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Trolltech Developing Qt That Doesn't Need X
Posted by timothy on Tuesday March 21, @03:06PM
from the getting-bedded-with-embedded dept.
Thrakkerzog writes: "Here is an article about Qt/Embedded, a version of Qt which is source-compatable with Qt/X11 and Qt/Windows. It doesn't use X11, and just uses the Linux framebuffer. This is very ideal for embedded systems. Check the link for more info."

According to Trolltech's release, "Qt/Embedded will also provide functionality not found in the X Window System, such as anti-aliased text rendering and alpha-blending of images. For increased performance, Qt/Embedded can utilize hardware graphics acceleration and it is well suited for multimedia and Web applications."

Flashy graphics without the overhead of X looks like a winner for all the companies providing embedded Linux devices and sofware.

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    Trollin' for Trolltech (Score:0, Interesting)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:10PM EST (#2)
    Stuff like this is why Linux is going to take awhile (a few decades) to become a serious threat to other OS's. There is no centralized authority and people keep coming out with more and more crap to throw to the pile.
    Re:Trollin' for Trolltech (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @05:36PM EST (#108)
    one word options
    It's all about KOffice. ( Nice sarcsim ) (Score:3, Insightful)
    by Forge (forge @ myrealbox.com?Subject=Slashdot) on Tuesday March 21, @09:48PM EST (#209)
    (User Info) http://www.netcraft.com
    I wonder how many slashdot readers figured out that this poster is being sarcastic? Anyway here is my take on this new embeded QT.

    I read through the comments looking for someone who gets the real significance of this and came up with a blank. So here is my take on this baby.

    When WinCE was 1st released oneof MSs major promises was that it would let you run the same apps and exchange files in the same format on both desktop and palmtop. Basically they promised MSWord in a pocket sized version.

    It never happened and the reason is simple. MS office is over 200 megs of bloat. If they could have made it smaller they probably would but frankly that's tough to do. a 16 meg office suite and OS combination just isn't going to happen.

    fast forward to the present. portable Linux has a compressed file system almost dubbing the capacity of a flash card so all you really need is a 32 meg office suite to fit in 16 megs of flash. KOffice is normally under 30 megs with the kdelibs. add on 2 megs of QT and 400 K kernel with all the drivers for that device plus frame buffer and you are running in 16 megs of cache with an OS and an OFfice suite. add another 16 or 32 megs of RAM to run everything in and you can get decent performance plus a desktop.

    THAT is the significance of this thing. Linus plus Transmeta plus Troll Tech and the KDE team are about to deliver on Bill's promise.

    Frankly I would hate to be a microsofty right now.

    As for little issues like "dose this interface match the small size device?". They don't matter. Interfaces can be hacked and adjusted and with tidy modular code like this it doesn't really take much for good GUI designers to "fix" it.

    Isn't it surprizing how badly I spell ?
    Flamebuffer? (Score:0, Offtopic)
    by Kent Berglund (kb@rri.zzn.com) on Tuesday March 21, @03:12PM EST (#4)
    (User Info) http://www.bloomington.in.us/~kentb
    Is it possible that Qt can use this technology to
    create some underwear using linux flamebuffers to
    increase the safety of firemen everywhere?

    Thanks
    Kent
    X (Score:1, Insightful)
    by Signal 11 (signal11@mediaone.net?Subject=Slashdot comment) on Tuesday March 21, @03:13PM EST (#6)
    (User Info) http://www.malign.net/~bojay/
    You know, with so many developers trying to bypass the X APIs and write directly to the screen, one would think that X is out of date.

    There seems to be a big push to get the X protocol away from network protocols and into direct API calls. Any thoughts (maybe we could interview an X developer next week?) people?

    -o Question authority! Yeah, says who? o-

    Re:X (Score:2, Funny)
    by redhog (redhogNOSPAM@lysator.liu.se) on Tuesday March 21, @03:17PM EST (#10)
    (User Info) http://mini.dhs.org
    I think we should bypass all of the OS and program the hardware directly, as done in windows to get better single user acceleration.
    --The knowledge that you are an idiot, is what distinguishes you from one.

    The above text is covered by the GNU General Public License.
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by not Bruce Perens on Tuesday March 21, @03:26PM EST (#20)
    (User Info)
    >--The knowledge that you are an idiot, is what
    >distinguishes you from one.

    After a comment like that, I know it; do you?
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:18PM EST (#196)
    it was his sig.

    might I suggest a sig for you: "the difference between me and a fuckwit is that most fuckwits have a sense of humor."
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by penguinboy (comphelper AT yahoo DOT com) on Tuesday March 21, @03:53PM EST (#50)
    (User Info) http://home.earthlink.net/~rmedico/
    You are joking, right? This is what made NT4 so ridiculously unstable (3.51 wasn't too bad when the graphics stuff wasn't in the kernel)
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by Grimlord on Tuesday March 21, @05:13PM EST (#99)
    (User Info)
    you idiot we are not talking about ms doing it. The code is only as stable as the guy that wrote it.
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by penguinboy (comphelper AT yahoo DOT com) on Friday March 24, @08:26PM EST (#262)
    (User Info) http://home.earthlink.net/~rmedico/
    It'ss a bad idea none the less. Although it doesn't guarantee it, more low-level stuff certainly increases the chances for problems.
    Yes (Score:2)
    by redhog (redhogNOSPAM@lysator.liu.se) on Tuesday March 21, @06:22PM EST (#126)
    (User Info) http://mini.dhs.org
    Of course I was joking! I thought that was obvious! Perheaps I should have put a ;) there to guide you...
    --The knowledge that you are an idiot, is what distinguishes you from one.

    The above text is covered by the GNU General Public License.
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @04:20PM EST (#61)
    I think we should open the windows and throw you out (to get better single user acceleration).
    Re:X (Score:2, Interesting)
    by ceswiedler on Tuesday March 21, @03:23PM EST (#16)
    (User Info)
    The design of the X Server sticks to the original multiuser-server philosophy that everything runs on the server, and the client is practically nonexistent. At the time "GUI" (tm) came out, people were used to telnetting and running processes on central boxen. The X Server design maintained the status quo.

    But jesus, are we still in the days of VAX? Big servers are great and it's useful for people to share them, but everyone ALSO has a decent desktop box. Why on earth do we need our computer to talk to itself through networking calls just to render a window?

    If we're going to keep up the desktop-user push, we have to make the windowing environment better. Does anyone have any figures for how much slower the X server system is than a direct windowing API? If it's a signifigant speed issue (and I imagine it is), we're going to have to do something about it.

    How difficult would it be to abstract communication layer of the X server so that if it were running locally, it used direct calls, and if remotely, then by networking like it does now? Best of Both Worlds.
    HELP STOP PLATE TECTONICS
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by not Bruce Perens on Tuesday March 21, @03:32PM EST (#26)
    (User Info)
    You're living in the days of VAX as well, apparently...

    Believe it or not, someone (actually, quite a lot of people) already noticed that little problem! And that's why modern X implementations (go XFree86!) are hacked to take as much advantage of locality as possible without breaking the abstraction too badly.

    Even if there were a significant hit, though, abstraction would be sufficient generalization.
    Been done (Score:2, Interesting)
    by Sloppy (sloppy@spam^H^H^H^Hrt66.com) on Tuesday March 21, @03:35PM EST (#31)
    (User Info)

    How difficult would it be to abstract communication layer of the X server so that if it were running locally, it used direct calls, and if remotely, then by networking like it does now?

    Isn't that pretty much what AmiWin does, when you link it with the proper libraries?

    Why on earth do we need our computer to talk to itself through networking calls just to render a window?

    Because it's cool, and occasionally useful. Ever taken a look at the size of the market for Windoze products like Symantic PCAnyWhere or Citrix WinFrame? If your windowing system doesn't have that capability built-in, then someone's just going to have to tack it on later, anyway.

    It actually makes sense for X to have this feature. It's a good feature.


    ---
    Have a Sloppy night!
    Re:Been done (Score:1)
    by ceswiedler on Tuesday March 21, @04:12PM EST (#58)
    (User Info)
    I didn't say that we should remove the capability for X clients to run from X servers on other hosts, I said that we should also include the ability to run completely on one host without wasting any time with talking back and forth to itself.

    I don't have any complaints, personally, about how fast my Xfree86 system runs, but then I don't stress it very much. This is one of those "it shouldn't work that way!" sort of optimization-thoughts, and I'm glad to know people are already working on it.
    HELP STOP PLATE TECTONICS
    Re:Been done (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:35PM EST (#136)
    Argh! haven't any of you heard of the shared memory stuff in X? What on earth do you think MIT-SHM stands for?
    Re:Been done (Score:2)
    by Ralph Wiggam (barry@no-meat-in-a-can.summex.com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:36PM EST (#73)
    (User Info) http://www.redmeat.com
    This week the company I work for is cutting a 6 figure check to Citrix for the privledge of a capability that X has for free. Nice.

    -B
    10 PRINT "THIS IS MY SIG" 20 GOTO 10
    Re:Been done (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @11:00AM EST (#255)
    X has the capability to export Win32 applications for free? Cool! I bet everybody will be excited to hear the news!

    Re:Been done (Score:2)
    by Samrobb on Tuesday March 21, @05:24PM EST (#103)
    (User Info) http://www.pghgeeks.org
    Ever taken a look at the size of the market for Windoze products like Symantic PCAnyWhere or Citrix WinFrame? If your windowing system doesn't have that capability built-in, then someone's just going to have to tack it on later, anyway.

    I think the point is that X was designed to operate over a network, period; in hindsight, it probably would have been better to define a local display protocol that could be modified to work in a more peer-to-peer or client-server fashion as the need for that arose. There's nothing particularly wrong with "tacking on" functionality later, as long as the original specification was designed with that sort extensibility in mind.

    If that had been the case, then this discussion wouldn't be happening, because I could run X the way I want to, and you could run it the way you wanted, and we'd both be happy. As it stands right now, you get what you want, and when I try and get what I want, I get a shrug and a "Live with it - it's a good feature" reply.


    reminds me of C++ (Score:1)
    by kaisyain on Thursday March 23, @08:26AM EST (#261)
    (User Info)
    Wasn't that designed so you were only penalized for the features you actually used? I wonder how many people who are saying "live with it - it's a good feature most of the time" praise that effort in C++ and fight tooth and claw to the bitter end against mandatory inclusion of things like garbage collection, of which pretty much the same thing can be said: "live with it - it's a good feature most of the time".
    X !=> networking (Score:2, Informative)
    by john@iastate.edu on Tuesday March 21, @04:14PM EST (#59)
    (User Info)
    X servers can communicate with clients over a variety of communications channels including network streams, shared memory, and unix domain sockets, etc...


    Shut up, be happy. The conveniences you demanded are now mandatory. -- Jello Biafra

    Re:X !=> networking (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:23PM EST (#128)
    Thank you for clearing that up, it should be apparent to everyone now that the reason X is so slow is the prevalence and perdurability of cosmic radiation. Networking, sockets, and the like have nothing to do with it.
    Re:X !=> networking (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:20PM EST (#197)
    some cards have excellent support for their acceleration in Xfree. others do not. might I suggest a reasonably modern Matrox card. I've heard good things about voodoo3's X server also.
    Re:X !=> networking (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @09:54AM EST (#251)
    I have a g400 card, and i am horrified to see that win2k is MUCH faster than X in linux, running mozilla in win2k is a totaly different application than running it in linux. The same goes for netscape and wordperfect. But sure, the matrox cards are among the faster cards with xfree86. It would be fun to know how much of the lack of speed in X depends on its design, and how much is just because of unomptimized X server
    Isn't this what Direct Rendering does? (Score:1)
    by gharikumar (gharikumar@my-dejanews.com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:49PM EST (#83)
    (User Info)
    I thought this was exactly what
    Direct Rendering (included in Xfree4.0)
    does.

    Hari.
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:35PM EST (#135)
    I don't know about you, but its hella great to have an X server on my NT workstation at work and administer my beefy DEC box in the basement. I feel damn sorry for all the NT guys that have to stand directly in front of their servers for hours on end, messing up their necks in the process. X might add overhead, but its damn nice to have that capability.
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by Anonymous._.Coward (print reverse split(/ */,"moc.buprenroc\@demmahom") on Wednesday March 22, @05:57AM EST (#238)
    (User Info)
    Huh? But NT workstations and servers can be remote configured.

  • 3tech remote explorerNT
  • PC Anywhere from Compaq
  • NT Remote Controller
  • Take a seminar
  • Or visit your favourite website.
  • Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @08:04PM EST (#161)
    the sad thing is, its probably a lot more efficient to push bitmaps around the network than download, trees, lists, images, button text, grids etc. In these days of server generated forms, X rules.
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by Rakarra (rakNarraO@SpacbPellA.Mnet) on Tuesday March 21, @08:50PM EST (#184)
    (User Info)
    But jesus, are we still in the days of VAX? Big servers are great and it's useful for people to share them, but everyone ALSO has a decent desktop box.

    Again, the problem is that you're assuming everyone wants to run the X client applications FROM their desktop. To demand that would be pretty limiting.

    Why on earth do we need our computer to talk to itself through networking calls just to render a window?

    Why? Portability for one. Second, why not? Since on the local machine you don't have to use actual TCP ports to get it done, I've seen XFree86 use domain sockets instead. Is there really a huge drawback other than a "networking! *shudder*" response? You don't have to limit the server to only one method of contact.


    Take the NOSPAM out of my address if you're responding by mail..

    Re:X (Score:1)
    by twixel on Wednesday March 22, @06:13AM EST (#239)
    (User Info)
    But jesus, are we still in the days of VAX? Big servers are great and it's useful for people to share them, but everyone ALSO has a decent desktop box.Why on earth do we need our computer to talk to itself through networking calls just to render a window?
    Rest assured, it doesn't use networking calls if it is not necessary. It uses IPC (unix domain sockets ,shared memory) where possible.
    Does anyone have any figures for how much slower the X server system is than a direct windowing API? If it's a signifigant speed issue (and I imagine it is), we're going to have to do something about it.
    And how are you going to measure that? How are you going to factor out driver optimisations? BTW, what you call a direct windowing API means moving the graphics subsystem into the kernel. It would save context switches. Any other design where a separate process handles the windowing and the display, has been done: it's called X.
    How difficult would it be to abstract communication layer of the X server so that if it were running locally, it used direct calls, and if remotely, then by networking like it does now? Best of Both Worlds.
    Depends on what you mean with "direct calls". A "direct call" into a shared library to draw a window can be handled in two ways:
    • A. either your graphics subsystem is in the kernel, and the code in the shared library thunks into the kernel for the window drawing code.
    • B. Your graphics subsystem is in a separate process, and the shared library marshalls the arguments of the function call into a structure and sends that structure via IPC to the display process. (Contrary to the belief of some, you can't just call "direct" into another process)

    So there you have it: A = WinXX and B=XWindow. Take your pick. I guess moving the display subsystem into the kernel won't be very popular.
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:24PM EST (#18)
    > There seems to be a big push to get the X
    > protocol away from network protocols and into
    > direct API calls. Any thoughts (maybe we could
    > interview an X developer next week?) people?

    Have a look at NanoGUI (a mini X server) or it's twin MicroWindows (a mini Win32 API).

                        http://microwindows.censoft.com/

    There was talk about porting Gtk+ to it, but I have no information as to whether anyone is actually working on it (Anyone know?).

    There's no reason why Qt couldn't also be ported. IMO, TrollTech would be foolish not to go this route.

    X is pretty well thought out. It's been ported to the Itsy.

    There's little reason to bypass it's API. You simply need a leaner server with fewer features for embedded systems.


    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @05:31PM EST (#105)
    moderate one this up
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @08:31PM EST (#175)
    My name Shane Nay, (sorry too lazy to log in) and Greg Haerr of Microwindows and I are working on porting FLTK right now, it's almost done. The next target in my scopes is GTK/GLIB. I already downloaded the Win32 based source, and setup the headers. Haven't made a function list yet, but it's "in process". I'd say we're a couple months away from a usable GTK on microwindows.

    You can take a look at some screen shots of FLTK on microwindows at ftp://esdev.net/pub/fltk/scrshots/ There is a history type section, and some new stuff in fontpass2 directory.
    Re:X (Score:3, Interesting)
    by bluGill (hank@black-hole.com) on Tuesday March 21, @03:49PM EST (#47)
    (User Info) http://www.black-hole.com/users/henrymiller/

    I find that the majority of my time in X is spent with something onscreen not running on the local machine. Even if we call the programs running on the same machine as my window manager this is true.

    Maybe your desktop machine is fast enough, but not mine. I used to have an ultra sparc on my desktop. I hated it, genuine noisy fan, poor keyboard (You think Sun would know the controll key belongs next to the A. xmodmap is for more difficult tasks than that) And when I kicked the power cord all my compiles stoped. Now the server is in a back room, I have a NCD (A dumb terminal that can run X) on my desk.

    As a devolper I find that my programs have to run on a machine in the lab. Pop an X window from the lab machine to my desktop and its like working in the lab. THen I can go home and pop an X window from the lab to my home FreeBSD machine. (I don't normally work from home, but if I can check my compile over night and fix the one typo after supper I save time at work the next day)

    I used to have a sun3 in one room, and my main machine in anouther. In theory I could run programs on the sun3, but since the main machine is 400 mhz, and the sun is 16 (20? doesn't matter as m68k and x86 of different generations don't compare well by looking at mhz, but you can get the idea) who wants to? X still has life. Xfree86 is very fast on a local machine, and works just fine on a remote one.

