new applauncher.py

Forum Forums antiX-development Development new applauncher.py

This topic contains 65 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by BobC Jul 24-11:47 pm.

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  • #24128
    Forum Admin
    anticapitalista
    anticapitalista

    So where/which is the final version? I don’t see any Search function.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by anticapitalista.

    Philosophers have interpreted the world in many ways; the point is to change it.

    #24130
    Forum Admin
    Dave
    Dave

    It is to come from my side yet including skidoo’s changes

    Computers are like air conditioners. They work fine until you start opening Windows. ~Author Unknown

    #24131
    Forum Admin
    Dave
    Dave

    Posted what I have so far. It should be functioning with most requests done. I have not fully reviewed it… I think it may still need some comparative finalization with skidoo’s edits and is yet missing the “popular” filter as previously suggested. I am still deciding if it is reasonably doable or if it is going beyond the scope of the app. Also gave it the name app-select as it was more meant to select apps for other programs than to be specifically an app launcher and I still hope to utilize it as such.

    Was looking to send a pull request but did not immediately see how.
    https://gitlab.com/antiX-Dave/app-select

    Computers are like air conditioners. They work fine until you start opening Windows. ~Author Unknown

    #24132
    Member
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    BobC

    I will volunteer to test. I have both desktops and laptops. I don’t have any 32 bit laptops left, so can only test 64 bit or 32bit on 64 bit machines. Let me know when code is ready, and I will add to current b1 to test with quickly.

    PS: I have Skidoo’s version working from run command, but did not work from IceWM keys, and didn’t know how to fix that. IceWM doesn’t like the Alt+F3 in antiX it seems, so I suggest replacing IceWM blank command line on Alt+Ctrl+Space

    key “Alt+Ctrl+Space” a19_tweaked_applauncher.py

    PSS: I must have goofed something, because I saved it again, restarted IceWM and it now works great on Alt+Ctrl+Space

    Let me know when you have a final version to test…

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by BobC.
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by BobC.
    #24144
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    skidoo

    ? Should the applauncher additionally pickup any .desktop items present within ~/.local/share/applications/

    If so, just this exact directory, or recursive?
    (…/TCM/ contains any items which have been added to desktop menu “Personal” submenu)

    #24145
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    skidoo

    to test

    BobC, I expect the primary benefit from “testing” will come from wading through, attempting to launch, all (each of) the items.

    A few may not properly launch (indicating a general problem, beyond the scope of the applauncher context).

    Also, because the utility is not abiding the “OnlyShowIn=” attribute, some of the launchable items may be seem “broken” when launched from this context. Example: a user visits the applauncher during an iceWM session and, if Xfce or MATE are also installed on the system, s/he sees alien items like “enable/disable compositing”.

    To suppress unwanted items, we can create + use an extended XDG desktop attribute, ala “X-antixlauncher-ignore” and plant /etc/skel/ copies of .desktop files for problematic items… but such pre-seeding would only be helpful for a newly-installed O/S or newly-created user accounts.

    =======================

    (a follow-on thought, primarily a note-to-self)

    Related to, but separate from the above, the sysadmin of a given system (or each individual user) may wish to have the ability to suppress display of selected items. Attention to providing this funcionality is not “scope creep”, IMO, and I would plan to add a right-click context menu containing a “never show this item” action. Clicking would place a copy of the targeted .desktop file (containing a postpended “X-antixlauncher-ignore=True” line) into
    ~/.local/share/aplications/

    #24153
    Member
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    BobC

    Skidoo, You know a lot more than I, so consider this constructive brainstorming, and if something is dumb or misguided, don’t feel bad saying so.

    testing – seems to me we should make a list of all what would appear on a stock full system, and test each, then as you say, any that are going to be bad news, add the “X-antixlauncher-ignore” entry for in /etc/skel/. Maybe we could use the program itself to generate the list as desktop entries? And then test them all. I’ll be happy to help work the list.

    ~/.local/share/applications/ idea – I agree with idea of looking there first, and allowing user to use it to block entry from appearing.

    If code to create/edit ~/.local/share/applications/ entries from the screen for blocking is difficult, make that a 19.1 feature enhancement

    Dave and Skidoo, Future idea, ie 19.1 and beyond. anti needs to get 19 out soon…
    A favorite attribute and column would be useful.

