Spotify – 10 things you should know and have.

10 things you should know about or can do with spotify to maximise your usage.  

Enjoy 😉   

1. Multiple platforms  

You can run spotify on a number of platforms its not just for windows.  

Spotify for linux: http://www.spotify.com/int/blog/archives/2010/07/12/linux/  

Spotify for MAC: http://www.spotify.com/int/download/mac/  

Spotify for your mobile/cell phone: http://www.spotify.com/int/mobile/overview/  

2. Search better  

Search Spotify using modifiers to restrict and refine your results. For example, to search for Madonna’s 1983 output you enter “madonna year:1982”. You can also search for a range of years, like this: “rolling stones year:1965-1972”. Other modifiers include “album”, “artist” and “genre”. These can be combined, for example: “album:love artist:cult” only finds tracks from The Cult’s “Love”. Finally, Boolean syntax can be used to exclude keywords, like this: “genre:trip-hop NOT morcheeba”.  

Spotify boolean search  

EXCLUSIVE TRACKS: Filter bands and tracks out of search results with the Boolean NOT operator – or use the minus sign “-“.  

3. Link to part of a track  

As originally cited on the Spotify blog, you can send friends a track URI with a time index embedded in it. Copy the Spotify URI and paste it into your email or message window, then edit the URI to add ‘#time’ to the end. For example, if the track has a brilliant solo at 1:26, you append #1:26 to the end of the URI. You can also do this with HTTP links, but you’ll have to replace the hash tag “#” with “%23”.  

4. Integrate Spotify with Firefox  

FoxyTunes is one of our favourite plugins. It enables you to control Spotify (and over 30 other media players on Windows) from Firefox. You can also search for information on the current track direct from your browser. Combine it with Spotify Search for a complete search and playback solution in your browser.  

FoxyTunes  

FIREFOX ONLY: Though available in versions for Firefox and Internet Explorer, Spotify support is currently exclusive to Mozilla’s browser  

5. Last.fm scrobbling  

This one’s not rocket science, but it is a feature that’s not exactly promoted so we thought it worthy of mention. As with other music software, like iTunes, et al., Spotify can scrobble the music you are playing on Spotify to Last.fm (i.e. send it to your Last.fm profile). 

It’s super-simple to enable this link-up. Just go to the edit menu from the top-right menu bar, click preferences, scroll down three or so options and you’ll see a Last.fm box. If you enter your Last.fm username and password and check the “Enable scrobbling to Last.fm” button, it will do just that. 

 

Now, your Last.fm “Recently Listened Tracks” will display your Spotify streams. 

 

 6. Download music from spotify.  

It is indeed possible to dig in to the spotify cache however the legal aspect of this is on you.  

Details here  

7. Re-broadcast Spotify to your shoutcast server  

*Create a “loop” between headphone jack and line-in using the 2.5mm cable
*Start up Spotify app
*Start Winamp and DNAS server, connect make sure DSP Plugin is connected to the DNAS server, but do not press play on winamp (you should be able to see the spotify input signal in shoutcast DSP)
*Start up your internet radio and connect to the streaming computer using the “My Stream” entry  

supported shoutcast servers available at http://lmas-networks.com 

8. Keyboard Shortcuts 

Function Windows Mac
Create new playlist Ctrl-N Cmd-N
Cut Ctrl-X Cmd-X
Copy Ctrl-C Cmd-C
Copy (alternative link) Ctrl-Alt-C Cmd-Alt-C
Paste Ctrl-V Cmd-V
Delete Del Del, Backspace
Select all Ctrl-A Cmd-A
Select none Ctrl-Shift-A Cmd-Shift-A
Play/pause Space Space
Next track Ctrl-Right Cmd-Right
Previous track Ctrl-Left Cmd-Left
Volume up Ctrl-Up Cmd-Up
Volume down Ctrl-Down Cmd-Down
Mute Ctrl-Shift-Down Cmd-Shift-Down
Show help F1 Cmd-?
Give focus to address/search field Ctrl-L Cmd-Alt-F, Cmd-L
Go back (browse) Alt-Left Cmd-Alt-Left, Cmd-[
Go forward (browse) Alt-Right Cmd-Alt-Right, Cmd-]
Play selected row Enter Enter
Browse to album of selected row Ctrl-Shift-Enter Cmd-Shift-Enter
Browse to artist of selected row Ctrl-Alt-Enter Cmd-Alt-Enter
Preferences Ctrl-P Cmd-,
Logout active user Ctrl-Shift-W Cmd-Shift-W
Quit Alt-F4 Cmd-Q
Hide window Cmd-H
Hide other applications’ windows Cmd-Alt-H
Close window Cmd-W
Minimize window Cmd-M
Restore window (from hidden state) Cmd-Alt-1

9. Drag and Drop 

We all know you can copy and paste the http link, but did you know you can simply drag and drop playlists, songs, and albums straight into most instant messengers, email clients and URL shorteners. Check that. 

