New user saying hi

Robert William Hutton rwh at
Tue Aug 12 03:14:55 CEST 2008

chris.barnard at wrote:
> I don't usually use mailing lists, so I hope it's not bad etiquette just 
> to say hi!

Probably.  But you're not just saying hi, you've got a couple of good 
questions here.

> I've bought a Neo Freerunner and debug board - all looks pretty good so 
> far. This is my first real use of Linux and I'm beginning to feel like 
> I'm throwing myself off the deep end a bit, but I'm a self-taught 

Congrats on making it this far.  Believe me when I say that as a 
programmer you might find it difficult to go back to whatever non-unixy 
OS you used to use.  It's addictive. ;)

> What really interested me about this project however was the possibility 
> that I might be able to get into the user interface development a bit. I 
> have a few ideas for a mobile GUI that I'd like to put into practice. So 

I think you should probably get started with "themes".  In the various 
windowing toolkits that are in use there are themes that control how 
widgets are drawn and such.  For example, the GTK theme files are here:


See this ML post:

There should be similar mechanisms for theming the other toolkits, such 
as qtopia somewhere as well.

So, that allows you to control the appearance of the existing widgets 
and such.  Next you'll need to actually start changing the code of the 
apps that actually draw the widgets.  You'll need to download the 
development environment and start looking at the code.  Which is beyond 
my abilities right now, but there is a bit of info floating around on 
the ML and in the wiki about getting this all set up.

HTH! :)



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