OSOpinion features a nice editorial stating that Linux is rather bloated and that X Windows is largely responsible. It further presents QNX's floppy demo as an example that such bloat does not have to be. How does this affect Amiga Inc and QNX chances?
Photon and QNX become the example of what can be done, what has been done. The next version of Photon - that will be appearing in QNX's RealTime Platform release - is similarly minuscule yet even more refined. Note also that RtP's [Neutrino] microkernel is a considerably-advanced replacement for the QNX4 microkernel featured on the QNX demo floppy.
The Photon concept is a real mind-blower, as rectangle servers go. So simple, so powerful. But what can actually be done with it is only beginning. As some of fifteen-to twenty-thousand new sets of hands start tinkering with Photon-driven GUIs, things should really start heating up. Particles will be flying!
At the five-day QNX2000 trade show one of the keynote speakers was the founder of LinuxDevices.com, Rick Lehrbaum. I had the pleasure of dinner in his company, where we debated the merits of various (more than ten) Linux-oriented efforts at realtime determinacy and talked about the statistics he would be presenting the next morning - statistics which by the way give much hope for hybridization of Open Source ethics and IP-for-a-living-dammit concerns. Also a big topic was how Photon could become a big reason to use a POSIX-compliant OS that wasn't Linux, a commercial OS with Open Source leanings, a model QNX has dubbed "Accessible Source".
I posit again that many of us have become inveterate twiddlers. Many lean years for Amiga have given us more hacks than apps. Articles like the one on OSOpinion often mention that developers are responsible for code bloat. That lets the reader who is often primarily a user off the hook for demanding so much in terms of features, eye-candy, gewgaws. I hope that the influence of embedded philosophies in the emerging infopliance/pervasive market will help change the emphasis from rococo, meandering, option-tweaking-must-have-everything GUI labyrinths...toward spare, focused-yet-FUN interfaces that best do the jobs at hand.
And then there are the many examples in Linuxland, where programmers seem to express themselves more readily under the guise of widget sets, Windows managers, and enticing GUIs for apps - but where's the beef? These days I just don't see too many cutting-edge apps brightening up the X Windows or the Amiga Public Screens.
I hope that will change as people begin coding for the new Ami and RtP systems - with a nod to the glories of the early Amiga - when whole new categories of apps were invented and creativity was truly Kweeng...
As Amiga Inc continues to support porting from Open Sources that are Largely Linux, and as QNX's "GetQNX" program will again imprint upon the consciousness of the Linux community as it did a few months ago when it was first announced with favorable results - it could get interesting. For these worlds threaten to intersect. I know we are going to be learning something from the Linux community (if we have not already). I'd wager that we...Amiga, Phoenix, QNX...will show them some things as well. Like innovation, a different balance of license usage, a new style of energy, and maybe even something even more hardy than the penguin.