Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Ubuntu 10.10 Multitouch Support Demo

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the isn't-that-pretty dept.

GUI 104

Timothy found a news report and a little video demonstrating the multi-touch capabilities of Ubuntu. It's attached below if you're curious what the new Unity Netbook UI is looking like these days.

cancel ×

104 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

cfulton (543949) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933706)

Slash dot told me so just three stories ago.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1, Flamebait)

blai (1380673) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933752)

Jesus also died for three stories and rose again. What's your point?

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

mrsteveman1 (1010381) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933950)

Linus will rise again?

I knew he was a god, no mortal could call the OpenBSD guys "Masturbating monkeys" and live to tell about it.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934788)

Slashdot != Bible.

Slashdot actually tells SOME stories that are true.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0, Offtopic)

PRMan (959735) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935212)

Whereas in the Bible they are ALL true.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33935640)

Whoever told you that was lying.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33939012)

Whoever told you that was lying.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33935510)

Funny how funny posts are taken seriously

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33933844)

Didn't you see him pick up the computer in the video? No desktop needed. This is about post-desktop computing.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933898)

Tablet != desktop, even if it's lying on your desk top :)

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

grub (11606) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933954)


I can feel the tremors of fear emanating from Cupertino...

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934160)

They are too dissociated from reality to understand 'fear'.

And, I think Android would be 10x more likely to make them afraid than Ubuntu.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934490)

Don't worry; Apple will just pull out their patents and find someone to sue. Hell, there is probably an app for that...

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

Crudely_Indecent (739699) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934804)

While that's true for OSX and the iPad, it isn't true for Linux.

In Linux, the difference between a desktop and a tablet is an interface layer, in this case adding multitouch capabilities. The applications and kernel are the same.

My daughters run Kubuntu Netbook Remix. When I forgot my power supply at work, I borrowed one of their systems, installed Eclipse and got to work. The difference between NBR and regular Ubuntu is......configuration, nothing more.

Hardware differences aside (Core2 vs dual-Atom / 4GB vs 1GB / 320GB vs 1TB) There is nothing fundamentally different between my daughters laptops and mine. If I can run it, they can run it (slower).

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33935914)

Linux

Come on. You mean some variation of GNU/Linux.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#33936788)

I know all that, the fact remains it isn't in desktop form factor.. it was a joke anyway. If Linux is dead on the desktop it's only because the desktop is dying.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

ChunderDownunder (709234) | more than 3 years ago | (#33939330)

initiatives such as this and nokia's efforts with Qt for meego/symbian allow for iPad form factors in a 'desktop' OS.
I see a trickle down effect where instead of rewriting an application for an embedded toolkit, applications can be re-skinned for small devices and touch input. Same gtk+/Qt toolkit, different l&f.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (5, Insightful)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933982)

Portables != Desktop. The article you're referring to also makes a point of pointing out how *well* Linux is doing on portables. This device is more closely related to an iPad than a desktop. That said I have several questions the video doesn't answer. Does this device have a physical keyboard or a virtual one. If it's got a physical KB then they did a fantastic job of hiding the thing while it wasn't being used. If it's got a virtual keyboard I'd really like to see it up as part of the video. Just to get an idea for how much screen real estate it uses and such.

I've been considering an iPad. Honestly this looks nicer (at any rate more open, which is more important to me on a tablet than a phone), but I'd want to see a lot more than a couple muti-touch gestures to be sold. He really only demonstrates two gestures, mostly he spends the whole video using a single finger to simulate a left-click on static objects. Hardly revolutionary. Can it do pinch zoom? Two finger scrolling or one finger? Will two fingers simulate a right-click? (It's a mostly desktop OS, so unlike in iOS right clicking is probably pretty useful). I'm sure I could find out the answers, but if you're going to make a promo video for "multi-touch" show me some "multi-touching".

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (3, Interesting)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934554)

Can it do pinch zoom? Two finger scrolling or one finger? Will two fingers simulate a right-click? (It's a mostly desktop OS, so unlike in iOS right clicking is probably pretty useful). I'm sure I could find out the answers, but if you're going to make a promo video for "multi-touch" show me some "multi-touching".

