Chrome OS - My 2 Cents into the Future

Last week Google gave their preview on Chrome OS and since many different opinions have been written. The opinions go from a complete failure to being already a winner and a look into the future. I'm in the last category, but love to have it already today.

Like many people today I use several devices to access information, sometimes this is a desktop with a lot of screen real estate, while more often it's a laptop for portability. Unless you are very keen on synchronizing a lot of information between the different devices, central storage that is web accessible is the easiest way to get to my information. This is not only about data, but also about preferences, settings and preferably also applications. I'm not very keen on replacing hardware, because it's just too cumbersome to reinstall all required applications, add-on's etc. You can say, I just love the cloud, cos it's so convenient.

Each time a I resume a device I start, if it isn't running yet, my default browser (Chrome on Windows, Safari on Mac) with my important applications.
1. iGoogle as a dashboard for my private emails, calendar, RSS feeds, IM, voice and video chats on google talk. A great starting point for launching other applications to make notes, write documents, write on blog posts, prepare presentations and for instance simple image manipulations
2. Brizzly as my new favorite Twitter client. It has replaced TweetDeck and Nambu as client installs. It's just too cumbersome to keep those up to date with the latest changes.
3. Outlook Web Access for my corporate email, not very user friendly but a lot better than the feature overload in the Outlook client.
4. Several 'social' community sites for interaction with others.

Besides these daily used web applications my employer Exact also has a great infrastructure for collaboration with my coworkers, access to my HR information and tcustomer dossiers based on Exact Synergy. Before you ask, No it can not be used in my favorite browser and depends on Internet Explorer. I usually don't disclose in this personal blog any work in progress, but yes we are working on multi-browser support.

The above mentioned applications are good for 80% of my computer activities. Areas that I would like to see improvement are creating compelling presentations and video editing. Two and a half years ago I did and experiment to live without a laptop. Already at that point creating presentations was the hardest. I'm looking forward to the web clients of Microsoft Office 2010, hopefully they can replace my client install of Office 2007 on some of the devices. Video editing requires large files to upload store and process, it might still take some time before we can handle that properly from web applications.

Overall it's just a matter of time until there are compelling web applications for everything we do. Chrome OS is the proof of this visions. I could live with Chrome OS today for a set of my devices. I look forward to the Google simplicity, speed and efficiency. I can't Wait!


I'm really excited by Chrome OS, mostly because of its uniqueness and willingness to target a niche audience. It's different from (most) other operating system in that it doesn't try to be everything for everyone.

What do I think it's missing, is hardware. What are you going to run it on?

And it just so happens I wrote a blog post about that (in Dutch, though):


Any hardware it will come available on.. I guess the first hardware will be crappy netbooks, but I hope soon someone will create a Netbook with a decent screen running Chrome OS...


My biggest concern with ChromeOS is how well they will handle drag and drop of documents/photos/media from site to site, and whether each site will have to somehow create or use standard APIs for this to make it useful. Until then, how do we go about having that seemless experience we're getting used to with our full-blown OSes? Without that, it's going to be very annoying trying to move data around.

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