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Blake Ross Working on Parakey Web OS 150

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the web-2-point-oh-no dept.
prostoalex writes "IEEE Spectrum is running an article on Blake Ross, creator of Firefox, and his new project called Parakey, which will bridge the gap between Web and desktop operating system. From the article: 'As he describes it, from a user's point of view, Parakey is "a Web operating system that can do everything an OS can do." Translation: it makes it really easy to store your stuff and share it with the world. Most or all of Parakey will be open source, under a license similar to Firefox's. There are differences between the two projects, however. Although Ross plans to incorporate the talents and passions of the free-software community, he's building Parakey around a for-profit business model. And he's leading the charge with a simple battle cry: "One interface, not two!"'"
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Blake Ross Working on Parakey Web OS

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  • by rminsk (831757) on Wednesday November 01, 2006 @06:21PM (#16680953)
    How is this an OS? An OS manages the hardware and software resources for a computer. Is this just a virtual filesystem?
  • One job, one tool (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Harmonious Botch (921977) * on Wednesday November 01, 2006 @06:24PM (#16680997) Homepage Journal
    Why must we have tools that try to do everything?

    I remember hearing about some guys named Brian and Dennis and uh I forget the third guy's name - it was back in the 60's - trying to write an operating system based on the idea that each part should do one distinct thing, and do it well. I don't know if anything ever came of it, but I thought that it sounded like a good idea.

    There is a major distinction between MY computer and the rest of the world. One is mine; the rest belongs to others. I treat them differently. I want my desktop to reflect it.
    There are already too many people who seem to forget that my stuff is mine - spammers, politicians, cold callers, door-to-door salesmen, etc - and that I might want it separate from the rest of the world. I don't want my OS forgetting this too.
  • by Alcimedes (398213) on Wednesday November 01, 2006 @06:30PM (#16681113)
    Anything that makes it "really easy" for me to move/save/delete files while online from any computer means that unless you're amazingly careful, you're also making it that much easier for someone else to do it for you.

    Maybe I'm just paranoid, but I have yet to see *any* vendor, be it closed source or open source take enough time and care with their code to write something that doesn't have gaping security holes in it.

    What's going to happen when what was a simple browser problem becomes a file system problem? Drive by downloads that wipe your machine.
  • by linguae (763922) on Wednesday November 01, 2006 @06:50PM (#16681421)

    Am I the only person appalled by these web interfaces, or even web desktops, being referred to as operating systems? It is technically wrong by a large margin. An operating system is the interface between hardware and software that manages the resources of hardware. Web "operating systems" do not manage any hardware.

    I find this usage appalling, and I hope that this terminology doesn't spread and dumb down the use of technical terms.

  • by blakeross (611172) on Wednesday November 01, 2006 @10:17PM (#16683685) Homepage
    Who said anything about paying for the service?

    In any case, with respect to your concerns about data lock-in: one of the driving principles of the system is that your data is always synchronized to at least one of your machines. If every datacenter on the planet exploded tomorrow, your data would be right there on your computer. You always own it.

    If I wanted to capitalize on name recognition, I'd have released the world's 87 millionth bookmark sharing website a few months after Firefox launched. We've been working on this in silence for a very long time, and will resume doing so when this has blown over next week. This has nothing to do with fame or fortune; it's about improving the experience for things we do everyday.

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