Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Put On Your Dancing Shoes: Meet the New Cast of DWTS

First Up ... The Women:


Audrina Patridge


Bristol Palin

Florence Henderson

Jennifer Grey

Margaret Cho

And Now ... The Men:


David Hasselhoff

Kurt Warner

Kyle Massey

Michael Bolton

Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino

Rick Fox


Monday, August 30, 2010

2010 Emmy Awards: Glamour Girls

These glamour girls look radiant and ravishing on the red carpet. Eva, Lea, January, and our other famous small-screen stars certainly made a big impression at the 2010 Emmy Awards.


Claire Danes


Lea Michele


January Jones


Jayma Mays


Eva Longoria


Keri Russell


Kyra Sedgwick


Brooke Burke

*Photos Courtesy: Getty Images

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Playing around with MeeGo Touch

While the MeeGo Touch Python Bindings are still not packaged and released, I though I'd give the C++ library a try and have a look through the class hierarchy. After getting the basic "Hello World" app running, I decided to create an application that can load the list of subscriptions from gPodder's SQLite database:

This view uses MContentItem, which already provides an icon and two lines of text - correctly styled and ready to go. Menu and toolbar items are MAction objects that can either appear everywhere or only at specific places (e.g. only in the toolbar). The great thing is that this all works on your Desktop in a normal window, so testing applications on your computer will be much easier with MeeGo Touch than it is with Hildon (which does not really run without its own hildon-desktop session in Xephyr).

The screenshot above is from the prototype written in C++, and shows how a gPodder MeeGo UI could look like. The MeeGo Touch UI of gPodder will be implemented in Python once the bindings are ready - the framework seems to be fun to work with so far. If you would like to play around with it yourself: MeeGo Touch is available from the MeeGo PPA of Ville M. Vainio if you are on Ubuntu and don't want to build it yourself.

gPodder 2.8 for Maemo 5: Notifications and MAFW integration

It's been some time since the last gPodder release, and I've been busy adding some nifty features to make the best use of the on-board facilities of Maemo 5. As already mentioned in a previous post, this new version comes with built-in notification support. After installation, you might have to re-start hildon-home (or your device) for the changes to become effective. That's what you will get when new episodes are found:

The other and more "invisible" change is that gPodder now listens to MAFW and also talks to it at times. MAFW is the backend of the Media Player application, and you profit in two ways from this integration:

  • The last playback position and duration of an episode are displayed in gPodder and synchronized to gpodder.net
  • Playback can be resumed even with the Media Player application

This means that users of the normal Media Player application will benefit from all the goodies that were previously only available in combination with Panucci. Combined with the new notifications, this makes for yet another great release with even better integration into the Maemo 5 environment.

gPodder 2.8 is now available from Extras-Testing, so please test, review and vote on the package.

Monday, August 23, 2010

The Box-Office Beat: The Expendables Takes the Top Spot

Stallone and his brawny pals brought in the big bucks this weekend at the box office. See what other movies made lots of money ...


1 - The Expendables: $16.5 M

2 - Vampires Suck: $12.2 M

3 - Eat Pray Love: $12 M

4 - Lottery Ticket: $11.1 M

5 - The Ohter Guys: $10.1 M

6 - Piranha 3D: $10 M

7 - Nanny McPhee Returns: $8.3 M

8 - The Switch: $8.1 M

9 - Inception: $7.7 M

10 - Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: $5 M

Friday, August 20, 2010

gPodder running in the MeeGo Handset UX for N900

Three days ago, a new MeeGo Handset UX image has been released for the N900. I wanted to try out gPodder on it to see how far I could come without any coding...

It was quite easy to get things going: Download the image, dd it to a MicroSD card, boot the kernel (detailed instructions) and set up USB networking. After that, I could ssh into the environment (the root password is meego) and have a look around.

Instead of using apt-cache and apt-get to search for and install packages, I utilized yum to search for and install PyGTK. Then, I used rsync to copy my Git checkout of gPodder to the device. There are two additional dependencies for gPodder that aren't yet available in the MeeGo repositories, namely feedparser and mygpoclient, so I just copied the Python modules from my Laptop into the src/ folder of the gPodder checkout. Then, just switch to the MeeGo user (su - meego), make sure that the DISPLAY variable is set (export DISPLAY=:0) and start gPodder from the source folder (with bin/gpodder - it automatically loads the modules from the right path) - gPodder says hello MeeGo.

