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#1 2013-04-04 19:16:29

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Crunchbang for my Mom?

I am in the middle of setting up an Acer Aspire All In One for my near 80 year old Mom. I had her using Ubuntu 11.04 for 15 months some time ago and she really liked it. She is not computer literate but appreciates something that just works.

There are four basic things she does:

1. Facebook (www.facebook.com)
2. Skype (the application)
3. Email (www.gmail.com)
4. Banking (www.herbank.com)

I have at the moment Mint 14 installed (all flavors so I can see which one she would like. Then it dawned on me. Why don't I try Crunchbang 11. I was thinking that by using an app like Synapse, she could for example press F1 and then launch whatever she needs to be it mail, banking etc.... Or, I could assign key commands to the four items listed above. I want to keep it very simple for her.

Thoughts and ideas? I would really appreciate some feedback on this. If the above seems feasible, What is the best way to implement this?

I love the simplicity of Crashbang and I think my Mom would really enjoy using Crunchbang..


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#2 2013-04-04 19:29:30

uname
#! Junkie
Registered: 2013-03-15
Posts: 453

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

You can use perhaps wbar, cairo or another dock for the four applications.

Last edited by uname (2013-04-04 19:31:42)

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#3 2013-04-04 19:33:25

snowpine
#!-a-roo
Registered: 2008-11-24
Posts: 2,920

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

Why switch from Ubuntu if she really likes it? Stick her on 12.04 and she'll have long term support well into her 80s (through April 2017). Or Mint 13 (based on Ubuntu 12.04).


/hugged

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#4 2013-04-04 19:37:16

uname
#! Junkie
Registered: 2013-03-15
Posts: 453

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

+1

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#5 2013-04-04 19:38:52

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

Thanks for the feedback. I guess a large part of it has to do with me trying out distros that I think will work for her in the simplest way. I was thinking of creating three .desktop files that will launch to her preferred sites. This way her desktop would be empty and all she has to invoke is a hot key of like I said before Synapse. I'm just brainstorming here with possibilities I can look at. 12.04 seems like a nice alternative as well with the extended support.

I'm just having too much fun. That's the real problem here smile


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#6 2013-04-05 01:18:57

antiv0rtex
#! Die Hard
From: Earth
Registered: 2012-10-05
Posts: 574

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

rmcellig wrote:

I'm just having too much fun. That's the real problem here smile

I know the feeling, haha wink

Re the Ubuntu question, it's pretty much polish vs. minimalist-ness. Ubuntu hides all of the "geek stuff" beneath a shiny exterior, which cold be useful if your mom doesn't want to call you every time Openbox encounters some kind of syntax error. However, CrunchBang can be configured to be VERY simple to use - and if you go with Statler (Stable), the likelihood of random borkage is greatly reduced.

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#7 2013-04-05 08:06:15

fatmac
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-11-14
Posts: 1,948

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

Older people generally don't like change.
If she is happy with what she is using let her keep it.


Linux since 1999
Currently:  AntiX, & Crunchbang.
A good general beginners book for Linux :- http://rute.2038bug.com/index.html.gz
A good Debian read :- http://debian-handbook.info/get/now/

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#8 2013-04-05 16:16:39

Hachiman
#! Member
From: Indianapolis, IN
Registered: 2013-01-18
Posts: 80

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

Normally, I would support the "keep the system that your mom is used to", however my experience with Ubuntu was that it would update and that update would break one or more items (e.g. sound, skype, etc). On the flip-side, once it's been set-up CrunchBang seems to be very stable and relaxed. If it were me, I would be tempted to set up #! with a conky and menu items specifically designed for your mom. Y'know: superkey + s = skype, favorite websites in chrome or iceweasel that your mom uses, that sort of thing. The #! interface does take a little getting used to, but as fatmac rightly says: Older people generally don't like change. Once it's set up, and if you tailor it to your mom's requirements, it would be sweet!

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#9 2013-04-05 19:26:26

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

Hachiman

Couldn't agree more.

I'm in the middle of doing that now. All I am doing is modifying the Conky shortcuts that appear on the desktop, I installed Synapse with F1 as the hot ket so she can access her sites/programs that way as well, and all she sees is a basically black background. Very simple, lean and suited to her needs. I also modified the Openbox menu with links to where she needs to go. Try doing this on a Mac. She had an iMac years ago and loved it but since I introduced her to Linux a couple of years ago, she has been telling all her friends about Linux. Pretty cool smile


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#10 2013-04-06 06:32:05

DapperMe17
#! CrunchBanger
From: Todd's Gang
Registered: 2012-10-19
Posts: 219

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

rmcellig,

Good job, and of greater importance...you take great care of your mother too! wink

Keep us posted.