    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @04:26PM EST (#69)
    I find that the majority of my time in X is spent with something onscreen not running on the local machine. Then you're in the wrong cubicle. Contact your system administrator to correct your position in the seating chart.
    You guys rail on about MS Wurd having bloated rarely used features, but you refuse to look at your own case with the same critical eye.
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by mulderlr (mulderlr @ netscape . net) on Tuesday March 21, @04:44PM EST (#77)
    (User Info)
    the problem isn't the overbloat by itself in any application that is the problem. The problem is the market share dominance that forces people to use something which is overbloated like in the case of Microsoft "Wurd"... Last time I looked nobody told you that you have to use X (and if they did you can modify the source to streamline it down to what you want), but my company sure as shit rails on me about having to use Microsoft "productivity" apps (if that isn't an oxymoron in and of itself).
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by 51M02 on Tuesday March 21, @05:35PM EST (#107)
    (User Info)
    Actually this is a very often used feature.

    The ability to use a GUI interface using two computers instead of one and even to share this environnements in network is wonderful.

    Also this method does not require much more memory or speed than any other concept

    In this case this new Qt version is for device that does not offer a lot of memory or CPU speed like the kind of computers we were using 4 years earlier or for Palm like devices (Internet Appliance) where every kb of memory footprint is important.

    In this kind of new device it's not very useful to be able to log on it from/to another computer to use a GUI. It just need to be able to access Yahoo(tm) and emails.
    - Open Source would not be as popular if Window$ was GPLed.

    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:17PM EST (#123)
    Popular? Yes--among developers. You need to remember your needs and conveniences are radically different from the (millions) people who use your work. If it were up to developers, monitors would probably be twice as tall as wide. 99% of computer users really don't care about networked displays...(trying not to say something nasty here)...infact they probably would want that port 6000 firewalled off.

    Who is being forced to use the boated--yes BLOATED, cranky, creaky narcotecture of grampa X? Well everyone who wwants to use Unix or Linux is pretty well forced to live with what's convenient but crappy for people who's idea of exciting desktop applications are transparent virtual terminals. A more appropriate question (or at least a more Utilitarian one) would be: how many people are turned off of linux and unix and forced to live with MacroShaft because X doesn't do the basic job of displaying to a monitor in acceptable fashion? (X4.0 just barely gets there now, and still, if anything is in motion--it's back to paleolithic era performance) And convinces them that everything else about the "alternative platform" must also suck?

    Why is it that when anyone says, "wouldn't it be awesome to have desktop speed and capabilities like well other desktops--by cutting out the deadwood of X" a thousand crustiphores poke their heads out and screech NEVER! YOU'll never take my network display capability away--as if the first logically necessitates the second. Non Sequiturs are the infallible sign of neurossification. Let's not condemn ourselves mutually to that evil end.

    This X server has been running for 3 months ... (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:15PM EST (#194)
    and there's a lot of apps open (a dozen actually - including Netscape, Emacs, applix, staroffice). It currently takes up 30 megs of RAM but about half of that is swapped out (I only have 64 megs).

    The main source of RAM usage is the Netscape process.

    How is this "bloat"?

    MS-Windows is 10 years old. X is about 17 at the most. The reason X is still around is that it works.
    Re:This X server has been running for 3 months ... (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @11:31PM EST (#222)
    It's running with a feature(s) most people don't need which noticeably hampers its basic performance with one or more windows open--and the feature can't be turned off. Bloated spec, sluggish performance.

    Why do you think people carp and bitch about the performance of XFree86? Because they see that it's fast, sleek and elegant ?? and seeing that makes them envious?

    Re:This X server has been running for 3 months ... (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @03:22AM EST (#229)
    This notion that the network transparency of X hampers it's functionality is urban legend. People carp and bitch about the performance of Xfree because it's a small group of volunteers trying to replicate the efforts of an entire industry of hardware vendors, oftentimes working without proper information.

    Furthermore, one implementation of X is not enough base a condemnation of X servers in general.

    Nevermind that in my own experience I have yet to suffer from this 'slow X' problem. Infact, I find myself running beefier NT machines during the day and being rather glad that I am 'subjecte' to 'sluggish X servers' when I compute at home.

    WinFoo may push pixels better, but Unix handles concurrence much better. In that end, that gives Unix or Linux the edge.
    Fast sleek and elegant? (Score:2, Insightful)
    by Arker on Wednesday March 22, @05:09AM EST (#234)
    (User Info)

    X isn't designed to be fast sleek or elegant. It's designed to be stable flexible and powerful. It is that.

    How much of a performance hit the flexibility costs seems to be a subject of great debate. Not being an X hacker all I can offer is subjective, anecdotal evidence - on my box, certain things are noticeably slower, but other things are noticeably faster, I don't see any significant overall speed advantage to win32 over X on my hardware, just some fairly minor trade-offs going both ways.

    Of course X itself is flexible enough to adapt to a lot of situations - if I stuck a larger window manager on X I could make it slower than win32, and if I stuck a smaller one on I could speed it up a bit too.

    There are downsides to flexibility, to be sure, but there are advantages too. If you really don't like X, why not make something you like better? X isn't a part of linux, remember that. It's one of many open source programs that you can run if you choose.


    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:17PM EST (#195)
    Uhmm the two aren't mutually exclusive: you could run your "Qt in the framebuffer" thing and just run an X server that displays in the framebuffer too to run X apps.

    There already are a few framebuffer X servers out there.

    There's nothing wrong with X11. (Score:2)
    by jetson123 (br_9801 at hotmail dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:39PM EST (#75)
    (User Info)
    X11 is still a great protocol for network transparent windowing: it's efficient, conceptually simple, and mature. In those areas where it really matters (bulk image and geometry transfer, 3D graphics) X11 already gives applications memory mapped access.

    X11 does lack a few features, like antialiased drawing and fonts. Those can be added easily with X11's well-defined and widely used extension mechanism, and without breaking backwards compatibility. If you type "xdpyinfo", you'll see that you are already running a dozen or so extensions.

    Using libraries that access the frame buffer directly does make sense for embedded systems, but for general usage, they would represent a big step backwards.

    ~/There's something wrong with make world today/~ (Score:5, Interesting)
    by MenTaLguY (mental@rydia.net.nospam) on Tuesday March 21, @06:17PM EST (#122)
    (User Info) http://lunar8.rydia.net/mental
    X11 is still a great protocol for network transparent windowing

    Really?

    it's efficient

    Only if you consider marshalling/unmarshalling individual drawing primitives across some sort of IPC (network or local) efficient. No, I'm not advocating direct application hardware access. Think outside the box, and maybe go back and look at how systems like NeWS, Display Postscript and Berlin are designed.

    conceptually simple

    No, not really. Try writing a window manager sometime. The original idea was (is) pretty simple, but once you start adding the various standard extensions that accumulated over the years, if you're writing something major, it's a real mind-bending mess. You're fortunate nowadays that GTK+ and Qt hide a lot of the evil from you.

    mature

    No argument there; X is tried, true, and it works.

    In those areas where it really matters (bulk image and geometry transfer, 3D graphics) X11 already gives applications memory mapped access.

    That doesn't help you if you're remote ... and yes those are nice sometimes if you're remote.

    X11 does lack a few features, like antialiased drawing and fonts. Those can be added easily with X11's well-defined and widely used extension mechanism, and without breaking backwards compatibility.

    Ever wonder why that hasn't been done yet? It's because most people who thought about it decided it wasn't worth the trouble: existing applications might run, but they wouldn't get the new functionality (i.e. antialiased characters). They would still still require a rewrite (yes, a rewrite, not just recompiling). The APIs and necessary backend code are just necessarily that different, because the original X ones were designed so badly.

    [To be fair, the situation is a little better now, just because modern toolkits abstract the stuff enough that you could get by with only minor changes to the library APIs ... in most cases you'd just have to recompile the apps that didn't use the changed APIs, and only make minor changes to the ones that did, or that bypassed the library in some way]

    If the antialiased font server was backwards compatible, it would only be because it kept the entire old (now redundant) architecture and API, in addition to implementing the new one.

    The necessity of taking this approach to extend other aspects of X is one of the contributing factors to its bloat over the years.

    Using libraries that access the frame buffer directly does make sense for embedded systems, but for general usage, they would represent a big step backwards.

    Agreed, for the most part. However, arbitrated (i.e. not totally unsupervised) hardware access is still good for certain classes of specialized applications, and of course games. That's the need that ultimately spawned fbcon and KGI (the GGI kernel layer).

    Something to ponder in parting... if someone wants to experiment with a windowing system that is not X, they either need to rewrite all the drivers themselves, run under X (...then what's the point?) or they need to have some kind of non-X driver infrastructure availible.

    i.e. has the reliance on X to drive graphics hardware directly strangled the development of alternatives on Unix?


    Re:~/There's something wrong with make world today (Score:1)
    by spitzak (spitzak at d two dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @07:20PM EST (#148)
    (User Info) http://www.cinenet.net/users/spitzak
    has the reliance on X to drive graphics hardware directly strangled the development of alternatives on Unix?

    YES!

    All the stuff going into XFree86 has killed development of fb or gdi or other simpler protocols. It does not matter how well they are designed, if you want your fancy card to run at full resolution, you have to use X, because all the hardware control is hidden in the X server.

    One plausible solution: could new replacements interface with the binary plug-in interface that the new XFree86 4.0 has? Then they could get all the hardware. I'm sure the interface will be painful because it will make X assumptions, but not impossible to program for. Once an acceptable replacement for X has been made, a new low-level interface can be designed, and instructions on how to change the drivers.

    Re:~/There's something wrong with make world today (Score:2)
    by jetson123 (br_9801 at hotmail dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:42PM EST (#181)
    (User Info)
    DPS and NeWS never worked as well or as efficiently as X11. In particular, for what really mattered--getting lots of data from the client to the display server--they are a lot worse than X11. X11 gives you memory mapped bulk data transfer on the local machine, and efficiently packed bulk data transfer to remote machines. That's really the best you can hope for.

    As for writing window managers, if you think writing them under X11 is hard, try doing it sometimes under Windows or MacOS. X11 at least delineates and defines responsibilities and puts the window manager in control. The fact that the protocol is complex is a result of the fact that there are a lot of complex interactions that can happen between different applications from different machines.

    Thank you! (Score:1)
    by uradu (spamspamspam.uradu@cdc.net) on Tuesday March 21, @09:49PM EST (#210)
    (User Info)
    The fact that marshalling has barely come up in the whole discussion about X shows that most people are talking out of a hole in their head, and it's not the mouth!

    You simply cannot say high perfomance and RPC in the same breath, period. X is simply a specialized RPC mechanism, including all the marshalling/demarshalling of parameters that goes with it. As soon as you want to draw a line, X packages up the parameters into a packet, zips it across the network to the server, which then extracts the line parameters, figures out that you want a line, and then does the drawing. The amount of overhead involved is mind boggling. The same basic process is going on even if the server is local, except that you save the network transfer. If X were really smart, it could first check if the server is local, and if so, dispense with the entire marshalling/demarshalling process and resolve the drawing to a simple local API call. Even so, the extra steps involved in this checking would be a significant slowdown.

    Consider that in comparison the original Windows drawing mechanism is much more straighforward. Drawing requests always resolve to API calls which then delegate drawing to the driver. Much more straightforward than X. Except that even that was too slow for high performance games, which led to DirectX. And even DirectX isn't the fastest thing around, according to some die-hard gamers. And yet compared to X it's orders of magnitude faster.

    It would be intersting to see a breakdown of the number of machine instructions required for some given drawing primitives, first under plain X, then using memory mapped X, the plain Windows, then DirectX (maybe also NT 3.5, 4.0 and 5.0, as they've moved more of the display stuff into the kernel).

    It's amusing to see hardcore Xers always defend X mainly by virtue of its remote display capabilities. And they're vocal enough that it would seem that they're the majority. But if Linux should really take off and become a popular desktop OS, remote display will hardly be used at all, by percentage of users. The great unwashed masses had a hard enough time understanding the concept of a Web page, remote data displayed locally. Getting them used to the notion of a remote program displayed locally will be a shift I wouldn't want to walk them through.

    Besides, I remotely administer NT machines daily quite nicely, courtesy of a little utility called VNC. Brute force maybe, but who cares? It works well enough, doesn't bring the network to its knees (something that couldn't be said about X in the 80s), and is completely free.

    Uwe Wolfgang Radu
    Chattanooga, TN
    Re:Thank you! (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @10:41PM EST (#218)
    Damn you people act as if there is no alternative, and seem completely naive to DRI, and GLX. I mean seriously people, I get 40fps at 800x600 in Quake III with my Matrox G400... seriously fellows, learn before you blabber. The G400 is NOT a good 3d card either... in fact it's 3d engine is supposed to suck hardcore.

    Not only that, but there are alternatives. Microwindows is one, but they don't have as many developers as they need. So instead you people bitch about there not being an alternative when there is an alternative that needs more programmers. Get off your ass and do something about it. X isn't going to kill Linux... lazy people that just sit on the fence whining will kill linux. Get off your ass and help Microwindows, or GLX.
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @04:46PM EST (#79)
    I recently had the idea of some kind of 'remote framebuffer', when the SUN people showed off with their 'Ray 1' Terminal, which basically implements a really dumb protocol to access a graphical desktop. What at first sound redundant (because we already have X) makes sense when you see how it can handle compression, encryption and authentication/session management, which can all be some kind of problem in X. I guess we could implement something like that using a system like the network block device with a kernel and a user space part. Apart from running XF86_FBdev, this could then also be used to provide a rather lean application server _and_ thin clients as terminals using QT for the framebuffer.
    Re:X (Score:2)
    by MenTaLguY (mental@rydia.net.nospam) on Tuesday March 21, @06:22PM EST (#125)
    (User Info) http://lunar8.rydia.net/mental
    compression, encryption and authentication/session management

    What about tunneling X over ssh?


    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:41PM EST (#138)
    While using dxpc at the same time.
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:38PM EST (#137)
    X can tunnel over ssh (in fact, ssh usually sets this up automatically for you), providing compression, encryption and authentication. Session management is normally handled by xsm, which has been around for years.
    Re:X (Score:2)
    by jetson123 (br_9801 at hotmail dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:55PM EST (#186)
    (User Info)
    It's been done, and it's widely used: VNC. It's free, it's very useful, and there are some vendors now offering thin clients based on it.
    Re:X (Score:1)
    by Wesley Felter (wesf@cs.utexas.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @09:31PM EST (#205)
    (User Info) http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/wesf/
    There was a paper (at SOSP, I think) about SLIM, which is the protocol that the Sun Ray uses. In their benchmarks, SLIM beats VNC by a wide margin.
    Re:X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @06:45AM EST (#241)
    There are lots of protocols that are more efficient than VNC. Let's hope Sun makes a open source clients and servers available like VNC. Until then, VNC is pretty much the only game in town for most people.
    S (Score:1)
    by levl289 (levl289@ check out www.sonous.com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:47PM EST (#81)
    (User Info) http://www.sonous.com
    You know, with so many trolls bypassing /. moderators by moderatring their own posts, trying to write directly to the top of the screen, one would think that /. moderation is out of date.

                                      There seems to be a big push to get the /. moderation protocol away from trolls and into the hands of insightful posters. Any thoughts (maybe we could have an insightful post next week?) people?

    [sorry, couldn't resist]


    Q: What do you think about American Culture?
    A: I think it's a good idea.
    (adapted from Ghandi)
    Whoa! Looks SOMEBODY forgot our slogan 'round here (Score:1, Insightful)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:33PM EST (#133)
    You know it--you love it--you can repeat it after 12 beers and a bong hit standing on your head ('cause you've heard it all your life...)
    Xwindows today, Xwindows tomorrow, Xwindows forever!
    After all, if it was good enough for Dad why change ?!?

    seriously people, when do you think maybe it might be time to move on? Are there any plans for that day or do we just wing it here?

    Re:Whoa! Looks SOMEBODY forgot our slogan 'round h (Score:2)
    by jetson123 (br_9801 at hotmail dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @09:23PM EST (#199)
    (User Info)
    Yes, I completely agree that there isn't enough innovation in GUIs on Linux. And I completely agree that it is time to move on.

    But X11/Xlib isn't the culprit. X11 clearly is not the best thing since sliced bread. It's an old design, a bit clunky in places, and lacks antialiasing for low resolution screens. But the would-be X11 competitors for desktop applications don't aim much higher. And the clunkiness of the low-level X11 API is of little concern to programmers, since it's mostly hidden by the various toolkits.

    The really important areas where Linux GUIs ought to innovate (but don't) are at the toolkit level. Well executed as they are, Qt and GTK+ are still MFC/toolbox-style, event driven, decades old technology. There are a lot more interesting and innovative ways of writing GUIs out there. Whether it's X11, GDI, Java, Berlin, SVGAlib, GGI, or anything else under the covers doesn't matter much.

    While for embedded systems, getting rid of X11 makes some sense because of space constraints, trying to replace X11 on the desktop to me is just barking up the wrong tree. I'd much rather see some of that effort go into something like a desktop based on scalable UIs, notebook interfaces, transcript-based interfaces, or any of a large number of other interesting, innovative approaches to GUIs.

    Re:Whoa! Looks SOMEBODY forgot our slogan 'round h (Score:1)
    by Arker on Wednesday March 22, @05:12AM EST (#235)
    (User Info)

    Got an idea? Develop it. If people find it useful it will grow. This ain't MS, no one decides where "we" are going to go, we each do that ourselves.


    Re:X (Score:1, Insightful)
    by spitzak (spitzak at d two dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @07:43PM EST (#152)
    (User Info) http://www.cinenet.net/users/spitzak
    I seem to be in the minority here, but I don't think the "network protocol" is the problem. The problem is in the horrid design of the Xlib calls themselves! Implementing Xlib as local calls will just remove the only advantage of X and would be totally wrong.

    There is nothing wrong with buffered network protocols. In fact they use less context switches than api's. If this were not true, why do we have interfaces that write more than one character (or one bit) to a device? Isn't the overhead of copying those characters to a buffer from where they originally were inefficient? NO!

    Another way to look at it: if Xlib puts 10,000 requests in a buffer and sends it, we get TWO context switches (one to the kernel, one to the server). Win32 gets 10,000 context switches (each one to the kernel for each call). And X, despite being 5000 times more efficient in context switches, does not have the risks of putting complex code in the kernel! (PS: yea I know Win32 ain't that bad, but their solution is exactly equivalent to buffering multiple requests!)

