The X windowing system is rapidly becoming the standard interface for the UNIX workstation world. There are continuing arguments over the particular flavor (MOTIF or Open Look), but both these systems are based on X. This brings a degree of interoperability previously unheard of to the workstation environment.
This is a very nice situation for the UNIX hackers, but are there opportunities in this for the embedded systems programmer? At first glance, it doesn't appear so. The standardization of X is achieved at the cost of significant overhead, due to the necessary generality of the code.
This has traditionally been the bane of embedded systems. Also, embedded systems often don't call for much of a user interface at all, much less a sophisticated CRT windowing system. Can the embedded systems programmer safely ignore the X wave as irrelevant to his speciality?
I maintain that if he does, he may be missing a good bet. A standardized graphics interface opens up some interesting possibilities for all phases of an embedded system development. I will attempt to describe a few of them in this paper.
ESC_1992_Vol2_Page229_Mittag – X Windowing for Embedded Systems.pdf