The previous post introduced application launchers and how well they fit with the Eee PC. Of them, Mercury is the most interesting one: relatively easy to install on the Eee PC and it works well. Unfortunately, Mercury did not seem to support google searches or the on-the-fly calculator like in Katapult. The first time, I also didn't see a source code package.

This led me to write a new application launcher: Kysrun. The name comes from "keystroke application runner". But the name also sounds like "KISS Run" as in the KISS principle.

After pressing the ALT+SPACE keyboard shortcut, the Kysrun window pops up above your desktop filled with applications. See how typing a few letters suffices to start Firefox:

Making a new small program like an application launcher looked easy. First, the "" shell script in Mercury showed how simple the indexing could be. Some tricks to work around peculiarities of the OS were also easy to understand. Second, Python and PyQT are installed by default on the Eee OS. Now, having never programmed with PyQT or even QT, this was an opportunity to discover PyQT and Qt.

After one evening, the first version was working. Programming with PyQT proved to be very quick.

A few days after writing Kysrun, I saw the link to the source package of Mercury. Duh, how did I miss that !

Kysrun does a few things more than Mercury. For example, the indexing is built in Kysrun and is started from inside Kysrun. The indexing even starts automatically the first time. Kysrun can run searches on wikipedia and imdb besides google. Kysrun also has an on-the-fly calculator a bit like Katapult. Last but not least, extending Kysrun is very easy with its simple Python implementation.

On the Eee PC, nothing needs to be installed besides Kysrun itself. Despite being originally designed for the Eee PC, Kysrun also works well on normal laptops or desktop computers. I even switched from Katapult to Kysrun on my laptop. You can download Kysrun from and try it out.