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Japan, China & South Korea May Develop OS 367

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the now-thats-a-bit-strange dept.
v1x writes "Reuters reports that Japan, South Korea and China are set to agree to jointly develop a new computer operating system as an alternative to Microsoft Corp.'s Windows software. It is said that if the plan matures, the three nations are likely to build upon an open-source operating system, such as Linux, and develop an inexpensive and trustworthy system."
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Japan, China & South Korea May Develop OS

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  • by Blaine Hilton (626259) * on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:07AM (#6838745) Homepage
    It seems like if they want the most bank for the buck they should just work on Linux and create their own distribution. Something like Redflag Software Co. [redflag-linux.com], however I doubt countries such as China would be interested in something so open as Linux. Unless they had other motives such as installing filtering code deep in the kernel or something to block access to content they don't want you to see.
  • Strange (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Henry V .009 (518000) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:09AM (#6838753) Journal
    If Japan were really planning on doing this, they would do it themselves. China would as well, I believe. I wonder who is really behind this effort?
    • Re:Strange (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Xerithane (13482) <xerithane@@@nerdfarm...org> on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:27AM (#6838870) Homepage Journal
      If Japan were really planning on doing this, they would do it themselves. China would as well, I believe. I wonder who is really behind this effort?

      Why in the world would you possibly think that? There are many, many reasons why they would want to do this together. China has cheap programmers, first. Japan and China have very good computer science people. And yes, there is a purpose for that distinction. The CS people develop the innovative portions of the system, and the programmers write the code that makes it all work.

      Just for the language support alone it benefits both Japan and China to work together to try to replace the buggy Chinese/Japanese character input systems available. I'm not too familiar with the Windows end, but the Linux jserver/freewnn line is good but far from perfect or ideal.

      How did you get modded interesting? "I wonder who is really behind this effort?" Uhm, Japan, China, and South Korea. Take the tinfoil hat off boy.
      • Re:Strange (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Henry V .009 (518000)
        Working together might be an intelligent thing to do (except for the problem of everyone speaking different languages -- I sure as hell would not ever want to run any tri-national coding project). But I think you are underestimating national pride and how much everybody hates the Japanese over there. It could be a Japanese originated PR-type thing. Reading the article, I notice that it is Japanese Government ministers announcing the project.

        The plan is to be proposed by Japanese Trade Minister Takeo Hi

        • Working together might be an intelligent thing to do (except for the problem of everyone speaking different languages -- I sure as hell would not ever want to run any tri-national coding project).

          My guess is that most of the people involved speak technical English. At least enough to keep the project going.

          But I think you are underestimating national pride and how much everybody hates the Japanese over there. It could be a Japanese originated PR-type thing. Reading the article, I notice that it is Japa
          • Wouldn't the Trade Ministry be considered a bureaucracy?

            If you want to insult me instead of presenting a rational argument, that is fine. But get your facts straight first, you dumbass. Trade minister is a cabinet post. Hiranuma is a big-time LDP honcho.
          • Re:Strange (Score:3, Interesting)

            by willtsmith (466546)
            Granted, South Korea has some bitter feelings. Especially amongst the older generation. Saying that everybody hates Japan is just fucking idiotic.

            This is certainly a relevant perspective. I would suspect a younger generation don't have as many wounds as the older. However, it's the older guys who run things over there.

            I would suspect that any techie knows enough english to keep things humming. This would be the strongest link rather than trying to resolve the differences between Chin, Kanji, and Hang
        • For those of us who aren't up on the personalities of governments around the world, would you mind describing the character of the Japanese government?
          • Not a problem. A good article on Japan in general [theatlantic.com] that touches on the subject was published by The Atlantic in 1998. Two books that I would recommend are Dogs and Demons [amazon.com] by Alex Kerr, and Embracing Defeat [amazon.com] by John Dower. Dogs and Demons explains the current corrupt system that has emerged in Japan, and Embracing Defeat (won a Pulitzer too) chronicles how it got that way after Japan's defeat in WWII.

