COMP: Software and Operating Systems [user-centricity]

Sandy Madole (
Sat, 16 Aug 1997 10:07:49 -0400

I'm not sure who wrote each of these - both replies to my original post came
as attachments and I couldn't match them up with the e-mails:

> You really need to check out Java, and especially JavaBeans. Sun is in
> trying to make JavaBeans do exactly what you describe, And, if you don't
> have the right Beans, you can go get the ones you need from anybody who
> give them or sell them to you, or program your own. You aren't stuck
> with a single-vendor solution. Microsoft seems to see the threat, so
> they are atempting to weasel out of their agreement to support Java.

Java is close, but not close enough. Java's good because it integrates the
operating system with the programming language. However it's a bit loose on
the operating system side (Sun isn't sure if it is an OS). The idea of
'thin-clients' (such as the Java based NC) is directly the opposite of
user-centricity (which favours a very fat client). Sun's continued support
of NC is taking it in the wrong direction.

IMO, I think that Microsoft is more scared of the amount of hype Java is
getting than any real threat. It's changing Java to support it's own
standards because it can't afford to put another layer on top of Win 95.

> You're up against tough competition. Don't think that Microsoft is one to
> rest on its laurels... Microsoft has invested significant research
> into a variety of improvements to their OS which will have a profound
> impact on the way we interact with our computers, if only because
> is monopolizing the market.

Microsoft's Millennium project (which I have mentioned in previous posts) is
very close to some of the ideas I spoke of. Then again Windows 95 was a
fast, malleable and simple OS when it was in research. Then they add the
corporate baggage!

> IMUninformedO, NLP or something similar is the next UI breakthrough,
> bridging the gap between the GUI and the neural interface; I'm also not
> convinced that AI is necessary to understand language.

How would you do language understanding (very different from recognition)
without AI? How would the system match words with objects? The great thing
about AI is I can tell my computer to do something no programmer ever dreamed
of, that will be the true computer revolution!

--WaxSoft Corporation