So, my laptop generally is upgraded. I don't want to take the time to fully re-install and Ubuntu has made that pretty smooth with their 6 month releases.
As of late I've noticed that in chrome on some web pages and expecially those with video I see strange corruption of vidoe flickering at the top. I've also near locked my box up with the new google maps. It didn't happen with firefox and it didn't happen on a couple of other machines I have.
The hardware is nothing outlandish, but that didn't stop me from looking for issues with the driver etc.
Well, I just detemermined that my issue was with compiz!
After I compared the configuration for compiz from another box by running:
gconftool -R /apps/compiz-1
that I had some different configurations including a whole slew of plugins installed.
Well, I restored the compiz setting to default and everything is working flawlessly now. Here is the command to restore compiz to vanilla:
gconftool --recursive-unset /apps/compiz-1
Then you should be able to just log out and back in. I chose to reboot since I had just applied a bunch of other things.
The load on the system has also reduced. Instead of X routinely taking double digits (12-14% and sometime nearly 100% of one core) in the CPU consumption column in top, it is now running around 6-8%.
I suspect that I likely had some conflicting or dueling composite managers or other plugins trampling on each other.
It's looking much better now.