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Google Announces Chrome OS, For Release Mid-2010

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the bring-on-the-shiny dept.

Google 1089

Zaiff Urgulbunger writes "After years of speculation, Google has announced Google Chrome OS, which should be available mid-2010. Initially targeting netbooks, its main selling points are speed, simplicity and security — which kind of implies that the current No.1 OS doesn't deliver in these areas! The Chrome OS will run on both x86 and ARM architectures, uses a Linux kernel with a new windowing system. According to Google, 'For application developers, the web is the platform. All web-based applications will automatically work and new applications can be written using your favorite web technologies. And of course, these apps will run not only on Google Chrome OS, but on any standards-based browser on Windows, Mac and Linux thereby giving developers the largest user base of any platform.' Google says that this new OS is separate from Android, as the latter was designed for mobile phones and set-top boxes, whereas Chrome OS is designed 'for people who spend most of their time on the web.'" The New York Times' coverage is worth reading, and there are stories popping up all over the web.

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fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28619925)

BITCHES SAY WHAT

Uh huh. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28619927)

That's GNU/Chrome, thanks.

Re:Uh huh. (-1, Troll)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619993)

NetBSD/Android actually.

Re:Uh huh. (-1, Redundant)

suso (153703) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620099)

You do bring up an interesting point. Getting people to try an operating system is hard and not for the timid. I'm skeptical that Google would be able to get people to try it. I mean they could do one of a few things:

  • 1) Sell some device that has the OS on it (would need to be cheap otherwise who would spend the money on it besides hobbyists)
  • 2) Run it in a virtual machine and make it more as a program that you'd run on current OSes (so what are the benefits then?)
  • 3) Try to get people to download it, install it alongside or replace their current OS (how many of us would really do this except to try it out as a toy and then go back to our other OS? Open source has a community drive behind it that encourages people to help others install it, but commercial OSes don't really get that kind of momentum.)

Seems to me like if Google wants this to work, they need to open source it. And I think they will run into the argument of "I can already run web apps on my current system and it generally works ok. Plus I can run private apps if I want to."

Re:Uh huh. (5, Informative)

beowulfcluster (603942) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620179)

"Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code." Funny what you can learn from TFA.

Re:Uh huh. (1)

suso (153703) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620317)

Why read the article when people can reply to my comment with the relevant details. ;-) Actually, just so that I don't sound like a complete ass, I read the MSNBC article before coming here this morning and it didn't mention anything about open source, but of course why would it I guess. I would think the Slashdot summary would have mentioned that as it would be a VERY important point.

If they do make it fully open, that would be awesome.

Re:Uh huh. (1)

merrickm (1192625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620221)

I imagine this is the sort of thing you'd try to sell not so much to individual users but to businesses- a business with a lot of employees on doing work on computers that has everything it needs its employees to do as a web app (or could have everything as a web app after, perhaps, paying Google to help them set that up) installs this thin-client OS on all their employee workstations and, assuming it works as well Google hopes, cuts down on IT headaches.

Competition is good, baby! (5, Interesting)

bheer (633842) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619929)

This is excellent news, because a commercial vendor with *lots* of clout will - finally! - push Linux to OEMs. Like Android, they really want to go after the OEM market with this one. Don't be fooled by the "it's mainly for web browsing" spin - You might not run AutoCAD or Photoshop yet (or ever) on it, but apps (especially HTML5 enabled apps) for home users will follow, targeting the XP/Vista Home Edition user types. And this would be sweet for corporate desktop deployments -- no virus hassles, little to update, most stuff stored on the server (assuming they get offline support sorted out well, of course).

Fingers crossed that Google's "Linux" will have more polish than what's there in distros so far. Microsoft "love our licensing or leave" and Linux distros "we're open source so live with the flaws" will then both be on notice.

Interestingly, Chrome OS is apparently a bare-bones Linux + a "new windowing system" + the Chrome browser.

I can't wait to see what the new windowing system is. I'd really like to see some innovation there, much like OSX created an amazing GUI layer on top what is essentially Mach/BSD. The challenge to Microsoft aside, this will be a wake-up call to Gnome/KDE. The good news is, because this ought to be open source, the OSS community can really get behind this and improve other products.

