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Ex-Red Hat Employee Matthew Garrett Comments On the State of XMir

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the no-longer-a-mir-trifle dept.

Graphics 88

First time accepted submitter slack_justyb writes "Matthew Garrett, former employee of Red Hat, comments on the current state of XMir and Canonical's recent decision to not ship XMir as the default display server in Ubuntu 13.10. Noting the current issues outstanding in XMir, the features yet to be implemented, the security loopholes, and Intel's recent rejection to support Mir in general. All of this leading Garrett to the conclusion that 'It's clear that XMir has turned into a larger project than Canonical had originally anticipated, but that's hardly surprising.'"

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88 comments

XMir is dead. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025133)

Ubuntu is barely used by anyone as it is (try to understand that Slashdot users are the vast minority)...XMir's usage rate will now be so low that it won't garner enough support to survive much longer.

Re:XMir is dead. (3, Interesting)

kthreadd (1558445) | about 7 months ago | (#45025183)

Do you know of any actual popularity statistics? Pretty much every "non-techie" Linux user I know runs Ubuntu, and quite a lot of the techies too. That's not representational of course, and some real hard numbers would be interesting.

Re:XMir is dead. (1)

goose-incarnated (1145029) | about 7 months ago | (#45025215)

Seconded. Even though many long-time users are switching to Mint or similar, I believe that Ubuntu still commands the lions share of the linux-on-desktop-or-laptop market.

Re:XMir is dead. (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025303)

But when you consider the entire Linux "market": desktops, servers,embedded - and every other use that's not visible, Ubuntu may not be as popular as it looks.

Who runs an Ubuntu web server? Or router?

But yes, stats would settle any conjecture.

Re:XMir is dead. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025373)

Who is going to run X, Mir, Wayland, or fucking SurfaceFlinger on a web server or router? You don't run any desktop environment on those systems.

Uh yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025543)

Who is going to run X, Mir, Wayland, or fucking SurfaceFlinger on a web server or router? You don't run any desktop environment on those systems.

What do you do when you use GUI tools for configuration?

Re:Uh yeah (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025603)

Kill yourself?

Re:Uh yeah (-1, Troll)

jedidiah (1196) | about 7 months ago | (#45025617)

That's the beauty of X. I can run a GUI on a machine that doesn't even have a framebuffer and I can do so from the other side of the planet.

When this comes up in the "inevitable future", will I be stuck running an entire desktop environment on that router and replicating that entire desktop through something like VNC?

Yeeech!

Re:Uh yeah (3, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | about 7 months ago | (#45025779)

X is nice in that it is sort-of network transparent, but now that RDP can do it's magic at the application level, it's probably worth going that route. X can be very, very slow over a typical DSL or cable connection if using anything more complicated than an xterm. RDP can do a whole Windows desktop over the same connection with a lot more responsiveness. Heck, even VNC beats X on lower speed connections, but I've never seen an application-level implementation of that.

Re:Uh yeah (0)

jedidiah (1196) | about 7 months ago | (#45027235)

> X can be very, very slow over a typical DSL or cable connection if using anything more complicated than an xterm.

Caching and compression solve that problem quite nicely. The end result is something that is perkier across two relatively slow Internet endpoints than VNC is across a Gigabit LAN.

Re:Uh yeah (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 7 months ago | (#45030637)

Can you link me to a how-to? I have no luck just using ssh compression, I think you need something like jpeg.

Re:Uh yeah (1)

WuphonsReach (684551) | about 7 months ago | (#45036985)

Try either FreeNX/NX or X2GO for the equivalent of RDP.

Re:Uh yeah (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 7 months ago | (#45037403)

FreeNX is like magic compared to ssh -C, but it's decidedly not plain old X - it's conceptually the same kind of thing as RDP, but more tailored to X directly. Still - caching and compression on a wrapper to X. I wish my admin would put it on our boxes. I stopped following NX after they went closed-source, so thanks for the link to X2GO - it looks like they carry the torch for open source NX now.

