The Stylus Friendly RSS Home Applet

For Users

This application is for you if you love Nokia's RSS home screen applet but wish it would display more headlines (or need less space). In fact, this application is Nokia's RSS home screen applet, copypasted and republished, with only a few lines of code changed. Look at the difference:

Homescreen with new appletThe new, stylus friendly version shows seven headlines in this layout. (Well, almost …)

Homescreen with new appletFor comparison: Here's the original Nokia version. Three headlines. Not much. You need to scroll manually or activate autoscroll and wait for more news as the list slowly moves up.

If you use the stylus rather than your fingers: Get it! (That's why it's got its name.) If you prefer finger usage, you might still want it: It shows all the headlines on your home screen without wasting space. You can still tap anywhere on the applet to open the full feed reader application and read the actual news there.

Download

It is recommended that you install the applet from the extras repository. You'll easily get updates then. A one-click install link for adding the repository and downloading the application is provided over at the downloads section.

Of course you can still go to the files list of the garage project site for more (probably older) versions. Or click here for release 4 (needs latest OS2008/Diablo).

For Developers

As I said: This is Nokia's code. Not a lot of changes, really, except line height and line break handling. Still, there are probably bugs in it: I don't know C and I don't know GTK+. All I did was read the code and try to understand what needs to be changed. So somebody better have a look at it.

Also, it would be cool if we could combine the two modes into one application and make stylus-/finger-friendliness an option in the settings. This is currently above my head as it would also require to change the settings dialog which, as I get it, is shared with the main application. I can't do that, but I'm sure you know how.

Oh, yes, there's more: See the applet to the right that shows my contacts? Five is the maximum. Not much, right? I'd love to have an applet that behaves much like this, just with the reduced line height, maybe even without the avatars. I don't think Nokia made this code public, at least I didn't find it. Any ideas on how to achieve this?

As usual, the garage project page contains everything you need.

Motivation

Ever since I got my N800 (I had a 770 before) I have been unhappy about how the new RSS applet wasted space. Well, it wasted space for my use case: I don't tap on the headline to open the web page. I only have a quick look at the headlines as they appear on top of the applet. So the finger friendly, extra-large list items don't help me at all. All they do is make less headlines appear in the same space.

Now that I found I could change it (easily), I did.

About The Author

I'm Oskar Welzl, live in Vienna, Austria, and got my first tablet in March 2006. (That was, of course, a 770 then. I now own an N800.) You might want to look at my maemo.org profile, my personal homepage or (in case you understand some German) my weblog.