Mowedline is a status bar program for X, written in Chicken Scheme with XLib, Xft, and DBus. It was inspired by dzen2, and like that program, aims at an unobtrusive, minimalist look. It is based on a client/daemon design, where the daemon maintains one or more windows, and the client sends commands to the daemon over DBus to update the contents of those windows. A mowedline window is divided into widgets. Each widget has a unique name, by which the client can refer to it to update its contents.

The runtime configuration is written in scheme. It can either be ~/.mowedline or ~/.config/mowedline/init.scm. This file is loaded when the daemon starts, and sets variables that affect global settings or creates windows. If the config script does not create any windows (or if there is no config script) then the default window is created.

Obtaining Mowedline

The source code can be obtained from my git repository.

You will also need to download and install one egg which is not yet available via chicken-install:

After cloning the xft-egg repository with git, enter the directory and do a test build with chicken-install -n. It may tell you that you need to install other eggs first, like the xtypes egg. For each, do for example: chicken-install xtypes. You will also need to have Xft development headers installed on your system. On Debian, the package for these is called libxft-dev. Once the egg builds successfully, install it with chicken-install -s.

To build mowedline itself, enter its directory and do csc mowedline.scm, then csc mowedline-client.scm. If chicken reports a missing dependency, install it with chicken-install.

Project Status

January 29, 2013: Verion 0.2pre1 — mowedline has been split into two programs, mowedline and mowedline-client, to address the problem of simultaneous multiple server starting, discussed here.

August 30, 2011: Xft, unicode, color, and more, all supported in mowedline 0.2pre.

August 26, 2011: Progress on writing Xft bindings for Chicken Scheme. They're not polished enough to release yet, but this will allow me to start experimenting with using Xft in mowedline.

March 24, 2011: Mowedline 0.1 The program now has the minimum feature set to be considered useful, though much work remains to be done.


Mowedline is licensed under the terms of GPL3.