Compositor/Window Manager for Multitouch

Chase Douglas chase.douglas at
Tue Jul 5 10:20:00 PDT 2011

On 06/28/2011 07:55 AM, Kai Wohlfahrt wrote:
> I hadn't actually seen uTouch before, looks interesting. However I think
> the difference is that (for now) it seems to be an adaption to use some
> multitouch features on a standard gnome/unity/whatever desktop.

There's a distinction between uTouch and Unity. uTouch is just the
multitouch gesture stack. The uTouch GEIS library is a low level C API
that allows for simple and complex gesture interactions. Unity uses GEIS
to hook up gesture events to window manager functions.

> What I'm thinking about is a different UI designed around multitouch,
> something like this:
> <> perhaps (I don't
> like their approach, but you get the idea...). Features
> from might be interesting as
> well. 

I looked at the two videos and uTouch supports almost every bit of
multitouch functionality shown.

> At the moment, I think it may be more worthwhile to write something new
> for Wayland, and avoid dealing with the headaches of placing this on top
> of something that wasn't designed with this type of interaction in
> mind. If you think this a compiz plugin would be a workable solution,
> I'll have another look at that approach, it'd probably be easier to
> implement.

Unity is actually just a glorified compiz plugin.

Based on your questions and phrasing, it sounds like you really aren't
interested in Wayland itself as much as you are interested in a
reasonable foundation for a window manager project. Based on what I
understand, you would be better served to write a compiz plugin now
rather than try to write a window manager from scratch. Raw touch input
isn't even part of the Wayland protocol yet :(.


-- Chase

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