Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 14th Nov 2011 21:32 UTC, submitted by cristoper
Apple It's no secret OSNews has a bit of a thing for the BeOS. I can only speak for myself, obviously, but relatively speaking, BeOS was the best operating system ever made. The man who started all this was Jean-Louis Gassee, former executive at Apple, who founded Be, Inc. in 1991. In the second half of the '90s, Apple was looking for a replacement for its heavily outdated Mac OS, after several failed attempts at developing its own - it came down to Steve Jobs NeXT, or BeOS. Be didn't make it, and Gassee is happier for it.
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RE[2]: Software Souls
by Hexadecima on Mon 14th Nov 2011 23:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Software Souls"
Hexadecima
Member since:
2010-09-01

I'd like to claim I was snarking, but the unabashed love letter that Thom wrote really caught me off guard.

"Up until this very day, it's the only piece of software that had a soul, an identity that went above and beyond colour schemes, themes, and icons. Even after ten years, I still can't explain or put into words the feeling BeOS gave me. Even today, when I see a screenshot or somebody mentions it, my heart makes a little jump."

Did... did BeOS have Thom's child or something? Wikipedia doesn't back up the assertion that it had a "soul". Classic Mac, Amiga, and NeXT enthusiasts have been saying basically the same things about their own computers since the late 80s, and it's just bizarrely arrogant to see someone say BeOS was the "only" piece of software that deserves this title.

So, in short, the logic goes like this: BeOS users appear to be crazy, therefore BeOS must attract crazy people, therefore, as a non-crazy person, I wish to distance myself from it. I've used it before, too—I even subscribe to the Haiku RSS feed. It just struck me as a curious little oddity of the past, like QNX or the Atari ST (both brands I don't have particular fondness for.) Now I'm starting to think that may have been too generous.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Software Souls
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 14th Nov 2011 23:49 in reply to "RE[2]: Software Souls"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

You grasp the concept of "opinion", yes?

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Software Souls
by Hexadecima on Mon 14th Nov 2011 23:59 in reply to "RE[3]: Software Souls"
Hexadecima Member since:
2010-09-01

Of course I do! But opinions need to be rationalized. The emotional response in the article is very strong, and it looks very weird without an explanation nearby. The creepy kind of weird.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Software Souls
by MOS6510 on Tue 15th Nov 2011 05:59 in reply to "RE[3]: Software Souls"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

It's obviously the wrong opinion. Amiga's and their AmigaOS had/have soul.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[3]: Software Souls
by Morgan on Tue 15th Nov 2011 00:04 in reply to "RE[2]: Software Souls"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Well I don't want to speak for Thom, but I'd assume he was talking about his own experiences with it and the associated emotions he would have, not trying to state as a fact that it was possessed of a soul.

Anyway, yeah the altOS world is full of fanboys and girls. Otherwise what would be the point of a site like this? Take me for example: I grew up with computers in the pre-Windows world. My first computer was a TI 99/4a at five years old, and I've since had an Atari 400, Apple //c, Amiga 1000, TRS-80 CoCo2 and Commodore VIC-20 all before using DOS for the first time. Yet my favorite OSes in descending order are BeOS, QNX, OS X, Classic MacOS, GNU/Linux, NeXTSTEP, OS/2 and Windows 7. None of those I used before 1996 with the exception of Classic MacOS, and they are all vastly dissimilar.

So am I crazy because I have enjoyed using each of those OSes and countless others too? I'd say I am curious, geeky and driven, but hardly crazy.

Regarding Thom, I'd be more concerned about his obsession with rainbow farting unicorns than with any particular OS, especially considering he writes about OSes for a living.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: Software Souls
by zima on Sat 19th Nov 2011 22:14 in reply to "RE[3]: Software Souls"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

"Had"?... You... got rid of... Amiga 1000?! o_O
(I seem to recall you deciding, understandably of course, to ignore lemur2 some time ago; I might just do something similar)

;p

But yeah, there was something warm & fuzzy (also!) about BeOS (and maybe it's better to not recheck it, not run it today; considering how nostalgia, memories, past & rose-coloured glasses work)
Enough of that "warm & fuzzy" for BeOS to show up, for example, in at least one indy film from few years back; very visibly running on the PC used by main characters (I think it was even mentioned here, or on the blog of Eugenia; alas, I can't quickly find it) - and not too many niche OS manage such exposure among film makers (even indy ones), I think.

