EtchA-OS – How Apple could take back the desktop.

Shake to reboot!
I was thinking about GUI’s the other night while doodling on my OhioArt PDA.

The megacorp that owns the desktop is like any other. They start out small, lie, cheat, steal, become the only option, and move right to the top. Then after a while complacent thinking takes over. “Well, we’re your ONLY option, so – DEAL…” Then down the road, they get kicked – hard. Remember when big blue was your ONLY hardware option?

Well, Micro$oft has taken this path. “Borrowed” some stuff from IBM, “evaluated” some Xerox hardware, flat out stole some file compression software, bundled all of that together in order to push out some Internet browsers. You write code for their OS, while praying that you don’t get stepped on, and dreaming that one day they will buy your little software company.

It’s clear that complacent thinking has taken over in Redmond. With the recent code leak they are scrambling the FBI on contractors, while downplaying the vulnerability. The time is right for an open source kick.

RedHat is a fine example of a company that can make money giving away it’s products and letting everyone look at their code. You can load RedHat, or called by it’s free-ware name Fedora, on just about anything, including the KitchenAid blender. (Okay you may need FreeBSD for the blender.) The point is – you can get any personal computer to run a UNIX based OS. Darwin is Apple’s open source UNIX based OS. The Darwin X86 project is running Darwin on Intel PC’s right now.

So, Apple – here’s what you do: Compile your GUI for Darwin x86. Now every PC on the planet can run MacOSX. Setup a support structure for paying customers and let go of being able to dictate hardware requirements. You will still have the fastest PC’s on the planet and we can now do a true side by side compare of Intel vs. Motorola. Who cares who’s faster – in the long run they will be running your operating system. You will at this point go into competition with RedHat, but I think they’ll survive. Give them free iPods or something. :)

About The Author


Hardware hacker, technology integrator, and maker. He enjoys staring blankly at code, voiding the warranty, and touching things in the back. When not doing that he is building and racing a rally car.

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02 2004

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