Last edited by DapperMe17 (2013-04-06 06:32:26)

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#11 2013-04-06 13:51:44

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

I will for sure keep you posted! I'm meeting my Mom today so I will be talking to her about Crunchbang as an option she may want to consider. The way I configured it is that she has a blank screen (with Conky and tint2). That's it. All she has to do is invoke the Openbox menu where I put shortcuts to the things she needs to access. I also set up keyboard shortcuts to display in Conky relating to the places she likes to go to. And, everything is big so that she can see it properly on the 23" screen. Love it!!!


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#12 2013-04-06 13:57:53

th3pun15h3r
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2011-11-22
Posts: 511

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

+1 for adding a dock like docky to a statler install and use chromium and make its default screen icon links to her sites like facebook etc.  I did this for a laptop with waldorf as a media pc with a docky that has xbmc, netflix-desktop and pithos for pandora radio. smile

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#13 2013-04-06 13:59:06

dura
Bloated Gimp
From: interzone
Registered: 2012-09-15
Posts: 2,106

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

If she likes simplicity she might be interested in Arch Linux; it is designed with simplicity in mind.

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#14 2013-04-06 14:08:21

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

I never thought of that. That's really cool!


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#15 2013-04-06 14:11:47

dura
Bloated Gimp
From: interzone
Registered: 2012-09-15
Posts: 2,106

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

I was being sarcastic, but no reason Arch couldn't be used.

My play was on the semantics of simplicity.

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#16 2013-04-06 18:14:51

lcafiero
The #! Guy
From: Felton, California, USA
Registered: 2011-07-21
Posts: 2,196
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

snowpine wrote:

Why switch from Ubuntu if she really likes it?

I would have to agree with snowpine here and suggest you have her stay on Ubuntu, as funny as that sounds coming from me, on several levels.


Res publica non dominetur | Larry the CrunchBang Guy speaks of the pompetous of CrunchBang

CrunchBang Forum moderator

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#17 2013-04-06 19:17:56

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

I was referring to th3pun15h3r's comment not your Dura. I don't think I would ever install Arch for my Mom. That would be a disaster. Anyway, I have a lot of options to consider and I might in the end keep Mint on the computer as a backup if she doesn't like Crunchbang.

I have a feeling after talking with her today that she will really like the Crunchbang simplicity and not the Arch simplicity smile


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#18 2013-04-06 21:31:12

ew
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2012-09-27
Posts: 1,975

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

Crunchbang is fine for everyone. Don`t mess it up with Cairo-dock. Create a tint2rc with launchers to the things she uses, and add a launcher to the cb-exit script. That`s it. Disable compositing and conky by commenting them out in the autostart-file. The less she`ll have running, the better. If she doesn`t have any tricky hardware, I can not see why Crunchbang wouldn`t be just as easy to use as Ubuntu, and a lot faster....


- apt-mark hold account

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#19 2013-04-06 21:47:19

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

I am going to keep her computer as simple as possible. No dock, just the magic of right clicking anywhere and a menu appears. This is what I love. Something simple like this without all the eye candy. I installed Synapse which is similar to Gnome-Do. Do you know of any other launcher that is similar that I can try and has low dependencies?


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#20 2013-04-07 04:06:16

DapperMe17
#! CrunchBanger
From: Todd's Gang
Registered: 2012-10-19
Posts: 219

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

+1 for keeping in clean, as well as simple.

Your mom probably just wants it to work.

Maybe you would consider eliminating the right click menu, as navigating a menu each time gets a little tiresome after a while. I find that programs/links from a bar is just less hassle in that age bracket. Something a little simpler to set up, like lx panel, xfce panel or...

Possibly keep the screen clean and uncluttered, and just use a bar loaded with her minimal needs.

Last edited by DapperMe17 (2013-04-07 04:10:52)

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#21 2013-04-07 11:34:56

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

I'm toying around with a bar like LX panel or xfce as well just to give her more options. I like xfce-panel. Very simple and functional.


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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#22 2013-04-07 12:57:35

th3pun15h3r
#! Die Hard
Registered: 2011-11-22
Posts: 511

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

lxpanel would be good and maybe the software-center so if she wants to look for other programs like simple games etc...she can easily install it and they will automatically show up on lxpanel

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#23 2013-04-07 15:25:11

rmcellig
#! Die Hard
From: Ottawa, Canada
Registered: 2012-11-15
Posts: 550
Website

Re: Crunchbang for my Mom?

th3pun15h3r,

Great advice! LXpanel is such a simple and functional and light panel. I was thinking of installing software center because I can't see her going into SPM or the command line.


Cheers Randy
www.mcran.com - my web site
www.chuo.fm - My radio show Sundays  noon-2pm EST or 89.1 fM

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