Web OS

It was suggested to me this week that perhaps I should do an article on the fairly recent developments in the field of web Operating Systems although I’ll be honest that I started out not really understanding the point of such a concept and even after researching this article I’m afraid to say that I still don’t.

A WebOS is a virtual Operating System that runs in your web browser.The term ‘Operating System’ is a little misleading as a WebOS is in fact a set of applications running in your web browser which together either mimic or supplement your existing desktop environment.

Obviously a WebOS is unable to replace your existing Operating System as all the existing functions present in an Operating System such as Windows are required in order to boot the PC and get it to a stage where you would be able to launch an Internet Browser.This in itself is enough to instantly put me off the concept as if you have to use Windows anyway then surely you would just be better off continuing to use it rather than going to the additional effort of launching an Internet browser and then loading your considerably slower WebOS?

The premise is that a WebOS would be ideal for people that are always on the move; traditional Operating Systems are designed to be used on one computer only but with a WebOS you can supplement your existing set up with a system that can follow you around wherever you have Internet access.Once you set up the system you can then log in using any computer with Internet access and then you would immediately have access to any of the documents, e-mails and files present in your WebOS desktop.

For the purposes of this review I took a look at what I would consider to be one of the best Web Operating Systems, Goowy which can be used completely free of charge at www.goowy.com.Written in Flash you will find it pretty speedy to use on most Internet connections but don’t be expecting blisteringly fast speeds.

Within the desktop style OS you have instant access to a file uploader, e-mail client, RSS reader, instant messenger, calendar and so on.I personally feel pretty sorry for the programmers who are given the task of creating a web Operating System because we immediately demand that any of the applications included within are up to what we have become accustomed too.Unfortunately the inbuilt applications, whilst good are nowhere near as good as those that I use on a daily basis and whilst it would be unfair for me to expect them to be up to the same standard this is still one of the main reasons I couldn’t recommend using such a system at present.

The premise of a Web Operating System is an interesting one and so I would recommend visiting the Goowy website just to take a look but at present I just don’t think any of my readers would obtain any real benefits from such a service.If you need your files on the move then I would recommend using a laptop, a pen drive or a free online file storage website as these in my opinion are much more viable alternatives at present.Having said all of the above, this is a new concept and so no doubt over the coming months improvements in the technology will be enough for me to completely change my mind.



About the Author – Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.