            Basically, the problem is that the bureaucracy that exists now is exactly the same one that existed in t
    • Re:Strange (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Lemmy Caution (8378) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:32AM (#6838903) Homepage
      Japan views China as its most important future market, more important than the US. Unlike the US, Japanese manufacturers consider their entire global market before begin design and production (the US model is "build now, localize later.") This means that they are going to co-engineer their systems from the beginning.
      • Yeah, this will go slightly off topic and into the vaguely humorous zone... but man... at least producers in the United States try to do localization right before deploying the product. It seems lake Japanese industry is comfortable with the fact that the rest of the world accepts that their products aren't going to be properly localized 90% of the time, but they can get away with it because of overall product reliability and quality.
        • All the Japanese consumer electronics I've ever used have been translated very nicely.

          Apparantly, it's "hip" to include English in local Japanese advertising, products and signage. What your probably see are indirect imports with hastily (and incorrectly) translations that were never meant for native English speakers.

          The Japanese have far too much pride in their product to allow mistakes out the door.
      • Speaking for the auto industry, this is completely untrue.
    • Members and freinds of Nikkei, I suppose.... Really, this just sounds like anti-Microsoft news, and a marketing hackjob where they take Linux or BSD stuff and wrap their own buzzwords around it, fending off pre-prepared Microsoft anti-linux propaganda that would usually follow announcements such as this one.
  • translated (Score:5, Funny)

    by redcaboodle (622288) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:09AM (#6838754)
    The three nations are likely to build upon an open-source operating system, such as Linux, and develop an inexpensive and trustworthy system.
    Aka: They are going to take Linux or BSD Sources, change some strings and compile them into their own kernel.
  • Wonderful... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by militantbob (666209) <[militant] [at] [nycap.rr.com]> on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:10AM (#6838761) Homepage
    Instead of corporate lethargy and resistance to change...

    We'll have government beaurocracy and spy agencies trying to include sneaky backdoors!

    Seriously, though, this doesn't excite me very much. Kinda like China's CPU... and DoD's Linux... although they may make interesting contributions and suggest different approaches to security. And I haven't read the article, so I'm wondering whether it'll be a joint effort with separate translations, or if they'll just go with English.
  • Not to mention... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Channard (693317) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:10AM (#6838766) Journal
    .. an OS with East-Asian language support built in. If it's halfway decent, I can see it being used in cybercafes all over the globe. It'll sure be a lot easier than, as I've some Japanese travellers have to do, log on at a cafe, trying to install Japanese character sets/keyboards . They'll be able to send emails in their native language/character set right off the bat.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    This is a ripe time to force some huge donations from the behemoth!
  • Before... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mgcsinc (681597) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:13AM (#6838783)
    Before everyone comes out to commend this as countries embracing open-source software, it needs to be pointed out that the obvious result of the effort would moreover be the creation of a system with the real, ubiquitous support for the unique Asain languages, in which Windows has always been lacking...
    • Re:Before... (Score:2, Interesting)

      by bratmobile (550334)
      You've got to be kidding me. Windows 2000 and Windows XP have some of the best Asian-language support on the PLANET. How much of Linux/FreeBSD supports Unicode? Very, VERY little. Even the FIRST versions of NT supported Unicode in EVERY aspect of the system -- file naming, font rendering, etc. Windows 2000 and XP have support for Asian IMEs, right-to-left languages (like Arabic), etc. Far, far ahead of any of the free *nixes. Only MacOS compares.
      • Re:Before... (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Vexalith (684137)
        I can tell from your previous posts that you're an obvious Microsoft apologist - but separating fact from bias - Unicode support works perfectly well on this Linux box and all of the others I've ever used. International HTML characters render correctly, I can enter unicode characters into any modern application (e.g. those based on GTK or QT).

