i3 Windows Manager

i3 is a pretty windows manager. I think it's a pretty cool add-on considering how frequent I like to use terminal (and would like to streamline my terminal usages to other GUI stuff like web-browsing). I especially love their tab layout ($mod+w) and horizontal/vertical split function ($mod+h and $mod+v respectively).

Before I used i3, I would use a multiplexer called tmux to open multiple tabs when I am working on different parts of code (or working with different programs). This would be useful if I were just needing to work with terminal and tui stuff. However, this would not work (at least I don't think) with graphical interfaces. Then a friend recommended me to switch to i3 from the default Unity desktop manager, and I definitely appreciated that change.

Especially since I mainly work on a laptop now, which means you have to use a awkward trackpad, or plug in an additional mouse (sometimes I am too lazy to do that) to direct the cursor, being able to use a keyboard to do everything makes life SO MUCH BETTER <3.

There are some scripts/configurations that I had to write to help make my life easier though... I will add them on as I remember:

  • To execute some bash scripts/ applications on startup, I had to go to the ~/.config/i3/config and add an exec --no-start-id <command> line to it.
  • I used to have redshift in the background whenever I logged in, (it makes my screen so much easier on the eyes, especially when staring at a white browser). Apparently sometimes just calling redshift makes it stuck on the geoclue stage, so I ended up writing a script that ran the where-am-i demo provided by geoclue to get coordinates and somehow that works.
  • I also realized that i3 did not have a battery low notifications (sometimes I don't notice the battery life, especially with its small font in the lower right corner, so I searched up on Google and they suggestd to write a script using output from acpi -b. (I also had to install that first using apt-get). Here is that script that hopefully notifies me whenever my battery is low. TODO: I need to add some sounds to that so that I will hear that as well.
  • I also had to change the $mod key to the Win key (Mod4) because Intellij likes to put the Alt key in a lot of their shortcuts, (including the almighty, all-purpose Alt-Enter shortcut key).