XGL Linux Desktop GUI

15 Sep 2006 - 9:34am
7 years ago
9 replies
836 reads
Dave Malouf
2005

http://chris.pirillo.com/2006/09/06/vistas-ui-is-better-than-this/

I came across this today via Digg.com.
it is a video presentation from a Linux developer who is demonstrating
some pretty neat graphic stuff using a Linux desktop with KDE and XGL.

While it is all impressive, I have some questions about the "why?"
factor and more importantly this multi-desktop cubing effect ... Is that
really something people would use? Most people have a hard enough time
understand having more than one window open at a time--desktops?

Just wondering what people think.

-- dave

--

David (Heller) Malouf
Vice President
dave(at)ixda(dot)org
http://ixda.org/
http://synapticburn.com/

AIM: bolinhanyc // Y!: dave_ux //
MSN: hippiefunk(at)hotmail.com // Gtalk: dave.ixd(at)gmail.com

Comments

15 Sep 2006 - 11:18am
Lorne Trudeau
2006

I guess there is a reason it is called "eye candy". It looks sweet but
doesn't add a lot of substance.
However, I think many of those effects mimic true physics of physical
representations, which can certainly lead to an easier to understand
metaphor.
The multi-desktop cubing effect is interesting as well. Firstly,
multiple desktops have their place. They are much more common with power
users, but can be quite effective for grouping related applications and
creating workspaces. Secondly, the cubing effect is not really
necessary, but by creating that metaphor the concept of multiple
desktops becomes easier to learn and to keep track of.
Thanks for the article, I'm going to give Kororaa a shot as soon as I
get some free time.
Lorne

-----Original Message-----
From: discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
[mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com] On Behalf Of
Dave (Heller) Malouf
Sent: Friday, September 15, 2006 7:34 AM
To: discuss
Subject: [IxDA Discuss] XGL Linux Desktop GUI

[Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
material.]

http://chris.pirillo.com/2006/09/06/vistas-ui-is-better-than-this/

I came across this today via Digg.com.
it is a video presentation from a Linux developer who is demonstrating
some pretty neat graphic stuff using a Linux desktop with KDE and XGL.

While it is all impressive, I have some questions about the "why?"
factor and more importantly this multi-desktop cubing effect ... Is that

really something people would use? Most people have a hard enough time
understand having more than one window open at a time--desktops?

Just wondering what people think.

-- dave

--

David (Heller) Malouf
Vice President
dave(at)ixda(dot)org
http://ixda.org/
http://synapticburn.com/

AIM: bolinhanyc // Y!: dave_ux //
MSN: hippiefunk(at)hotmail.com // Gtalk: dave.ixd(at)gmail.com

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15 Sep 2006 - 12:29pm
Alain D. M. G. ...
2003

Sure, it's impressive, but Sun's project Looking Glass is even more so,
doing about the same thing with more useful constraints.

http://www.sun.com/software/looking_glass/

and also:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Looking_Glass

Alain Vaillancourt

--- "Dave (Heller) Malouf" <dave at ixda.org> a écrit :

> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
> http://chris.pirillo.com/2006/09/06/vistas-ui-is-better-than-this/
>
> I came across this today via Digg.com.
> it is a video presentation from a Linux developer who is
> demonstrating
> some pretty neat graphic stuff using a Linux desktop with KDE and
> XGL.
>
> While it is all impressive, I have some questions about the "why?"
> factor and more importantly this multi-desktop cubing effect ... Is
> that
> really something people would use? Most people have a hard enough
> time
> understand having more than one window open at a time--desktops?
>
> Just wondering what people think.
>
> -- dave
>
> --
>
> David (Heller) Malouf
> Vice President
> dave(at)ixda(dot)org
> http://ixda.org/
> http://synapticburn.com/
>
> AIM: bolinhanyc // Y!: dave_ux //
> MSN: hippiefunk(at)hotmail.com // Gtalk: dave.ixd(at)gmail.com
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
> List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
> (Un)Subscription Options ... http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
> Announcements List ......... http://subscribe-announce.ixda.org/
> Questions .................. lists at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://ixda.org/
> Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>

__________________________________________________________
Lèche-vitrine ou lèche-écran ?
magasinage.yahoo.ca

15 Sep 2006 - 12:52pm
Esteban Barahona
2006

I try it, but I see it more of a demo of what can be done not of a truly
improved, more usable interface design.

I will design a user interface for Unix as a personal project. It will be
done because I'm frustrated about many behaviours of current free
interfaces, because I like to learn, investigate and analize about
human-computer interaction and design solutions (specially something that
can be used by many, including me) and because there's virtually zero IxD
jobs where I live. Fame is something I care little, I prefer reputation to
get jobs. Part of the inspiration is Aqua (Mac OS X interface), but there's
many ideas elsewhere.

Hopefully someone will code it (I can code in C++ but idealy I prefer to do
the design of the user experience and it's not trivial so it will take lots
of time ...I can help coding, there's some friends that will like to learn
OpenGL and Xgl, compiz, Cairo, etc can be reused).

