I've never fully understood the implications of the "browser-as-operating-system" shift, but it seems… bad? As though someone thought "what if web developer's problems were everyone's problems?"

@stephen It works really well for schools and chromebooks, I understand.

It means that if you spill coffee on your chromebook, all your stuff is still on the school server.

But uh, that's only one possible interpretation of "browser as operating system"

@stephen another interpetation is this talk "the birth and death of javascript", in which if you run the browser virtual machine in ring 0, *as* the kernel, you can avoid a lot of memory protection overhead, shuttling calls in and out of the kernel stuff since code run in a virtual machine doesn't need as much babysitting from the MPU

@zens @stephen that's just a networked file system. we did this on XP machines with SFTP 10 years ago at my high school.

@grainloom @zens Right?

The benefit of remote storage is obvious, but… the solution is to limit the app-space to Chrome? 😦

@stephen @zens Google would really like you to think that you can't do computing without them.

@stephen heh we've circled back to the 70s, but with much more overhead. welcome back language kernel, too bad javascript isn't a lisp and that the implementation is... overly complex to say the least.

@xj9 @stephen welcome to webassembly, where you get all the problems of a compiled language and all the problems of JavaScript

@stephen Let's make a safe space for people to exchange content that creates a shield between the OS and the content. We'll call this a browser.

Now, let's put the OS in the enclosure.

@stephen the absolute worst part of it is the lack of interoperability/composability: you don't have tools that you can employ your creativity to put together to do new things, you just have a bunch of siloed views into remote services that basically treat your computer as a thin client, only a thin client communicates with an actual OS, not a bunch of narrow arbitrary leaky abstractions

this is a fundamental limitation on the power of contemporary user-facing systems that the web has created

Sign in to participate in the conversation

Merveilles is a community project aimed at the establishment of new ways of speaking, seeing and organizing information — A culture that seeks augmentation through the arts of engineering and design. A warm welcome to any like-minded people who feel these ideals resonate with them.