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LinuxPower.org: The Berlin Project: Interview with lead developer Stefan Seefeld

Mar 19, 2001, 20:26 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Christian Schaller)

[ Thanks to Christian Schaller for this link. ]

"The core of the Unix GUI has for many years been X. Whether X is really a good choice to be the engine of a modern desktop GUI is something which is being discussed from time to time in various Linux community forums. Personally I am not one of those who feel that X is ready for retirement, but when I by coincidence ran across Stefan Seefeld on IRC a little while back I jumped at the opportunity to do an interview with him. Stefan Seefeld is the leader of the Berlin Project, the project which most people refer to when alternatives to X are being discussed. So if you want to learn more about the project that many feel could pose a serious challenge to X's dominance of the Unix desktop, please read on."

" Tell us briefly about Berlin and what you are trying to accomplish?"

"Stefan: Our goal is to create a modern user interface that is modular and extensible; a user interface that is adaptable to a wide range of hardware as well as very different user requirements."

"There has been much work put into X lately with additions like OpenGL/GLX support and anti-aliasing, are the some technical barriers you feel that X can't easily solve which makes Berlin a better choice for the future?"

"Stefan: The points you are making are all related to one particular implementation of X, not the X protocol itself. The new renderer is usable as an extension, i.e. both the server as well as the client have to be aware of it. This is due to the fact that the X protocol isn't sufficiently abstract to make high quality font rendering an implementation detail. In fact, most of the interesting developments around Graphical User Interfaces are taking place on the client side, i.e. renderers like libart, or compound document architectures (CDAs) such as Bonobo. We feel that this is the wrong place for it, i.e. these are things that belong into one central place - the display server."

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