10. Plug-in’s Plug-in’s Plug-in’s you cant have enough. 

Take a trip to http://www.spotifyplugins.com/ more quality spotify plug-in’s than you can shake a stick at…. one of them probably makes your morning coffee for you 😀 

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How To Backup Your Ubuntu System With Remastersys

After countless hours of configuring, tweaking, installing new applications onto your Ubuntu system, the last thing that you want to do is to reformat and start everything all over again. Remastersys is here to save you all this trouble. Remastersys is a simple and easy to use application that allows you to easily clone and backup your Ubuntu system so that you can quickly restore your computer to its previous state in the event that it crashes.

There are two thing that Remastersys can do:

  1. To do a full system backup, including all installed applications, their settings and your personal data, to a live CD or DVD. You can use this live CD or DVD to restore your system or to install it in another computer. You can also bring it around and use it everywhere as a Live CD.
  2. To create a custom distributable copy of your current Ubuntu system and share it with your friends.

Remastersys comes with a GUI to guide you through the process. There is little or no configuration to do. In as little as one step, you will be backing up your Ubuntu (or creating custom distributable iso) in no time. Remastersys works only in Ubuntu and its derivative such as Linux Mint.

Installing Remastersys

In your terminal,

gksu gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

Add the following line to the end of the file.

For Gutsy and Earlier

# Remastersys
deb http://www.geekconnection.org/remastersys/repository remastersys/

For Hardy and Newer with original grub

# Remastersys
deb http://www.geekconnection.org/remastersys/repository ubuntu/

For Karmic and Newer with grub2

# Remastersys
deb http://www.geekconnection.org/remastersys/repository karmic/

Save and exit.

Update the repositories and install Remastersys

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install remastersys

Once the installation has finished, go to System -> Administration -> Remastersys Backup

If you have any other windows or applications running, close them all. Click OK to continue.

remastersys-screenshot1

Select the action that you want to do. If you want to create a backup of your system, including all the personal data, highlight Backup and click OK. If you want to create a distributable copy of your current system, select Dist and click OK.

remastersys-selection

Remastersys will proceed to do the task that you have specified. This will take a long time, depending on the number of applications and files in your system.

remastersys-in-process

You will receive a prompt when the backup process is done. The backup cd filesystem and iso can be found at /home/remastersys/remastersys folder.

remastersys-finish

If you have Virtualbox or VMware installed, you can test the iso file by loading it in a virtual machine.

remastersys-bootup

Conclusion

Remastersys is a powerful, yet simple to use application. There is no technical knowledge involved. You simply load it up, select the option and off it goes. It is ideal for backing up your system so that you can restore it in the event your system crashes. I like the feature where it allows you to create a custom distribution of Ubuntu. Over the time, I have received many queries from friends on how to install the various applications. With Remastersys, I can now create my own distro with all the applications pre-installed and distribute them to my friends.

Turn Your Ubuntu Lucid to Mac OS X

lucid-mac-logoWe have previously done so with Ubuntu Hardy and Intrepid. Now, we are back again, this time with Ubuntu Lucid.

Being a long term release, Ubuntu Lucid comes with plenty of design changes that make all our previous Ubuntu to Mac OS X tutorial obsolete. Nevertheless, with a modified Mac4Lin theme and the maturity of the Global Menu, I am now able to make this tutorial a much simpler, quicker and easier one than all its previous iteration. If you are looking to transform your Ubuntu Lucid to Mac OS X, this is also the most complete one around. Continue after the break.

Installing Mac4Lin theme

Download the modified Mac4Lin theme (the original Mac4Lin theme is outdated).

Extract it to your Home folder.

Open the MacLin_Install_Mod folder and double click “Mac4Lin_Mod_installer.sh“. When prompted, select “Run in Terminal“.

lucid-mac-select-installer

lucid-mac-run-in-terminal

It will then proceed to change your theme. When it prompts you if you want to install the components that require root access, type ‘y‘ (without the quote)

lucid-mac-root-access

When it asks you for a choice to select the bootup screen, type ’0′ (without the quote).

lucid-mac-select-boot-screen

When you see the message “Type any key to continue…“, you should have transformed 80% of your system interface to Mac OS X.

