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It's The End Of The Be As We Know It 216

Posted by Hemos
from the and-i-feel-fine dept.
JRAC writes "Be Inc. has replaced their web site's entire contents with information on the sale of Be to Palm. Stock holders can find all relevant info on the Stock Information page. BeOS 5 Personal Edition is no longer available from the site. Looks like it's time to hit the mirrors. Try ftp.planetmirror.com/pub/beos for files. " The official sale was approved just over a month ago.
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It's The End Of The Be As We Know It

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  • by phaze3000 (204500) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @12:11PM (#2741390) Homepage
    All the thousands of hours that have been poured into this product are now wasted.

    If only Be had released the source under the GPL prior to going under, BeOS could have continued and evovled. As it is it's something of a Neanderthal - an evolutionary dead end.

    • Neanderthal - very apt, considering the most likely reason for their extinction was their lack of ability to adapt.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      That is exactly the last thing Be would/should have done!

      If they had GPL'd their code then they would most likely have declared bankruptcy instead of selling their IP and assets to Palm.
    • by tswinzig (210999) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @12:45PM (#2741477) Journal
      If only Be had released the source under the GPL prior to going under

      Ummm, Be sold BeOS to Palm to gain $11,000,000, to pay off creditors and try to give some money back to the shareholders that poured a shitload of money into BEOS (for example, ME).

      On top of that, for the upteenth million time, BeOS could NOT have been open-sourced, because it contained a lot of code that was not Be's to give away. Obviously they did not feel putting a ton of engineers on the task of preparing the source code to be given away.
      • While you give good reasons why BeOS couldn't be freed, you don't really refute his point: that if it had been freed, the destruction of the platform could have been avoided.

        What we have here is a clear case of freeing it not really being a big advantage to BeOS' owner, but would have been a huge advantage to BeOS users and 3rd party developers. ..Which goes back to the tired old point that Free Software licenses are a very valuable feature that users should look for in the software they use. Maybe that's why my client box gets booted into Linux all the time, while my BeOS 4.5 partition just rots. Linux developers know that they are safe from the platform ever going away, which has resulted in an abundance of software.

    • Having more information on your Web site for investors than for customers (eg product info) is invariably the sign that the company has had the Kiss of Death from the beancounters. Always watch for it as an indicator.

      ///Peter

    • by QuantumG (50515) <qg@biodome.org> on Saturday December 22, 2001 @01:09PM (#2741539) Homepage Journal
      I always found it frightening to talk to an Amiga user. There were lots of reasons but probably one of the biggest was this strange opinion towards software developers. I think the reasoning went something like this: If we pay for anything and everything that gets written for our platform, companies will see it is profitable to write applications for our platform and so we'll get a whole lot of applications. This is sort of the "begging for scraps" mentality that BeOS users felt too. It makes sense in a way, but it has some undesirable effects. Firstly, a lot of fly by night companies jump onto the platform and sell really crappy software at rediculous prices and people buy it, not because it is good or even useful, but to "support the platform". Secondly, the majority of developers for the platform become commercially driven. How can I say this about the Amiga platform you may ask? After all, the Amiga was *the* platform of the enthusiast programmer. I think the gaming industry and to a lesser extent the demo scene sucked all them up by the end and you cant really include them in the equation. In my opinion, the real killer is shareware, and in particular "nagware". Firstly it baits you with the illusion that the software doesn't have to be paid for, and then it switches to a "gimme gimme" ultimatum mode that it cant really back up. Strangely, a lot of people even paid for crappy shareware. Not that I'm saying all shareware is crap, but some of it is and if after 30 days you're not satisfied then you should delete it. But that's not the way it worked. Either people would reinstall it for another 30 days or they would actually pay for it out of misplaced guilt or this idea that if you pay for crap you will get something other than crap in return. I've never heard of anyone demanding a bug fix or an extra feature before they sent in the registration fee, have you? But that's the kind of actions that really could make shareware great, I pay you, you supply the product I actually want. The same goes for Free Software, however, in this case I need not pay the original programmer, I can pay anyone to fix my bugs or add features, but does anyone do it? Anyone? No. Both systems fall short of the mark for delivering a feedback loop that can be controlled by the software consumer to deliver great software to an alternate operating system. Maybe in a few years AtheOS will be trying to woo software developers and we'll see it all happen again, but maybe, just maybe, someone will come up with a way to get good software onto the platform in proportion to the enthusiasm that fans feel towards their alternate OS. I cant wait.
      • by BrookHarty (9119) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @03:02PM (#2741825) Homepage Journal
        I always found it frightening to talk to an Amiga user.

        That is a rather troll statement. Since I was an old Amiga user and most of my friends where amiga users too. About 50% of them migrated to BSD, 25% migrated to MAC, and the other 25% (and myself) migrated to Linux. We all have windows boxes for games, but all the development and server applications run on a non-windows os.

        Most of us had Amiga 1200's or 4000's with more expensive hardware than PC's cost, even today! You could start out with an afordable Amiga 500 for a few hundred bux that could do everything you want, then upgrade to a 4000 and a Toaster and do real production quality work. The toaster is out for PC now and people have migrated along with it.

        Honestly, the shareware I bought for my amiga was better than most commerical software. MagicWB, and other workbench add'ons, and Internet apps where where better quality programs than anything out.

        The only thing I hated about the Amiga, was some cool games where out for dos/windows that I couldnt play. If Linux could run all my software, I would switch to linux as my desktop. But until then, I have 2 computers on my desk. Windows for desktop and games, linux has file/print server, nat gateway and shell box.

        In fact, AMI-TCP for the amiga is what got me addicted to linux, I learned about interfaces(ppp0), tcp, services, ports and the basic unix layout. After setting up AMI-TCP I was able to setup a linux box for dialup rather quickly, and then migrated over to applications. I then got a job for Amiga support at our local ISP, and became a full time sys-admin.

        -

        #Amiga - Spumoni | i've seen poag sightings as far back as '92, but my friend
        bob says I'm seeing things. I tell you, they're real! I
        even have a damn picture...out of focus but you can see the
        bastard running through the forest

      • I'm puzzled by your reference to shareware with respect to Amiga. In the late eighties, when I was programming the Amiga, it was famed for its huge collections of free software that had been placed, source and all, into the public domain by its programmers.

        In fact, the AmigaDOS Replacement Project (ARP) started by Charlie Heath to create C replacements for the BCPL CLI commands of AmigaDOS 1.2, was probably the first open source project undertaken on a consumer-oriented computer.

        Fred Fish and others produced hundreds of compilation disks of mainly freeware applications that were distributed worldwide by snailmail long before USENET and BBS access were common.

      • I've never heard of anyone demanding a bug fix or an extra feature before they sent in the registration fee, have you?