    What does lose in network protocols is synchronous communication. When Xlib has to wait for an answer from the server, we get at least 4 context switches, plus the network overhead, and we lose. But we don't need so much synchronous communication!

    The solution is to chuck out most of the Xlib design except for the fact that it is a network protocol. A program that displays a non-interactive display should be writable with a *single* "write" to the server (plus it may have to wait for redraw events and send that write again).

    Get rid of colormaps! Trash the horrid font system and put in something so that if I ask for "Times" and 12 points, I get something (even if it is not Times at 12 points, if it has letters in it it would be an improvement over Xlib!). Either get rid of window managers, or make it sequential so I can create a window and send drawing to it in one block, without waiting for a stupid expose event to indicate syncrhonization with the window manager. Get rid of atoms, or make it so I can define thousands of atoms in a single round trip.

    While we are at it, put some non-primitive graphics in. It is inexcusable that we don't have anti-aliased fonts, or anti-aliased polygons (even though Win32 does not have these), or a call that draws a color image without me having to figure out how to dither it to the hardware!

    Network transparency... (Score:1)
    by Rakarra (rakNarraO@SpacbPellA.Mnet) on Tuesday March 21, @08:44PM EST (#182)
    (User Info)
    ... along with OS transparency (display one OS's graphical applications on the screen driven by another OS) are X's greatest strengths. There are many people for whom direct/hardware calls would be useless.

    My setup: Two computers, one running Windows, the other running Linux. Linux is my "big server," it's where most of my files are stored (served by samba) and where I get much of my "real work" done. The monitor is connected to the Windows machine, and when Exceed runs in full-screen mode, there's pretty much no difference between that and running X from the Linux console. That kind of flexibily is what I love about X, and removing or dumbing down the network aspects would just kill the whole point of it.

    It'd be ok for running the few games available, but you'd be sacrificing much more to gain that. Assuming "get the X protocol away from network protocols" is even necessary for that, a statement I wouldn't agree with.


    Take the NOSPAM out of my address if you're responding by mail..

    eliminating X from embedded systems bad idea (Score:1)
    by CurtisLeeFulton (echo O0otisf@bl0o.Ox|sed y/Oo0/cru/) on Tuesday March 21, @11:10PM EST (#221)
    (User Info) http://blur.cx

    Taking the asumption that many apps will fade from the desktop and reincarnate themselves as single devices, keeping X from these products would seriously limit their functionality.

    A consumer's office suite/browser module and gaming/multimedia module should be able to output to a wide variety of display servers and be controled by a wide variety of input servers.

    Only X makes this possible.

    The analog RGB or VGA jack on your computer or gaming machine is going to be replaced by a jack for IEEE1394 or giga ethernet. Both are fast enough even for DV, which is 960x540 pixels at 30fps.

    Because X has been around for so long makes X look old fashioned, but I think it's the future.

    Project EverBlue (Score:2)
    by Pseudonymus Bosch on Wednesday March 22, @05:51AM EST (#237)
    (User Info) http://www.dmoz.org/
    The project EverBlue is a port in progress of Xlib to OS/2 Presentation Manager, so that you can compile X applications to run in a OS/2 framebuffer, using your normal OS/2 drivers and integrated with the rest of your OS/2 apps.
    --
    ††"Free" as in "free 'undred quid".
    Now how about GTK+? (Score:1, Interesting)
    by NRLax27 on Tuesday March 21, @03:18PM EST (#12)
    (User Info)
    I think this is a great idea, does anybody know if it would be possible to re-work the GTK+ backend to also let it use the Linux Framebuffer device without X? I personally prefer programming in GTK+ over QT, and would be interested in any developments along this line.

    ./configure
    make comment
    make post

    Re:Now how about GTK+? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:38PM EST (#37)
    No. Unfortunately that would be absolutely impossible. The reason is that GTK+ is lacking the real-time direct API that Qt has. That and I think the newest version of Qt includes a gigabit flux capacitor.

    Seriously though, what are you smoking?

    Re:Now how about GTK+? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:51PM EST (#48)
    Considering that a Win32 port of GTK+ exists, it certainly sounds possible: all you'd really need to replace are the Xlib calls.
    Re:Now how about GTK+? (Score:1)
    by PiMan (piman.spambegone@sacredchao.net) on Tuesday March 21, @05:22PM EST (#101)
    (User Info) http://www.sacredchao.net/piman
    Note: I'm not a GTK+ hacker My understanding is that GTK sits above the Gdk layer, which does all the actual work, and porting Gdk means (pretty much) a port of GTK. This is why the Win32 port was (relatively) easy, and why you have both Gdk/X11 and Gdk/Imlib to choose from in X. So a port of Gdk to the framebuffer would do it.
    Windows 2000: Designed for the Internet. The Internet: Designed for UNIX.
    A way for QT to take over? (Score:3, Interesting)
    by molog on Tuesday March 21, @03:19PM EST (#14)
    (User Info)
    With QT now being a good solution for embeded Linux, it would make good sense to use QT for application portability. I like QT. It is object oriented and easy to program with. On the other hand, I'm not too keen on the way that it is marketed. With QT you can use it in open source software with no charge. If you are making propriatery software there is a big charge for it(well some people could compare it to other componets that cost more but I'm speaking from my point of view). I know it would be a nice world if everyone would write open source apps, but a lot of cool apps that would get written for Linux would only be brought over if there was a good open frame work. I think that the best way to go as far as development libraries go is to sell a development environment. Trolltech sells the library only AFAIK. It is for this reason that I support and use the GTK becuase it feels more open to me that everyone can use it. I'm sure I'll get flamed but I think that a development library should not have a cost becuase you are trying to make a standard. Just an opinion.
    Molog

    So Linus, what are we doing tonight?
    The same thing we every night Tux. Try to take over the world!

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by Taxing Bastard (lhilATihugDOTcoDOTnz) on Tuesday March 21, @03:33PM EST (#27)
    (User Info) http://www.memepool.com
    It is a bit of a pain not being able to develop any proprietary stuff without paying heaps. You have to think seriously about learning Qt, if you can only use it for open stuff, when at work, you are told to develop closed source. It makes you think - is this the best thing for me to spend time on learning? Do I really want to learn another way of doing things?

    And you are right that there would probably be more cool apps come across. We cannot expect everything to be open source, if we want to achieve "World domination - and fast"


    "Oh, I got me a helmet - I got a beauty!"
    Jack Nicholson, Easy Rider
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by hypergeek (cat > /dev/null) on Tuesday March 21, @06:34PM EST (#134)
    (User Info)
    Do I really want to learn another way of doing things?

    Even if you only plan on solving a particular problem a certain way, it almost always pays to know "another way of doing things". Otherwise, you could go through life without realizing that you've been tackling a given problem in a suboptimal manner.

    Suppose one day you decided to write your own library similar to GTK or Qt? I don't know about you, but I would certainly be interested in knowing the different ways that each one solved various problems, and I'd also rather have experience programming in both so I know which solutions work best in practice, and which ones need to be replaced by something completely new.

    (Sigh... if I only had the time...)

    --
    Poochy eats a tripe ration.

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1, Insightful)
    by not Bruce Perens on Tuesday March 21, @03:39PM EST (#38)
    (User Info)
    Wow, that got moderated up really fast...goes to show how most moderators are really just pattern-matchers. (Try it sometime: write a comment with no content but in the form of the ones that tend to get moderated up, and watch...)

    The point is to bring big non-free apps over to Linux, right? And why aren't they here already? Because companies tend not to feel comfortable without having a reliable vendor who you can yell at if something goes wrong. Troll Tech provides that, and they even give their stuff away for open-source projects.

    So we've got a company that's helping to bring heavy hitters over while allowing current open-source projects to develop, and making a buck in the process. Why are you complaining again?
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by Peter La Casse (peter_lacasse@bigfoot.com) on Tuesday March 21, @03:43PM EST (#41)
    (User Info) http://www.execpc.com/~tlacasse/
    With QT you can use it in open source software with no charge.

    It's not as simple as that. You cannot use it for making open source windows software without shelling out big bucks (relatively speaking) for the professional version (unless you port the linux version to Windows yourself, if I read the license correctly.) This is what prevented me from using QT for an open source project I was considering - I wanted to have cross-platform capability. When I asked them about it, they used the "we have to eat somehow" line. So much for believing in open source.

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1, Funny)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @04:22PM EST (#63)
    So much for believing in nutritional needs.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:3, Interesting)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:01PM EST (#158)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    When I asked them about it, they used the "we have to eat somehow" line.

    Do you have a problem with them eating? The levels of intolerance here at Slashdot have reached an all time low.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by divec on Tuesday March 21, @08:19PM EST (#166)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    Do you have a problem with them eating? The levels of intolerance here at Slashdot have reached an all time low.

    I don't think the original poster was objecting to them eating, merely to their use of proprietory licensing.


    Most people in the world get paid without creating proprietory software. Even software developers (most of them write in-house software, which is not licensed *at all* - and hence does not have the same socially divisive effects that non-free packaged software does).

    In any case, this claim that people will `starve' if they don't write proprietory software is completely false, especially in Norway.


    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by divec on Tuesday March 21, @08:21PM EST (#170)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    I can never remember how to spell "proprietary". Oh well.
    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:3, Insightful)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @09:28PM EST (#203)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    I don't think the original poster was objecting to them eating, merely to their use of proprietory licensing.

    Then he should have stuck to that objection, instead of bringing food into it :-)

    Seriously, it is unrealistic to expect commercial developers to give up their jobs and become waiters as suggested by RMS. But we are not talking about developers here, we are talking about the companies that employ developers. Before these companies can pay their employees, they need revenue. If Troll Tech open sourced their professional version, they would end up with ZERO revenue, and be forced to lay off their employees. If they can get complementary products to support Qt with in the future, then that may be an option at that time. But it is not an option now.

    Qt is not the type of product that you can shrink wrap, put on store shelves, and hope enough users buy it to subsidize those that download it instead. And it's unrealistic to expect them to convert to a support company, particularly since their customers are in the profession least likely to need support.

    The unfortunate fact is that Troll Tech has only one product. They don't sell other proprietary software like Redhat does. They don't sell hardware like VA Linux. All they have is Qt, and if they don't sell it they have to lay off their employees.

    Their current situation is in my mind nearly ideal. The software is free if you write free software, but it's proprietary if you write proprietary software (I only wish that the Windows version were the same). But one who is of the opinion that all software must be free takes a strange stand by insisting that proprietary software get the benefit of a free library.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by Peter La Casse (peter_lacasse@bigfoot.com) on Wednesday March 22, @09:11AM EST (#248)
    (User Info) http://www.execpc.com/~tlacasse/
    I don't think the original poster was objecting to them eating, merely to their use of proprietory licensing.

    Then he should have stuck to that objection, instead of bringing food into it :-)

    I made the (apparently false) assumption that slashdot readers would know that the "we have to eat somehow" line is a false argument. As the post you replied to stated, whether or not Troll Tech developers are able to eat has nothing whatsoever to do with whether or not they allow QT to be used for free in open source windows applications.

    To be more explicit: in refusing to allow this, Troll Tech essentially states that they don't believe that the model they pay lip service to (free for open source, not free for closed source) is a viable one. If they did believe this, there would be no operating system restrictions on the QT license.

    Great expectations. (Score:1)
    by Roberto (ralsina@unl.edu.ar) on Wednesday March 22, @10:46AM EST (#254)
    (User Info) http://www.kde.org
    One would also expect that someone that writes about the Qt license would actually have read it.

    There is no OS restriction in the Qt license.

    For example, I am doing a microwindows port. Microwindows runs just fine on DOS. You could use Qt on win32(with some effort) using it.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Wednesday March 22, @02:33PM EST (#258)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    I asked VA Linux why they don't give their hardware systems away. They replied "we have to eat somehow."

    But that's not a true statement. Their employees may lose their jobs and the company may fold, but they can always get other jobs.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @03:51PM EST (#49)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    I'm sure I'll get flamed but I think that a development library should not have a cost becuase you are trying to make a standard.

    Don't worry, I won't flame :-)

    The reason Qt has a cost is because Troll Tech is a business. Hmmm, was that a tautology? I actually think their marketing makes a whole lot of sense. Free for Free Software, proprietary for proprietary software. I wish the would do the same for their Windows product as well.

    Troll Tech is still largely a one product company. They would be foolish to give away their only source of revenue. But this embedded Qt, coupled with some other new products coming out the same time as Qt 2.1, means that there will be more of an incentive to opensource their professional version as well. If they can make more profits by giving Qt away and selling the complementary products, then they will do so.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by molog on Tuesday March 21, @04:46PM EST (#80)
    (User Info)
    Yeah, I understand that Qt is their only product. I was sorta saying that I would have liked it better if they sold a development environment instead of just a library. On a side note, unless you are going for strick portability using Qt on Windows doesn't make since to me. It seems that it would serve only to port *nix apps over that used Qt. If I was developing an app for the Windows world, I would probably just use the Win32 API. It is native (buggy I know) and consistant with the M$ way of doing things. Is the Qt for Windows targeted at Unix developers who want a port? I don't see Windows developers using it.
    Molog

    So Linus, what are we doing tonight?
    The same thing we every night Tux. Try to take over the world!

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @05:41PM EST (#111)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    I see a lot of Windows developers on the Qt mailing lists. Probably just as many as there are Unix developers. From the questions they've posted and the comments they've made, I can surmise that at least a quarter of the Win/Qt developers are not doing porting. And this is despite the fact that Qt is not even close to the MS paradigm. The reason for this is that Qt is better, easier and more robust than MFC or Win32.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by HarpMan (smolitor@erac.com) on Tuesday March 21, @06:56PM EST (#145)
    (User Info)
    Yes.

    I do wonder, though, if Qt would attract more Windows developers with a lower license fee. Of course Qt has the right to charge whatever they want, and if you know that you're going to be selling something commercially, the price is not that much. But I'm thinking of the Windows hackers who shell out their own money for a copy of Visual C++, VB, Delphi, etc. (I used to be one of them, before I converted to Linux/Open Source). Troll Tech might make up in volume what they lose in price.

    Also, a lot of Qt/Kde developers might release free as in beer versions of their apps for Windows, if the Qt license didn't cost that much.


    Stephen Molitor steve_molitor@yahoo.com
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:18PM EST (#165)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    Yeah, it would be great if the Trolls treated Windows like Unix: free for free and proprietary for proprietary. I suspect that this has crossed their minds more than once. I sense some signals that something like this may happen in the future.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by GeZ117 on Wednesday March 22, @03:39AM EST (#231)
    (User Info)
    Also, a lot of Qt/KDE developers might release free as in beer versions of their apps for Windows

    Maybe right for QApplications, but not for KApplications. I remember reading Matthias Ettrich's letter for launching the KDE project, something like "Qt is portable to Windows, but don't matter, we can use enough Unix-specific things to make a windows port of KDE impossible". Most peoples involved in the KDE project want to see more apps for unices (particularly free ones), and not more apps for Windows (particularly proprietary ones, as they're the only ones ;) ).

    Most Qt-hater blame Qt for making money out of people wanting to work in an universe were everyone is making money (MS OS). They compare with GTK but the comparison is unreceivable: GTK don't allow proprietary development, and don't allow cross-platform development. As long as you stick with free development for unices, you use them the same way: costless, with a look on the source. Oh yes, for the Qt 1.X branch you weren't granted the right to distibute modified version of Qt. This was mainly to enforce Troll Tech's right as developers and maintainer of this toolkit, something which is tacitly agreed on for GPL software (the creator is the owner). Can you imagine John Doe Programmer modifying three function in the Linux kernel and then saying "Hey, I've got the new official Linux kernel!" No way.

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:1)
    by hattig (SpinningNucleon FATBAT yahoo.com) on Wednesday March 22, @08:56AM EST (#245)
    (User Info) http://evil.cones.org.uk/
    QT should release a book "Programming QT for Windows" and include QT free of charge with the book, and make money from book sales :-)

    [ Discuss new TLDs ]

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by bero-rh (bero@redhat.com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:51PM EST (#85)
    (User Info) http://people.redhat.com/bero
    What's wrong with the Qt license?
    Someone writing proprietary software does it for the money. It's fair that all the developers (including the ones working on the widget set etc.) would profit from that if the programmers don't give back anything else (their code).

    It's not much unlike the GPL in that respect (the difference being that you can write proprietary software with Qt if you pay, and you can't do it at all with the GPL).
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2, Informative)
    by molog on Tuesday March 21, @07:05PM EST (#147)
    (User Info)
    It's not much unlike the GPL in that respect (the difference being that you can write proprietary software with Qt if you pay, and you can't do it at all with the GPL).

    This is one of the reasons that I like the LGPL more then I like the GPL. My point was that if they want to make Qt a standard then it should be free for "everyone" to use. The BSD license is also good in this regard. I'm not really critizing them for charging money for it but it isn't what I would do. That's it basically.
    Molog

    So Linus, what are we doing tonight?
    The same thing we every night Tux. Try to take over the world!

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Ian Bicking (bickiia@earlham.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @07:48PM EST (#154)
    (User Info) http://www.cs.earlham.edu/~bickiia
    It's not much unlike the GPL in that respect (the difference being that you can write proprietary software with Qt if you pay, and you can't do it at all with the GPL).
    This isn't really true. Caldera uses the GPL extensively in just this way. They own the copyright for a lot of the stuff they produce, and if you want it under a non-GPL license, you have to pay them. This is nearly identical to the QPL.

    The difference is that what Caldera does provides much more benefit to the community. You cannot use portions of Qt in a GPLed program because of the incompatible licenses. And you cannot make a purely free fork of Qt -- any extensions to Qt have to be distributed under some sort of license that allows proprietary use by Troll Tech (I don't remember the exact terms).

