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Chrome OS Introduces Aura Window Manager 162

Posted by Soulskill
from the they've-innovated-through-to-the-other-side dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Don't look now, but Google has officially revealed their intentions to go after Windows and OS X. Chrome OS 19 has arrived for Samsung Series 5 and Acer AC700 Chromebooks running the developer channel, and the changes it brings may shock you. The new Aura window manager has landed, bringing with it a number of features that you'd expect from a traditional OS. For starters, there’s the Shelf along the bottom of the screen. It’s set to hide when you’ve got a browser window maximized by default, but you can choose to have it always on top or auto-hide, too, just like the Windows taskbar or OS X dock."
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Chrome OS Introduces Aura Window Manager

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @08:22PM (#39638887)

    It surprises me they are still working on Chrome OS. Its probably not too bad, but I don't exactly see a huge demand for it, especially since they also have android which would work nearly as well for what they want to do with Chrome OS.

    I kinda wish they pushed for Wave harder. That looked like something I would use.

    • by jmorris42 (1458) * <jmorris@beauTOKYO.org minus city> on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @08:47PM (#39639081)

      Yea, worst of all worlds. It only runs web apps but few are so totally 100% always on that they are going to be comfortable with that. So now they add a desktop but it has fewer apps than any other possible system and will for a while unless they dump a ton of cash into it. Even Linux (as in a typical Linux/GNU/X distribution) has tons more apps.

      The problem is the whole net centrism of Chrome OS. By definition it can't offer anything that any other platform that can run Chrome the browser can't also run. So that means anything developed for Chrome OS also runs everywhere Chrome the browser runs. Which means Chrome the OS, by definition, runs a pure subset of what every other Chrome the browser platform can run. Every other platform gets 100% of Chrome OS's app pool + it's own. And since they were stupid enough to put Intel chips in the machines they don't even get a power/battery life advantage. In fact an ARM based netbook/laptop running Linux + Chromium (Don't think Chrome itself is available on Linux/ARM but the unofficial Chromium almost certainly is.) probably would be a better deal

      • by Anthony Mouse (1927662) on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @09:23PM (#39639381)

        The problem is the whole net centrism of Chrome OS. By definition it can't offer anything that any other platform that can run Chrome the browser can't also run. So that means anything developed for Chrome OS also runs everywhere Chrome the browser runs. Which means Chrome the OS, by definition, runs a pure subset of what every other Chrome the browser platform can run. Every other platform gets 100% of Chrome OS's app pool + it's own.

        You're ignoring how that can be a significant advantage. The alternative is what you want when you're Microsoft: You want your platform to run everything everyone else's can and then a lot more, because the more stuff runs on your platform and not others, the less people are able to switch. But that only works when you're already in the dominant market position -- adding some cool API or whatever is close to useless if the only way you can use it is if all your customers have ChromeOS and nobody does.

        Now look at it from the other side: Suppose you make it so Chrome on Windows and OS X does everything Chrome OS can do. OK, now you convince some companies that it would be a good idea to write their custom business application against Chrome -- that way it will run on all major platforms, and for the few users who need only that application, you can buy them a Chrome OS computer which is cheaper and practically immune to viruses. Which provides the thin end of the wedge: Get people using Chrome OS in a limited capacity and the next custom business application that comes around for a refresh gets "works on our existing Chrome OS machines" as a requirement. Five or ten years later, everything businesses do works on Chrome OS and they start wondering what sense it makes paying money for Windows licenses.

      • by ewanm89 (1052822)
        So , Chrome beta for Android doesn't count a Chrome on Linux on ARM?
      • by c0lo (1497653)

        Which means Chrome the OS, by definition, runs a pure subset of what every other Chrome the browser platform can run.

        /. causes the Android browser (is it not Chrome as well?) to crash on limited and cheap Android tablets. I suspect that Chrome OS could hold it better.

        This is not to disagree with you, but to point there could be a niche for Chrome OS - low capability(=>very low price) mobile devices.

