Introduction videos for Haiku

Hi all,

I’m new to the community and only finally got around to trying out Haiku today. Looks and feels great, and has many UI and architectural features I like.

I was thinking of creating a few short and snappy intro videos and put them on my YouTube channel, as there aren’t many recent videos on Haiku, and those that do exist aren’t great (as far as I have found, anyway).

Before I did that though, I was wondering if anyone had a list of videos they wanted creating? I thought I may as well kill two birds with one stone, and help out the community.

If not, let me know and I’ll have a go at creating a few new intro/cool-features videos and will publish them.

Keep up the good work.




yes great idea…
maybe you get rich or famous?

why not try it!

Ha! Doubt I will get rich or famous from this, but happy to have a go.

Hi Adam, nice to see new members interested in contributing. The idea is good, but from experience you should before you do this, first deal with the system in detail, so at the end no false information in the videos are included.

Ok some ideas:

  • First steps in Haiku (Desktop functions, Settings, Changing of fonts, icons size …)
  • Mounting of images and hard disks
  • Describe programs

There are so much. Have fun

** You can take a look at my “Fist Steps in Haiku script”:

Cool sounds good. I think one of my first ones will be to highlight things on the desktop that are a pain in mac/windows, then show application stacking and tiling. Also virtual desktops were removed (or rather, hidden away) in Mac OS X. Having them in Haiku is great. Another about metadata, indexing, and query would be a good comparison too.

I’m reading through the user documentation to get as many features learnt as possible before I write a video. I think the latest video I saw on YouTube, the guy was saying “Well there’s a feature, not sure how to use it, kinda here somewhere…” - not exactly inspiring.

I think one on creating a VM for Haiku would be good. Another maybe as an add on to get a Haiku dev machine set up.

Please keep suggestions coming.


Mission Control and click on the +. It’s not especially hidden. It’s actually pretty easy.

Sorry I should have been more specific. I liked setting up my desktops in a particular way. IIRC with one OS X update I could only have one row of virtual desktops, rather than say a 3x2 grid.

Another update made any background changes the same across all virtual desktops. Those two settings I think can only be changed in the command line. Luckily, I always backup to Time Machine and migrate my profile, so it’s stayed with me.

Still not the way I prefer to work though. Although I’m the first to admit that I’m rather picky.

Also will add as a Mac fan that if you have a trackpad, you can switch between spaces with a three-finger swipe (or do control + arrow key to move around them). They’re dynamic, so spaces can be added or removed as needed. This change happened when Mission Control was introduced in Lion, combining Spaces from Leopard with Exposè from Panther.

So, it’s not really that hidden. :slight_smile:

I too plan to do videos on Be/Haiku (and the Mac, Palm, etc.) sometime soon, and noticed the same thing you did (that the random Haiku vids weren’t that good), so we have the same vision! I wish you the best of luck with your series and that you get plenty of subscribers!

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Nice introductory videos are highly appreciated!
We have a few videos rather well hidden on the website at Haiku Movies | Haiku Project

Most of them are from GCI students. They also created videos on how to set up Haiku in various virtual machines. Those are linked from the Virtualizing Guides of each.

At one time I planned to do short videos myself - Haiku Quick Clips (HQC) - but I found out, that I’m just unable to narrate those demos well… :slight_smile:
I even have a nice logo + background (modified Mixed Leaves in 1280x720):


I can make the WonderBrush file available, should you be interested…

I also made a list of possible topics:

1. First Steps

1.1 The Deskbar
- Position
- Tray
- Mount settings (also from Tracker)
- Deskbar preferences
- Applications/Demos/Desktop applets/Preferences
- List of running apps (icons)

1.2 The Tracker
- Mount settings (also from Deskbar)
- Tracker preferences
- The Tracker Window (menus, icon views, icon positioning (with ALT), attributes)
- Normal: every folder associated with its window (icon views, attributes, window size, auto-close with OPT)
- Single-window browsing (icon views?)