And oh, anyone else notice the irony that the Chrome _browser_ for Linux seems largely like an afterthought right now? Still, way to go, Google.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (-1, Flamebait)

derrickh (157646) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619963)

I don't see anything saying this is Linux or uses any Linux-derived kernal.

D

Re:Competition is good, baby! (5, Informative)

cheetham (247087) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620013)

While there is no mention of a kernal, it does appear to use a Linux kernel:

"The Chrome OS will run on both x86 and ARM architectures, uses a Linux kernel with a new windowing system." :-P

Re:Competition is good, baby! (4, Interesting)

suso (153703) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620167)

So then really this Chrome OS will be a Linux distribution. Technically right?

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

slim (1652) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620269)

Yes, but one without X.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (2, Interesting)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620273)

Maybe. But not really.

Most distributions of Linux follow a lot of common standards.
Similar directory structure. Similar Apps installed...

If you just take the Linux Kernel then just build an OS on top of that you would have something dramatically different then a Linux Distribution.

Lets look at OS X. OS X is based off a Unix Kernel. But it isn't much of Unix Distribution. Apple just left Unix compatibility so they can market it.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (4, Informative)

noundi (1044080) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620337)

You're wrong. It is a Linux distribution. Distributions can differ from eachother as much as they please. That's the fucking beauty of it so don't even begin to undermine it, troll. And don't compare Unix variants to Linux distributions, that only shows how little you know about the subject.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

noundi (1044080) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620279)

That's correct.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (5, Informative)

bheer (633842) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620023)

From the horse's mouth [blogspot.com] :

Google Chrome OS will run on both x86 as well as ARM chips and we are working with multiple OEMs to bring a number of netbooks to market next year. The software architecture is simple -- Google Chrome running within a new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

bgarcia (33222) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620041)

I don't see anything saying this is Linux or uses any Linux-derived kernal.

From the Official Google Blog posting [blogspot.com] :

The software architecture is simple - Google Chrome running within a new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

yossarianuk (1402187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620047)

It 100% does use a linux kernel - read from the horses mouth

http://googleblog.blogspot.com/ [blogspot.com]

"Google Chrome OS will run on both x86 as well as ARM chips and we are working with multiple OEMs to bring a number of netbooks to market next year. The software architecture is simple â" Google Chrome running within a new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel."

This is what the world has been waiting for....

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620073)

Google says the software architecture will basically be the current Chrome browser running inside âoea new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel.â

link [techcrunch.com]

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

tcr (39109) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620089)

From Google's blog :
  Google Chrome OS will run on both x86 as well as ARM chips and we are working with multiple OEMs to bring a number of netbooks to market next year. The software architecture is simple -- Google Chrome running within a new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel
 
http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/07/introducing-google-chrome-os.html

Re:Competition is good, baby! (-1, Troll)

ionix5891 (1228718) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619967)

google dont care about Linux

its only a means to earn more $$$ and gain more 00 (thats eyeballs)

people still buy that whole do no evil koolaid

Re:Competition is good, baby! (2)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620171)

Who cares whether they care? They will care to make it useful on real hardware, and that means improved hardware support.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620219)

There's a valid point in there somewhere, but you'd have to dig for it with a pickaxe. You get modded -1 Troll, and also -1 Illiterate. Digg misses you.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620037)

If there is one application running on operating system, how much need is there for windowing? Couldn't everything neccessary be done with Ajax and at most with some application switcher?

Re:Competition is good, baby! (4, Informative)

wisty (1335733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620151)

Even with just a browser, you need multiple windows. When an AJAX command tells the browser to pop up a new window, the browser uses the native windowing system to pop up a new window. You also need windows for multiple browser instances, tabs, menus, and other fun stuff. It's not turtles all the way down.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620063)

And oh, anyone else notice the irony that the Chrome _browser_ for Linux seems largely like an afterthought right now? Still, way to go, Google.

