Setting up my new tablet PC – apps, config, etc.

  • AdAware: check the computer for any malware from previous owner’s use – checked out clean
  • Dropbox: synchronize my files
  • Emacs: note-taking, personal information management, awesomeness
    • Set HOME directory in Control Panel – System – Environment Variables
    • Use mklink to create symbolic links under Windows
    • Write a simple .emacs that loads the dotemacs.el in My Dropbox/elisp
  • AutoHotkey: map Caps to Control and create all sorts of other useful shortcuts
    • Add My Dropbox/personal/shortcuts.ahk to my startup
  • Launchy: quick access to programs
  • Inkscape and MyPaint: Favourite free drawing programs
    • Set drawing tools to use last selected style
    • Set preferences for transforms: don’t scale strokes, etc.
    • Tinker with smoothing to get something that feels right
  • Google Chrome: set up synchronization for bookmarks and extensions
  • FeedDemon: Feed reader, easier than using Google Reader interface
  • StrokeIt: Gestures make pen computing even easier
    • Set up custom gestures for Inkscape, FeedDemon, and general operation
  • Windows Live Writer
  • Windows setup: Use a plain black background, turn off unnecessary visual effects, go back to old form of Alt-Tab. (When alt-tabbing, press the other alt key to switch to classic view.)

And that should be enough to get me working smoothly for now. I might dual-boot Ubuntu or run it in a virtual machine, depending on how well this 32-bit version of Windows 7 performs. If I find myself spending more time in Microsoft Windows because of all the tablet-y goodness, I’ll go the VM route, or I’ll give Cygwin another try.

SCHEDULED: 2010-08-29 Sun 08:00

  • Hi Sacha! I am big fan of your blog!

    I see that you are using lots of tools that I like to use too: launchy, autohotkey, dropbox and inkscape.

    I’d like to read more about how you are setting your emacs with Dropbox, and use mklink.

    I also would like to read more about how you use autohotkey.

    if possible, write a little bit about it. Thanks for sharing!

  • mklink /d elisp “My Dropbox\elisp” adds the symbolic link ~/elisp to my home directory. I do that instead of ~\My Dropbox\elisp because I’m used to referring to just ~/elisp, and my config files refer to that path.

    Autohotkey: Aside from mapping CapsLock to Control, I set up function keys to start or switch to common applications (Emacs, web browser) so that I don’t have to worry about alt-tabbing to them, and I use F12 as a general-purpose shortcut key that I map to whatever function I need to automate at that time. I also use it for text abbreviations. For example, I replace “-hi” with “Hello! What can I help you with?”, which helps a lot in instant messaging conversations. Other AutoHotkey-related posts in my blog

    What do you use autohotkey for?

    Hope that helps!

  • Hi Sacha,

    1) For emacs stuff that I need to use between windows and linux, I set a variable depending on the system. For example, this is the code for my org-directory:

    (if (equal window-system ‘x)
    (setq dropbox-folder “~/Dropbox/”)
    (setq dropbox-folder “~/My Dropbox/”))

    (setq org-directory (concat dropbox-folder “org/”))

    It seems mklink is easier, but the above code is working well. Maybe I will try mklink in the future to get rid of this small customization in my .emacs file.

    2) I use autohotkey mainly to expand text abbreviations. I like to work with text files and windows notepad, so I use autohotkey to expand abbreviations. This feature helps me writing emails too. I also use some functions to insert timestamps. This is useful when I am not using orgmode inside emacs. I do not use keys to start programs because most of the time I use Launchy. I can call Launchy and type a few keys to open an application.

    So far I did not explore all programming features of autohotkey to automate my tasks.

    One of the repetive tasks that I do almost daily is switch between different IP addresses. Does anybody know if I can have this automated with Autohotkey?

  • You could use netsh to set up the IP addresses from the command line, and make that more convenient with Autohotkey or Launchy. Hope that helps!

  • Thanks a lot!

    I did not know about netsh. This is the tool I was looking for.

    After your comment, I found a nice blog post about it.