Re:Uh yeah (3, Insightful)

DrXym (126579) | about 7 months ago | (#45025897)

The same is true of VNC. Just because a machine has no display, or even display hardware doesn't mean it can't listen on a port and shove bitmaps down it.

Of course in the case of a router, or web server, the question is why someone would want to use VNC or X to configure it. It would make more sense in either case to build a web based UI and shove all the rendering out to the client in their web browser.

Re:XMir is dead. (2)

binarylarry (1338699) | about 7 months ago | (#45025447)

This discussion is obviously about the Linux Desktop, you fuck wit.

Re:XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026505)

you fuck wit

fuck with what; Candlejack?

Re:XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45027863)

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the kind of response we've come to expect from Linux enthusiasts. Keep up those high stands, Larry.

Re:XMir is dead. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025459)

Who runs an Ubuntu web server?

Sadly far too many idiots...

Re:XMir is dead. (2)

quadrox (1174915) | about 7 months ago | (#45025957)

My webserver is currently running ubuntu (server edition without X), could someone please clarify why that makes me an idiot?

Re:XMir is dead. (1)

gfxguy (98788) | about 7 months ago | (#45026101)

Most of the websites (and db servers) I've created for my company are Ubuntu Server... I don't deal with heavy security implications because they are all internally facing, although the ports are locked up and we haven't had any problems, and while I don't pay that much attention, I haven't heard of Ubuntu Server being any less secure than other linux distributions.

No X Server, go gui at all, and no need for one.

Re:XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025587)

Quite a percentage aparantly (old article though): http://www.zdnet.com/blog/open-source/is-ubuntu-becoming-a-big-name-in-enterprise-linux-servers/10602

Re:XMir is dead. (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 7 months ago | (#45025811)

I ran precisely one Ubuntu server, but they compiled Apache with some fucked up options and it would not, no matter what I did, run one of my PHP sites. In frustration, I through Debian on another machine, and it worked fine. At that point I decided never to try Ubuntu on a server again, and since then I've basically dumped it entire.

Re:XMir is dead. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45028099)

In frustration, I through Debian on another machine

I through Debian threw the window. sheesh... facepalm. Where did all you third graders come from? You THREW Debian on it, moron.

Re:XMir is dead. (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025871)

Who runs an Ubuntu web server? Or router?

The company I currently work for has several thousand servers all running Ubuntu Server, which in turn is running OpenStack and the supporting infrastructure.

Ubuntu is what you use if you want to use Debian but need commercial support (and yes, we have made use of that support on several occasions)

Re:XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026999)

I run several Ubuntu server LTS's in an enterprise environment. That said, they are the _exception_, I run twice that many RHEL/CentOS installations in the same environment. So far though, no problems with our administration staff or developers - unless you are hooked on something amateur like authconfig-tui/gtk from RHEL, you'll be just fine. The same QLogic HBA driversin RHEL are in Ubuntu - albeit they are newer in Ubuntu.

Re: XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45033097)

Although I really don't understand but the fact is a lot of people run Ubuntu server

Re:XMir is dead. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025463)

I find the XMir situation unfortunate. I switched to Ubuntu this past year for a clean, nice font, supported linux distro. Hopefully, this will not be the start of the end of Ubuntu.

Yes, I could go Mint, Debian, etc... I still like the fact that there is a company behind the download - its a trust issue. I know it's all opensource so I can see the code, but let' be real, who's got the time to read each line...

Maybe back to OpenSUSE.

Re:XMir is dead. (1)

znrt (2424692) | about 7 months ago | (#45027457)

I still like the fact that there is a company behind the download - its a trust issue

you just blew my mind.

Re:XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026859)

I believe that Ubuntu still commands the lions share

See? That's your problem. Nobody will be able to convince of anything else, and any kind of argument or indicators you disagree with will be met with moving goalposts etc. Because you are a believer.

Re:XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025627)

Wikimedia's traffic stats [wikimedia.org] and Steam's Hardware Survey [steampowered.com] show Ubuntu way ahead of other desktop distributions.

