Re: Module Proposal: GNOME Shell

On Tue, 2010-04-06 at 11:40 +1000, Andrew Cowie wrote:
> On Sun, 2010-04-04 at 09:24 -0400, Owen Taylor wrote:
> > Let me phrase it a little differently then - it's not a problem that
> > GNOME is able to fix. If there is demand, I assume NVIDIA will work on
> > xrandr support.
> Yeah, but given how long NVIDIA has been a part of our community (hey,
> at least they provided Linux drivers years and years before anyone else
> did),
> and given that there are huge numbers of people who have nvidia chips
> (and sure, it's easy to mock people for not having hardware that runs a
> non non-free driver, but the reality is most laptops don't give you any
> choice [or, rather, once you're at the price point and form factor you
> want, you're unlikely to have any awareness from there] — and most
> stores encourage customers to buy "descrete graphics" rather than
> "integrated graphics"),
> and given how long those of us with such chips have been without modern
> xrandr support despite having made a stink about it,
> I'm not sure we can expect that they will work on $feature more than
> they already have.
> Sure the cards work. Of course they do. But it's awfully jarring to the
> user experience to have such radically different means for configuring
> displays between one machine and another. And that's just
> `gnome-display-properties` vs `nvidia-settings`.
> Anyway, I think you're on the right track to presume 3D capability, but
> I don't think we should be so dismissive of concerns from people on less
> capable hardware or those who are remoting or virtualized. Especially in
> the later case, that's how lots of people preview things like new Linux
> releases, so we're exposed to risk of people forming unfortunate first
> impressions.

I don't think I'm being dismissive, what I'm saying is that we can't let
the lack of xrandr support in the NVIDIA driver be a blocking issue for
creating a modern desktop.

As far as NVIDIA is concerned, the only thing they care about is the
proprietary driver - they've recently dropped even the pretence of
support for the obfuscated 2D-only driver.

So GNOME 3 doesn't change anything for them - right now, today anybody
using a driver supported by NVIDIA has:

 A) A non-functional display configuration tool shipped with the
    operating system

 B) A very powerful and confusing tool shipped with the driver.

The same will be true in GNOME 3, unless things change on the NVIDIA

- Owen

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