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Desktop bubble notifications [Was: Re: Add function to make frame topmos

From: David De La Harpe Golden
Subject: Desktop bubble notifications [Was: Re: Add function to make frame topmost?]
Date: Sun, 02 May 2010 22:32:55 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla-Thunderbird (X11/20091109)

Jan Djärv wrote:

Linking emacs, at least x11/gtk emacs, against libnotify and supporting
a (notify-send ...) or something usable from within emacs would probably
be quite doable. Maybe the elisp api could be wrapped around the other
platforms' native similar facilities on non-x11.

This is a good idea.

Hmm. The "other platforms" thing was worrying me, particularly given the build-from-scratch angle Lennart came in on, so I searched the internet outside my usual haunts:

*** Growl, snarl, libnotify. mumbles:

Macosx seems to have a third-party add-on called "growl" [1] for notifications that seems to be popular bordering on de-facto standard and appears to have a conceptually similar (though ObjC) api to libnotify, as well as a similar command line client.

Growl is probably acceptably licensed [2], so maybe depending on growl on macosx for notifications is an option.

There's a "growl for windows" [3], and similar system called "snarl". [4] (haven't found their licenses)

And another project called "mumbles" on fd.o systems [5] (and KDE has KNotify), though as emacs is a gtk+ app for the purposes of the discussion, libnotify is probably the thing to use.

*** Existing Emacs support for libnotify, growl and snarl (!)

So, um. Turns out, someone (one Jonathan Arkell) has actually written some basic support of growl-like systems for emacs, including libnotify, called (somewhat cryptically) "todochiku.el". It is simply using the command-line clients for the respective notification systems on the various platforms (like the one I used) rather than the more versatile C/ObjC/C++ apis. [6][7].

IMNHO core emacs support should probably be by library bindings (or wire protocol) rather than commmand line callout as used by the existing todochiku.el though - generally more powerful for all systems, especially on fd.o.

[1] http://growl.info/
[2] http://growl.googlecode.com/hg/License.txt
[3] http://www.growlforwindows.com/gfw/default.aspx
[4] http://www.fullphat.net/index.php
[5] http://www.mumbles-project.org/


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