Re:XMir is dead. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45027943)

No, this is Linux Other which is way ahead of any distro. Look again ;)

Re:XMir is dead. (1)

loufoque (1400831) | about 7 months ago | (#45028661)

A number of people also use Linux Mint and Debian, especially since 2011/2012 when Ubuntu fucked up pretty badly with Unity.

Firmware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025217)

Does Ubuntu still ship with non-free firmware? I know they still lure users into running non-free software.

Re:Firmware (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025353)

It boots on post-1990s hardware, so signs point to "yes".

Poor Mattthew Garrett (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025427)

Still suffering from the butthurt he got when Ubuntu sided with Scott James Remnant over him in a technical dispute which then led to MG quitting like a petulant little bitch. Just like what happen when he was with Debian. Now he just takes to shitting on Canonical whenever he can. The fact is, Canonical is concentrating on getting Ubuntu Touch ready and with the technical difficulties with XMir, and made the prudent decision not to dump it as a default on the Ubuntu user base.

BTW, the while he may not work for Red Hat, he's still on the fedora advisory board. Can somebody say "conflict of interest"?

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025581)

Totally agree. ...and Fedora isn't known at all for dumping not-ready-for-prime time tech on its user base.

Next up: Lennart Poettering on his brand new X server replacement. Oh yes, its totally ready to go....

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (4, Insightful)

segedunum (883035) | about 7 months ago | (#45025621)

I never liked him ever since I saw the way he started outright glorifying 'Secure Boot' and how there would be no problem with Microsoft being gatekeeper.

As for Mir, forking away is not a great thing to see but Canonical have the right to do it.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (1)

Gravis Zero (934156) | about 7 months ago | (#45025797)

BTW, the while he may not work for Red Hat, he's still on the fedora advisory board. Can somebody say "conflict of interest"?

conflict of interest

are you happy now?

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025827)

I'm glad we can just attack the messenger, and ignore the message.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (1)

akanouras (1431981) | about 7 months ago | (#45026775)

Garrett's blog posts are an equal split between insight-sharing and attention-whoring, yet the free software press keeps focusing on the latter.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45028563)

The nature of blogging is attention whoring. Your post is attention whoring. My post is attention whoring. If you don't want attention, just shut up. Now we got that out of the way, can we discuss the issues now? If you are referring to him being overly dramatic, I just don't see it.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (1)

akanouras (1431981) | about 7 months ago | (#45028735)

I was referring to his moral crusades, and how they've apparently turned the public opinion a bit against him (my take on what we're seeing in the comments).

Trust me, I'm more than glad that he keeps sharing his views on technical matters.

Anyway, I know my post was poorly worded, however try looking at it in the GP's context.

Re: Poor Mattthew Garrett (1)

slack_justyb (862874) | about 7 months ago | (#45025985)

I seriously doubt that exchange ever got him fired for anything. He is known for being vocal about the people around him. If there was anything he was being vocal about that might have forced him to quit Red Hat, it would have been him calling Ted Ts'o a rape apologist [dreamwidth.org]. But the truth of the matter is that MG left of his own will to go work for Nebula [dreamwidth.org] to advise on their Open Stack solution.

Now it is true that he still sits on the Fedora board, and you have a point about maybe just maybe, that influences his post a bit. That was the whole point of posting the story. Is this a case of Red Hat influence or is MG painting a pretty honest picture? I have no idea where you were going with the first paragraph of your comment and I wish it wasn't there because it diminishes the part of your comment that's got a valid argument.

Re: Poor Mattthew Garrett (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026181)

OP didn't say he got fired.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 7 months ago | (#45026135)

Where is the "conflict of interest"? I was unaware that he had influence and stood to gain financially from XMir and a competing product. Could you point me to the links, or do you not know what the term means?

