Oct 26, 2016

NoNotifications Indicator 0.9 Released With New Features

NoNotifications is an Ubuntu indicator for temporarily suppressing NotifyOSD (which is used by Unity) notifications. This can be useful for presentations, when working, and so on, to prevent unwanted notifications.

NoNotifications Indicator

The indicator was completely rewritten recently, bringing some new features.

With the new version, there's an option that allows you to only suppress notifications containing specific stings, useful to quickly disable notifications from certain sources. As an example, you could block new message notifications in Pidgin for some specific contacts, while allowing the rest.

Another new feature in the latest NoNotifications is an option to store the notifications missed while the "Don't disturb" mode was enabled. These notifications are stored in ~/.config/nonotifs_prefs/notificationlogs .

The missed notifications feature still needs some work, because right now it stores some extra information that's not useful for the user, like the application icon name, and more. In future releases, missed notifications should be available in the GUI.

Other changes in the latest NoNotifications 0.9.x:
  • option to suppress the sound along with the notifications (this is considered experimental for now);
  • option to always show notifications on statup;
  • option to run NoNotifications on startup;
  • the app now remembers the last state (suppressing or not);
  • various smaller improvements.

Install NoNotifications (NoNotifs) in Ubuntu

NoNotifications indicator is available in a PPA. To add the PPA and install the indicator in Ubuntu, use the following commands:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:vlijm/nonotifs
sudo apt update
sudo apt install nonotifs

Report any bugs you may find @ Launchpad.

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Install Streamlink (Livestreamer Fork) In Ubuntu Or Linux Mint Via PPA

It looks like Livestreamer is no longer maintained, so a fork, called Streamlink, was created recently. There are no Ubuntu packages for the new fork, so I uploaded Streamlink to the main WebUpd8 PPA.

The PPA uses the Livestreamer Debian packaging, renamed for Streamlink, so the packaging credits go to Stefan Breunig, the Livestreamer Debian maintainer.


In case you're not familiar with Livestreamer, this is a command line utility (and API is also available) that pipes video streams from services such as Livestream, Twitch, UStream, Youtube Live and more, to video players like VLC, mpv, and so on.

The Livestreamer developer hasn't committed any changes or responded to issues in some time, so it seems the project has been abandoned.

Due to changes in various video streaming services, some Livestreamer plugins no longer work properly - for instance, the Livestreamer Twitch GUI developer had to implement some workarounds to get Twitch to work (by the way, he also added initial support for Streamlink).

Streamlink fixes quite a few issues (for twitch, picarto, itvplayer, crunchyroll, periscope, and douyutv, among others) present in Livestreamer, while also adding plugins for new streaming services. Check out its changelog for more information.

Install Streamlink in Ubuntu or Linux Mint via PPA

To install Streamlink in Ubuntu or Linux Mint by using the main WebUpd8 PPA, use the following commands:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nilarimogard/webupd8
sudo apt update
sudo apt install streamlink
If you don't want to add the PPA, you can download the deb from HERE (you'll need both streamlink and python-streamlink).

Streamlink is available in AUR for Arch Linux users.

To download the source, report bugs, etc., see the Streamlink GitHub page.

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Oct 25, 2016

How to Embed Images from Google Photos into your Website

Google Photos is the best service for backing up your digital photos to the cloud. They have no storage restrictions, your can upload images as well as videos, and visual search helps you find photos by people or things in them. There’s one feature though that’s still missing in Google Photos.

You can easily share your photos with anyone using a simple link but Google Photos offers no option for you to embed an existing image into a website. That is, if you have already uploaded an image onto Google Photos, you can’t directly embed it into your website through Google Photos.

Google Photos as an Image Host

Embed Google Photos is a new web app that, as the name suggests, makes it extremely easy for you to pick any image hosted on Google Photos and place it on a web page using simple HTML code.

Here’re the steps involved:

  • Go to photos.google.com and open any image that you wish to embed in your website.
  • Tap the Share Icon (video tutorial) and then choose Get Link to generate a shareable link for that image.
  • Go to http://j.mp/EmbedGooglePhotos, paste that link and it will instantly generate the embed code for that picture.

Open your website template, paste the generated code and save (see sample). The image will now serve directly from your Google Photos account. This technique can also be used for embedding images in HTML Mail without having to use an external image hosting service.

Embed Google Photos

Embed Google Photos – How it works?

When you share a single photo via a link inside Google Photos, it creates an unlisted link that is accessible to anyone including those who are not logged into their Google Accounts. Internally, the app downloads the page behind this link and extracts the Open Graph tags to determine the direct link of the image and the underlying photo album.

Also see: Google Photos – The Good Parts

The embed app only works for single images and not albums. One more thing. I am not aware of any bandwidth limitations for images shared via Google Photos. If have a very popular site, this may not be the way to go.


