X Gesture Extension Introduction

Chase Douglas chase.douglas at canonical.com
Mon Aug 16 08:12:25 PDT 2010

Hi all,

Two months ago we started a project at Canonical to try to bring
multitouch and gesture support to Ubuntu. You might have seen me poke my
head in here as I was learning all about the X input subsystem :).

We see multitouch and gesture support as two separate pieces, with the
latter depending on the former. We hope to help support development of
an implementation of the X Input 2.1 extension for multitouch, and we
would like to contribute our efforts towards a gesture stack through X
as well.

During our development, we tried to come up with the best solutions for
supporting gestures through X. We thought of many different mechanisms,
and threw many away :), to come to what we believe is a good first draft
of an X Gesture extension. We implemented an early version of this
extension in Ubuntu Maverick, and we learned a lot through our research
and development. We now believe that our gesture extension proposal
meets our needs going forward, and is extensible enough for everyone to
use in ways we haven't thought of.

I'll be following up this email with the first draft proposal of the
extension protocol. It is based heavily in form and function on XInput 2
defined by Peter Hutterer, who I owe a great deal of gratitude for
helping me understand core X input concepts when I was first learning
all about them a few months ago.

I would also like to thank Henrik Rdyberg, Stephen Webb, Rafi Ruben,
Carlos Garnacho, Neil Patel, David Siegel, Cody Russell, Ikbel
Boulabiar, Christian Giordano, John Lea, and everyone else who has
helped us distill our thoughts on gestures into this proposal.

I look forward to your comments and suggestions, and I hope we can
develop great user interfaces in Linux through our collaboration.


-- Chase 

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