Configuring the Global Menu

Open a terminal and type the following:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:globalmenu-team
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install gnome-globalmenu
killall gnome-panel

Once done, remove all stuffs from top left panel (Right click on the panel and select “Remove from Panel”).

Right click on the top panel and select Add to Panel. Select Main Menu, follow by the global menu panel applet.

Close the window. Now move the two items (right click and select Move) to the left hand corner and make sure they are side by side.

You should see something like the screenshot below:

lucid-mac-top-panel

Configuring the Dock

There are several dock applications that you can use, but personally I prefer to use Cairo Dock as it is easy to install and configure.

sudo apt-get install cairo-dock

Before you launch the Cairo dock application, remove the bottom panel (right click at the bottom panel and select Delete This Panel).

Cairo dock needs a compositing manager to work, so make sure that your system support Compiz before launching the app.

(Only if your system does not support Compiz: You can activate the in-built metacity compositing manager with the command:

gconftool-2 --type boolean --set /apps/metacity/general/compositing_manager TRUE

)

Launch Cairo dock (Menu -> Accessories -> Cairo Dock). Make sure to set it to launch everytime you startup your computer.

Configuring the Login screen

To change the background of the login screen, simply follow the instruction at the change Ubuntu Lucid login screen tutorial or use Gdm2Setup.

Other optional tweaks

Expo

Expo effect is part of the feature in Compiz. You can easily enable the feature in Compiz Config Settings Manager (if you have not installed, click here to install).

lucid-mac-compiz-expo

Once you have activated the Expo feature, you can press Win + e button to bring up the expo window.

Dashboard

The Dashboard effect can be emulated using Screenlets and Compiz Widget layer.

Install Screenlets and the Compiz Widget layer plugin

sudo apt-get install screenlets compiz-fusion-plugins-extra

Open CompizConfig Settings Manager and activate the Widget layer feature.

lucid-mac-enable-widget

Launch Screenlets (Menu -> Applications -> Accessories -> Screenlets) and start the widgets that you want to use. Right click on the widget and select Properties. Go to the Options tab and check the box “Treat as widget”

lucid-mac-screenlets-widget

You can now press F9 to see your widgets in the dashboard.

Screenshots

lucid-mac-screenshot2

lucid-mac-screenshot1

lucid-mac-screenshot3

Uninstallation

To uninstall the Mac4Lin theme, simply run the uninstaller in the Mac4Lin_Install_Mod folder.

Double click the Mac4Lin_Mod_Uninstaller.sh. When prompted, select “Run in Terminal”.

You will be asked to log out and login again for the uninstallation to be completed.

Image credit: louisvolant

Scary New Horror Adventure Available for Linux

 

Amnesia: The Dark DescentThe folks who brought the three-part Penumbra series to the Linux community now bring us another even more terrifying adventure. Amnesia: The Dark Descent follows Daniel as he confronts a sinister dark shadow in his quest to hunt and kill evil Alexander in order to save his own mind and life. Danger hides in every corner. Risk life and limb at every turn, your very sanity in peril with every step into the dark descent.

The first-person adventure immerses the user in the spooky setting of an ancient desolate and crumbling Prussian castle. You, as the hero, navigates the terrifying environment using all your wits and knowledge to wriggle out of one tight spot after another. Hang around in any one area too long and you will begin to lose your mind and, if you’re not careful, even your life. The eerie atmosphere makes it difficult to find the hidden clues and the necessary elements needed to progress. With ghostly sounds and poor lighting, it’s little wonder one can hardly determine their next step. The dark shadow is always lurking and often right on your heals.

After nearly three years of development, Frictional Games is proud to announce Amnesia: The Dark Descent has gone gold. To celebrate and whet your appetites, a Demo was released on Friday, September 3. Full retail pricing and downloads became available September 8. Purchases include full versions for each major platform: Windows, Mac, and Linux; as well as a Steam activation key. Linux minimum requirements are listed as a 2010 released distro, 3D acceleration drivers for at least a Radeon HD or NVIDIA 6, 2.0Ghz processor, 2048 MB memory, and 3 GB of hard drive space. Nerves of steel are recommended but not required.

Frictional Games is one of the few companies that release their high-quality games for Linux at the same time and with equal priority as the other platforms. Their awesome Penumbra series is available now as a single package collection for the remarkable value price of $6. The games of Frictional Games are well suited for the gamer, puzzle fan, or horror lover.

An official trailer is available on YouTube and the newest trailer is available here.

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