27 Jul 2007 Nafai77   » (Journeyer)

Quick pop-up of Tomboy notes

I've started using Tomboy to keep track of my tasks lists, to keep random notes, whatever. I've found it to be very useful.

I am always seeking to be more productive and find ways to reduce the amount of distraction in my life. One example: if I am in the middle of working on a project and remember I have to pick something up on my way home from work, I want to quickly jot that down so I don't forget. But I don't want to interrupt the concentration that I have on the task at hand. Tomboy is an ideal solution for this. I am trying to implement a GTD-like system, so I have a Tomboy note titled "GTD Inbox". The idea is to put all of those things that need to be processed and remembered in my "GTD Inbox" to be dealt with later.

Normally, to get to do this, I would have to click on the Tomboy icon in the notification area and select the note title. Alternately, I would hit Alt-F12 to pop up the same menu and move down with the arrow keys and hit Enter. If I am trying to minimize the interruption of the original task, that's too much. I'd rather rely on "muscle memory" -- something that is as natural as pressing Alt-Tab to switch between windows.

With the help of Alex Gravely (thanks Alex!), I was able to come up with a popup_note.sh that uses dbus-send to open up a specified note. With that, I could set a hotkey in Metacity for each of the important notes. For example, at work Windows-i opens "GTD Inbox", Windows-n opens "Next Actions" (my list of next actions for all of my projects, GTD-style), and Windows-t opens "Today" (my list of goals and tasks for the day).

So, back to my "remember to pick up the milk" example. All I'd do is hit Windows-i, type "Pick up Milk", and hit Escape. The Note goes away and I'm back at doing whatever I was doing previously. Wonderful.

To use the script, just pass the title of the note on the commandline, like so:

   $ popup_note.sh GTD Inbox

If you want to set up global hotkeys in Metacity, do this:

   $ gconftool-2 -t string -s /apps/metacity/global_keybindings/run_command_1 "<Mod4>i"
 $ gconftool-2 -t string -s /apps/metacity/keybinding_commands/command_1 "popup_note.sh GTD Inbox"

Download popup_note.sh.

This and other scripts will be linked from my Random Code page. Hopefully something there will be useful.

Syndicated 2007-07-27 00:46:00 from Travis B. Hartwell / Software Craftsman

Latest blog entries     Older blog entries

New Advogato Features

New HTML Parser: The long-awaited libxml2 based HTML parser code is live. It needs further work but already handles most markup better than the original parser.

Keep up with the latest Advogato features by reading the Advogato status blog.

If you're a C programmer with some spare time, take a look at the mod_virgule project page and help us with one of the tasks on the ToDo list!