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[caption id=”attachment_1008” align=”alignleft” width=”300” caption=”Keep track of your time with Hamster”]Keep track of your time with Hamster[/caption]

Got a couple of interesting bits for you today, starting with some really great news from the Hamster Project, a time tracking application. My friend Tom wrote about his recent work decoupling the communication layer from the client and the back-end, which will now be handled by dbus. What that really means is that it will be easier to script against hamster and tap into the data that it captures. Here’s a simple code sample from Tom’s page:

import from hamster.client
storage = hamster.client.Storage()

storage.get_todays_facts()  # or any other function for that matter

The future looks very bright and interesting for this project and Tom’s hamster experiments side project alone is worth your time (some really amazing visual effects you can add to your project can be easily done by using his library)!

Now, who on Earth did not hear about the latest Ubuntu release yesterday? It was impossible to check your news feed or social networks and not see the words “Lucid Lynx” splattered all over the place! It’s been more than 3 years since I actually installed and used Ubuntu, so due to some down time I had yesterday I decided to take a peek at 10.04. As far as the user experience and friendliness, nothing has changed. Ubuntu still provides one of the best experiences during the installation of an operating system! From the helpful help text to the spiffy “slides” they display as your system is being installed, it is easy to see why so many have made Ubuntu their distribution of choice.

[caption id=”attachment_1009” align=”aligncenter” width=”300” caption=”Ubuntu’s spiffy boot screen”]Ubuntu's spiffy boot screen[/caption]

Once the system was installed, the first thing that caught my attention was the integration with social media through the handy applet in the far right of the upper menu. Adding my Twitter, Identi.ca and Google Talk information was a breeze but what really tripped me up was that I expected to see the updates from my friends’ feeds to show up as a notification “balloon”. The only time I received such a notification was when someone actually mentioned my name, which does make sense I guess. Also, it would be nice to either start the messenger client (mission-control, is it?) on login if there is a network detected or start it from the same indicator applet using one of those menu entries. Maybe clicking on the “Available” entry should automatically start it in the background? Anyhow, the overall experience was worth the time downloading it and installing it on a virtual machine. The art and attention to minute details shows how much work was put into it and for the entire Desktop Experience (DX) Team I offer my most sincere congratulations!

[caption id=”” align=”alignright” width=”223” caption=”The Princess Bride movie”]The Princess Bride movie[/caption]

Finally, the other day I was shooting the breeze with the guys from work when Tom (different Tom) said:

  • Tom: blah blah blah “The Princess Bride"…
  • Me: What??? Princess bride?
  • Entire UI Team: You’ve never seen “The Princess Bride”?
  • Me: What is “The Princess Bride”?

What followed were several minutes of comments of disbelief and how could I possible not have watched this movie. That’s when Tom challenged me to ask “the internets” if I should watch it not.

Well, since it is Friday and all, why not then? :) Voice your opinion here!

Disclaimer: I really don’t know anything about this movie, so no spoilers, please. :)


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