I remember someone talking about this, citing the lack of standards when it comes to doing anything GUI-wise in linux which is slowing development. If this OS really does ditch X etc then Google have a clean slate on which to design the browser.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (5, Informative)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620261)

Google has recently been active in directfb [directfb.org] .

Re:Competition is good, baby! (2, Insightful)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620085)

The challenge to Microsoft aside, this will be a wake-up call to Gnome/KDE. The

Well I hear you about Gnome. It seems like they have just run out of gas.

I think the problem with KDE is that they woke up too much. KDE 4 seems like a project where they have genuinely bit off more than they can chew. They got so caught up in the big picture and the big rewrite that they seem to have actually regressed at the details level. I've ripped Gnome and KDE's file dialogs on my own site... way behind the times.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (4, Interesting)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620183)

I can't wait to see what the new windowing system is.

You and me both, but I'm a little confused. What do they mean by "windowing system"? Are they doing a rewrite of X11, or do they mean they are designing new window decorations and widgets (e.g. gtk or qt), or do they mean the whole desktop environment (e.g., kde, gnome)?

If it's a replacement for X11, why are they doing that? I could see that maybe X11 has too much legacy code and really isn't designed to be the most efficient for a single screen laptop where you don't need an X windows server per se, but on the other hand, I can't imagine that they are going to need something that can outperform X11 for gpu intensive applications like gaming development. I'd love to be wrong about that last bit though. Whatever they mean by it though, it'll be nice to see.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620281)

If it's a replacement for X11, why are they doing that? I could see that maybe X11 has too much legacy code and really isn't designed to be the most efficient for a single screen laptop where you don't need an X windows server per se, but on the other hand, I can't imagine that they are going to need something that can outperform X11 for gpu intensive applications like gaming development. I'd love to be wrong about that last bit though. Whatever they mean by it though, it'll be nice to see.

It's a replacement for X; Chrome OS is aimed at netbooks, so they're going for lightweight and speed. No gpu intensive applications involved.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (4, Interesting)

wisty (1335733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620191)

Doesn't this sound a lot like iPhone 1.0, when SJ told developers to use "Safari" as the app framework?

Still, I guess nobody does web dev like google.

Re:Competition is good, baby! (1)

Bralkein (685733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620289)

I can't wait to see what the new windowing system is. I'd really like to see some innovation there, much like OSX created an amazing GUI layer on top what is essentially Mach/BSD. The challenge to Microsoft aside, this will be a wake-up call to Gnome/KDE. The good news is, because this ought to be open source, the OSS community can really get behind this and improve other products.

Well I don't know about GNOME and KDE, they certainly appear to be putting a lot of effort in seeing as how GNOME are forging ahead with their fancy new desktop UI and KDE basically just released their new desktop system which they continue to improve. You have a point though; GUI-type stuff on Linux continues to be a source of disappointment and it would be really great to see if a big player like Google could really come along and shake things up with a radical new approach, all being open source to boot. I've always suspected the underpinnings were at fault (sorry X, I love you but still) so maybe Google's new system could even be useful for GNOME and KDE too! I guess we'll just have to wait and see :)

Re:Competition is good, baby! (5, Insightful)

jipn4 (1367823) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620315)

I'd really like to see some innovation there, much like OSX created an amazing GUI layer on top what is essentially Mach/BSD

The OS X GUI layer is essentially NeXTStep on a revised Display Postscript. It's slower and more resource intensive than X11, its graphics is targeted primarily at desktop usage. Where is the innovation?

X11 has been innovative from its inception, and it continues to be amazingly innovative today. For example, the kinds of visual effects Compiz delivers effortlessly and cleanly are much harder to achieve in OS X.

this will be a wake-up call to Gnome/KDE

What exactly do you think will be the "wake-up call"? Both Gnome and KDE have non-X11 backends, but people don't use them because there really is no benefit associated with getting rid of X11.

A non-X11 backend may make sense for Chrome OS because Chrome OS probably needs less functionality than X11 provides and it makes writing drivers easier. But in terms of innovation and functionality, X11 is second to none.

