Centralization of graphical awesomeness

Carsten Haitzler (The Rasterman) raster at rasterman.com
Mon Oct 26 10:54:18 CET 2009

On Mon, 26 Oct 2009 09:27:16 +0000 (GMT) hab keen oh ne <baba_melone at yahoo.de>

> Hi community,
> Im using the neo freerunner for 2 years now as an every day phone. It has
> great features which allow combined with the openness a great functionality
> (for instance I use the accelerator as some kind of wii controller). But
> theres one huge problem I have. Its ugly, and the ui is slow, too slow,
> despite maybe QtMoko. I cannot hand the phone to my parents and say 'Here,
> take a call'. Besides, under SHR scrolling between the applications is so
> slow, it even decreases the usability. And the sex appeal of the SHR GUI is
> near to nothing. So I suggest to centralize those issues at least on one wiki
> page with the aim to: get graphical hardware acceleration with the glamo chip
> (even 2d acceleration would be great for the gui) provide pretty UIs,
> especially some SHR themes would be great. create a good web browser offering
> smooth scrolling. Greetings, MArtin.

1. acceleration isn't goint to help.. because what you gain in accel, you'll
lose in the now slower software fallbacks. the problem is glamo simply CANNOT
accelerate all the operations you want
2. and those operations it can, come with a nice list of gotchas that make
implementation of acceleration awful.
3. you can't speed up one of the nastiest bits of glamo. the 7mb/sec write
rates to glamo. thats slower than my slow 100mbit network. the local graphcis
chip is slower than the machine on the other side of my home. put that into
perspective. it's got a high res screen, a very very very slow bus to access
video memory. it's just bad. this is always going to bottleneck something.
4. the video bus is SHARED with sd card disk IO. so that 7m/sec needs to be
shared when doing IO on the micro-sd card.

you know how gta02 works better? run in qvga. it's 1/4 the # of pixels to draw.
you'll get something like a 4x speedup. most phones with that generation of cpu
are qvga anyway. there's a reason iphone and all the other phones look nicer.
they use avga or hvga (240x320 or 320x480). iphone is by far a more powerful
system with no nasty bottleneck to video memory (and as of the 3gs is has
opengles 2.0  hardware which is decent-ish).

the gta02's achillies heel is the slow memory bus access to video ram and the
large # of pixels needing drawing. gta02 would have appeared to perform much
better if it was qvga only.

gta02 is like trying to pull a caravan with a ride-on lawnmower. then
complaining why it's so slow. ITS a LAWNMOWER PULLING A CARAVAN! THAT'S WHY!.
you either get a car or something decent to pull the caravan (ie buy a modern
phone built on modern technology. iphone 3gs, palm pre, nokia n900, samsung 360
n/h1, etc. etc.) or... you replace the caravan with something smaller and not
so flashy that you can still sleep in.

you want speed? you will need to give up something. if you still want it to
look nice, then drop pixels. its the simplest and easiest solution. its the
right resolution for that cpu anyway. the glamo will still hurt you, but not as

------------- Codito, ergo sum - "I code, therefore I am" --------------
The Rasterman (Carsten Haitzler)    raster at rasterman.com

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