    Caldera uses a symmetrical license -- it obeys the GPL, you obey the GPL, everyone has equal rights. But Troll is more equal than everyone else with Qt -- it can do whatever it wants with your patches to Qt, but you don't have the same rights. You can't say "this extension I wrote is only available to free software programs" -- and you probably don't want to, but they don't even give you the choice.

    This could be more important if/when Qt moves to embedded or otherwise Abnormal environments. In an embedded environment, things are often statically linked and integrated. But if you want to integrate Qt into general graphical interface, you will have to give up a lot of the control of your code to Troll Tech. The same is true with the GPL, but in that case you are giving up a lot of control to the community, not a company. That's what Open Source/Free Software is all about: community. The QPL is one-way, centralized on Troll Tech.

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:50PM EST (#185)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    ...any extensions to Qt have to be distributed under some sort of license that allows proprietary use by Troll Tech (I don't remember the exact terms).

    You don't remember them because they aren't there. Troll Tech only gets rights to Qt derivatives (in the sense of copyright law), not to extensions.

    But actually, they might not be able to proprietarize you derivations either! IANAL, but look at the clause in question: ...a non-exclusive royalty-free right is granted to the initial developer of the Software to distribute your modification in future versions of the Software provided such versions remain available under these terms... To my non-legal mind, this means that they can only use your derivatives in the Qt version you derived from. If you derived from the Free X version, they can't use it in the Win32 version without your permission. They could of course put it in the proprietary X version, but they would still have to include it in the free version as well. Again, IANAL.
    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Ian Bicking (bickiia@earlham.edu) on Wednesday March 22, @10:10AM EST (#252)
    (User Info) http://www.cs.earlham.edu/~bickiia
    Troll Tech only gets rights to Qt derivatives (in the sense of copyright law), not to extensions.
    I don't see the distinction. The relavent clause is this (from the QPL):

    3. You may make modifications to the Software and distribute your modifications, in a form that is separate from the Software, such as patches. The following restrictions apply to modifications:

    a. Modifications must not alter or remove any copyright notices in the Software.

    b. When modifications to the Software are released under this license, a non-exclusive royalty-free right is granted to the initial developer of the Software to distribute your modification in future versions of the Software provided such versions remain available under these terms in addition to any other license(s) of the initial developer.

    It is, altogether, a rather short license. It doesn't seem to make any definition of "modified Software" or derivative work. I would thus assume that anything that used a portion of QPLed code would fall under this clause, and that would include many forms of extensions (though again, extension is not well defined either).

    This also clearly means that the initial developer has the right to distribute your free modifications under their proprietary license ("right is granted to the initial developer of the Software to distribute your modification in future versions of the Software provided such versions remain available under these terms in addition to any other license(s) of the initial developer."). This is a confusing notion, as each piece of the software has an initial developer, so I don't know why Troll Tech takes precedence...

    Re:A way for QT to take over? (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Wednesday March 22, @02:28PM EST (#257)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    It doesn't seem to make any definition of "modified Software" or derivative work...extension is not well defined either

    It doesn't have to define "modify" or "derivative" as they are already defined under copyright law. If you only link to Qt, then at most your code is an extension. But the only way you can be derived from Qt is to take parts of their actual code and modify them. The latter is what clause 3 refers to.

    But I assume you want to modify Qt itself...

    This also clearly means that the initial developer has the right to distribute your free modifications under their proprietary license

    That is true, but they also have the obligation to keep it in their free version as well. In short, they cannot close source it. The only way they can use it as proprietary code is to simultaneously issue it as open source code.
    Qt Public License incompatible with itself (Score:2)
    by divec on Tuesday March 21, @08:10PM EST (#164)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    What's wrong with the QT license?

    It's an asymmetric license - Troll can use your derivatives in a non-free product, but you can't use theirs in a non-free product.


    This means that you can't combine code from both QT and a QPLed product from someone else. You'd have to give both original authors rights over each other's code which the QPL doesn't let you give.


    Compared to standard proprietory licenses, the QPL is a good deal. But don't mistake it for a license which allows the community-style code reuse which has made OSS mushroom so fast.


    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    Re:Qt Public License incompatible with itself (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:32PM EST (#176)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    You are only half right. Yes, it is asymmetrical. But there's nothing wrong with that per se. As with any copyrightable product, the authors have some rights to derivative works.

    However, you claim about the QPL being incompatible with itself is totally off base. Troll Tech has zero rights to the code of third parties. Just because the QPL makes you open up your source code, it does not follow that Troll gets any rights to patch it into their proprietary version.
    Re:Qt Public License incompatible with itself (Score:2)
    by divec on Tuesday March 21, @08:41PM EST (#180)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    Just because the QPL makes you open up your source code, it does not follow that Troll gets any rights to patch it into their proprietary version.

    The QPL insists you give the initial developer these rights in your derivative works. In the case of QT, that means Troll. The relevant paragraph is 3c:
    When modifications to the Software are released under this license, a non-exclusive royalty-free right is granted to the initial developer of the Software to distribute your modification in future versions of the Software provided such versions remain available under these terms in addition to any other license(s) of the initial developer. [emphasis added]

    This means exactly that they get the right to patch it into their proprietary version.
    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    Re:Qt Public License incompatible with itself (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:59PM EST (#188)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    Clause 3c refers to the Software, ei. the Qt Widget Library. You would be correct if I incorporated a third party's QPLd code into my own version of Qt, but that was not your scenario at all. You were talking about linking an application to both the QPLd Qt and another QPLd code base. The Trolls get zero rights to any of your code that merely links to Qt (beyond the demand that you open source it).

    They can't proprietarize your code unless it is a modification to their code.
    Re:Qt Public License incompatible with itself (Score:1)
    by divec on Tuesday March 21, @09:26PM EST (#202)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    They can't proprietarize your code unless it is a modification to their code

    I was indeed talking about this scenario; if I gave the impression that I meant merely linking to libraries then that's my mistake.


    Here's a relevant example of this being a problem. I want to do away with X. I want to modify QT to work without X, but in my modified version I want to support other toolkits such as Athena. I find a QPLed implementation of Athena. I want to merge these two codebases and create my own derivative codebase. I can't, because the QPL won't let me. If the toolkits were GPLed, this wouldn't be a problem.


    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    Re:Qt Public License incompatible with itself (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Wednesday March 22, @01:52PM EST (#256)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    I've been thinking this over since yesterday, and there is still a problem with your scenario. The problem is copyright law. It doesn't matter what the any license says, it can't give any rights to the copyright holder that he or she did not already possess. The rights of party "A" do not transfer to party "B" just because party "C" combined their two code bases into one. In such a case, Troll could incorporate all of your modifications, including the third party stuff, into their free version of Qt, but they couldn't put any of the third party stuff into their professional version. That section of their license would be voided for that section of code.

    At the worst, you would be disallowed from combining the two. But in that case it's a very simple matter of making a distinct library that links to the original Qt and QPLd athena widgets.
    Re:Qt Public License incompatible with itself (Score:2)
    by divec on Thursday March 23, @06:16AM EST (#260)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    At the worst, you would be disallowed from combining the two.

    Assuming that copyleft-style licenses are capable of standing up in court, that's what would happen.
    But in that case it's a very simple matter of making a distinct library that links to the original Qt and QPLed athena widgets.

    On a desktop machine it would be. A random palmtop platform might not have any facility to do dynamic linking.


    But I think the QPL is much more dangerous for applications than for libraries. As you say, generally you use a library by linking to it. Troll say that "We feel [the QPL] is particularly well suited for anyone who wants to run an Open Source project and still have the possibility to earn some money to eat from sales to closed source commercial developers." Other people on the net are starting to take that opinion. If two equivalent programs were both QPLed it would be very annoying, because there are many times when you'd want to share the code. E.g. you might want to rip xemacs's context highlighting code, modify it and then stick it into Abiword or KWord. If these were QPLed you couldn't. As a result, it becomes very hard to share new features without a complete rewrite, which is one of OSS's principal technical advantages.


    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    good (Score:1, Interesting)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:20PM EST (#15)
    Remember the old adage of "More choices is a good thing!"

    If this means KDE/Qt is more widespread, various open source OS's must be too. More uses for Linux/*BSD/open source is a Good Thing =)

    like grits? who doesn't!
    Acceleration API .... (Score:3, Redundant)
    by taniwha on Tuesday March 21, @03:24PM EST (#17)
    (User Info) http://www.taniwha.com/nospam.jpg
    So will there be an API for 2d drivers for common cards? (embedded systems seem to be using all the same chipsets ...) will they use an existing one so that existing drivers can be used? what about 3d drivers?
    Re:Acceleration API .... (Score:2, Informative)
    by Majix on Tuesday March 21, @03:44PM EST (#44)
    (User Info)

    Since this new Qt is built on top of the linux framebuffer infrastructure it will most likely use the standard frambebuffer drivers too. Currently there's at least drivers available for the Matrox cards, some TGA cards and a generic VESA 2.0 one.

    BTW, if you haven't checked out the frambuffer stuff yet, you really should, it's quite cool. You get a Tux logo while Linux boots up and you can have hi-resolution text consoles. Framebuffer support seems to be tagged experimental in the 2.2 kernels at the moment, but I've found that it works pretty well.


    Re:Acceleration API .... (Score:1)
    by zilym (zilym@SPAMNOT.asu.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @08:28PM EST (#174)
    (User Info)
    I tend to disagree with the framebuffer comments. From my experience with it, it's a lot slower than the traditional text only console and using Shift-PgUp/PgDn to scroll back and forth doesn't work quite right (pieces of text from previously displayed pages remain on screen). Yeah, the Tux penguins on boot are a nice gimmick to show off to your friends, but that's all they're really good for.

    I only place I use the framebuffer support is on my laptop with its fixed pixel LCD. The text console looks terrible with uneven stretching of pixels to match the LCD resolution -- very annoying to read. With a frame buffer, I set the console to use a mode that matches the LCD resolution, making things more readable.
    Ed Schlunder
    Re:Acceleration API .... (Score:1)
    by Wesley Felter (wesf@cs.utexas.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @08:57PM EST (#187)
    (User Info) http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/wesf/
    Since fbcon doesn't provide acceleration AFAIK, it might be interesting if they used the same loadable modules as XFree86. But I admit that I don't know anything about the X driver APIs, so maybe that is a terrible idea and someone in Norway is spewing COke through his nostrils right now...

    Or maybe they use more BeOS-style loadable accelerant modules.
    Qt...NT... (Score:0, Flamebait)
    by not Bruce Perens on Tuesday March 21, @03:25PM EST (#19)
    (User Info)
    At first glance, the name bears a striking similarity to NT Embedded...but then I realized it was Qt. If you want a real clone of NT, go for embedded GNOME: comparatively as large and just as buggy.

    Yes, I want to run KDE on Embedded Linux on my fridge. Go Qt!
    Bypassing X, good and bad (Score:1, Interesting)
    by crow on Tuesday March 21, @03:29PM EST (#24)
    (User Info) http://www.cs.dartmouth.edu/~crow/
    What we lose from bypassing X is the network transparency and multi-application windowing. Sure, you could create a non-X window manager, but I don't think that's what they're talking about here.

    The network transparency of X is very useful if you're in an environment with multiple machines; I use it all the time. Of course, starting with the shared memory extensions, there has been an increasing push to go directly to the hardware, which improves performance, but breaks remote execution.

    On the other hand, they're marketing this for embeded systems. Think of "embeded" as meaning "single application." In this case, you only want one thing on the screen, and you probably don't need remote execution, so X is just a big waste of memory. This could be really cool for a dedicated web browser (WebTV) or such.
    Re:Bypassing X, good and bad (Score:1)
    by srichter (strichter@yahoo.com) on Tuesday March 21, @05:03PM EST (#90)
    (User Info) http://www.linuxactivist.org
    It is interesting. I read the QT article last night (since KDE's site quoted it already) and me and my friend talked about the Network transparency. Maybe they will support that. The article does not mention it. My personal opinion is that for most users at home network transparency is not a big deal, since most users will only use the standard office stuff and a web browser. Remember, the goal is to bring Linux to the Desktop! Furthermore, I love the idea that Qt will bypass X. X is big and ugly (and a horror to code in). If the X standard does not wake up and include antialiasing and alpha-channeling, then someone must come up with a solution. The market asks for it, so someone supplies it. And that a commercial company is behind all of that, is actually good, since it will be better supported. Anyway, this comment I reply to was the first sane idea I read, other than "This is dumb" or "That's fucked up!" People, we should communicate smarter than that. Regards, Stephan
    -- Stephan Richter - The Linux Activist
    Eyecandy (Score:1)
    by Majix on Tuesday March 21, @03:32PM EST (#25)
    (User Info)

    It will have support for anti-aliased text and alpha-blending, two basic features missing in X11R6. It would take about a complete rewrite of the way X11 handles fonts to get anti-aliasing support, so don't expect it anytime soon :(

    I know the technical reason why we can't have anti-aliased fonts (only 1 color/font allowed etc.), but why don't we have true alpha-blending yet (either provided by X or the windowmanager)?


    Re:Eyecandy (Score:1)
    by abram_fettig (afettig@avxtantalum.STOPSENDINGMESPAM.com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:23PM EST (#66)
    (User Info) http://fettig.net/
    I believe that both Enlightenment 0.17 and Gnome 1.2 will support alpha-blending, and I believe that Enlightenment will support anti-aliased fonts. For some enlightenment screenshots, see http://www.enlightenment.org/efm.html. I couldn't find any good shots of the development version of gnome, but I've seen the anti-aliased icons in action and they look pretty good.

    More importantly, I'd like to celebrate the fact that I got my first blue screen of death on Windows 2000 today at work! I went to open a .doc file in Word, and it said that to install the necessary converter I needed the CD. So I pressed the eject button on the CD-ROM drive, and BANG! BSOD. So much for stablility...

    Re:Eyecandy (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @05:48PM EST (#114)
    GEE you think it might have been the CDROM hardware or driver that was at fault and not Windows 2000 itself? I do! You spankmaster.
    Re:Eyecandy (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:48PM EST (#140)
    Recreate that beautiful moment on your 95 or 98 box...

    Click here

    Re:Eyecandy (Score:1)
    by homoted (homoted@hotmail.com) on Wednesday March 22, @04:32AM EST (#232)
    (User Info) http://members.xoom.com/homoted
    No kidding, that URL gives this win98 box a bluescreen and a reboot. Is it a IE problem?

    If you paint your butt blue and glue your bunghole shut you just "themed" your butt, but lost the functionality.
    Re:Eyecandy (Score:1)
    by spitzak (spitzak at d two dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @07:48PM EST (#153)
    (User Info) http://www.cinenet.net/users/spitzak
    Enligtenment and Gnome "support" does not cut it, because it is on the client end. If this was sufficient X could have one graphics call (putpixel) and we could quit working because all the work is done!

    Hey, I wrote a program that did radiosity and drew the result on the screen, but I don't think anybody would claim that because of that Linux graphics now supports radiosity!

    We need advanced graphics in the server. And we need to stop making excuses.

    Re:Eyecandy (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @03:31AM EST (#230)
    As long as your major drawing/widget API's support it, there's really not much of a difference.
    Re:Eyecandy (Score:2)
    by jetson123 (br_9801 at hotmail dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:54PM EST (#87)
    (User Info)
    No, it wouldn't take a complete rewriting of the font code in X11 to get antialiased fonts. In fact, the existing font code should probably not get touched at all.

    Antialiased fonts and drawing could simply be added as a separate extension, with a separate set of requests. That way, for example, the antialiased FreeType code could probably be dropped in without a lot of changes.

    Whether to use antialiased operations probably should be left to high level toolkit libraries and/or applications, since it affects performance, color allocation, and color maps.

    For the common cases, of course, low-level client libraries could try to map non-antialiased calls onto antialiased calls.

    The open source alternative (Score:3, Informative)
    by geirt on Tuesday March 21, @03:35PM EST (#32)
    (User Info)
    Microwindows/NanoGUI is an Open Source project aimed at bringing the features of modern graphical windowing environments to smaller devices and platforms. NanoGUI allows applications to be built and tested on the Linux desktop, as well as cross-compiled for the target device.

    Both share a common graphics engine. Nano-GUI is based on an X-like protocol called Nano-X. Microwindows sports an interface similar to the ECMA APIW spec with some advancements.

    • Greg Haerr's Microwindows Page
    • Alex Holden's NanoGUI Page

    Re:The open source alternative (Score:2, Insightful)
    by Thrakkerzog on Tuesday March 21, @03:44PM EST (#42)
    (User Info) http://tick.dhs.org

    Yes, but most QT applications will be source compatable. You can't say that about any of the gui toolkits you mentioned.


    -- Thrakkerzog
    Monkey Cloning at Bucknell!
    Re:The open source alternative (Score:1)
    by HoovrBass on Tuesday March 21, @05:08PM EST (#94)
    (User Info)
    Microwindows is on it's way to supporting Fltk, IIRC. Fltk is really lightweight and supports X and Windows with source compatibility. In that case you should be able to develop on the desktop for an embedded target just like Qt is proposing.
    Re:The open source alternative (Score:1)
    by HoovrBass on Tuesday March 21, @05:13PM EST (#98)
    (User Info)
    bah, errors.

    Anyway, Fltk is LGPL'd too, so I would think that embedded leaning companies would be quick to jump on it, all OSS issues aside.
    Re:The open source alternative (Score:1)
    by Thrakkerzog on Tuesday March 21, @09:52PM EST (#211)
    (User Info) http://tick.dhs.org
    I think there are a lot more apps which use QT than apps which use fltk.

    If you want to talk about licensing issues, remember what happend with fltk about a year ago.


