Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 17th Sep 2012 16:56 UTC, submitted by Andy McLaughlin
OSNews, Generic OSes "Visopsys (VISual OPerating SYStem) is an alternative operating system for PC-compatible computers, developed almost exclusively by one person, Andy McLaughlin, since its inception in 1997. Andy is a 30-something programmer from Canada, who, via Boston and San Jose ended up in London, UK, where he spends much of his spare time developing Visopsys. We had the great fortune to catch up with Andy via email and ask him questions about Visopsys, why he started the project in the first place, and where is it going in the future."
Thread beginning with comment 535490
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
RE[2]: The hardest part
by Alfman on Mon 17th Sep 2012 18:13 UTC in reply to "RE: The hardest part"
Member since:


Well, VESA was written ages ago and at that time they performed pretty well because graphics were not accelerated.

The reason I stated the "2012 PC driver standard" was because I envisioned the standard itself to be updated every few years to adopt to new hardware interfaces. Non-standard extensions could be implemented too, but the idea would be for new functionality to ultimately be incorporated into the standard at some point.

The great thing about this is that the standard could be both forward and backward compatible.

As an example. an OS might support the 2012 standard for webcams. Come 2020, when the standard is depreciated, a generic 2012->2020 wrapper layer could never the less assure that all 2020 operating systems could continue to run the 2012 web cam drivers. (I think I uncovered another disincentive for manufacturers to support this ;) )

Conversely, it'd be possible to have a generic 2020->2012 conversion driver to allow an older OS to run the newer hardware drivers.

Edit: Extending EOL is only a side benefit, but the intention would be to eliminate the duplication of work in OS drivers and make it much easier for all operating systems to support all hardware at least in their basic modes. More advanced features should still be possible even if they're not supported in all operating systems.

Edited 2012-09-17 18:19 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: The hardest part
by zima on Mon 17th Sep 2012 19:45 in reply to "RE[2]: The hardest part"
zima Member since:

Webcams are already more or less covered, by USB video class - don't really even need driver installation (sure, some manufacturer drivers are often/usually provided; but they tend to offer just superfluous trinkets beyond what the OS driver does, and they sometimes introduce some weird issues & performance degradation - that happened to me once, the default OS drivers clearly bogged down the system much less during webcam operation)

PS. Compatibility with USB video class is BTW something made mandatory by MS to get Vista & up logo certificate, on a product - which also brought to, say, Linux much better support of any random webcam than it used to be the case - so overall your "It's a pipe dream though. For it's part, MS would never participate" seems not entirely warranted...

Edited 2012-09-17 19:55 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: The hardest part
by ssokolow on Mon 17th Sep 2012 20:12 in reply to "RE[3]: The hardest part"
ssokolow Member since:

Yeah. Microsoft actually does have an incentive to standardize drivers.

Aside from malware, the biggest source of kernel instability these days is buggy drivers. So, the more Microsoft can get more hardware sharing less code that they write and test themselves, the more stable Windows becomes.

(And the easier it is to push the PR line that locking down the system, iOS-style, will kill rootkits and spyware without harming any legitimate users)

Edited 2012-09-17 20:24 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: The hardest part
by Alfman on Mon 17th Sep 2012 20:31 in reply to "RE[3]: The hardest part"
Alfman Member since:


I've purchased a few webcams, one this year. I have yet to own a webcam where windows drivers weren't necessary...but then it's a noname brand. If what you are saying is true and they are becoming standardised, that's a very welcome change!

Reply Parent Score: 2