From the article:

One of the coolest things though is one that will be experienced by the fewest people at this point – touch. Unity is fully touch-enabled – those big icons are screaming out to have a digit poked at them. But as ever, the boys in the lab, or in this case Duncan McGregor‘s multi-touch team have gone a step further and created a multi-touch ‘gesture’ library. This allows finger combinations to do groovy things like expand and reduce windows, pull up multiple windows in one workspace, and call up the ‘dash’ automatically. These are in 10.10. In 11.04 we will see a lot more.

So I'd say, no, it doesn't have more than just what they demonstrated

At least not yet. But you'll probably have a lot of them delivered by, interestingly enough, Natty Narwhal (which is odd because Narwhals don't look like they'd be too interested in multitouch).

Given that I'm sure the multitouch library will expand even more significantly for 11.10, I'd like to make a suggestion for the name: Omnipotent Octopus.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (2, Funny)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934724)

Oh, hey, look... An article. I just sort of watched the embedded video and assumed that was the whole thing. That answers more of my questions, and also tells me that this isn't quite what I was looking for. What I really want is an iPad style device with a full OS on it. I want the full OS to have UI optimized for the small screen real estate (which it looks like this Ubuntu WM is). This is definitely getting there, but I want a different form factor and a much larger gesture library. Maybe in a year or so then...

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

skine (1524819) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934584)

Just look at the device. It's a laptop with a swivel screen, so of course it has a physical keyboard.

That said, it would be nice to see how it would implement a software keyboard for when you don't want the hassle of turning the device back into a laptop.

Ubuntu is

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935528)

I hope they get something better than dash.

Or more familiar anyway (though I've tried dash a few times and thwomp it speedwise with my phone in portrait mode)

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

Crudely_Indecent (739699) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934862)

show me some "multi-touching"

I saw it....several times.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33935026)

ir's one of those dell laptops with a touch screen that swivels around and closes with the LCD facing out.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (1)

loftyhauser (1149267) | more than 3 years ago | (#33936500)

It's a Dell Latitude XT2 [dell.com] convertible tablet PC -- with a physical keyboard.

Re:But Linux on the desktop is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33939406)

Looks like a desktop operating system to me. Am I the only one who doesn't want a multi-touch interface with mouse cursors?

Dead ? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33933718)

wasn't dead a while ago ?

Didn't Ubuntu Hear? (0, Redundant)

linuxrunner (225041) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933766)

Re:Didn't Ubuntu Hear? (2, Funny)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934570)

No, you're just not touching it the right way.

Re:Didn't Ubuntu Hear? (1)

damien_kane (519267) | more than 3 years ago | (#33936218)

The difference is that you only poked it with one stick
You have to poke it with two sticks (or more) to wake it up.

IF YOU'RE CURIOUS??!!#% (0, Flamebait)

MichaelKristopeit 14 (1916016) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933794)

cmdrtaco doesn't even assume everyone installs the most popular linux distros anymore.

slashdot = stagnated.

YOU ARE NOTHING! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934042)

MichealKristopeit, a.k.a. SAMEFAG, posts mind-numbingly retarded comments using 10 or more UIDs.

Mod down on sight, thank you.

Re:YOU ARE NOTHING! (-1, Troll)

MichaelKristopeit 14 (1916016) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934082)

why do you cower? what are you afraid of? nothing to say for yourself?

you're completely pathetic.

Best looking dead OS I've seen (5, Funny)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933808)

For a dead operating system there are some exciting advancements coming out.

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934074)

I tried 10.10 on my TC1100 and it ran like crap, granted it was only a Pentium M @ 1.1Ghz and 2GB of ram but Windows 7 runs flawlessly on it. On 10.10 my tablet became increasingly hot, hotter than i've ever seen it get, also the on screen keyboard is a joke, for example you can't access it when the computer needs elevation a rights and is asking for a password. Ubuntu needs a lot of work if it's going to be touch/tablet friendly.

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (2, Interesting)

CnlPepper (140772) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934448)

How about bitching about it once they have it finished?

