Compiz Fusion for Ubuntu... What is that? Get your 3d on! ~ Ask The Admin

Monday, January 14, 2008

Compiz Fusion for Ubuntu... What is that? Get your 3d on!

My man Karl, (Who is a new father by the way for those just coming out from under your rocks) asked me to elaborate on what exactly Compiz Fusion is, and why it is so damned cool.

First of all, I want to say that I am actually kind of a n00b when it comes to Compiz Fusion, and the whole 3D desktop thing. I only recently started using it with the latest version of Ubuntu (Gutsy Gibbon 7.10) where it is installed by default if your graphic card supports it.

Let me give you a little bit of a background on the project. It wasn't always called Compiz Fusion. No, according to Wikipedia:

Compiz Fusion is the result of a merge between the old Compiz community plugin set "Compiz Extras" and the parts of the Beryl project.

That is fine and good, but seriously, what is it? In short, it is a set of plugins and other elements independent of the window manager core which provide a bunch of cool animations, and 3D effects. One of the most well known effects is the 3D cube used when moving from one workspace to another.

According to the Compiz Fusion Project:

Compiz Fusion aims to provide an easy and fun-to-use windowed environment, allowing use of the graphics hardware to render each individual window and the entire screen, to provide some impressive effects, speed and usefulness.

When Karl originally asked about it in the comments section of his post, "Honey, We are a Ubuntu Household Now" he asked if Compiz Fusion was a way to "Windowize" Ubuntu. I wouldn't say that, however for you Vista Fanboys, you might find the 3D features of vista comparable to the 3D features of Compiz Fusion. In fact here is a video comparing Windows Vista and Ubuntu with Compiz Fusion (Actually it is with Beryl, but it is basically the same):

If you want to see a video of Ubuntu with actual Compiz fusion, I recorded a short video of my Ubuntu laptop here a while back.

So basically, Compiz Fusion is the Linux answer to the public demand for kick-ass graphics in their computing experiences. As you can see by the video(s), there are many cool little aesthetically pleasing visuals you can turn on or off to really add some pizazz to your normally mundane computer.

-El DI Pablo
You can keep up with El Di Pablo, author of and guest contributer on AskTheAdmin here. Still have questions or comments hit us up in the comments kids!