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Preview of X Windows Eye Candy 462

Posted by Zonk
from the pet-the-penguin dept.
glenkim writes "Remember Seth Nickell's blog entry about next generation X Window rendering? Well, in case you were wondering what it would look like, he's updated his blog with videos of luminocity, the experimental GNOME window manager, and screenshots of programatically themed widgets." From the post: "The wobbly window effect is mildly addictive. Kristian hasn't gotten much work done since he wrote it. He (and now I) spends all day moving windows around and watching them settle."
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Preview of X Windows Eye Candy

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  • Pleasantly surprised (Score:5, Interesting)

    by squiggleslash (241428) * on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:38AM (#12034728) Homepage Journal
    There's some nice ideas in there, and some not so nice ones. The wobbly windows thing looks completely unnecessary (worse still, I get it for free when I try to drag opaque windows on a slow machine ;-), and it's hard to see how it can actually improve usability.

    On the other hand, the similar effect applied to drop down menus did make some sense. It made the menu appearing more obvious and anyone glancing at an unrelated part of the screen and accidentally activating the menu would be more aware of their mistake with this kind of heavily animated approach. It also looked like it wouldn't get in the way, the way it was implemented.

    I also liked the translucent file selector. That's the first time I've seen translucency done in a relevant, useful, manner. Yes, I do want to see the window underneath, damn it! Combined with Apple's "attaching selectors to the window they came from" philosophy, you could have quite a massive improvement in usability.

    It's nice to see some of the techniques developed largely as eye-candy actually find uses where they have functional, not just subjectively aesthetic, justification.

    • by 10Ghz (453478) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:46AM (#12034785)
      There's some nice ideas in there, and some not so nice ones. The wobbly windows thing looks completely unnecessary (worse still, I get it for free when I try to drag opaque windows on a slow machine ;-), and it's hard to see how it can actually improve usability.


      It's not meant to improve usability. It's meant to look good and show what the tech is capable of. And I think it achieves both goals quite well.
      • by squiggleslash (241428) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:16AM (#12034988) Homepage Journal
        Well, my counter to that is it most certainly should be meant to improve usability. I know that Seth's reason for posting the article is to say "Wheee! Look at this, look at what we can do!", but without context "what we can do" is useless. The context here is that the techniques are designed to improve UIs in various ways.

        While a lot of Slashdotters and other geeks find a lot of pleasure in eye-candy without regard to usability, I think it's refreshing that Seth actually did post some examples of techniques used where they had an intuitively obvious improvement on usability. If he hadn't, I'd have ignored the demonstrations, or even flamed them. If everything had been like the initial wobbly windows effect, I'd have put it down as yet another thing that'll pointlessly bloat applications in a year or two in order to satisfy the "Ooo look, pretty colours!" mob.

        Context is important. You can't really demonstrate a technique without showing that it's potentially useful. I think Seth, for the most part, wobbly windows aside, did a great job doing just that.

        • by russellh (547685)
          I pronounce it an artistic interpretation and therefore kewl unto itself. it needs no additional justification.
        • by bankman (136859) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @01:36PM (#12037611) Homepage
          You can't really demonstrate a technique without showing that it's potentially useful.

          Why not? I can come up with some technology that I think is cool but has no obvious (to me) usabilty. Then you come along with an idea to use it. It's not like every inventor also figures out the inventions final use.

        • by the quick brown fox (681969) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @01:38PM (#12037639)
          I'd have put it down as yet another thing that'll pointlessly bloat applications in a year or two in order to satisfy the "Ooo look, pretty colours!" mob.

          We prefer to be called "Mac users", thankyouverymuch.

    • by Sunspire (784352) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:51AM (#12034818)
      The current Luminocity effects are strictly tech-demos for now, basically showing what is possible. It will then be up to third parties like distributors and desktop environment to make something useful out of it.

      The plan is to eventually merge the Luminocity composition manager and effect engine with the Metacity window manager. You will then be able to switch effects and behaviors like you do themes today.
    • by JPelorat (5320) * on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:01AM (#12034884)
      Site is borked now, but they did say something like they turned the effect all the way up so it would be obvious in the video, but that it looked much better and much more natural when it just barely bounced when moved.
    • by vdboor (827057) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:21AM (#12035037) Homepage
      The wobbly windows thing looks completely unnecessary [..], and it's hard to see how it can actually improve usability.

      Humans visualize a lot of 3D, so why not your windows? I can image computer-illiterates don't see "windows", just a bunch of 2D buttons and mess at a computer screen.