My hopes for Chrome OS (1)

CdBee (742846) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620361)

1) Dump X11 and all its 1950s cruft. its just NOT APPROPRIATE

2) provide porting guidelines for people who wish to make/convert native applications for chrome OS, for those things one doesnt want to do on the web (DVD replay/ripping, video editing, photo editing, online backup clients, scanner/printer utilities

3) provide an app-store for the above in the android model (unregulated, accessed through a software client)

Please let there be no X! (4, Insightful)

A12m0v (1315511) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619941)

There is no mention of X anywhere, and hopefully there will be no X.

*fingers crossed*

Re:Please let there be no X! (1, Insightful)

Churla (936633) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619945)

It would make more sense for this to use an adapted version of the Andriod GUI rather than X.

Re:Please let there be no X! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620331)

Somehow I doubt they're going to ditch Xorg and write their own hardware acceleration drivers. It'd require a ton of resources for little gain.

Re:Please let there be no X! (2, Funny)

SpooForBrains (771537) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620383)

Re Ken Thompson's quote ... I'd LOVE to see what KDE and GNOME could give me without X present. It's very strange, I removed them from my machine, and none of my desktop environments would run! What's up with that?

Native Client (4, Interesting)

Fzz (153115) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619951)

I wonder if they have Google Native Client [google.com] in mind when they say they're going to re-engineer security from the ground up? Very cool technology.

Hold on a sec... (5, Funny)

mc moss (1163007) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619957)

Buying stocks in companies that make chairs.

Re:Hold on a sec... (4, Funny)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620121)

Beat you to it. I bought stock in the company which affixes pub furniture to the ground.

Huh? (5, Insightful)

GF678 (1453005) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619965)

its main selling points are speed, simplicity and security -- which kind of implies that the current No.1 OS doesn't deliver in these areas!

Chrome OS focusing on speed, simplicity and security does not imply Windows cannot deliver in these areas. It's just an alternative operating system, and has yet to prove itself. The summary sound rather, well, dumb.

There... fixed that for you... (2, Insightful)

denzacar (181829) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620113)

Chrome OS focusing on speed, simplicity and security does not imply Windows cannot deliver in these areas. It's just a still non existent operating system, and has yet to show anything other than a blog post [blogspot.com] about its future. The summary sound rather, well, dumb.

Re:Huh? (5, Interesting)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620123)

Chrome OS focusing on speed, simplicity and security does not imply Windows cannot deliver in these areas. It's just an alternative operating system, and has yet to prove itself. The summary sound rather, well, dumb.

Oh, don't beat around the bush. I'll come right out and say it. I think Windows 7 is fast, safe, and simple to use. I have Vista, Win7 and Ubuntu 8 on my machine, each with its own drive, and while Vista is a tad bit better than Ubuntu, Win7 runs rings around both, and is easier to use than either. I do not think I have enjoyed using Windows this much since NT first got the Win95 shell.

Re:Huh? (1)

neumayr (819083) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620169)

The summary says that this Chrome OS's "main selling points are speed, simplicity and security". That's different from focus.
Of course, that doesn't mean that the "current No.1 OS" (and all others too, actually) doesn't deliver in all those areas - just one of them. Which, in most cases, would probably be simplicity, which in turn implies the other two.

Re:Huh? (0)

stlthVector (468932) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620255)

In less than one year Google made Chrome faster and more secure than Microsoft was able to make IE since they bought NCSA Mosaic many years ago. Firefox is a great browser but it's still not as fast as Chrome and Chrome has been proven more secure - I'm sure due to its application virtualization technology.

It wouldn't surprise me if Google has a better (faster, more secure, does what most people need) OS than Microsoft or Apple in a year or two.

Re:Huh? (1)

rallymatte (707679) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620329)

Well, you may be right, it might not imply that, but it's still true that it cannot.

Re:Huh? (1)

Mojo01010011 (1337759) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620345)

Agreed, the summary seems overly excited about an unproven product... How long will the Chrome OS be in beta? 4 years? 5 years?

Breaking News! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28619971)

My Grandad already called me an hour ago and told me this.

Javashit sucks (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28619975)

There is one problem for this plan: javashit sucks. It's truly an awful language.

