Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ubuntu 10.10 Multi-touch Video

As many are aware, we released our maverick Maverick a few days ago. Part of what comes with Ubuntu 10.10 is the new uTouch stack. We been having lots of really great talks in the public IRC channel (#ubuntu-touch, and on the general multi-touch mail list (subscription info at the bottom of that page). More and more folks are trying it out, experimenting, and contributing.

As part of the "Maverick Movies" initiative, fellow employees Gerry Carr, John Lea, and Neil Patel worked on getting this little gem produced (embedded to the left; here's the full-sized version). Gerry has written an excellent blog post about it here.

This video shows off most of the touch capabilities that were integrated into Unity for Maverick. Neil Patel (fellow Big Lebowski fan) and John Lea will be working very closely together during Natty to expand this feature set to take more advantage of the gesture capabilities of uTouch. Simlarly, Henrik Rydberg will be working with them to enhance the uTouch gesture engine. And all of us will be working on the newest addition to the uTouch family that Mark mentioned in his blog post: a gesture language. More on that later :-)

For right now, let's check out this video! For the impatient, the target list of gestures in Unity is available in a gestures guidelines document, lovingly put together by John Lea and Mark. As one might expect, there's a lot there. If you skip to section 5, you'll be able to get a nice visual overview of most of the gestures with some descriptive text. For those who chose to watch the video first, here's what you saw:
  • single taps (i.e., a touch "mouse click")
  • a window grab (three-finger touch, let one up)
  • moving the window (three-finger touch, let one up, move it around)
  • drag up to maximize
  • drag up and right (or left) to fill the right (or left) half of the screen
  • un-maximize (use the drag gesture on the maximized window)
  • bring up the dash (4-tap)
  • bring up all windows for one app (three-pinch)
  • bring up all windows (three-pinch again)
Have fun playing with Unity on your touch devices! There's lots more to come...


roddie said...

What's the hardware?

Duncan McGreggor said...

Hey roddie,

For this video, Gerry Carr used a Dell Latitude XT2, flipped around in the tablet format.

Anonymous said...

I'm using the same hardware, but 11.04 is constantly freezing on me. Have you faced the same?

Duncan McGreggor said...


I personally have not. However, I have seen some recent bug reports and discussions on the #ubuntu-touch IRC channel; Chase Douglas is very actively and assiduously following up with folks who are experiencing difficulties with their touch hardware in Natty (11.04). I'd recommend posting a bug ( or chatting on the channel.