[rescue] Sun Kit Needed for EE Student Here

Charles Shannon Hendrix shannon at widomaker.com
Fri May 5 23:45:16 CDT 2006

Fri, 05 May 2006 @ 08:02 -0700, Don Y said:

> So, it knows about each application's resources and rewrites them?


X does font rendering. However, in the past its font support was so crappy,
that application libraries did their own font rendering and just used X to
draw it. Gnome in particular still does too much work in Gnome, including
redundant copies of font data.

This was slow and ugly.

Modern X servers use XRender and hardware acceleration to draw fonts, and has
new features like anti-aliasing, TrueType support, and subpixel rendering.
The X servers do a lot more of the work (all of it now?) for displaying high
quality fonts, and it benefits even old applications.

However, for some reason, font rendering for X apps just does not look as good
unless I have KDE running.

I have tried all manner of font configuration in X and my personal font config
files, and it just doesn't look as good. I might just be missing something,
but from comments I've read, I'm not the only one.

As far as widgets go, many applications now draw widgets independently
of KDE and Gnome if they are running alone.  However, if KDE or Gnome is
loaded, they can make use of "engines" (I think that's what they are
called) which do a better job of drawing.

Applications can also dynamically load things like Qt and GTK and use them
instead of their own widgets, if they have an abstraction layer for drawing
the GUI. I'm fairly certain that is how Firefox works, for example. If
it doesn't see KDE or Gnome when it starts up, it draws its own widgets.
Otherwise it can load code from the environment and use that.

Some applications just look butt ugly without KDE or Gnome running. Again,
if there is a way to make them use better drawing engines without the full
environment, I haven't figured out how.

> Or, does it only provide this ability to applications that have
> been *modified* to "comply" with it?

If the application talks to X to do the work, like for fonts, then it
benefits from the enhancements without modification.

For widgets, it has to have support, or load it dynamically.

shannon "AT" widomaker.com -- ["Secrecy is the beginning of tyranny." --

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