PS. BTW & overall, using niche operating systems (maybe just with the size of some core script-dictated elements - usually, some short text - inflated in size way beyond defaults) in films would seem to me as a much more bearable option than "film UIs", when there's a need for something "fancy" and, perhaps, a desire to avoid free product placement and/or legal complications.
Oh well, maybe in some better universe...

Edited 2011-11-19 22:25 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Software Souls
by SonicMetalMan on Tue 15th Nov 2011 00:44 in reply to "RE[2]: Software Souls"
SonicMetalMan Member since:
2009-05-25

I want Haiku to succeed if for no other reason that it gives users another lightweight OS option that really does not exist at the moment. OS's like Be, Haiku, and AROS drive innovation in ways that Redmond and Cuppertino just do not "get it" anymore. Cutting edge hardware removes the need for coders to work efficiently and give rise to enormous bloat of Win7 and OS X.

My 2004 vintage Evo still runs XP just fine but there is no upgrade path using Microsoft products that fit this old laptop. So, it now sports Xubuntu and perks along briskly. In truth I would be just as happy running any of the OS's I previously mentioned, I have used them all before and would continue to do so if they do the job. I do not need all the effing eye-candy that so many current TPM's feel compelled to spec as required features.

And yes I do have a fondness for all the OS's mentioned and a few more as well, like IRIX and AIX. I admire them for the work that they allowed me to do and isn't that what it's all about?

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[3]: Software Souls
by jack_perry on Tue 15th Nov 2011 16:24 in reply to "RE[2]: Software Souls"
jack_perry Member since:
2005-07-06

"Up until this very day, it's the only piece of software that had a soul, an identity that went above and beyond colour schemes, themes, and icons. Even after ten years, I still can't explain or put into words the feeling BeOS gave me. Even today, when I see a screenshot or somebody mentions it, my heart makes a little jump."

Did... did BeOS have Thom's child or something? Wikipedia doesn't back up the assertion that it had a "soul". Classic Mac, Amiga, and NeXT enthusiasts have been saying basically the same things about their own computers since the late 80s, and it's just bizarrely arrogant to see someone say BeOS was the "only" piece of software that deserves this title.


Hey, another Amiga user! Finally, someone who understands that Be fanboys are morons! (Think twice about that thumbs-down button, buddy -- that's just my opinion.)

Have you been reading OSNews long? After a while, you'll get used to it, roll your eyes, and say, "Yeah, that's just Thom." & maybe one day you'll bestir yourself to do something about it & contribute something. Most of us just whine about, though. :-P

Edited 2011-11-15 16:24 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Software Souls
by Hexadecima on Wed 16th Nov 2011 00:26 in reply to "RE[3]: Software Souls"
Hexadecima Member since:
2010-09-01

I have, I've just generally avoided Be-related posts because I didn't understand the appeal. Serves me right for giving the topic a chance, I guess. It's just so painful to see a sub-group of the obscure OS fandom not learn from their forerunners. Can't Be people see the Amiga users and realise how crazy they must sound to everyone else? ;)

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Software Souls
by biffuz on Tue 15th Nov 2011 22:38 in reply to "RE[2]: Software Souls"
biffuz Member since:
2006-03-27

BeOS users appear to be crazy, therefore BeOS must attract crazy people, therefore, as a non-crazy person, I wish to distance myself from it.


... so said the Amiga 4000 user in 2011. C'mon, you're not less crazy than 90% of the readers here.

Posted from my BeOS R5-powered Dell Latitude C610. Proud to be crazy.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Software Souls
by Hexadecima on Wed 16th Nov 2011 00:23 in reply to "RE[3]: Software Souls"
Hexadecima Member since:
2010-09-01

Bitter sarcasm, I assure you!

My A4000 electrocuted itself years ago.

...now I'm down to 3 A2000s and an A1000.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Software Souls
by kovacm on Wed 16th Nov 2011 16:25 in reply to "RE[2]: Software Souls"
kovacm Member since:
2010-12-16

Classic Mac, Amiga, and NeXT enthusiasts have been saying basically the same things about their own computers since the late 80s, and it's just bizarrely arrogant to see someone say BeOS was the "only" piece of software that deserves this title.

hay, do not be so hard on thom! ;)

I guess that BeOS is OS of his youth ;) (as GEM was mine ;) )

Reply Parent Score: 1