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Drafting Plans For X12, The X11 Successor

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  • #16
    X11 may be outdated but for many people it's working well. The biggest pain for users (I am not talking about developers) is perhaps the outdated X Screen protocol with its problematic dual-head, multicard and hybrid graphics support.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by siride View Post
      Another idiot who doesn't understand how X11 and network transparency.

      There's nothing about network transparency that says you can't share buffers like in Wayland when the client and server are on the same machine. Just like X11 currently uses fast local sockets and shared memory for communication on the local machine, X12 could do the same with buffers. In fact, X11 already uses shared memory to send large amounts of data between the client and server. It's a little clunky, but it could be cleaned up.
      James Gosling argues, on a paper from 10 years ago, against network transparency. He talks about how he would re-invent a modern graphics system and his thoughts match 100% the Wayland design. Basically this is just common sense and I find odd how long the current flawed design has survived trough the years. Other than unix most other systems have had much better graphics infrastructure, i.e. leaner and meaner.

      Window System Design:
      If I had it to do over again in 2002.

      James Gosling
      December 9, 2002


      In the deep dark past I have been involved in building window systems. I did the original design and implementation of both the Andrew and NeWS window systems. Both of which predated X11. They shared with X11 the architectural feature of being networked: clients sent messages to the server over TCP connections. I occasionally get asked “if you had to do it over again, what would you do? Would you do the same thing”. The answer is a strong no. It’s now 20 years later, and the technological landscape is totally different. So here is what I would do. But first...
      http://hack.org/mc/texts/gosling-wsd.pdf
      Last edited by zoomblab; 10-16-2011, 03:16 PM.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Milyardo View Post
        This statement is non-nonsensical. You're attempting the compare the method the server uses for composition with the method the server uses for communication with the client.
        Wayland is both a server and a compositor, so it does not make sense to distinguish between communication and composition. Indeed, the most common communication between the server and a client is "my buffer is ready for composition" (client->server) and "redraw yourself" (server->client).

        Why is this important? Because, unlike X11, Wayland can access the client framebuffer and compose directly in GPU memory. This is impossible in the current X11 architecture and will remain impossible unless the compositor can make some assumptions that cannot currently be made. What compiz, mutter, kwin currently do is copy of the contents of each X window pixmap into a GLX pixmap, upload this to an OpenGL texture and compose these textures on screen.

        Not only is the Wayland approach faster, it is also simpler to implement and much more robust. How anyone could consider the X approach sane or desirable is beyond me. Just consider that it's 2011 and X still cannot display an image on screen with proper vsync.

        Also you understanding of how Wayland composites is also backwards. It's currently X that uses frame buffers while it communicates with the compositor on what to to render.
        See above. Wayland uses KMS buffers, the rough equivalent of OpenGL framebuffers (which is what my terminology was refering at).

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        • #19
          Maybe what we really need is a good method of abstract UI structure/layout/event serialization (which of course would be grudgingly standardized after about 50 years of debate, just in time to be obsoleted by retina-mounted voxel displays). That would allow both network transparency at the UI level and greater flexibility in the final rendering. Why should most application processes have any sense of "the display", even one encapsulated by a toolkit library?

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          • #20
            Originally posted by 89c51 View Post
            at some point it will provide the same functionality.
            No it won't, because it's not meant to. For example, X includes functionality to render lines and ellipses and arcs and whatnot, and Wayland will never include this, because the Wayland developers believe that this shouldn't be done in the display server.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by r1348 View Post
              Seriously? Edward Cullen?

              Even eternal creatures care about X.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by curaga View Post
                Even eternal creatures care about X.
                Yes, it reminds them of their childhood in ancient history.

                No it won't, because it's not meant to. For example, X includes functionality to render lines and ellipses and arcs and whatnot, and Wayland will never include this, because the Wayland developers believe that this shouldn't be done in the display server.
                Which is a good thing, since drawing functionality in the server has been proven to be a bad idea. There is a reason why noone is using X fonts and lines nowadays. FreeType, Pango and a bazillion rendering toolkits and X extensions have replaced the outdated, ugly, inefficient and downright painful core X drawing functions.

                Hardware and software has evolved in ways that X didn't, indeed *couldn't*, expect when it was designed. The assumptions it makes on hardware capabilities and software requirements have long been rendered obsolete and all that remains is legacy cruft that is counterproductive. Removing this cruft is the obvious way forward - but X cannot do this without breaking everything.

