Linked by Hadrien Grasland on Tue 11th Jan 2011 13:40 UTC
Graphics, User Interfaces Nowadays smartphones, tablets and desktop/laptop computers are all siblings. They use the same UI paradigms and follow the same idea of a programmable and flexible machine that's available to everyone. Only their hardware feature set and form factor differentiate them from each other. In this context, does it still make sense to consider them as separate devices as far as software development is concerned? Wouldn't it be a much better idea to consider them as multiple variations of the same concept, and release a unified software platform which spreads across all of them? This article aims at describing what has been done in this area already, and what's left to do.
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RE[2]: umm
by sorpigal on Tue 11th Jan 2011 14:23 UTC in reply to "RE: umm"
sorpigal
Member since:
2005-11-02

Would you call Linux (alone) a major actor of the personal computer market, comparable in size to Windows, iOS, Android, or even Mac OS X, without a smile ?

Yes. Very yes. What is a smart phone if not a personal computer? If by "Linux" as distinct from "Android" you mean the traditional userland stack on top of Linux, then the answer is still yes.

Would you say that usual Linux distros adapt themselves well to tablet or smartphone use,

The "usual distro" of OS X isn't used on the iPhone, either, nor is the "usual" Windows stack. I'm not talking about "usual" desktop UIs, and neither are you, I'm talking about mobile UIs. Have you been following the UI work being done for Meego? Have you been following recent KDE UI work?

that they do anything in the realm of cross-device portability?

I know what you mean is "Cross-device runtime UI portability", but you don't say it. If you want portability Linux is certainly worth mentioning since it is (arguably) the king of portability. If you mean "UI portability," interfaces that dynamically adapt to the current screen and input method, then even there some good work has lately been done.

Linux has its place in this article, but in its Android incarnation only in my opinion. And I mentioned it. The rest of the Linux world remains a minor actor, and most distros are desktop/laptop-only.

Android certainly deserves mention, but you leave it as an afterthought following a thick paragraph about Windows, of all things, which is all rumor and maybes. And, a quibble: All Microsoft OSes do share a common kernel, easily as much as iOS and OS X do. Windows deserves far less mention here than does Meego, much less Android.

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