Connect-ability Over All

Imagine taking a snapshot with your camera phone, cropping it, tagging it, maybe even adding a bubble quote, then being able to send it to all your friends without using any built-in software or having to install a 3rd party app – Every piece of software you use can live elsewhere and you can jump around from tool to tool as you see fit.

This is an idea that I was getting at when I wrote The Browser is Dead. The browser is helping remove the need for software to live locally on our systems.

BXP makes a great point:

“The beauty of browsers, though, is that as the Web evolves, the interface stays the same. Remember when browsers were just HTTP viewers? Now browsers can run applications and display dynamic content.” – BXP (The Browser is Dead #comment-69)

It is not only that browsers have changed, but that web servers have changed. Connect-ability is more important than any specific technology or platform. What needs to happen in order for browsers to become better than an OS?

One comment on “Connect-ability Over All

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    I think you’re definitely on track. Connect-ability definitely is a factor. Web apps will have to evolve to support offline use, which I’m guessing shouldn’t be too hard being that TCP/HTTP connections aren’t persistent (i.e., you can open a web page and it is still viewable when offline).

    Web apps are an extension of server-based computing (SBC), which has been around for a long time in the corporate world. And, with more “software as a service” distribution models, SBC is trickling down to consumers.

    What will happen to the OS? Well, I think more OS functionality will be integrated into chipsets. I mean, virtualization already is changing the relationship between the hardware and the operating system.

    I’m not a programmer or computer science expert, but I think we’ll see more developments in the file system (remember the object-oriented file system MS tried to get into Vista?). Whether or not the app runs locally or on a remote server, some operating system somewhere is handling the file system tasks.

    Currently, we OS vendors have integrated a lot of app-level functions into the OS, such as media burning, image viewing, multimedia playing, etc. So what’s the next step? Does the growth of web-based computing mean more OS-level functions will move to the app, making PCs more like a dumb terminal? Or, will PCs become more like dedicated devices, such as game consoles? Or maybe something different will happen?

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