                And since you will need a clean break anyway, why not redesign X from scratch for modern hardware and software, without any assumptions and ill-designed APIs holding it back? That's what Wayland is trying to do: rethink the display server using the three decades worth of knowledge we have gained since X was conceived.

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                • #23
                  Oh boy... Here we go again.

                  While the entire X.org code is increasingly raping the X11 protocol from the inside-out by replacing everything to run locally, there are these morons that believe that:
                  1. Draw line here;
                  2. Wait for three layers of 'network transparancy' to read the mouse;
                  3. Draw triangle there.
                  Is absolutely great for networking in this day and age of the compoziting, multi-touch dynamic UI's.

                  Ask yourself: who are you kidding?

                  PS: I say dump X.org, go with Wayland and make widget toolkits network transparent instead. Problem solved.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by V!NCENT View Post
                    PS: I say dump X.org, go with Wayland and make widget toolkits network transparent instead. Problem solved.
                    Ooh yes, going from "the underlying system is transparent" to "every single thing needs to be rewritten and updated separately" is a fun idea. Down that road madness lies.

                    As of today, I can fire up Xwin on windows, check the "X forwarding"-box in putty, and get perfectly functional and nice forwarded versions of firefox (GTK?), kate (qt4) and R (raw xlib?) without any further work - and your suggested replacement is almost physically unpleasant to imagine.
                    Last edited by dnebdal; 10-17-2011, 09:59 AM.

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                    • #25
                      The 'problem' with X can be easily solved.

                      This daunting 'problem' that many of you have with X can easily be solved - by each of you, instantly.

                      Just stop using it. And use, instead, what you think is better. Or better yet, go create something that you think is better. This is what Free Software and Open Source are all about; instead of endlessly whining about 'problems' you can use something else or you can fix what you see is a 'problem'.

                      There are those of us who have accepted X for what it is, have created raw Xlib applications, have built worldwide customer bases, are earning good money and are supporting our customers with little or no tribulation, all because of X being what it is, doing what it does best. And you who have not created or use raw Xlib applications, who have no use for the network transparency which allows displays & input sessions to be attached to local area networks and to the Internet itself, incessantly harp about your hate for X, for it not being what you want it to be.

                      Take your energy and your visions and your time and go create whatever it is that you want, what you think is better, and be about it already. And stop trying to tell us that what we have built, what we rely on, what makes us money, what makes our customers happy, does not work.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by dnebdal View Post
                        Ooh yes, going from "the underlying system is transparent" to "every single thing needs to be rewritten and updated separately" is a fun idea. Down that road madness lies.
                        Ah yes, so then why does GTK, Qt and KDE already put work into this madness? Because it's so stupid?

                        As of today, I can fire up Xwin on windows, check the "X forwarding"-box in putty, and get perfectly functional and nice forwarded versions of firefox (GTK?), kate (qt4) and R (raw xlib?) without any further work - and your suggested replacement is almost physically unpleasant to imagine.
                        Maybe you should send a letter to Microsoft sayign that they realy should've sticked with DOS, because they could fire up all their apps that they couldn't on this NT thing.

                        Originally posted by Remote User View Post
                        This daunting 'problem' that many of you have with X can easily be solved - by each of you, instantly.

                        Just stop using it. And use, instead, what you think is better. Or better yet, go create something that you think is better. This is what Free Software and Open Source are all about; instead of endlessly whining about 'problems' you can use something else or you can fix what you see is a 'problem'.

                        There are those of us who have accepted X for what it is, have created raw Xlib applications, have built worldwide customer bases, are earning good money and are supporting our customers with little or no tribulation, all because of X being what it is, doing what it does best. And you who have not created or use raw Xlib applications, who have no use for the network transparency which allows displays & input sessions to be attached to local area networks and to the Internet itself, incessantly harp about your hate for X, for it not being what you want it to be.

                        Take your energy and your visions and your time and go create whatever it is that you want, what you think is better, and be about it already. And stop trying to tell us that what we have built, what we rely on, what makes us money, what makes our customers happy, does not work.
                        The way I see it is that there is this proposel for X12, and it's getting shot down by... you guys

                        Have a nice day...

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                        • #27
                          Sour grapes, Vincent?