The basic functions work, it's just that the Desktop UI isn't suited for mobile devices (the MeeGo compositor/decorator also has several problems, but that seems to be a more general problem). Python bindings for Hildon aren't (yet ?) available, so I could not test the Maemo 4 or Maemo 5 UIs, but I would like to do a proper Qt/MeeGo Touch-based UI for gPodder, anyway. Let's hope the PyMaemo or PySide teams are quick to release bindings and make them available in the MeeGo repositories, so Python developers can create usable UIs for MeeGo handsets :) Oh, and two MeeGo-Python facts: It comes pre-installed in the N900 image, and the version shipped is 2.6.

In short: Apart from the UI framework, everything is already in place (and working) for Python on MeeGo. With the recent release of Qt Mobility for PySide, let's hope that MeeGo Touch bindings are not that far away.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Desktop notification support in gPodder

Three days ago, Maemo bug 11130 was filed: It complains about gPodder stealing focus when it has finished checking for new episodes in the background. This is true, and I've been bitten by this annoyance several times already, so I decided to finally have a look into the SMS/IM/Phone-style notifications (the "yellow" bubble that merges into your task switcher after some time). Thankfully, Daniel Would (of Witter fame) has published his research results some months ago already, so getting up and running was easy from that point. Here are the results so far:

One problem that I still have not figured out how to fix (even after digging in the hildon-home source tree) is how to attach such a notification to the a given window (or application) instead of having it appear as separate "window" in the task switcher (see the second screenshot). Can somebody in the know give me a hint? On the other hand, the callback for clicking on the notification works fine already and opens the new episodes dialog.

A related change that also prevents gPodder from stealing focus was to replace the progress indicator dialog with a HildonBanner - it might not look so good without a progress bar, but it makes gPodder less intrusive when the user interacts with other applications.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Help

I just finished reading The Help, and I absolutely devoured it... What an amazing book! So I'm psyched that The Help is coming to the silver screen! I can only hope the film is as incredible as the novel.


Set in Mississippi during the 1960s, The Help stars Emma Stone (star of the breakout hit, Zombieland) as Skeeter, a southern society girl who returns from college determined to become a writer, but turns her friends’ lives—and a small Mississippi town—upside down when she decides to interview the black women who have spent their lives taking care of prominent southern families. Academy Award nominee Viola Davis (Eat Pray Love) stars as Aibileen, Skeeter’s best friend’s housekeeper, who is the first to open up—to the dismay of her friends in the tight-knit black community. Despite Skeeter’s life-long friendships hanging in the balance, she and Aibileen continue their collaboration and soon more women come forward to tell their stories—and as it turns out, they have a lot to say. Along the way, unlikely friendships are forged and a new sisterhood emerges, but not before everyone in town has a thing or two to say themselves when they become unwittingly—and unwillingly—caught up in the changing times.

Based on one of the most talked about books in years and a #1 New York Times best-selling novel, The Help is a provocative and inspiring look at what happens when a southern town’s unspoken code of rules and behavior is shattered by three courageous women who strike up an unlikely friendship.

The Help is currently in production and is slated for release in 2011.

*Getty Images

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Box-Office Beat: The Other Guys on Top

Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg managed to take the top spot about way from Leonardo di Caprio. See what movies made the big bucks. Glam's got the box-office beat.


1 - The Other Guys: $35.6 M

2 - Inception: $18.6 M

3 - Step Up in 3D: $15.5 M

4 - Salt: $11.1 M

5 - Dinner for Schmucks: $10.5 M

6 - Despicable Me: $9.4 M

7 - Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore: $6.9 M

8 - Charlie St. Cloud: $4.7 M

9 - Toy Story 3: $3 M

10 - The Kids Are All Right: $2.6 M

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Poster for TANGLED


Walt Disney Pictures presents Tangled, one of the most hilarious, hair-raising tales ever told.  When the kingdom’s most wanted—and most charming—bandit Flynn Rider (voice of Zachary Levi) hides out in a mysterious tower, he’s taken hostage by Rapunzel (voice of Mandy Moore), a beautiful and feisty tower-bound teen with 70 feet of magical, golden hair.  Flynn’s curious captor, who’s looking for her ticket out of the tower where she’s been locked away for years, strikes a deal with the handsome thief and the unlikely duo sets off on an action-packed escapade, complete with a super-cop horse, an over-protective chameleon and a gruff gang of pub thugs. In theaters this holiday season in  3D, Tangled is a story of adventure, heart, humor and hair—lots of hair.

Tangled comes to theaters on Nov. 24, 2010.