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As Ubuntu seems to be making strategic preparations for a tablet-like experience, I wondered what priority smooth scrolling is for the team.

A use case: I read PDFs on a netbook on a daily basis. Even with fullscreen, I have to scroll about every 10-15 seconds. Without smooth scroll, I have to spend a half second or so to "find" my place. Even though it seems like a small inconvenience, the increments add up quite fast. As a result, I look enviously at owners of a certain well-known tablet far too often.

Related bug: https://bugs.launchpad.net/gtk/+bug/868510

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I really wonder about the future of this too. virtually any software supports this except for linux. the new ayatana scrollbar in unity in ubuntu 11.10 alpha 3 is said to support a smoothscroll feature when clicking on the arrows of the thumb, but still no smoothscroll for normal mousewheel/touchpad scrolling... which means that it is not so dependent on the GNOME team's decisions, canonical could probably make smoothscroll for ubuntu themselves if they wanted. but how much longer do we have to wait? –  user23299 Aug 14 '11 at 22:07
    
Added a bug on launchpad, as I too am wondering whether this will ever happen. My guess is they just didn't think about it yet ;) –  Ingo Oct 5 '11 at 16:32
    
According to Phoronix, smooth scrolling has finally arrived in X.Org 1.12. Maybe it's time to do something about it now ? –  hellpe Mar 8 '12 at 21:53

4 Answers 4

up vote 9 down vote accepted

According to http://brainstorm.ubuntu.com/idea/4849/, it is a pretty "hot" idea, and possibly on the roadmap, but it really depends on the upstream GTK developers, as in whether they will implement/accept (a) patch(es) for the feature.

According to a mailing list I read, a patch was submitted (since 2003!!!) but as far as I can tell, not only was there no reply, but there was also no progress :)! I would have to look through GNOME's/GTK+'s bugzilla, but I'm not so sure if this is in progress as yet.

Hopefully though it will be implemented in the course of developing GTK+3.x, since the Linux Desktop in general is moving in this direction (tablets/touch/smooth responses etc).

Update:

This has landed in 12.04 (GNOME/GTK 3.4), but you may only be able to use it with certain devices (afaik), such as trackpads.

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According to http://brainstorm.ubuntu.com/idea/4849/, it is a pretty "hot" idea, and possibly on the roadmap, but it really depends on the upstream GTK developers, as in whether they will implement/accept (a) patch(es) for the feature.

According to a mailing list I read, a patch was submitted (since 2003!!!) but as far as I can tell, not only was there no reply, but there was also no progress :)! I would have to >look through GNOME's/GTK+'s bugzilla, but I'm not so sure if this is in progress as yet.

Yes, gtk+ feature introduction is kinda somnambulic. If nobody pushes for changes from inside, usually nothing happens...

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This should have been a comment to the previous answer, not an answer on its own. –  chtfn Apr 5 '12 at 3:31

In June this year, Phoronix reported that smooth scrolling is an X.org target for version 1.12, due in early 2012. A shame then, that Ubuntu will be moving away from x.org and onto Wayland shortly after that target (I think Wayland is being projected for late 2012, isn't it? Might be wrong there).

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Try Ubuntu 12.04, smooth scrolling already works in some applications' list-boxes.

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