The Mars Approach Desktop


The Mars Approach Desktop

This Arch Linux desktop features a beautiful photo of Mars floating in the dark, but that’s not all that’s interesting about it—transparent terminal windows and resource indicators round out what’s actually a very productive setup. Here’s how to make it your own.

This desktop makes heavy use of Linux-specific widgets, so you’ll have some twisting to do if you want to make this work in Windows, but if you are running Linux (or OS X, for that matter), here’s what you’ll need:

  • The Red Planet wallpaper
  • Conky, a lightweight system monitor for Linux
  • Ncmpcpp for the music player and the visualizer in the upper left of the screen
  • Terminator for the transparent terminal windows on the desktop
  • Openbox as the window manager
  • XCompmgr for drop shadow effects and window transparency

It’s not as much as it seems, but the end-result is a beautiful terminal-like desktop that reminds me of my old Linux machine, frankly. If you love it or have questions about how to set yours up just like this, head over to the Flickr page linked below to ask your questions or sing your praises!


Do you have a good-looking, functional desktop of your own to show off? Share it with us! Post it to your personal Kinja blog using the tag Desktop Showcase or add it to our Lifehacker Desktop Show and Tell Flickr pool. Screenshots must be at least at least 1280×720 and please include information about what you used, links to your wallpaper, skins, and themes, and any other relevant details. If your awesome desktop catches our eye, you might get featured!

2015-10-23 | Flickr



Mars once had long-lived lakes, upping odds it harbored life




Imagine yourself at the shoreline of a lake. It’s a little chilly, the wind is blowing and there are no trees, grasses or other signs of vegetation. The lake itself is only several feet deep, but it is fed by a system of deltas that flow into it

The lake looks similar to something you might find in a mountain valley on Earth, but it also might be what you would have seen if you stood at the rim of the 87-mile Gale Crater on Mars more than 3 billion years ago

Forget the piddly flows of water on Mars today, billions of years ago, the red planet probably played host to streams, lakes and deltas of fresh water which likely could have supported microbial life, a new study shows Read more…

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