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GUI Graphics Open Source Software

3D Windowing System Developed Using Wayland, Oculus Rift 72

Posted by timothy
from the mind-the-vertigo dept.
An anonymous reader writes Developed as part of a university master thesis is this "truly 3D" windowing system environment. The 3D desktop was developed as a Qt Wayland compositor and output to an Oculus Rift display and then controlled using a high-precision Razer mouse. Overall, it's interesting research for bringing 2D windows into a 3D workspace using Wayland and the Oculus Rift. The code is hosted as the Motorcar Compositor. A video demonstration is on YouTube.
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3D Windowing System Developed Using Wayland, Oculus Rift

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  • Less productiviy.

    Visually appealing stuff is nice, but the best way to use a word processor or a spreadsheet is still the good old flat desktop with no bells and whistles.

    • the best way to use a word processor or a spreadsheet is still the good old flat desktop with no bells and whistles

      Unless you want to quickly view more documents than your desk has monitors. This could let you have 180 degrees of documents surrounding you. A securities day trader would climax over this.

      • Does the warranty on a Bloomberg terminal cover...'fluid damage'?
      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        The inherent problem here is that you really need more resolution than any of the current options are offering if you're going to do Real Work(tm) in 3d.

      • by sexconker (1179573) on Thursday June 19, 2014 @01:35PM (#47274125)

        the best way to use a word processor or a spreadsheet is still the good old flat desktop with no bells and whistles

        Unless you want to quickly view more documents than your desk has monitors. This could let you have 180 degrees of documents surrounding you. A securities day trader would climax over this.

        CTRL+TAB is faster than turning and focusing on a different monitor.
        Next challenger, please.

        • Faster is not always better for human-computer interfaces if faster misses cues that the user uses to relate one piece of information to another. Ctrl+Tab, despite being technically faster, fails to take advantage of the brain's hardwired spatial relationship processing. It also fails to fill the peripheral vision.
          • Peripheral vision for document reading? LOL!
            Spatial relationship processing? LOL! LOL!

            • by tepples (727027)
              It's faster for a machine to update a tiny 8-character display like the one on a Speak & Spell. But how is it faster for people to read from such a display?
        • CTRL+TAB is faster than turning and focusing on a different monitor.
          Next challenger, please.

          Not really. Yes, if you are turning 180 degrees and trying to find something, then maybe. If I am just cocking my head 30 degrees or so in any direction, my eyes and neck are considerably faster. Anything in the generally forward area is going to MUCH faster than alt/ctrl tab.

          Tabbing requires me to refocus my attention and try to understand the new things being displayed to me. Moving my gaze about does not require rediscovery.

      • by fuzzywig (208937)
        "A securities day trader would climax over this."

        Funny you should say that. [slashdot.org]

    • I don't think this is meant to be used in a real world environment. Not yet at least.

      It's a nice proof of concept.

      What I've really wanted was a virtual desktop where if i turned my head left, I got a palette or brushes or debugging inspector or something and looking forward gave me my main workspace. Looking up gives me mail or something.

      I don't know if it'll work in reality, but...

  • Now that we have the mechanism, the next step is policy [wikipedia.org]. I'd suggest rules like these: windows aren't spawned too close to another window, menus and window-modal dialogs float at x distance above the parent window, the cursor leaves a faint glow on windows, windows and the cursor leave a shadow x pixels thick on a desktop plane, a window can't be "rolled" (positioned such that the local X axis isn't parallel to the ground plane) more than momentarily, etc.
    • by Immerman (2627577)

      Indeed. In fact while I can see value in occasionally having the ability to arbitrarily orient windows in 3-space, I suspect having them default to the surface of a head-centered sphere at roughly arms length, oriented parallel to lines of latitude, would probably be the optimal solution. Movement would default to polar translation, with the window plane automatically rotating to remain remain tangent to the sphere, with the addition of being able to adjust depth as well. There's likely not many reasons

      • by nullchar (446050)

        Working from the inside of a [virtual] sphere would be pretty sweet. Once you start sphere hopping though, you'll need a metaverse to navigate between them.

