Var BeOS tog vägen

Palm, Juli 2006:

Palm OS 6, originally code-named Sahara and now known as Palm Cobalt, is the next major version of the Palm OS from PalmSource (the software division of Palm). It was written from ground up using intellectual capital it gained from the aquistion of Be, Inc. Be was a company that developed a very technologically advanced, albeit not very widely used, operating system.

The main difference from Palm OS 5 is that Palm OS 6 was written to natively support the latest ARM-based processors. This means that Palm applications are developed directly for these processors and can take full advatage of the speed and advanced capabilties.

While OS 5 runs on these same processors, it does so using a software layer that allows older Palm applications written for the previous Motorola Dragonball 68K series processors (OS 4 and below) to run. This software layer really slows down the applications that run on your device. The only reason we don’t really think of OS 5 programs as “slow” is because the processors are over 10x faster. Developers could write some sections of native ARM code which runs very fast, but few did. PalmSource stated that many OS 5 programs ran up to 3x faster than on OS 4. Where did the difference between 3x and 10x go? It was lost in the software layer overhead.

Palm OS 6 will still include a software layer to allow older OS 5, OS 4, and prior applications to run on the new OS. As with the transition from OS 4 to OS 5, if the developers strictly follow PalmSource’s programming rules, their applications should run fine. If they got too creative and went outside these rules, then there will be problems.

Nu när man slutat skratta så vill man fråga Palm en gång till: “seriöst, vad gjorde ni av BeOS?”

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