    Ok, here is the part where I might be nuts or not. Keep in mind, I’m not a Linux coder, but try to see that the purpose of this tweak is to make it super easy for even a normal person to do repetitive tasks with minimum effort or errors, by recording applauncher run History and making each discrete name/description/exec line like a Personal Menu item that can be searched for with the applauncher and edited and/or replayed anytime. The beauty of this is that instead of asking them to use a Manager type program to maintain a list, we just remember what they did FOR them, and add it to the list as time goes by…

    1. It appears the key for these entries is name, description, exec line
    2. and the first one found in the desktop-path for that key should appear?
    3. There could be a preference option to say History on/off, that becomes the default History setting for this particular run of a found app to launch.
    4. If History is on, remember the program’s most recent run for key with a timestamp last run or modified instead of trying to maintain most recent list or counters. For this to work, we would need to save that timestamp as portion of the desktop entry filename in order make the filenames unique. For example ~/.local/share/applications/history/dillo.2016-04-25T103000.desktop (using $ date +”%FT%H%M%S”) or dillo.1349654346.desktop (using $ date +”%s”).
    5. Trashcan icon available on Personal menu items to delete in case they want to forget they did that! LOL.

    That would allow the applauncher to also work as an automatic Personal Menu manager keeping track of the most recent time you created or ran a particular desktop name with what description and exec line, so you could display, select, edit, and run/save it for the next time. If you are just rerunning one the same as you ran it before, it just renames the file with the new timestamp 🙂

    PS: If that is too far a stretch, I understand. Dave deserves loads of credit for creating quite an app as is.
    Also, please forgive my minor wording errors, having written it at 4:00 am after being on support 24/7 for a week.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by BobC. Reason: the program is/was
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by BobC.
    #24170
    Forum Admin
    Dave
    Dave

    ? Should the applauncher additionally pickup any .desktop items present within ~/.local/share/applications/

    If so, just this exact directory, or recursive?
    (…/TCM/ contains any items which have been added to desktop menu “Personal” submenu)

    I thought about this but have not explored yet. My idea was to add a “Personal: ” tag to the items and possibly doing the same for Desktop (~/Desktop) items and Autostart (~/.config/autostart) items.

    Also, because the utility is not abiding the “OnlyShowIn=” attribute, some of the launchable items may be seem “broken” when launched from this context. Example: a user visits the applauncher during an iceWM session and, if Xfce or MATE are also installed on the system, s/he sees alien items like “enable/disable compositing”.

    Should it abide by this? I like to see all of the items and ignore what I know to be an issue. Perhaps I can make a filter switch in the search area to show/hide only show in items.

    To suppress unwanted items, we can create + use an extended XDG desktop attribute, ala “X-antixlauncher-ignore” and plant /etc/skel/ copies of .desktop files for problematic items… but such pre-seeding would only be helpful for a newly-installed O/S or newly-created user accounts.

    I have tried similar in the past to hide/show/organize the various antiX apps in the menu which are also in the control centre. There should be our own menu files (start of mixed from lxde/xfce menu files) in /etc/xdg/menus/desktop-menu.menu and /usr/share/desktop-directories/

    There is mention of right click menus… We need to think about them some more now as my original plan was to reserve these and buttons at the bottom for how the program was called. This was to pipe a selection to other programs such as the menu-manager and add-desktop and add-start programs.

    Computers are like air conditioners. They work fine until you start opening Windows. ~Author Unknown

    #24176
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    PPC

    Hi! I’m not sure how relevant this info is but I tested the “applauncher.py” in MX Linux- It ran just fine and opened every single application I tested, GUI and terminal applications in a flawless way. The 2 buttons on the bottom translated correctly to my own language.
    Suggestion to avoid much of the need to use translations: If you replace “search/ filter” by a magnifying glass icon, there’s one less thing to translate (at the same time giving applauncher a more modern and visual look), also… if using Skidoo’s idea to present applications on screen, there’s no need to translate “Name /Description / Exec”, leaving only the contents of the drop down menu in English… (I’m betting that would not bother non English speaking users)…
    Also is it me, or the version in the git page presents smaller icons than the original version? (My eyes have been bugging me, so it’s probably me)

    P.

    #24210
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    skidoo

    PPC, swapping a magnifying glass icon in place of “search/ filter” is a good idea.
    FYI, the per-item “name” and “description” strings are read from lines within each .desktop file (translations provided by the upstream maintainers).

    BobC, I hear ya and agree ~~ get it shipped in antiX 19; save the ideas for additional features for later followup.