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (1)

ciderbrew (1860166) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934614)

That's a bit harsh. I mean when will windows be finished!?!

Ba-dum chi.

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (2, Informative)

Elbowgeek (633324) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935222)

As soon as Lotus won't run ;-)

(Yes it's still out there, marketed under the Smartsuite label from IBM)

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (1)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934990)

Last week called. They want 10/10/10 (official launch date of Ubuntu 10.10) back. :)

Seriously, if 10.10 isn't "finished" (which, after testing it, I'd argue you have a decent point) then why did they release it last week? When will it be "finished", because I don't see a date for that on Ubuntu's web site.

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (1)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941406)

10.10 is finished. From what I understand this is the first ubuntu release to take multi-touch seriously, so this would be their "beta" for multi-touch. I would expect multi-touch to be much MUCH better in the 11.04 version after they have had a chance to get usefull feedback from people trying out the multi-touch stuff.

Remember the cloud stuff from 10.04? It worked but wasn't fully finished. By the time 10.10 came out, cloud computing is working nearly flawlessly in 10.10 (they even have a live demo to try out).

Canonical typically releases a mostly-finished implementation of the "next big thing" then polishes it up the for the next release in 6 months after people have tested it out.

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33939896)

The TC1100? I've dealt with tablets at my university for years now (including about 30 TC1100's), and we switched all of our tablets (multiple, eg: heterogeneous, models) from dual-booting to only running Linux and our support costs went from mostly software issues to only hardware issues. I've personally been involved in getting Ubuntu to work on those tablets, as well as having a unified build to deploy with Clonezilla, and I can tell you that Ubuntu runs just as well as XP and better than Vista. Ubuntu has already been tablet friendly for awhile.

And if you want a good on-screen keyboard, simply install CellWriter. If you want to use CellWriter for the gksudo prompts, go to System - Assistive Technologies, and tick the checkbox for "Password dialogs as regular windows". You lose a little bit of security because now your passwords can theoretically be sniffed by a malicious X client, but you can fully use your tablet. You can also embed CellWriter, or any other on-screen keyboard into XScreensaver if you have your tablet lock itself after a period of non-use, and you can configure GDM to run CellWriter only in keyboard mode for logging in. About the only thing you can't do yet is use the side buttons on the tablet, but on that front, there are projects out there to handle screen rotation with and without hotkeys.

The only legitimate complaint you have is that Linux doesn't throttle the CPU correctly, and runs the CPU at full throttle. This is most likely an ACPI issue that the Linux kernel doesn't handle correctly in some models of laptops. Just for a bit of background on ACPI, Bill Gates was looking to make ACPI implementations Windows-only while he was still at Microsoft, and he seems to have done a good job at it (the bastard). Report your bug on Launchpad, make sure to comment that it can adversely affect the hardware, and update your kernel when they come out with a kernel update.

But, to claim that Ubuntu needs a lot of work before it is touch/tablet friendly is either flagrantly trolling, or an indication that you haven't done the slightest bit of research into the issues you brought up.

Huge Pickens is the new Roland Piquepaille? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934426)

Huge Pickens is the new Roland Piquepaille?

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33935172)

Nice troll. Ubuntu has been gaining ground on Windows consistently for years. And rightfully so, its essentially superior in every way except for gaming.

Re:Best looking dead OS I've seen (1)

sharkey (16670) | more than 3 years ago | (#33937180)

They ditched the Linux kernel for *BSD?

Patent Violations Galore (4, Funny)

aardwolf64 (160070) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933822)

I'm pretty sure that video broke 2-3 patents that were just granted to Apple. Apple should totally sue them and take 10% of their revenue from selling downloads of Ub... Nevermind.

Re:Patent Violations Galore (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934648)

Pretty much any computational device with a power on/off button violates one or the other patents from Apple. After all, everything that exists today in computer/phone technology is pretty much invented, patented, copyrighted or trademarked by Apple.

CAPITALISM FTW, BITCHES!!

Re:Patent Violations Galore (1)

the_hellspawn (908071) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934958)

Yeah, capitalism is f*cking the world...b*tch

Re:Patent Violations Galore (1)

Elbowgeek (633324) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935264)

Hey, I'm lovin' it - I just got a patent on the wheel. Anybody got the number for General Motors corporate office?