    -- Thrakkerzog
    Monkey Cloning at Bucknell!
    Re:The open source alternative (Score:1)
    by HoovrBass on Tuesday March 21, @10:24PM EST (#215)
    (User Info)
    Which ones would you use on an embedded system, though? I can see your point for set-tops and net type devices but I've built custom defense-oriented embedded systems using Fltk that would have benefited from not needing X, which Microwindows should take care of. No Qt app would have helped there. You'll have to remind me about Fltk. Are you talking the issue with Bill Spitzak(?). Yeah, it was close, but his company made the right decision (TM) and we all benefited. Or are you talking about something else. It's just another choice--one I find particularly suitable for custom, single app type systems--and it's really easy to use. Regards.
    Re:The open source alternative (Score:1)
    by Thrakkerzog on Tuesday March 21, @11:43PM EST (#224)
    (User Info) http://tick.dhs.org

    Here is what I am talking about.

    Either way, I'm sure some good will come out of both. :) I have quite a bit of faith in Troll Tech, so I think they will come up with something nice.


    -- Thrakkerzog
    Monkey Cloning at Bucknell!
    Nice for set-top boxes (Score:4, Insightful)
    by tjwhaynes on Tuesday March 21, @03:36PM EST (#33)
    (User Info)

    This version of QT without X looks very nice for running on Set-top boxes - anti-aliased text and all. In this sort of environment, the 'display anywhere' X protocol is just excess baggage and a more direct route to the screen makes a lot of sense, especially if you are a company intent on providing a cheap device for general home use and want to get maximum speed out of the hardware. This does of course assume that the license for QT/Embedded is reasonably set... On the flip side, just how much software are you cutting yourself off from if you don't provide X libraries? Quite a lot I suspect unless QT/Embedded is providing some extra coverage.

    Cheers,

    Toby Haynes
    Anything I post is strictly my own thoughts and doesn't necessarily have anything to do with the opinions of IBM.

    Re:Nice for set-top boxes (Score:2)
    by stripes (stripes at eng dot us dot uu dot net) on Tuesday March 21, @06:30PM EST (#131)
    (User Info) http://www.eng.us.uu.net/staff/stripes/
    [...]Set-top boxes[...] In this sort of environment, the 'display anywhere' X protocol is just excess baggage and a more direct route to the screen makes a lot of sense, especially if you are a company intent on providing a cheap device for general home use and want to get maximum speed out of the hardware.

    Actually that is where I most wish they would use X so I can have my non-embeded program display on my TV, or wrist watch, or car stereo's display, or PDA (assuming some sort of net connection). Witness the vast horde of folks wanting to do little more with the i-opener then turn it into an X terminal :-)

    Of corse I can see where the company that wants to sell a dirt cheap box would rather have a cheaper device... or want to lock me into their application.

    No mention of the license (Score:2)
    by dsplat on Tuesday March 21, @03:38PM EST (#35)
    (User Info)
    I certainly hope that the license terms are the same as for the original Qt, but I wasn't able to verify that either from the announcement or from Trolltech's own web site. I would imagine that they wouldn't intend to change course, but it would be nice to see that confirmed. If there's anyone from Trolltech reading this, an official statement on your web site would be a good thing.

    [This space intentionally left blank]
    Qt w/o X? Now this changes everything. (Score:2, Interesting)
    by truefluke (truefluke@yahoo.com) on Tuesday March 21, @03:38PM EST (#36)
    (User Info)
    This is something that I am so interested in its not even funny. X is good for sharing / pumping apps up and down a network / remote login etc. but is too much cruft for something as simple as a desktop GUI. The topic de rigeur is targeting Linux as a replacement for Windows (which I think is moronic: Linux is *really* a server but everyone will disagree and follow the trend and call me an asshole anyway. oh well!). Well, not in its present state. I mean, if Caldera's WebSpyder browser can run in DOS mode, there's no reason why Linux can't have a better GUI system that doesnt require so much twisted legacy-based logic and overhead.
    Re:Qt w/o X? Now this changes everything. (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:51PM EST (#143)
    I have the feeling that the people that don't like X never utilize it. What could be better than bringing up my desktop from one server on my local machine exactly like it would look on the server -- without any third party hacks? I'm willing to accept a little bloat for that capability.
    Down with X (Score:1)
    by theants on Tuesday March 21, @03:53PM EST (#51)
    (User Info)
    This could be a big step forward, not just for embedded applications, but for "Linux on the Desktop" in general. I feel that one of the biggest problems for inexperienced users of Linux is XFree86. There is nothing particularly wrong with X for people who are technically inclined and have time to monkey with, but someone who has little or no computing experience has little hope of using it without someone to hold their hand through it. (No matter how easy Redhat makes it to install.) I hope that GTK will eventually try this too. (Maybe Berlin will be helpful here.)
    Re:Down with X (Score:1)
    by CdotZinger on Tuesday March 21, @04:22PM EST (#65)
    (User Info)
    Absolutely. I don't have much trouble with the technical blizzblazz of X, but I'd like to have a disencruftified X (or a feature-slim replacement) to use in RAM-shortage and/or who-needs-it-anyway (ie: desktop) situations. The only reason I keep it around is for compatibility. Anyone out there working on a mini-X that provides basic application compatibility w/o all the cool stuff? I'd be working on it myself, but I know I'd screw it up and piss everyone off.

    This (what the article is about) looks very, very usefulómoreso than its makers realize, I think.


    Your mouth is like Columbus Day.
    Re:Down with X (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:09PM EST (#121)
    I want linux to have a 90 degree learning curve. It's what seperates linux users from winblow lamers and script kiddies. I don't want linux to be easy!
    Re:Down with X (Score:1)
    by karzan on Tuesday March 21, @06:25PM EST (#129)
    (User Info)
    Write this 100 times on a chalkboard, and maybe then you will understand: XFREE86 IS X, BUT X IS NOT XFREE86. X11 is a protocol. X11R6 is the standard distribution of an implementation of that protocol and the surrounding libraries and utilities. XFree86 is based on X11R6. It is not X that is hard to set up, install, or use. It is XFree86. Do you have any idea how many X servers there are out there? XFree86 is hardly the only one. If you want an X server that's easy to use, set up, etc, I'm sure there are some, and if you're not satisfied with the ones available, make a new one.

    X as a protocol is excellent. X11R6.4 is an excellent implementation of that and an excellent set of libraries. Maybe XFree is hard to set up. You can change that without using some shit protocol like Berlin that was designed by people who just want their name on something. Use X... X is good... X is great.

    Confused about details (Score:3, Insightful)
    by Pike (jdueck[at]crosswinds.net) on Tuesday March 21, @03:55PM EST (#52)
    (User Info) http://www.jdueck.org
    It sounds nice at first, but don't get the idea that Qt is replacing X on the desktop anytime soon.

    Is Qt becoming its own windowing system as well? Will you be able to run more than one Qt app and have them windowed? Where are the video card drivers coming from without X??

    Sure it's nice for embedded stuff, but a lot of people seem to have the idea that they're getting a small, fast, free X11 replacement for their desktops.

    -JD
    Re:Confused about details (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @04:22PM EST (#64)
    Where are the video card drivers coming from without X??
    Linux framebuffer driver.
    Re:Confused about details (Score:3, Interesting)
    by bmetzler (bmetzler@linuxfast.org) on Tuesday March 21, @04:45PM EST (#78)
    (User Info) http://www.geeky.org
    Howdy Joel!

    It sounds nice at first, but don't get the idea that Qt is replacing X on the desktop anytime soon.

    As others have mentioned in here, it is likely that as a consumer desktop graphical system, an X-less QT/KDE interface could fill a big need. Consumers who just want to run graphical applications locally, don't ever need the overhead that X provides.

    Is Qt becoming its own windowing system as well?

    Seeing that KDE runs on Qt, if Qt/Embedded is source compatible, then the problem is solved. KDE on non-X displays.

    Will you be able to run more than one Qt app and have them windowed?

    There are 2 answers to this. 1, with embedded devices, such as webtops, PDA's, and refrigerators, only one app is running, and therefore windowing isn't needed. For set top boxes, and consumer Linux installations, windowing can be provided by KDE, or any other Window Manager that is ported to Qt.

    Where are the video card drivers coming from without X??

    Frame-buffer devices. This is what gives you the graphical penguin on most distributions bootup now.

    Sure it's nice for embedded stuff, but a lot of people seem to have the idea that they're getting a small, fast, free X11 replacement for their desktops.

    And for those who are looking to run their Qt/KDE applications, they are.

    -Brent
    -- Are you a geek?
    OK for 2-D, perhaps, not for 3-D/games (Score:1)
    by SpinyNorman (spiny_norman@mad.scientist.com) on Tuesday March 21, @05:40PM EST (#110)
    (User Info)
    The matroxfb driver is slightly accelerated for 2-D, but bottom line is that the framebuffer API is too low level to really allow for much acceleration anyway.

    What's really going to limit this to embedded use though is the lack of accelerated 3-D (forget GL Quake!). OpenGL via DRI in XFree 4.0 should rock!

    What would be really nice would be if the accelerated drivers for XFree could also be used for Qt or other graphical subsystems, rather than having to rely on a poor common denomenator like the framebuffer.

    Re:Confused about details (Score:2, Interesting)
    by drew (cattand at charlie.cns.iit.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @07:58PM EST (#156)
    (User Info) http://www.iit.edu/~cattand
    Seeing that KDE runs on Qt, if Qt/Embedded is source compatible, then the problem is solved. KDE on non-X displays.

    whoa... hold on a second here. i haven't looked at the kde code enough to prove this, but i kinda doubt that kde uses only qt. im pretty sure kde uses a lot of X calls as well. so if you have this new qt which doesn't use X, kde will not automatically compile for you. i may be wrong about this, and i would appreciate if someone would verify this for me, but i don't think kde can do all of the things it does based solely on the qt libs.

    but that's actually my secondary point. the more important part is this: For set top boxes, and consumer Linux installations, windowing can be provided by KDE, or any other Window Manager that is ported to Qt.

    now this i do know enough about to comment on, because i have worked with window manager code before. just porting a window manager to qt will do squat for you. in the most basic sense, the window manager does very little really. all it does is give you the means to move your windows around and resize them, and maybe close/shade/iconify them. X is what actually does the work of creating and displaying the windows. the wondow manager uses X library calls to modify the windows state, and do the other things it does. take away x, and oops! our wondow manager is now useless. want proof? run x without starting a windowmanager. see, you still get all of your windows, you just can't move them around. and you lose al of the little control options your window manager gives you. now try starting your window manager without x? what's that? you cant? ohhh.... ok, this isn't really proof, but it does illustrate my point. with this qt, the best you could do is a sort of MDI thing. you would write one big qt app that swallows smaller ones, kinda like the gnome control center. but this doesn't completely work, because all of your pre written qt apps wouldn't run inside this monster app. you'd need to rewrite them at least a little bit to make them compatible with an MDI scheme.

    > Sure it's nice for embedded stuff, but a lot of people seem to have the idea that they're getting a small, fast, free X11 replacement for their desktops.
    And for those who are looking to run their Qt/KDE applications, they are.


    nope, sorry. you are right about the framebuffer thing providing the video drivers, but it doesn't provide the windowing system for you, and kde, while it is an excellent desktop, is not a windowing system. so at best, you'd be able to run one app fullscreen on each of your 6 or so consoles, or run screen and switch between n different fullscreen apps, just like you would use it now to switch between a bunch of curses programs running on the console. (or the previously mentioned MDI app, with it's custom "applets")
    Re:Confused about details (Score:1)
    by Hawke (kilpatds at erols dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:37PM EST (#179)
    (User Info) http://www.erols.com/kilpatds
    Brent wrote:
    For set top boxes, and consumer Linux installations, windowing can be provided by KDE, or any other Window Manager that is ported to QT.
    That's a little harder than it seems. kwm (the KDE window manager) has communicate fairly tightly with the X server. You can't write a window manager purely in terms of the functionality QT provides, you have to speak Xlib.

    For there to be an Embedded QT window manager, QT would have to add a significant chunk of functionality beyond what would be required to draw widgets into a framebuffer.

    Brilliant idea. (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:59PM EST (#54)
    This is an excellent idea and I'm surprised no one else has thought of it before. I wish the Trolls the best of luck with this venture.
    what niche does this fulfill? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @04:08PM EST (#55)
    What kind of device would use QT/framebuffer?

    It'd have a decent graphics display and chipset (relatively expensive) but also have very low cost hardware behind it that would be bogged by even the leanest X. But the computing hardware can't be so low cost that the CPU/memory can't support QT and the C++ QT applications. If a cheaper lower resolution graphics display was used, then you probably don't need the overhead of QT.

    It seems to be such a narrow niche. I'm having difficulting trying to imagine such a beast. Anybody got any ideas? (Not a flame, I'm just not being imaginative enough :)


    X or no X? Choice is good! (Score:2, Interesting)
    by Florian (paragram@gmx.net) on Tuesday March 21, @04:10PM EST (#56)
    (User Info) http://userpage.fu-berlin.de/~cantsin/index.cgi
    The question here is not whether framebuffer-based GUI Toolkits render X11 obsolete. There are many reasons why X11 will remain the better graphics subsystem for workstations:
    • X11 has network transparency
    • X11 runs in the userspace, so misconfiguration (or just switching your video card or screen) doesn't lock up the system
    • XFree 4.0 has many highend features which framebuffer-based GUIs will lack: multihead support, truetype support, modular drivers, 3D/OpenGL etc.etc.
    • X11 is GUI toolkit agnostic. You can run KDE, Gnome, GNUstep, Tk, Motif... apps under one X11 desktop, which you can't on a framebuffer-based desktop
    That said, I find Qt/embedded an excellent idea, moreover in the light of the recent progress in the efforts to port Linux to Psion PDAs and WinCE palmtops. For such devices, X11 is bloated. It will be nice to have Qt/KDE applications such as KLyX available on PDAs in the not-so-distant future. I hope the GTK/Gnome folks take up the idea and do the same with GTK/GDK, hopefully in a way that makes it possible to run both Qt- and GTK-based software under the same framebuffer-based GUI.

    These developments are important in a time where companies like Samsung are working on Linux-based PDAs with proprietary user interfaces and proprietary applications on top of the kernel. Although it's good that Linux becomes popular for settop boxes, PDA and other embedded devices, it would be a substantial drawback for the cause of Free Software if proprietary GUIs and userspaces would prevail on such systems. So Trolltech's move deserves applause from our community.

    Re:X or no X? Choice is good! (Score:2)
    by jetson123 (br_9801 at hotmail dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:48PM EST (#82)
    (User Info)
    Qt is a proprietary toolkit. It may come with a more or less liberal license, but it's still owned and controlled by a single company. And, in fact, it appears that Troll Tech has opposed free reimplentations of Qt based on their API specifications in the past.

    Two truly open source GUIs for embedded systems are MicroWindows and NanoGUI. You can find more information at http://microwindows.censoft.com/. There are lots of other GUI libraries that can access the frame buffer as well. A port of GTK+ to SVGAlib or libggi probably wouldn't be all that hard either.

    Re:X or no X? Choice is good! (Score:1, Interesting)
    by MassacrE (mass@ufl.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @05:39PM EST (#109)
    (User Info)
    Just to clarify:

    X11 runs in the userspace, so misconfiguration (or just switching your video card or screen) doesn't lock up the system

    X11 can crash the system just as bad as if it was kernel space, i.e. on NT. The actual X server, which controls the hardware, runs setuid root. Indeed, with the new Direct Rendering Architecture it is not possible to use the direct access modes without being root.

    If this was a microkernel and the X server used a kernel interface for controlling the hardware, it would be one thing - but XFree is directly banging on the hardware, and has the ability to bang anywhere in memory. A bad pointer can still lock the machine, as can a bad PCI setup.

    XFree 4.0 has many highend features which framebuffer-based GUIs will lack: multihead support, truetype support, modular drivers, 3D/OpenGL etc.etc.

    Windows CE has truetype font support, some have video output - and they are framebuffer devices.

    Some even have DirectX support

    X11 is GUI toolkit agnostic. You can run KDE, Gnome, GNUstep, Tk, Motif... apps under one X11 desktop, which you can't on a framebuffer-based desktop

    You can too! There is absolutely no reason why you wouldn't be able to do this - try it out with the X framebuffer server!

    The reason you would not be able to do this is because having the same application loaded in memory three times and using three different functionally equivelant library sets is dumb. The only reason this happens is because X is toolkit agnostic, and spent twenty years without ever having a decent toolkit. So you have a native X protocol version of biff, a xaw version, an xaw3d version, an openwindows enhanced version, a version packaged with enlightenment, gnomebiff, kbuff, etc etc.

    Re:X or no X? Choice is good! (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:32PM EST (#132)
    X11 can crash the system just as bad as if it was kernel space, i.e. on NT. The actual X server, which controls the hardware, runs setuid root. Indeed, with the new Direct Rendering
                                  Architecture it is not possible to use the direct access modes without being root.


    I've never had an X crash that I can't recover by simply plugging in my serial terminal into the back of my PC and restarting X. The DRI is specifically *for* running direct 3d hw apps as non-root users - if yuu can't use it in this fashion, you DRI settings are probably wrong - note that you still have to tell it /which/ non-root users. Or maybe you're confusing the Utah-glx or old-glide rendering structures with the DRI (and even on old-glide : addgroup hw3dusers ; chown root.hw3dusers /dev/3dfx ; add 3d-hw using users to group hw3dusers)?

    If this was a microkernel and the X server used a kernel interface for controlling the hardware, it would be one thing - but XFree is directly banging on the hardware, and has the ability to bang anywhere in memory.

    'Fraid not - It may leave your video HW in a dodgy state, but it shouldn't be able to directly violate segmentation as if X were some sort of amiga program, even if running as root (malicious trojans in the source are another matter, since they could explicitly override by writing to /dev/kmem.)

                                Windows CE has truetype font support, some have video output - and they are framebuffer devices.

    Do you know what you're talking about, or are you jut trolling?
    WinCE devices are not necessarily flat framebuffers by any means. At least in the linux/amiga/unix arena, when someone says framebuffer, they tend to mean, quite specifically, a /dev/fb* device that is a flat page of memory that maps directly to a graphical display.

