OS were originally designed as general purpose. I know I was there when UNIX was born. And general purpose brings baggage that is not necessary in the age of mega-chips and specialization.
The next stage is staring us in the face ... Everybody I meet has a smart phone and likely a kindle, or laptop. I don’t find lap tops generally useful for full-time work and much prefer a desktop to do real work. But then again I am not the mass market. And there is the rub, the smart phone for better or worse has taken the market by storm. Just look at what Apple iPhone and iPad sales are doing compared to their desktops and laptops.
So while writing the book may require more resources, Kindle has shown reading it is cheap and easy. Kindle books on Amazon has already outsold regular books.
Desktops are near gone at Best Buy, and laptops have become standard. But everybody is now working on the next generations of iPad knock offs. Apple sales of iPhones is looking to top 100 million soon.
This Christmas may be the one ...
Hey servers will still need OSes, just not the average mass market Joe, they have already switched to laptops sometime ago and are moving on ....
Think the nightmare you would have managing large numbers of users, and then the cloud becomes very attractive.
OSes provide integration between the hardware and the software. They might have other tools for resource management but those are really applications. The actual OS itself is the layer between hardware and application, and that will never go away.
The smart phone has taken the phone market by storm. It is not a desktop replacement, it’s not good at anything desktops are actually needed for. The screen is too small for long term working, the keyboard is too small for long term working, the memory and storage are too small for large scale functionality. Actually iPhone and iPad sales are negligible compared to desktops and laptops.
Kindle is only outselling hardbacks, which account for about 5% of book sales.
Windows is on 1.1 BILLION machines. 100 million iPhones still puts them 91% of the market away from taking over.
EVERYTHING needs OSes, read what I said. Your precious smart phones ALL have OSes. 4.0 of the iPhone OS came out at the same time as thenew hardware, and can be applied to previous versions of the hardware. Average mass market Joe might not KNOW about the OS, but there’s still an OS on every single device he’s using, PC, smart phone, DVR, Garmin, laptops, Kindle. They all have OSes.
You still have to manage large numbers of users. Nothing really changes with the cloud, they all still have machines that will be configured and updated. The only difference is that when something happens to the company’s network those machines become completely useless. In the current world when the internet connection fails productivity goes up because people lose a major method of screwing around. In a cloud world when the internet connection fails productivity ends.