      Using subtile animation and shadow effects could make computing a lot easier and accessable. It allows users to distinguish between front and back windows much easier. I would certainly welcome these features if they're stable!

    • Improved usability should not be an ultimate goal.

      Usability is just one of the components of the overall user experience, and improving the overall user experience is what really counts.
      • IMHO, this mentality is exactly why it has taken Linux distributions so long to become a major player in the desktop market.

        Focusing almost exclusively on more functionality, more applications, more uses rather than starting with making the basic desktop experience a good one has set Linux acceptance, by the general public, back a few steps.

        For example, take 3 basic applications (e.g. a browser, an email client, a word processor) within any of the windowing environments and make them work perfectly. I do
      • In the past, "eye-candy" proved quite essential for future improvements of usability. Think of anti-aliased fonts, subpixel rendering or further in the past (Windoze 3.1) "3D-effect" buttons and borders, which kept a then-average 386/33 box as busy as shadows and translucency do on current hardware but allowed easier recognition of GUI functions.

        Shadowed and alpha-transparent widgets and dialogs will certainly improve usability a lot. Maybe in the future we won't need menus or toolbars at all, as document

  • CoralCDN [mirror] (Score:5, Informative)

    by danalien (545655) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:41AM (#12034744) Homepage
    http://www.gnome.org.nyud.net:8090/~seth/blog/xsho ts [nyud.net]

    ... I'm just guessing this might get slashdotted...

  • by NickHydroxide (870424) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:45AM (#12034775)
    I agree, a lot of these implementations are kind of nifty, but not particularly useful. I looked around but couldn't find any information about how resource-intensive this is.

    It seems like part of a loose trend towards bloating Linux for the desktop market. Not that this is a bad thing, but something that should be kept in mind.
    • by natrius (642724) * <niranNO@SPAMniran.org> on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:49AM (#12034805) Homepage
      From the site:
      People have been asking what sort of hardware this was done on. Videos were shot on a mix of an IBM thinkpad X30 (with a paltry Intel i830 video card using open source drivers) and an IBM thinkpad T41 (with a slightly beefier but still pretty old Radeon Mobility 7500, also using open source drivers). Everything we're doing so far is light on hardware requirements.

      On the topic of usefulness, that's not really what I think these videos are supposed to show. The point is that we now have the foundation to do useful things with.
    • by 10Ghz (453478) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:50AM (#12034811)
      I agree, a lot of these implementations are kind of nifty, but not particularly useful. I looked around but couldn't find any information about how resource-intensive this is.


      The demos in the website run on either Intel integrated vidcard, or on Ati Mobility Radeon 7500 (both with open-source drivers). Bot are very low-end vid-cards these days.

      It seems like part of a loose trend towards bloating Linux for the desktop market.


      What "bloat" are you talking about? It seems to me that both major desktops (KDE and Gnome) are getting faster and less memory-hungry with each new release. So I REALLY fail to see your point. But if you are worried about bloet, simply don't enable any of the new features, or use XFCE or something similar! Problem solved! Me? I have vid-card, CPU and memory to spare, bring on the advanced features!
      • What kind of tiny laptop is that in the video?

        Can you get them with nVidia cards?
    • You have a good point. it's always worth keeping in mind how much bloat things cause, and I feel safe in knowing if it's in linux, it'll be ultra configurable, and can be turned off easily by those who don't want it.

      Which to me is a far better solution than that of many who would discard high-level features that are a real benefit to a few, for the excuse that you can do the same thing with a little extra thinking and a little extra work.

      That completely undermines the purpose of buying a computer for tho
    • Hopefully it wont be hard coded in. If its anything like kde is with disabling eye candy, i'l be very happy.
    • Uh Expose? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by bogie (31020) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:04AM (#12034915) Journal
      Luminosity is a testbed for technology. It's not meant to show exactly what Gnome 2.12 or X whatever is going to look like.

      You say its not useful but what about something like Expose which many users think is useful? Imagine how boring the early versions of it looked which did nothing interesting or useful? Think outside the box for a minute and realize that by using the technology someone may come up with some new ways of interacting with windows that nobody has ever thought of and turns out to be really useful. Your boring and bloated accusation is way close-minded and short-sighted.
    • by dogas (312359) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:06AM (#12034925) Homepage
      No dude, if you use linux, you're gonna be forced to have wobbly windows and put up with the low-end hardware accelerated bloat.

