Because of Gnome 2.10's metacity focus stealing prevention feature, I would not notice new messaes in open gaim conversation windows. Since I have an IBM Thinkpad with a Thinklight attached to it (little LED on the top border of the display), I thought I'd use that to tell me about new messages.
Sitting here at the entropia again, I finished my gaim plugin hacking. Since the light is controlled via /proc, I had to write a suid program just to let the user control that file. That's not a nice solution, I wish /proc would be like /dev, where you just use chgrp et al to let the user control the devices. If any one is interested, I have (not very clean) debian packages.
Lightweight Replacement for 111 lines of code
Chris Lamb has announced his gaim plugin “gaim-lightthink” both on his blog and on the thinkpad-linux mailing list. His plugin does basically the same thing as my gaim-thinklight plugin. I was a bit surprised to read that his plugin is supo
Weblog: nomeata's mind shares Tracked: Nov 16, 18:04
Weblog: nomeata's mind shares Tracked: Oct 13, 14:01
gaim-thinklight → pidgin-blinklight
I once wrote a plugin gaim called gaim-thinklight, which simply blinks your ThinkPad’s ThinkLight when you get a new messge. Very recently, gaim was renamed to pidgin, so gaim-thinklight is now called pidgin-blinklight. I changed the second part not bec
Weblog: nomeata’s mind shares Tracked: May 15, 23:05
I thought about the race condition. I might fix it by setting the timer for the turn-off-light from within the turn-on-function.
I am also thinking (nothing more :-)) about making the blink sequence configurational, and have it blink differnetly for different events.
I don't know if you can make it blink while unread messages wait when the messages was actually shown but the window stays hidden (the reason I created the plugin in the first case). I'm not sure gaim knows whether the messages was not read...
Works great, and I'm greatly amused! (It's useful too!)
One suggestion for development would be to be able to configure it to keep the light on until the message window gained focus, was typed in, etc. (like Message Notification plugin), in case you left the room or something and wanted to easily check whether any new messages had been received.
Also, being able to configure other options for how it blinks for different events would be fantastic.
Glad to hear you like it. Keeping the light on is a good idea, but see comment #2.1. The blinking sequence is already saved in a way that should allow easy customation, but someone just needs to hack up an UI.
Not sure if I'll get around to do any of this soon, but patches are welcome.
One other thing I noticed: If the light is already on, it will blink and end in the off state. In case someone was trying to use the light to work, would it be possible to have it blink and return to the state in was in previously? (By toggling its state rather than telling it to turn on and then off, or some such thing?)
This was requested a few times now. If you run debian unstable, you can get version 0.2 with this version with apt-get upgrade. To get the files directly, see http://packages.debian.org/unstable/net/gaim-thinklight
Hi... Im running GAIM 1.1.4 on Ubuntu Hoary. IBM ACPI is installed and running (can turn on light with echo on > /proc/acpi/ibm/light), but when I activate the plugin in GAIM, the program crashes when I receive an IM. Any ideas what might be going on?
Nope, no idea. Can you provide a backtrace? Also, maybe it needs to be rebuilt against the version in Hoary. Did you get your package from ubuntu universe? Then you might want to file a bug in the ubuntu bug tracking system.
Did you ever find a fix for this? I'm having the same issues. Compiled w/ debug mode, reports:
The program 'gaim' received an X Window System error.
This probably reflects a bug in the program.
The error was 'BadGC (invalid GC parameter)'.
(Details: serial 4610 error_code 13 request_code 60 minor_code 0)
(Note to programmers: normally, X errors are reported asynchronously;
that is, you will receive the error a while after causing it.
To debug your program, run it with the --sync command line
option to change this behavior. You can then get a meaningful
backtrace from your debugger if you break on the gdk_x_error() function.)
would it be possible to activate the light only when a message arrives in a window which is out of focus? the idea is simply great, but I get kind of annoyed if it is constantly blinking during a "talk".
that idea makes sense, but I don't know enough about the internals of gaim, and I am currently too lazy to find out. If you or someone how ever can point me to the appropriate docs that tell me how to code that, I can certainly do that.
I was the one who helped him :) The debian experimental did not work on Ubuntu Dapper with unofficial gaim2 packages from
"deb http://people.ubuntu.com/~seb128/deb ./" (unofficial repo from the official ubuntu gaim maintainer). It did not work because the debian gaim is named 2.0 and the ubuntu one 1.99. So I recompiled the gaim-thinklight package from the official repos with gaim-dev 1.99. And now it works :) If you want, I can send you the .deb I made.
Well, excellent plugin I must say, though I second the opinion of fechter that the blink should only occur in out of focus windows. I haven't found a way to do that yet, but I'm looking into it (no idea where to start!).
Secondly, how is this installed on a non-Debian system? I'm sure the source must be extractable somehow, but I'm unfamiliar with .debs.
I added some bits so the current state of the light before the message is left after the 'blink'. I think this is important because I may be using the light and I don't want it turned off when the blink is done.
Sorry, it is not crashing here, so I need your help to get that fixed, if it is a problem with gaim-thinklight at all. I am surprised that it affects the GUI: What kind of GUI problems are that? Does it also happen with gaim-text (if FC6 ships that)? Can you run it in gdb or strace to see when it is crashing? Is it crashing when a new message arrives?
Hi .. nice tool, though it would be cool if there was an option to keep the light on until I read the message .. this would be pretty helpful if you're not always at your laptop and it is therefore locked, so you don't even see the blinking tray-icon