        Internationalisation has always been a responsibility of the application programmer (strings don't magically translate themselves, well at least not yet!) - so don't
      • You are somewhat correct. It supports Unicode. But so does my Redhat box. What windows/linux lacks is language support in applications. There are _heaps_ of application not using unicode, and not internationalized.
        The same goes for Linux/*BSD's.. However, these OS's have a nice feature. The OS itself, and most applications are opensource. Hence they can add the support and whatever they need themselves. You can't do that with properitary software. This is really opensource vs properitary, not a linux vs wi
    • Re:Before... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Lemmy Caution (8378)
      Asian language support in (US/European distributions of) Linux has been poor and inconsistent at best. Windows and OS X are far superior in this one regard.

      It is also somewhat "unfixable," except in small - individual desktop suites (Gnome, KDE) can fix it, but a lot of general system-wide improvement is unlikely.
      • The reason Macintosh completely dominated the Japanese market (until recently) is that they were the first OS to really support appropriate input methods and localization.

    • I don't see the confict. Open Source by design enables developers to modify it. If these countries chose Open Source because it allows them to alter it to meet their needs, then they are supporting Open Source in the purest form possible, because it works where centralized proprietary solution hasn't.
    • by That_Dan_Guy (589967) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:58AM (#6839052)
      Funny, my wife has no problems using Windows 2000 to read and type Chinese on her computer. Previous versions certainly sucked (I have first hand experience on this having lived in Taiwan for 5 years and had to set up both Linux and Windows computers. And until a few years ago getting it working under Linux was no walk in the park) but the support for the very large variety of input methods for Chinese is pretty impressive.

    • ...redundant, of course, but so is the lament for Asian language support :)
  • by ccady (569355) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:14AM (#6838785) Journal

    A framework for developing the system would be set up during meetings by government ministers in mid-September, followed by committee meetings involving private-sector specialists from each of the three nations in November.

    1) An operating system designed by a committee is going to fail.

    2) An operating system controlled by a government is eventually going to be oppressive and restrictive.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      1. It is not "design by committee" - it is policy making by committee.

      2. It is not "a government", it is multiple governments which don't all always agree on everything.

      Establishing *infrastructure* is beneficial for everyone, so cooperation like this should be welcomed. You might see policy development being slow because of government involvement, but that's how it is when large organizations are involved.
    • by quandrum (652868)
      1) An operating system designed by a committee is going to fail

      Why is it going to fail? Has a committee never worked? Isn't this what happens more or less in large companies, ones that build large software systems? For every Linus, there is probably hundreds of incredibly complex pieces of code designed by committees of programmers and managers.

      2) An operating system controlled by a government is eventually going to be oppressive and restrictive.

      WHY?! Please, take off your tinfoil for a while and
      • WHY?! Please, take off your tinfoil for a while and go out for some air. not everyone is out to get you. Maybe they just want to offer their citizens, and especially the companies in their country a compelling alternative to American made products with poor support for their languages.
        Uhhhhh...yeah. Which China have you been reading about?
      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        Too many cynics.... (Score:3, Insightful) by quandrum (652868) on Sunday August 31, @09:40 (#6838946) 1) An operating system designed by a committee is going to fail

        Why is it going to fail? Has a committee never worked? Isn't this what happens more or less in large companies, ones that build large software systems? For every Linus, there is probably hundreds of incredibly complex pieces of code designed by committees of programmers and managers.

        Let's just take a quick flyover past the primary comme

    • doesnt freebsd have a committee?

      oh yeah, i forgot that bsd is dead. =)
    • 1) An operating system designed by a committee is going to fail.

      What? You mean like Multics? But that's everywhe... oh...

    • 1) An operating system designed by a committee is going to fail.

      2) An operating system controlled by a government is eventually going to be oppressive and restrictive.


      Of course if this were true then TCP/IP (yes I do not it is not an OS) would be obsolete and the Internet would have long since been abandoned.