      Geez... I saw the videos and it looks pretty sweet! If it's going to make my windows friends jealous, I'm on board. Will I use it on my linux desktop? You bet. Will I load it on my linux router? Uh, no.

  • heh.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Quixote (154172) * on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:46AM (#12034780) Homepage Journal
    The wobbly window effect is mildly addictive.

    Wait till you see the "wobbly server effect"...

  • by althalus1969 (680826) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:46AM (#12034781)
    Linking to "X Window Eye Candy" Videos on the ./ Frontpage...that's like posting free porn.
    You people are crazy. That poor server...
  • Already (Score:4, Informative)

    by cheezemonkhai (638797) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:47AM (#12034794) Homepage
    Appears to be down or at least struggling already :(

    Mirrordot should hopefully be created here:

    Mirrordot link [mirrordot.org]
  • xgl (Score:5, Informative)

    by elmartinos (228710) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:51AM (#12034816) Homepage
    Yesterday I have tried Xgl, Which also uses OpenGL to draw X. I think Luminocity and xgl are tightly related, but I am not really shure.

    Anyway, what I got was a stable desktop with nice shadow and transparency features. It looks totally cool to have a transparent mplayer behind a transparent xterm that drops a soft shadow on it :-)

    Trying it out is fairly easy, just follow this description [gentoo.org].
  • Nip it in the bud (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Morganth (137341) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:51AM (#12034820) Journal
    I just want to pre-emptively respond to all the posts that are going to say, 'well, as usual, Linux is catching up to Microsoft and Apple a couple years after the fact.'

    Yes, you may be right. But the difference is that Linux doesn't have to be first, it just has to be better. And it will be. The rich base of command line utilities and a solid kernel are necessary to have great degrees of stability and richness at the higher levels (like an X server). I find my Linux base indispensable (from the point of view of the usefulness and scriptability of all the UNIX tools and primitives), and I think I concord with other Linux users when I say I'd be perfectly happy with my free Linux desktop when it 'catches up' in the less useful things like eye candy and hardware rendering. Because in the end, I'll have a Free, Powerful Desktop that Looks Just As Good As Yours, while you may be stuck with a good-looking, but still proprietary, mess of a system that is still sorely weak in the basics.

    Just my two cents... but undoubtedly in the time it took me to write this post, it will no longer be pre-emptive.
    • Re:Nip it in the bud (Score:3, Interesting)

      by 10Ghz (453478)
      I just want to pre-emptively respond to all the posts that are going to say, 'well, as usual, Linux is catching up to Microsoft and Apple a couple years after the fact.'


      Apple, perhaps, but not Microsoft. Longhorn will have something like this, but Longhorn is still over a year away (at least). It might very well be that this technology will become available on Linux long before Longhorn ships. In that case, Microsoft would be catching up to Linux ;).
    • Hmm, my X windows has recently become less stable than the winME laptop I sometimes use. Ever since enabling Xinerama I've found it will occasionally lock up for long periods. And it still loses the mouse input quite frequently, requiring a VT switch to get it working again.
    • by BenjyD (316700) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:15AM (#12034984)
      A second pre-emptive comment:

      1) It's a tech demo. Nobody is suggesting wobbly windows are going to improve productivity. Given a wide range of possible effects like this, however, creative people can come up with nice ideas to make your desktop more usable. Decoupling the screen display and window contents rendering allows all sorts of cool things.

      2) It runs on old crappy hardware, so no, you won't need to go and buy an Nvidia 69999FX-eXtreme to run it

      3) It's not 'bloat' (whatever that is), it's just using the hardware and X-server abilities to their full. By shifting much of the rendering to the graphics card, you could actually lower CPU usage. I'm sure a thousand openbox/console/ion/ratpoison users are waiting to post "I don't need this". To which I say "well go back to your teletype then".
      • How about instead of just being able to store windows as bars, let us morph our windows into a sphere which rotates? or a cube? This would allow us to store more windows in less space, it would allow us to have more screen space. No one needs a big bar taking up the bottom of their screen, but spheres floating around looks better and its better for productivity. Think of terminator 2's morphing scene, that could be done to the windows.
    • ...mess of a system that is still sorely weak in the basics.

      Apparently you haven't looked at Mac OS X recently. It has the same "rich base" of command line utils and solid kernel that you claim for Linux. With the additional advantage that "things just work".

      I use both Linux and Mac OS X. Right now, I find that, although both have roughly similar capabilites, the Mac gives me a far superior user experience.