I expect the future of network applications will be someone who can make a layer to run real existing applications over the network.

Fear (5, Insightful)

chord.wav (599850) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619981)

I wouldn't run an OS from a company who's business is knowing your consumer preferences, but suit for yourself. I'm sure there's a positive side of this story too, but I let that to another user.

Look on the bright side... (1)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620131)

I wouldn't run an OS from a company who's business is knowing your consumer preferences, but suit for yourself. I'm sure there's a positive side of this story too, but I let that to another user

But just imagine, that your operating system's event viewer will cheerfully announce that it identified great new places with that brunette oral porn you've seemingly been interested... just when the wife logs in!

Re:Fear (1)

Mauzl (1312177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620241)

Its open source. Where is the risk?

Re:Fear (1)

introspekt.i (1233118) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620321)

Developers' time = $$$

Re:Fear (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620275)

You mean like Microsoft.....

Re:Fear (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620347)

The positive aspect is that even giant soulless corporations have decided that open source is in their best interests. Maybe once the spyware is stripped out there will be some small thing of use to us left.

Chrome is the new Emacs? (5, Funny)

deadbeefcafe (1371017) | more than 5 years ago | (#28619995)

Chrome is a nice operating system, but it could do with a decent web browser.

Re:Chrome is the new Emacs? (3, Interesting)

Marcika (1003625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620259)

Chrome is a nice operating system, but it could do with a decent web browser.

I'm sure Firefox will be one of the first big applications ported onto this "new windowing system" in ChromeOS... They wouldn't want ot miss this marketing opportunity!

(And it would be a good idea, actually - having a decent web browser that blocks all the ads that Chrome won't.)

Re:Chrome is the new Emacs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620291)

System Vi much better!

Google should not screw this up... (1)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620005)

I mean, Google should maintain sanity within the Chrome OS ecosystem by making sure it does not fragment (read morph) into what we have in Linux land -- a deplorable situation.

This also puts more pressure on Google. They should now beef up their online application presence. To me, I find Google Docs still wanting compared to the competition.

The web is NOT the OS (5, Insightful)

syousef (465911) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620039)

The web is not the OS. The web is...the web. I do NOT want everything to be a goddamn web app. Web apps work very well for certain applications, and Google has shown that they can push the limits with dynamic content, but that does not mean the web application is an appropriate model for every damned application. I don't like the Chrome browser and I don't need an OS named Chrome that is actually Linux with a lame web browser bolted on as the front end. Google does search very well, but I've hated most of their other stuff. (Google Earth is one exception) I expect no different from this.

Re:The web is NOT the OS (5, Funny)

bgarcia (33222) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620107)

You forgot to tell us to "get off your lawn".

Re:The web is NOT the OS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620165)

I don't need an OS named Ubuntu that is actually Linux with a lame web browser (firefox - pfffh) bolted on.

Re:The web is NOT the OS (2, Insightful)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620189)

I don't like the Chrome browser and I don't need an OS named Chrome that is actually Linux with a lame web browser bolted on as the front end.

So then don't use it.

Re:The web is NOT the OS (1)

dintech (998802) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620341)

Given Google's history, I'm betting it will run Java apps.

Re:The web is NOT the OS (1)

hagnat (752654) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620363)

you know, no one is forcing you to use it or any other google app

Automatically or automagically? (3, Insightful)

denzacar (181829) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620045)

"All Web-based applications will automatically work and new applications can be written using your favorite Web technologies," the company said.

Depends on your definition of "automatically". From what I hear, there is this little prerequisite called "internet access".

 
Also, while it appears that many are finding the news of the new Google Chrome Linux OS a cause to celebrate, I would advise quiet optimism at best.
They are yet to release Chrome for anything other than Windows.

A complete Chrome OS may still be somewhere in the (rather) far future.

Re:Automatically or automagically? (1)

tcr (39109) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620211)

"All Web-based applications will automatically work and new applications can be written using your favorite Web technologies," the company said.

Depends on your definition of "automatically". From what I hear, there is this little prerequisite called "internet access".

That's a valid point...
In some cases, I guess they'll use Gears for limited offline access.
(much like I read recent Gmail messages on Android while underground on the subway...)