      Right wing libertarians need to do better than spout this "government is evil" tripe. It's a sort of trotskyism in reverse, and it's just as boring and stupid.
  • The question is; (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TyrranzzX (617713) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:16AM (#6838795) Journal
    Will it be open source?

    Will it be an os designed to screw people over? (as in, drm, tcpa, etc)

    Will they simply steal OSS and release it with few changes without honoring the gpl?

    Will it be in other languages and availabe to foreigners?

    These people are notorious for stealing ideas, and in most cases, modifying them into something better then claiming them as their own. I don't trust foreign companies and goverments any more, and in some cases, less, than I trust my own(US). What is the community to do if they steal it and start selling it stateside?
    • by rde (17364) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:25AM (#6838858)
      Will it be open source?
      My guess is 'yes'. Two reasons:

      THey'll want business to use it. And businesses will be unwilling to use anything that they suspect has a backdoor. The source'd have to be visible for them to trust it

      It's being done by three governments, not one. That makes it a lot harder for any, ahem, idiosyncratic code to make it in, and again, OSS is the best way of ensuring this.

      Will they simply steal OSS and release it with few changes without honoring the gpl?
      How do you know microsoft isn't doing that right now? I'm not suggesting that they are, but there seems to be a prevalent attitude during this discussion that china=evil, japan/rok=irrelevent, USA=land of free (if not Free). Japan and ROK are both WTO members, and China really wants to be. It's unlikely they're going to contravene those rules without good reason. Besides, if it's open source, the question goes away.

      Will it be in other languages and availabe to foreigners?
      Who cares? Seriously. If you've got Linux, BSD and Windows, you're more or less covered. Again, if it's open source, etc, etc

      These People, etc
      I guess we'll have to just hope that they act honorably, just like all American companies do.

      • Re:The question is; (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Vexalith (684137)
        Software piracy is a big enough problem in Asia that I suspect a government would be unwise to attempt to sell its product to its public when they'd just use it without paying anyway.

        Hopefully it will also be distributed open source, but I guess only time will tell. It's interesting to consider how compatible Chinese Communist ideals with OSS (more compatible than Capitalist Democracies?).
      • Japan and ROK are both WTO members, and China really wants to be. It's unlikely they're going to contravene those rules without good reason. Besides, if it's open source, the question goes away.

        Actually, Chiana was admitted in the WTO recently. However I somehow doubt that for a country to be in the WTO guaranties that it will respect its rules ;-)
  • by kfg (145172) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:16AM (#6838796)
    an OS to compete with Windows will be made in Finland.

    Pull the other one.

    KFG
    • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:58AM (#6839051) Journal
      And you are right, that is a joke. Linus Torvald never wrote the linux the kernel as competition to anyone or anything. He wrote it for fun to see if he could pull it off. He released it to see if anyone wanted to help him get some utitlites running on it.

      The only OS mentioned is Minix and he refers to it that if you are tired of everything just running under Minix you might give his kernel a try. Hardly a rousing sales pitch except to geeks.

      That is btw Microsofts biggest problem with linux. Where MS got to meet growth targets and keep market share. Linux is free of all that. If one person still enjoys tinkering with it it has met 100% of its goals.

      Remember that it is companies like Redhat and Suse that can fail. Linux cannot fail. Neat isn't it.

      Disclaimer I am talking about the kernel here. The GNU part has of course always had higher ambitions according to its founders.

  • heh. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Frederique Coq-Bloqu (628621) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:16AM (#6838799) Journal
    It'll probably end up being a Windows clone so that license fees will not have to be payed to Microsoft. However, Microsoft itself being a behemoth takes years to make new versions. Remember how long it took them to create the NT line that lead up to Windows 2000 and XP? I can't imagine these three countries being any more efficient. Though I will give them credit for their workaholic culture.
  • My friend at work from china is a PS2 freak and was mentioning how most of his favourite games are japanese and arent even available here. It seems like China, japan and (south) korea share a common font and any game made in japan enjoys a huge market within those countries.

