Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Good OS

Good OS, gOS for short, is a Linux distribution with a friendly interface. I've used Ubuntu, on which gOS is based, and gOS adds onto and simplifies the standard Ubuntu distribution.

Many of the settings I had to hunt for and figure out are already the default settings in gOS. For instance the ability to snif out and connect to an open WiFi hotspot is turned on by default in gOS.

gOS also adds a Mac OSX-like dock interface for launching applications. This interface graphically represents all the applications (more or less) that you can use with the operating system. Here is an image of gOS showing the OS and the File browser.

For those not familiar with the icons on the doc, the first two are Firefox and Gmail. The last three are's Word, Excel, and Powerpoint compatible Office programs. The rest I leave to you to explore.

One feature, well behavior really, that I found very interesting was the way windows were minimized. Since there is a dock I assumed that windows would minimize to it. On a Mac it does. As a long time MS Windows user this behavior takes some getting used to. In gOS on the other hand, the minimized windows go to the task bar - just like in XP. Since this is a well understood paradigme I think kids and grandma will find it very intuitive to use.

Finally, in another tip-of-the-hat to Apple's Mac, Google's gadgets can be loaded "on the desktop." This feature closely mimics (rip's off?) OSX dashboard.

I only had a few minutes with this OS booted from CD rom. However, I was impressed. gOS says they have plans to launch an OS that boots "into a browser" to get you online as fast as possible. I'll be looking to try that when it becomes available. Afterall, browsing the web is what I do first 99% of the time when I sit down at a computer.

No comments:

Post a Comment