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If it compiles, ship it! (or: Kannasaver goes Playground)

October 17, 2009

A few months back I wondered, what happened to Kannasaver, a nice little screen saver that displays Japanese Hiragana and Katakana. In KDE 3 times, Kannasaver was my standard screen saver (although I rarely stare at my screensaver so I still cannot write Hiragana/Katakana yet :)) but it was not ported to KDE 4 back then.

A few weeks back I was bored (yeah, I was really shocked about that as well *coughs*) and started porting it to KDE 4. It was meant as a throw-away project since I never ported an application and everything felt spongy. However, I managed to break everything horribly and then spent the whole evening making it compile again. Ending up with a pile of garbage… that compiled. :)

Yesterday I sent a mail to the Kannasaver developer to see if he would be interested in that pile. He was, so I sat down and cleaned-up the mess a bit. We had a nice short chat about the future of Kannasaver, the meaning of Kanjisaver and why some Germans have their lunch later than others. ;)

Still yesterday, I imported what I had by then to the playground module of the KDE SVN. I had my work in a local Git repository (so easy to set up) and git-svn is a bitch so the rest of the evening was cleanup time again *sigh*. In the meantime, my roommate started to scroll through the code, ran it and ironed out some rough edges.

Today the result of the last two days is that the screen saver runs again and integrates nicely into systemsettings. So if you like to have Hiragana and Katakana on your monitor, you can already run it. If you want to configure anything though, you will have to wait. While porting, I had some strange ideas, which led to a totally broken settings dialog. It looks ok but does nothing yet. That’s why it is in playground, right? :)

Still today, the Kannasaver developer applied for a KDE SVN account to join the effort… which is great because I should rather be doing university stuff right now. :)

Tomorrow, … Well, let us see.
Possible plans are to re-merge the Kanjisaver, making it a general vocabulary saver, having it feed your cat and such. But for now there are enough issues left before the port can be called final.

So, if you try it and find something strange (bear with the settings dialog for a while), feel free to comment here or contact icwiener on freenode.

A-ri-ga-to-u go-za-i-ma-su


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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Askrates permalink
    October 17, 2009 8:47 pm

    That is indeed great news, whereas Kannasaver may not have broad mainstream appeal, it is definitely a great tool for masochists like me who want to learn Japanese.

    I was really happy to hear that you are planning a Kanji version. Kana are just the first step, and shouldn’t really take that long to learn. As for Kanji *shudders*…

  2. Kryptos permalink
    October 18, 2009 7:33 pm

    I tried to compile. It worked fine. But then how can I set the screensaver to be kannasaver, since it does not appear on the screensavers list?

  3. October 18, 2009 8:29 pm

    @Kryptos:
    Hmm, here is appears in the list in
    systemsettings -> Desktop -> Screen Saver

    Where do you install it to?

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