    By making an OS together, they could probably build one from scratch with their native language support without English as the intermediary anywhere in the processes.
    • Re:makes sense (Score:2, Insightful)

      by ctk76 (531418)
      They do not share common fonts. China in the old days was the dominant force in the region, and Korea and Japan had to study Chinese just like they are studying English now as their second language. Few Chinese characters that Korea and Japan incorporate into their publications have different pronunciations in each country, and are completely unintelligible to each other. Average Koreans and Japanese will recognize enough Chinese characters to play video games, but I assume they'll have to still rely on the
  • MS's Nightmare (Score:5, Insightful)

    by linuxislandsucks (461335) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:19AM (#6838823) Homepage Journal
    welcome to MS's nightmare all developing nations working together to do linux based OS to not only get users but alos developers...

    so when is the Redmond ligths out party?
    • Re:MS's Nightmare (Score:3, Interesting)

      by gad_zuki! (70830)
      >so when is the Redmond ligths out party?

      Not soon, but this will hurt them significantly. I can really see the next version of Windows coming out with some kind of linux emulator so Windows based business can have the best of both worlds. Its the same in the Mac world, they have to emulate Windows too.

      Whether this kills Redmond is a tough question. Many CS/IS/IT programs here and abroad are in many ways MS proprietary based, many developers know nothing but windows, etc. I think if MS fails it will
  • I wonder if Microsoft would be able to block its sales in the US, as people have mentioned here for other interesting systems developed in Asia.

    Let's see; what was the name of that high-reliability open-source OS that that the Japanese are using for things like autos? What ever happened to the notepad computer running linux that was announced over there several years ago, but which is only available in the US with Windows installed?

    (What, me paranoid? ;-)

  • So..... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bratmobile (550334) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:21AM (#6838835)
    Microsoft might lose, what, $20 in revenue? Piracy is so bad in Asia, it's a wonder anyone can sell any legit software there, at all.
  • by leoaugust (665240) <leoaugust&gmail,com> on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:23AM (#6838841) Journal

    A framework for developing the system would be set up during meetings by government ministers in mid- September, followed by committee meetings involving private-sector specialists from each of the three nations in November.

    It looks like a good plan, but I hope the execution is not flawed.

    First, how good can a product be whose framework are "set during meetings by Governmment ministers followed by private sector specialists" .... it seems like a classic mistake of the horse pushing the cart rather than pulling it ...

    Second I hope these government ministers are not so secretive that they end up producing another "black box" like Windows ... which does no good to the concept of open source ...

    Third I hope the don't start writing the programs in Chinese in the hope of avoiding the best virus and worm writers - who I doubt would go thru the trouble of learning Chinese to be able to penetrate this new system ...

    Fourth I hope these "private sector specialists" are not clones of Bill Gates ... after all who doesn't want to rule the world ...

    Fifth One Great Wall of China is more than enough. We don't want a "Great Wall of China, Japn, and Korea," and no matter what they say, it is NOT going to be the Eighth Wonder of the World ...

    • ...how good can a product be whose framework are "set during meetings by Governmment ministers followed by private sector specialists" .... it seems like a classic mistake of the horse pushing the cart rather than pulling it ...
      Oh, absolutely. How fortunate we are that the Internet was designed and implemented by the private sector, without any of that nasty government interference!
  • This sounds nice and ideological. In keeping with that, it'll be Aspect-Oriented, written in Lisp, and written by smiling students straight out of image libraries
  • by heironymouscoward (683461) <heironymouscoward&yahoo,com> on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:31AM (#6838894) Journal
    My company spent a lot of time making a Unicode version of one of our larger web applications, and it does well in the Japanese market. Japan (and I guess Korea and China) are largely excluded from the Western market (as consumers) because of the complexity of supporting their character sets (Katakana, Hirigi, and Kanji in Japan alone).

