The Desktop is dead, long live the Desktop.
When i get into conversation about the popularity of Linux and Open source it always returns to the predominance of Windows on the desktop. However when I point out that the desktop war is no longer relevant I get the askance looks of horror and embarrassment from people who wonder what the heck I am going on about .
Now I see that at this weeks GUADEC it appears that more people of clue have gathered together and are discussing the idea of a online desktop.Â Ive been spending the last few weeks wondering if it would be rude of me to suggest to Mr Shuttleworth that Bug #1 might not need to be fixed since it may be made irrelevant by way of the internet.Â It seems to me that Microsofts own operating system which is very much suited for life on stand alone or gaming PCs will not be able to handle the intricacies of running in such a open and distributed fashion. Whereas the open source development model already established in the open and online world of sharing and securing ideas and information will have no problems in adapting.
Apple wont be left behind in this either since they have modeled there own operating system architectures after more robust network environments and I would imagine they would bring a certain amount of “bling” to the environment when they do.
I look forward to see how this proceeds but I for one welcome my FaceBook openID Gnome login with access to all my online and personal media to be shared with whomever I am working with at that moment.
Thanks for reading.
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The only qualifier is that people think the “online desktop” will be today’s desktop, only accessed via the browser. Then they argue that that won’t work, so the desktop will stay PC-bound.
But it won’t be. Just look at how email got made part of the Web 2.0 as opposed to remaining as another Internet service: Not through web-interfaces like Gmail, but through social networks – See all the stories doing the rounds lately about kids only using email to talk to ‘old’ people (like us!)
Same with the desktop – it won’t suddenly go online, it’ll be rendered redundant by various online services that slowly replace it.