A vision for a new operating system
This is a "kinda-manifesto" of Super OS developer
Why start a new operating system when there are already a "bazzilion" linux distros?
All free/open systems available today still have many usability problems... I think one very important issue is running programs: on Windows we have a great thing called .exe files, in Ubuntu, we have... ELF, .sh, .py files, but... let's face it, many of those must be opened from the command line... And how about portable apps? Running different versions of the same software on the same machine? not easy! (off course there are Virtual Machines...) Install software offline? Not easy! And many many other small issues... This project wants to provide a system that is easier to use and gives users more "true" freedom.
And what are the goals of this project?
The goals are very simple:
- Provide a good open/free system
- Promote open/free software
- Provide opportunities to people interested in developing software
- Offer users more choice (choice is freedom)
- Open to colaboration with other distros/OSes, software developers, companies (even if they develop "closed software")
- A project for the world: not for some country or group of people
- Fight proprietary/closed software
- Fight MS Windows, Mac OS, etc...
- Make money (off course we will try to generate revenue, but it will be used to improve the project)
"App Database" would be an website and the easiest way to install software (via the apturl way)
- Portable Apps: App Database could also offer "self-contained executables" (Portable Apps), users would have an option to download the program and it's dependencies, in a ready-to-use executable format (how it would work: users requested some software, the server would grab all the dependencies (deb), and then the server would join the app+dependencies and make an executable file)
- Software store: The App Database could have a section to sell software
Projects to look at:
- RUNZ (developed in-house by hacktolive)
- SFS Technology (helps create Portable Apps for Ubuntu)
- .dmg files that install software on Mac OS X (both an installer and a container for the program - install is not required to run the program) <-- very good method
- http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/ <-- Apple has a great "App database"
Everything can be made secure, but it has a price: usability. I think the current approach in Linux makes Linux a bit hard to use (all the UAC-like prompts; having to use the terminal to install VMware workstation... Having to type a password to update the system... the "Linux-UAC" is hard to disable.... etc, etc... that NOT user-friendly. Solutions:
- App Runner - easy way to run files (already inplemented)
- Easy to install files (sorry, but debs and offline repos just don't work out-of the box): RUNZ aims to fix that
- OS Firewall - similar to ZoneAlarm: Only programs that are now known trigger an alarm. "Good apps" (updated manager, synaptic, etc...) would be on the whitelist, or could be easily added to the whitelist (many tweaks also desirable). image: http://www.removingspywareforfree.com/images/articles/Getting_Started_With_Zone_Alarm_3.jpg
We all know it is complicated for many people to use money online, so why not create some kind of credit/points system? Some services offered could then be "bought" if the user has enough points.
Ways to earn "points":
- Make a contribution to the project
- Help people in the forums
- Develop software
- Offer bandwith and/or computing power and/or disk space by creating a "distributed network" were anyone can participate: you contribute with resources, and you earn points (similar projects: Folding@home, wuala)
- View ads to earn points (similar projects: bux.to)
Generating Revenue / Services
A way to make money is very important, since it helps support the development of the system:
- Donations/contributions (I think this is the most important way to get money)
- Offer official support
- Offer "Coding on demand": If you want some feature in the operating system, or any open software, we code it for you (a new firefox extension, a nautilus script, some feature in VLC, fix some bug that annoys you, etc, etc...)
- Sell physical goods (CDs with the OS, USB flash drives with the OS, Computers, Books, etc...)
- Offer Online account with the ability to store your files (similar project: apple.com/mobileme, getdropbox.com) (and now ubuntu one)
- Offer "Computing power on demand", you can use a global "distributed computing network" provided by users to compute some task that requires lots of processing power (3D rendering, etc...)
- "Premium accounts": same as regular accounts for web-services, but with support and faster speeds (and not forcing the user to wait on the line)