Font smoothing in OpenSUSE 11.2

I have switched to OpenSUSE 11.2 recently. Although, I’ve enabled anti-aliasing option from System Settings panel, I notice that fonts aren’t displayed smoothly and they are ugly.Two days ago, I found the solution for this problem. It is easy just upgrade the freetype2 packages to use subpixel hinting feature. The subpixel hinting implementation in freetype2 is disabled both upstream (by the freetype2 authors) and in the freetype2 RPM packages that ship with openSUSE because it might infringe Microsoft’s ClearType patents.

Now go to Configure Desktop > Appearance > Fonts
*  enable the checkbox „Use anti-aliasing for fonts“
* click on the „Configure“ button next to the above mentioned checkbox

After log out and log in again, you will notice that KDE will display fonts smoothly. Unfortunately, GTK Application like Firefox will still display fonts ugly. Follow this steps to enable subpixel rendering for GTK apps in KDE:
1- Upgrade cairo package by install this version.
2- Open Kwrite in Super user mode by press alt+f2 and type: kdesu kwrite then enter, will ask you for root password.
3-copy the following contents :-

<?xml version=“1.0″?>
<!DOCTYPE fontconfig SYSTEM „fonts.dtd“>
<!– Enable freetype’s new subpixel filter. Currently, only a cairo
version containing the patches from freedesktop #10301 respects this
setting. –>
<match target=“font“>
<edit mode=“assign“ name=“lcdfilter“>

then save the file as 10-lcd-filter.conf in /etc/fonts/conf.avail.
4. Create a file ~/.Xresources in your /home directory and paste the following contents:-

Xft.lcdfilter: lcddefault

5. Log out and login again.

That’s all and if you feel I have missed some important tips regarding this topic, please share them with us!!

TinyOgg: convert Youtube videos to Ogg

Sometimes many of us have problems with the Flash player. It just doesn’t work. TinyOgg is the solution for this problem specially if you are using Firefox, Chrome, or Opera.

TinyOgg is a service designed to get rid of Flash-based videos by converting them to the free Ogg format. It is not the only service to accomplish this, but it exists to replace some existing services that are built upon non-free, non-published source code.
Technical Details :
TinyOgg service is built entirely on top of several  Free Software projects including:

  • Python, the programming language in which TinyOgg was written.
  • Django, an excellent framework that makes developing web applications (such as this one) so much easier.
  • FFmpeg and ffmpeg2theora, the former is a powerful program that converts videos to Theora and Vorbis; the later is an excellent, easy-to-use interface to the former.
  • URip and WatchVideo, two programs used to download and convert YouTube videos locally, they inspired the idea for creating this service in the first place.
  • Free CSS Templates, a website that provides free (as in cost and as in speech) templates. I use their „Fruits“ template.

By this time, TinyOgg supports YouTube. It will support many video-sharing websites in the near future. It is designed in a way that supports adding new websites easily.
TinyOgg is released under Affero GNU General Public License and you can get it from this page.

Silicon – auto image mounter for KDE 4

Perhaps you know how mount ISO image by commend line. However, If you are lazy – like me – to use Konsole, Silicon is a good choice for this task. I tried Furius ISO before, but I don’t like it because it lacks KDE4’s integration.

Silicon is an auto image manager and mounter (Iso, Squashfs and … files) that work under GNU/Linux. It is released under GPL License.

Silicon has many features like:
– Automatic Mount : Silicon can autofind a mountpoint for your images and mount there.
– Manual Mount : If you don’t like AutoMount, you can use manual mount or single mount in environment to mount your files manually .
– Easy Mount : just you should click on your iso files to mount and re-click to unmount.
– Manager GUI : You can manage your mounted images from Silicon Manager GUI. Thumbnail plugin 1.0 released

The new version 1.0 from Thumbnail plugin has been released. Thumbnail plugin is a plugin for KDE file managers (Dolphin and Konqueror) to preview files (OpenDocument Format) as Thumbnails. You do not need to install for it to work (it only uses KDE API).

I think a lot of people are looking for this thumbnailer. This thumbnailer will help you to get a quick  glance at your’s OpenDocument files.

You can get this thumbnailer by clicking on this link for openSSE 11.2. The other distributions from here.

After you install this thumbnailer, you need to activate it from dolphin: Settings->Configure Dolphin…-> General -> Previews

A sneak preview of new OpenOffice 3.2 part 2

In the First part of the OpenOffice preview, I talked about the new general features in 3.2 like being: easier, more secure, and more international. In this second part, I will explore with you the new features of Chart, Calc and Base (applications within Oo package).

