How to Install Beatbox in Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal?

As many knows GNU/Linux has its fair share of Apple Mac OSX :/. Starting with the classic Gnome, Gnome 3, XFCE and even the all new Ubuntu Unity desktop which is heavily "obsessed" with Apple's way of doing things are just a few to mention. Although I have never used a Mac before but when looking at the user "feedback", oh it should be something especial, I guess (never thought MS was such a horrible GUI developer :D).

Anyhow, there "was" another team of cool dudes who closely followed "Apple Philosophy" who were devoted in giving Ubuntu users the ability to convert the Ubuntu Linux OS into a Mac OSX desktop and they were known as the "Elementary desktop team". They had few applications (web browser, e-mail client, etc), customized Nautilus version of their own  + a theme (for which they're quite famous), etc. 

Now the reason that I put "were" and "was" not because they're dead or anything ;-), but sometime ago they decided to start an OS (based on Ubuntu of course) rather than sitting in their Launchpad page (they still do though), which recently became known as the Elementary OS!.

As said, in all of their apps and themes, they make sure to carry a certain identity which resembles a certain GUI ... which is closely related to Apple thus all of their programs will comes with a highly simplified GUI, loads fast (thanks to little features, etc), easy to use and look awesome as well.

Anyhow, for their upcoming OS version named Luna, they have few new applications that are still developing at the moment. One in particular was a multimedia player that resembles the iTunes (is it called?? :)), few weeks ago the developers showed-off the original mock-up and named it Beatbox.  

To be honest I never thought this will happen any time sooner, but did you know that two days ago they actually released the first ever version of Beatbox music player 0.1 for Ubuntu! and the main developer is Scott Ringwelski (pretty cool app dude, nice).

Main features...

*. Highly simplified interface.

*. Library and smart play-list support (playing similar songs, manually add a folder or add the entire HDD, or drag-n-drop to manually add files, etc).

*. Equalizer (save, edit, create, disable, etc) with automatic preset changing according to song genre! (awesome :D).

*. Not just audio, but it can play videos, although I'm not entirely sure but I think it's based on the Gstreamer framework. 

*. Tag editing

*. Three main views (album with art, simple GUI with a playlist and a more advanced window with songs are arranged in genre, etc). 

*. Last FM integration (automatic album art fetching, etc).

*. Play, shuffle and queue.

*. Rate multimedia files.

Let me quote the original developer here which explains why it looks so simple and doesn't even have a menu-bar!...
"... the most important part in my opinion is BeatBox's great speed, simplicity, and looks."

That's exactly what it does!. For instance in comparison with the Banshee, Beatbox launch itself pretty fast nonetheless. But then again, there aren't that many features which should help it to maintain a low profile, I guess.

Anyhow, you can install Beatbox 0.1 in Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal and 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot by using the below commands in your Terminal.
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:sgringwe/beatbox

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:elementaryart/elementarydesktop

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install beatbox

The reason for the latter PPA (elementary desktop) is because Beatbox has a dependency called sqlheavy (programming library) which is can be installed thorough the Elementary desktop PPA. The player is very small in size (about 300+ kb) and doesn't require any other dependencies.

Although they've just released it and some features such as device synchronization, online music store, powerful tag-editing, etc are yet to come according to the developer.

But the rest assured, for its first ever appearance I did not encounter any errors while using and it was very stable and quite fast for which the developers do deserve some credit. Excellent stuff, well done dude. Enjoy!. 

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