General Launchpad thoughts

I continue my tips regarding OS X Lion. As I said in my OS X Lion walkthrough, Lion come with a very iOS-ish application launcher : Launchpad. Out of the box, it is automatically populated with every application you have and application you download from the Mac App Store are added there too.
Although I keep on thinking it is a useless feature for power users, newcomers will surely find this useful, and it will help switchers to find their applications. As I was cleaning my machine I tried to rearrange Launchpad by making folders and then I discovered that you can't easily remove a shortcut to an application (except the ones coming from the Mac App Store which are uninstalled when you remove their icons).

Let me remove things !

By digging around, I found that Launchpad stores its preferences in a SQLite database, that you can explore and manipulate using the sqlite3 command line program.
Please notice that the steps described here might make your Launchpad unusable, so please backup every file you change in case something goes wrong !

Update ! Easy technique, use Launchpad-Control which is a preference pane allowing to visually hide / show icons on Launchpad. I detail here the step involved for the records.

Launch a terminal, and execute the following command, you'll get a list of the icons Launchpad shows you. Read or use grep to find the one you want to remove (in my case it was akamai uninstaller shortcut)

sqlite3 ~/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/*.db 'select * from apps;'    
[...]
48|uninstall|com.akamai.euc_uninstall_mac|||298505501.0|book?
49|Livre des polices|com.apple.FontBook||4|328036648.0|bookt
50|Fraise|org.fraise.Fraise|||332837534.0|bookp
[...]

Please notice the number at the beginning of the line you are interested in, by executing the following command, you will remove the line and the icon you want from Launchpad (changes are visible after a Dock relaunch...). In my case, the number was 48, so the command looks like :

sqlite3 ~/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/*.db 'delete from apps where item_id=48;'    
killall Dock

After Dock.app is finally back, if you enter Launchpad you will notice that the ugly icon is gone !

Technical notice

For the geeky there, the table structure is the following :
CREATE TABLE apps (item_id INTEGER PRIMARY KEY, title VARCHAR, bundleid VARCHAR, 
                   storeid VARCHAR,category_id INTEGER, moddate REAL, bookmark BLOB);
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