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Article:
  Tim O'Reilly's WWDC Keynote Manuscript
Subject:   When will the OS be free of the hardware?
Date:   2002-05-29 13:44:45
From:   dettifoss
I've heard nothing but good things about OS X, from colleagues, from Open Source publications and advocates, the list goes on. I'd love to give it a try, I really would. And I would give it a try (and might even become an instant convert), if I could use it on the hardware platform of my choice.


What is it about these people, the Suns and Apples of this world, that makes then insist we buy their boxes as well as their software? Why can't we have the choice (yes, I know about Solaris for the PC - wasn't that discontinued this year?)?


The single greatest factor in bring the power and flexibility of computers to the home and desktop has been the commoditization of the PC hardware platform - kudos to IBM for that, and grudging acknowledgement to MS for riding he wave. But make no mistake about it: the principal reason behind MS's success as a business is down to the affordability of the hardware.


What are the obstacles to OS X on Intel? Darwin runs on Intel, right? Might it not be possible for OS X to become platform-independent (given the will of Jobs), in the same way Linux has? I don't know - I'd like to know, though...


IMHO, OS X could be a real contender on the Intel platform, if only it were given a chance. Why isn't it being given that chance? Or maybe that's the next step in it's progression?


Does anyone out there have any insight?

Full Threads Newest First

Showing messages 1 through 5 of 5.

  • When will the OS be free of the hardware?
    2002-06-01 06:15:16  jmjarrett [View]

    It is simple economics. It takes a lot of money to launch an assault on an entrenched market leader. If you know any venture capitalists willing to invest 100 billion dollars or so to finance the renewal of competition in the Wintel market against Microsoft you should have them get in touch with Apple. Unfortunately no one appears to be willing to finance a competitor to Microsoft and who can blame them since such a battle would require quite a few years to show a return and has no guarantee of success. I have little doubt that if Apple could afford such a battle they would willing to phase out the computer hardware side of the business for a second chance to overthrow "the power." (This time MS not IBM)

    That's my take on it at least.
  • When will the OS be free of the hardware?
    2002-06-03 09:27:16  rodgersclay [View]

    Think about it though, Apple is in a unique situation to where they can change to the market place very quickly because they make both the OS and the Hardware. That is the reason why Apple was the first major company selling/pushing 802.11 aka Airport. This makes Apple a very serious contender in the computer market because of the swiftness to adopting new hardware into the OS. Supporting all the various forms of hardware is one of Microsoft's worst headaches and the biggest headache to building your own Windows based hardware.
  • When will the OS be free of the hardware?
    2005-03-29 12:34:30  CrimsonRE [View]

    "Why can't we have the choice (yes, I know about Solaris for the PC - wasn't that discontinued this year?)?"

    Nope. Solaris 10 is even free for x86.
  • When will the OS be free of the hardware?
    2005-03-29 19:46:51  AndyKirk [View]

    This might be an urban legend but of course it seems believable and is repeated often enough in OSX+intel discussions. MS invested some US$300M in Apple in the late '90s, when Apple really needed the cash to keep going. It was viewed by many as MS making sure they had a competitor to point to in any antitrust/monopoly cases against them. The rumor is that a condition of the investment was a non-compete clause on the intel platform. If true that's more evidence of their anticompetitive, anticooperative business practices.
  • When will the OS be free of the hardware?
    2005-03-30 03:40:48  Fredb7 [View]

    What are the obstacles to OS X on Intel?

    The fact that Apple is an Hardware vendor first, maybe?
    Or the fact that the OS X superiority is due, in part, to the hardware/OS integration?
    The fact that Apple almost died when they allowed the clones?

    Apple is profitable now, even without the iPods, so why would they want to risk everything to go after world domination?

    I really hope they'll keep doing what they do good, be innovative and profitable and, continue to bring me this great experience.
    I really wish they won't open OS X to x86!

    I can't undertand that you're not ready to spend 500$ on something you agree it might change your everyday life.

    People were complaining Apple hardware was expensive (that was untrue , btw). Now that there's a mac for 500$, you want OS X on Intel, then what? You'll ask to have it for free?
    I don't think you're able to switch to OS X, you'll always find a "good" reason not to.

    If you were ready, you'll buy a Mac mini immediately. And I can assure you that you won't regret it, x86 or not.