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LinuxPower.org: Interview with Jim Gettys

Jun 12, 2001, 04:07 (24 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Christian Schaller)

LinuxPower interviews Jim Gettys: one of the original X Window developers. Though the discussion ranges from Mr. Gettys' role on the GNOME Foundation to the need for a good audio server, a large portion is spent discussing the use of X on handhelds as opposed to framebuffers, why X isn't as bloated as many claim, and why a network-transparent foundation makes sense for the GUI's of tomorrow's handhelds.

"No, I believe very strongly that either GTK+fb or QtE are dead ends. Our experience in the market (beyond the hacker community) is that the major attraction is the ability to share with little or no hassle applications written for the desktop: while the applications may need reworking to deal with the screen size and touchscreen, there are many applications not written for GNOME (or KDE). Network transparency is worth a lot in PDA's such as an iPAQ: it is really a full fledged networked computer in your hand, which can take advantage of other displays, keyboards, etc. in the user's environment when convenient. If I have a lot of text to enter, I don't want to use a touch-screen unless I must, and I don't want to have to build two applications, the way Palm or WinCE does. Others will experimentally determine that frame buffer based environments are a waste of time, but we won't..."

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