        Yes, as a matter of fact I have.

        I used to have a reasonably popular shareware program that printed cover sheets for faxes. As it was a business-oriented thing I received a surprising (to me) number of "registrations" - cheques in the mail from all sorts of places.

        However, the point here is that I received requests for additional features all the time from both registered users and potential "customers". I vividly recall getting a letter from a law firm stating that they would pay for a certain number of "registered copies" of the program if I added a certain feature. I added the feature, mailed them the new version, and never heard from them again. *grin*
    • Unfortunately, I strongly suspect the source code to BeOS was a major component of what was in fact sold to Palm. I know the general feeling is that Palm was essentially buying the development team, but they're also buying pieces of an operating system that can be reused in a later effort.

      From the standpoint of a user or engineer, I think you're absolutely correct. From the standpoint of a group (i.e., Be's board of directors) trying to sell that code as an asset, though, making it open would have been suicidal.

      There'd also have been significant technical and legal hurdles in opening it: code licensed from other companies would have had to have been removed, replacement free code would have had to have been located and integrated into the source, the new "100% free" code would have had to have undergone unit testing. Then the source would have had to have been cleaned up, the existing documentation would have to have been corrected, completed and more than likely extended with notes on the actual code--otherwise very few people who hadn't worked on it would have the time to parse through it. None of that is insurmountable, but it'd have required a lot of resources assigned to the project, and Be just didn't have many resources available. The only way for that to have happened, practically speaking, would have been for their buyer to agree to fund opening the code--which of course brings us back to the "code as asset" problem described above.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Will you guys ever learn that in a PLC (Publicly listed Company) you can't just give your product away when someone else offers money for it - shareholders can sue all directors for this action.
    • Why the GPL? There are a zillion other licenses out there that are less restrictive. Not that opensourcing BeOS would have been good for BeOS. It might have been good for linux, but not for BeOS.
      • The fact that BeOS wasn't open source is what ultimately killed yet. OSS code is hard to kill. Hell, HURD is still plodding along after all these years! (Put down the pitchforks, that was a joke!) BeOS was stagnated. Be didn't have the money to improve it (and yes, there are tons of things that could have been improved) and nobody had access to the source so they could. If it was open source, at least the OpenBeOS BlueOS guys could have put their efforts into improving BeOS, rather than replicating work that had been done long before. And the "OSS leads to fragmentation" idea is bullshit. Just take a look at FreeBSD! Even Linux (the kernel) is rather tightly unified, given the vast number of sources working on it (kernel devs, SGI, IBM, RedHat, Mandrake, etc).
    • I wouldn't say that all the development hours have been wasted. While you can argue that releasing the source would provide for quicker adoption of Be features by other OSes, the functionality and concepts that Be handled correctly can still be emulated. Now, more than ever, OS developers should be interested in adopting ideas found in Be OS in order to woo Be users looking for a new platform.
    • Why is this modded up as interesting? It should be modded down as stupid! Be contained licensed code from other sources-you can't simply decide one day to open source code that is not yours.
  • Black armband (Score:5, Informative)

    by Therlin (126989) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @12:12PM (#2741392)
    Is it me or is the black armband at the top of the logo new?
  • AAARGH! (Score:2, Informative)

    BeOS... sigh... Such a great OS. Maybe Palm will GPL it, or the OpenBeOS (no URL, sorry: http://openbeos.sourceforge.net, i think) people will finish their clone. But the kernel... maybe it will live on. Maybe. New Apps will be released, but it will eventually fall into an Amiga-Style situation, except that Amiga [amiga.com] is still around. Cross your fingers, and hope for a release of all the source code!
    • http://open-beos.sourceforge.net [sourceforge.net], actually.
    • BeOS... sigh... Such a great OS. Maybe Palm will GPL it, or the OpenBeOS (no URL, sorry: http://openbeos.sourceforge.net, i think) people will finish their clone. But the kernel... maybe it will live on. Maybe. New Apps will be released, but it will eventually fall into an Amiga-Style situation, except that Amiga [amiga.com] is still around. Cross your fingers, and hope for a release of all the source code!

      Not going to happen. But perhaps you might be the first person to start work on an open source clone? Like DOS, sure it had no security and it's limitations, but a lot of people considered it a decent OS. So somebody started a clone, and called (actually, later renamed) it FreeDOS [freedos.net]
  • A few days ago I went to Be's site to check out BeOS (as I had been meaning to for some time now).

    My machine doesn't quite cut it for running Be (which is kinda sad), but it's bizzarre how the site barely seems to acknowledge that such an OS exists (they at least mention it once in their legal page [be.com])
  • To Be, or not to Be? That is the question.

    And the answer, unfortunately, is not to Be. I don't know much about the company, but I played with the OS, and it was pretty nice. I liked the GUI enough that my Afterstep desktop is clearly BeOS-inspired...

  • by JRAC (525882)
    Even though BeOS may not be the most user friendly and feature rich operating system around, it was one of the most advanced OSes of its' time. It's still a great little OS that is excellent for multimedia development. BeOS can play BeOS talking blues.mp3 louder than all my other operating systems :)
    • Of all the operating systems I've tried, BeOS was most
      definitely the most user-friendly. I would be interested to know which operating systems you consider to be even
      more user-friendly.
  • As operating systems have come and gone, one trend has been impossible to avoid. Driver support is next to nonexistent for anything other than Windows, and increasingly Linux on the x86 platform. This doesn't have anything to do with the ethos of open source, nor does it have anything to do with the quality of the operating system. BeOS absolutely kicked ass, it was an incredible attempt at exactly what the industry needs - a clean OS designed for today's desktop needs.

    Unfortunately, this isn't what hardware manufacturers want to support. They want to support Windows and maybe Linux. From a conspiratorial standpoint, you could always think about it as the hardware manufacturers simply sticking to Windows because the power curve keeps increasing so often, new parts are always in vogue. From a more realistic standpoint, it's likely because the manufacturers are broke due to economic conditions, or simply too inexperienced to handle multiplatform development. Can open source volunteers make good drivers? Sure, we've seen this with xfree86, but look at what's happened to X. It's huge, considerably bloated, and with the exception of a very few window managers, ugly and unwieldy.

    The Be kernel and design methodology were excellent, with few major flaws. The file system design was incredible and should be the first thing remembered if anyone does try and develop another operating system, or add support for it to Linux. Unfortunately, I just don't see evidence that the open source community can come together to create the kind of experience we're starting to see from Mac OS X, in regards to the Be effort. You need hardware, you need vendor support, and you need -rapid- development to get momentum going.