        If I'm right in my assumption, we may see a boost in "HTML5 gaming" - I'm sure Google would love it, be it only to crack the garden-wall of the Apple (as in: being HTML5, the game plays well on iPad - and delivers the Googl

        • /. causes the Android browser (is it not Chrome as well?) to crash on limited and cheap Android tablets.

          I've logged in and posted to /. on my ICS phone, and read /. many many times on my gingerbread phone. I believe what you meant to say is that things crash on cheap Android tablets (or cheap anything else).

      • by hairyfeet (841228)

        And does anyone else smell the delicious waft of moist and chewy irony here? MSFT gets ready to shove out a desktop that is more like a tablet/smartphone hybrid so Google puts out something that at first glance....looks a hell of a lot like Windows 7, only replacing the start orb with the ...well chrome orb but it is a different KIND of orb at least.

        Now all we need if for google to buy ReactOS and bitchslap MSFT silly by making a Windows desktop that runs better than what they are gonna be pushing in oct. T

        • by unixisc (2429386)

          Google either buying or forking ReactOS would be a great idea - make Windows 7 the target spec on which to base it, build into it everything that it needs, borrowing generously from Chrome OS and only substituting IE9 w/ Chrome, so that there are no issues, and run w/ it. Offer different Window Managers at installation - be it XP, 7, 2k, 98, ME, Vista, whatever.... Have different editions, just like Windows does, and offer various options @ various price points, ranging from $20 all the way up to $200, de

          • Google either buying or forking ReactOS would be a great idea...

            Dumb ideas both. ReactOS as a broad based open source project is not for sale, just forget that. And why fork it, just to annoy the community? Do you somehow imagine that only Google can develop good code suited to purpose, and has a monopoly on development talent? I can assure you: Google as a company has nothing special in the development department. They are just a bunch of random schmucks like you and me, who happened to hit the sweet spot on Google's rather random interview process.

            Sure, Google could h

            • by unixisc (2429386)

              I suggested forking the project for a bunch of reasons, namely

              • That project has itself been going on for a while, and hasn't progressed much. That sort of a snail's pace would be unusable by Google, which is why it's better that they have their own project that they completely control. Given the speed @ which ReactOS is developing, likelyhood is that a Google version of it would be the default OS that exists
              • Such an OS would need regression testing, bug fixes and a maintenance team behind it - something t
              • by hairyfeet (841228)

                And I know who would be PERFECT to partner with Google on it...Valve. Can you imagine the delicious taste of win for Google if they partnered with Valve and had a Steam box that played all of Steam's games with a full blown Google web app experience in it? Videos through YouTube, Google docs, search, AND it would give Google the way into social media that they want by tying G+ into Steam chat so you could take it to the next level.

                I've been running Windows PCs since Win 3.x but if Google and Valve were to

            • They are just a bunch of random schmucks like you and me, who happened to hit the sweet spot on Google's rather random interview process.

              What's up? Would Google not give you a job?

              Perhaps they weren't impressed by the failure of Tux2 and Tux3.

        • by crutchy (1949900)
          you can get a toshiba laptop with win7 in australia for under $500 (http://dicksmith.com.au/product/XC7989/toshiba-satellite-c665d-056-notebook) and that's from a major retailer without much effort.

          chrome OS not going to make a dent here with the kind of deals you mentioned.
          • by hairyfeet (841228)

            Hell I paid $350 USD for my netbook before the flood and it comes with a dual core AMD APU that curb stomps what they are offering in the $500 ChromeBooks and that is including the cost of me upgrading to 8Gb of RAM and buying a carrying case!

            How they can't smell the fail i just don't know, as here in the USA I have seen many dual core laptops for $279 after MIR and even quad cores for $400, and they expect people to pay $500+ USD for an Atom dual with Intel graphics? Really? Hell I can get the exact. same.