Who then competes with Google? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620051)

This is an interesting move, though I'm not sure how much of an impact Google with have on the market except for stealing select geeks and hipsters who don't have enough money to buy Macs. There's a long way to go to unseat Microsoft. Google should be careful not to become everything everyone hated about Microsoft. They're a lot more "evil" than they claim to be, what with monopolized the world's information and knowledge.

Web schmeb (1)

MadFarmAnimalz (460972) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620053)

For application developers, the web is the platform.

Speak up, fella. I'd like to hear the other 99% of the software industry to hear that.

"its main selling points"... (1)

prbt (651156) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620055)

"its main selling points are speed, simplicity and security"

Pick any two.

Re:"its main selling points"... (5, Funny)

CountBrass (590228) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620087)

It's main selling points are speed, simplicity, security and an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope.

Re:"its main selling points"... (1)

hansraj (458504) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620339)

It's main selling points are speed, simplicity, security, an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope, and penguin parts.

Re:"its main selling points"... (1)

karstux (681641) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620173)

I don't think so. Simplicity often implies efficiency, which leads to speed. Simplicity can also mean a lean, clean architecture, which is conductive to security. As much as I like "pick any two" memes, this probably isn't one of them.

Re:"its main selling points"... (1)

arth1 (260657) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620313)

Considering that it appears that this will run in a Linux guest VM on top of your regular OS[*], I think the "speed" option has already been removed.
As for simplicity, one can't argue with that. Until one leaves the Pareto box and truly need something that doesn't apply to 80% of the population. Like SOCKS5, very large fonts or technical (as in technical, not as in call centre script reading) support.
And security -- well, a VM is, unless paravirtualized, a safe sandbox, so to a certain degree, this is true. (But if you enter your PII in the sandbox, it will be vulnerable inside the sandbox, of course.)

[*]: Judging by Google's vague statements, it doesn't appear to be meant as a bare metal OS, but something you add on top of what you have. ICBW.

Should be an easier platform to write for (4, Funny)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620057)

I wonder if Google will allow native development on Chrome OS? It should be easier to write for than Linux itself is. First off, they have their own windowing system, and that probably means they have done something with sound as well. I wonder if the windowing system is based on a drawing stack that is hardware accelerated? I wonder if you will be able to print?

I really hope they don't force you into writing in Java for it.

And I wonder if they will offer Chrome OS as a VM type of solution that you can buy for Windows?

Novell (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620061)

This is what Novell should have done 15 years ago.

Crapflooding the news again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620069)

It's funny that new things are "made by google", but for crap like the ffmpeg violation they had Daniel Berlin and some other person defend google in person. We'll just have to wait and see if this is just another Picasa, Google Aps, GWT, Android, etc.

Ironic? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620083)

Chrome browser isn't available for linux.

bring it on (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620125)

It's been obvious for ages that this is what they should be doing. I so hope Microsoft suffers badly because of this, and tries to reposition itself as a company which survives on the basis of how good .net development, sql server etc is, and not because they pretty much bludgeon hardware (and software) manufacturers into supporting their ridiculous string-and-sticky-tape operating systems.

Game Over (-1, Troll)

stlthVector (468932) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620129)

I wonder if Microsoft will switch to Chrome OS or OSX?

That's all well and good, but... (1, Funny)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620135)

... Will it run Crysis?

Really, I'm looking for an alternative to Windows for PC gaming, and WINE doesn't cut it. Not by a long way.

Yawn, another distro? (2, Insightful)

KE1LR (206175) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620139)

How is this going to be different from other Linux distros and associated GUI revamp projects that have sprung up promising "we're going to be better than Windows! Really!" over the years?

Re:Yawn, another distro? (1)

Reapman (740286) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620287)

Other then one is being built by one of the largest tech companies on the planet? Besides this wouldn't be the first *nix/BSD based OS succesfully targeted to the consumer market...

Re:Yawn, another distro? (1)

neumayr (819083) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620357)

Hm, market force?