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (5, Informative)

mjg59 (864833) | about 7 months ago | (#45026327)

I stopped working on Ubuntu because decisions were increasingly being made internally rather than anywhere that volunteer contributors could influence them. The "Click here to instantly break your mouse" thing was just the final straw. There's a component to the story that involves beer and a hilarious reply vs. reply all error on an iPhone, but I don't remember it being about anyone siding with Scott - there's a picture somewhere of me deactivating my Ubuntu membership a few minutes after sending https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-devel/2008-February/025141.html [ubuntu.com] , which hardly gave them time to.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45027633)

Honestly?

Trackpads are shit and will always be shit until they move them out from under the users' palms. They need to be de-activatable.

That said, the right answer is to disable it and popup a window saying "Click here to confirm in 10..9.." if they can click there, they get to keep the setting. Just like video setting changes. Oh look, I'm not the only one with that idea! [ubuntu.com]

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45028281)

Trackpads are shit... says everyone who's never purchased a Macbook.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45030025)

AGREE! Macbook/Pro trackpads are the bomb!

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45032301)

Trackpads are shit... says everyone who's never purchased a Macbook.

/owns a macbook

Uses a USB Mouse unless I don't have a hard surface like a tabletop in my current location.

Re:Poor Mattthew Garrett (0)

diegocg (1680514) | about 7 months ago | (#45027103)

I don't see where is he "shitting" on Canonical. It's obvious that he has done quite a lot of research before writing it (he has actually read the code), and he is pretty neutral about Canonical, he is just points outs facts. It's a good post.

Which makes me think that it's you who is butthurt, and the one shitting on other people. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if you hadn't read the post before writing your comment.

"Ubuntu Phone" (5, Insightful)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | about 7 months ago | (#45025477)

FTFA:

Mir could have done the same, but doesn't because of a conscious design decision - in the Ubuntu Phone world, clients stop doing things when they're told to. Ubuntu Desktop is expected to behave the same way.

So they're letting design decisions for their phone interface dictate how they implement their desktop interface. It's the same stupidity that the Gnome developers are engaged in. A desktop is not "just another kind of phone," and if you treat your primary users as second-class citizens, they'll all jump ship.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (1)

macromorgan (2020426) | about 7 months ago | (#45025559)

So they're letting design decisions for their phone interface dictate how they implement their desktop interface.

You mean Ubuntu is about to adopt Metro?

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (1)

div_2n (525075) | about 7 months ago | (#45025659)

Canonical is making the gamble that the future of Linux desktop computing as a major platform, if there is one, will be in the mobile space via convergence (i.e. use your phone as a desktop on occasion by hooking it to a keyboard/mouse/monitor). If they can pull off a great phone experience that offers a compelling Android/iPhone alternative, it's a win for them. Even if not a single user decides to use it as a desktop and only as a phone, it's a win for them. It will offer Canonical a potentially sizable revenue stream they've never had before.

That being said, their intent, as I understand it, is to make neither mobile nor desktop second class citizens -- to put them on the same level playing field. Whether they achieve this lofty goal remains to be seen.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (2)

DrXym (126579) | about 7 months ago | (#45025965)

I think it would be very useful if I could stuff a phone or tablet into a dock and suddenly I have a full blown desktop. I think Microsoft and Ubuntu are far better placed to deliver this than either Apple or Google are although technically there is no reason that stops any of them doing it.

Re: "Ubuntu Phone" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026431)

Apple won't do that because it would reduce the need for a yearly the-shiney upgrade. People would attach non-Apple keyboards and mice with multiple buttons.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45027325)

The price and computing power of a mobile coupled with the convenience of a desktop! Finally!

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (1)

DrXym (126579) | about 7 months ago | (#45033533)

Windows 8 tablets running the latest Atom processors are 2-3x more more powerful than a netbook I still use for trips away. It's quite feasible to envisage a phone / tablet which makes a perfectly decent desktop for word processing, browsing the web, doing a presentation etc.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (2)

krammit (540755) | about 7 months ago | (#45025669)

This is about the behavior of the display server, not the user interface. So no, this has nothing to do with using a unified interface for different form factors.

Deep breath. Exhale.

You're welcome.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (1)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | about 7 months ago | (#45026031)

This is about the behavior of the display server, not the user interface. So no, this has nothing to do with using a unified interface for different form factors.

