Archive for February, 2008

Google OS: the omega phase of Google’s monopoly?

A Personal Conjecture

OK, I admit that it is no news since I failed to realize that gOS already entered the stage. But the way I envisioned it, Google is going to introduce their full-fledged web-based operating system sooner or later, or maybe officially sponsor gOS. In fact, it has already been promoting the mobile platform for handheld devices. Think about it, internet access is so ubiquitous that I am willing to bet that most of you cannot stand a computer without internet access. Furthermore the mundane tasks you can possibly do on a regular OS you can possibly do them online. Taking into consideration that Google which offers such unified experience of all these applications is already in a dominating position among its peers, the prediction of its monopoly is not far-fetched. Let’s take a look at what it might take to actually deploy the Google OS (most of which you might have already seen in gOS, yet it is still immature and far from state-of-the-art), when we are under the assumption that connection speed is not a concern.

Hardware Requirement

Google OS will probably require pretty much the same as other operating systems except that internet connection is mandatory. But the specification could be significantly lower.

Software Deployment

Rather than DVDs, possibly one CD is enough for Google OS and drivers since Google OS is based on a browser. Additional applications can be installed along the way.

Access Control

Hopefully it will be as simple as your normal Windows XP or OS X account plus “@gmail.com”. Forget “@google.com”, it is for Google employees exclusively.

Mundane Tasks

Google Docs already provide Office alternatives. Gmail, Google Calendar, and a not-so-full-blown To Do gadget serve to replace Outlook. For IM, Google Talk is the way to go and there are also plenty of web-based IM clients. To view PDFs, a browser plug-in is sufficient. Control Panel or System Preference? How does “Google Control Center” sound?

Entertainment

Songs and videos can be organized and played in a YouTube like fashion. Graphic-intensive games can be a problem though.

Multi-Window View

I have been looking for a dual-pane view plug-in for Firefox so if you know any please let me know. In the future you can probably drag tabbed web pages around just like what you do in regular windows-based systems. Worst case scenario is having multiple instances of the browser.

Development

There is already web based SSH client and hopefully a fully functional web based IDE will come out eventually.

Anti-Virus & Anti-Spyware

This will be worried by Google. Since pretty much everything is on the server side.

Backup Scheme

On regular operating systems you work on local data and backup to remote server/drive, while on Google OS you work on server data and backup to local drive.

There you have it, Google OS! There are might be a myriad of possibilities of implementation but they don’t really matter that much, the only question is when.