28 Aug 2004 TheMuso   » (Observer)

Accessibility is the word.

Spent some time this afternoon playing around with Sylpheed-gtk2. I am interested in this email client as since it uses GTK2, Gnopernicus can theoretically work with it. Well as I found out, not quite yet.

It is good to see that the developer of Sylpheed-gtk2 is keeping pace with normal Sylpheed development. Had this not been the case, I would have very likely not worried about the GTK2 port, but since they are in sync, except for the GTK differences, it provides a real alternative to Balsa, which depends on GNOME, and for some reason, crashes on my Slackware installation, and has done so on several other installations as well.

There seem to be two problems that I have identified with Sylpheed-gtk2. Firstly, the mailbox list does not get read by Gnopernicus. This is Probably a matter of implementing some ATK calls due to some different widgets being used. It seems that the email list is being read, but this is still not clear.

The second problem was the fact that one could not use the arrow keys to move around in the message viewing window to read the text. I could see the cursor blinking at the top of the text view area. I could also re-position the cursor with the mouse, but the arrow keys did not respond. A dive into the Sylpheed-gtk2 source firstly found the appropriate C file, and then the appropriate function that handles keypress events.

After commenting out code that prevented the arrow keys from being used, and after changing one line of code to a line of code that I found in the equivelant Balsa source file, I re-compiled Sylpheed, and fired it up. Sure enough, the arrow keys moved around, and I could select text, as well as other shortcuts for navigating text fields.

I think I will make a preferences option for this, so the user can set the behavior they want. I am actually quite stoked with this find, as I am not a coder as such, but I understand enough C to get by.


Attended the SLUG monthly meeting last night, which turned out to have some very good info on security. You can find a rundown of what was covered on the SLUG webpage linked to above. Accessibility issues were also raised, and I was glad to chime in with my bit. I guess this is what got me interested in trying to get Sylpheed to be more accessible... That and finding out that Sylpheed in fact did have a GTK2 port. :)

There also seems to be a few current and former musos amongst the sluggers. At dinner after the meeting, several of us got talking about synthesis, pitch, and several other topics to do with music. I would really like to have a jam with them one day. We would very likely learn heaps from each other.

Music to my ears.

It seems that a lot of things have happened today, as a direct result of what discussions I was involved in last night. I am not complaining. It makes me feel great about myself, and my abilities.

So I sat down at the piano this morning, and mucked around, as I usually do. I played through several pieces I know well, to see what twist I would put on them this time, as the renditions are often different. Oh the power of chord substitution is incredible. Some of these were popular music such as Billy Joel's New York State of Mind, and a few jazz standards such as take the A train, Green Dolphin Street, and Blue Bosser. I am not into jazz nearly as much as I used to be, but I do enjoy playing these few pieces every so often. Makes me feel great.


I haven't really done much in the way of the AudioSlack project lately. I do have a couple of pressing issues to deal with though, which I have started working on. First, the fact that the allotted bandwidth per month has been used for two consecutive months. I am seeking mirrors, and have already received an offer. Unfortunately, the owner of the webspace doesn't have the ability to make cron jobs, so I have to keep things in sync from my end. The PHP script is planned, and a little of it is written. Since this is important, I will probably work on it at great length in the next few days.

I also intend to make a set of 2.6 kernels available in testing soon, so that Ingo's Voluntary Preempt patches get more testing. I also need to remove ZynAddSubFX 2.0_pre2 from testing, and make the final release available. I am not the package maintainer, but I will do it anyway, and send the updates onto the actual maintainer.

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