Linked by Rayiner Hashem & Eugenia Loli-Queru on Mon 24th Nov 2003 16:24 UTC
Original OSNews Interviews Today we are very happy to publish a very interesting Q&A with major members: the founder Havoc Pennington (also of Debian, Gnome and Red Hat fame), Waldo Bastian (of SuSE & KDE fame), Keith Packard and Jim Gettys (of X/XFree86/fontconfig/w3c fame) and David Zeuthen, a new member who's taking over the ambitious HAL project. In the article, we discuss about general goals, status and issues, the role of KDE/Qt in the road to interoperability with Gnome/GTK+, HAL (with new screenshots), the new X Server aiming to replace XFree86 and we even have an exclusive preliminary screenshot of a version of Mac OS X's Exposé window management feature for this new X Server! This is one article not to be missed if you are into Unix/Linux desktop!
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@Kendall Bennett
by Rayiner Hashem on Mon 24th Nov 2003 17:47 UTC

Actually, no I don't. I don't think that Keith Packard was stating that as known fact, but rather just offering a conjecture. Apple does have a DRI-like model, but only for OpenGL, not Quartz rendering. Quartz 2D rendering, unless something has changed drastically in Panther without Apple hyping it, is still done via the CPU. In fact, the big improvement in besides Quartz Extreme (which we know is just the compositor) 10.2 was hardware acceleration of window scrolling (essentially a bit-blit). Nowhere in Apple's literature is anything about hardware acceleration of Quartz 2D mentioned (and it really is rather complicated --- you can't, for example, use the card's regular 2D line operations because they aren't anti-aliased). In fact, their SIGGRAPH presentation confirms that 2D rendering is done via the CPU ;)

Anyway, if the new X server gives us 2D via hardware, that will put it on par with Longhorn. I especially like the 6-month estimate that Jim Gettys gave ;)

PS> One further clarification. Raster was measuring the performance of Render vs imlib for a number of compositing operations. While a simple composit was much faster via Render (thanks to NVIDIA's hardware acceleration) anything that involved scaling was much slower. My guess is that NVIDIA's acceleration only covers the simple case of non-scaled compositing. This would certainly make sense --- since the primary user of Render (Xft, which uses it to compose AA text) doesn't use any scaling features.