Pixel-level access? (1)

michaelmalak (91262) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620145)

What do they plan to do to grant pixel-level access? Flash? Java? Introduce new capabilities to Javascript?

How do they plan to allow "web applications" to access the local filesystem in a standards-compliant fashion?

Sun had solved all these problems, but Microsoft embraced and extinguished it.

Re:Pixel-level access? (1)

slim (1652) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620355)

What do they plan to do to grant pixel-level access? Flash? Java? Introduce new capabilities to Javascript?

How do they plan to allow "web applications" to access the local filesystem in a standards-compliant fashion?

I think HTML5 is meant to be the solution to all of these - or the HTML5 panel has decided it's not necessary.

Fast web OS needed! (5, Insightful)

thijsh (910751) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620149)

Computers need to get better. People want to get to their email instantly, without wasting time waiting for their computers to boot and browsers to start up. They want their computers to always run as fast as when they first bought them.

They are trying to fill a niche of an OS that boots fast and is basically just a browser. This OS will have a desktop with some online favourites... and that might be just what you need on a NETbook..!
Gmail already looks like a standalone app on Windows with Google Chrome and Offline enabled, you get a nice icon on the desktop. And when you click it it loads in a second, instead of the several minutes my Outlook used to take to even be barely useable. The choice is clear, sluggish native apps are becoming obsolete, and lightweight online apps are becoming more and more reliable. And when you only use these kind of netapps, why bother installing a bloated OS. This might just be the next revolution in the netbook industry.

On a side note: I can't wait until a new OS finally achieves the startup times of the good old trusy Commodore 64. :-)

This recession is a good time to strike (4, Informative)

MarkEst1973 (769601) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620199)

Deep pockets versus deeper pockets. Google's market cap is $125b and Microsoft's is $200b. Not long ago, the gap was larger. Falling PC sales have taken a bite out of Microsoft's revenue. They recently had their first down quarter in their history.

Microsoft still makes 4X the money Google does, though. In 2008, Microsoft earned $17b in net income compared to Google's $4b. Now, $4b is nothing to dismiss, especially when you're using and writing entirely free and open source software, but still, if Google has deep pockets, Microsoft's are even deeper.

See: MSFT [google.com] and GOOG [google.com]

.

Google is probably the only company in the world that can generate excitement about a new OS, and making an open platform will encourage software developers to write apps for it. Hasn't that been one of the big complaints, the lack of software for Linux?

Many have tried taking down Microsoft. All have failed. Perhaps Google is finally the David to slay Microsoft's Goliath. Perhaps not. Exciting times, these are.

Re:This recession is a good time to strike (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620327)

Exciting times, these are.

Thank you, Yoda.

no one provides speed at the low end (1)

fermion (181285) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620209)

The emphasis for the past decade or so has been to deploy increasingly complex OS that can take advantage of the increasingly capable hardware. Both MS Windows and Mac OS X require a microprocessor in the 1.5 GHz range and 2 GB if ram and graphics coprocessor to run well. The problem is that computers from 5 years ago is good enough for the average person, so there is some reluctance to spend the money for these machines. So MS tries to continue the trend with a MS Vista, and people rebelled. Is the average person going to spend a couple hundred dollars more to get a prettier UI when XP seems to work just well. Mac OS X has gotten away with it because Apple are supposed to be expensive, and Apple has spent the past several years optimizing, so it runs well on older hardware. However, OS X for iPhone is not so good, and does not run well on the first iPhone.

So google is doing something different. Build an OS from scratch that does not assume huge available horsepower. This will be the future for the average consumer. I know that everyone will say that the corporate market wants MS, and the employees want a similar machine, but I have a lot of people buy their machine for their use, not to do work. And if the Apps are free, then MS lose their advantage through corporate licensing.

Mcdonaldsoft rival at last! (5, Interesting)

yossarianuk (1402187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620225)

I'm amazed at the amount of negative responses from Linux fans... This is what we have all been waiting for - isn't it ??

No matter how scary google's power is the main things are that:-

1) They are using Linux
2) They WILL make deals with computer manufacturers to get the OS preinstalled.
3) They will opensource the code

The only people who should fear this O.S is MS and existing Linux distros - although the competation and the opensourcing of the code will benifit the entire community.

