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A First Look At The 2010 Linux Graphics Survey Results

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  • A First Look At The 2010 Linux Graphics Survey Results

    Phoronix: A First Look At The 2010 Linux Graphics Survey Results

    Earlier this month we started once again our annual Linux Graphics Survey in which we poll our readers about their choices and opinions concerning graphics cards, display drivers, and other graphics / X.Org related features of the Linux desktop. While this survey is still going on through the end of September -- so you still have time to participate -- here are the results from the first 6,300 people to submit their responses. We are publishing the results so far since there is the X Developers' Summit this week in Toulouse and some of these findings may prove to be useful during those discussions.

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=15275

  • #2
    "Only about 5% users are building from Git snapshots."

    Just wanted to point out that I selected "distribution supplied / repository", even though the package manager of my distro fetches sources from Git, builds and installs those. It still counts as "repository".

    So in other words, the survey assumes that distro supplied is different from Git sources.

    Comment


    • #3
      Michael, The pie charts you provided was more difficult to read than just plain text.
      Could you refrain from using pie charts in the future?

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      • #4
        Figures flawed?

        Hmmm... strange. One should expect that you get the amount of usage of graphic hardware brands when adding up the percentages of the specific drivers. Yet, this does not work, at least for Intel and AMD hardware. Even when adding the figures for the VESA driver, the percentage of drivers which work with AMD (Intel) hardware doesn't reflect the percentage of AMD (Intel) hardware in the pie plot above -- it's far too low.

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        • #5
          I find some of the results to be very surprising.

          20% of the users use Linux for "enthusiast gaming"? This can't be right.

          Similarly, less than 10% of the users caring about licensing would be very depressing if correct.

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          • #6
            Remember that some (or all?) of the questions allowed multiple answers. I think I ticked licensing but it wasn't the only one I ticked. I think I even chose enthusiast gamer along with mainstream user. I mainly play older games on Linux but I'd like to play newer ones too if the driver situation improves.

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            • #7
              Then those pie charts are flat-out wrong and misleading. Pie charts can only be used if the percentages sum up to 100.

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              • #8
                I agree. For most of the questions, it is likely that only one answer was given. Fair enough. But statements like "Less than 10% of the users are interested in licensing." are just completely false. Michael, even if the charts are misleading, at least get your facts straight in the text.

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                • #9
                  ok, survey is done. whats now? will you send it to bridgman or something?

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                  • #10
                    This would have been an opportunity to cross-reference data - this is unfortunately not possible with the reduced charts. Example:
                    - how many users of multiple displays actually want hot-plug? How many need hot-plug, but use only 1 monitor (i.e. plug in the projector for a presentation)?
                    - compare the percentage of binary vs. oss users by interests. Are people interested in video accel more likely to use binary drivers? Do "professional" users prefer the performance of binary drivers or the robustness of the OSS stack?
                    - are gamers more likely to pick nvidia over ati for wine gaming? By how much? Are there gamers with intel hardware?

                    Write a script to cross-reference everything that sounds reasonable and make a graph for each (labeled "GPU vendor for people who picked 'gaming enthusiast'" etc). Pick the graphs that deviate from the global average and point out the differences. I'm sure there are plenty of interesting results in there.

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                    • #11
                      A lot of the questions were multiple choice, yet you're using pie charts with the percentages adding up to 100 -- presumably by just adding all the responses together, and then dividing each one by the total.

                      This is wrong. The way to go would be to take the number of *respondents*, take that to be 100%, and for each available option, look at what percentage of the respondents selected it. The results could be displayed in a bar chart which goes from 0 to 100, for example.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by pingufunkybeat View Post
                        less than 10% of the users caring about licensing would be very depressing if correct.
                        I never understood why people deeply care about open source drivers. Does Microsoft spend any of their resources to develop drivers for various hardwares? To me, developing open source drivers makes sense only if the manufacturer isn't willing to provide Linux drivers. IMHO, writing and improving applications that compete and beat similar applications available on other platforms is better use of talented people's skills.

                        Cheers

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JantarMantar View Post
                          I never understood why people deeply care about open source drivers. Does Microsoft spend any of their resources to develop drivers for various hardwares? To me, developing open source drivers makes sense only if the manufacturer isn't willing to provide Linux drivers. IMHO, writing and improving applications that compete and beat similar applications available on other platforms is better use of talented people's skills.

                          Cheers
                          I believe you are entitled to your opinion and I'm not saying that this figure would be or should be 100% but it must surely be more than 10%. Michael has a duty as a news channel to report the results of this survey accurately. Vendors may read this statement or see it quoted elsewhere and consequently abandon any plans they might have had for open source driver development.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by JantarMantar View Post
                            I never understood why people deeply care about open source drivers. Does Microsoft spend any of their resources to develop drivers for various hardwares?
                            No, they just spend their resources in a certification process that hardware vendors won't pass unless they produce the drivers. That's not very useful unless you're running a monopoly operating system market.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by JantarMantar View Post
                              I never understood why people deeply care about open source drivers.
                              People deeply care about open source drivers because people care about open source software. The ability to inspect, understand and modify the software running on your computer. This has been the driving force behind the development of Linux, GNU, BSD, GNOME, KDE, Firefox, and a million other programs.

                              Drivers are no different. In some ways, they are even MORE important because your computer won't work without them. You can run your computer without OpenOffice, but you can't run it without video drivers.

                              Does Microsoft spend any of their resources to develop drivers for various hardwares?
                              Who cares? Microsoft is a company who makes profit by selling software. They don't spend their resources for increasing literacy or reducing domestic violence, but that doesn't mean that nobody should care about these things.

                              Many people use Linux (or similar operating systems) because they enjoy the freedoms they get with respect to inspecting, copying, upgrading and developing the software they run.

                              To me, developing open source drivers makes sense only if the manufacturer isn't willing to provide Linux drivers.
                              This is your point of view. From my point of view, Free Software is important because it lets you know what's running on your hardware, because it is generally free of charge (so people in poor countries can also use it), and can be kept running by a knowledgeable programmer long after a company stops updating a similar program.

                              I don't see Free Software as a second-rate replacement which is only used if you don't have the money for a Microsoft product. I see it as a more ethical and sustainable approach to software. Free drivers are important because they ensure that the whole system can remain free and can not be shut down by a single company.

                              Not all Linux users feel like this, and many simply run Linux because it's cuter, or faster, or cheaper. That's OK. But as a Linux user, you should be aware of what Free Software is about. You can start here: http://www.fsf.org/about/

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