Web Designers On Distributed Computingbrighton website designNot since I wrote my less than mediocre dissertation, 15 years ago, predicting the future ofcomputing to become distributed. With light client end terminals, served apllications fromcentralised hubs, based on networking technologies and the new at the time Javaprogramming language, previosly know as Oak. This has seemed to evolved into cloudtechnologies that massive companies like google and amazon have embraced. I spend mostof my time as a web designer (web design brighton ) trying to make websites compatible withbrowsers. But now browsers are not just interface to websites, but also online applications.See the article from techcrunch below:Chrome OS: Google’s Most Underrated Project That You’ve Already BeenTesting And Just Didn’t KnowItThere are hundreds of devices to choose from when you’re considering a new desktopcomputer, laptop or mobile device. We’re overwhelmed by all of the choices we have, butchoice is good. When it comes to computing, as far as operating systems, there are threehuge players: Microsoft, Apple and Google. Yes, Google.A curious thing happened during Chrome’srise to being the most-used browser-an operatingsystem was born. Perhaps that was the plan all along, one can never truly know with Google.What I do know is that when you’re on the go, especially with a laptop, the primary piece ofsoftware that everyone uses is the web browser, so why not build an operating system on topof it?That’s exactly what Chrome OS is and it’s starting to make its way to consumers. Google hasannounced strong partnerships with hardware manufacturers like Samsung and Acer to buildaffordable (not cheap) laptops built for a world that accesses information in the cloud. When Isay the cloud, I mean, email, files, web surfing, chatting and social networking. These thingsare all done very well through the browser and not through an installed desktop application.You’d be hard-pressed to find something that you can’t do through the browser, and need
actual installed software for. For me, it was using Spotify to listen to music, but that’s beingsorted out as we speak. I sat down with the Chrome OS team to discuss its evolution andcurrent iteration and came away quite impressed.The OS Chrome OSis an open-source operating system built on many of the things that you might be usingalready with the Chrome browser. Everything is quite familiar, with the full integration of all ofGoogle’s core products: Drive, Chrome, Gmail, Play, Plus, and of course Search. If you useGoogle products, then using Chrome OS will be an extremely natural experience for you.Everything runs pretty quickly on the device that I’m using right now, the latest SamsungChromebook. I find that I’m not looking to drag and drop things onto a desktop, because itgets messy. Instead, everything is held in an internal filesystem that can be dragged anddropped anywhere, including Google Drive. This makes for moving files between systemssuper simple. Since all of the things you would probably want to do are available via Chromeextensions, you’ll be able to evolve your environment as new things become available.Speaking of super simple, I was able to open this laptop, log in with my Google credentials,and start using it as if it were my tablet or phone within three minutes. Since everything issynced, it doesn’t matter what device you’re using in a Google world. It just works. And moreimportantly, it’s easy to iterate on, on the fly.Caesar Sengupta, Product Management Director on Chrome OS at Google, told me:The story for Chrome OS starts way back. It starts with the browser, Chrome. Google’s aweb company: We push the boundaries of the web; everything we do is largely on the web.One of the things we realized early on was the web wasn’t keeping up with the potential ofwhat the web could be. We were building apps like Gmail and Google News – rich andvibrant. Browsers weren’t able to handle it. And the web is a platform that allows you todeploy globally without installation. You could pick up any machine login and work. In orderto build fun and sexy stuff, you have to build on it.The Hardware
The hardware itself, like I mentioned, the Samsung Chromebook, looks strikingly similar tothe MacBook Air. Yes, start your complaining about copycatting now, that’s not the point. It’slight, runs quickly, and does exactly what you’d want to do. Especially if you rely on a webbrowser a lot.Here are full details about what’s inside:• 11.6’’ (1366×768) display• 0.7 inches thin – 2.42 lbs / 1.1 kg• Over 6.5 hours of battery 1• Samsung Exynos 5 Dual Processor• 100 GB Google Drive Cloud Storage2 with 16GB Solid State Drive• Built-in dual band Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n• VGA Camera• 1x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0• HDMI Port• Bluetooth 3.0™ CompatibleIt’s pretty impressive, but who cares about all of that. It just works, and it works quite well.Regarding its strategy in rolling out Chromebook hardware over the past year, Group ProductManager Ryan Tabone told me:The point of the prototype was to develop the software. Samsung and Acer shipped devices
last year – same form factor but based on Atom. We basically just offered these devicesonline. The people who were ready for it, came to it. We realized at Google this journey isgoing to take us some time. The world is moving into these ecosystems. For a web companyto have hardware, it was an area we needed to have a strong offering in.The PricePrice is one of those things that trips everyone up. We know what an iPhone costs, kind of.We know what an iPad and a Surface costs. Prices are expensive to some and cheap toothers. This particular Samsung Chromebook is $249. You can call it cheap, or you can call itinexpensive. I’ll go with the latter.The nice part about machines at that pricepoint is that you can get them into the hands ofkids. In fact, Google is seeing pretty good traction in schools that are picking upChromebooks for entire classrooms. They’re easy to administer from a high level and low-priced enough if they were to get broken, stolen or lost.Also, I tend to break things or drop them in toilets. Don’t ask. In that case, running out andpicking up another laptop that I can be up and running on in a matter of minutes in my exactprevious state is pretty priceless. So let’s call this thing inexpensive, shall we?Sengupta had this to say on the price:There was a core group of people who were using these as additional computers, for otherpeople in the family, like my wife. She does a lot but does it all online.Tabone had a good point:When have you ever thought of giving someone a computer as a gift?Never.The Point
Computing doesn’t have to be difficult, it should be fun and efficient at the same time. Youcan do both, and Google does a wonderful job of facilitating that with its current suite ofproducts and services. Even if you’re not an Android phone user, which I’m not, you can stillfind value in Chrome OS.From a usability, price, and compatibility perspective, it’s difficult to find another operatingsystem on hardware that runs this well, and without so little effort to actually make it work.Basically, you won’t be getting tons of calls from mom and dad on how to use it. That’s goodfor us, but for them too. It’s empowering.You should use technology, it shouldn’t use you.And the best technology finds itself getting completely out of the wayIf you use the Chrome browser, you’ve already been testing it, you just didn’t know it.Chrome OS won’t change the way that you compute, it’ll just make it easier.