Re:Patent Violations Galore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33943712)

Hey, I'm lovin' it - I just got a patent on the wheel. Anybody got the number for General Motors corporate office?

Sorry, no. And by the way, some guy from McDonalds just called for you...

Nifty (2, Interesting)

Hatta (162192) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933828)

That's pretty good so far. Hopefully we can configure the icon bar on the left to hide by default the same way you can hide the task bar on any desktop. Speaking of the task bar, how is task switching accomplished on this thing? I may have missed it in the video. Is there a gesture that does the same thing as Alt-TAB?

My biggest concern, what happens when you want(yes, want) to use the terminal?

Re:Nifty (2, Informative)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933952)

That's pretty good so far. Hopefully we can configure the icon bar on the left to hide by default the same way you can hide the task bar on any desktop.

Probably. I use Docky set to autohide, it would work fine with a touchscreen.

Speaking of the task bar, how is task switching accomplished on this thing? I may have missed it in the video. Is there a gesture that does the same thing as Alt-TAB?

If you can do the expose style view with multitouch, I don't see why you couldn't set the alt-tab style switch in compiz to use the same gesture.

My biggest concern, what happens when you want(yes, want) to use the terminal?

Same as when you want to type anything else in? Use the onscreen keyboard, or connect up an external one..

Re:Nifty (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#33936864)

PS if you use a dock like Docky or AWM, you also can do task switching via that, because as well as being an application launcher, it loads in all your running apps into the dock. Same idea as the OSX dock and the Win7 task bar.

Re:Nifty (1)

Rabbidous (1844966) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935236)

Task switching in Unity is easy (and elegant). THere is a workspaces button on the "dock" that shows all of your windows/workspaces in an Expose type manner (Thank you OS X). You can drag programs between workspaces, as well as click on one to maximize. Also, if you have 3 windows open in firefox, for example, you can click on the firefox icon in the dock, and it will show all open firefox windows in miniature (also kind of expose like) and you can click on the one you want. I have some minor grudges with the file dialog, and a couple of instabilities, but overall, I think Unity will be a big improvement when all the wrinkles are worked out. (10.10 UNR on my HP netbook without fancy touch screen).

Re:Nifty (1)

eggz128 (447435) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935370)

I'm using Unity right now on my Samsung NC10. Not touch, but it's the same interface.

Hopefully we can configure the icon bar on the left to hide by default the same way you can hide the task bar on any desktop.

Right now you can't. It's a little annoying because it means I have to left-right scroll on some websites (1024x600 screen).

Speaking of the task bar, how is task switching accomplished on this thing?

Apps that are opened appear in the left hand dock (if they aren't there already because you've locked them as a launcher). If there are a lot of apps open some are "collapsed" at the base of the dock. You can scroll the dock up or down by click (touch) dragging up/down.

Open apps get a little triangle to the left of their icon in the dock. The foreground app gets a triangle on the right of it's icon. If you have more than one window of a particular app open, clicking it's icon gets you an exposé style animation that shows you all windows of that particular app. Using the workspace switcher icon in the dock shows you all workspaces and each app open on each workspace. The video seemed to show a way of viewing all the apps open on one workspace - I don't know how to do that - I just Alt-Tab to them.

My biggest concern, what happens when you want(yes, want) to use the terminal?

I added the terminal to the Unity dock launcher. I assume there's some sort of on screen keyboard available for touch devices.

Touchscreen keyboard? (4, Interesting)

spiffydudex (1458363) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933842)

One thing that wasn't mentioned in the article text or accompanying video that I am curious about, how does text input work? When a text bar or area is activated does it bring up a keyboard?