      • by rpdillon (715137)
        Not to disgaree (I love Macs), but the cost of "just working" in almost all the cases is a lack of customization. What makes Linux such a difficult platform for folks that are new to it is that Linux exists only in our minds, and actually manifests itself as 1000 different distributions, each just different enough from each other to cause problems with interoperability. Combine this with the vast amount of customization within each distribution (including lots of variables, like IF something is installed
    • You seem to assume that Apple will rest on their laurels. Recent additions include such things as core image and core video which is quite a leap forward.

      www.apple.com/macosx/tiger/coreimage.html

      Also, it's not just about how things appear on screen, but how it all works underneath and also how it is being used by application developers.

      What gives OSX a lead in the GUI department is the Cocoa Framework and programming model, associated development tools and consistent use of interface design guidelines.

      I
    • by node 3 (115640)
      You mean, you want to pre-empt a "my OS is better than yours." post with a "my OS is better than yours (well, will be 'in the end')," post?

      The rich base of command line utilities and a solid kernel are necessary to have great degrees of stability and richness at the higher levels (like an X server). I find my Linux base indispensable (from the point of view of the usefulness and scriptability of all the UNIX tools and primitives),

      How is this different than OS X, except that OS X's GUI is more advanced,
  • "The wobbly window effect is mildly addictive. Kristian hasn't gotten much work done since he wrote it. He (and now I) spends all day moving windows around and watching them settle."

    Yeah, this is great becasue as millions of Microsoft customers have proven, less productivity from the same hardware is good.
    • For fucks sake (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      It's a demo supposed to show what the technologie is capable of. That's all there is to it.

      It's not supposed to be the default way of handling windows in metacity, it's not supposed to improve usabiltiy, it is only supposed to show what the new technology can do.
  • KDE equivalent? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ttys00 (235472) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:52AM (#12034834)
    For those of us who don't know, is there a KDE equivalent in the pipeline?
    • Re:KDE equivalent? (Score:5, Informative)

      by 10Ghz (453478) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:59AM (#12034868)
      KDE4 will propably have stuff like this. It should have double-buffered widgets, OpenGL-acceleration and Cairo-support, among other things.
      • Re:KDE equivalent? (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        It should have double-buffered widgets, OpenGL-acceleration and Cairo-support, among other things.

        Well, more specifically, Qt 4 will have those things, and KDE 4 will have them too because it will use Qt 4.

        • Re:KDE equivalent? (Score:4, Interesting)

          by IamTheRealMike (537420) <mike@plan99.net> on Thursday March 24, 2005 @12:06PM (#12036647) Homepage
          Even more specifically Qt isn't using Cairo, it's using its own equivalent TrollTech are writing from scratch (because they have to own the copyright on all the Qt code for their business model to work). However everything below Cairo and GTK+ is independent of GNOME/GTK+ and will work fine for KDE.
          • Re:KDE equivalent? (Score:3, Informative)

            by nitehorse (58425)
            That's not true, actually.

            If Cairo had been developed, ready, and stable before Trolltech had started developing Qt4, then they would most likely have included support for it. Cairo even today still isn't stable. To quote Carl Worth [freedesktop.org]:

            If someone is crazy enough to think cairo belongs in a platform as stable software, right now, then I'll just go break some more APIs just to prove them wrong.

            Keep in mind, Qt4 has been in development for quite a while now. They were showing off some crazy early development

    • Re:KDE equivalent? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by nutshell42 (557890)
      I don't know about wobbly windows but KDE 3.4 offers some addictive transparency options based on the composite extension (kcontrol->desktop->window behaviour->transparency). I'm getting timeouts on the article so I can't tell you more until I know what that article is all about. =)
    • GAAAH! WHY would you want there to be a "KDE eqivalent?" WHY can't KDE just use the same one??!!
  • Longhorn (Score:4, Interesting)

    by alienfluid (677872) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @08:56AM (#12034851) Homepage
    How does this compare to the upcoming Avalon engine for Longhorn?
    • Re:Longhorn (Score:2, Informative)

      by ardor (673957)
      Better. The effects are very similar to Longhorn eyecandy, but the costs are much lower. Note that he does all that stuff on an old Intel graphics chip. Longhorn requires much more GPU power.
    • Re:Longhorn (Score:5, Informative)

      by karstux (681641) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:40AM (#12035188) Homepage
      Different thing. Avalon is an API which seems to be geared to bringing 3d-accelerated features to ordinary desktop programs, and to make this easy for the programmer. For example, in Avalon you can create a window, a rendering context and a simple scene with very few lines of code.