    So Japan, Korea, China share the need for coherent Unicode support in their software at OS and application level. This is something missing from anything one can put together today in the West, either using Windows or Linux.

    So this move makes sense, though given the history between these three countries, somewhat unlikely. Perhaps after the successful football world cup, someone has been thinking...

    Anyhow, I've said several times that it seems an obvious thing for governments to do, especially ones outside the reach/grip of the US hegemony: invest in local open source, both to encourage the development of local IT and to save money by buying less American junk. China, India, Brazil: these are the countries where the likeliehood of a serious home-grown OSS "industry" is most likely.

    Before the "destroying value and US jobs" mob get here, I'll just add my voice saying it's a good thing and all success to them.


    • Yet again an Asian country is deciding to use government action to fund an attack on an existing market. Why is our government never going to do anything to respond? Why is it that we have to compete with a culture that lets its people work for 2 cents a day cloning other people's products with government money?

      The US should not even trade with these people.
      • It's called global competition, and it's been going on for decades.

        You know your computer was probably manufactured in China or Taiwan, right?

        And your TV.

        Maybe your car. Hell, maybe even your fucking toaster.

        The point is, if you feel so strongly about this kind of thing, there are plenty of things you can be doing (or avoid doing) to vote with your wallet.

        Peace,
        • by tjstork (137384)

          The monitor is ViewSonic, which is a private label of a screen made in Japan.

          The car is a Chrysler, but my next car will be either a Ford or a GM.

          I avoid buying things made in China. However, since Walmart has no problem waving the flag while it subdizes the export of US jobs, I guess sometimes I do get stuck.

          I vote with my wallet, and I vote with my vote as well. Free trade is a joke.
          • Re:Agree (Score:3, Insightful)

            by thebigmacd (545973)
            ViewSonic is a California-based company headed by a Taiwanese native, James Chu. They have only one office in Japan, but two in China and three in Taiwan. Daimler-Chrysler is a European company, which owns Mercedes-Benz and Maybach. It has "strategic partners" [partially owns] Fuso, Mitsubishi, and Hyundai. They build vehicles in 37 coutries, including Mexico, China, India, and Indonesia. Ford owns Mazda, Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover, and Aston Martin. They own assembly plants in Thailand, the Phillippines a
    • So Japan, Korea, China share the need for coherent Unicode support in their software at OS and application level. This is something missing from anything one can put together today in the West, either using Windows or Linux.
      How about MacOS? I've heard it's built to support Unicode from the group up. I don't know about input support, but anyway, may be Asian countries should just Switch [apple.com]?
  • Why wouldn't the "Oriental Community" just USE Linux on a non PC platform like Sun or Apple?

    Why wouldn't they even consider Mac OS X? The Xserve is a very cheap solution to deploy. eMacs are sub $800 iMac CRTs (still made for edu & gov) are sub $700 iMac LCDs are sub $1000 - G5's are looking like they will be the 4 year without obsolescence computer and could possibly be a long term 7-8 year solution - as most Macs are.

    This sounds like to me that some "out of work linux" lobby has managed to hoodwin

    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 31, 2003 @12:05PM (#6839094)
      Can anyone say WHY 1/4 of the world's population NEEDS a proprietary system?

      To control their destiny? To not have their infrastucture held hostage to foreign export controls? (Can we say PS2/PGP/Supercomputer/Clinton/USA? There, I knew we could.) And since when did American hardware/software (less than 1/20th the world's population) define 'standards'? Standards should be in the data, implementation is still free and open. That's why we have Macs, Suns, StrongArm and PCs. Right?

      A 1995 Mac is still a viable platform? Slowly backs away, smiling and nodding, making no sudden moves.....

  • From the article:
    ... the three nations are likely to build upon an open-source operating system, such as Linux, and develop an inexpensive and trustworthy system.
    Number of Linux Distributions Surpasses Number of Users [bbspot.com]
  • Cooperation is good (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tsu Dho Nimh (663417) <abacaxi&hotmail,com> on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:41AM (#6838948)

    I think the OSS movement should get nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize - getting China to cooperate with Japan is not easy.