I have the general idea and will upload it to my personal website as an
"introduction" and "manual" of how to use that interface (it will not be
"real", just the idea of how its look 'n feel™) so that the community (of
interaction designers, software developers and end users) can discuss it. I
prefer OpenGL, but it can be implemented in other ways (the interface itself
is 2D, 3D can be used for the apps)... An online flash demo version can be
done too.

It will be called ZenSUI (originaly Zen Simple User Interface, but now I'm
thinking it can be Zen Simple User Interaction). I was reluctant to speak
about this project to anyone that I don't know in "reality" ...but I was
happy to find this mailing list and was planning to talk about ZenSUI when
the "intro/manual" was uploaded.

The current status is: a logo and domain <http://www.zensui.org>, discussion
with some software developers and some ideas drawed (with pencil and ink)
and collected in a carpet.

2006/9/15, Dave (Heller) Malouf <dave en ixda.org>:
>
> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
> http://chris.pirillo.com/2006/09/06/vistas-ui-is-better-than-this/
>
> I came across this today via Digg.com.
> it is a video presentation from a Linux developer who is demonstrating
> some pretty neat graphic stuff using a Linux desktop with KDE and XGL.
>
> While it is all impressive, I have some questions about the "why?"
> factor and more importantly this multi-desktop cubing effect ... Is that
> really something people would use? Most people have a hard enough time
> understand having more than one window open at a time--desktops?
>
> Just wondering what people think.
>
> -- dave
>
> --
>
> David (Heller) Malouf
> Vice President
> dave(at)ixda(dot)org
> http://ixda.org/
> http://synapticburn.com/
>
> AIM: bolinhanyc // Y!: dave_ux //
> MSN: hippiefunk(at)hotmail.com // Gtalk: dave.ixd(at)gmail.com
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss en ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
> List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
> (Un)Subscription Options ... http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
> Announcements List ......... http://subscribe-announce.ixda.org/
> Questions .................. lists en ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://ixda.org/
> Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>

15 Sep 2006 - 1:08pm
Máirín Duffy
2005

Esteban Barahona wrote:
> I will design a user interface for Unix as a personal project. It will be
> done because I'm frustrated about many behaviours of current free
> interfaces, because I like to learn, investigate and analize about
> human-computer interaction and design solutions (specially something that
> can be used by many, including me) and because there's virtually zero IxD
> jobs where I live.

Might I suggest contributing to an already-existing free desktop project
such as GNOME [1], KDE [2], or Freedesktop.org [3] (focused on
interoperability and functionality shared between the two)? You might
find the GNOME Usability project [4] useful as a venue to suggest design
improvements to the GNOME desktop in particular.

~m

[1] http://www.gnome.org/
[2] http://www.kde.org/
[3] http://www.freedesktop.org/
[4] http://developer.gnome.org/projects/gup/

---
Máirín Duffy <duffy at redhat.com>
Interaction Designer
Red Hat, Inc.

16 Sep 2006 - 12:15am
seele@obso1337.org
2005

On Friday 15 September 2006 14:08, Máirín Duffy wrote:
> Might I suggest contributing to an already-existing free desktop project
> such as GNOME [1], KDE [2], or Freedesktop.org [3] (focused on
> interoperability and functionality shared between the two)? You might
> find the GNOME Usability project [4] useful as a venue to suggest design
> improvements to the GNOME desktop in particular.

I know you're from Gnome and all, but let us not forget there is also the KDE
Usability Project: usability.kde.org. Also OpenUsability (openusability.org)
has interaction designers and usability engineers who work with both
environments as well as other projects.

--
Celeste 'seele' Paul
www.obso1337.org

18 Sep 2006 - 8:53am
Máirín Duffy
2005

Celeste 'seele' Paul wrote:
> I know you're from Gnome and all, but let us not forget there is also the KDE
> Usability Project: usability.kde.org.

Thanks; since I'm not involved with KDE I didn't know where to refer
folks to or whether or not their project was active. :)

> Also OpenUsability (openusability.org)
> has interaction designers and usability engineers who work with both
> environments as well as other projects.

Have you had much luck with OpenUsability? I've not had much luck with
it - seemed like a ghost town, at least for the projects I looked into.
For example, the forums on the Gimp OpenUsability project page seemed
like a lot of 'I think it should work like this...' without much
involvement by the actual devels. I've not heard any success stories
from the site (but it would be great to hear some.)

Thanks,
~m

18 Sep 2006 - 9:11am
seele@obso1337.org
2005

On Monday 18 September 2006 09:53, Máirín Duffy wrote:
> Celeste 'seele' Paul wrote:
> > Also OpenUsability (openusability.org)
> > has interaction designers and usability engineers who work with both
> > environments as well as other projects.
>
> Have you had much luck with OpenUsability? I've not had much luck with
> it - seemed like a ghost town, at least for the projects I looked into.
> For example, the forums on the Gimp OpenUsability project page seemed
> like a lot of 'I think it should work like this...' without much
> involvement by the actual devels. I've not heard any success stories
> from the site (but it would be great to hear some.)