      I guess you could use Avalon to create effects as shown in TFA. But it's really not limited to that.

      In the end it's all about eye-candy though.. :-)
  • I did enable Composite in Fedora Core 3 (+xorg from rawhide) but somehow applications think Damage and XFixes aren't there and xdpyinfo seems to agree even though according to the logfiles they *are* present and *do* get initialized. Does anyone have an idea what the problem might be? xcompmgr and luminocity refuse to run without these extensions.
  • nice new features (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mrmagos (783752) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:01AM (#12034883) Homepage
    Those are some interesting new features, quite innovative actually. However, I would be much more interested in hearing how X is being made smaller and faster. Xserver [freedesktop.org] seems to be a nice continuation of Kdrive [jussieu.fr] since the fork, but it is still lagging behind a full Xorg installation. Most X users are not serving up desktops to thin clients, and only need a full install for things like hardware acceleration and multihead support. I would think a small and fast X would greatly benefit desktop adoption, and if any of you have tried Kdrive on modern equipment, it more than feels snappier, it is.
  • ... I'd be happy just finding a theme for Metacity that would work well in 800x600. My old Dell LS400 only does 800x600 and when running Linux, the buttons are HUGE and everything is drawn too big.

    Still, I'll give this a try :) I'm a sucker for stuff like this.
    • My old Dell LS400 only does 800x600 and when running Linux, the buttons are HUGE and everything is drawn too big.

      GTK in general isn't very frugal when it comes to space, but I think that's a good thing. The large icons are pretty helpful in general. However, it sucks under low resolutions, and when you use GTK in Windows, things tend to look pretty ugly since huge buttons with icons are in a sea of small, text only buttons. To help a little in Gnome, go to Menu and Toolbar Preferences and set the toolbar
  • nice, but (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ardor (673957) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:02AM (#12034890)
    he should create a video showing this wobbling effect used decently, rather than exaggerated. I'm inclined to believe him when he says that this movement is pleasant to the eye (actually, the sudden appearance of menus and windows seems to irritate new users whose brain is not used to this).

    The translucency is done very very well. As mentioned before, this is the first video showing how translucency can be useful.

    One might argue that this is an utter waste of resources. Well, in this is not true. Since most PCs sold after 2003 do have some sort of 3d accelerator included (hell, even the intel graphics chipsets have acceleration!), basic 3D acceleration is very cheap. Of course, there are people exaggerating the usage of 3d acceleration for the desktop. For example, there are rumors saying that Longhorn requires pixel shader support. But the consumer-level technology for basic T&L (hell, even the CPU can do this, since we aren't talking about >50k vertices) and some basic texturing without lighting or any nifty multitexturing has been around for almost a DECADE.
  • by harlemjoe (304815) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:03AM (#12034905)
    studying for finals

    imho the windows already wobble ...
  • by same_old_story (833424) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:04AM (#12034913)
    why did they record video shots from the monitor?
    excuse my ignorance: is there no video screen capture for linux?

    I mean, they did go through all this work to make something look good and then released these crappy monitor shots?

  • by houghi (78078) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:08AM (#12034936)
    Combine it with the new Enlightenment stuff:
    This one [rasterman.com]
    This one [rasterman.com]
    This one [rasterman.com]
    This one [rasterman.com]

    So who said that Linux was mainly textbased?
  • Torrent? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:09AM (#12034941)
    As often as this has happened lately, you'd think someone would be courteous enough to put up a torrent of the videos rather than blow away various project websites everytime someone posts video-candy.
  • by elucido (870205) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:17AM (#12034999)
    I think someone needs to create better themes. Coders suck as artists and as theme designers. Coders also suck at designing interfaces. We need an interface design contest now, complete with bounties. All artists should be welcomed and no programming experience should be required to contribute. I suggest we make a glass like interface, or an interface such as the interface in the Lain anime series. Lets make something impressive, also lets make it functional. How can we use the extra dimensions and power to make things work better?
    • We need an interface design contest now, complete with bounties.