Hm. Let's see what Ubuntu says:

The purpose of Mir is to enable the development of the next generation Unity. (http://wiki.ubuntu.com/Mir [ubuntu.com])

From the very beginning, Unity's concepts were tailored with a converged world in mind... (http://wiki.ubuntu.com/UnityNextSpec [ubuntu.com])

The purpose of Mir is to support their "converged interface." They are making design decisions of the display server based on the design requirements of their mobile interface, ignoring the existing desktop interface.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026287)

Mobile has a completely different IPC model that can't be supported by a 'desktop' style GUI. Specifically, you can't have applications sending each other input events willy-nilly.

So, to some extent this will spill over. However that doesn't imply they're going to foist something like Metro on desktop users.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (1)

Guy Harris (3803) | about 7 months ago | (#45028667)

Mobile has a completely different IPC model that can't be supported by a 'desktop' style GUI. Specifically, you can't have applications sending each other input events willy-nilly.

What about "I use this machine a lot while I'm not sitting down" prevents applications from sending each other input events as they choose?

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025681)

Ubuntu doesn't care about who their users are now; they care about future hypothetical mobile users, because the desktop is allegedly dead.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | about 7 months ago | (#45025815)

if you treat your primary users as second-class citizens, they'll all jump ship.

There are more phone users than desktop users. So maybe it's worth declaring them primary.

Re:"Ubuntu Phone" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025955)

I don't think Ubuntu has more phone users than desktop users.

Baah not this crap again (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025597)

There's really not that much wrong with Canonical or Ubuntu.
Think for yourself, in light of Snowden and others, why everyone is throwing dirt at it.

If you think the "damned new UI things" sucks, try those yourself. I'd guess 75% of you who mock it have not used it for a week.

I consider myself a power user and was horrified of the Dash and other things. AFter using those for awhile, now they make sense. I actually work much, much faster with those. YEs sometimes I have to dip into the console to fix things, but I'm not exactly mom and pop surf-and-pay-bills-and-mail kind of user. I do work in the console basically all the time.

AND the whole UI layer looks nice and consistent, relatively minimal (but not as minimal as I'd like it to be really). It looks like a tool and not like some rip-off of Windows 95.

For the Amazon spyware things, I just turn it off in privacy settings. Or uninstall that lens. Or hand-hack the Python files...

Maybe with Mir Canonical is about to eat a hat full of poop for not going along with Wayland. But they want to capitalize on hardware which runs Android without involving hardware OEMs, this way they can provide a good experience out of the box for any hardware where one can build an own Android with accelerated graphics.

Re:Baah not this crap again (2)

jedidiah (1196) | about 7 months ago | (#45025673)

> I consider myself a power user and was horrified of the Dash and other things. AFter using those for awhile,

The dash is a solution in search of a problem.

It is something that should be an optional extra rather than the sole thing that is forced on you with older interfaces being sabotaged by unnecessary architectural decisions.

"You will like it eventually if it's forced on you" is hardly a compelling argument.

Re:Baah not this crap again (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026007)

"You will like it eventually if it's forced on you" is hardly a compelling argument.

>forced

Because none of that other UI desktop stuff exists on the Ubuntu repos. Nope, not at all. You're not allowed to install them even if they do.

This is how stupid you are.

Re:Baah not this crap again (1)

bornagainpenguin (1209106) | about 7 months ago | (#45030629)

Because none of that other UI desktop stuff exists on the Ubuntu repos. Nope, not at all. You're not allowed to install them even if they do.

You mean like Gnome 2.xx? Go ahead and try, see how far you get. Even trying to install the MATE fork results in a multitude of breakage all over the system, because of dependencies related to the increasingly ironic "Unity" desktop.

I've been looking for a replacement to Ubuntu for a while now and have begun moving on to Debian as a result with frequent stops here and there to try out other distros to see if any come close to working as well for me as earlier versions of Ubuntu did. So far the only one which does is Debian and even then there's all sorts of stuff that I have to relearn while missing the way Ubuntu used to handle it...

