X always must have a cursor

Peter Hutterer peter.hutterer at who-t.net
Tue Jul 14 19:12:50 PDT 2009

On Tue, Jul 14, 2009 at 07:06:14PM -0700, Sean Estabrooks wrote:
> On Wed, 15 Jul 2009 11:46:33 +1000
> Peter Hutterer <peter.hutterer at who-t.net> wrote:
> > (I assume that you're not referring to the visible shape but to the concept
> > of having a cursor/sprite/pointer)
> > 
> > The pointer is your virtual input point on the GUI. Without it, you cannot
> > know where the next click from your mouse/touchpad/etc. is going to. For
> > direct-touch interfaces you obviously don't need the visible shape since
> > your finger provides the location information, but you still need the cursor
> > concept to tell the applications where you touched.
> But that's just it, why is a mouse/touchpad/etc required?   What's wrong with
> only having keyboard input exclusively without any pointing device at all?

the concept of having one pointer is built-in into the X protocol. so while you
could remove the pointer from the server, applications will fail in quite
interesting ways because they don't expect it. believe me, I've tried.

however, nothing in X requires you to _use_ a pointing device.
I realize that some applications UI do not provide sufficient alternatives
for keyboard navigation. That's not the X server's fault though.

> > In the example you mentioned above - if the user drags a finger across the
> > screen, what else do you suggest should happen?
> How about: nothing at all.

wouldn't the simple solution then be to deactivate the touchscreen?


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