BTW many readers of the previous preview had queries about using grammar checker in OpenOffice. So, I am happy to say that you can use it now by LanguageTools’s extension. Visit their official website and there you can get more information of how to use it.

Chart’s new features

Filled Net Chart:

A new chart type in 3.2 is the Filled Net Chart. It is similar to the regular Net Chart with lines, but in addition to that, the area between the lines and the origin is filled.

Bubble Charts:

“The Bubble Chart is available as new chart type now. Bubble Charts are similar to the XY Charts, but in addition to the x-and y-value for each data point a third value is used to influence the size of the bubble.

This issue was one of the top voted feature request recently within the chart with something around 50 votes.”

Display of hidden cells:

Did you ever have a spreadsheet where some columns or rows are hidden? Now, you can decide whether those values from hidden cells should be included into a plot within a chart or not. Just set the check box in the properties dialog of the data series.

Rotate Data Labels:

The options for data labels have been extended further. It is possible now to rotate them. This is useful especially for column charts to avoid overlapping between the different labels.

Chart Element Selector:

This is a new feature to make working with the chart easier. You can now choose any chart’s element and manipulate its formatting by Chart Element Selector.


Calc’s new features:

Calc gained many new features and enhancements. This page lists all new features in Calc 3.2 but I will talk about three of them here:

Applying cell borders to multiple selection:

Some of you know that you can make more than one selection at the same time within Calc. The new feature makes possible to apply cell borders to multiple selections. Previously it was only possible to apply cell borders to a single rectangular cell range. Now borders can be applied to any selection of cells.

Double click on document position in status bar opens Navigator:

A double click on the „document position“ control in the Calc status bar now opens the Navigator, like in Writer.

AutoFill for cells with numbers at the start and end:

It is possible now to make a list of IP addresses to by using AutoFill features. The new feature makes AutoFill understanding that you want to increment the number at the end if you start with numbers like this: 11wer24 or IP address.

Base 3.2 new features:

Base is not an attractive application to many people and even myself I don’t remember when was the last time I had to use it. Anyway, Base has new features in the next version that will make some of you happy to try it.

Copy Table Wizard: „First line as column names“:

The Copy table Wizard now contains an additional check box which is enabled when RTF or HTML format is copied into a database. The check box is labeled: „Use first line as column names“ ;

When checked, the first row is used to identify column names, when not checked, the first row will be handled as a normal data row.

Copying queries between database documents uses source name:

When you copy queries between database documents, you’re not prompted for the target name anymore, unless it is really necessary.

That is, if you copy „some query“ from database A to database B, then it will be inserted into B as „some query“. Previously (up to 3.1), you were prompted for a name, which was defaulted to „Query1“, completely ignoring the source name.

Only if the name already exists in the target database (in particular, if you copy a query into the same DB), the dialog is opened, and now pre-filled with the source name instead of „Query1“.

Forms can be zoomed:

Database forms can now be zoomed, much like all other OOo documents. You’ll find the usual View/Zoom menu item, and the zoom slider in the status bar. (Ctrl+Scroll wheel continues to work, as it already did before.)

Property browser: Added Position, Size, and Anchor :

In the property browser for form controls, you can now also change the position and size of the control, as well as its anchor (in document types where anchoring is supported, e.g. text docs and spreadsheets).

This is especially useful when you want to modify the geometry of multiple controls at once, which previously required invocation of a modal dialog for every control, and now can be done by selecting all controls, and simply entering the new value(s) in the property browser.

Property browser: Human-readable event bindings:

The event bindings in the form/control property browser are now somewhat more human readable, in that a binding formerly displayed as:

Now is displayed as:

Standard.Module1.Main (application, Basic)

Property browser: Button controls: new „Default Status“ property, applicable to toggle buttons:

Button controls in documents now have an additional property „Default status“. It is enabled if and only if the button’s „Toggle“ property is set to „Yes“, and works like the „Default status“ property for e.g. check box controls: It controls in which status the button will be when resetting the form to which the button belongs.

Finally, the release date for OOo 3.2 is expected to be on 14 December 2009. You can download the Development version from here. Remember, it is not the final version, so it might have some bugs. Help developers to kill them by reporting about them in’s bugs system. Any comment is more than welcome.

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