    OSX's major flaw so far has been performance, because the BSD/Mach codebase it's built on it simply unwieldy without further refinement. Too much RAM is sucked up by the GUI, which at least manages to be the most functionally attractive one out there. It does what it needs to do, looks good doing it, and actually does mange to innovate, something that hasn't honestly been done since the original MacOS. Say what you will, but the windowing paradigm hasn't evolved much until transparencies became a feature of a commercially successful OS. Apple was able to make this leap by having control over the drivers, and the operating system. As a ten percent underdog, that's not the bad kind of monopoly. Particularly as Apple increasingly, yet slowly, warms up to open source.

    Do I support work on OpenBe and like projects? Sure. Do I expect they'll change the world? Not at all. I -wish- they could, but if a system with as many developers as Linux still fails to impress me as a desktop solution due to clunkiness and the interface nightmare that is X11, I just don't think open source will be able to develop an interface that'll compete for user friendliness.

    Will I use Linux and X11? Yes, of course. But I'm not the average home user, and that's where the battle for vendor support for an OS lies. I hope someday open source will come around and realize this.
    • Its just a numbers game. You don't port code for which it is unlikely that the costs of making the port will not be recovered through sales. Given the number of desktop BeOS users, you would have been insane to port software to that platform.

      Now you can turn that argument around on me and say that a platform isn't worth porting to until there is a set of ported apps existing that make it worthwhile, so someone has to take the risk at some point, with the possible benefits of being first-mover.

      That may be true if it weren't for nearly total sautration in the desktop OS market. Everyone in the US who wants a desktop PC already has one (or two). There is very little grwoth in this market, in fact it is arguably flat. Couple this with the fact that 95% of desktop users use Windows, and that is why you will never get ROI on an alternative desktop system at this point.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      >Too much RAM is sucked up by the GUI

      There is an option to turn on window memory compression. It was left disabled in the release because of concern that it may be the cause of a kernel panic (which was later traced to another cause) but could be enabled manually and should be enabled by default in the next release. Some (limited) info:

      http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/6491
      I can't remember which site I was on that had the good discussion.
    • I do believe the Open Source community is CAPABLE of the feat you describe. I think the biggest weakness of the Open Source and Free Software communities is a lack of business understanding. For example - if you want to come up with something that can take a significant desktop market share (and thereby bootstrap itself to get sufficient application support) you need to start by looking at the hardware manufacturers. This is the first "bootstrapping" problem of developing OS marketshare - supporting the plethora of x86 devices out there, graphics, sound, USB mice, etc. Be did an okay job at this but it was always lagging behind Linux and Windows (obviously). Linux has good device support, and therefore has attracted enough Open Source and commercial app developers to give it sufficient useful apps to be at least minimally functional on the desktop. Of course, as you point out rightfully the desktop capabilities of Linux/X windows are just not sufficiently modern, no matter how nice the toolkit is. Different widget sets, fragmented app appearance and feel, slow redraws (sorry, but look at an app like Mozilla in Windows and X on the same machine and you can't tell me it redraws, responds to user interaction, etc. anywhere near as fast on X).


      What's the solution? Well, entice the hardware manufacturers or make their life easier. For example, make something that can work with X windows drivers (X Acceleration Architecture) or whatever. That way manufacturer support is strengthened for a standard rather than weakened. Trying to come in and force manufacturers to start from scratch is just going to fragment their modest support for the Linux platform and make them think the Open Source community is too much work to support.


      X11 is wrong. It needs to go away. But the alternative needs to be something that can get developer and hardcore community support united behind it. That community support is key to getting apps, which in the end make the win in the desktop market. Users and apps are a chicken and egg problem, but that's the power of Open Source - you don't need millions of dollars to entice app developers with incentives and marketing blitz to get some users. You just need to get the developers and "hardcore" community members to come your way, and the rest will (eventually) follow. And the developers just need a complete set of tools that are convincing enough and will show potential to fulfill their own needs and desires and get a lot of other users using their apps at the same time. Then if you can convince companies that it will be able to reach a broader user base, they will start chugging out commercial apps - this is where Linux broke down, because it just doesn't have the usability to go that next step, limiting it to the power users and developers even now, and attracting modest commercial interest, but not the "snowball" effect something needs to be perceived as a full-fledged equal of Windows.

    • by aussersterne (212916) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @02:11PM (#2741698) Homepage
      X isn't bloated, it's quite lean and can even run quickly on embedded devices. It's extensible enough to support everything that's occurred so far (touchscreen input, 2D and 3D acceleration, full-motion video, etc.) quite well and without losing backward compatibility with existing applications.

      On another note, I am firmly convinced that the reason OSX is slow is Mach. Experience in my department has established that throughput on a loaded server with a microkernel-based OS (MkLinux with a Debian binary set) is a good 30-50% slower than with a non-microkernel OS (monolithic Linux kernel with the *same* binary set). That is not a performance loss to sneeze at, no matter how great microkernels are.

      I personally think the reason Linux is the top competitor to Windows is simple: it's a Unix-like operating system and after 30+ years, no better paradigm for rapidly-deployable general-purpose computing (i.e. everything from office tasks to embedded systems to network serving) than Unix+X has yet been seen, regardless of BeOS, OS/2, Amiga Workbench, ad infinitum.
      • On another note, I am firmly convinced that the reason OSX is slow is Mach. Experience in my department has established that throughput on a loaded server with a microkernel-based OS (MkLinux with a Debian binary set) is a good 30-50% slower than with a non-microkernel OS (monolithic Linux kernel with the *same* binary set). That is not a performance loss to sneeze at, no matter how great microkernels are.

        Then how do you explain the great speed of BeOS?
        • What was being compared was MkLinux (ie. Mach/Linux) and Darwin (ie. Mach/BSD). They are both designed by Apple and both use Mach. Mach has been known to be a slow and crappy microkernel implementation, but that doesn't seem to have impacted it's popularity very much.

          On the other hand, BeOS uses its own microkernel, designed from the ground up for speed. This would be similar to other microkernel based OS's like NT and QNX (IIRC). At least for BeOS and QNX, nobody complains about kernel speed.

    • Let's take a look, see...
      As operating systems have come and gone, one trend has been impossible to avoid. Driver support is next to nonexistent for anything other than Windows, and increasingly Linux on the x86 platform.
      Are you talking about Windows 3.11 drivers? DOS drivers? Win95 drivers? Win98 drivers? WinNT drivers? WinXP drivers? And what about Netware drivers? OS/2 drivers? Arguably success has less to do with driver availability than with being a monopolist.

      This doesn't have anything to do with the ethos of open source, nor does it have anything to do with the quality of the operating system. BeOS absolutely kicked ass, it was an incredible attempt at exactly what the industry needs - a clean OS designed for today's desktop needs.
      Designed for today's desktop needs? BeOS? The OS that couldn't print? Perhaps there was a window between 1995 and 1998 where BeOS might have fit in. But compared to NT4 and Linux it simply did not have that much to offer.

