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        bubbles - frying pan / soft drink simulation


        bubbles [-display host:display.screen] [-foreground color] [-background
        color] [-window] [-root] [-mono] [-install] [-visual visual]  [-simple]
        [-broken] [-3D] [-rise|-drop] [-trails] [-fps]


        Bubbles  sprays lots of little random bubbles all over the window which
        then grow until they reach their maximum size and go pop.  The inspira‐
        tion  for  this  was watching little globules of oil on the bottom of a
        frying pan and it also looks a little like bubbles in fizzy soft drink.
        The default mode uses fancy ray-traced bubbles but there is also a mode
        which just draws circles in case the default mode is too taxing on your


        Depending  on  how  your bubbles was compiled, it accepts the following
                Colour of circles if -simple mode is selected.
                Colour of window background.
        -window Draw on a newly-created window.  This is the default.
        -root   Draw on the root window.
        -mono   If on a color display, pretend we’re on a monochrome display.
                Install a private colormap for the window.
        -visual visual
                Specify which visual to use.  Legal values are the  name  of  a
                visual  class,  or the id number (decimal or hex) of a specific
        -delay microseconds
                How much of a delay should be introduced between steps  of  the
                animation.   Default  800, or about 800 microsecond.  Actually,
                this is the delay between each group of 15  new  bubbles  since
                such a delay between each step results in a very slow animation
                Same as -delay 0.
        -simple Don’t use the default fancy pixmap bubbles.  Just draw  circles
                instead.  This may give more bearable performance if your hard‐
                ware wasn’t made for this sort of thing.
        -broken Don’t hide bubbles when they pop.  This was a bug during devel‐
                opment but the results were actually quite attractive.
        -3D     Normally,  the simulation is done completely in two dimensions.
                When a bubble swallows up another bubble, the areas of each are
                added  to  get  the  area of the resulting bubble.  This option
                changes the algorithm to instead add volume (imagining each  to
                be a sphere in 3D space).  The whole thing looks more realistic
                but I find it attracts attention to the flickering of each bub‐
                ble as they are move and are redrawn.  Your mileage may vary.
        -quiet  Don’t print messages explaining why one or several command line
                options were ignored.  This is disabled by default.
        -rise | -drop
        -fps    Display the current frame rate and CPU load.


        If you find the pace of things too slow, remember that there is a delay
        even  though you specify no -delay option.  Try using -nodelay although
        beware of the effects of irritation of  other  users  if  you’re  on  a
        shared system as you bleed their CPU time away.
        Some  tools  to  assist  in creation of new bubbles are included in the
        source distribution.  These can either be  loaded  with  the  -file  or
        -directory  options  (if available) or they can be used in place of the
        distributed default bubble (bubble_default.c).  You might like to  copy
        these  scripts  to  a  permanent  location  and  use  them.   Read bub‐
        Rendered bubbles are not supported on  monochrome  displays.   I’m  not
        convinced  that small bubbles, even dithered properly are going to look
        like anything more than a jumble of random dots.


        There is a delay before something appears on the screen when using ren‐
        dered  bubbles.   The  XPM  library  seems  to take a long time to make
        pixmaps out of raw data.  This can be irritating on slower systems.
        The movement of the bubbles looks jerky if an incomplete set of bubbles
        is used.
        The  hide/display algorithm could do with some work to avoid flickering
        when -nodelay is set.


        DISPLAY to get the default host and display number.
                to get the name of a resource file that  overrides  the  global
                resources stored in the RESOURCE_MANAGER property.
        X(1), xscreensaver(1)
        This  work  is Copyright © 1995, 1996 by James Macnicol.  Permission to
        use, copy, modify, distribute, and sell this software and its  documen‐
        tation for any purpose is hereby granted without fee, provided that the
        above copyright notice appear in all copies and that  both  that  copy‐
        right notice and this permission notice appear in supporting documenta‐
        tion.  No representations are made about the suitability of this  soft‐
        ware  for  any  purpose.   It  is  provided  "as is" without express or
        implied warranty.


        James Macnicol <>