  • by Dynedain (141758) <slashdot2@anth[ ... m ['ony' in gap]> on Thursday June 19, 2014 @12:24PM (#47273345) Homepage

    Everything cycles around.

    This tech existed 10-15 years ago. There were "popular" options for IRIX, and common in CAVE setups.

    I attended SIGGRAPH in 2000 or so on an exhibitor pass for a company that was producing a 3D window manager to do exactly this.

    • by nurb432 (527695) on Thursday June 19, 2014 @12:32PM (#47273437) Homepage Journal

      But in theory each time it cycles its less expensive, more advanced, and more available.

      • by i kan reed (749298) on Thursday June 19, 2014 @12:51PM (#47273649) Homepage Journal

        What's this? A lack of cynicism in a post?

        Crucify him! Crucify him!

      • by H0p313ss (811249)

        But in theory each time it cycles its less expensive, more advanced, and more available.

        And just as useless.

        • by nurb432 (527695)

          I will hold of judgement until i see the real thing. However, even if it is useless this cycle, every time something comes "back around" it gets more and more useful as it is refined. Plus all the collateral improvements in other related technology that happens is nothing to discount either.

  • Apple patent (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I think Apple was granted a patent on something similar to this recently (apple wins patents on 3d technology in desktop user interfaces).

    http://www.cnet.com/news/apple-wins-patents-on-3d-technology-in-desktop-user-interfaces/

    • by armanox (826486)

      And I think SGI might have prior art (I'd have to read Apple's patent to be sure).

  • by kharchenko (303729) on Thursday June 19, 2014 @12:44PM (#47273589)

    I was looking forward to using rift at work, but this looks like a guy is desperately trying to type in a "deploy parachute" command into the terminal while tumbling through the air at horrible speeds.

  • No, God damn it! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Overzeetop (214511) on Thursday June 19, 2014 @01:39PM (#47274161) Journal

    There's a reason I don't have 13 desks in my office, and a reason I have a three-wide monitor configuration. I want to see everything at once, not have to sift or "wander" through some 3D space to find what I'm looking for.

    • There's a reason I don't have 13 desks in my office, and a reason I have a three-wide monitor configuration. I want to see everything at once, not have to sift or "wander" through some 3D space to find what I'm looking for.

      That is the interesting thing about the Rift. You can have 3 monitors side by side by side in virtual space. You could surround yourself in an entire sphere of giant monitor. You do not have to walk down the hallway to another virtual office to access another virtual monitor. Just because someone else likes it that way, that does not mean it has to be that way for you.

  • I'm sure this technology has a lot of potential. Right now it drives me nuts just looking at it. The windows jitter too much and make me want to take my glasses off and rub my eyes 5 seconds into it.
    • by Tumalu (993708)

      Most of the jittering in the video is due to the head movements of the user and is not actually noticable to the person wearing the goggles. In fact, if the jittering weren't present it would probably be a very uncomfortable experience for most people.

      It's kind of like when you're looking at a physical monitor: As your head moves around slightly, the position of the monitor's projection onto your retina would also jitter, but it doesn't feel like the monitor is moving because your brain subconciously compen

  • It's UNIX!

    • by tepples (727027)
      When SGI does it, it's called fsn. But when Microsoft does the same thing, it's called Bob.
    • Did Jurrassic Park come out so long ago that nobody gets the reference anymore?

      I'm old! ;_;

  • I've always wanted a silly interface for virtual machines, where I can walk in a 3D game and there's computers on the table which are showing the picture of the actual virtual machines running on my computer.
  • so a 2d object is required to navigate a "3d" environment? Someone turned stupid.
  • But if I had a headset strapped on, I'd rather be in an immersive world like OpenCroquet/Cobalt/Qwak[1] (which support VNC for accessing "legacy" applications) than a white space surrounded by floating rectangles.

    [1] https://code.google.com/p/open... [google.com] https://virtual.wf/ [virtual.wf] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C... [wikipedia.org]

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