      • by FunkDup (995643)

        Yea, worst of all worlds. It only runs web apps

        Yeh but there are advantages to dumb terminals, like lower power requirements, more hardware architecture options and centralising resources. Think of how overpowered most office machines are already, getting all those spare cycles into a central location could be very fruitful (both in cost and power). If you've ever been responsible for more than 5 machines you'll appreciate centralised management systems. Think Active Directory with a whole lot less complexity exposed to Murphy and his team of gremlins.

      • by DrXym (126579)

        Yea, worst of all worlds. It only runs web apps but few are so totally 100% always on that they are going to be comfortable with that. So now they add a desktop but it has fewer apps than any other possible system and will for a while unless they dump a ton of cash into it. Even Linux (as in a typical Linux/GNU/X distribution) has tons more apps.

        To be fair they're not just web apps. You can compile C/C++ apps using PNaCL and run them natively in a sandbox. It would have been better of course if Google had used LLVM instead of architecture specific assembler.

        I do think Chrome OS is a waste of time. It's main claim is it boots fast into a browser. Other than that it's pretty useless. Google already have a perfectly functional tablet / netbook OS called Android. They should shitcan Chrome OS and move some of the work they've done on optimizing batte

      • by Svartalf (2997)

        Not all of the Chromebooks use Intel. Some use Qualcomm chips. There's a hint that your info is not 100% accurate. ;-D

    • by kiwi_james (512638) on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @08:53PM (#39639133)

      I think you're missing the point. Chrome OS is not really for consumers - it's for Enterprises and Educational institutions.

      These groups want a device that is highly secure, low / no maintenance and can be given to any random employee / student without much thinking about it. Add in the Enteprise controls that are available through a simple Web GUI and you can massively simplify the management and operation of your IT assets.

      Is it something you give to your accountants or marketing team - no. Is it something you give to people working in the field or call centre staff or students - yes it is.

      When you think of it this way, then Chrome OS is quite a unique solution and not worth the slamming that everyone here is giving it. There are some valid questions about how much of this could be folded into Android - but at present it has value, just probably not to you.

      • by jmorris42 (1458) * <jmorris@beauTOKYO.org minus city> on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @09:01PM (#39639201)

        > it's for Enterprises and Educational institutions.

        In other words, wouldn't they be happier with TERMINALS? That is what we are talking about after all, reinvent terminals and centralized computing, the priesthood and all that stuff people snuk in Apple ][ machines all those years ago to escape from? Only instead of VT102 escape codes we are using HTML5 on much more capable terminals. And now there is a cool video by some hipster douche telling us we don't want a computer anymore, we just want to use Google's instead of a blue suited IBM rep selling a mainframe.

        But it is the same siren song, users with computers is dangerous, expensive, etc. Let US take all that away... for low monthly payments.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by kiwi_james (512638)

          > Only instead of VT102 escape codes we are using HTML5 on much more capable terminals
          Awesome false analogy...comparing a terminal to a web browser experience.

          > But it is the same siren song, users with computers is dangerous, expensive, etc. Let US take all that away... for low monthly payments

          If you've ever worked in a large enterprise you'll have seen the cost that businesses spend on trying to manage and maintain their IT assets. Personally, in the days when things can be accessed via a browser, I

          • by swillden (191260) <shawn-ds@willden.org> on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @12:16AM (#39640583) Homepage Journal

            I'm blessed with a glut of computing hardware, I suppose, but I have a desktop, a laptop, a chromebook, a tablet and a smartphone. Oh, and I have a bluetooth keyboard which can be used with the tablet or the phone. With all of those options, I would have predicted that I'd never use the chromebook. It seems like if I need a full keyboard I'd use the laptop or desktop, while if I just need to do something small, I'd use the tablet, or the phone.

            In fact, I find the Chromebook fills a couple of important niches in my life. First, it's what I reach for when I want to look something up on the web, fast. It's more portable than the desktop, quicker to get running than the laptop and more useful (for web-based stuff) than the tablet or the phone. Second, it's my "shareable" computer. I'm not handing my laptop to anyone. I wouldn't even if it weren't a company laptop and therefore forbidden to be shared with non-employees. My tablet and my phone are even less shareable.