I'm actually very involved -- I am an e.V. member and the unofficial (or maybe
official, who knows) North American go to person. I work mostly in KDE,
however I do a lot of OSDL and FSG work (basically working on Linux standards
for other projects to adopt), and I will be a mentor for our student projects
this Spring.

The website isnt a good representation of the work and involvement, there is
actually a lot of stuff going on. There is a lot of interest by many people
(who signed up for accounts), however only a handful of people are very
involved. The same goes with the projects, many are willing to sign up
however may not have the resources to dedicate to actual implementation of
design changes, or may not be interesting enough for specialists to want to
contribute to.

Wikipedia has been a good example of our work, Ellen Reitmayr ran the study at
the beginning of the year and I presented the findings at Wikimania in August
which was very well received. There has been some pretty good work in KDE
involved KDE PIM and Koffice as well as some random applications, and the
GIMP design project is pretty active.

We mostly organize via email and IRC (#openusability on freenode.net), and
many of the active contributors are from Germany. Perhaps Peter could add
something?

~ Celeste

--
Celeste 'seele' Paul
www.obso1337.org

18 Sep 2006 - 6:18pm
peter sikking
2006

>> Have you had much luck with OpenUsability? I've not had much luck
>> with
>> it - seemed like a ghost town, at least for the projects I looked
>> into.

Yep, the v1.0 platform you are still seeing is simply not achieving
what we were expecting it to do. A V2.0 is in preparation.

what was that proverb about consultant not able to consult themselves?

>> For example, the forums on the Gimp OpenUsability project page seemed
>> like a lot of 'I think it should work like this...' without much
>> involvement by the actual devels. I've not heard any success stories
>> from the site (but it would be great to hear some.)

what happened there is that 100 self-proclaimed experts (smartypants
users) started helping the GIMP. After initial enthusiasm by the
GIMP folks they started realising these 'experts' wanted just
their own special features implemented.

I was not involved with the GIMP back them, I was still busy with
our openOffice Impress redesign project. No the GIMP will go through
a full interaction architecture + usability process.

OU is planning to keep the smartypants out by looking at the
professional qualifications of the experts who want to help us.

openusability.org is a platform to get the usability/interaction
expert together with an open source project that is looking for one.
I have called is a dating service before. if the two hit it off,
the expert become part off the team of the open source project and
the project arranges their own communication.

--ps

principal user interaction architect
man + machine interface works

http://mmiworks.net/blog : on interaction architecture

19 Sep 2006 - 1:25am
jonathan d p fe...
2006

hi.

On Sep 15, 2006, at 8:34 AM, Dave (Heller) Malouf wrote:

> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
> http://chris.pirillo.com/2006/09/06/vistas-ui-is-better-than-this/
>
> I came across this today via Digg.com.
> it is a video presentation from a Linux developer who is demonstrating
> some pretty neat graphic stuff using a Linux desktop with KDE and XGL.
>
> While it is all impressive, I have some questions about the "why?"
> factor and more importantly this multi-desktop cubing effect ... Is
> that
> really something people would use? Most people have a hard enough time
> understand having more than one window open at a time--desktops?

Cool eye candy, sure, but eye candy frequently sells software---
despite our efforts to promote usability over eye-candy. I use
multiple desktops. I was surprised by a novice Windows user saying
she wanted to use multiple desktops too.

But more importantly, in order for computers to draw the rich
graphics users now expect, developers have realized that they must
take advantage of OpenGL and/or other software libraries that provide
access to hardware accelerated graphics--- and not just for things we
think would require those graphics. Games are 3D, not simply because
it's the current fad, but because the hardware support is there, and
boy is it ever! Don't forget that the fastest way to render lots of
visual elements is to use hardware acceleration--- not the CPU. CPU
based rendering is many orders of magnitude slower than the
specialized hardware available in even low-end PC's and Mac's. Moving
to OpenGL based rendering systems (such as Xgl) is a brilliant way to
expand the horizons of computing, IMHO.

That said, I applaud projects that seek to actually identify the
potential benefits and usefulness of 3D graphical interactions. In
order to push this discussion a little, what's so hard about 3D
usability? (I know these questions are too vague to answer--- they're
largely here to provoke thought and discussion.) What causes our
usability knowledge to stutter in the face of working with an
additional dimension? Don't we live in 3D after all? Has anyone here
worked on a 3D application--- who is willing to share what he or she
learned? What books are available detailing how to create usable 3D
applications?

Most of our usability metrics (laws, etc) are based on the
constraints of 2D, what are the 3D analogues? Why are some users
totally intimidated by 3D representations? Why do some 3D simulations
make some people feel seasick? Why would a "more constrained" system,
like Sun's Project Looking Glass be better than the *different*
constraints offered in an XGL + KDE or GNOME or GNUStep desktop? The
KDE and GNOME and GNUStep people are not ignorant about usability
issues--- so how can one say "Foo's thing is more constrained, thus
it is better" when this software is in an early development stage
anyway? What constraints are actually useful--- and how would one
measure that usefulness?

Anyway, food for discussion, or more likely, thought.

have a nice day.yad
jdpf

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