Re:Touchscreen keyboard? (3, Insightful)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934170)

That video had an awful lot of editing ... and some 'instant response' from the device ... almost like the commercials for iDevices & Droids on TV. It would have been nice to see a longer video with the actual response times for everything. I'm just sayin'

Re:Touchscreen keyboard? (2, Informative)

Again (1351325) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934324)

That video had an awful lot of editing ... and some 'instant response' from the device ... almost like the commercials for iDevices & Droids on TV. It would have been nice to see a longer video with the actual response times for everything. I'm just sayin'

Yeah, definitely a lot of editing. When I run the Unity interface on my lowly netbook, it is very sluggish. Click... wait... should I click again...? wait... yes... oops, it just popped up and went away quickly... click again... wait... I didn't use it for very long before going back to my regular interface. Of course, the device in the video may be a whole lot more powerful than my netbook but I thought that the Unity interface was "optimized" for the netbook.

But I want to say that the video looks very nice. The marketing teem did a very good job putting together a very nice, short video.

That's great but... (3, Insightful)

imgod2u (812837) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933852)

One of the important UI changes about a touch-only interface is that things such as managing the filesystem, arranging folders and icons, etc. are too cumbersome to do in the traditional navigator window type of interface.

iOS just gets rid of it altogether whereas Android limits you to handling files via applications. Unless they've managed to come up with a proper auto-categorization and file organizer -- such that I don't need to go through folders to get to a media file I want to play -- this will still be a cumbersome desktop OS with a touch UI "layer" on top.

Re:That's great but... (3, Funny)

yelvington (8169) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934108)

Just do like I do. All your files on your desktop. :-)

Re:That's great but... (1)

sockman (133264) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934300)

Finally, someone as smart as I am in file management!

Re:That's great but... (1)

ciderbrew (1860166) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934646)

I think Google bought BumpTop for that very reason.

Re:That's great but... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934390)

File managers work fine on the n900 (default or Filebox). Just limit the feature set of the file manager to avoid complicating the interface and you are good to go. Its no more difficult to tap your way down a folder system than it is clicking your way.

  For most user cases Tracker or the application will be good enough.

Re:That's great but... (3, Insightful)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934476)

A meta data tagging system combined with search should work wonders for organization, if only people would actually tag their files so they can find them later.

Auto categorization has sever limits, it can distinguish between file type, do keyword search on known text files and possibly use face recognition to distinguish between scenes and portraits or gps meta data to filter photos by location, but anything more than that is going to be impossible. It is impossible because it not only requires strong AI, but because it requires strong AI that knows how you would categorize things.

Re:That's great but... (1)

imgod2u (812837) | more than 3 years ago | (#33937976)

See that's the thing. People -- including myself -- don't *want* to manually tag stuff. It's the difference between a computer geek and a computer user. The user just wants everything done for him/her with the possibility of tweaking how the machine makes its decisions.

I wouldn't put it past Google to work on advanced file auto-classification algorithms that will one day make "oh I gotta put this in my music folder" obsolete.

Of course, then there's the "wait, don't name that 'porn' automatically!!" aspect....

Re:That's great but... (1)

E IS mC(Square) (721736) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934684)

>> iOS just gets rid of it altogether

Yep, and I think that's a problem, not a feature.

Re:That's great but... (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934766)

> One of the important UI changes about a touch-only interface is that things such as
> managing the filesystem, arranging folders and icons, etc. are too cumbersome to do
> in the traditional navigator window type of interface.

No not really. What's cumbersome is when certain operating systems try to do that. That's because they are trying to completely ignore the last 25 years of computing rather than trying to cherry pick good ideas that might be old but still serviceable.

File manglers are some of the most popular iApps.

Projecting things based on PhoneOS is like projecting things based on System 6 or the single button mouse.

We need everyone to stop being paralyzed in awe of the "new inevitable juggernaut" so we can progress from the 1984 version of Tablets we have now.

Re:That's great but... (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935094)

I'm more interested in transporting this off of a multitouch device and putting it on a desktop I've got at home. That may sound odd at first (who has a touch interface desktop besides restaraunts?) but it's actually a fun project that's turned into more of a project I've got going.

I saw Johnny Lee's Wii Hack back in 2008 and fell in love with the idea of having that wall projected screen with interaction from the couch using just a pen or something of that nature. As such I took my desktop, went out and bought a wii-mote, and set it up. Johnny has said that he doesn't have enough time to port it to Linux but he created a Sourceforge project for it. Not many people have been interested in it though, and I can see why: it's a very niche product idea as it is right now.

