Expected to offer unified Ubuntu user experience for PCs, smartphones, tablets, and smart TVs
Canonical announced plans to develop Mir, an open source Linux display software which should offer a unified Ubuntu user experience for PCs, smartphones, tablets and smart TVs.
Mir is a graphics technology which will allow Canonical to implement user experience for Ubuntu across all devices. Most Linux distributions, including Canonical's, have relied on the X Window System, developed for Unix by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the 1980s.
But some developers, and clearly now also Canonical, believe it could be improved upon. Canonical's Oliver Ries wrote in a post to an Ubuntu developer mailing list, "None of the existing solutions would allow us to implement our vision without taking major compromises which would come at the cost of user experience and quality."
Project head Robert Ancell said, "In many ways, Mir will be completely transparent to the user. Applications that use toolkits will not need to be recompiled," Ancell added.
The company also plans to develop the next version of its unity desktop interface based on QML, the markup language developed by the creators of the Qt GUI toolkit and used by Canonical to develop its phone user interface (UI).
Smartphones with the Ubuntu 13.10 version that are expected to be shipped in October 2013 are planned to have Unity Next and Mir window management, according to the company.