      Unfortunately, this isn't what hardware manufacturers want to support. They want to support Windows and maybe Linux. From a conspiratorial standpoint, you could always think about it as the hardware manufacturers simply sticking to Windows because the power curve keeps increasing so often, new parts are always in vogue. From a more realistic standpoint, it's likely because the manufacturers are broke due to economic conditions, or simply too inexperienced to handle multiplatform development. Can open source volunteers make good drivers? Sure, we've seen this with xfree86, but look at what's happened to X. It's huge, considerably bloated, and with the exception of a very few window managers, ugly and unwieldy.
      So what are you saying? That X is considerably bloated, ugly and unwieldy because of the efforts of open source volunteers? And compared to what? Can you name any real-world OS that isn't "bloated" in this sense? I mean in the next paragraph you go on about how "[unwieldy] the BSD/Mach codebase" of OS X is and that the GUI sucks up too much RAM. So that leaves, what? Are you saying Windows is not bloated?

      What's "bloated" mean to you, anyway? I mean you throw off all these non-starters and ramble yourselves a +3 Interesting, so it's just because I'm jealous that I'm asking.

      Will I use Linux and X11? Yes, of course. But I'm not the average home user, and that's where the battle for vendor support for an OS lies. I hope someday open source will come around and realize this.
      Open source is all about you coming around and realizing something, pal.
      • By driver support, I mean hardware drivers. Digital cameras, scanners, printers, webcams, video cards, sound cards, ethernet cards, etc. I think most people understood that one pretty well.

        As to Be not being able to print, see above. Being a monopolist has gotten Microsoft where they are. It fucking sucks, but they're there. They won, for now. It doesn't always have to stay that way. Today's desktop needs are a windowing system that produces no delay for the users perception, can do full motion video without any glitches, and has an open API where people can mess with it without breaking anything. X almost fits the last of these, and I'll admit to not having seen much FMV on X myself due to crappy video cards (AKA ones without decent X drivers) in the Linux machines I've used. People say X is snappy on embedded devices, well, that's because they're able to take out the bloat that makes it run on so much x86 hardware, by limiting it to one system.

        And I'm saying X is bloated, unwieldy and ugly simply because it was designed by committee. It doesn't matter if it's a committee of paid employees, or by volunteers. The design concepts for X are good - for developers. And by bloat, I mean it's too large and too difficult to get running. Do you know how much I had to download to get X running on my OSX machine? Seventy megs, between the server source and the base source with a window manager. SEVENTY MEGS. Of source. My 500Mhz machine spent three hours compiling. In contrast, Quake 2's source supposedly can fit on a floppy. Which would you rather dive into to port and modify?

        People keep saying open source is about reclaiming the promise of computer technology, from what I read. Is it a matter of open source trying to bring people who like the technology around to their mindset, or is it a matter of wanting to revolutionize computers for everyone? You can't have it both ways. Look at what's happened so far. Efforts to build a simple interface to Linux have gone broke (Nautilus) or simply never differentiate themselves from the other alternatives enough to gain any kind of momentum (Gnome, KDE) that lets people develop for a standard interface.

        I compare X bloated to what it could be. It's no worse than Microsoft in the bloat department, but it sure has a long way to go to even reach Windows in the usability area. I'm not defending Microsoft here, but what I do intend to get across is that some kind of decision has to be made among open source developers as to just what the main goal is. Choose one.

        Beat Microsoft
        Ignore Microsoft

        If you choose to ignore Microsoft, then don't complain about them, and don't listen to me.

        It you decide you want to try and beat Microsoft, then take the advice that myself and many, many others have. Don't just complain that I'm dissing open source projects, prove me wrong by giving me something better than I think I can see.

        My dream OS:

        A Linux style kernel, Be's file system, *nix memory management and security, native 3D-capable desktop (Let's find out how to ditch the 2D "window" paradigm), development tools tightly integrated with the system (Out of the box, I want an IDE on my programs list.) and an open source license.

        Can this be done with Linux? Yes. Can it be done with X and the current interface options? No. No, I don't think so.

        Prove me wrong.
        • You do realize that 70 mb you downloaded contained the following:

          1) A TON of fonts.
          2) A TON of libraries
          3) A TON of stuff that isn't actually used on OSX. Read the Install file, it tells you what you need.

          Just because your stupid doesn't mean X is bloated. Oh, and your comparing it to ONE implementation of X too.
        • A 3D-capable desktop is infeasible, and I'll tell you why right now. (This is OT as high hell, but oh well..)

          Depth perception. You look at your current desktop, and everything is using a "pieces of paper" paradigm. This is an easy to understand paradigm, and there's a reason; your brain can easily perceive and interpret it. Everything that you see can easily be transformed into a 2D image, which is how the brain processes everything it sees.

          3D screws this up, because now you have to worry about depth as well; is something hiding under that pile? How big is it? Is it far away or close-up? This is hard to tell, from your brain's point of view, without further clues. To give these 3D depth cues, your brain needs a different image for each eye.

          So fine, let's imagine that 3D display surfaces are ubiquitous, so we can rely on these depth queues. Now we have a new problem; visual distraction. Do an experiment for me. Sit down at your desk, and carefully place a piece of paper on the desk vertically in front of you. This is now the document you'll be working on. Now try and sit in such a way that you can see all of the paper, read it, be able to work on it, and still not be distracted by the depth of the desk around you, the wall in front of you, etc. (If you have your desk against a wall, this probably isn't too hard, because the wall isn't very far away; you'll have to pick a place with a far depth behind it.)

          What you'll find is you're tending to lean in closer to the paper so you don't see as much of what's around you. This suggests that this is the best way to keep from being distracted in this manner.. but this is essentially the same as a maximized window, correct? So what added benefit does our 3D give us?

          Now lets say you want to jump to another window quickly; how would you do this? Well, we'd like to take the visual hint from the Windows taskbar here, to create some sort of list of stuff opened. How would this be represented? What we want; all apps to be visible all the time (otherwise it's no better than the win 3.1 alt-tab screen) and a quick way of accessing them. ... Can you come up with anything that doesn't sound like the taskbars of the 2D desktop of today?

          Now let's get back to the desktop paradigm. Simply put, there are two ways you could set this up; a room paradigm, where you move around and look at/interact with stuff, or a box/pit paradigm.

          The room paradigm is nice, because you can make your desktop as big as you want and then wander around it. The downside, though, is that you've again increased the complexity, adding "travel time" to get from one place to another. Of course, one could always bookmark certain 3D locations, but I'd consider this to be a bit of a kludge; I shouldn't need to bookmark common locations in my desktop just to get work done.

