Insisting on metaphors that exploit the device's weaknesses (Re: Centralization of graphical awesomeness)

Carsten Haitzler (The Rasterman) raster at
Thu Oct 29 08:28:31 CET 2009

On Thu, 29 Oct 2009 08:16:22 +0100 Petr Vanek <vanous at> said:

> On Wed, 28 Oct 2009 20:42:16 +1100
> Carsten Haitzler (The Rasterman) <raster at> (CH(R) wrote:
> >On Wed, 28 Oct 2009 11:27:03 +0200 "Michael 'Mickey' Lauer"
> ><mickey at> said:
> >
> >> >The problem is : on the freerunner we merely need something to
> >> >display some simple widgets, scroll the screen smoothly (because on
> >> >a small display you always need to scroll)
> >> 
> >> Why do all of you insist on using scrolling as the only metaphor to
> >> present excerpts of large content? Given the physical size of the
> >> display and the hardware constraints (touchscreen jitter, for a
> >> start... not going to comment on the Glamo) I think this is very
> >> questionable. There are other metaphors available that would fit the
> >> device's strengths much better. What about paging?
> >
> >good words mickey. good words. :) (i have a todo item for the scrole
> >rto have a page mode. it already has a page mode actually - but its a
> >scrolling one much like iphone's N pages of icons  - but it's infra to
> >simple provide some theme elements that you press and they jump
> >up/down/left/right a page and then do the jump - so it's mostly there.
> >it just hasn't been any priority for me - am working on an oldie
> >request to get rotatable objects.. which now works. under flux.. but
> >works and renders... image and text objects so far are working. in
> >theory all other basic object types too, but smart objects - not yet).
> While i agree i still wonder. i tried latest android on freerunner
> yesterday - most scrolling nice and smooth. had qtmoko on last week -
> the same (yes, i read the explanation why it works, but it works). now,
> in order not to put anybody down, i must say that for example scrolling
> in shr contact list IS smooth. so my question is: where exactly do we
> have scrolling issues? think about it. Then i tend to think about the
> Illume desktop, that is so much unfriendly to scrolling.

lots of alpha blending - if you have the 16bit engine you get no scale cache
(thats 32bit engine only). but worst.. is the font style. check carefully. text
has a soft dropshadow. that is drawn by 1. drawing the shadow first and that
draw 25 copies of the text with very faint alpha. THEN draw the text on top.
that is a pretty big expense. there is no text effect cache in evas at the
moment, so this really hits you. turn off the soft dropshadow effect in the
theme.. and watch it get 3 or 4 times faster (expedite has a test just for this
- on a desktop (in fps) i get 128 and 489 fps respectively just by having no
soft shadow on the text). thats pushing on close to 4 times faster. it's an
effect - that doesn't come cheaply. the alternative (an actual blur filter)
isn't too cheap either. but it's something that can be improved for sure. you
want it fast? turn it off. :)

> Raster, i meant to ask before but had no time: if we take etk toolkit
> and E window manager as for granted for SHR (hopefully with some
> choices, but  still), is there any other desktop module we could use
> instead of Illume? In your no-speak project, is there anything being

no. illume is the only thign usable that will give u a fullscreen windowing
policy in e at the moment. as i said before. i started a rewrite- illume2 is in
svn. its much cleaner and leaner designed to allow for replacable home screens
(ie a home window provides by either another e module or another process). as
well as "top shelf" (inf act any corner/region of the screen) can also be a
window provided by.. another module... or another process etc. its much more
like the kbd code. it's started. it's not usable. it's on the backburner until
a bunch of other tasks are done that are much higher priority.

> developed? What do you use on small device? Illume was ditched long time
> ago, is there not a replacement with attention? Anything you could
> recommend?

can't talk about it :)

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The Rasterman (Carsten Haitzler)    raster at

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