            But the Chromebook? I log out, hand the little machine over and say "just log in with your Google account". And for people who use lots of web apps, all their apps are "there". If they use Chrome on other computers and use Chrome Sync, when they log in all of their bookmarks, etc., are all on the Chromebook already.

            The combination of instant access, super battery life, built-in 3G data and shareability makes my Chromebook one of the most-used computers in my house.

            (Disclaimer: I work for Google, but have no particular interest in selling Chromebooks. I just quite like mine -- though I probably wouldn't have one if Google hadn't given it to me.)

          • Only instead of VT102 escape codes we are using HTML5 on much more capable terminals

            Awesome false analogy...comparing a terminal to a web browser experience.

            True ... the terminal just works, while the "web browser experience" breaks something on updates, breaks in different ways on different browsers, and gave us the endless suck known as Facebook and Twitter and Google+.

            Nobody's buying these PoS boxes when they can get an iPad2 for $20 more ($420 vs $400), and iPad3 with 4G for $70 more than the $450

        • by slack_justyb (862874) on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @09:53PM (#39639585)

          In other words, wouldn't they be happier with TERMINALS?

          I'm with you, of course, I'm of the opinion that the trends are but a pendulum between central and distributed. I'd say we're still on the waxing side of the central ethos, but give it time and people will eventually want their data back.

          However, I think it's all pretty neat. I for one am tired of the two decades of Microsoft that we are waking up from. People are seeing that the field of computers is much more diverse (which comes as no surprise for the people here on Slashdot, but now Grandma is asking "PC or Mac?")

          We all are thinking "yawn" but c'mon, the industry needed a big shake up, and while technically we all here see this becoming nothing more than what we had in the 1970. We are changing the vendor from being one to anyone on the Intertubes. We are changing the equipment from being just a terminal to anything that can have a web browser. We are changing the people who create the content from those locked in a warm basement with punch cards, to a varity of diverse people from artist to programmers and everything in between. However, more importantly, this is showing the general consumer that there isn't just one computer to rule them all.

          Slashdot users can smirk all they want about how this was already crystal clear to us, but the fact that even Microsoft's position is now challenged, forecasters say that Apple cannot stay at the top, and Google is all over the place unpredicable; means that the rule of alpha vendor may just be in fact ending, hopefully.

        • And increases satisfaction in some contexts. Look at the popularity of fast food.?. "Do you want a hamburger or a hamburger with cheese on it? Maybe you want some fish shaped like a hamburger on a hamburger bun?"

          A lot of users I know are sort of afraid of their complex flexible machines. (Sad but true.) And, it seems to them, just when they get used to them MS or Apple upgrades. Yikes! Of course, as you pointed out, that is exciting for a good number users (people like you and me) but a lot of people don'

          • Totally agree, that is exactly why most people prefer to live in prison.
            .
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            .
            .
            .
            .
            .
            .
            .
            .
            </sarcasm>

            • Most people IMHO do prefer to live in prison. Only they call it their comfort zone. Perhaps you are one of the daring few who seek adventure, challenge and excitement? Oh, wait!. This is Slashdot. Prison or mom's basement? Is there a difference?
        • by Artifakt (700173) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @12:11AM (#39640553)

          If you're going to be precise, we're not talking a move back to dumb terminals with Chrome, but a less restrictive move to more specialized computing devices instead of a general purpose computer. We are discussing putting limits on users, and limits that many here on slashdot would chafe under, but they aren't as drastic as the terms you chose.

