That Lurch You Just Felt Was a Tectonic Shift

Google Plans a PC Operating System
By Miguel Helft and Ashlee Vance

SAN FRANCISCO — In a direct challenge to Microsoft, Google announced late Tuesday that it is developing an operating system for PCs that is tied to its Chrome Web browser.

The software, called the Google Chrome Operating System, is initially intended for use in the tiny, low-cost portable computers known as netbooks, which have been selling quickly even as demand for other PCs has plummeted. Google said it believed the software would also be able to power full-size PCs.

. . . “Speed, simplicity and security are the key aspects of Google Chrome OS,” said Sundar Pichai, vice president of product management, and Linus Upson, engineering director, in a post on a company blog. “We’re designing the OS to be fast and lightweight, to start up and get you onto the Web in a few seconds.”

Mr. Pichai and Mr. Upson said that the software would be released online later this year under an open-source license, which would allow outside programmers to modify it. Netbooks running the software will go on sale in the second half of 2010.

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Ah yes–the meek shall indeed inherit the earth. Open source. The years and tears of Microsoft users are about to be mitigated by an upstart who maps the earth and makes available the world of print.

We motorcyclists say ‘chrome won’t get you home,’ but just this once, perhaps it will.

Had to happen.

Way past time.

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