Life on a memory stick?

June 24, 2007

Being away from home for a couple of nights, would there be a need for me to have my laptop? I decided that there wouldn’t. All I wouldn’t have access to would be my personal mail and only because I haven’t set up web access for it. I would just need a copy of some bookmarks stored in a html file on a memory stick. Infact, I didn’t even need that, I just mailed them to my web mail account… I wouldn’t need local applications, everything I would need would be right there on the web.

If you use Google apps already, you’ll know what I mean. It’s fairly easy to imagine that the browser is the operating system. Clearly you can use Google on any platform, so the operating system becomes irrelevant, the browser is the OS. To a large degree, the browser is also irrelevant; Google is the common denominator here.

Larry Ellison had a vision back in around ’96 for a diskless Network Computer (which kind of turned into the iMac – note I said ‘kind of’) and now it appears technology is heading in that direction in a round about sort of way. Maybe in another ten years…

For a while now I’ve been visiting this site, just checking in from time to time to see how progress is going.

The idea certainly has some advantages. Especially if you provide software. If you are a developer you virtually eradicate software piracy. By not distributing any software, users just log onto your site and use the software there, while having the choice to store locally on their hard drive or on rented server space. So you pay once for a registration and once again for storage. Developers will make a lot of money this way.

I would do both and still back up. The chances of you loosing data on your hard drive are small, but a lot bigger than if your data was stored on a web service, unless the company goes bust or you loose your connection. Which is why I would do both. Wherever you went, so long as you had access to the internet, you would be effectively sitting in front of your own computer.

The technology isn’t quite mature enough yet, but some companies are getting close, though they are lacking in functionality and compatibility. If the thought intrigues you, have a look here







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