So yeah, 'forced' is an apt description. I (and many others) have been forced to make a decision between keeping our Gnome 2.xx desktop and Ubuntu. Sadly unlike those who still cling to Windows XP those of us who use Linux are unable to simply use the older versions because of how quickly bitrot sets in and how difficult it becomes to install applications.

Re:Baah not this crap again (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45027043)

"You will like it eventually if it's forced on you" is hardly a compelling argument.

But it is a valid one. Just look at all the times Facebook made changes to their UI; they're still going strong despite all the "outrage" each time they make changes.

the woes of XMir (3, Informative)

Gravis Zero (934156) | about 7 months ago | (#45025769)

It's still missing features

XMir doesn't support colour profiles. XRandR properties aren't exposed, so there's no way to control TV output encoding or overscan. There's still no hardware cursor support. Switching to XMir now would reduce functionality without providing any user-visible gain.

no hardware cursor support? talk about a dealbreaker!

Re:the woes of XMir (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45025919)

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Re:the woes of XMir (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 7 months ago | (#45026621)

Whatever you guys do, don't wreak havoc on this site! The link was clearly posted with good intent. I think we can all agree that the AC did us a huge favor by polluting Slashdot, er I mean posting it to Slashdot for us.

Re:the woes of XMir (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026845)

fuck off nigger. go spam for your kike master elsewhere.

Re:the woes of XMir (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45026963)

It's not ready. Lesson learned about writing a display server in 6 months and going for a production release in distro.

Re:the woes of XMir (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45029825)

The implication is that if it doesn't support even the most basic features that are already available in what it intends to replace, it's fucking useless. I'm guessing you already knew that and decided only to read the part of the quote you wanted.

Around and around we go (1)

Jmac217 (3006299) | about 7 months ago | (#45027687)

We are cycling around a wheel of and racing to reinvention. All of Canonical's efforts could have been paired up with Wayland to make a one-size-fits-all display server and it probably would have been finished and ready to deploy by this point. It's opposition like Mir that is stagnating much needed innovation. I imagine Canonical's thoughts going something like "Oh, since Wayland isn't moving fast enough - even though it's been in development for years - we'll just make our own, from scratch." If they didn't think it'd cost them this much effort, then they're more arrogant than I thought. The one thing about them I've learned over the years is they love biting off more than they can chew - only to spit it right back out onto the plate. If there is one positive thing to come out of this is that it lit a fire under Wayland's butt.

Things that make Linux a total joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45027709)

While nerdy cretins think the greater world exists to listen to an endless litany of 'technical' excuses, things that fail to work 'out of the box' will NEVER (never, never never) earn public acceptance. But then again, the nerdy Linux cretins say "good, we don't want ordinary people ever feeling comfortable with Linux".

That the simple act of rendering to the screen is still something billions of dollars of Linux investment still can't get right disgusts me. It is NOT a difficult technical problem to solve.

1) old hardware crap should NOT be supported in hardware mode by new Linux distributions. All older hardware lacking sufficient technical ability should be driven by software solutions alone. This means being grown up, and selecting a base-line standard for video hardware. All video hardware from recent times allow complete software solutions to baseline 2D rendering requirements.

2) having selected a baseline hardware standard for hardware video acceleration (probably GPU parts capable of Open GL ES2.0), the OS use of the hardware should be as clean and minimum as possible. Clever stuff should be left ENTIRELY to the domain of the apps themselves.

'Clever' 'clever' crap in Linux is actually mind-boggling stupid as an idea. Hardcore video/GPU apps simply want clean access to the GPU hardware, rendering through their own libraries, and expecting the OS screen composition engine to display the final result on the screen. IS THIS ROCKET SCIENCE?

It doesn't matter, thank god. Android for the desktop (which arrives when the first mains-powered ARM parts hit the market in 2014 with AMD and Nvidia graphics cores) will be the only 'Linux' that matters for 99.999% of all users.

