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Thread: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

  1. #1
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    Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    This will probably end up locked and buried in Recurring Discussions, but I feel the need to express my sincere concern for the future of Ubuntu if Canonical does not cease development of Mir and return to supporting and improving Wayland.

    I honestly don't mean to antagonize the developers of Mir. I understand that they have jobs to do and that they may even have justifications for Mir. I simply disagree with the way Canonical turned on Wayland and invested resources into such a huge project that will not be supported by anything else and is going to take a very long time to result in anything useful. There has already been a huge investment in Wayland and it is just starting to pay off. I feel that Canonical has, at a very critical moment, stabbed Wayland in the back, emptied its pockets, and left it for dead.

    I filed a bug report on the issue: Bug #1195623 "Waste of resources and development: likely to ostracize Ubuntu from the linux community".

    It's my hope that people will join in the discussion here and add their valid complaints against canonical's decision to the bug report.
    Last edited by quequotion; June 28th, 2013 at 09:40 AM. Reason: type-o

  2. #2
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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    Moved, as this is not a support request.

    If the debate is kept in a civilised manner there's no need for closing the thread.
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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    Understood. Indeed, I'm not looking for flaming or bashing here but valid reasons to reverse this course of development.

    I notice in your signature a list of Ubuntu derivatives. None of them will be compatible with Mir.

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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    Quote Originally Posted by quequotion View Post
    Understood. Indeed, I'm not looking for flaming or bashing here but valid reasons to reverse this course of development.
    Of course you don't, why else post such emotional guff as "I feel that Canonical has, at a very critical moment, stabbed Wayland in the back, emptied its pockets, and left it for dead."

    None of them will be compatible with Mir[/URL].
    Mir Plans In 13.10 - (Flavours running in Mir)

    Whether they want it or not is another question.

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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    It may sound like emotional guff, but it's intended to make clear what's happened.

    Canonical promised to develop Wayland, then took the lessons learned and abandoned it. Canonical was certainly not the only party supporting or developing Wayland, but they were one of the most important. Without dedication from Canonical, development of Wayland will be handled by mostly volunteers who may come from myriad other projects. Wayland took a long time to get to where it is now, but in time will be a viable alternative to xorg. Unfortunately, the next stage of development could take much longer now that Canonical has withdrawn their support. We'll have to see which wins the race to replace xorg now that other projects, like Gnome and KDE, are dedicated to Wayland while Canonical is proceeding with Mir on their own.

    Canonical is investing in building Unity 8 support for Mir, but other projects are invited to build Mir backends too. We are currently revising and improving our documentation to make this development work easier, and questions on this topic are welcomed
    Stop and think about this statement: "invited to build Mir backends"
    Canonical has no interest in helping the developers of other desktop environments to add compatibility.* In return, I doubt those developers are going to become interested developing for Mir, especially after all the time and work they've already invested in developing for Wayland. The teams supporting these desktop environments are not as big as Canonical and they don't have the resources to begin on a whole new framework, especially one that's hardly off to a start itself and isn't supported by any other platforms.

    *"add compatiblity" may be a gross understatement. I'm not an expert on the issue, but I gather that the changes necessary to work with Mir are fundamental and in no way as simple as adding a backend.
    Last edited by quequotion; June 28th, 2013 at 11:35 AM. Reason: Wayland stil has siginificant supporters: intel, linux foundation, etc.

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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    I would not worry about Mir, after all Kubuntu, Xubuntu and the others are mainly community developed.
    This means Mir can mainly stay in the main ubuntu but have no effect on the others.
    Plus there is hope that Mir would get accepted by the other DE's, its slowly happening so I would not give up on Mir.

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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    In concession, perhaps the some of the same things were said about Wayland early in it's development. Why not improve xorg? Why develop for something that isn't supported by many major distributions? etc.

    Wayland eventually did garner wider support, and the design is too different from xorg to justify modifying xorg into Wayland. One of the biggest pushes to get Wayland that far was Canonical's promise to use it in future versions of Ubuntu.

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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    Quote Originally Posted by MadmanRB View Post
    I would not worry about Mir, after all Kubuntu, Xubuntu and the others are mainly community developed.
    This means Mir can mainly stay in the main ubuntu but have no effect on the others.
    Thus, Kubuntu will not be going with Mir. Hopefully it will be as simple as having your favorite derivative's repository enabled and simply not installing Mir.
    Plus there is hope that Mir would get accepted by the other DE's, its slowly happening so I would not give up on Mir.
    Anything is possible. If Mir does come together as a viable display server, and the possibility of compatibly with non-Unity environments exists, then maybe.
    At the moment, there is only minimal talk of this and a few shaky tests with XMir. Worse yet is the impression that Canonical isn't really concerned with this ever happening.

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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    There are some interesting comment's in SmSpillaz's blog on the topic:

    http://smspillaz.wordpress.com/2013/...isplay-server/

    Particularly:
    "Wayland is clearly a project lead by Intel and Red Hat."
    Wayland will proceed without Canonical's help, but I do think it's taken a big hit in losing support from the backer of Ubuntu. Ubuntu is intended to be the linux for the masses, and it's one of the most widespread distributions for home users (especially when including its many derivatives).
    Last edited by quequotion; June 28th, 2013 at 11:30 AM.

  10. #10
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    Re: Mir: Stop this train before it derails Ubuntu.

    If Wayland has merit, it will survive. Unfortunately I have some doubts about Wayland's viability.

    Wayland's approach seems to be "do as little as possible and push everything out to the clients". Because of this, there is exactly one desktop environment that can run on Wayland after five years of development.

    Mir is just over a year old, and runs Unity 8. As with Wayland, there is an X compatibility layer. Unlike Wayland, Mir will actually be shipping by default in a distro later this year.

    Ubuntu was already the black sheep of Linux. Adopting Wayland will not help, and Mir did not hinder Ubuntu's reputation any more than already. It is tall-poppy syndrome.

    Mir won't hurt interoperability either, X11 is the common language of all three display servers. Target X11 and your app will run on any Linux distro.

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