Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 6th Jul 2007 11:15 UTC
Original OSNews Interviews After Axel Dorfler and Robert Szeleney, it is Kristian 'Vanders' van der Vliet's turn to answer the Five Questions. Vanders is one of the primary developers behind Syllable, the fork of (the now dead) AtheOS which saw the light of day July, 2002, because several AtheOS developers were concerned about the project's long-term goals. Syllable is free/open source software under the GPL license.
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RE: Syllable vs. Haiku
by Mike Pavone on Mon 9th Jul 2007 14:40 UTC in reply to "Syllable vs. Haiku"
Mike Pavone
Member since:
2006-06-26

How does Syllable compare to Haiku? Of course, the fact aside that Haiku is a remake of BeOS and Syllable isn't.

Well that's a lot of it right there. Haiku's philosophy (from my perspective anyway) is that BeOS was awesome so we should revive it in open source form. It currently maintains both source and binary compatibility with BeOS and sticks closely to the BeOS look and feel. There are a few advantages to this approach: they don't need to design an API (though internal design issues remain), existing BeOS applications will run on it without modification, and it has a built-in userbase of BeOS devotees.

Syllable has a somewhat different philosophy. It's trying to be the best desktop OS it can be. It takes a lot of inspiration from BeOS because BeOS did a lot of things right, but it's continually diverging away from BeOS and is not locked to any of BeOS's design decisions. This is a blessing and a curse. It gives the developers a lot of freedom to do things better than they've been done before in other operating systems, but it means it doesn't run existing BeOS applications. Lack of software is definately Syllable's biggest weakness at the moment, but it is steadily improving as Vanders mentions in the interview.

From a practical perspective, Syllable is significantly more stable and has better hardware support than Haiku currently does, or at least that has been my impression (I have not personally used Haiku). Haiku also has a rather nasty choice ahead of them. The C++ ABI (or at least the name mangling scheme) used by GCC changed between version 2 (which BeOS uses) and all later versions starting with 3. So they either need to stick with old creaky GCC 2, break binary compatibility with BeOS or produce their own custom version of GCC 4 (or 3 I suppose) that is ABI compatible with 2.

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