    #24223
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    PPC

    @Skidoo: by “if using Skidoo’s idea to present applications on screen, there’s no need to translate “Name /Description / Exec”” I meant the line displaying the columns “Name”, “Description” and “Exec”, that the version of applauncher in the git page displayed when I tested it. The names and descriptions of the applications correctly displayed in my own language, like the 2 buttons on the bottom…

    EDIT: I just noticed Drill (the search application, now also searches and runs applications, while also being a quite speedy file searcher. check it out, maybe there’s some ideia that can be applied here? ( https://github.com/yatima1460/Drill/releases)
    I like the idea of having a “all in one” way to launch apps and search files… applauncher is much better at launching apps, showing more info, allowing to scroll the apps list, but the possibility to also search file names is very handy… Maybe for a veryyy future version??? [suggestion of a possible name: All-launcher 🙂 )-

    P.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by PPC.
    #24227
    Member
    manyroads
    manyroads

    Here are a bunch of similar tools which are “fairly available” open source tools (I think they’re all FOSS):

    cerebro
    github.com/emgram769/lighthouse.git
    ulauncher.io (I’m using this right now on my bspwm project)
    kupfer (in repos)
    synapse (in repos)
    rofi (in repos)

    Many are extremely resource light.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by manyroads.

    Pax vobiscum,
    Mark Rabideau - http://many-roads.com
    bspwm MX-18.3 kernel: 5.2.15-antix.1-amd64-smp
    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken
    MX- antiX- BL- ArchLabs

    #24241
    Member
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    BobC

    I have tried kupfer and rofi and I would not call them light. I didn’t see any great “must have” features either. I haven’t tried the others.

    I don’t consider xfce4-appfinder light, either. I see it stays running afterwards. It also forgets instantly what I asked for. Like rofi or kupfer, it is also much better than dmenu, gexec or nothing.

    I downloaded Dave’s program from gitlab, and it is working fine from IceWM on all the program’s I’ve tried so far. Initially I found myself not understanding the search. I would type “sp” to find spacefm file search for example, and it lists a couple of programs that begin with “H” (they had “sp” in the description), but I figured out that if I use the fields pulldown each time to change from All to Name it works exactly as I would like it to, so will just do that each time.

    PS: I installed synapse. I wouldn’t call it light. It did remember recently run programs, including ones called from elsewhere, which is a nice feature, maybe, but you need to pull it down to show you, and the list shown has no scrollbar. It leaves a 24 mb program running in memory afterwards. Dave’s is much lighter, and looks better as is, IMO.

    PSS: I looked at cerebro. It doesn’t look light. It is a java 8 based program and says it comes as an appimage, which I have been warned to question, and so I didn’t look into it further.

    I also looked at lighthouse, but it doesn’t use any visual cues like icons, which I consider a requirement.

    That leaves ulauncher.io and I will try it next. Ok, I admit that I might be half clueless (as opposed to no clue, lol, forgive me, its Saturday), but after finding a .deb and using dpkg -i to install, then apt-get to install a bunch more packages, then fixing broken packages, I did get ulauncher installed, and it created a desktop icon, but didn’t add to the menu, nor did it pop up when I executed it via run, nor did it work from a terminal. The problems were its default hotkey is Ctrl+Space and due to the install troubles, it didn’t appear on the menu until after the menu automatically rebuilt on the next install/menu rebuild via synaptic. It also isn’t light (1.5 mb + 24 mb memory) but has nice features, ie selectable via preferences screens.

    No offense, but can we have Dave’s app launcher work from a hot key? 🙂

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by BobC.
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by BobC.
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by BobC.
    #24252
    Member
    Xecure
    Xecure

    Here are a bunch of similar tools which are “fairly available” open source tools (I think they’re all FOSS):

    cerebro
    github.com/emgram769/lighthouse.git
    ulauncher.io (I’m using this right now on my bspwm project)
    kupfer (in repos)
    synapse (in repos)
    rofi (in repos)

    Many are extremely resource light.

    If we continue this trend, why not use dmenu? It already comes with antiX, no need to “search” for other options. But this is not the point of the applauncher.py development.

    We know there are options out there, and probably much better than anything that can be cooked up in limited time. If the user who installs antiX wants something better, I am sure they can find and add their favorite launchers, and it will be even easier thanks to your post, but be sure that it will add extra dependencies into the antiX system. We don’t want that for the antiX official ISO. It is already difficult to cut down antiX to a CD size ISO as BobC has already proven, why add more bloat to the installer?

    The objective with this applauncher.py is a very VERY lightweight app search and launcher. Can you tell me that any of the previously mentioned launcher occupy LESS than 50 KBytes, or like the current version, less than 10 KBytes? This is a simple launcher to view and search for all installed apps on the system in a very User-friendly way (not like dmenu, that most newbies will be frightened about). If a user is not happy with it, they can search for a “better” one, but with this size, this applauncher.py can already be added to the next antiX 19 ISO barely taking up any space.

    #24256
    Forum Admin
    anticapitalista
    anticapitalista

    applauncher.py (or whatever we call it) will be included on beta2

    Philosophers have interpreted the world in many ways; the point is to change it.

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