    I spent some frustrating months trying to swap files back and forth with a Japanese company. If we had been able to convince our respective corporate IT departments to use Linux, it would have been a lot easier.

  • by Fuyu (107589)
    Whatever happened to China's Red Flag Linux [redflag-linux.com]? They have Server and Desktop flavors available.
  • by 3seas (184403) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:51AM (#6839010) Journal
    Besides all the comments that say it won't happen there is the possibility that some interesting things might come of such a project.

    They are allowed to do such a thing, or at least try.

    It is possible that they start from scratch but can avoid all the hard lessons learned by others. And they don't seem to have political constraints to deal with as TinyOS did.

    The Japanese are well known for their technical abilities and expertise and long term perspectives. China is known for their numbers of people that can follow direction. And South Korea is known for their ability to imitate product look and feel.

    Is it possible that such mindsets can produce a rock solid OS that is easy to use and safe from attack?

    Probably! So lets how they are open source, so we all can learn from them.
  • China and OSS? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TheWart (700842) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:54AM (#6839031)
    Maybe I am just cynical, but how can China really be embracing OSS when they are the ones with the infamouse 'great firewall'?

    In my opinion, they would simply make it so that they (the govt.) are the only ones who handle security etc, so no outside info can get in.
  • by Offwhite98 (101400) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @11:59AM (#6839059) Homepage
    I think Apple could provide a poweful BSD base for the new OS along with good Unicode and Graphics support. If they could convince these 3 countries to start with MacOS X or Darwin they would take a big step forward for market share. Of course there is the issue of hardware costs along with the OS being proprietary or not. I am sure one goal of this new asian-based OS is that they will not be reliant on the US for software. In the very least they could work closely with the development efforts of this new OS to ensure it is MacOS X compatible so they would have an existing set of applications ready to use from day one.

    Also for Linux, it is somewhat dated already and I sincerely believe that. But I mean this more in a sense of desktop Linux vs server Linux. The X Windows system is lacking in many areas and other efforts like the open source Berlin or Apple's Quartz is a big step forward. The constant duality of KDE vs Gnome is always an issue. Sure it is nice to have options, but it can also be difficult to understand for new users. When MacOS X came out I was a little upset that there was no theme support, but I quickly accepted it and realized that I should be using the applications instead of making the display look different every other day. And changing the look and feel only serves to confuse users and make tech support more difficult.

    Apple was bold enough to scrap OS 9 and move forward with OS X (based on NextStep) because they knew it was a better starting point. I hope China, Japan and South Korea decide they want something better than what Linux and X11 provides.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Saying that "Linux is dated" is as absurd as saying packet-based communications (invented in the 1960s) is dated. Linux is updated more frequently than any other OS except perhaps FreeBSD. Linux updates with new features and bug fixes are being posted in real-time, literally every few minutes, by people posting new patches on the Linux Kernel Mailing List. Some parts of the architecture of Linux like packet-based communications are old because they work very well and because new functionality can be crea
      • I say Linux is dated for the DESKTOP due largely to both X Windows as well as the fact that it is based on many old ideas which have been changed and improved in newer systems. Think of it in terms of Apache 1.3 vs Apache 2.0. The new model does threading and can chain many handlers together to create a response. These features were not easily added to Apache 1.3 so they started with a new model.

        For Linux, it sure can do server-based services, but it does not make it automatically a perfect OS for the d
  • In other news Theo De Radt (the shill of OpenBSD) today announced that he was moving to Japan to adivse the tri-country coolition on security matters. The West sighed in relief.
  • About 1 year ago, this was announced and spoken of. It was at the time thought that it would be Linux with wine.
    It is Linows for the far east.

