X server and the 3D desktop on Linux:: an overview
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Read an excellent overview of the linux / unix x server and 3d graphic support.

This is pretty in depth, and covers a lot of issues you may not even be aware of.

:: Quote ::
The concept of a 3D desktop is not that strange. We have had a 3D desktop ever since we moved away from tiled windows in Windows 1.0 to overlapping ones - once Z order was introduced the desktop became a non-perspective 3D space. 3D concepts are all over the desktop, look at menus and pop-ups. A big reason for implementing composite was to provide drop shadows, which are obviously a 2D representation of a 3D space. Even controls like buttons are made to look 3D via 2D simulation.

Anyway, it's got a lot of material, talks about the various x server components, the ideas behind 3d rendering of desktops, like the newer Windows and OS X stuff is doing, and how to start taking advantage of the 3D rendering strengths of most new video cards.

We'll see how it turns out. Personally, I think this whole 3d desktop thing is just sort of annoying when it comes to the eye candy part, but the author points out that there is much more going on than eye candy when it comes to 3D desktops in terms of window painting speeds etc.
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