          The box/pit idea's a bit cleaner, in that it's a lot easier to understand for someone just getting started. You don't need to worry about moving around; you're staring into your monitor, and it's kind of like a pit that goes in from the screen. You can use a 3D pointing device to move around stuff inside the pit, and pull it to the front. The downside to this is that you're essentially .. well ... it's kind of reminiscient of your current desktop, don't you think?

          The last big strike against a 3D desktop is the input device. The mouse is a great input device for moving around in 2D, but once we hit 3D, we have problems. For instance, take the case of moving something, using the room paradigm. How do we grab stuff and move it? Well, we could take a page from System Shock, and have an inventory, and grab stuff, move to destination, and drop it. But does this seem quicker to you than *click* drag and *unclick* drop? Plus the additionaly requirement of people needing to know how to play a 3D shooter to be able to get around..

          Likewise, with the pit paradigm, we're faced with another task; we can see everywhere in the pit, but how do we specify how deep to put something? We find that we can no longer do this easily with a mouse, unless we use the wheel for depth. (And we all know how precise the mouse wheel is.) We can also rule out 3D position-based input devices; can you imagine holding your hands steady for hours without support, while working at your computer? (Talk about unergonomic.)

          Anyways, you can see why I'm saying true 3D desktops are unfeasible. Sure, they look nice and everything, but where's the speed advantage? How do they make the user's life easier? The only 3D interfaces I've seen are ButtonFly [fsu.edu] and the one from Jurassic Park. In the former, the menus look cool, but they don't provide any speed advantage. Likewise in the latter example; the cast in the movie almost get eaten by the raptors 'cause the interface impeded their ability to easily/quickly find and activate the locks. Do you want to be eaten by raptors? ; )

          Yes, 3D is cool, but I don't think I'd want it for my desktop. Now if the 3D were only being used for the hardware acceleration of the resizing, etc., that I can understand. But as a native environment for the desktop... no, I wouldn't like that one bit.
      • Designed for today's desktop needs? BeOS? The OS that couldn't print? Perhaps there was a window between 1995 and 1998 where BeOS might have fit in. But compared to NT4
        and Linux it simply did not have that much to offer.


        Couldn't print? Not much to offer? BeOS may not have the best printing scheme, but it does work. As for not having modern features; the attribute based file system offers many features for many users; and I for one believe that any user exposed to it; even simple ones, would learn to make great use of it. Let's also not forget that BeOS has the best SMP implementation out of any O/S I've seen out there.
        • Couldn't print? Not much to offer? BeOS may not have the best printing scheme, but it does work.
          Okay, sure, but people are not going to dump their Macs for it.
          the attribute based file system offers many features for many users;
          So does MacOS HFS. As the Mac users will attest, one of the great features of not having a flat-file file system is that you have to be really careful transferring your files onto other systems, or they'll break.
          Let's also not forget that BeOS has the best SMP implementation out of any O/S I've seen out there.
          Yah, maybe, could be. But to do what?
          • 1) HFS doesn't have true attributes. It has two forks.
            2) HFS sucks. Its more advanced than FAT32, true, but Giampalo was right when he called HFS the "oddball cousin" of the filesystem world.
          • So does MacOS HFS. As the Mac users will attest, one of the great features of not having a flat-file file system is that you have to be really careful transferring your files onto other systems, or they'll break. User level attributes, not a simple reasource fork. BeOS attibutes did system level things like mimetypes and icons, but also whatever the user/developer wanted for efficient data storage. You can read about impressive examples of this usage regarding everything from email and bookmarks to mp3 collections. Yah, maybe, could be. But to do what? Well it helps with one of the most efficient multitasking setups I've encountered ( there's no busy cursor for a reason ), and the best use of multiple processors, all apps gaining near 100% in performance.
    • Driver support is next to nonexistent for anything other than Windows, and increasingly Linux on the x86 platform.

      If the OS comes with the computer there is no driver support issue. Also the consumer does not have to learn about partitioning drives and boot loaders, etc... And if the OS is on the computers the develops will have a market for their apps.

      Microsoft has illegally prevented computer manufacturers from installing other OSes on their computers alongside Windows. THIS is why Linux and BeOS are not getting the necessary app development to flourish.

    • OSX's major flaw so far has been performance, because the BSD/Mach codebase it's built on it simply unwieldy without further refinement.

      Gah. No. OSX has performance issues, yes, but they have zilch to do with Mach/BSD. That codebase is over 15 years old, and is quite mature and refined, thank you.

      If you don't believe me on this, grab a PPC mac somewhere, install LinuxPPC and Darwin (the Mach/BSD core of OSX) on it in turn, and time some test compiles in console mode. Linux will win, but the margin will be small and consistant.

      OSX's performance issues are all several layers up, in the presentation and windowing systems. Apple scrapped NeXT's old Display Postscript windowing system to build Quartz and Aqua from scratch, and that is one huge heap of immature, unoptimized, and feature-iffic code there. Additionally, a quick look at "top" on most OSX boxes will show you that an inhuman amount of memory and cpu slices are being eaten by the "TrueBlue" OS9 emulation process, aka "Classic."

      The first problem will be resolved as the Quartz codebase matures and as newer video drivers start to offload the work onto the cards. The second problem will go away as people find fewer and fewer reasons to run Classic apps.
      • Re:OSX Performance (Score:3, Informative)

        by be-fan (61476)
        Gah. No. OSX has performance issues, yes, but they have zilch to do with Mach/BSD. That codebase is over 15 years old, and is quite mature and refined, thank you.
        >>>>>
        You miss an important distinction. OSX is based on old code. Mach was never very good as a microkernel to begin with, and it hasn't been heavily updated in years. FreeBSD on the other hand, is very mature, just like Mach, but has had the benifet of years of massaging in the intervening years. Apple really was out to lunch when it decided to use a Mach/BSD combo. First, it has no real benifets, since the monolithic system server eats any potential gains in stability. Worse, it loses performance for being based on a microkernel. What would have made much more sense for Apple would have been to base OS-X on top of FreeBSD. They would have gotten a much better core OS, the FreeBSD guys would have gotten access to nifty things like XML configuration, and Apple wouldn't have to be in the core OS business.
        • Re:OSX Performance (Score:3, Informative)

          by Doktor Memory (237313)
          Mach was never very good as a microkernel to begin with

          Would you care to quantify that statement? I know that it's quite fashionable in this forum to parrot Linus Torvalds' blithe dismissal of Mach, but nobody ever seems interested in backing it up with any hard data.

          and it hasn't been heavily updated in years. FreeBSD on the other hand, is very mature, just like Mach, but has had the benifet of years of massaging in the intervening years.

