Windows

Guess the OS

We already played a game of Name That Windows Version. Let's expand it a little and see if you can figure out what operating system that's being talked about in this article from the New York Times.

We already played a game of Name That Windows Version. Let's expand it a little and see if you can figure out what operating system is being talked about in this article from the New York Times.

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A couple of weeks ago, we played a game of Name That Windows Version where I found a press release about a version of Windows from some time in the past, stripped out the identifying information in the release, and asked if you could identify it. It was an exercise to prove just how the hype of each version of Windows matches the previous one.

This week, I thought we would try again. This time, however, I'm going to include more than just Windows as an option. Don't take that as a clue that it's not Windows though. I just wanted to make the test harder.

Hot off the presses

This article appeared in the New York Times. As before, I've stripped out the name and some of the things in the article that would make the choice obvious. See if you can tell what this article is talking about:

Whether, or When, to Buy XXXXX

SOME people loathe XXXXX, some say it is the greatest development in personal computing in many years, and most don't know it from chopped liver. But the new operating system for powerful personal computers is eventually going to affect everyone who uses a PC in business.

While XXXXX will become the new standard for business PC's, that certainly won't happen today, or even next year. For starters, XXXXX brings with it a lot of additional costs. Last week's column discussed some of the costs of switching from XXXXX to XXXXX: Customers will need new hardware to provide enough memory, new versions of favorite software programs and retraining for everyone who works on the computers.

Is XXXXX worth that cost? Not surprisingly, ... , says yes. Many other experts agree. So do the corporate users who've begun working with XXXXX since it was shipped early this month. They say it's better than they expected, with few of the bugs common to the debut of any program and a potential that is strikingly clear the moment the system is turned on.

Does that mean corporate buyers should rush out and pick up XXXXX tomorrow? Or should they wait, particularly since advanced and extended versions of XXXXX are promised in the not-too-distant future?

Right now, XXXXX is an obese, snorting memory hog that demands a minimum of xxxx xxxx bytes just to boot it up and xxxx xxxx bytes before it can run any of your .... software...

''Users and vendors are excited by the possibilities unleashed by XXXXX,'' said John McCarthy of Forrester Research, who polled 18 independent software vendors, nine large industrial companies and six computer system suppliers.

XXXXX will allow those companies to begin sniffing out the emerging capabilities and strengths of the new operating system, which include multitasking (running more than one program at the same time), improved memory management, superior networking, data base and communications features, and, generally, a better computer environment for programmers to work in.

Of course, it is also a more complex environment for programmers. ''To say, 'Hello' in a window under XXXXX requires 300 lines of code,'' one programmer said, compared with five lines in the computer language C.

Yet many businesses will discover, perhaps to their delight, that they don't need to take the XXXXX step at all -- that they can get along quite nicely for years to come with XXXXX. They may not need to spend the estimated $xxxx to $xxxx a machine it will take to convert existing hardware and software to run XXXXX

So most businesses probably ought to wait at least a year before deciding whether to make the giant step to XXXXX. That year should see the arrival of new software applications for XXXXX - which, ... will make PC software appear much like the easy-to-use Macintosh software.

Name that operating system!

OK... so you've read the article. Now -- Name That Operating System!

Do you think you got it right?

Get the answer.

15 comments
mork451
mork451

I -was- using OS/2 at the workplace and almost cried when they took it away.

mem03
mem03

I used to work for IBM, way back when, and I supported OS/2 for our customer set. I loved the product, and the potential was vast. It's downfall was IBM marketing -- they managed to screw up everything they touched (XYwrite, for example), either by neglect or corporate ethnocentricity (aka an EBCDIC-based word processor) instead of asking what the customer really wanted. Pity ... it could have been SO much more.

Justin James
Justin James

It made sense, since outside of a Microsoft platform, OS/2 was the only OS this seriously discussed for mainstream business desktop usage, and most certainly the only one where it would be suggested that businsses would not adopt it for hardware, not compatability reasons. J.Ja

Tearat
Tearat

You would think some of the bad PR and constant complaints about the problems users and IT pros have with new operating systems would sink in You would think they would get the message that hardware costs and cannot be easily replaced But they just keep on shoving them out the door and expect everyone else to fix it or tell them how to fix their own product Or to spend lots of money just to run the shiny new turd Oh what fun we will have when Win 7 arrives the fanboys will be running around the forums telling us everyone was saying the same things when Vista was released Yep history will repeat again Fanboys being stupid and sounding like an echo over and over again MS being stupid and releasing another over sized bloated bug ridden OS over and over again They never learn It takes a special type of stupid not to learn from your mistakes

sidekick
sidekick

This past winter, I had a client who had an old app for an old instrument that ran on OS/2. He managed to find an unopened 16 disk set on EBay and asked me to install it. After 20 attempts or so, and figuring out the jumper on the hard drive to limit the disk size, I got it going. Unfortunately, the next day I was out of a job, so I never found out how well it performed.

Jacky Howe
Jacky Howe

They obviously wern't talking about windows or linux. "an obese, snorting memory hog gave it away".

tech10171968
tech10171968

Heh, the article mentions our mystery OS being a resource hog and requiring the purchase of new hardware to keep up with it. This could only be a description of Vista.

John Sheesley - TechRepublic Pro
John Sheesley - TechRepublic Pro

I found another news article about an up and coming operating system. Check Classics Rock and see if you can identify it: http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/classic-tech/?p=193 Again notice the similarities in the article to what we see on a daily basis today. Businesses will love it. Researchers all say we'll be using it. What's the operating system? Check and see if you can guess the OS.

HAL 9000
HAL 9000

I just wonder how the accountants that worked in the PC side of the business allowed the PC to get so big. Maybe it was it's time but with the M$ Dos and crappy Software that alone should have killed off the bulk of PC Sales after the first one was sold. I've never been able to understand how IBM actually made the PC so successful. Everything they sold prior or since has been a marketing disaster. The products may have been Top Notch but the way that they marketed them was a nightmare. Col

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

People say the same thing every time MS releases a new OS and have been since the dawn of MS time. I would GUESS OS/2 but the clue I picked that up on, (300 lines of code) is exactly the same advantage to using Python over C, however they are both programming languages and not actual OS's.

The Scummy One
The Scummy One

All of MS OS's after DOS were resource hogs. However the line about 300 lines of code for a window that says 'hello' was a good giveaway. DOS didnt use windows, and Win revisions had a DOS window. In DOS, or Windows it would not have required 300 lines of code. However, it was bloatware still, and it didnt seem to fit with anything else. Therefore it must have been OS/2, as MS developed it.

User94327
User94327

I'm 2 for 2. I debated between OS/2 and 2000 until I saw OS/2 in the tags for this column. I used to run OS/2 Warp and loved it. I was able to run every one of my Windows 3 programs on it. Until Win95 came out and I couldn't run any of the cool new software designed for 95 on OS/2. That killed it for me.

jkratzer
jkratzer

It is the windows 95 operating system. If you remember Bill Gates in a speach he gave on the OS back in the mid 90's was touting Windows 95 as a more mac like environment.

John Sheesley - TechRepublic Pro
John Sheesley - TechRepublic Pro

The system auto-tags posts and comments so that's not always a good giveaway. We have the ability to add tags, but most of it is done for us. I saw that it picked up OS/2 as well as Windows too. Thought it was kind odd. Figured it was just the system doing its own guessing. :)