Quicksilver for Linux (& incidental etch upgrade)

by Juliet Kemp

I have a Mac laptop, which I am very fond of; and on it I use Quicksilver which I find inordinately useful (to the point that I have trouble using other people's Macs if they don't have it). There is a project available entitled Gnome Launchbox which claims to be an effort to do a similar thing for Linux, which I've been meaning to experiment with for ages.

First order of business: upgrade to etch, as GLB requires evolution-data-server 1.2. I was expecting this to be a nuisance, & possibly lead to an exciting couple of hours of post-upgrade fixing. However, in fact it all went absolutely smoothly. I am most impressed (not to mention relieved, as I have a whole bunch of machines to upgrade when it finally gets released).

However, gnome-launchbox was still no go; the version of GTK-2.0 required is 2.10, and etch only provides 2.8.20. I'm not sufficiently keen on this exercise to start building from source or hauling in packages from unstable. I tried the 0.1 release (current is 0.2) but that produced weird make errors.

The next possibility was Katapult. Which may or may not be a good piece of software; sadly their webpage times out so I can't find out.

Anyone encountered anything else that has a similar function? I may just switch window managers (I've been recommended xfce) and start setting up lots of keyboard shortcuts...


2007-03-30 04:29:04
I believe the Deskbar Applet (which i think is now part of GNOME 2.18): http://raphael.slinckx.net/deskbar/ may help you, or Beagle (which integrates really well with deskbar actually) or Gimmie: http://beatnik.infogami.com/Gimmie or a combination of all the above may assist.
Michael Schuerig
2007-03-30 05:19:08
Katapult is available as an official package for Debian testing (etch) and unstable. However, I'm convinced that you will be disappointed with its current functionality.
Juliet Kemp
2007-03-30 06:04:41
Michael - thanks. I've just tried it, & you're right, it's really not worth using yet :-/

Nick - thanks also! I'll have a look at those later.

Juliet Kemp
2007-04-03 06:23:23
Just installed the Deskbar Applet & it looks pretty good - thanks for the tip!
jeremiah foster
2007-04-05 10:10:28
I've tried xfce (in Ubuntu) and it is really nice. There is a distro with a live CD with debian testing and enlightenment out there somewhere, I tried that as well and it was pretty good too. Lots of good window managers out there these days, I like fluxbox a lot as well.
2007-12-06 07:00:18
You may already be aware of this project, but Gnome Do [1] is very similar to Launchbox and actually looks a bit more like Quicksilver than Launchbox does (if that's important to anyone).

I don't yet know much about their architecture or extensibility (it's mono-based), but it is easy to install via the authors PPA on Launchpad [2].

I actually wandered her after reading about discussion on Mozilla Labs of adding something like this to Firefox 3 [3]. Wouldn't that be nice. :)

[1] http://do.davebsd.com/
[2] http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?p=3759210
[3] http://labs.mozilla.com/2007/07/the-graphical-keyboard-user-interface/

Juliet Kemp
2007-12-06 12:17:06
Thanks Benjamin - I'll take a look at it.

I do like the Firefox 3 idea :)

2008-07-05 06:13:40
gnome do is what you're after. http://do.davebsd.com/