          What an odd and incorrect statement. I don't really know where to begin. Do you really think that during the entire time that Mach was being used as the core of various incarnations of NeXTstep (on both 680x0 and ia32), MkLinux (on PPC, ia32 and PA-RISC) and MacOS X, not to mention countless other projects, that it was not "massaged" and updated significantly?

          Apple really was out to lunch when it decided to use a Mach/BSD combo

          You dance with who brought you. OSX is based on NeXTstep, and NeXTstep was built on the Mach/BSD core. That codebase was stable, mature, and proven to be portable. They had, and have, no sane reason to rip it out.

          First, it has no real benifets, since the monolithic system server eats any potential gains in stability.

          More mindless parroting of the party line. Mach/BSD is in no way unstable, and stability is not the only benefit. Think "portability, modularity, features and elegance."

          Worse, it loses performance for being based on a microkernel.

          So everyone keeps saying, but nobody seems willing to actually back up that assertion with anything other than vague handwaving. (Please, don't waste anybody's time by reminding us how much faster BeOS could draw windows on the screen. We know Quartz is slow. It's just not relevant to this discussion.)

          hat would have made much more sense for Apple would have been to base OS-X on top of FreeBSD.

          Apple had a deadline to meet for transmuting NeXTstep into OSX, and a market requirement to support their own SMP systems. Attempting to backport the entirety of OpenStep onto FreeBSD would have actively hindered both of those goals, while offering few tangible benefits in return. (Nevermind the unanswered question of just how long a port of FreeBSD to the Mac/PPC platform would take.)

          Instead, they did the smart thing: they hired Jordan Hubbard, and ported many of FreeBSD's userland improvements back to the Mach/BSD codebase, and re-released that as Darwin. Everybody won.

          and Apple wouldn't have to be in the core OS business.

          Why on earth wouldn't they want to be?
          • Would you care to quantify that statement? I know that it's quite fashionable in this forum to parrot Linus Torvalds' blithe dismissal of Mach, but nobody ever seems interested in backing it up with any hard data.
            >>>>>>>>
            Read the GNU/HURD mailing lists about people wanting to switch HURD over to L4 because Mach just wasn't cutting it.

            What an odd and incorrect statement. I don't really know where to begin. Do you really think that during the entire time that Mach was being used as the core of various incarnations of NeXTstep (on both 680x0 and ia32), MkLinux (on PPC, ia32 and PA-RISC) and MacOS X, not to mention countless other projects, that it was not "massaged" and updated significantly?
            >>>>>>>
            Tons of projects, yes. Huge leaps in capability? No. Take a look at all of the nifty stuff FreeBSD has been doing in the meantime. The VM subsystem has significantly overhauled (read Cranor's UVM paper and Matt Dillon's articles for info) as has the swap system and (with FreeBSD 5.x) the threading model and SMP system. Advances of that magnitude just haven't been made on Mach, plain and simple.

            You dance with who brought you. OSX is based on NeXTstep, and NeXTstep was built on the Mach/BSD core. That codebase was stable, mature, and proven to be portable. They had, and have, no sane reason to rip it out.
            >>>>>>>>>>
            Umm, Apple ended up rewriting a lot of the upper-level software anyway. I would guess that porting to FreeBSD (given that both Mach/BSD and FreeBSD have the same API) wouldn't have cost very much time.

            More mindless parroting of theparty line. Mach/BSD is in no way unstable, and stability is not the only benefit. Think "portability, modularity, features and elegance."
            >>>>>>>>>>
            1) Portability: Do you really think that Mach/BSD is more portable than any monolithic kernel, like Linux or NetBSD? Besides, Apple is the one who is making OS-X uniplatform!
            2) Modularity: You call a monolithic system server moduler? Multi-servers are moduler. They're a great use of some of the inherent advantages of microkernels. Monoservers are just stupid.
            3) Elegant: How? You take a basterdize the microkernel concept by sticking a monolithic system server on top of it!

            So everyone keeps saying, but nobody seems willing to actually back up that assertion with anything other than vague handwaving.
            >>>>>>>>>
            Umm, just think this through. Say I want to read a byte from a device. Which is going to be faster, sending a message to the system server (which involves one system call to send the message, a slow context switch to change to the system server, code to process the message, another system call to send another message, and another context switch to change to the calling process), or invoking a single system call which involves no context switches?

            As for porting, please remember that they ended up porting a good deal of FreeBSD 3.2 to Mach anyway.
  • I've only recently jumped on the bandwagon with BeOS, but I'm already Extremely impressed with the responsiveness, feel, and power of the Operating System.

    I was looking forward to some kind of os updates... with the right supporting programs, this OS could be what makes me switch full time from Wi...er...that other OS...

    This is absolutely fantastic...I mean...I've been using and experimenting with computers since I was 13 years old...(so...cripes...18 years???Yeesh...) And this new (to me, at least) os is making me feel like a little kid again...when hardware wasn't cheap, and coding HAD to be tailored to be fast...It's very apparent that a LOT of hard work and love went into crafting this...

    Palm? Are you listening? PLEASE don't kill this... Extend it. Release it. Open Source it...Continue it...ANYTHING but kill it...

    And..um...Yeah...it's pretty keen...
    • Buy some shares of Palm stock, then go to the stockholders meeting and demand to know why they would refuse to license BeOS to a publisher, and receive checks every 3 months. There might even be a shareholder lawsuit in that.
      • >There might even be a shareholder lawsuit in
        >that.


        Give it up. The sanctions against you for filing that *frivolous* and bad faith suit won't put enough into Be's/Palm's cofferes to bring the OS back.


        The bare statement, "We believe that the long term prospects are better if we don't do that" are sufficient to win the cas. It's called the "business judgment rule."


        Of course, the case would never get that far before being dismissed with sanctions . . .


        hawk, esq.

        • I meant that shareholders of Palm stick deserve to know why the company would turn down the chance to license BeOS to an outside publisher.

          That's about as stupid a decision as cutting off all your revenue to pursue internet appliances was for Be.
          • And I mean that filing a lawsuit to do that would be an abuse of the legal system and subect to serious sanctions.


            If they have *any* expectation of using *any* of the technology in the future, it is far from obvious that licensing it is in the best interests of the store.


            hawk, esq.

  • Is there anyway to get the PPC version of BeOS R4 anymore? The one that ran on the original dual processor BeBox, and the PCI series of 604 PowerMacs.

    It's a shame, 'cuz I was just thinking about installing R4 on my old PowerMac 7500/604... I was really looking forward to some OpenGL red spinning teapot action.

    ~Jeff
  • In their opening statement, notice how "Customers" comes a dead last behind "Shareholders" and "Partners" in who they value?

    Perhaps if you value your customers more, you wont run into these sort of problems.
    • When you're a couple of million bucks in debt with creditors breathing down your neck, let's see who you value.

