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Here are some questions I have for you to ponder, answer or gloss over:
1. How small could we make a functional desktop with Microsoft Windows like features? Memory foot print and file size. It doesn't have to have every bell and whistle. It just needs to be intuitive and usable.
Amiga OS 4.... Filling about 60 megabyte after an complete installation.
2. What would be the real losses functionality wise if someone built an Office suite that only needed 10 Megs (This is completely Arbitrary) of disk space but inter operated file wise with Microsoft's Office.
The real loss, would be all the eye-candy, and the more special functions, like importing stuff, and of course the loss of all thos fonts wich are being installed by default.
3. Could we really accomplish much of what we do today on our UNIX desktops on a machine that only had a 486 and 32 megs of ram?
No! Because stuff like Instant messaging, video editing and music playback would be impossible.... It is only the speed of the owerall os-system, and the size of the program (in megabyte) that we can and need to change....
4. Are these desktops and applications huge because we have the room or it couldn't be done with smaller, better code?
It is on the brich of success... Look at Amiga-OS4.
The real answer would be, that proghrammers today are lazy.
They look at the space and the power that modern computers have, and they are just filling the code with eyecandy plus stupid and un-optimized code.... Shame on them :-(
5. Would we see any real world advantage by making the desktop, applications, toolkits more compact an efficient? Understand real world encompasses development time too. So if it took 3 months to code something tight that someone could write in their huge code in 2 weeks. Clearly we'd be looking at a disadvantage.
By building an tight code, u could offer an better system, and if people had the option of trying the system or application, they would be amazed by its speed and/or responce time.... Clearly it would pay off in the long run/term (whatever.....) ;-)
Please understand this: These are my opinions and reflections... And sorry for any mis-spelling....