But, if Ubuntu has a new multi-touch interface, then there might be such a demand for this. If the interface is too cumbersome for mobile devices, perhaps it can be better used on more TV like devices.

Imagine this: You've got a big screen TV or wall projector. You've got an Ubuntu Box set up to handle your Internet TV or Incoming Cable/Satellite. You don't need anything on the remote control besides the power button, and once everything is on you can access your TV, Movies, music, photos, and surf the web on your TV set using nothing but an infrared pen to click around while on the couch. You've got a wireless keyboard should you need to type anything in, and a second light pen for some multi touch gestures should you want to do anything intense.

I've got most of this set up with a Windows Box right now (minus the Cable/InternetTV) - and I really enjoy it minus the whole Windows Experience. I get enough Windows at work and doing hobby programming - I really do like Ubuntu for surfing the web and for family slide show get togethers and that sort of thing. I would be interested if this OS made it onto a desktop and then the Wiimote Whiteboard hack was ported.

But I guess that's very niche market though.

Re:That's great but... (1)

ViViDboarder (1473973) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935152)

Yea, but you don't HAVE to manage your files all the time. Many applications just work out of your home folder or some nested folder in there and Open dialogs work fine. Other web apps work just fine as well.

The advantage here is that you have the OPTION to manipulate the files. Too cumbersome to do with touch? Sit down and do it with your KM since in the end at least it has a full featured OS.

Prefer to manage files myself, thanks (1)

mfearby (1653) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940920)

You'll never get people tagging all their files, and any system that tries to impose its own ideas on tagging or whatever is only ever going to raise eyebrows and frustrate people because they think/do know better.

I'd prefer to err on the side of upgrading the multi-touch capabilities of Nautilus and adding more icons to the toolbar (that'll take some convincing the Gnome-devs for sure!) to make multiple selections, copying, pasting, etc easier with the touch of a finger (or fingers).

If not, then the very least there needs to be a way to tone down any such "Ubuntu Netbook Remix knows best" setting for those that know better!

Tabs, not windows (2, Interesting)

Sonny Yatsen (603655) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933862)

I think it looks great, but I can't help but think that using application windows like on a regular desktop is maybe a step backwards for multitouch tablet devices. Sure, people are familiar with opening and maximizing or minimizing windows, but the buttons for such windows are small compared to the rest of the screen and hard to hit with clumsy fingers (especially mine). It's nice that the Unity desktop has the vertical launch bar on the left side - could this launch bar not be modified to function almost as a tab bar for open applications? That'd be much easier, I think, for touch and gesture based devices. Or, even better, use the Expose style overview mode to switch between windows (as shown in the video) rather than allowing the user to reshape and manipulate windows directly.

Re:Tabs, not windows (1)

just_another_sean (919159) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934094)

but the buttons for such windows are small compared to the rest of the screen and hard to hit with clumsy fingers (especially mine)

It looked like the user was using gestures for those things in the video, not the window control buttons. Swipe the window to the top for Maximize, move to the center for restore, etc...

Not positive about this as I have not used it but that's the way it appears in the video and IMHO mitigates the issues you mention.

What multi-touch? (5, Informative)

InsaneProcessor (869563) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933944)

I saw no real multi-touch features demonstrated in the video. He just moved the window around with more that one finger. I can do that on any touch screen.

Re:What multi-touch? (3, Informative)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934694)

There were several multi-touch gestures, but it would have been nice to have him move his hand a little more slowly and make it more obvious which finger(s) were on the screen at any time. For example, he appeared to call up the desktop split view by using two fingers, and tapping all five fingers of one hand on the screen seemed to call up a tasklist or somesuch.

As the article itself stated, the multi-touch gesture library is very limited at the moment in 10.10, but 11.04 should expand that library considerably.