1.3 VIP: Very Important Preferences
- Keymap (ALT/CTRL)
- Time
- Locale
- Mouse/Touchpad
- Shortcuts
- Appearance

1.4 Going Online
- Network preferences (fixed, DHCP)
- NetworkStatus
- Connecting to Wifi

2. Window Management

2.1 The Window
- Quit, Zoom button
- Resizing corner
- Clicking left/right/double/+shift on tab or border
- Moving/resizing with keycombo ALT+CTRL plus left/right mousebutton
- DefaultTrackerTemplate (size, attributes)

2.2 Stack & Tile
- Stacking
- Tiling

2.3 Workspaces
- Desktop applet
- Keycombos
- Backgrounds, Screen prefs for different images and resolutions

3. File System Hierarchy
- system
- home

4. Filetypes and Attributes
- Global FileTypes preferences
- Bookmarks as example for files with attributes
- People as example for files with attributes
- “Kidnapping” the META:url attribute (compare a Web±downloaded zip to a QupZilla one)
- listattr/addattr/rmattr in Terminal

5. Queries
- Find window (by name, attribute, formula)
- DefaultQueryTemplates

6. Translators

7. Bundled Applications
7.1 Web+
7.2 Vision
7.3 Icon-O-Matic
7.4 WonderBrush

8. Misc
8.1 HaikuPorter
- Cloning haikuporter and haikuports
- Configuring haikuporter
- Building a package

Not sure how you plan to work on this, but I’d be interested to help with reading through your script before you start recording an episode etc.


That’s an awesome set of resources, thanks! I’ll definitely take a copy of the image please.

I’ll start with something simple, maybe a comparison of windows and os x annoyances that Haiku fixes. Then I’ll start looking at topic specific videos. Eg Haiku for Web and mail users, Haiku for developers, that sort of thing.

After I warm up with those basic ones I can try the list that you have.

I’d welcome a review of the scripts, so thanks for the offer!

Not sure when I’ll get chance this week, maybe Friday or the weekend.

No hurry. I’d expect for good results it’ll take you quite some time for preparation and then all those takes to get it right… :slight_smile:

The WonderBrush files, plus the used font “Cuprun” can be downloaded at

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OK I have a few thoughts around videos… I’m not saying the below are the only video ideas that would work, but they are the ones I think I’ll personally start on, unless there’s any obvious no brainer problems anyone sees with the concept…


  • Current videos are either out of date, very long, or not written by people who have spent a lot of time using Haiku
  • Currently the community is small, and we’d all like more people to discover Haiku and how its UI works
  • There are many good things about the OS to mention, some obvious, some not so obvious, for new users
  • Social media publishing works better with short, targeted, and slick produced videos, to capture interest and encourage sharing

My conclusion is that before I work on detailed UI tutorials, I should first concentrate on a series of introductory shorts - using these as hooks to get people interested in Haiku.

As a Sales Engineer, I like the old adage “A customer not only needs your product, they need to know that they need your product” (Crossing the Chasm, IIRC). I thought therefore that we need to take something a person just takes as “a fact of modern computing, a mere niggle, that they think is just par for the course” and let them know that ThereIsAnotherWay[tm].

I also think being quite provocative and showing bad UX in Mac, Windows, and Ubuntu is no bad thing. Indeed I may lead with that in some videos.

From my own personal list of pet peeves (I am a picky b***ard, I admit), this gives me a few video ideas - listing the niggle in others’ OS, then showing Haiku as the solution:-

  • Fitting everything on one screen is a pain -> Multiple Workspaces, workspace app
  • Finding the right open window is a pain -> Deskbar & Tray, stacking, Twitcher, named windows in workspaces (also separate background images on each workspace for ease of identification
  • Organising all the info I need on one screen is fiddly -> Stacking, Snapping windows to corners of the screen, tiling
  • Opening up an app just to find one piece of often used info is laborious -> Replicants
  • Finding things - slow, missing files, confusing results -> Everything has metadata, showing mail as just another folder with metadata showing in the search results pane so you don’t have to open the app, also show favourites folders
  • Waiting for my computer to load/process eats my productivity -> Haiku built for modern hardware, lean, mean, productive machine, just like the prose style it’s named after
  • Clickety click, click, click, yet another click, takes a long time -> Existing OOTB shortcut keys, and keymaps for speed
  • Expensive app stores or hard to install apps -> Haiku Depot, installation of dependencies, updates, and suggested apps
  • Figuring out where your hard disk space went is hard, or you have to use expensive tools -> DiskUsage app OOTB
  • Fave apps for different tasks results in one massive start bar, with cramped icons -> Launch Box, keymap shortcuts

I believe these core intro videos should focus on the core OOTB apps only. i.e. not things like the Launcher, which although amazing, require specific installation. (They can be part of a ‘featured apps’ series.) My reasoning is that the features listed in shorts should be immediately available to the user post-installation with a default install.