The story, How to Embed Images from Google Photos into your Website, was originally published at Digital Inspiration by Amit Agarwal on 25/10/2016 under Embed, Image, Internet.

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SafeEyes Protects You From Eye Strain When Working On The Computer

SafeEyes is an application that tries to protect your eyes from eye strain (asthenopia) by reminding you to take breaks while you're working long hours at the computer. It was created as a free and open source Linux alternative for EyeLeo, a Windows-only app.


SafeEyes is an AppIndicator / tray app, and from its menu you can enable or disable it and access its settings.

Besides reminding you to take brakes regularly, SafeEyes also provides simple exercises:



The brakes can include a skip button, or can be set to be strict, removing "skip" button and thus, forcing you to take a break.

The application includes both short and long breaks, each with configurable duration. You can also configure the interval between breaks and the time to prepare for break - when a break is about to start, a notification is displayed.

Furthermore, rhe skip button text can be changed by editing the ~/.config/safeeyes/safeeyes.json file, while the break screen can be modified by editing the ~/.config/safeeyes/style/safeeyes_style.css file. These files are created after running SafeEyes once. 

SafeEyes features:
  • short breaks with eye exercises;
  • long breaks to change physical position and to warm up;
  • optional stict break that removes the skip button;
  • highly customizable
  • do not disturb when working with fullscreen applications (e.g. watching movies);
  • disable the keyboard during break;
  • notifications before every break;
  • multi-workspace support.

Install SafeEyes in Ubuntu or Linux Mint

Note: the SafeEyes PPA provides packages for Ubuntu 16.10, however, the application didn't work in my test under Yakkety - but reported HERE.

SafeEyes can be installed in Ubuntu 16.04 or 14.04 / Linux Mint 18 or 17.x, by using its official PPA. To add the PPA and install the application, use the following commands:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:slgobinath/safeeyes
sudo apt update
sudo apt install safeeyes
Alternatively, if you don't want to add the PPA, you can download the deb from HERE.

Arch Linux users can install SafeEyes via AUR.

The application is automatically added to startup after you start it once from the menu / Dash.

To download the source code, report bugs, etc., see the SafeEyes GitHub page.

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Oct 21, 2016

Desktop Gmail Client `WMail` 2.0.0 Stable Released

WMail is a free, open source desktop client for Gmail and Google Inbox, available for Linux, Windows, and Mac.

WMail Gmail desktop client

The application is a wrapper for Gmail / Google Inbox with unlimited account support, on top of which it adds features such as native desktop notifications (notification bubble and sound), unread email counter in the tray, and more.

Compared to other such applications, like Franz or Rambox, which support many other services, WMail provides a lot more customization, including per-account settings, and it integrates more tightly with the desktop. For instance, both Franz and Rambox notify you about new emails, but they don't display the most recent emails in the indicator / tray menu, like WMail. 

Also, WMail provides native desktop notifications (Franz and Rambox suppose to support this as well, but at least for me, the notifications don't work for Gmail), and an unread email counter on the Unity launcher (which Rambox supports but Franz doesn't).

Therefore, WMail is more useful if you only need Gmail, especially if you use multiple Gmail accounts, however, alternatives like Franz or Rambox might be a better option if you use multiple services.

WMail Gmail desktop client
WMail settings and the Unity Launcher unread email badge counter

The latest WMail 2.0.0 stable includes quite a few interesting changes. For instance, on Linux, there's a new option to ignore GPU blacklist (Settings > Advanced), which should solve rendering issues, another new option for displaying the unread email count in the Unity launcher icon, and more.

Here's a list of the most interesting changes in WMail 2.0.0 (stable):
  • Tray / AppIndicator changes:
    • tray icon designer in the settings screen;
    • option to change the background color of the tray icon;
    • auto-theming of tray depending on OS theme;
    • DPI Multiplier for tray icon for users with 4K monitors;
    • changed tray menu to have submenus for each mailbox (see the first screenshot in this article);
    • focus the WMail window when clicking on emails in the tray;
  • User interface:
    • unread count over app icon for Ubuntu users using Unity (General > Show app unread badge);
    • removed excess top space from side-menu on Linux, Windows and when the toolbar is enabled;
    • add option to set your own CSS and JavaScript on a per mailbox basis;
    • detecting when you launch WMail in an offline state and showing a splash screen rather than a broken WMail;
    • changed the layout of the settings screen to use the available screen space;
  • support for 38+ dictionary languages;
  • added Primary Inbox support for Gmail;
  • added ignore-gpu-blacklist flag under advanced for Linux users having rendering issues;
  • updated to Chrome 53, Electron 1.4.4 and React 15.3.2.

There are quite a few other changes and various bug fixes. For a complete list, see the application GitHub page.

Note that some of these changes were already available in WMail if you were using a prerelease, and not the stable version.

Download WMail

Download WMail (binaries available for Linux - deb and generic, Windows and Mac)

If you encounter bugs, report them @ GitHub.

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