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July 29, 1990

IEEE FINDS A SOLUTION TO END UNIX GRAPHICAL INTERFACE WARS

By CBR Staff Writer

There are encouraging signs that the graphical user interface wars between the belligerant Unix camps could soon be at an end thanks to a strategic decision reached by the Institute of Electrical & Electronic Engineers’ P1201.1 working group on windowing, meeting the other day in San Jose, California. The group – led by Sunil Metha of Unisys Corp – has chosen Denver, Colorado-based X-Ray Vector Tango Inc’s XVT toolkit to form the basis of an application programming interface for Unix graphical user interfaces that will support both Open Look and Motif from the rival Unix organisations. The group’s proposal has to go to a full ballot of IEEE members, and it is hoped that the recommendation will be adopted within a year. The move could now pave the way for X/Open to make a firm decision on its user interface strategy – the Unix applications standards body has been sitting on the fence for more than a year now, but recent indications have suggested the group has been awaiting just such a decision from the IEEE before showing its hand.

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