storm of interest and opportunity for existing and new Ubuntu developers, not least because it promoted the use of a new, flexible ‘toolkit’ for developing apps – Qt/QML.

Gwibber had been in need of some due love and attention for a while, so its developer, Ken VanDine, took the opportunity to rewrite the app using these newly recommended technologies.

And so this was born:

Friends Apps Full View

Friends-App – The Next Generation Gwibber

But an app is nothing without its data. Alongside the rewritten, recoded and revamped ‘client’, work was also happening on the ‘backend’ to make it leaner, more performant and more reliable than that used by Gwibber in the past.

This new backend, dubbed ‘Friends’, fetches, delivers, and dispatches data to and from the app itself. You can’t see it, but it’s an integral part of the process.

Status Updating in Friends

Supports Many Social Networks – Including Facebook

A Fresh Start

With Friends (the backend) up and running, the Qml Gwibber hooked up to it, and users starting to test it, things began to get a bit confusing for the developers – as Ken explained to me:

“With the rewrite of the gwibber client to QML and the new friends backend, I still saw lots of comments online about gwibber and past experiences.  And as users started filing bugs against the client, it was difficult to distinguish which code base the user was using.”

The solution? A new name.

“Considering it was a completely new code base, even new branding with the awesome new logo, we felt it made sense to start off with a new LP project as well.  And now we have friends-app”

Friends App – So Far

So what’s the ‘new’ client like? It’s okay. It’s clearly not a finished piece of work by any stretch, but the features and functions included all work as they should.

Ken suggests that we view it as being somewhere between a ‘preview’ and a ‘stable’ release, erring against the latter because of a lack of wider testing.

On to how the app runs.

As this is an app made for touch there are features like inline-replying, large action buttons, and ‘drag to refresh’:

Pull To Refresh

Pull To Refresh

Unlike Gwibber past there is now only one column called ‘Timeline’. This displays all statuses, mentions, tweets, etc in on vertical list.

If you think that sounds confusing – and it can be – each status is badged with the network it came from and, for things like mentions, avatars are badged to differentiate them from the rest of the stream:

Replying to a Mention

All Updates, Mentions, Etc Appear in One Column

Ken hopes to re-introduce multi-column views at a later date. ‘Most likely something along the lines of automatically detecting the best layout based on form-factor,‘ he explains.

For portrait/single column users a “tabbed view” will also be introduced, letting you swipe through columns.

“I’ve played with these concepts a bit already, and it is pretty easy to implement in QML and the Ubuntu SDK,’ Ken says, ’I just didn’t want to rush and re-factor all that right as we were landing it in 13.04.”

The client and its new backend don’t support as many services as older versions did but all of the main networks are covered, including Facebook:

inline replying in friends-app

inline replying in friends-app

The compose window lets you choose which network an update is posted to:

gwibber-input

Status Updating in Friends

Notable features missing at present, but pegged for inclusion in later versions:

  • Username autocomplete
  • Status management (deleting a tweet, etc)
  • Twitter searching/filtering
  • Locations
  • Rich media views 

Going Forward

While sexy new Friends client isn’t included in Ubuntu (due to some last minute dependency security issues) all is not lost for social-fiends.

Firstly, Friends is available to install straight from the Ubuntu Software Center, so it’s still pretty much at your fingertips.

Click to Install Friends in Ubuntu 13.04

Secondly, Unity has a social lens installed by default in Raring. While you can’t tweet from it you can view statuses, mentions, messages, etc.

Unity Lens Friends

Unity Lens Friends

Where’d Gwibber Go in Ubuntu 13.04? And What’s Friends? OMG! Ubuntu! – Everything Ubuntu. Daily.