          For one thing, an OS such as Windows already has some of the same limits. Using the box for art may mean either a lot of expense for a legitimate copy of Photoshop or running pirated copies, or using something like the Gimp that may not be compatable with the next service pack and may never have good support. High prices for lots of business, math or music software similarly mean a lot of users can't afford to legally build the tool that can focus on some of those "General Purpose" uses. Keeping system hooks and APIs and such secret is a separate cause of making machines into non-general purpose computers, or specialty boxes, or whatever you want to call them. Apple's walled garden approach is effectively a vector pointed away from "General Purpose" computers in similar ways. Even Linux has some of this problem when you look at the whole package, i.e. what people mean by saying designers are 'dumbing down' the Gnome interface is precisely the same as saying they think less variety of purposes are suitable under it.

          However, if you call those limited boxes terminals, I suspect the people pushing Chrome OS, Cloud Computing, and other things will both point out the differences from those old 'green on black texty thingees' until the similarities are obscured, and keep treating the base Windows or OS X type system as though it were a totally pure "General Computing" environment and the browser based systems were just a small step down from that purity. We do better to stress that even the baseline OSes have many, many points where they veer away from the idea of supporting a box that can do anything the user wants, (at least if it has the raw computing power to handle that task). Most users have run into the problem of not being able to do some task or other any better, even on a much more powerful machine than they once used. Or they remember being able to do something on an older machine that they can't do at all anymore. Warning them that these browser focused 'solutions' will have more of that sort of problem is something many of them will understand.

        • by crutchy (1949900)
          a laptop with chrome os is basically a web-based terminal. ok so it runs an operating system locally, but how would you propose to boot a completely dumb terminal with a modern system over nothing but wifi? pxe maybe, and maybe for gigabit cat6, but i wouldn't have thought really practical for wifi, even in educational institutions. i remember years ago there was netware+win for workgroups. gosh now i feel like grandpa simpson. "it was the style at the time"
      • For one I see better terminal type options (RDP thin clients are easy to get). However if that is what it is for Google needs to L2enterprisesupport. Google is good at many things but supporting the enterprise isn't one of them. Their idea of support seems to be "Just read a webpage and if that doesn't have the answer, ummm, don't bother us!"

        Also they could, you know, market it for that if that's the idea. Being that I work at an educational institution, quite a major research university, and they've never

      • I think you're missing the point. Chrome OS is not really for consumers - it's for Enterprises and Educational institutions.

        Actually, I would argue that you're right and wrong concurrently.

        I agree with your second assertion: this is absolutely geared towards large organisations which have a user-set whose members perform routinised and low-skilled job duties (think data entry or customer service), and can access all the tools they need from a browser.

        However, you're wrong in saying consumers would find no use for this. I can think of a number of people in my life -- older baby-boomers -- who do all of their stuff online and wo

    • by symbolset (646467) *

      Software projects are never done. Netware went into receivership with a considerable to-do list, as did every other retired project.

      Android and Chrome may converge one day.

    • It surprises me they are still working on Chrome OS

      It doesn't surprise me at all because I have some insight into the level of hubris in the executive suite there.

    • It surprises me they are still working on Chrome OS. Its probably not too bad, but I don't exactly see a huge demand for it, especially since they also have android which would work nearly as well for what they want to do with Chrome OS.

      I kinda wish they pushed for Wave harder. That looked like something I would use.

      On the contrary, seems to me that Chrome OS, or more appropriately, Chromium OS, would be a perfect replacement for Windows XP to people who can't buy Windows 7 or any extra hardware to run it. Unlike other Linuxes, here they would have Google behind the thing. Actually, more appropriately, Google ought to escalate the role of Chrome OS from being just a web OS to a general purpose one, like Windows.

      I do worry about things like driver support. Incidentally, is there any reason Google chose to go w/ Lin

    • Android probably has about two years left, tops. Google - still as ADD as ever - is rapidly losing interest (and control) of their idle plaything. Plus, the handset manufacturers are tiring of paying blackmail money to Microsoft for their specious strawman claims that could only be knocked down after spending tens of millions and years in court.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Then they'll catch up to Windows 95.

  • About Aura (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @08:41PM (#39639035)

    Here's the relevant info about Aura [chromium.org].

