Compiz Comes Together
Compiz — the compositing window manager responsible for more than a few dropped-jaws — has a long history of ins and outs, not the least of which includes more forks than at a garden club lunch. It seems, however, that things always come back together, and such was the case on Tuesday, as the Compiz community announced the imminent re-merger of several well known forks.
According to the newly-minted Compiz Council, the future of Compiz is in mergers and acquisitions: Mergers with its forks, and acquisition of their code. The first to be announced involves the C++-based Compiz++ and the remote-desktop-oriented Nomad branch, which the project plans to merge in by early Fall 2009. Compiz++ is planned to merge first as Compiz 0.9.0, with a 0.9.2 release to follow shortly thereafter as a "cleanup" measure. Following Compiz 0.9.2, the project will then review the Nomad code: if it is considered ready to merge, it will merge into Compiz 0.9.4, with its own 0.9.6 cleanup release. If it is found to not be ready, the project will focus on option handling for Compiz 0.9.4, with the Nomad merger remaining on hold as long as necessary.
As though the merger of two forks back into the mothercode wasn't achievement enough, the project will also be merging in Compiz Fusion, the configuration and plugin system formed in early 2007 by the merger of Beryl — an earlier Compiz fork — back into the main Compiz community. The news came after the Compiz Council, composed of five longstanding Compiz community members, issued an official statement announcing its formation and setting out a roadmap for future development — with the code described as "expected to be quite volatile."
The council also announced that the project would be parting ways with freedesktop.org, an interoperability-focused organization which provides hosting for a number of similar projects, including the X.Org Server, GStreamer multimedia framework, and the GTK-Qt engine. Details of the move, and of the Compiz-Fusion merger, are said to be still under development, and should be forthcoming in the near future.
Justin Ryan is a Contributing Editor for Linux Journal.