Posts Tagged ‘Art’

Compose for typography

Tuesday, February 19th, 2008

Often, us artist-types need advanced typography when making artwork, laying out text, and fun things like that. How do you usually do it? For me, it’s either been launching a stupidly hard to find (and annoying to use) character picker or searching for some character on the Internet and copy/pasting it in. (Once in a while, I’ll make a really simple HTML page which has contains not much more than » or — or © — then open it up in Firefox and copy the resulting character).

Well, friends, there’s a better way! In discovering the compose key (thanks to many awesome volunteers) a couple weeks ago, I’ve been happily typing not just German characters, but some advanced typographical ones, too! It’s great for applications like Inkscape, which ordinarily seems to lack support for typing these sorts of things.

A quick primer (hit the compose key, then…):

  • or = ®
  • oc = ©
  • < < = «
  • TM (shift-tm) = ™
  • - - - = —
  • 12 = ½
  • ^2 = ²
  • c= = €
  • c/ = ¢
  • Y= = ¥
  • xx = ×
  • ?? = ¿
  • !! = ¡
  • <” = “
  • >” = ”
  • <´ = ‘
  • >´ = ’
  • -: = ÷
  • .< = ‹
  • .> = ›

These are just a few. In general, think of what the symbol looks like when combined with something else, and that’s probably what you need to type, after hitting the compose key.

To set this up in GNOME, open up keyboard preferences and go to the “layout options” tab and select “compose key position”. (I have mine set up for the “menu key”.)

(Update: Remapping keys in GNOME 3.2+ has since been moved to System SettingsRegion and LanguageLayoutsOptions…Compose key position → [select the key(s) you want for compose key])

(Update 2: Remapping keys in GNOME 3.6+ has since been moved to System SettingsKeyboardShortcutsTypingCompose key → [click and hold, and select the key you want for compose key from the dropdown])

In KDE, go to the keyboard layout in the KDE control center, click on the “Xkb options” tab, enable the “Enable Xkb options” option, then scroll through the list until you see the second “Compose Key Position” (the one with options under it in the tree). Enable it and the the key you wish to use.

For vanilla X, you can edit Xorg.conf and follow a mini-howto.

Anyway, when you use the compose key, you can instantly start typing various characters all over the place… not just in Inkscape (where it’s quite useful), but in Firefox, XChat, in IM conversations, etc.

Tablet fever; drawing on computer screens

Saturday, February 9th, 2008

Jakub just got a HUGE Wacom Cintiq tablet… and he has instructions on how to set it up for Linux (well, and the Mac too, but that’s just a sentence)!

It was just a few days ago when I rushed over to Sigi’s office to see his new baby Cintiq — and I must admit, it is quite dreamy, as far as tablets go.

Jakub’s new Cintiq is humongous, however… (judging from the pictures).

I suppose I should get my shiny newish Lenovo X61 laptop working with proper tablet support before dreaming of other tablety gadgets, though. (It 1/2 way works now — just need proper pressure support and cursor rotation + screen rotation working… getting something to work fully is the trick.)

The X61 might not have the resolution or as many levels of the Cintiq, but I can lug it around with me and use it on airplanes (if there’s enough room, turbulence-free air, and suitable battery life left).

I’m looking forward to seeing what Jakub and Sigi sketch up in the upcoming days (and should probably sketch some stuff myself too).

A few more recently posted pictures on Flickr

Thursday, July 5th, 2007
Click on each picture to see a larger version.






I still have lots more to post from my recent travels, too. (:

Be sure to check out even more photos on my flickr page.

Planet Hula theme

Tuesday, April 24th, 2007

For anyone interested in the Planet Hula space theme I made a while back, you can grab a tarball of the version of Planet we used which also contains the theme.

I have also made a quick example page too, in case you’d like to remember what it looks like.

Planet Hula thumbnail

Notes: You can use this under the same license as Planet itself, provided you do not use the Hula logo itself nor the Hula name (both are included within, so you’ll need to do some very minor tweaks at the very least). Also, I think I did make a couple of tweaks since this version to make it play a little better on Internet Explorer. Consider this a beta release.

It takes YOU to Tango!

Thursday, November 3rd, 2005

This Friday (and every Friday to come) is Tango Friday!

Tango!

The Tango Project “exists to create a consistent user experience for free and Open Source software with graphical user interfaces.” We’re approaching this goal by having a consistant naming spec which can be used anywhere, by any application, on any desktop. Secondly, we are working on providing a default set of icons to fill this need.

For the Tango icons, we have a style guide in place and a lot of icons already.

Even if you want to use other icons, it benefits to have them ported to the icon naming spec which the Tango project has provided. By abiding by that spec, it will make an icon theme work across multiple desktops with minimal effort.

Now you might be asking yourself: What is Tango Friday? Basically, it’s like a hackfest, except with art. Tango Friday is simply a time to join #tango on irc.freenode.net (via IRC) and use your favorite graphic editor (most people use Inkscape) to make really cool Tango-style SVG and PNG icons!

It’s open to everyone interested. You actually don’t even have to be good with graphics. We need people of all sorts, including: developers, documentation experts, fanboys, and all those just plainly interested in what we’re doing. We want people from all parts of the community, from different companies, different desktops, and different operating systems even.

We need people to help us make the stock set of Tango icons, but we also want others to help it get implemented in Xfce, KDE, GNOME, Wine, Java apps, Web software, or anywhere else it may make sense.

We had an unannounced, spontaneous Tango Friday last week, and not only was it was tons of fun, it was quite productive as well.

Make sure to join us this Friday. See you there!

MiniGate

Tuesday, September 27th, 2005

Floating Island” is basically a minature recreation (with live trees and grass) of Central Park, but on a garbage scow, currently being tugged around New York’s harbor.

As the captian of the tugboat was dragging around the minipark, he noticed a speedboat carrying a miniature version of a bright orange minigate!

According to the New York Times article (previous link), the anonymous art “pirates” hauling the minigate thought that they thought the ‘Gates’ project “was stupid” and that they wanted to make a joke about it and this new Central Park based public art piece.

Hilarious!

Pushing “Paint” to the limits…

Wednesday, May 18th, 2005

It’s amazing — someone used Microsoft Paint to recreate a scene of Venice.

That has to be the most astounding use of MS Paint, ever. (Previous titleholder: Pokey the Penguin.)