Spooky. Just this morning, I predicted FLOSS would triumph on x86…

This afternoon, HP announced they are open-sourcing WebOS… I was pretty impressed with Leo’s demonstration of WebOS but HP could not do it on its own. Now, the world will get a look at the code and see whether it can fly. I expect it will and we will have another choice in case Android/Linux runs aground somehow. It’s all good, another source of supply. We know WebOS has Linux underneath and here’s the code. It’s a lot like GNU/Linux if you ask me. 😎

This is a smart move on HP’s part. It asserts some independence from M$, contributes to the open source community and shares with the world a polished technology. I would bet the investment is returned promptly. They may be able to sell lots of client PCs at higher margins once WebOS takes hold. HP already has ports for ARM and x86.

How’s that for fast turnaround on a prediction?

From M$’s point of view, they are now surrounded. OEMs of all kinds have products to ship running something else and M$ is a year away from shipping anything that might be competitive. I can see an excited young engineer telling his boss they can have this running on an eeePC by noon tomorrow. I can see shipments ready to go on x86 next week. GNU/Linux already works on x86… Chuckle. This thing will run on any PC soon.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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16 Responses to Spooky. Just this morning, I predicted FLOSS would triumph on x86…

  1. Ray says:

    Unfortunately, people do want to be binded… 🙁

  2. oiaohm says:

    Ray WebOS is already in the higher end printers.

    Nokia is making another OS and its not Meego. Nokia Meltemi designed for low spec phones that Android, windows Phone 7 and Meego cannot run on. Yes Meltemi is Linux based.

    What is project Meltemi Nokia announced the code name when the released Windows 7. Press being stupid thought the code name was for the Windows 7 phones. No it was not. Its a independent project to kill Symbian once and for all.

    Symbian S40 in particular are crappy low powered things that would throw a hiss fit of death if you tried to run meego or windows phone 7 on them. So Meltemi takes the Symbian phone qt based interface and sticks it on a Linux kernel. This is a completely different beast to Meego. Basically Nokia is doing in Symbian once and for all. It possible that old symbian applications will run on this new platform.

    Meego was attempt to build new. Meltemi is an attempt port old forwards and kill it off a piece at a time.

    Ray hardware makers don’t want to bind self to Google either. They are in fact after something they do have some direct control over.

    Android does have a weakness printer support.

  3. Ray says:

    About WebOS, open sourcing it would make it go into a niche market, but most people would ignore it, and go with Android, as it has the 2nd/1st largest market share. About it being a printer OS, they’re still working on it. And no, Nokia isn’t making another OS, it’s using Meego, the same one from the nokia n900. And about the hardware manufacturers wanted to get out of Microsoft, they would simply use Android, instead of having to making their own distros.

  4. oiaohm says:

    Clarence Moon the answer is no the don’t intend to use it for the prime arm chips.

    They don’t even make windows CE/Windows phone 7 drivers for those chips.

    Microsoft is being forced to release arm in the hope of being let back in the game. Don’t come to arm hardware makers will keep on developing on Linux until they don’t need Microsoft.

    Only arm chipset that support Windows 8 on arm is Nvidia’s and that is mostly that Nvidia wants to keep secrets. There are in fact 30 primary arm chipsets. So 1/30 support is not great.

    Simple fact you need to pull head out sand and wake up what is going down.

    I did not get carried way with the party line. I know where the party line of hardware makers really is.

  5. Clarence Moon says:

    My goodness, Mr. Oiaohm, you sure do get wound up easily! If “Hardware makers are forcing MS to release a arm version” would it not be the case that they intend to use it for their products? That is contrary to the party line around here, so I wonder if you just got carried away with listening to yourself and lost track of your story line. 🙂

  6. oiaohm says:

    Some of the old items like furbies in look are pom pom creatures.

    Basically the design is old. Tech to make the design has improved but humans keep on making it for some reason.

