Friday, December 10th, 2010 at 2:11pm

Google’s new operating system floats on the cloud

Posted by Jordan Erickson

http://www.technologyreview.com/web/26882/?p1=A1&a=f

It looks like Google is set to fly high with their new line of notebooks. The new ChromeOS, unveiled recently, will rely on cloud computing to do most of its work. The Chrome web browser will be one of the only applications locally installed on the notebook, and will host its applications online through a Chrome app-store, available to the user in an online and offline mode.

Google hopes to lead a new-ish concept in computing by moving away from the traditional operating system model where software is installed and administrated by the end user. With most OSes, the end user is responsible for just about everything – from installing, configuring and maintaining their software. ChromeOS moves away from this concept in that it assumes the user (and the applications they install) are not trustworthy, and assumes the position of security, malware and system administrator for them. This is a unique approach to a growing market of consumers that tend to use their computers as glorified web-browsing machines anyway – take the flurry of smartphone users for example. E-mail, web, chat – that’s what many people want, and those are the only things many people want. Google will provide many software apps through their app store, such as image editors, word processors and more – all running online instead of on the computer itself.

It will be interesting to see how Google will transform the industry with their new operating system. Personally, I feel very happy that there is another player in the operating system game – competition breeds excellence with all involved parties. Google’s ChromeOS not only adds to the list of consumer operating systems, but shifts the focus from standalone computing to Internet-based computing…a focus that seems to be getting sharper and sharper lately.

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