Ideally each video should be less than a minute long, and have all ‘dead air’ trimmed out of them. This way, having them show in a twitter feed may keep interest for long enough to watch the whole video, then be tempted enough to click the ‘find out more’ link. Ideally each video would close with a “Problem solved with Haiku” (or similar slogan. Suggestions?) fade out with a nice Haiku background image and a URL to the website, and so on.

The other advantage of shorts of course is that they’re quicker to produce, and I can create more of them quicker.

Please do let me know your thoughts and if you think I’m on crack or not. The above are just my personal thoughts, and I do of course realise there is a need for multiple video series. (One on Apps, one on Tutorials, one a longer single video intro to the OS that may comprise all of the above, and so on).


Aside from customers, a series for new developers would be good too: It could show an intro to Haiku’s developer tools; how to read an application’s code; how to use Haikuporter to port an app; how to code a native Haiku app; Just the basics would be enough to generate interest:

“A developer not only needs your product, they need to know that they need to develop for your product”

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Absolutely. 1 minute might be a bit too short when adding intro/extro, but I agree on keeping it short (under 2 minutes?).

A good idea in general. However, I would suggest being subtle about it. Don’t bluntly state “Windows is sooo useless in that regard, OMG…”, but just state the niggle and people will recognize it. Like “You often open a folder full of files and waste a lot of time finding the one you need? Haiku has so-called “type-ahead filtering”. Here’s how that works…”.

That filtering is BTW one of my favourites that I miss sorely on any other OS. You can add it to your list. :slight_smile:


  • CTRL+ALT+LMB to move, +RMB to resize windows
  • RMB to send a window to the back
  • Drill-down navigation by right-clicking, esp. handy when you have a file on the Desktop, but the icon’s obscured by windows.
  • On other OS, sometimes an app blocks for some time (e.g. at work I have an app that regularly takes over 10 secs to save a large project). In that time you can’t resize or minimize the app. In Haiku it’s multi-threading makes that possible. The app itself would still block, but the window controls still work.

My favourite after the latest spam attacks on the IRC channel is:

Haiku is doing.
Sun is not doing. Haiku is doing.
Moon is not doing. Haiku is doing.
– Killed (Sigyn (Spam is off topic on freenode.))

Just joking! :wink:
I’m looking forward to your first video!

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Oooh yeah the trying to exactly position your mouse to the corner/edge of a window is a pig. Definitely putting that in there!

App blocking is also a very good one… Will have to try and figure out a demo for that.

I agree about the subtlety. I was thinking along the same lines - so say what the problem is (not mentioning the OS), but the video is of that troublesome OS to highlight the problem. Then the solution is all within Haiku.

I’ll create a (low quality!) draft and see how it comes across.

You could start by using the Haiku quick tour?!

btw… don’t forget the shortcut alt+w to close a full screen screenshot window in Haiku-Depot…

yes me too

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I like the idea of videos on Haiku. I also think it’s something that is missing. Going through the basics, showing how some specific features work and why they are cool and useful.

One video doing a visual tour to HaikuDepot and some of the best applications available (eye candy and stable ones).

Showing some third-party software that is stable enough to be used to get some work done. Showing how Haiku native apps can be created (for potential new developers), like a short demonstration of how to program a haiku GUI “Hello World” app.

I would definitely add a feature on Shortcuts and telated third party apps like QuickLaunch or Einsteinium, that combined allow, in my opinion, to achieve a much more pleasant user experience.

I must say that coming from macOS, in Haiku I miss Mission Control, and more specifically the old Exposé feature. The ability to quick show all windows with their content and switch between them, just to switch apps or even to move stuff around by dragging and dropping between different windows and/or the desktop.

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I hate hello world examples :wink:

If a gui tutorial Video, then please something like a window with a Button and a displayed Image.

The most ones who want to develop on haiku are not newbees. And hello world are the part of every book about c and cpp.

Apo questions are often.


Of course :slight_smile:

The Paladin IDE has a template for a GUI Window project - actually two. One with a menu, one without. There’s no button or image there at the moment though. (Although I definitely intend to extend some templates to be samples that include more of this type of functionality).

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