      Hm should we pacify the people who want our product GPL'ed, or the guys at Palm who just gave us $11 million.

      I think any good-will gestures towards BeOS users are out of their hands at the moment. Palm probably has exclusive rights to all the core components of the OS.
  • Palm's Plans (Score:4, Redundant)

    by tswinzig (210999) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @12:58PM (#2741505) Journal
    Here is an interview [sdtimes.com] with David Nagel discussing some of Palm's plans for the Be assets. This second story [osopinion.com] is from OSOpinion, and is more speculation about a BeOS based 32-bit OS for Palm due in 2002.

    Found these links through BeGroovy [begroovy.com].
  • Be will be missed. I have BeOS R5 on my old IBM ThinkPad (Pentium 133/32 megs RAM) and it flies. It is rock solid and reads my PCMCIA Ethernet Card without drivers. If you look at BeBits.com, you'll see new apps are being released for BeOS all the time. Be will live on. I love using AbiWord on it and transfering those files seemlessly to my Gnu-Darwin box.
  • Not done yet... (Score:2, Informative)

    by mlknowle (175506)
    BeOS might not be done yet - the Palm - OS version aside, I have heard rumors that Palm is looking to build a sub-pc notebook (i.e., WinCE league) using BeOS, which is a lot closer to the PC operating system than somthing which runs on an 8mb Palm device.

    Even if the source isn't released, any work that is done commercially to keep the code alive is better than what has happened to date.
  • Hopefully (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Hopefully Linux will be next...
    • Be careful...it just might be.

      Think about it: the U.S. government is unwilling to do a damned thing to Microsoft, so Microsoft can make as many exclusive deals with hardware manufacturers as it wants and do so with impunity.

      Imagine how long Linux would remain even remotely competitive if it couldn't run on any modern commodity hardware...

  • For those who are interested in the possibility of the BeOS being continued, check out BeUnited.org [beunited.org]. Originally "a place to find and support teams for the development of high quality BeOS software", they are now "leading an initiative concerned with the licensing of the BeOS from Palm, Inc. and its subsequent upgrading, development and professional marketing on a global scale".

    If they can be successful in licensing the OS from Palm, then the BeOS can continue. They currently have 136 new products or projects in their developer survey. Head over to the site to see how you can help!

    Also, for those that don't know, there are several other really good sites dedicated to the BeOS:

    The "sourceForge" of the BeOS: BeBits.com [bebits.com].

    News and a discussion forum: BeGroovy.com [begroovy.com].

    Another news site: BeNews.com [benews.com].

    And, of course, the site that sells BeOS 5 Pro, and the Office Suite (available for Windows, too!) that goes along with it: Gobe.com [gobe.com].
  • Must suck for all those people who baught Be at it's IPO price of $6.
    • I betcha the people who bought RedHat at its peak of $140 aren't all that happy either.
      The moral of the story: only stupid people hang on to dotcom stock for that long. The people who bought Be stock at IPO have long since sold it, probably at a profit, too. It's the people who bought during the downward slide of the last year or sothat are screwed.
    • >Must suck for all those people who baught Be at it's IPO price of $6.


      especially consideing the, what, $200 million that they turned down from apple five years ago . . . with the delusion they were worth twice that . . .


      hawk

  • by HiyaPower (131263) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @02:29PM (#2741746)
    Trouble with most folks on this forum (including myself) is that we often forget about the "good enough" effect. That is for the average user, elegance doesn't matter. All they care about is that it is "good enough" to do some simple things and that it comes pre-installed on their computer. As horrid as Windoze is, it is "good enough" for most folks. In the company that I worked for, the average mentality maxed out at less than being able to write an excel macro. Terabyte file systems, etc. that Be had to offer were wasted on these folks. It was good enough that they could click on their mail (which as virus pre-filtered for them), and run the odd pre-canned application. Any of the elegance that most of us like was totally lost on them. It was good enough that it came on the machine complements of Michael Dell.


    Mark Twain went broke investing in the best linotype machine on the face of the earth. It could do anything and everything. However, people wanted the machine that was easier to get and "good enough".

    • I hear ya. The same thing goes for everything else in the world. Just think of cars... people buy Geo Metros. No one thinks it is a really great car. It is just good enough. Think of the audio guys. They spend thousands on their stereos and speakers and cabinets, etc... I don't give a crap about all that fanciness... I just want something decent to listen to my music on. Truth is, unless you are an afficionado of a particular hobby or whatever you want to call it, "good enough" is all you want...
  • I d/l'ed Beos litrally last night - the ftp site was still up, not a whiff of closing down on the site.
  • RIP BeOS (Score:1, Insightful)

    by CowboyNea1 (203755)
    Truly sad.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 22, 2001 @03:18PM (#2741863)
    Part of the failure of Be is due to Jean-Louis Gassee's hubris. This man had an inflated sense of self-importance that would even make Steve Jobs blush. If he had realized what his company was really worth he would have taken the $100 million offered by Apple in '96. At that time -- even though not fully developed -- BeOS ran rings around the original Mac OS on PowerPC hardware. It would have also allowed the new Mac OS to be brought to market much faster. Instead he wanted much more, Apple went with NeXT, and now Be is trying to satisfy creditors and shareholders with the paltry sum they received from Palm.

    While talking about alternative futures it's interesting to think about what would have happened had Apple used the NT kernel instead of NeXT or Be. According to Gil Amelio, Gates was on the phone almost every day trying to convince him that NT was the best route. Amelio's book [amazon.com] is an interesting read for this very subject and gives some insight as to why Apple went with NeXT instead of Be or Microsoft.


  • Well, crap.

    This is a sad moment for me. I remember being thrilled upon first discovering BeOS. Multi-threaded down to the kernel level. I could at last put something on my Mac that would give me a 'modern' OS. Started learning how to code for it. They tried. Guess it's like making decisions in a maze. Sometimes you run out of options and get stuck.
  • So, goodbye Be! I will miss you!


    BeOS will still run on my computer, I don't have any plans of switching over to a different platform at the moment. See, the sad thing is not that further BeOS development is halted and we will probably see it lose more and more of its users and developers until it's really gone; no, I could live with that. If there was a replacement. It was no problem for me to sell my Amiga, because I saw a new future: BeOS, A system in the same spirit, small footprint, exceptional performance and a straightforward architecture so you could tell what every file was for. Try this with any other current system, you will fail.

    But now it's hard for me to leave the BeOS platform: I don't see anything replacing it, there is no successor. The current GNU/Linux distributions (and I still don't like the term GNU/Linux as it does not inlcude the non-GPL'd XFree86) are by far too complicated in their architecture and there is no common API with a documentation to it like the BeBook. Developing a full-blown application is a PITA, as you have to look in dozens of places to find all the information you want. Windows XP is as well incredibly bloated compared to BeOS and is behind in the responsiveness and although it is not based on the DOS derivates it still carries lots of legacy stuff in its API. MacOS X comes closer, but it needs some optimization to get near BeOS.