I'm sure MS will still be the best at saying 'Have a nice day' and flipping CD's.

Google = No privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620265)

Do you really want an advertising agency to have complete access to your OS?
Microsoft would be better, IMHO.

OTOH, google is up front about their use of your personal data. They use it anyway they like for any purpose. good to know.

It is like a fixed wrestling match. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28620271)

The problem, folks, isn't an OS. The problem, folks is
that the venture money whores can control whatever
market they want through their credit dominence.
They are our lords and masters in this sense (ugh).

Google is just as bought and paid for by the money-whores
as any other large corporation. This is just the money-whores
pretending like there is competition. Meanwhile they
can issue stock out of nothing and buy up companies
and put all of the software folks out on the street.

The problem, folks, isn't MS vers GOO, it is
that you can not work on projects and products
without going through the HR mafias.

Companies who make all their money from
Government contracts where they supply 'temp' help
have CEO's that make millions. This is all public
money, folks. Why aren't the people in
washington talking about this inequity?

Google, that was blessed by the large money
is just as anticompetitive as msuck.

Yes, indeedy. (1)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620277)

It is a good day for all of those Chrome kernel hackers out there who have spent years examining, tinkering with and often cursing the name of the Chrome kernel. But it is OK, deep down they know that the Chrome kernel is one of the greatest of all human achievements. Its OK guys, feel free to take a day off and have a cold one, you deserved it. Yes, the Chrome kernel is something that we will tell our wide-eyed grandchildren about.

Great (1)

squoozer (730327) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620301)

I think this is really good news for Linux but I'm going to hold off on breaking out the party hats and balloons for a little while. My main reservation is that it sounds like Google is changing a lot of the basic infrastructure. I'm sure they have studied all aspects of their proposed changes in detail but I'd like to see their reasoning as to why it needs to change. What we have at the moment is not perfect but it's understood and has been shown to work fairly well for many years.

Personally, I would have liked to have seen them team up with Ubuntu and produce a truly world class operating system there. Starting almost from scratch and developing a completely new windowing system seems like a very hard way to enter the market. I suppose though is you are going to re-develop a major portion of a Linux distribution the windowing system would be the place to do it. I've got nothing particularly against X but it feels clunky and stuck in the past.

A (rushed) move to counter bing.com? (2, Interesting)

levicivita (1487751) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620305)

Typically Google tends to announce out of the blue a completed new innovative service or product. Google Chrome for example was announced and released [wikipedia.org] in a matter of 1-2 days. I suspect that because of MSFTs heavy investment and advertising of Bing, Google might feel the need to retaliate. They may have been planning a Google OS for a while - I personally have been expecting this move for years - but they may be rushing to get some attention and to curtail MSFTs momentum.

Taking a while (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620343)

They are saying that it will be another year before being on Consumer goods. That is a long time. Hopefully, they make it available in a developer format before then (compilers, dev tools, etc). While it is targeting the net, they would be wise to have net apps developed before initial release.

Why would I want this? (4, Interesting)

jabjoe (1042100) | more than 5 years ago | (#28620375)

This is a Linux distro that can't run any non-google-SDK software. No X server wipes out being able to run most of the GUI software in the ecosystem. You locked to google. Why would I want this? Technical Linux people aren't going to want it. Normal users won't dare install any thing called an operating system. And everyone, will want to be able to run the apps they want, not only google approved ones. All this pain just for browser? This seems to be built on the dream of a thin client that runs nothing but a browser and all software is web software. It's an old dream, the world only needs five real computers, etc etc. Thing is, we don't want to be controlled, never have. I want to run what I want, how I want thank you very much Mr mainframe. If I'm right about the web app stance, this is a stupid idea come up with by people who think they can see the future but aren't looking at the past. The best google could have done is done yet another standard Linux distro, with X in some form, so they can tap into the existing software ecosystem. They can quality control the software with a repository. That way they can take advantage of much of the existing Unix software. Then they can use their brand, and Linux speed, security, software base, etc etc, to make it big in the OS world.
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