    Funny thing is, it will work and will allow other countries to compete against the near monopoly that the USA has on software unless the US software companies start moving to Linux. But MS is trying to stop that with help from a number of friends in high (or low ) places.
  • I hope they do for Linux what Apple did for BSD--give it an effortlessly-useable GUI. That's the sort of thing the open source community has not shown itself capable of doing. Although commercial interests Red Hat and Mandrake have made progress in this area.
  • Asia is heavily divided, and there is lots of mistrust going on between those countries. I know in my MBA program students from Japan, South Korea and China barely even talk to each other due to historic tensions and conflicts. I am wondering what level of cooperation will there be between those countries in developing this product? Will they be able to cooperate sufficiently to make anything meaningful?
  • by GeoSanDiego (703197) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @12:34PM (#6839293)
    28FEB2003 ZDNet: "Microsoft signs pact with Chinese government allowing them to view Window's source code." 31AUG2003 Reuters: "China, Japan, Korea to develop Window's replacement." 31AUG2003 Bill Gates: "Doh!"
  • by Animats (122034) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @12:44PM (#6839373) Homepage
    A reasonable first step, and one suited for such a consortium, would be to go through all major open-source software and convert it to 100% Unicode-enabled, put all the text into resources, and provide resource files for each of the national languages. Then check all the code back into the major open-source projects.
  • Open-source sucks
  • But will it support my hardware [impress.co.jp]
  • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @12:48PM (#6839404) Journal
    Of course it would be great if they would build upon work already done. Be it Linux BSD Tron Minix or whatever. Even if this is nothing more then an attempt to get Gates to fly over to lower prices it is good news.
    1. Great news. With the funding of three big goverments Linux gets all the little things that volunteers are bad at. Documentation, help files, support, QA, easy of use, standarization.
    2. Good news. They create a new opensource OS. With a big portion of the world then not using windows standards for exchanghing information will have to be set and obeyed by all sites unless they want to stop communicating. So no more MS only sites. No more single platform document formats. Note that PDF can remain closed as it takes the time to port its aps to the different platforms.
    3. Okay news. They create a closed source OS. Pretty much the same as above but without the benefit that any improvements can be used by the whole world.
    4. Not bad news. This never pans out china keeps working on red flag, japan keeps using tron. At least it shows that goverments are getting fed up with the current situation. The longest journey begins with a single step. Let this be the first one.

    Please understand that I do use windows and think it to be a wonderful OS, for certain tasks. As a game machine it is without equal. Sure games crash but then they push the system to its limits and lets face it game producers are hardly know to produce bug free code itself.

    For every other task I have gotten fed up with microsoft. I am now running a 2003 machine and it is just as crash prone as xp as 98 as 95 as 3.11 and as dos was. My linux desktop has not had single crash. Oh opera crashes all the time but I do a "killall opera; opera" and it is back exactly where it crashed. Try that with IE or for that matter with Mozilla.

    I don't want to see MS fail or driven into the ground. I want market forces to force them to stop adding eye candy and now fix the bloody core itself. Has anyone else noticed that 2003 wich supposdly should have new buffer overflow protection has so far been affected the same as all the other NT's out there?

    Perhaps you can compare it to the american car industry wich kept making its cars flashier with more and more chrome attached while they became less reliable and ever greater gass guslers. Enter the japanese with tiny boring cars that worked and they forced the americans to finally change.

    So the east to the rescue again. I will belief it when I see it, they haven't even gotten a logo yet everyone knows opensource needs a cute logo, but for now I prefer to be positive.

    mmm What about the penguin from Evangelion, Pen Pen as the logo? Pen Pen [k12.pa.us]

  • Good. Open-source rocks
  • by 00_NOP (559413) on Sunday August 31, 2003 @01:26PM (#6839622) Homepage
    Use the HURD, microkernels are the way of the future :)

    Joking aside, I hope they don't use Linux - it would be good to see this scale of effort into something new, hell maybe even a microkernel based OS.

    Linux is doing fine without them, and maybe they could increase the competition...

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