                          The way I see it is that there is this proposel for X12, and it's getting shot down by... you guys

                          Have a nice day...
                          I am not going to be responsible for your frustration and disappointment, Vincent. I haven't spent one second of my life (and I'm 62) impeding you or anyone else. On the contrary, I have spent my life, and will continue to spend it, helping people who need apps that are more reliable, more versatile and more affordable because those apps have been built to make the most of what X offers. You have a lot of balls to suggest that I or anyone else in my position is preventing or impeding you from trying to use technology in a way that suits you. I accepted 'what is' and made something of it, the most that I could, while making whatever improvements I could. Why don't you simply do the same? Go blame somebody else because I am not 'your' problem.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Remote User View Post
                            I am not going to be responsible for your frustration and disappointment, Vincent. I haven't spent one second of my life (and I'm 62) impeding you or anyone else. On the contrary, I have spent my life, and will continue to spend it, helping people who need apps that are more reliable, more versatile and more affordable because those apps have been built to make the most of what X offers. You have a lot of balls to suggest that I or anyone else in my position is preventing or impeding you from trying to use technology in a way that suits you. I accepted 'what is' and made something of it, the most that I could, while making whatever improvements I could. Why don't you simply do the same? Go blame somebody else because I am not 'your' problem.
                            That's cool and all, but everytime something dares to 'advance', there are always people saying "Isn't what we have good enough?".

                            What you're basicaly saying is "I'm 62, therefore I'm wise. I made apps all my life, therefore I'm right. You have no right to defend a proposal, because you must do it yourself."

                            Excuse me, but with that kind of thinking we'd all still be using Pentium 4's, running Windows 2000 and Office 2003, browsing HTMLv2 for eternity with Firefox 1.0 on Flash enabled YouTube 480p, ordering VHS video's.

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                            • #29
                              No thanks, Vincent.

                              Originally posted by V!NCENT View Post
                              That's cool and all, but everytime something dares to 'advance', there are always people saying "Isn't what we have good enough?".

                              What you're basicaly saying is "I'm 62, therefore I'm wise. I made apps all my life, therefore I'm right. You have no right to defend a proposal, because you must do it yourself."

                              Excuse me, but with that kind of thinking we'd all still be using Pentium 4's, running Windows 2000 and Office 2003, browsing HTMLv2 for eternity with Firefox 1.0 on Flash enabled YouTube 480p, ordering VHS video's.
                              There is no need and no point in trying to paraphrase what I have written or to try to speak for me, then responding to what you yourself have written. I have merely said that I used what was available, including X , I built some new stuff in raw Xlib, including a suite of raw Xlib applications, and that this has worked for me. The many improvements to X over the decades have, of course, served to improve my applications. I am certainly not trying to tell you or anyone else that you should even try this approach, even if it has proven to be very successful. And I think you should refrain from presuming to take that smug, pedantic tone with me just because I succeeded in using the X model.

                              It is true that these applications ran very nicely on hardware designed in the early 90's, but that is nothing you should presume to ridicule me for. And as for what the plans are for the future presentation layer, well, that will be HTML5. So just give up your bogus assumptions and useless rant. I'm only saying that X has given me the opportunity to succeed, and you, or anyone who shares your viewpoint should be grown up enough to be able to deal with that fact.

                              One final point; When I began developing graphical apps there were hardly even any graphical computers available that the average person could buy, much less graphical toolkits, APIs or even standards. When X became available and advanced enough it was a very big deal - it was not only a tool that I could use to develop GUIs but also one that allowed me to throw those GUIs anywhere across the LAN and the Internet. In a time when the people who later would develop QT, GTK and other GUI toolkits were still in elementary school the challenges were a lot different than they are today, to say the least. You have a lot to learn, in my opinion, but you'll never learn it with the attitude you're showing me.
                              Last edited by Remote User; 10-17-2011, 01:29 PM.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Remote User View Post
                                And I think you should refrain from presuming to take that smug, pedantic tone with me just because I succeeded in using the X model.
                                This hole thing was never about you and your X-based business model You're creating your own problem here...

                                The fact, not some 'opinion', the fact is that X11 is so old now, that it is being replaced in its own refference implementation.

                                It may shock you, but in a year or so Windows 8 will be released. That will seriously set the tone for real-life tablet use. Now what would you be saying if a customer of yours wants your program/service/whatever it may be, running on his touch-based Windows 8 tablet? How "happy" is he going to be once you tell him that it's impossible.

                                Anyone else knowing how Xlib works? No. The entire point of toolkits like GTK+ and Qt is to abstract the horror. Even the X.org developpers have created XCB, because Xlib is such a freaking pain in the ass.

                                Now... Do you still think that I cannot like X12 or that I even remotely care about someone else's business?

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