WebOS? For real?

    8 July 2009, terribly early in the morning

Google is making an operating system. An operating system that sounds like it is designed solely to run web pages. What?

A few years back Kottke was arguing that Google would do something like this, develop a WebOS. I thought this was the dumbest idea ever. I still do. Web applications have come a long way, but at the end of the day they are still a bunch of web pages. Apple’s Mobile Me web site is fairly cutting edge when it comes to putting a rich UI up on the web, but even that seems lacking when compared to the ‘real’ versions of Mail, Calender, Addressbook, etc. Computers are stupid-fast nowadays. Yes, even those lame-ass netbooks are fairly powerful machines. To not take advantage of this computing power seems foolish. Why run an entire web browser if the end goal is to view and edit contacts in an address book?

Applications that seamlessly take advantage of the Internet in novel ways are to be applauded. If my file system backed itself up automatically and securely to computers half way across the world, that’d be amazing. Apple’s MobileMe offering got off to a rocky start, but I see that as the direction computing should be moving in. Apple has a suite of powerful applications that can communicate with the web to share what actually matters to you: your data. This seamless movement of data between applications, computers, etc, is what the computer industries goal should be. Trying to shoehorn everything into a web page, not so much.

 

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