    • by zarlino (985890)

      Just noticed that the documents author is Ben Goodger, the guy that started Firefox.

      • Does that mean that it will turn into memory-leaking bloatware, or are the memory leaks and bloat already included by default?

        Actually, don't bother answering - nobody's buying chromebooks anyway. They're way over-priced, under-powered, extremely limited devices.

        Remember how everyone was so excited when they first came out? Predicting that if they were sold for $200, they'd have an impact? Well, 2 years later, they're still twice the price or more, while all the competition has gotten cheaper and mor

    • by unixisc (2429386)
      Does it run on X11, or does it have a display manager of its own?
      • Mostly it doesn't run at all - if you had bothered reading the article, it's buggy, crashes a lot, and the big deal is a web app that runs "almost like wordpad".

        In other words, it's not even up to the level Win3x and Write. The only "Aura" around this is the smell of a dying project.

        For $120 less than the current samsung, you can buy an iPad2. Or for $30 more, the new iPad. Better battery life, more portable, weighs less than half as much, way way more apps, touch screen, better build quality ...

  • That will run Linux. If so I am excited.

  • The spec for CSS 2.1 was laid down in 1997 - 15 years ago. Today, you're STILL lucky if you can get non-trivial pages to render the same on different browsers without all sorts of tricks and tweaks.

    This is ridiculous. 15 years, and CSS 2.1 is still broken. At this rate, it's a safe bet that you won't see CSS 3x implemented properly in your lifetime.

    People want new features, but more importantly, they want stuff that works. Web browsers are not application platforms, and the whole DOM tree concept is

    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      This is the reason that CSS 2.1 isn't bug free yet in any browser. CSS 2 change list [w3.org]. It's a moving target. Granted there are some browsers with very terrible CSS support, but the CSS Spec is very complicated. Add that to the fact that most pages don't even start out with standards compliant HTML, so the browser has to guess what to do because you didn't close your tags properly, or you put a div inside a span.
      • It's not a "moving target" - it's a badly written specification. Pick a change at random - a lot of them are mistakes - whoever wrote the spec left too much as either ambiguous or "assumed."

        So you can have perfectly-formed html and css, and it will still break. It's "broken by design" - just like we used to say about Windows. Also, no amount of back-filling is going to change the fundamental problems - html and css and javascript are not a good way to build programs, and never will be.

    • Apple don't make their money because people want apps. They make their money because people want Apple. It was the iMac and iPod that brought them out of bankruptcy. People want something that is easy to use and just works. They'll pay extra if it makes them look like a douchebag hipster.
      • "It was the iMac and iPod that brought them out of bankruptcy"

        Apple never went bankrupt. And no, Bill Gates' $150 million investment didn't amount to more than a month or so of working capital - they had enough to last, but they needed the public assurance that Microsoft would continue to make Office for the Mac.

        "People want something that is easy to use and just works."

        Which is why they want Apple. And why, given a choice, they'll take an iPad and an app as opposed the the crapfest of browser-worl

        • Apple nearly [businessinsider.com] went bankrupt.
          • Not even close. Not only did they have a lot more than $150 million in the bank, they had already returned to making a profit the year before Gates investment. Profitable companies with money in the bank can afford to do things like buy NeXT for $429 million + 1.5 million shares. Companies that are "nearly bankrupt", not so much, hmm :-)
            • Yes. Apple, run by Steve Jobs bought NeXT from Steve Jobs.
              • Steve Jobs didn't get any money from the purchase - that went to the investors (people like Ross Perot and Canon Corp.) He did get 1.5 million shares, the sort of performance-based incentive plan that's quite common. Grow the business, your shares grow, tank it, your shares tank.
              • by cmdrbuzz (681767)

                When Apple bought NeXT, Steve Jobs was not running Apple.... Gil Amelio was.

  • by ThorGod (456163) on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @09:26PM (#39639403) Journal

    Hey, google, do us a favor and actually do something ground breaking with your OS. Take some cues from Plan9 that were never implemented on a desktop. Maybe make it more like a network OS than a hardware OS?