    Don't get me wrong, all of the systems mentioned abover are in most parts good, modern operating systems and I use all of them almost daily. But whoever proposes one of them as a replacement for the BeOS experience obviously never really used BeOS, or wrote a program on it. You can read many reports in BeOS forums from people who tried Mandrake or Windows but just don't get the joy in computing they had with BeOS. And the article from Scot Hacker on OSNews, it's filled with disappointment between the lines. From his past articles on BeOS you can tell that Scot was a real fan of the the BFS and BeOS' filetyping and he surely misses it in MacOS X as much as I do.


    So technically our situation ain't different as it was at the release of BeOS R5: The BeOS is still as exciting as it was and it still offers the same power and performance as it did. That's why I will continue using it. When will I stop? As soon as I find some other system that creates the same kind of fascination in me. Until then, all other systems will be tools to get work done, but not a fun hobby as BeOS is.

    • You could try Atheos [atheos.cx]. It's not a BeOS clone, but is quite like a combination of it and AmigaOS, and is under rapid development. It's also under the GPL. It's aiming for the market of people who don't want to fiddle to get the OS the way they want it. The OS has an integrated GUI/desktop, instead of the Linux style of Kernel-Usermode-XFree86-WindowManager. It's mostly POSIX compliant, and has many Linux apps ported already. It might be just what you're looking for.
  • by be-fan (61476)
    My machine has been all Linux for several months now. Its not as bad as I thought it was going to be, but its not great either. After tons customization (XFS, pre-kernels, preemptive + lock breaking patches, custom compilations, f**king with fonts for days on end, etc) Linux feels almost as fast as Win2K. Most of the time, anyway. All my Galeon windows still freeze up for several second at a time while one of them is loading /. (I miss multithreading), AbiWord still has butt-ugly non AA fonts, XMMS still sometimes skips when I'm doing multiple compiles at the same time, GTK+ apps still dump on me at totally random moments, Sylpheed won't copy and paste into gedit, and the GNOME file panal is still as braindead as ever. Its not all bad, however. Compiles run faster than they used to. Urpmi is truely nifty. Sylpheed is a good mail client, and XFS is an awesome filesystem. I finally have good compile tools (ICC), and I've found the power of 'vi' because I've been forced (thanks /etc!) to use it so much. Still, its not BeOS. This is depressing...
    • I use KDE, and have found that Konqueror never freezes while loading pages. The AA works very nicely too. If you want something closer to BeOS, you may like to try Atheos [atheos.cx].
      • by be-fan (61476)
        Unfortunately, KDE has the small problem that everything takes days to load. Its far more polished than GTK+/GNOME, but damn is it slow. Funny thing. I was using Windows XP the other day at Circuit City. I was amazed how speedy it was. Considering how badly configured store-display machines are, this did not say much for KDE...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Isn't it funny. If all the resources of one community sacrificed for the other we'd have one superior OS to stand up to the monopoly.

    It looks like everything will stay splintered. One OS down, another to go, says Redmond.

    OS X is trying to do it but too many people won't support it for that "extra" couple hundred bucks of premium and superior hardware.
  • Here we go again.... (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    With the "it coulda been a contender if it was only open source." Excuse me but the reason be was so great is because it wasn't open source but the concerted effort of a few brilliant developers, not the fragmented bloatware byproduct of a million amatuer code monkeys like your average linux distro. I love open source and all, but it's not a good model to build a fast, efficient and stable operating system like BeOS. I like to enjoy using my computer, not spend hours of my time trying to get the latest, slow-as-hell version of X running so I can finally have support for something that was included in every other OS from the get go. Seriously people, you berate microsoft and all, but the last time I checked the average Suse or Mandrake install is larger than my Win2000 install, and 5 or 6 times that of an average Beos install.

    So R.I.P BeOS, the only operating system that was ever a joy to use. I would pay serious money for any linux distro that could still run smoothly while playing 4 videos, a music CD, and rip a track from that CD at the same time while compiling the latest BeShare source with mods in the background. Alas....my mandrake partition still has problems crashing when I try to play solitaire.
  • ..BeOS will Be the only OS that can get my nipples hard for a long, long time.

    No matter how good another OS is, now matter how outdated BeOS will become, to me nothing will ever Be as good. No OS will ever Be as sexy, as much fun to use. (I'm sorry is all this writing Be with a capital letter becoming annoying?). I guess I'm a zealot.

    Linux lacks any trace of cohesion and X is too slow, especially after Be's mega-responsive-fully-multithreaded goodness. I simply can't stand KDE and Gnome, not after using Be's oh-so-close-to-perfection GUI. Windows is too slow, bloated and insecure. Moreover, I oppose Microsoft on principle grounds. Mac hardware is too expensive and OSX probably too slow.

    ..Will I ever fall in love again?
  • Mirrors (Score:4, Informative)

    by MathJMendl (144298) on Saturday December 22, 2001 @06:29PM (#2742269) Homepage
    Here are a couple of good mirrors for BeOS 5.01 I noticed:

    http://ftp.pcworld.com/pub/system/other/beospe.exe [pcworld.com]

    ftp://ftp.kando.hu/.3/beos/beos/BeOS5-PersonalEdit ion.exe [kando.hu]
  • mr. Gates will be smiling again.
  • BeOS isn't dead yet. The community is one of the friendliest i've ever been associated with and apps and drivers are constantly being released on BeBits

    BeBits [bebits.com]


    BeUnited [beunited.org]is heading up the initiative to license BeOS from Palm and if that doesn't succeed then OpenBeOS will be the primary focus of the BeOS developer community.


    Once you've tried BeOS it's very difficult to go back to another OS. Yes i use Linux on one of my servers and am very happy with it, but i have two other PCs running BeOS and an old PowerPC running MacOS (slow slow slow).


    BeOS is my OS of choice. I can connect to Sybase or MS SQL Server databases, PostgreSQL databases, run Apache etc etc etc.


    Checkout BeOS, BeBits and BeGroovy. And checkout exactly what BeOS can do for you.

    cheers

    peter

  • I'd like to give that a try now that the proceeds for its sale won't be going anywhere.

    Anyone know of a mirror that has it? (the PRO edition, not the personal edition).

    Thanks.
  • by Suppafly (179830)
    Seems like some of the stockholders and investors would sue Be Inc. for failing to follow thru with due diligence or something for all of the bad business decisions they made along the line.

"Religion is something left over from the infancy of our intelligence, it will fade away as we adopt reason and science as our guidelines." -- Bertrand Russell

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