                          an xaw3d version, an openwindows enhanced version, a version packaged with enlightenment, gnomebiff, kbuff, etc etc.

    Personally, I prefer diversity. I would HATE to be coding for a platform where there was only the one MS way.
    Re:X or no X? Choice is good! (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @08:07PM EST (#163)
    The point was that it *could* crash your system as setuid root. Not that it does all that often.
    Re:X or no X? Choice is good! (Score:1)
    by divec on Tuesday March 21, @08:34PM EST (#178)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    X11 can crash the system just as bad as if it was kernel space

    Any idea if this is true using xfree on GNU/HURD?
    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    don't be silly (Score:2, Informative)
    by Lazy Jones (LazyJones@atari.org) on Tuesday March 21, @06:22PM EST (#127)
    (User Info) http://pobox.com/~mjy
    As others have pointed out, the userspace argument isn't true. I have to add that:
    • framebuffer-based apps don't necessarily miss out on multihead, truetype, modular driver and OpenGL support. Especially OpenGL and Truetype are already available.
    • It has advantages to have a GUI toolkit that is display driver agnostic. QT apps will compile for both X and the frame buffer device. The claim that you can't have many GUI toolkits on the framebuffer device is also simply wrong - you just need to port the toolkits or use an X server or X protocol proxy on the framebuffer device.
    • It is a common misconception that network transparency must be built in the display server/driver. It's very simple to add it later, as the X servers for other OSes prove, and much more efficient. Why do X applications need to convert all GUI-API calls to a protocol suitable for network transport, send the data over a Unix domain socket and convert it back to internal API calls for the X server? This is a great waste of resources and absolutely unnecessary.
    • X has very bad limitations that may be fixed only using X protocol extensions (which have the drawback of not being supported by existing software)
    • X wastes memory

    Re:don't be silly (Score:1, Informative)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:50PM EST (#142)
    Oh for pity's sake. The shared memory stuff (MIT-SHM) has been in X for years. Everyone sane uses it. XFree86 doesn't convert everything local to UDP and back again, hasn't done for a long, long time.

    X is designed to be an extensible framework, like OpenGL. This is a GOOD THING, and is why both the OpenGL and X APIs remain clean, while Win32 and Direct3D are horrible kludges.

    X is actually relatively memory efficient comapred to citrix winframe or the like. A common problem is that people think that the X process memory size quoted in ps or top is correct - actually, since the whole video card is mapped into X's process space, the process size includes the entire gfx mem on the card, as well as it's control registers. This can be in excess of 16Mbyte - but this is not subtracted from the total main RAM in use on the system.

    Re:don't be silly (Score:1, Interesting)
    by Lazy Jones (LazyJones@atari.org) on Wednesday March 22, @04:46AM EST (#233)
    (User Info) http://pobox.com/~mjy
    MIT-SHM is useful for transferring bitmaps, but only programs that need to do this quickly bother to use it. Most applications transfer their icons etc. without it. It isn't used for common tasks such as text output or mouse input (well, last time I checked).

    Calling X an extensible framework is a bad excuse for holding on to a design that is too limited from the beginning (if it's so extensible, where's the antialiased truetype font support that has been available for so many other GUI frameworks for such a long time? Perhaps no applications would support an extension?).

    X required in excess of 16MB on 1MB video cards and it wastes a lot of memory in case programs try to use pointless "optimizations" like loading pixmaps into server memory because it's the fastest way to move them on your *local* display (pointless, because a better protocol could have avoided this waste).

    Re:don't be silly (Score:1)
    by twixel on Wednesday March 22, @05:36AM EST (#236)
    (User Info)
    It's very simple to add it later, as the X servers for other OSes prove, and much more efficient.
    X servers for other OS's don't prove anything (after all they are using the built-in network transparency of X). Let's take a real world example: remote viewing of NT sessions. The NT GDI was not written with network transparency in mind. So if it is, as you claim, " very simple" to add it later, why are all the solutions so clunky? VNC, PC Anywhere and Citrix don't even come close to the smoothness of X.
    Why do X applications need to convert all GUI-API calls to a protocol suitable for network transport, send the data over a Unix domain socket and convert it back to internal API calls for the X server?
    Why not? The overhead is small. IPC is pretty efficient. The only way to get more efficient is to move the display system into the kernel (ala Winxx and WinNT). It would save you context switches. If you run your display driver/Windowing system in a separate process, you still have to pass your command via IPC ( domain socket, shared memory).
    Re:don't be silly (Score:1, Interesting)
    by Lazy Jones (LazyJones@atari.org) on Wednesday March 22, @03:39PM EST (#259)
    (User Info) http://pobox.com/~mjy
    X servers for other OS's don't prove anything (after all they are using the built-in network transparency of X). Let's take a real world example: remote viewing of NT sessions. The NT GDI was not written with network transparency in mind. So if it is, as you claim, " very simple" to add it later, why are all the solutions so clunky? VNC, PC Anywhere and Citrix don't even come close to the smoothness of X.
    X servers for other OSes just implement the X protocol, which is fine for that sole purpose (network transparency), but not for a local display. The solutions which you claim to be clunky just implement a simpler protocol, but they do not compete in the local display arena anyway. The simple protocols have other advantages - you can use them with very little memory (my DOSVNC viewer fits in a 400KB disk space comfortably, with all necessary drivers and runs with ~1MB RAM), so they trade off speed for size and stability (don't tell me how stable X is - I've had enough X crashes, on workstations and even NCD X terminals).
    The only way to get more efficient is to move the display system into the kernel (ala Winxx and WinNT). It would save you context switches.
    No, there are many ways to implement more efficient protocols for local displays than the X protocol, which is "optimized" for network transport and architecture-independent. Then again, drivers are a kernel issue, so the display system belongs there anyway.

    The essential questions are:

    • Is the built-in network transparency of X necessary? Answer: no, it can be added later, basing the whole design on network transparency makes sense only for environments where network transparency is actually used most of the time (and that excludes most PCs/workstations these days), in all other cases it isn't worth the performance degradation and design complexity.
    • Is X flexible enough to support modern hardware's capabilities without a messy heap of extensions that aren't accessible to existing programs? No, it isn't - e.g. I can't even switch the bitmap depth of the display without restarting all applications (this could have been fixed a long time ago, but for various reasons it hasn't been considered worth it, I suppose - the visuals would have to be "emulated" using quantization, dithering etc., since older applications can't be told that the depth has changed).
    If X was stable and efficient, the disadvantages could be tolerated, but unfortunately it is neither. It's one of the major causes for the slow adoption of Unix/Linux in the desktop market. It's time to think about a new design, it can't be too difficult (look at BeOS) and X servers for other display systems are easy to write, so you could still use your favourite X programs, like xfontsel (blergh).
    Re:X or no X? Choice is good! (Score:1)
    by Wesley Felter (wesf@cs.utexas.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @09:08PM EST (#192)
    (User Info) http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/wesf/

    X11 runs in the userspace, so misconfiguration (or just switching your video card or screen) doesn't lock up the system


    But X runs as root, while framebuffer apps don't have to. Likewise, X bangs the hardware directly, while framebuffer apps don't. So I think framebuffer apps should be safer than X (unless you are running the fbcon driver for X, of course).
    Similarities to Berlin or GGI? (Score:5, Interesting)
    by Thag on Tuesday March 21, @04:16PM EST (#60)
    (User Info) http://www.users.fast.net/~acheson/
    I'm wondering how this would compare to the Berlin windowing system or GGI? With the goal of running embedded, I'd guess QT's new system is simpler, and less cross-platform. Basically a way to get QT apps ported to handhelds really quickly, rather than a general replacement for X. I'll freely admit, though, that I don't know much about GUI framework design. Anyone out there in the know and willing to comment?

    I have to wonder, though, how many X apps will really work well on a handheld? It's a different environment, after all, with somewhat different inputs and uses. Just dumping X apps to a PDA would be like the approach MS used for WinCE, and it didn't really work.

    Jon
    All opinions expressed herein are my own, and not those of my employers, who are appalled.
    Re:Similarities to Berlin or GGI? (Score:2)
    by Christopher B. Brown (cbbrowne@hex.net) on Tuesday March 21, @06:48PM EST (#141)
    (User Info) http://www.hex.net/~cbbrowne/linux.html
    There would be similarity to Berlin, but not to GGI.

    "Embedded QT" represents an abstract API for constructing GUI apps. That does parallel Berlin.

    GGI represents a physical API that abstracts away only the lowest level of "talking to hardware."

    The net result is that you might want to run "Embedded QT" on top of GGI, much as you have to run Berlin on top of GGI.

    In the process, it's pretty evident that you'll lose the ability to have remotable network applications with "Embedded QT." (Berlin has no such loss, as it runs atop CORBA...)

    The thing that I don't see any information on is what they're doing about font rendering. That's one of the major things that X does which a framebuffer doesn't do...
    Those who do not understand Unix are condemned to reinvent it, poorly. -- Henry Spencer

    Re:Similarities to Berlin or GGI? (Score:1)
    by Hawke (kilpatds at erols dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:21PM EST (#169)
    (User Info) http://www.erols.com/kilpatds
    Berlin attempts to replace the X server. GCI attempts to replace how graphical programs access the hardware. As I understand it, Embedded QT attempts to provide a widget set for the hardware.

    Berlin might be implimented in terms of Embedded QT, which might be implimented on top of GCI. Well, not really, but I hope that got the idea across.

    Re:Similarities to Berlin or GGI? (Score:2)
    by Christopher B. Brown (cbbrowne@hex.net) on Tuesday March 21, @10:30PM EST (#216)
    (User Info) http://www.hex.net/~cbbrowne/linux.html
    Nope, that doesn't get the idea across. Berlin attempts to replace the GUI libraries like QT, Xt, GTK, ...

    Berlin depends on there being some lower-level display substrate like GGI.

    It would make sense to implement Berlin atop X; implementing it atop QT, of whatever form, would not make sense.

    What could make sense would be to implement Berlin (or, by the same token, X or Display Postscript) atop whatever low level framebuffer scheme lies underneath Embedded QT. But I suspect that this layer will more closely resemble GGI than anything else...
    Those who do not understand Unix are condemned to reinvent it, poorly. -- Henry Spencer

    Re:Similarities to Berlin or GGI? (Score:1)
    by Felinoid (jeffery@[website_url]) on Wednesday March 22, @03:10AM EST (#228)
    (User Info) http://www.meowpawjects.com/
    I would hope that programmers would go byond just compiling QT apps.
    While WinCE and the lesser known PenWindows were miserable failures in moving Windows to the PDA PenGeos made the move quite nicely and continued to move into cell phones where it lives today.

    The key diffrence (byond Zoomer dying and nearly taking Geoworks with them) is that as Geos moves from platform to platform it changes to take advantage of that platform. The apps also changed.

    I would hope thats the plan with QT. It's not binary compatable but sorce compatable. I suspect we are expected to modify existing programs for the imbeded system and not run them as is. Anything in binary form for the PDA should be a full port.

    The use of the framebuffer suggests to me that porting is left up to the Linux kernel and taken out of the hands of QT. A rather smart move.
    For anything that bugs you.. Rant at Meow BBS
    Good first step (Score:1, Funny)
    by ubertroll on Tuesday March 21, @04:21PM EST (#62)
    (User Info)
    Getting rid of X is a good start. Next, we have to get rid of Qt, and then there's only Linux left to get rid of. Let's do it!
    The Tool for the job (Score:1)
    by jjr (jjr@theotherside.com) on Tuesday March 21, @04:23PM EST (#67)
    (User Info) http://theotherside.com/
    I love X. But this would be great for the embedded solutions. The small footprint is ideal for some projects that I would like to start we just have to see about the licensing issues and time.

    http://theotherside.com/dvd/
    Help fight against MPAA and Support the EFF
    Installers (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @04:24PM EST (#68)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    The first thing I thought of was "this would make a better GUI installer for Linux". So far, only the Mandrake GUI installer has worked on my system. And only SuSE worked on my friend's system. Everything else completely bombs. The reason for this is X. My card cannot be probed, thus, not detected automatically. My friend's card doesn't have a VGA mode, so it can't use the default.

    An embedded Qt would allow distributions to use their own video detection routines. I don't know about frame buffers, but it seems that having two ways of making a GUI installer covers more bases than just the X way. Just load the library that's appropriate and use the same installer.
    I want X-lite (Score:2)
    by Anomalous Canard on Tuesday March 21, @04:28PM EST (#71)
    (User Info)
    I'm not sure if this is what Trolltech is talking about, but I want a display server that doesn't take over the whole screen. I want full screen text mode consoles to use with mutt. I don't want an Xterm that uses a hard to read font and useless crap on the screen to click on with a mouse that takes my hands off the keyboard. And I want to be able to launch a graphical browser from an email using the framebuffer without all the overhead of X and either Gnome or KDE. It's just way too much stuff.
    Anomalous: inconsistent with or deviating from what is usual, normal, or expected
    Canard: a false or unfounded report or story
    Re:I want X-lite (Score:2, Informative)
    by I R A Aggie on Tuesday March 21, @05:03PM EST (#91)
    (User Info)
    I don't want an Xterm that uses a hard to read font

    You mean like xterm -fn '-bitstream-courier-bold-r-normal-*-*-220-*-*-m-*-iso8859-1' &?

    James


    Re:I want X-lite (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:06PM EST (#191)
    :%s/bitstream/adobe/

    it a LOT more readable.
    Re:I want X-lite (Score:1)
    by Anomalous Canard on Wednesday March 22, @09:00AM EST (#246)
    (User Info)
    Ahhh, but my mini-notebook only has a (tiny) 640x480 screen. I won't be able to fit an 80x25 xterm in that at 22 points. Anyway, I *like* the console fonts.
    Anomalous: inconsistent with or deviating from what is usual, normal, or expected
    Canard: a false or unfounded report or story
    But I want my fridge console in X... (Score:1)
    by Flerp on Tuesday March 21, @04:30PM EST (#72)
    (User Info)
    Ok, I can sympathize with not wanting the overhead of X, but if you can afford the overhead of Qt, single chip capacities arent that far off supporting X too...

    And, hey, while we are at it, sure, a webbrowser on a toaster must make sense in someones mind, but what _I_ want is my toaster, fridge and oven consoles on my DESKTOP! Which means X!
    This is seriously kick ass. (Score:2, Insightful)
    by be-fan on Tuesday March 21, @04:37PM EST (#74)
    (User Info)
    This is not only great for embedded systems, but for desktops.
    A) The whole X server over network paradigm isn't really needed for a local desktop (most of the time) by utilizing the framebuffer and hardware acceleration, this is provide an increadible peformance and memory usage boost. One reason I use BeOS that its GUI is so ridiculously responsive. Meanwhile KDE on a PII300 and TNT chugs along. Ever open up SysV init editor and resize the window? Talk 'bout major redraw.
    I really hope they put in support for writing directly to the framebuffer. That way OpenGL could be put on it and we'd be in desktop heaven.
    B) Its X compatible so no re-writing apps to support a next Gen interface!
    C) It dumps all the X stuff that is in qt and is redundant anyway on a Qt system.
    I think they seriously have the right idea with this release. Finaly, a great kernel like Linux gets a good windowing system to go along. If this is GPLed, it will not make its biggest splash in the embedded market. It will make a splash in the desktop market, because even if Trolltech doesn't have the right focus for this product, I'm sure lots of media obsessed users pissed of by poor interactive performance do. This is seriously cool. This also bodes well for a DirectX type API on Linux. Think about it! It support hardware acceleration, so SDL could be put on it and have a very direct route to the graphics hardware. If basic SDL-style input services are put in, and OpenAL plays nice with it, you have a Direct, low-overhead API that is cross platform to boot!

    "Any sufficiantly advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" -Arthur C. Clarke
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:1)
    by jonabbey (jonabbey@burrow.org) on Tuesday March 21, @05:08PM EST (#95)
    (User Info) http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2

    A) The whole X server over network paradigm isn't really needed for a local desktop (most of the time) by utilizing the framebuffer and hardware acceleration, this is provide an increadible peformance and memory usage boost. One reason I use BeOS that its GUI is so ridiculously responsive. Meanwhile KDE on a PII300 and TNT chugs along. Ever open up SysV init editor and resize the window? Talk 'bout major redraw. I really hope they put in support for writing directly to the framebuffer. That way OpenGL could be put on it and we'd be in desktop heaven.

    I don't think XFree86 really has any significant overhead due to the X server network support, anymore. As others have pointed out whenever this topic comes up, local clients talk to the server through UNIX domain sockets (i.e., no TCP/IP involved), pipes, and shared memory. XFree86 is about as efficient as you can get while still having a separate process responsible for actually managing the display.

    For embedded applications, it might make sense to have support for a system in which one process can serve as both application and as framebuffer driver, to reduce overhead, but in general this cost of the context switch is overwhelmingly outweighed by the convenience of having multiple applications able to put forth windows on the same screen, and by the convenience of not allowing everyone's code to have a chance at trashing registers on the video card, etc.

    As far as DirectX-style API's, isn't DRI on XFree86 4.0 working quite well?

    What I wish X had was an API for creating and switching between multiple video contexts, at different resolutions and color depths, the way Windows does. I'd love to be able to configure Wine to create an 8bit 640x400 video display context for playing StarCraft, rather than having to kill the X server, edit XFree86.conf and restart the whole thing in low-res/color mode.

    There's plenty that's wrong with X and could use fixing, but the basic decision to use a separate server that can be communicated with over a network is not one of them.


