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Thread: Is there a theme or environment that works for an HTPC?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    5

    Is there a theme or environment that works for an HTPC?

    Hi Guys,

    Been using Ubuntu as my HTPC for a while now, just got a HTPC remote and am finding the standard Ubuntu theme far too small to be used from the couch.

    I tried using XMBC but the lack of proper web browser integration is a deal breaker and trying to get a browser to work via the advanced launcher makes it exit from full screen and sometimes breaks it all together.

    I was wondering if there was a theme or desktop environment for Ubuntu that has large icons, text and buttons which would be ideal for navigating from a distance. I've tried searching far and wide but have come up with nothing apart from the gnome tweak tool but thats not really a solution.

    Any suggestions would be really appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    /run/shm
    Beans
    825
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal

    Re: Is there a theme or environment that works for an HTPC?

    Ubuntu TV? Not really sure how to get it though... You could also go for an Android based solution, XBMC can now be run from Android, so if your HTPC can work with the Android x86 project, you could give it a go.
    Quote Originally Posted by Linus Torvalds
    "Most good programmers do programming not because they expect to get paid or get adulation by the public, but because it is fun to program."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    5

    Re: Is there a theme or environment that works for an HTPC?

    Well the problem with android for an HTPC is the lack of flash player and being that almost all streaming web content is flash based it renders it kinda useless. I know you can still install flash but it really doesn't work very well if at all.

    I was hoping there was a theme or something that used large icons and was intended for HTPC's, kinda strange that there isnt.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    /run/shm
    Beans
    825
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal

    Re: Is there a theme or environment that works for an HTPC?

    Flash? YouTube and Vimeo both use HTML5 by default now... Android also has native apps for them. Other sites could be supported from within XBMC actually, for example CollegeHumor. They have a pure Flash player but XBMC has a plugin for their site. Then YouTube is also supported, Vimeo and most popular sites. Take a look at the Video Add-ons inside XBMC. I just took a look and it's saying there are 199 Video Add-ons, most of which are plugins to watch streams from websites.

    EDIT: Found how to get Ubuntu TV installed
    Last edited by Lisiano; February 28th, 2013 at 12:17 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Linus Torvalds
    "Most good programmers do programming not because they expect to get paid or get adulation by the public, but because it is fun to program."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Beans
    5

    Re: Is there a theme or environment that works for an HTPC?

    Youtube? lol no, who cares about youtube? I mean online video streaming hosts are almost all flash, some are divx but not many.

    Unless XMBC can enable me to surf whatever sites I want then its really of no use to me.

    Was just hoping there was a theme for Ubuntu that was smilar to what a mobile device would have, large icons for fast 1 click navigation.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    /run/shm
    Beans
    825
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal

    Re: Is there a theme or environment that works for an HTPC?

    [RANT]
    1. You can't control flash elements using a remote. (Unless the remote has a DPad which controls the mouse)
    2. An HTPC is not intended to multi-task in a GUI environment.
    3. An HTPC is basically a media center, a box running something like XBMC or MythTV.
    4. XBMC contains a ton of plugins for different sites that offer podcasts, anime or TV shows.
    5. YouTube is the 3rd most visited website in the world (Based on Alexa ranking 2012), beaten only by Facebook (2nd) and Google (1st). So pretty much almost everyone cares about YouTube.
    6. YouTube operates as a "online video streaming host", it is available online, it offers videos, it offers them as streams, it hosts the said videos.
    7. Most hosts widely known have switched to HTML5 now.
    8. Most widely known podcasters have switched to HTML5 now.
    9. Porn hosts have started switching to HTML5 now.
    10. Illegal TV show and movie hosts continue to use flash.
    11. If you wish to surf websites, go grab a keyboard and a mouse. Preferably sit behind a monitor aswell.
    12. Practically, icons on mobile devices are smaller if we view them side by side with default Unity icons on a monitor running at native resolution.
    13. Pressing Alt+F1 enables keyboard navigation for Unity.

    [/RANT]
    Last edited by Lisiano; February 28th, 2013 at 02:35 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Linus Torvalds
    "Most good programmers do programming not because they expect to get paid or get adulation by the public, but because it is fun to program."

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