I know you’ve heard it before; a new computer operating system is coming to challenge the market share of Microsoft, something so new and revolutionary that Bill Gates is shaking in his corporate boots.
Funny thing about that, it may just have legs this time around.
For decades now, developers have come and gone riding high on the idea that they have something unique and competitive with which to test the supremacy of the Microsoft stranglehold on the world of PC operating systems, a dominance so entrenched and ubiquitous, that ol’ Bill hasn’t produced a bead of microsweat for over 30 years now.
In short, NO ONE has been able to successfully mount a challenge to the seemingly intractable Windows, despite repeated attempts that have all amounted to a bag of beans when it comes to toppling the overlord of OS.
Which makes the recent announcement by Google so interesting. Interesting because their latest venture is aiming to do precisely that; talk about St. George and the dragon!
Google Chrome OS, initially available for netbooks, but with the ultimate goal of production for desktop systems as well, is described as an open source OS that is the first of its kind to be designed from the ground up specifically for use on the internet.
This in itself is groundbreaking, as previous operating systems had been created from a pre-internet application standpoint, which as anyone online today can tell you, has radically limited their functionality in a world that is increasingly concentrated on the web.
Typical of Google, the new OS is open source, and will be offered for free.
While the concept of an OS maximized for web browsing isn’t a new one, the production of an OS designed as a web based application driven tool certainly is. There really hasn’t been anything quite like it before, but it may well usher in an entirely new realm for operating systems that takes into account just how much technology and our ability to adapt to it has changed in the years since even Windows XP was introduced in 2001.
The main idea behind Chrome OS is the reality that more and more functionality is being offered by web based applications, rendering the usefulness, especially of traditionally rigid operating systems, increasingly less important and not something tomorrow’s users are going to be prepared to shell out for.
Some of the main advantages for Google’s’ new OS will be its obvious economic savings, increased speed, particularly for tools such as drivers, vastly increased compatibility, built in portability with standards like Gmail, Google Docs and Picasa, and an incredible ability to integrate new applications that will make Windows look like a dinosaur by comparison.
Like any new web based venture, there’s no guarantee that Google OS will immediately take the net by storm. However, it’s safe to say that with this week’s announcement, the anticipation for this latest foray into the brave new world of online innovation from Google has successfully peaked massive interest in what could very well turn out to be their most popular and essential idea to date.
Written by PJ Ramphal ~ Guest Web Writer