    It sounds like it's going to be little more than a bootable interface to the web, I know. But google does employ people that were part of the Plan9 project, so it's not like they can't do something NEW.

    Also, let me not be the first to say...I hope they realize they have to respect their users' privacy on their actual hardware...(I suspect they wont.)

    • by PCM2 (4486)

      It sounds like it's going to be little more than a bootable interface to the web, I know.

      Uhhh... you know... Chrome OS has existed for three years now. This is just a UI update.

      • by ThorGod (456163)

        Uhhh... you know... Chrome OS has existed for three years now. This is just a UI update.

        Yeah, I know it's existed. I just wish they'd do something other than a webos...something original, new, useful, interesting.

  • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Tuesday April 10, 2012 @09:51PM (#39639567)

    Don't look now, but Google has officially revealed their intentions to go after Windows and OS X.

    So creating Chrome OS in the first place wasn't enough of a clue for you?

    • Not really. It was released when Google still gave their engineers 20% time. With the result that they'd just release huge amounts of beta software with no apparent business purpose. ChromeOS was indistinguishable from the rest.

  • Google moves ever closer to gaining complete access to our personal information, and more.

    Imagine a full Google OS, no monetary cost, offered under their current licenses. It's slick, clean, multi-platform, perhaps always in beta, but backed by a company with some of the best software engineering resources the planet has to offer, creating a near-perfect end user experience, all the while farming information from its users by default.

    Sorry, but I'm not having any.

    Paranoid? You're damned right I'm paranoi
  • This is certainly the future. The only problem I see is that this future is not "now". Dataplans are currently too expensive (limited) for this to make sense.

    I do not want to be locked out of all my software once:
    - I go over my monthly cap.
    - I leave the country (and am not willing to pay the roaming costs)
    - My internet connection goes down
    - Go into a rural area

    I also experience hickups when travelling in the train. With my 3g i-net (in Switzerland) traveling in the train is r

  • VMware Image? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Amiralul (1164423) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:13AM (#39640917) Homepage
    Is there a way to test this new Chrome OS dev release in a virtual machine, like VMware?
  • Another cloud feature has been added, this one to the updated photo editor. Photos can finally be uploaded individually or in bulk to Picasa. Curiously, it’s the only option currently available when you click the share icon in the photo editor — Google Plus hasn’t been added yet, though that seems inevitable.

    Picasa and Google+ Albums became one [google.com] a while back, almost a whole month ago. Keep up. ;) - HEX

  • Unfortunately, once companies get as large and rich as Google is now, they start to attract people who use their riches to realize projects that otherwise wouldn't stand a chance in an efficient market: ChromeOS, Go, Dart, native client, etc. Companies like Google should be asking themselves: would people be doing this at a startup if their own money was at stake? If not, it's probably not worth doing.

    • I think ChromeOS is probably DOA but I much rather companies try new things with their money rather than just do the safe non-innovative thing and all the money just goes to management bonuses.

      I also find most people who throw around the phrase NIH probably can't program their way out of a wet paper bag.
  • Concepts like the taskbar, process list, or dock are so ingrained in the way people who have computer experience think about using their systems that it was inevitable for this feature to make it's way into pretty much any user interface on the planet.

    If you think of the "new" tablet-enabling interfaces, all they really do is specify a larger grid for the desktop of icons so they're easy to touch as well as click. That's the big "innovation", folks. Mouse gestures with your finger and bigger icons.

    Bu

    • by msobkow (48369)

      I wonder how long it will be until the Apple fanbois realize single-tasking operating systems are a joke at any level of portability... :P

  • From the screenshots, the aethetics and colors, transparency, etc, look pretty much like whatever-microsoft's-window-manager is called.

As the trials of life continue to take their toll, remember that there is always a future in Computer Maintenance. -- National Lampoon, "Deteriorata"

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