In reality, Linux is ruined by the idiots that fail to comprehend how computers have changed. An OS should NEVER be about libraries, or power-functions. That thinking became irrelevant when the resources of even the cheapest computer exploded. Today, every app can incorporate first-class libraries to do all the heavy lifting. The OS simply needs to provide a sane shell, proper message handling of VERY low latency, and the usual hardware management. Otherwise, performance apps simply need the OS to "get out of the damned way".

Problem is, the people that work on Linux are 'fiddlers', "control freaks", "hackers", and technical introverts. None of them cares to see (or has the psychological make-up to see) the greater picture. For that, we have to turn to the OS projects from Apple and Google (and now Valve). The pity is that increasing numbers of Windows users would love to see a non-Microsoft future, but will not migrate to a joke of a platform dominated by profoundly dysfunctional types.

PS can there be any excuse for a 'fat' OS in this age? What possible justification can there be for loading the OS with complexity? All a 'fat' OS ensures is massively increased situations for bugs and errors, and a vastly slower computer as almost every piece of software has to run through insane numbers of very inefficient abstraction layers. If people need such abstraction, it should be in the coding environment, not in the underlying structures of the OS.

Re:Things that make Linux a total joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45030309)

You're not strictly wrong about everything you say but the fact is that operating systems have user-environments shoved onto them (despite this being at least one different layer away from the OS itself) for a reason.

In specific your rant contradicts itself:
"While nerdy cretins think the greater world exists to listen to an endless litany of 'technical' excuses, things that fail to work 'out of the box' will NEVER (never, never never) earn public acceptance. But then again, the nerdy Linux cretins say "good, we don't want ordinary people ever feeling comfortable with Linux".
"That the simple act of rendering to the screen is still something billions of dollars of Linux investment still can't get right disgusts me. It is NOT a difficult technical problem to solve."

This is contradicted by:
"In reality, Linux is ruined by the idiots that fail to comprehend how computers have changed. An OS should NEVER be about libraries, or power-functions. That thinking became irrelevant when the resources of even the cheapest computer exploded. Today, every app can incorporate first-class libraries to do all the heavy lifting. The OS simply needs to provide a sane shell, proper message handling of VERY low latency, and the usual hardware management. Otherwise, performance apps simply need the OS to "get out of the damned way"."

Rather than just say 'STFU noob' I will explain:
Security auditing and performance run directly counter, and the potential vectors for buffer overrun and other such attacks only increase as time and minimum supported feature list increases. If Ubuntu wants to put together a reasonably-acceptable smart phone UI experience they have to; 1) substantially redo the basic UI assumptions (text sizes and behaviours being part of that) from desktop tradition, 2) support bluetooth, tethering, GPS everything, software behaviour auditing (to find malware and merely misbehaving/broken software), and a wide range of different (often conflicting) supporting libraries to run the minimum things a user expects these days.
But that's not all, not by a long-shot. On top of this they need; 3) support for whatever user-rooting that the phone companies INSIST on before deploying it on their phones (non-negotiable, the carriers could've killed the iPhone if they wanted and Canonical isn't Apple), 4) support for both their own native and carrier-specific commerce, updating and tracking features (because how else will Ubuntu make money? the carrier certainly isn't going to pay them) that actually get them some RoI.

I agree that some of those requirements are ridiculous bullshit, but that doesn't mean Canonical can, or will, skip them.

Mobile != Server (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45029865)

I understand the desire to capture the mobile market. However, like Microsoft, Canonical is making a mistake trying to merge the mobile platform with the workstation/server platform. They're different devices requiring different interfaces, and what's desirable in one is horrible in the other (see Windows 8). Since they've decided to follow that model I've decided to part ways with Ubuntu. I'm in the process of migrating my systems to Slackware, and as soon as I have a good process down all of my clients will be making the transition as well.

Surprise and antici......pation (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 7 months ago | (#45033425)

It's clear that XMir has turned into a larger project than Canonical had originally anticipated, but that's hardly surprising.

Isn't "something you didn't anticipate" almost the defintion of "a surprise"?

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