    Ganymede, a GPL'ed metadirectory for UNIX http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:2)
    by be-fan on Tuesday March 21, @05:15PM EST (#100)
    (User Info)
    No, X is really not very efficiant for local devices. BeOS and MacOS X display servers are efficiant, X is nowhere in that ball park. Actually, I didn't realize if embedded Qt does not support multiple windows (does it?) I know that BeOS certainly does and its graphics driver is loaded as a dynamic module. Having a client/server has nothing to do with it. Second, DirectX style is not only 3D. 2D graphics and input are also part of it. X has pretty bad 2D performance, and DRI is a pretty big hack. I'm saying that on the desktop there is no reason to have X (which is bloated and offers a lot of useless features (of the desktop anyway)) when something lighter and more efficiant can be put in place.
    PS> Network transparency should be a much higher level service. In a desktop environment, stuff like X and OpenGL and DCOM and SOM disgust me for their performance robbing network transparency.
    "Any sufficiantly advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" -Arthur C. Clarke
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:1)
    by jonabbey (jonabbey@burrow.org) on Tuesday March 21, @05:24PM EST (#102)
    (User Info) http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2

    Do you have any evidence for these assertions? I can believe that BeOS's deeply multithreaded kernel and display logic is more efficient than X, and I believe that MacOS X's Quartz API provides some fancy operations that would be expensive to emulate in X, but you're really making a lot of sweeping statements here.

    I happen to use X Windows over a network all the time, both at work on my X terminal to several machines in our computer center, and at home when I'm doing work there. If having X able to support those uses were a terribly heavy burden for the desktop, I could see moving away from it, but I don't believe that it is.

    I'd love to be educated as to the precise technical factors that you believe make an X desktop so painfully slow, but I haven't heard any yet.


    Ganymede, a GPL'ed metadirectory for UNIX http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:3, Insightful)
    by be-fan on Tuesday March 21, @09:02PM EST (#189)
    (User Info)
    I'm talking about efficiancy. If you look at the BeOS and MacOS APIs a lot of what they do is very efficiant code-wise. I'll speak for BeOS because thats what I use most often. The BeOS display server is just a thread in the app server (the BeOS is a microkernel.) The connection between the app and the server is just some really efficient message passing between two threads. It leaves out a lot of the negotiation and protocol stuff needed with X. In the app server, it is drawn using the graphics driver which is loaded as a dynamic link library. I don't know too much about MacOSX, but I do know that it too uses a light weight window process. Also, there is very little cruft in the BeOS window manager. It is not nearly as feature heavy, and a lot of the layers such as toolkits and window managers and desktop environments are not there. Sure it can't do any of the network transparent stuff, but it really isn't meant to. Aside from technical factors, X is slow from experiance. There are noticable problems with redraw in KDE, and it just doesn't feel snappy. Its on par with windows 98 and slightly slower than 95. Of course, since I come from BeOS, it is painfully slow. I've seen what a light, well designed interface can do. For example, BeOS has a busy cursor, but I've only seen it once when running a benchmarking app. Huge menues load instantly, complex views almost never have redraw problems, and there is never a time when you feel like you're waiting for the sytem to respond to you.
    "Any sufficiantly advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" -Arthur C. Clarke
    How To Speed Up X (Score:1)
    by jonabbey (jonabbey@burrow.org) on Tuesday March 21, @05:48PM EST (#113)
    (User Info) http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2

    Just thought I'd offer a tidbit on X performance from the XFree86 FAQ. They recommend that you run the X server on Linux at nice priority -10 so the X server gets first priority for interactive use.

    It would be interesting to see if doing this would make any impact on your feelings on X.


    Ganymede, a GPL'ed metadirectory for UNIX http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:1, Informative)
    by spitzak (spitzak at d two dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:01PM EST (#159)
    (User Info) http://www.cinenet.net/users/spitzak
    Once again, I don't blame the "network transparency" or the client/server architecture.

    The problem is HORRIBLE Xlib design.

    Lets see how you draw a red dot on the screen in Xlib:

    1. fill in an XColor structure with the r,g,b and call XAllocColor (1 round trip to server). (this could fail, in which case you have to do hundreds of round trips to find the closest color or make a new colormap, but I'll ingore that to be fair).

    2. Create a "gc" (probably 0 round trips in modern Xlib? But info is sent to the server).

    3. Set the foreground color in that gc (probably done locally).

    4. Do XPutPixel, passing that gc and the window over the wire. (more info sent to server)

    Now lets see what the calls would be in an interface designed by a semi-talented monkey:

    1. "set_color(r,g,b)": info sent to server. Size of info: 3 bytes.

    2. "draw_pixel(x,y)": info sent to server, size of info: 2 numbers.

    3. DONE! Total number of round trips: ZERO. And I suspect the amount of info is about 1/4 as much sent over the wire, so the buffer fills up only 1/4 as often. Overall improvement in efficiency: perhaps 10,000 or more, depending on the overhead of a round trip.

    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:1)
    by ethereal on Tuesday March 21, @06:04PM EST (#117)
    (User Info) http://www.kleinbottle.com/

    What I wish X had was an API for creating and switching between multiple video contexts, at different resolutions and color depths, the way Windows does. I'd love to be able to configure Wine to create an 8bit 640x400 video display context for playing StarCraft, rather than having to kill the X server, edit XFree86.conf and restart the whole thing in low-res/color mode.

    Amen to that. The one thing I miss about Windows is the ability to switch resolutions without stopping everything else that's going on. With the old 14" monitor that I have, in order to get enough screen real estate I have to run at a ridiculously low refresh rate. This doesn't bother me too much, but my wife notices the waviness/jumpiness a lot more. If we could swap video modes as easily as in Windows, X on Linux would be about perfect for our needs.

    God: "Here's a quarter, kid, get yourself a real operating system." [ducks flames] ;)

    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:1)
    by vanye (SPAMONoffer@sgi.com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:00PM EST (#157)
    (User Info) http://reality.sgi.com/offer/
    Most of the requirements for switching depths are because most low-end PC graphics cards do not support multiple pixel formats at once.

    If they did this (like SGIs have done for years), then the only reason for swithing would be to change resolutions...and that's less interesting.

    Since the screen size and depth are encoded in the X protocol there would be real problems in changing this...

    So you want to spend years of resouce across all the major X vendors becuase you don't have a decent monitor ? I'd be cheaper for me to just by you one :-)
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:2)
    by be-fan on Tuesday March 21, @09:05PM EST (#190)
    (User Info)
    What does that have to do with it? Every major PC windowing system aside from X can switch color depths on the fly.
    "Any sufficiantly advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" -Arthur C. Clarke
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:03PM EST (#160)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    Why don't you guys run a separate X session? Then you can have two resolutions and desktops at the same time (something Windows can't do).
    Re:This is seriously kick ass. (Score:2)
    by Inoshiro on Tuesday March 21, @05:53PM EST (#115)
    (User Info) http://www.thock.com/Dylan/
    "I really hope they put in support for writing directly to the framebuffer. That way OpenGL could be put on it and we'd be in desktop heaven."

    This is why the Vesa frame buffer + X11 frame buffer server exist. The problem is that it is totally non-accelerated. X11 uses the XAA (X Acceleration Architecture), which is a gain. True, redraws are somewhat expensive, but that's mainly because the app is written poorly.

    Use Slackware -- BSD style init scripts :-)

    "B) Its X compatible so no re-writing apps to support a next Gen interface!"

    It's QT compatible. I'm a GNOME guy. :-/
    ---
    Internet Explorer (n): Another bug, that is, a feature that can't be turned off, in Windows.† See also: monopoly.
    Food for thought: Qt on MacOS X (Score:1)
    by Droog on Tuesday March 21, @04:41PM EST (#76)
    (User Info) http://www.mindspring.com/~davidrugge/index.html
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but if Embedded Qt doesn't require X, then Qt apps should work on MacOS X without having to also run an X server. Of course you still wouldn't get all of the nifty features of Quartz, but on the other hand you wouldn't have to run an X server to use Koffice either.
    Re:Food for thought: Qt on MacOS X (Score:2)
    by TheGreek (gro@ytrapgal.keerg) on Tuesday March 21, @05:04PM EST (#93)
    (User Info) http://lagparty.org/~greek/
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but if Embedded Qt doesn't require X, then Qt apps should work on MacOS X without having to also run an X server.

    You're half right. You wouldn't need an X server, but you'd need Linux framebuffer support, which Mac OS X doesn't have, and isn't likely to have.

    Looks like a nifty hack for Darwin, though....

    Re:Food for thought: Qt on MacOS X (Score:2)
    by Arandir (arandir-at-usermode-dot-org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:20PM EST (#168)
    (User Info) http://www.usermode.org/
    The Trolls are hiring Mac developers. Hmmm...
    What? Bypass X?? (Score:1)
    by magnetx11 on Tuesday March 21, @04:49PM EST (#84)
    (User Info) http://magnetx.com
    You mean someone is trying to bypass the standard bloatware(X)? How dare them.
    Will this improve installation programs? (Score:1)
    by astrotek (spamsucks) on Tuesday March 21, @04:53PM EST (#86)
    (User Info) http://www.astrotek.net
    Having an install disk with qt and the framebuffer device would make graphical installs one step easier. Correct me if I'm wrong but this seems like a good thing =)

    Now we just need gtk to do the same thing
    Darn Somebody With Some Brains (Score:1)
    by Grimlord on Tuesday March 21, @04:55PM EST (#88)
    (User Info)
    This is exactly what linux needs to push it to the desktop. I have been saying this all along. X is crap in a single user mode environment. If you wish to have fast graphics which is required by games you have to get at the hardware.
    Told you so... (Score:2, Insightful)
    by Chouser (chouser@bluweb.com) on Tuesday March 21, @05:02PM EST (#89)
    (User Info) http://bluweb.com/
    Well, maybe I didn't tell you, but I predicted this. It's only a matter of time until we see the same thing for gtk/gnome.

    I figured this would happen once I saw what KDE and gnome were trying to do, namely isolate applications from X completely. Older apps communicate with graphics hardware via X. This meant that graphics hardware could be swapped in and out (and even across the network!). But now both KDE and gnome (with the help of GTK and QT, respecively) have become a complete layer between apps and X. This means it should be possible for KDE and gnome to completely skip X, and go straight to the hardware. The advent of the Linux frame buffer makes this even easier.

    There were hints of this already in projects like the now defunct Harmony (FreeQT) in how it handled TrueType fonts.

    As others have said, choice is great. It isn't (yet) time for X to die completely, being able to skip the rather large and complex called Xwindows will often be a great boon.

    I hope that at some point, all gnome and KDE apps will be run-time (or maybe shared-link time, which amounts to the same thing) switchable between framebuffer and X. Run the app, and if the DISPLAY is local, skip X, otherwise be an X client. ...or something like that, but now I'm just rambling.

    --Chouser
    "To stay young requires unceasing cultivation of the ability to unlearn old falsehoods." -LL

    Re:Told you so... (Score:2)
    by jetson123 (br_9801 at hotmail dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:33PM EST (#177)
    (User Info)
    Qt and GTK can potentially "skip" X and present abstract graphics interface because they have restricted applications domains: they are GUI toolkits for Motif and Windows-like applications. arranged and communicate.

    If you wanted to use a toolkit like Qt or GTK to replace X11 as a general purpose window system, you'd have to add a lot more functionality. And, in the end, you'd still end up with something that can't do as much.

    Embedded versions of those toolkits are very useful. However, they are no replacement for a system like X11.

    BeIA still way ahead technologically (Score:1)
    by browser_war_pow on Tuesday March 21, @05:03PM EST (#92)
    (User Info) http://digitalheresy.tripod.com
    Linux might as well give up in the embedded market because BeIA is much farther ahead technologically. Linux should stay in the server/workstation market where it belongs. BTW BeOS now runs on crusoe so it is only a matter of time before BeIA internet appliances start appearing in big numbers
    Welcome to the 21st century: megacorporations crush personal liberty and individual rights and the government calls it "capitalism"
    Re:BeIA still way ahead technologically (Score:1, Interesting)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @05:27PM EST (#104)
    Linux might as well give up in the embedded market

    But Linux is an OS, not a company... how can it give it up? Seriously, though, BeOS is much more advanced & better designed in a number of areas... A program/game can write directly to the graphic buffer (full screen or in a window), a window's contents can change while the window is being moved, resized, etc. I don't want to say "innovation" (MS has given it a bad name, and it isn't an innovation), but someday people will recognize that it's a better solution

    BTW BeOS now runs on crusoe

    BeOS has run on crusoe since day 1 (of the announcement :-)

    Re:BeIA still way ahead technologically (Score:1)
    by GeZ117 on Wednesday March 22, @06:16AM EST (#240)
    (User Info)
    BeOS is better designed because J-L Gassť wasn't trying to have a system compatible with what was already existing. BeOS is not a VT100-compatible Linux with a silly keyboard handling (fucking numlock and fucking delete). Nor is it a DOS-compatible Windows. BeOS is a wholly new OS, designed for new appliances without bothering with carbon-dated technojunks. This is its strength (for the technical part) and its weakness (for the number of applications). I hope to see one day a GPL-or-whatever version of BeOS.
    What is the licensing? (Score:1)
    by scott__ (scott@surrealistic.org) on Tuesday March 21, @05:08PM EST (#96)
    (User Info) http://www.surrealistic.org
    Did Qt ever amend their differences with the Free Software movement? I've never really gotten a clear answer on this issue.
    -Scott__ scott@surrealistic.org
    Re:What is the licensing? (Score:2)
    by Foogle (foogle@adelphia.net) on Tuesday March 21, @07:34PM EST (#151)
    (User Info) http://snowball.in/~hell
    Yes, the license for QT version 2.0 is fully "Open Source" compliant. Of course people still complain because it's not GPL'ed, but that's life.

    -----------

    "You can't shake the Devil's hand and say you're only kidding."
    - They Might Be Giants

    Re:What is the licensing? (Score:1)
    by Thrakkerzog on Tuesday March 21, @09:58PM EST (#212)
    (User Info) http://tick.dhs.org
    That's the license for FreeQt version 2.0.

    They don't mention the license of Qt/Embedded.


    -- Thrakkerzog
    Monkey Cloning at Bucknell!
    Re:What is the licensing? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @07:57PM EST (#155)
    Richard Stallman has declared the QPL to be Free Software (What I don't understand though, is why anyone needed his imprimatur to begin with). But he did issue a poison pill by declaring that GPL applications must have special permissions before they can link to a QPL library. Too many people have taken this as the gnuspel truth without realizing that the GPL already allows this.
    You can't link *someone else's* GPLed app to QT (Score:1)
    by divec on Tuesday March 21, @09:38PM EST (#207)
    (User Info) http://3334130452/
    he did issue a poison pill by declaring that GPL applications must have special permissions before they can link to a GPL library.

    He's not alone; the Debian project, with some legal advice, agreed. See their statement about the issue. Section 2 of the GPL and section 3 of the QPL are mutually exclusive.


    If you link *your own* GPLed app to QT, that's perfectly legal. If you give others permission, then they can do it too.


    [Sig obliterated ;-) ]
    hey, hey! X is not dead yet! (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @05:12PM EST (#97)
    Ok, I agree that X sucks in stand-alone desktops. But I'm not going to give up the ability to execute programs remotely anytime soon!
    I like the idea of being able to choose between the X and the framebuffer version of a program when I want to, or even to have a same binary being able to execute on both as much as the next guy. But I think that this distributed execution we've always taken for granted is a very good thing.

    Even the windows world is trying to implement this kind of thing, btw.
    Paradigm fork(1) (Score:1)
    by DrSkwid (drskwid@yahoo-co-uk) on Tuesday March 21, @05:41PM EST (#112)
    (User Info) http://www.hardlight.couk.com
    Just when you upgrade to the long awaited version 4.0 than it's time to delete it and re-write all the apps again for a different one.

    Anyone written a Farenhieght to Celcius converter for it yet?
    .oO0Oo.
    Politics is life. Vote with your self.
    Re:Paradigm fork(1) (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:59PM EST (#213)
    You mean fork(2), since fork() is a system call.
    Qt/fb via DGA if local, else Qt/X (Score:2, Informative)
    by SpinyNorman (spiny_norman@mad.scientist.com) on Tuesday March 21, @05:55PM EST (#116)
    (User Info)
    XFree already provides DGA to remove the X protocol and network overhead for local apps, so why not combine this with Qt/fb for a seamless "do the right thing" Qt-based desktop...

    A Qt/KDE based app. can determine if it's X display is local or not, and act accordingly: If the display is remote (i.e. over the network), then the normal Qt/X is used, but if the display is local, then the new "embedded" Qt/fb is used "on top of X" via DGA to provide a seamless display.

    What would really make this solution would be if XFree accelerated drivers could be used by Qt for direct screen access rather than using the framebuffer which has very limited 2D acceleration only.

    QT vs GTK (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @09:11AM EST (#247)
    QT or GTK?
    QT ... doesnt seem to be going anywhere, except in the new KDE version seemlessly.

    GTK.. gnome is moving up and so is GTK i love gtk, and it seems to be always ranking the theme sites as well.
    No X, No way !!! (Score:2, Insightful)
    by 51M02 on Tuesday March 21, @06:06PM EST (#118)
    (User Info)
    No X this mean:
    • They must convert KDE (that require X) or create a new desktop (one more :-).
    • No GTK applications will work with it (Unless support developped by the GTK project group, which is unlikely)
    • No X application support (Netscape Communicator ...) until a port is done.
    This is a M$-like method to create standard: pressing the developers to adopt Qt as the standard application model capable to be used in all environnement (X and non-X) inside Linux.

    And if Gnome release such environnement it will only create more fragmentation. I don't really like this idea.
    - Open Source would not be as popular if Window$ was GPLed.

    Re:No X, No way !!! (Score:0)
    by PHroD (zephcATearthlinkDOTnet) on Tuesday March 21, @06:27PM EST (#130)
    (User Info) http://hotsos.8m.com
    hullew? is this thing on?

    the point of this is for EMBEDDED systems, not for desktop systems. Qt apps will all ready work, as they should be 100% source compatible (as if there was such a thing :P) and KDE could be ported quite quickly to it, but again its NOT a desktop system, its meant for like ATM machines and stuff like that... you can still run your gtk C apps all you want on your desktop system...besides, its not like Linux FORCES you to upgrade :) you can do it if you WANT to

    "There is no spoon"-Neo, The Matrix
    "SPOOOOOOOOON!"-The Tick, The Tick
    "Redeyes! Didn't expect to see you so...SPOON!"-Blue Raja, Mystery Men
    KDE is not Qt (Score:2)
    by JamesKPolk (multivac @ fcmail.com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:06PM EST (#162)
    (User Info)
    Qt is just a application development toolkit, with a healthy dose of GUI.

