Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 10th Feb 2009 18:31 UTC
BeOS & Derivatives Back when it was becoming clear that the time of the BeOS had come and gone, enthusiasts immediately set up the OpenBeOS project, an attempt to recreate the Be operating system from scratch, using a MIT-like license. The project faced difficult odds, and numerous times progress seemed quite slow. Still, persistence pays off, and the first alpha release is drawing ever closer. We decided to take a look at where Haiku currently stands.
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RE: But why?
by NexusCrawler on Wed 11th Feb 2009 13:19 UTC in reply to "But why?"
NexusCrawler
Member since:
2009-02-11

As very well highlighted by the article, BeOS was well ahead of its time back in its days.

And today... Well, there is still a lot of splendid ideas and design choices in BeOS/now Haiku that makes Haiku competitive towards other OSes.

For instance, give me an OS that combines at least these features:
* less than 10-sec boot time
* no lagging, no latency in user interactions
* small hardware requirements, small footprint on CPU and RAM usage, very light HDD usage (both OS and other software are very small)
* easy to use and efficient GUI yet still appealing
* never crashes, eventually part of the OS crashes but you just need to restart this part, not the whole OS -- same for device drivers installation, just restart some part of the OS, do not reboot the whole computer
* easiest software distribution model (in my opinion): no enforced package manager, no unmaintanable registry base, just unzip where you want and it works
* virtual desktops with independent resolutions
* real shell (bash) with all the power of UNIX (including easy scripting)
* powerful and efficient file-system
* well documented and well defined stable API

Plus some other features which are quite unique to BeOS/Haiku, as far as I know, for instance the "translators". This is a bit like codecs but for any type of files and which works with any application. Just install the "MP3" translator and voilĂ  every application just knows how to play and record MP3 files. Now just install the "PNG" translator and you can display and record any graphics in PNG format with any graphic application. And so on with any data format. Do you see the beauty of this?

But I agree that it's somewhat difficult to imagine what is so extraordinary here if you never tried BeOS/Haiku before. :-)

However like you and others, I'm not sure that Haiku will succeed because of the smaller software base. But this may not be an issue... People just "need" to port all of the free open source software that made Linux famous and the software base should be there. So why not? :-P It's a bit like an ARM port of Ubuntu. If the software base for ARM Ubuntu is fine, then it should be for any OS thanks to the open source model. :-)

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