Linked by Eugenia Loli on Mon 27th Mar 2006 19:30 UTC
Google Phil Sim, a professional with technology editor journalist background, has written three interesting blog posts recently, discussing the much-rumored Google OS (1, 2, 3). He speculates that all user's data will be stored online on Google's servers and so one's desktop and files can be retrieved exactly as left by any other PC station, anywhere in the world, by simply using his Gmail credentials. It's like having your OS on a usb key with you at all times, only, without the usb key...
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RE: Let's not discuss this
by Eugenia on Mon 27th Mar 2006 20:07 UTC in reply to "Let's not discuss this"
Member since:

It's an "online OS", not a "web OS" (the first is a real OS that uses data stored online, the second one is based on DHTML).

As for bandwidth, you must think first what Google has plenty of: storage and bandwidth. Also, remember the recent "Free WiFi in the Bay Area" initiative from Google. And also, we should not forget that such an OS won't be ready tomorrow, but in a few years from now. Maybe a normal 802.11g connection is enough to do most things well with such an OS, I don't know.

And then, don't forget Ajax. You don't have to wait for applications to launch anymore, but you will wait for data to come through. And I can tell you, Google's Gmail is faster searching for me all my email than when I search on my "Archived Inbox" on my Outlook Express which has 70,000 emails in it. So while loading big pictures on an image viewer will be slower loading the same picture from a local drive, other kind of data and application loading will be faster. It's a trade off I guess, and depends on what people are used to think as "fast" or "slow". And besides, I don't think that this OS will ONLY be online, but it might allow for offline storage, so the problem gets balanced out.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Let's not discuss this
by JCooper on Mon 27th Mar 2006 20:19 in reply to "RE: Let's not discuss this"
JCooper Member since:

You don't have to wait for applications to launch anymore, but you will wait for data to come through

That, to me, is the key point of any online OS; data availability and access. For such an OS to be successful it would have to offer improvements over "normal" desktop usage.

With GMail, Google Suggest and Google News they are offering an awful lot of information condensed into their perception of what you need right now; kind of like Nat F et al's Dashboard. An Online OS from Google would be able to offer the benefit of local applications (executed locally = faster), but with an online backup of your data (log into any Google OS and have the same "desktop" a la roaming profiles), and the benefits of searching against a data farm rather than a 7200rpm disk (executed remotely = faster).

Google may be using Ubuntu (see the Goobuntu discussion from before) as a base due to its pretty good hardware detection at every boot, and its basis on Debian (the free-est of linux cultures). Apart from support for Hardware, and decent apps to get people started, the rest can be web based, or at least use AJAX/DHTML and other effects to offer a client via the browser. Remember Google are also developing GTalk support in Gaim - a thick client - and also have interests in Firefox.

I personally see the future of such a project, assuming it is real, as exciting. It's more than Web 2.0, offering a very simple solution to a really complicated concept - an online, always accessible "workspace".

Reply Parent Score: 2

paul.michael.bauer Member since:

...don't forget Ajax. You don't have to wait for applications to launch anymore

Nope. Whether your app is a binary or bunches of JavaScripts in a browser, the app still needs to load and initialize.

In fact, the initializing of a comparable AJAX app (word processor) takes ages more time to load and resources to run than a native app.

I'm beginning to hate AJAX just because everyone is treating it like the solution to world hunger.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Let's not discuss this
by Tuishimi on Tue 28th Mar 2006 16:50 in reply to "RE[2]: Let's not discuss this"
Tuishimi Member since:

Reminds me of DECs XTerminals. They were simple computers that only ran X Windows and you ran all the applications from servers. Slow. And you are right, took apps a lot longer to load.

Reply Parent Score: 1