Google wave and the future

One thing that using wave made me think about is Google’s new Operating system called Chrome. It is still in the development phase, but we already know the basic idea behind it. The way that Google sees it, most people tend to do most stuff on the internet, so why have stuff on the computer at all? Why not just have all of your data and applications on the web?

A wild idea right? Well, not really. Many people already use webmail instead of a mail program on the computer. Google has already shown how useful productivity apps like word processors and spreadsheets can be online through Google office. How many of you use an online photo site like Flicker or Facebook to store your pictures? Banking, streaming music, shopping, watching videos and TV shows, even data storage via cloud servers are now all done online. The Chrome OS is essentially a browser that allows you to have very fast access to everything on the net. The OS itself will actually be at Google, not on the computer really, so viruses and worms won’t be able to affect the computer. Security is all taken care of online, there won’t be any reason to try to gain access to the computer because there essentially won’t be anything on it.

In theory, your computer should be as fast as your internet connection. It’s an exciting concept, and I think it will appeal to a lot of people that consume content (as oppose to making things like music, video, and other media) and don’t want to have to deal with the messiness of backing up data and security issues.

Using Google Wave gave me just an inkling of the potential of doing stuff without an OS on the computer. It will allow you to work in ways that we are just now starting to dream of. Something like wave has the potential to merge word processing, email, wiki creation, and IM on one tab of your browser. Applications will no longer be programs you run on your machine but simply links along the side of your screen. Now that I have FIOS, I can see the potential of online apps. Honestly, I am having trouble imagining anything that I do on a computer that couldn’t be done totally online. Well, eventually, right now I can’t do what I want online because there aren’t equivalents for everything I do online yet. There’s no reason they couldn’t be though…

Chrome won’t be for everyone, not until everyone can get unlimited access to fast internet, but it is an exciting new choice that should be coming in the near future. I can see my next laptop being one running Chrome. I’ll have a big rig for doing my audio, photo, and video stuff on, but for around the house and normal stuff, Chrome will probably be all I need. These are exciting times…

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