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Michal Hruby, one of the main AWN developers has just announced the release of a new application called Synapse (codename "Acetylcholine"). Synapse is a semantic launcher written in Vala that you can use to start applications as well as find and access relevant documents and files by making use of the Zeitgeist engine:

Currently the development was focused primarily around using Zeitgeist for the searches, and there are even plugins that process the output from the Zeitgeist plugin and either try to improve the results, or find similar files on the filesystem (for example the Hybrid search plugin). Still, all of the functionality is based on plugins, so further development can lead anywhere.

- Michal Hruby, the main Synapse developer

You'll probably think "Gnome Do" when you first see the screenshots but it actually doesn't have anything to do with Gnome Do except the purpose (obviously) and the fact that it looks amazing!

For such a great application, a video is a must so here's one I've just recorded (just a quick overview):


Synapse already features quite a few plugins which allow you to control Rhythmbox or Banshee, execute commands, look up dictionary words, open commonly used directories, suspend and hibernate your computer and a very interesting "hybrid search" plugin which tries to improve results returned by the Zeitgeist plugin by looking for similar files on the filesystem.

Synapse plugins

synapse plugins


Besides the default theme, Synapse comes with 3 other themes: Mini, Virgilio and Dual:

Synapse mini theme
(Synapse - Mini theme)

Synapse Virgilio theme
(Synapse - Virgilio theme)

Synapse virgilio theme
(Synapse - Dual theme)

I personally love all these themes. But let's hear it from you: which one do you like the most?

Install Synapse in Ubuntu

Update: Synapse is now available in the official Ubuntu repositories so to install it, use the following command:
sudo apt-get install syanpse

 If you're not using Ubuntu, get the source code @ Launchpad.

Then run Synapse via Applications > Accessories. Once the application is running, summon it using the CTRL + SPACE keys (this can be changed in the Synapse settings).

Want an application to provide results for Synapse?

The easiest way to do that would be to push data to Zeitgeist (or at least to recently-used) and you've got Synapse integration for free. If you need something more complex, we'll welcome your plugin.

Found a bug? Report it @ Launchpad: https://bugs.launchpad.net/synapse-project/+filebug

[via ~mhr3]