      This was suggested during the recent flap about the default Gnome theme, but it was decided that it would be a better idea to wait until all the cool stuff (i.e. Cairo, Luminocity) is finished and ready to be built upon. Then people can actually use these things to do cool and functional things with.
  • by WombatControl (74685) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:27AM (#12035094)

    I know it's fashionable to bash UI eye candy, but there is a reason for it. For instance, the human eye is very good at determining depth. Drop shadows on windows help distinguish one window from another. When I turned on xcompmgr on my Ubuntu box, it was actually quite surprising how much easier it was to determine what windows are where. When you have Anjuta, Firefox, Glade, and a bunch of other applications open, it can be hard to tell what window is here. Drop shadows help create another way of visually distinguishing window placements that can enhance usability.

    Transparency when done right can also help usability. The transparent dialogs here help cement the relationship between a dialog and its parent window. That's why Mac OS X has such great usability - it not only has some visually interesting eye candy, but that eye candy is designed to provide you with a series of visual cues that clue you in on what actions you're performing. The "genie effect" when you minimize a window to the Dock is another example of this - by showing the window move into the Dock you're providing a visual clue that lets you know that you can find that window again in the Dock.

    When done right, eye candy can really enhance usability, and thanks to things like the Damage extension, the Render extension, and the Composite extenstion, Linux usability is getting better.

    And for the record, those who think that eye candy adds excessive processor bloat, my current Linux system is a Duron 600mHz with 256MB of RAM and a GeForce4 MX. Granted, the T&L engine helps a lot in making the UI responsive, but given that xcompmgr and the Composite extension is essentially beta code it's quite shocking how little processing power this sort of thing takes. Now that T&L engines on graphics cards are pretty much standard, it's time that X put that power to use to enhance usability.

  • by baker_tony (621742) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @09:38AM (#12035167) Homepage
    I went here

    http://www.illiminable.com/ogg/

    downloaded and installed, brought up Windows Media player and dragged and dropped the .ogg file on to it to play.

  • by Jerk City Troll (661616) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @10:01AM (#12035387) Homepage

    Shut the fuck up. Seriously. Every time there is an article on /. about X11 eye candy, a troop of future-shock losers come forward and start complaining about how we "don't need this" or how it's "totally useless" and other nonsense. It's called "progress" and we should talk about how we can apply this technology in interesting ways (like Apple has done with Aqua) instead of bitching about how it shouldn't even be created in the first place.

  • by Per Bothner (19354) <per@bothner.com> on Thursday March 24, 2005 @12:08PM (#12036664) Homepage

    What I'm really waiting for is easier and dynamic configuration, including true hot-plugging of displays. I want to be able to plug in a new monitor and have X recognizes it. You can dynamically resize the screen to a limited extent, but the available video sizes are still limited to what's in the xorg.conf.

    Also, why don't we have fast user switching? I want to have multiple desktops belonging to multiple users, and switch between them quickly.

    Fast user switching can be viewed as a special case of screen virtualization: Your applications are always talking to virtual server, either VNC or (better) NX. A physical display can then switch between different virual servers, multiple displays can share the same server, you can move display, or you can switch users.

    This kind of stuff is much more important than eye candy, and you'll have more of a chance to make a name for yourself.

    • KDE 3.4 has this, I don't know about earlier versions. You can start a new session right from the menu, and you can switch back and forth with Ctrl+Alt+F7 and Ctrl+Alt+F8.
    • Also, why don't we have fast user switching? I want to have multiple desktops belonging to multiple users, and switch between them quickly.

      This, we do have. It's not identical to the fast user switching that XP does, but it get the job done.

      On my Ubuntu system, Applications/System Tools/New Login gets a new login screen. I think it's basically just running another gdm (the login manager GNOME uses). Once you have two logins going at once, running this again pops up a switcher dialog; you can then choo
  • OOO OOO (Score:3, Funny)

    by Allnighterking (74212) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @12:34PM (#12036924) Homepage
    I need to start a new project called "Weeble Linux" Our motto will be

    Weeble Wobbles but it won't turn Blue"


  • X *WINDOW* system (Score:3, Informative)

    by mysticalreaper (93971) on Thursday March 24, 2005 @03:10PM (#12038793)
    This comment may be late, and my get buried, but i just wanted to correct the slashdot title for this article. (Which is strange cause /. is so reliable for facts)

    it is: X Window system
    it is not: X Windows system

    Can you see the difference? There is no s on 'window'. I know that MS has taught us all to use the word 'windows', but we should keep our heads and use the correct names for technology.

    As a reference, i will cite the X.org Website [x.org] where they make reference to the "X Window System" extensively.

    Thanks Zonk. You couldn't even copy from the submitter's words, who got it correct.

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