  7. oiaohm says:

    Clarence Moon
    “The special thing about software that prevents hardware companies from making it is the overall complexity and the cost of keeping a technical staff around that can support existing use and make useful advances that make the hardware products appealing to end users.”
    New level in stupidity. Number 1 hardware makers are huge users of software themselves. Number two driver development requires some nicely highly technical staff. Linux project style where those can work unified on drivers saves them cost compared to development for windows where each hardware makers has to make own.

    So yes hardware companies have to keep the staff required to expand and extend there own break away OS to maintain stuff for windows.

    Clarence Moon the thing you are missing is the hardware makers did not stop working on Linux just because the Linux netbooks were not ready.

    Since the time of Linux netbooks the hardware makers working on core parts of Linux have been increasing also projects like unified OS neutral html5 application development has also started and being pushed by hardware makers. Another name for this is WAC(Wholesale ApplicationsCommunity) since 2010 and was called OMTP from 2004-2010 that did the BONDI release in 2008 by them that started down the road. This is your big problem you think the Linux laptop guys gave up. They did not they just changed plan. Yes a few years ago at the failure of the Linux netbooks to dig in many things changed to make the next attempt stronger.

    Clarence Moon
    “Until an OEM can guarantee a customer that their existing programs and data will be compatible with the OEM’s new OS offering, they are likely to lose sales and/or suffer a high rate of return merchandise.”
    No it called the rain of hell.

    Hardware makers are forcing MS to release a arm version. Result is MS own mix of machines running windows will become confusing to users. So having windows will not make sure you have compatibility either.

    Reason why hardware makers forcing MS down this path. Its too costly maintaining Windows CE and Windows 7 and Window XP drivers. Hardware makers want to reduce.

    hula-hoop never really came out of no where. The thing has from all records been turning up since 500 B.C. It comes in and out of fad. It is really a good get fit device but it is tricky to use.

    Furby is another one in different forms that has been turning up many times. People forget the gremlins movie toys by the time furby turned up. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JY-aU2anG0c Particularly this one remember it pre-dates Furby invention.
    There are the many puff ball toys before that. Some of the really old ones of the same kind of look have old school movement triggered sounds. Again the basic design of Mogwai from gremlins or Furbies has turned up over and over again in history. No one knows where it started.

    Your two examples of out of nowhere are not in fact out of nowhere. They are both coming from historic things. Lot of things that take off like a bat out of hell turn out to be historic items that keep on turning up. Like yoyo fads.

    So I can take from this you are a idiot when it comes to repeating historic fads. Yes small fur ball with large eyes and large ears is a historic repeated fad. Mostly because they were simple to make.

    This is why its important to study history humans repeat and repeat and repeat…..

    Clarence Moon have you not seen my other post point out that Angry Birds is html5 and if you have a chrome browser installed you can run it. So that is basically all Linux’s in existence can run it.

    So yes users will be guarantee a list of there existing applications will work on the new platforms. The html5 provided applications. Yes a solution to all that Linux diversity. Not a path I was expecting the solution from this direction either.

    This is why MS is heading into so much trouble they are no longer the only game in town that is providing standard applications.

  8. Clarence Moon says:


    What stops hardware manufacturers from adopting Linux as their OS and supplying it themselves is the consumer perception that they want to keep their current, well-known applications. Until an OEM can guarantee a customer that their existing programs and data will be compatible with the OEM’s new OS offering, they are likely to lose sales and/or suffer a high rate of return merchandise.

    That is what happened, I understand, with the Linux netbooks a few years ago.

  9. Clarence Moon says:

    The special thing about software that prevents hardware companies from making it is the overall complexity and the cost of keeping a technical staff around that can support existing use and make useful advances that make the hardware products appealing to end users.

    Back in the pre-MS-DOS days, the big companies, Apple, Radio Shack, Commodore, Atari, TI, etc., made their own OS and the little guys who made the S-100 bus products all relied on a customer buying CP/M from Digital Research in order to use their stuff.

