olpc-bootanim implements a custom, highly efficient boot animation. After loading the initial frame of the animation, all further frames are applied by only redrawing the pixels that change from one frame to another, through the application of several binary diffs.
Original implementation by C. Scott Ananian, rewritten to be more efficient by Mitch Bradley and Bobby Powers.
Current maintainer: User:DanielDrake
Questions and contributions should be sent to the devel mailing list.
Demand for olpc-bootanim features is growing, for example we'd like to show some kind of ticker if a fsck is going on in the background. Also, as of Fedora 15, it becomes difficult to apply a progress-based approach to the startup sequence because X is started very early by systemd.
plymouth has become a standard for boot animations and probably does not have the performance problems it once had.
olpc-bootanim should be reimplemented as a very simple plymouth backend, showing an animation that conveys that the system is loading but without conveying its actual progress through that sequence, with enough functionality to switch to an alternative animation if fsck is happening.