|Submitted: Apr 10 2003|
Updated: Jan 9 2004
SlickBar 0.9.2 for SuperKaramba
Copyright 2003 Matthew Kay (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Licensed Under GPL
NEW VERSION 0.9.2!
This version includes a few bug fixes, and some small feature improvements. I haven't actively worked on SlickBar for about 2 months, so I'm "getting back into it" with a small updated release in the 0.9 series. (On that note, anyone who has tried to email me and hasn't gotten a response, it is because of my "hiatus" in SlickBar development -- just drop me another message). Don't worry, 1.x is still coming, it's just a matter of how/when/in what form.
Anyway, this new version makes the config menu more obvious with a tooltip (middle-click on the K-Button), improves on the systray auto-resize and moving, and fixes an XMMSPanel crash that was caused by streaming media.
Also: for everyone who's been asking for it forever, KICKER AUTO-HIDING IS HERE! Simply go into the configurator and turn the "Hide Kicker" option to On. Then, SlickBar will hide the main kicker panel when started and re-show it when closed. Note that this does NOT disable dcop access to kicker functions!
SlickBar is intended to go a little farther than just being a SuperKaramba "theme". It consists of individual "Panel"s, which can be placed independently of one another using the XML configuration file. As of v0.9, SlickBar now includes a config GUI so you no longer have to edit the config file by hand. The config GUI includes a preview display (with drag and drop panels), and the ability to apply changes without restarting SuperKaramba! To take a look at some of the features lined up for future versions, see the TODO section on the slickbar website: http://www.unrandom.com/Projects/slickbar.php#todo.
- each Panel can be placed independently of the others (the last screenshot has an example of a configuration different than the default)
- the NoatunPanel and XMMSPanel allow you to: go back/fwd, stop, play/pause, open/close the playlist, and do a song seek using the progress bar.
- The QuickLaunchPanel creates an auto-sized panel using KDE links in the QuickLaunch directory, and finds the *right* icons using PyKDE!
- The TaskPanel can be set to any size, and each task button sizes itself to fit inside the bar. As well, it automatically finds the appropriate icon for each task (and is pretty successful) as well as grouping related tasks into single buttons (see screenshot #2).
- The PagerPanel automatically detects the number of desktops you are using and sizes itself to fit!
- Fonts and colours are customizable all from one configuration file.
I am aware of the following bugs, and will work to fix them soon, don't worry :)
1. If the title of an application changes, the TaskPanel will not update it until another task-related change occurs.
2. The Config GUI preview will not update when you change the size of a panel -- you must apply your changes, close the GUI, and start it again for width-related changes to affect the panels in the preview
4. There are no icons for grouped tasks if you don't have the addMenuTaskItem superkaramba patch installed. This isn't really a bug, but an FIY :).
1. Shows the default configuration with the config GUI alongside
2. Shows use of grouped tasks
3. Shows another configuration I threw together, also demonstrates having a different number of desktops. As well, it shows the configuration panel open.
I welcome people to try their hand at writing SlickBar Panels, however I would suggest waiting for version 1.0 to be released. Version 1.0 will be (or is, if you consider the unstable version on my computer) based on Skoot, and therefore has a number of API changes. There will be complete SlickBar API documentation for version 1.0, along with a useful tutorial.
If you create a nice Panel that could be useful to lots of people, I'd be glad to distribute it with SlickBar (with your permission, of course).
SlickBar requires SuperKaramba 0.33, the Python XML libraries, and Tkinter (Tcl/Tk) for the config GUI. Most people probably have the python libs already, most python installations should have them.
The XMMSPanel requires the PyXMMS module. It is available here: http://www.via.ecp.fr/~flo/. Don't worry if you don't have it and you intend to use the NoatunPanel.
NoatunPanel (but not NoatunPanelSlow) requires the PyKDE module. You can get it here: http://www.riverbankcomputing.co.uk/pykde/. Alternatively, you can use NoatunPanelSlow, but the "Slow" means REALLY REALLY SLOW. You have been warned.
QuickLaunchPanel, TaskPanel, and PagerPanel also require PyKDE.
The TODO is now much larger and more extensive. It has moved to the SlickBar website, here:
- Jan 08 2004 - 0.9.2
* added a "Hide Kicker" option which will automatically hide the kicker
main panel when SlickBar starts, and re-show kicker when SlickBar
closes. Note that this does NOT disable dcop access to kicker funtions.
* Auto-resizing of the Systray now works better (should not obscure
other panels as much). The Systray will now also move properly if you
move/resize the SystrayPanel without restarting SlickBar. I think there
might still be a subtle bug in the auto-resizing, but I haven't had a
chance to track it down yet.
* Added a tooltip to the K-menu that makes the existence of the config
menu a little more obvious.
* fixed a minor bug introduced in the handling of my TkToggle ("on/off")
widgets and boolean config options in Python 2.3.
* fixed a crash caused by listening to streaming media in XMMS while
using XMMSPanel (thanks to Chu Chu for the fix).
* "Sans" is now the default font for most text instead of "Verdana".
(Hopefully this better-reflects most people's font settings).
- Oct 19 2003 - 0.9.1
* SlickBar should now be able to detect when a previously opened config
GUI has closed abnormally, and will not prevent you from opening
another GUI in this case.
* The TaskPanel now includes an option to disable task grouping.
* QuickLaunchPanel now uses a home-grown kdesktop file parser because
PyKDE's was causing some weird bugs in SuperKaramba. (Note that it
still requires PyKDE for icon discovery)
* SlickBar now includes a mechanism that allows panels to trigger a
reloading of all the panels. This is a quick-n-dirty, *temporary*
solution that will allow panels to resize on-the-fly. A much better
inline resizing solution has already been implemented in the SlickBar
1.0 development code, but unfortunately it isn't in a state to be
released yet :(.
* first version of (buggy) auto-resize code implemented in SysTrayPanel.
This won't work well until superkaramba introduces a way to resize
* The PagerPanel now automatically resizes when the number of virtual
* The PagerPanel display routines have been reorganized to make it more
* The TaskBar now uses createTaskIcon() and addMenuTaskItem() to handle
task icons, thus making them much more accurate (and has also improved
the general responsiveness of the taskbar). Task icons for grouped tasks
are only available if you have applied the addMenuTaskItem superkaramba
* The TaskBar now provides a visual indication of which window is
currently in focus. I am not sure I like how it looks at the moment,
I will think about it more (and hopefully get some feedback from
users..... hint hint :) ), so it might change.
* SlickBar now handles errors/exceptions in panels' updating routines
gracefully -- panels that do not have errors are still able to update
despite other panels having problems.
* SlickBar now handles exceptions in panel display() routines much
more gracefully (ie, all other panels are still displayed; as well,
the offending panel is not allowed to update() anymore)
* All output is now saved in a logfile (slickbar.log) for easy access
(This should help with troubleshooting errors)
* A dialog now pops up to inform you if any of the panels failed to load
successfully. This should help people who aren't running from a
terminal and therefore can't see the error messages right away.
* Minor font tweaks due to the new SuperKaramba pixel-based font sizing.
* All code using KWinModule that can instead use KWin now uses Kwin.
The rest of the changelog (back to v0.2) is available here: http://www.unrandom.com/Projects/slickbar-changelog.php