Started by Darren Dirt, January 21, 2020, 03:50:52 PM
QuoteIt's my opinion that commercial desktop operating systems are not long for this world.I started thinking about this back around 2015.Microsoft has very publicly committed to a "mobile first, cloud first" strategy. Windows as a desktop OS is neither.Apple has publicly stated in the past that the iPad is their most "perfect vision of computing." The iPad does not run macOS.Computing should be fun. Many of us were inspired at an early age by computers and technology and have turned that into both a life-long passion and a career.I'm setting out to rediscover this feeling....As you read in Part 1, I believe the desktop operating system is in grave danger. Apple has spent the last decade pursuing highly profitable mobile platforms consumer services and Microsoft has spent the better part of the last decade pursuing highly profitable services.macOS seems to be getting worse as the yearly releases.Windows seems to be getting slowly better while taking on the spyware business model borrowed from Google.As the situation progresses, we are at risk of losing the legacy of fully-featured desktop computing. As computing professionals, we need to preserve this legacy as best as we possibly can.The stakes are high. Those with the technical chops to move away from commercial operating systems should strongly consider doing so, now or at some point in the near future even if as nothing more than a vote of confidence.I have been thinking about what life after macOS and Windows might look like since 2015.At the time, I was thinking that we'd all have to shift over to Linux and wait for the software world to catch up, though it wasn't clear when or how this might work.Five years later, I'm starting to get an actual picture of what the future might be like.I will tell you where I am going and how I am going to do it...
QuoteMy primary desktop operating system is going to be Haiku OS.It's a retro-operating system inspired (but not based on) BeOS and maybe the only of it's kind not built on Linux. A second choice would be Ubuntu as I use it as a server OS at work and am very familiar with how it's laid out. The desktop shell in recent releases is very pretty, too.Haiku is severely lagging behind Linux right now in terms of adoption and some capabilities (for example, WebPositive is the only browser currently available for Haiku, and it's based on WebKit, not WebKit 2). However this is where computing gets "fun." I'm already envisioning some zany workflows and workarounds, and I do think that this will be a very good side-effect of leaving the commercial world behind.Here's what I like about Haiku, especially compared to Linux.-The user interface is 1990's style. The developers resurrected the UI from BeOS pretty well. It's efficient, friendly and you can actually tell buttons from text because of the dimension and depth in system controls. It's also as close as you can get to Apple Platinum or Windows Classic today.-The holistic approach to the operating system, from top to bottom. Whereas Linux distros are a layering of various pieces and components. Haiku has more of a feeling of a BSD style, macOS style releases. This is more sane and sensible to me, it also makes Haiku great as a desktop computing operating system.-Haiku is focused on desktop computing and personal computing.-The community. The core developers I have chatted with are friendly and incredibly knowledgeable. They also seem to care very deeply about the project, code quality and doing things right. This is the kind of project that I'd like to get involved in.Haiku won't be for everyone, so if any of the Linux distributions are more your style, go in that direction. As a matter of fact, I'd encourage this.Find and install niche operating system that you really enjoy and meets your sensibilities.This future of desktop computing should hopefully fracture user bases into several smaller user bases of mad computer scientists and software engineers hacking away.Everything will barely work and it will be glamorous.A key component of this new order is going to be data portability and hopefully translation layers to port and share applications between platforms.*BECAUSE...*no one is incentivized to push things forward. The old guard is not interested. ... "proof" (from a self-proclaimed "UI design critic" https://twitter.com/eli_schiff
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