    Fast forward to 1990 or so and Apple still made its own OS, but all the other companies who were now making x86 “IBM PC Compatible” stuff relied on customers using MS-DOS from Microsoft. The only real difference here was the huge uptake of the IBM PC and clones vs others who all withered on the vine except for Apple.

    For phones, a similar sort of thing happened in that there were/still are a lot of phone OS being made by the hardware maker, notably Apple, RIM, and Nokia. But many of the makers have now adopted Android as their main or only OS. As long as the OS is not an important factor in differentiating their products, the manufacturers are not going to spend much time or money doing their own OS because it costs too much money to go it alone.

    Apple does that because Apple has always done that. It might be possible for Apple to switch to Android under the hood, so to speak, as long as they didn’t call it by that name. iPhones have no functional advantage over Android phones and they are, similarly, not at any disadvantage either outside of whatever cost Apple incurs due to paying for their technical staff.

    Microsoft will never create a market for Windows Phone unless they find some sort of difference that they can supply that end users see as plainly better and causes phone makers to jump on board. So far there doesn’t seem to be anything like that on the horizon. However, you never know. Things like the Furby and the hula-hoop came out of nowhere and caused overnight demand

  10. oiaohm says:

    Really WebOS is not exactly failure for HP it making a great Printer OS. Ray.

    Really WebOS and Buba and Tizen …. Even Nokia is making there own Linux again. How many before you get the hint the hardware makers are wanting out of the MS relationship and are looking to Linux something.

    This is the problem that had to come. There is nothing special about software that prevents hardware companies making it so cutting out the middle man Microsoft. Only wall they have to break is the MS vendor lockin.

  11. Kozmcrae says:

    “While no one care about WebOS… and another failed platform from HP.”

    While you can include me as one who doesn’t care about WebOS, the are plenty of people who will: The ones who would dare to be the next Android for one.

    As for “another failed platform from HP”. Who doesn’t have failures? If your company doesn’t have any failures, it doesn’t have any successes either.

    So Ray, can you come up with anything of any real value, good or bad, to say about open sourcing WebOS?

  12. Ray says:

    While no one care about WebOS… and another failed platform from HP.

  13. Hanson says:

    Mr. Pogson, see to it that you get a place in a good sanatorium. Nobody wants to read in the newspaper that you pulled a Jack Torrance.

    I really hope that your wild FLOSS delusions don’t somehow manifest in violence. I mean, you do like guns.

  14. Kozmcrae says:

    “…but I fail to see the significance of it all.”

    No Clarence, your statement is completely at odds with all your other previous statements concerning anything to do with open source. It’s your use of the word ‘all’. You see no significance in GNU/Linux, Linux or FLOSS in general because you never deal with the whole, just pieces. Perhaps you meant to say “the significance of WebOS.

    Your approach seems to be to take one aspect of GNU/Linux, Linux or FLOSS and pit it against the whole of some proprietary interest. You did just that recently comparing Microsoft’s market presence in servers with Red Hat’s, implying Microsoft has a bigger share than Linux… Did you see the switch? Red Hat now becomes Linux? That’s what you do Clarence. It’s a little game you play but doesn’t get you anywhere.

    WebOS doesn’t need to be a success at all. It can crash and burn for all I care. It won’t make a damn bit of difference in the outcome between FLOSS and Microsoft and all their proprietary friends. The outcome is not in doubt, just how it’s played out and the time frame.

  15. Ivan says:

    Meh, this is a “we don’t want to deal with this crap, here you fix it” move, worked wonders with Sun.

  16. Clarence Moon says:

    I see where this stuff is open source, Mr. Pogson, but I fail to see the significance of it all. HP was going to use it on its PCs to have essentially instant-on access to email and web information, but they have apparently decided not to do that. It still requires Windows to operate, as near as I can tell from reading the Wikipedia reference you posted, so how is this a problem for Microsoft?

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