Re:What multi-touch? (1)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934928)

The design team has lead the way, developing a “touch language” which goes beyond the work that we’ve seen elsewhere. Rather than single, magic gestures, we’re making it possible for basic gestures to be chained, or composed, into more sophisticated “sentences”. The basic gestures, or primitives, are like individual verbs, and stringing them together allows for richer interactions. It’s not quite the difference between banging rocks together and conducting a symphony orchestra, but it feels like a good step in the right direction

(http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/455)

Also https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Multitouch [ubuntu.com]

Unity & HTPC (1)

MonsterTrimble (1205334) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933948)

Maybe it's me, but I think Unity would rock hard as the front end for a Home Theatre PC.

Music, Video, Game System Emulators (NES FTW), Photo Sharing... Sounds about right.

Re:Unity & HTPC (1)

ViViDboarder (1473973) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935164)

I think that'd be pretty sweet. Also, when Google TV goes Open Source that'll be cool to see integrated by way of some app or something.

Rethink (1)

AndersBrownworth (448236) | more than 3 years ago | (#33933996)

Now if Ubuntu would just rethink the UI and make it essentially touch based rather than just hiding the mouse pointer...

Awesome (1, Troll)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934048)

though over the weekend I had to boot ubuntu on a samsung laptop to backup someones files before they formatted, and it couldn't find the network card (though windows 7 had no problem). So I am glad were focusing on the important stuff, like multitouch, that not many people have

Re:Awesome (1)

just_another_sean (919159) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934138)

... I had to boot ubuntu on a samsung laptop to backup someones files before they
formatted, and it couldn't find the network card (though windows 7 had no problem).

Maybe Samsung should do something about that...

Re:Awesome (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934190)

maybe

Re:Awesome (2, Insightful)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935380)

That happens, regardless of OS (except maybe Mac, but that's only because they strictly limit the hardware that OS-X runs on...). I've had the same problem with drivers that you described when installing Windows on various machines -- my wife's old XP desktop a few years ago, the Win2K3 server I built recently (and that required a freaking *FLOPPY DRIVE* to install 3rd party RAID drivers, sigh...). Sometimes Windows has the right driver built in, sometimes Linux does.

Re:Awesome (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941486)

Troll? Flamebate?

Bah, you know what? ubuntu has an entire list of stuff that people want fixed BEFORE this years gimmick, multitouch is only half finished amd left for dead

personally on my machines I have rolled back to 9, the 10x version are just constantly irritating to me and am currently looking at other distros

That's what IT said... (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934122)

"Unity is fully touch-enabled – those big icons are screaming out to have a digit poked at them."

I think most socially-awkward computer nerds are NOT happy with this condescending double-entendre!

maybe it should (1)

bugs2squash (1132591) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934200)

incorporate a multi-touch screen version of a chorded keyboard [wikipedia.org] for the command line.

Anyone else? (1)

Dyinobal (1427207) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934248)

Anyone else, hate touch screens? I can't bring myself to actually touch a screen smudges and smears finger prints and oils all drive me crazy on the screen. Give me a keyboard and mouse any day.

Re:Anyone else? (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934506)

I definately prefer they keyboard. I even use my keyboard 99% of the time on my Galaxy S smart phone. I basically only use the touch screen for keyboard incompatible features.

Re:Anyone else? (1)

nyctopterus (717502) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934606)

I thought that would be an issue before I got my iPod Touch, but it just isn't; the screen is bright enough to make the smudges nearly invisible, especially when you're looking at it straight-on (i.e. nearly all of the time).

This is a touchscreen OS not a netbook OS (1)

voss (52565) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934260)

Its all good if your netbook or tablet has a touchscreen, but I find it clunky compared to the 10.04
  netbook ubuntu for my regular netbooks.

How about more info for us drooling noobs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33934550)

Is 10.10 available? I use Ubuntu desktop LTS (10.04 I believe I'm on) and just download when something new is available.

What is the hardware platform this was being demo'd on? Obviously a Dell of some kind. Looked like a nice piece of hardware. Is it something already released or a prototype?

Re:How about more info for us drooling noobs (2, Insightful)

jc42 (318812) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934728)

Funny you should phrase it that way; my main thought while watching the video was "This is a true point-and-drool interface".

It wasn't until the very end that there was a brief glance at a screen that hinted at the existence of some sort of keyboard somewhere. But that didn't last long enough to scare the keyboard-averse, who are presumably the intended audience.