    KDE uses Qt, but Qt is not a desktop environment. It is just a library.

    KDE will continue to use Qt/X11, as it always has.
    Re:KDE is not Qt (Score:1)
    by 51M02 on Tuesday March 21, @08:26PM EST (#172)
    (User Info)
    This article is about Trolltech creating a new environment (not been X) that will be able to use Qt applications. Correct me if I am wrong but KDE is not only developed using Qt, KDE need some X functions. Without X most part of KDE has to be rewritten.
    - Open Source would not be as popular if Window$ was GPLed.
    Re:KDE is not Qt (Score:1)
    by warmi on Wednesday March 22, @01:38AM EST (#226)
    (User Info)
    Mostly WM code, since this requires X specific code, everything else should port very easily.

    Re:KDE is not Qt (Score:1)
    by GeZ117 on Wednesday March 22, @06:54AM EST (#242)
    (User Info)
    No more, as for KDE2 there is a OLE-like protocol (DCOP) which require X for ICE. Without X, no DCOP, so KOffice, for example, won't work. Except if Qt/embed include a remplacement for ICE (I doubt).
    Re:KDE is not Qt (Score:1)
    by JamesKPolk (multivac @ fcmail.com) on Wednesday March 22, @09:45AM EST (#249)
    (User Info)
    My point is, KDE is not a Troll Tech project, and Qt/Embedded is not a sign that the Troll developers are megalomaniacs.
    But is it free software? (Score:2)
    by raph (raph+slash@acm.org) on Tuesday March 21, @06:08PM EST (#120)
    (User Info) http://www.levien.com/
    The press release doesn't mention licenses at all. The only reasonable thing to conclude is that it probably won't be free software.

    I believe it is now time for a fully free (GPL, perhaps) windowing system that fixes the major problems with X. Such a beast would:


    • Be based on a sophisticated imaging model with transparency and antialiasing
    • Have fonts that didn't suck
    • Be simple and small
    • Have hooks for adding hardware acceleration
    • Work with the realtime capabilities in the OS


    A lot of the infrastructure that we need already exists. Libart provides the imaging model. FreeType can take care of the fonts. I've seen some early results from FreeType 2, and I have reason to believe it will be juicy. We can certainly make use of all the wisdom learned from mature systems such as X, as well as newer systems such as Berlin and Microwindows.

    This idea, I think, is gathering momentum. If you're interested in contributing to the project, let me know and I can hook you up with some of the other people who are working in a similar direction.
    New graphics systems (Score:1)
    by Wesley Felter (wesf@cs.utexas.edu) on Tuesday March 21, @09:24PM EST (#200)
    (User Info) http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/wesf/
    I've been thinking about this, too. It seems like there are two ways to go:

    Smart: Put as much of the logic and work as possible in the server. NeWS was an example of this; Berlin is possibly an extreme example.

    Stupid: Put as little in the server as possible (events, region management) and let all the apps draw directly to the framebuffer. Y seemed to be taking this approach, and I hear MacOS X is also.

    (Note that I don't mean "stupid" in a bad way. The Internet is a really stupid network, and that's why it's the best one around.)

    Which way should we go?
    Re:But is it free software? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @07:05PM EST (#146)
    No. linux is a very fast pseudo-microkernel ( linux has (un)loadable modules, but no inter-module memory protection means that it is technically still a monolithic kernel)

    Linux has both hard- (rtlinux) and soft- (mess with your scheduler - how do you think sound playback on linux avoids jitters) realtime.
    And just as a point of fact.. (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @07:28PM EST (#149)
    .. the next version of GTK (1.4) won't be tied to X in the slightest.
    I think its on the right track (Score:1)
    by neoptik (thomDONTSPAMME@speakDONTSPAMMEeasy.org) on Tuesday March 21, @07:33PM EST (#150)
    (User Info)
    Not being a professional, but a young amature, take my comments with a grain of salt. But...This does seem like a logical step for Linux/OS Unix on the desktop.

    Considering that in the upcomming years we probably WON'T see broadband internet connections capable of handling a decent speed X session, this may have some value. Because thin clients don't have as many resources as workstations, desktop machines, or even the standard X terminal, this may provide a new solution.

    Also we have to realize that one of the things that keeps Windows popular on the desktop is that it is in one way or another easy to develop for. I know I am going to get hit by lots of experienced programmers telling me that I am wrong and that the Win32 API's suck and all that, but with VB and the whole MS Dev studio together, its pretty simple creating apps.

    One aspect of Windows development that I see could be easier than standard Linux/OS Unix development is the UI output. If programmers can save resources by not having to utilize network protocols then maybe the apps that they develop could be either more stable or more feature filled.

    All of us complain about having too little memory, or bandwith, or processor speed. If there was one less process going on in our standard desktop apps then maybe we may find other features to use those resources with, or even, *gasp*, just have apps that run more stably and consume less resources?

    Any thoughts?
    I dont have a .sig just yet.

    troll tech/qt is kind of a ripoff. (Score:2, Interesting)
    by small_dick (small_dick@threeinches.FAKE_ADDRESS.org) on Tuesday March 21, @08:20PM EST (#167)
    (User Info)
    'spose you write closed source...for whatever reason.

    TrollTech: A set of libraries; $1550 per developer.

    Microsoft: Visual C++ Pro AND W2K. About $500 per developer, for both.

    My sources: The trolltech webpage and pricewatch.com

    I think the price for Qt is ridiculous. Borland sold their stuff to anyone, for $49.99, at a time when the cheapest alternatives were over a thousand. Phillipe Kahn is still a very rich man. The way they (Troll and KDE) keep yapping about the "QPL" is sickening. The Qt libs do not even have a value of a Borland product, let alone MSHAFT.

    Really, I know a lot of people don't like to hear it, but far too many Linux OS and add-on companies are guaging their price structures off of Microsoft, Borland and Apple.

    Here's some news for you: your product only runs on a few percent of the world's machines, if that. Stop staring at your P&L and get the products out for low cost so developers can use them.

    You are killing Linux, which wouldn't exist without people like RMS and Linus, who were selfless and knew they would have to give for a long time before the rewards came back.

    Wake up, Trolls.
    Well said. Qt a ripoff. (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:29PM EST (#204)
    ... but hey the KDE developpers can keep on developping GPL'ed software based on Qt - just as long as they only use the X11 version. Troll can include some of the GPL apps along with their 2000$ development license for windows and "embedded" markets. Troll can say: "thanks for the sample code open source programmers. Now suck it up and give us 2 grand for the commercial Windows version."
    Hey it's cheaper than NeXT Developer! (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:38PM EST (#208)
    Everyone might have loved NeXT but uhh it didn't exactly take the world by storm ...

    A case of a technically excellent UI and OO design made by a small company (NeXT and OpenStep were good enough that a fleet of engineers weren't needed). But htey were small and needed money and charged WAY too much ...

    Troll seems small and cash hungry too.

    Message to Troll: cut the price by 90% and go for an IPO. In case you don't know an IPO is where people invest in your company and you use the money to sell develop and market your products.
    I don't really like the look of this (Score:3, Insightful)
    by spitzak (spitzak at d two dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @08:23PM EST (#171)
    (User Info) http://www.cinenet.net/users/spitzak
    We need to replace X. Anybody who thinks otherwise is totally ignorant of how bad it is.

    But I don't want to see a "toolkit" interface as the low-level API. This will completely freeze all gui devlopment. It will also make Linux much harder to "hacker" program and will make it less fun. If I am forced to use Qt, I might as well use MFC and Direct X.

    What we need is a true replacement for X that keeps the (few) good ideas of X:

    A networked, buffered protocol. Despite claims above, this is more efficient than a call-based API. There has to be context switches, unless we want to allow the programs to write and peek at each other's windows and to be able to clobber the video registers. The way to keep the context switches down is to buffer requests. Nice simple buffering at a low level, and we get an efficient interface, and we get networked transparency for "free" (rather than having to add it on, as MicroSoft is feverishly trying to do right now...)

    The server does not have to do any "GUI" things. X design is 20 years old, yet it is obvious that it can draw all the GUI components ever invented (like we can copy Windoze quite exactly, and that was not a design criteria when X was made). I do not want a server that has any concept of a "menu" or "button". That is bloat. Put it in the user-level library (much like Qt and GTK are now). I really really fear Qt becoming the standard interface, even MicroSoft was smart enough to not cram MFC down everybody.

    The server does need advanced graphics capabilities. Here the opposite is obvious: X obviously cannot duplicate new ideas. We have seen antialiasing for years now and X cannot do it. 3D requires a whole new interface (OpenGL) that does not interact well with the rest (it does not use X gc's or colors, for instance). And way too many programs "work" by creating a local image buffer, doing all the work there (thus losing all hardware acceleration), and drawing the image.

    I envision a server much like X, but with graphics capabilities like a combination of PostScript and OpenGL (plus antialiased everything, like Flash, and 4-channel images, and transparent paint, and UTF-8 text).

    It seperates programs into arbitrary-shaped "windows" (perhaps with transparency) and does not allow one program to draw in another's "window" or intercept events to another's "window". But except for that it is "GUI stupid". It must deliver raw events to the clients and make absolutely no assumptions about anything, for instance a "window" does not mean it has a border.

    Re:I don't really like the look of this (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @08:47PM EST (#183)

    The answer to your question is: DisplayPostscript.

    NeXTStep used/uses this and it's quite amazing. It runs over a network, deals with the color issues that are problematic under X, alpha color channels (transparency), and NeXT addressed 3D and high-performance access.

    And while people complained about the performance of DisplayPostscript, it seemed that my color NeXTStation (a 30MHz 68040) had about he same feel as my dual 200MHz PPro running WinNT 4.0(SP6). I'm sure DPS would cruise on this hardware.

    Whatever performance advantages there are to a direct access model, something else in NT completely offsets it.

    Craig

    Re: DPS (Score:1)
    by spitzak (spitzak at d two dot com) on Tuesday March 21, @09:26PM EST (#201)
    (User Info) http://www.cinenet.net/users/spitzak
    Direct PostScript as implemented on the NeXT is an excellent example of what is needed. (Do not confuse this with X DPS, which is more like an extension and does not solve anything, on the Next everything, including window creation, was in the postscript stream).

    Main changes I would make to the NeWS:

    1. Add 3d (openGL) and antialiasing

    2. Do alpha correctly by making alpha part of the current color, rather than having the "compositing modes".

    3. Get rid of "layer numbers" in the server. This was the only bit of GUI in the server, and there was absolutely no reason for it, as the toolkit could emulate it easily.

    Document and support the postscript interface, rather than trying to force everybody to use NeXTStep (ie same complaint I have about Qt or MFC being the interface).

    A perhaps better example is NeWS. In this the windowing was much better integrated into the PostScript. They did depend too much on executing the GUI on the server, though, but otherwise was a much cleaner design.

    In both cases lots of operations were noticably faster than X, despite the "overhead" of the buffering and the PostScript interpreter. And NeWS allowed me to rotate and scale an application and it still worked! Nobody is even trying that now...

    Doesn't *ANYONE* know about Berlin? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:31PM EST (#206)
    It uses GGI OpenGL TrueType and Unicode and it isn't X. Gentlemen, port your toolkits ....
    Re:Doesn't *ANYONE* know about Berlin? (Score:1)
    by jonabbey (jonabbey@burrow.org) on Tuesday March 21, @11:10PM EST (#220)
    (User Info) http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2
    Berlin Home Page

    Ganymede, a GPL'ed metadirectory for UNIX http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2
    Qt licensing issue. (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:10PM EST (#193)
    I like Linux. I like GNU. GNU is best. Linux is cool
    X and Qt-in-a-framebuffer aren't exclusive ... (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @09:23PM EST (#198)
    Run your KDE/Qt in a framebuffer desktop if you want and uhmm ... run an X server in the framebuffer to display X apps (AFAIK there already are several of these - plus GGI Xggi yada yada yada).

    Surely KDE based on Qt-in-a-framebuffer would accept XDND standard drag and drops etc. etc. blah blah.

    What's the big deal? Or has Troll said the Qt-in-a-framebuffer GUI toolkit won't be "free"?

    If they have well then surprise surprise and add to that about 10,000 "I told you so's"

    ...
    X isn't as big as you think... (Score:2, Informative)
    by jg on Tuesday March 21, @10:01PM EST (#214)
    (User Info) http://www.w3.org/People/Gettys/

    A few factoids to add to the discussion.

    The size of the X server on Itsy is under 700K, courtesy of Keith Packard's new frame buffer code; contrast this with your current X server weighing in at 2 megabytes. This is due to the changes in machine speeds over the last decade. (Note that Keith did the previous frame buffer code: but on 10 mip machines, you had to do things differently to drive a frame buffer flat out).

    DDX's are beginning to cut over to this code, so expect your X servers to get smaller over the next year or two.

    Keith is also working on an anti-aliased text and graphics with alpha blending extension: come hear his paper this summer at Usenix.

    Oh, and someone said X is 20 years old: incorrect, the first thing called X was created less than 16 years ago, and X11's design is about 12 years old.

    Of course, jg was one of the primary authors of X (Score:1)
    by jonabbey (jonabbey@burrow.org) on Tuesday March 21, @10:40PM EST (#217)
    (User Info) http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2

    Jim Gettys is a name that should be familiar to all old-time X developers, as his name is on a whole lot of the code from way back when

    Anyone with some free moderation points might want to bump up his post.


    Ganymede, a GPL'ed metadirectory for UNIX http://www.arlut.utexas.edu/gash2
    Re:X isn't as big as you think... (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @10:22AM EST (#253)
    I agree on this point - I used to run X on a 4Meg Atari Falcon,
    and from memory the actually base system wasn't huge at all
    - it couldn't be, otherwise it wouldn't have worked on a 16Mhz
    68030 with only 4Meg of RAM and no VM at all.

    An X server isn't huge in itself - but the API is probably overkill
    for a single user system.

    One day I'll port my old GEM clone XaAES to the linux framebuffer,
    just to show how far things haven't moved in the last few years
    with respect to bang-for-buck in the user interface stakes...
    I hope someone ports Mozilla to this (Score:2)
    by Jack William Bell (jackb@sff.net) on Tuesday March 21, @10:50PM EST (#219)
    (User Info) http://www.sff.net/people/jackb/home.htp

    Or to some other frame-buffer based GUI. I want to use Mozilla/XUL/XPCom as the basis for a whole set of applications. And it would help if I could use it embedded.

    Jack


    Now we dare the great Promethean sin/And bring fire back to heaven on our rockets -- Robert Anton Wilson, from the poem 'Free At Last'
    GTK/Gnome sans X (Score:3, Informative)
    by anonymous cowpie on Tuesday March 21, @11:33PM EST (#223)
    (User Info)
    In a similar vein, the YAX (YAX Ain't X) project aims eventually to build a windowing system on top of svgalib/GGI/fbcon/Mesa/whatever that will support Gnome and GTK apps. There hasn't been a lot of traffic on the list, but the code is progressing, albeit somewhat slowly.
    Just interesting... (Score:1)
    by ceeam on Wednesday March 22, @01:08AM EST (#225)
    (User Info)
    Why X is nicked X11?
    Was there X2, X3 etc.?
    Re:Just interesting... (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @09:53AM EST (#250)
    Yes.
    Currently X is version 11, release 6.4.
    That's why you hear X11R6 (well, apparently you don't.. :)
    How is this a bad thing? (Score:1, Flamebait)
    by Graymalkin on Wednesday March 22, @02:41AM EST (#227)
    (User Info) http://xydyx.com
    So many people on here are bitching about Qt. Qt (I find personally) is much better than GTK. I this this move by Trolltech is a very good idea. Removing Qt's dependancy on X would make it MUCH easier to port. It would be nice to be able to port *nix apps directly to other OSes GUI and all. I would also think it would be a boon to people wanting to put together embedded systems running Linux but don't have the cash to build their own GUI engine along with a graphics library. I don't like X anyways, why the heck does my display need to be networked? I don't ever use a remote client because my connection isn't nearly fast enough.
    Don't knock my smock or I'll clean your clock!
    Re:How is this a bad thing? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 22, @07:38AM EST (#244)
    Really, do you have any idea what you're talking about?
    Finaly (Score:2, Interesting)
    by rullskidor on Wednesday March 22, @07:34AM EST (#243)
    (User Info)
    For the first time Im relly happy about QT, I still doesn't like it and will never ever in hell use it but it will hopfully inspire GTK hackers to imitate ;). Linux doesn't need one way to do it but more ways, long live QT,GTK, Berlin, X,Dinx,Framebuffers and GGI !
    Re:Hmm... no TROLLS _yet_? (Score:0, Informative)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:18PM EST (#13)
    Speaking of Trolls, CmdrTaco is still an idiot
    Re:Hmm... no TROLLS _yet_? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:47PM EST (#45)
    moderate this up
    Re:Hmm... no TROLLS _yet_? (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @06:19PM EST (#124)
    heh. true, true.
    Re:so (Score:1, Flamebait)
    by Graymalkin on Tuesday March 21, @03:27PM EST (#21)
    (User Info) http://xydyx.com
    Another acronym you should ponder is URI, U R an Idiot.
    Don't knock my smock or I'll clean your clock!
    Re:so (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @03:34PM EST (#30)
    Do you live under a rock?
    Re:you think you're cool (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @04:27PM EST (#70)
    http://www.time.com/time/everyone/magazine/sidebar_dj.html
    Re:so (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, @08:26PM EST (#173)
    yeah, good one mate.
    Goals... Plans... they're fantasies, they're part of a dream world... -- Wally Shawn
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