I also noticed a curious line around the edges that make it look like one of those screens that rotates and flips to hide a keyboard on the inside of the other half. Does this gadget have a physical keyboard hidden inside? Or, alternatively, does it open up to show a second keyboard on the other half?

Maybe I should just visit Dell and see if they have any actual info about it. But that might be too close to RTFA, so maybe I shouldn't admit here to every considering doing such a thing.

Re:How about more info for us drooling noobs (1)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935130)

Is 10.10 available?

Released on 10/10/10.

I use Ubuntu desktop LTS (10.04 I believe I'm on) and just download when something new is available

By default, LTS installations only update to newer LTS releases, which 10.10 isn't. You can change that in menu System > Administration > Software Sources, on the Updates tab. Read the release notes before upgrading, https://wiki.ubuntu.com/MaverickMeerkat/ReleaseNotes [ubuntu.com]

New ubuntu user here (5, Interesting)

iONiUM (530420) | more than 3 years ago | (#33934668)

I recently got an Asus EEE (1001px) netbook as a gift, and it came with Windows 7 starter. Now, I use windows 7 at home (ultimate) and I don't dislike it, but I was very unhappy with starter. You can't even change the background image, I mean, what the fuck.

Anyways, I used to use linux (I mean, like 10 years ago when I was in highschool I used to use debian and slackware), but haven't really since. I decided to try ubuntu so I did a USB installation and put 10.10 netbook edition. I have to say, it was just as easy (if not easier) than a win7 installation (which I have to do often), and is WAY better on a netbook.

I think people who say linux is popular on portables are exactly right. It's an awesome fit, and I love it.

Re:New ubuntu user here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33935286)

Funny you should mention this. I just tried 10.10 NBR and found it awful. The interface is slow, crashes all the time, the file managing is shit and getting to nautilus requires me to open a terminal and type in "nautilus", gives crap loads of errors on boot up, programs start slow and run slow, etc...

10.04 NBR was much better.

Which Multi-Touch devices will this support? (1)

GrantRobertson (973370) | more than 3 years ago | (#33935198)

So will the multi-touch work on my Fujitsu T4310 Lifebook? It has a multi-touch capacitive touch screen which works great in Windows 7.

Missing Plugin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33935506)

Your website has missing plugins. Please install them, before you post such an article.

Unity sucks on netbooks (2, Insightful)

a_nonamiss (743253) | more than 3 years ago | (#33936852)

I will say from experience that Unity sucks a big fat one on netbooks. I'm not talking about old netbooks, either. I just bought a brand new HP Mini 210 and an Acer AO532h Both have an Atom N450, which isn't the fastest processor in the world, but Unity runs like a slideshow on both of them. It's supposed to be a distribution optimized for netbooks. The dock is almost unusable because of the lag, and it launches apps slow as hell. The 10.04 netbook interface was much faster and more responsive. Sure Unity is (or could be) slick and pretty, but the netbook remix isn't supposed to be about slick and pretty. It's supposed to be about fast and easy performance on sub-standard hardware.

I think at this point it might be entirely appropriate to separate the netbook distro from a tablet distro. Tablet PC's have substantially more horsepower than netbooks, the two projects have completely different goals. Why have them in a single distro? On my netbook I ended up hacking in the old netbook interface and it works great, but what I did is out of the reach of most people that the Ubuntu community is trying to attract. If they could get this OS on $250 netbooks from Wal-Mart, maybe the general public would realize that Linux doesn't suck, and isn't hard to use. I shouldn't need to re-compile my kernel to figure that out.

Music in the video? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33938556)

Anybody recognizes the music used in the Unity and uTouch video?

Press Esc to exist full screen video (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33939468)

If you look closely at the full screen video it say "Press Esc to exit full screen video" :)

Magic Mouse (1)

ironjaw33 (1645357) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942456)

I can say that my Magic Mouse now works flawlessly with 10.10, while past versions required a kernel module that was pretty flaky.

Where is it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33944238)

What multitouch? He just clicked with his fingers. The definition of 'try hard'.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?